It's Tone, Not Taxes, a Tycoon Tells the President In an "open letter" to President Obama that whizzed around e-mail inboxes of Wall Street and corporate America last week, Leon Cooperman, a 68-year-old Wall Street veteran, argued that President Obama employs a "divisive, polarizing tone," Andrew Ross Sorkin writes in his DealBook column.
A bit of vroom need.
Toyota slips up
What the world's biggest carmaker can learn from other corporate turnarounds
ING to Spin Off Units in Bid to Assuage EU Over State Aid
The financial-services firm said it will spin off its insurance and investment-management businesses and repay half the $15 billion it owes the Dutch government in a bid to assuage EU concerns over the state-aid package it received last year.
Crisis-ridden Romania gets finance whizz as prime minister
Romanian President Traian Basescu nominated central bank adviser and former
IMF representative Lucian Croitoru as prime minister on Thursday, following
a collapse of the government earlier this week in parliament.
The DW-WORLD Article
The Monster Mishmash
The super-duper 3-D big-screen Imaxed-out extravaganza that is "Monsters vs. Aliens" has bells and whistles, whiz and bang, sound and fury. It even has Reese Witherspoon.
(By Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post)
More and More, Schools Got Game
Lifelong gamer Russell Alford, 15, usually has to wait until his homework and chores are finished before he can play Call of Duty 4, but this semester he got to play another video game at school. His finance class at Marshall High School in Fairfax County designed avatars and saved a virtual city...
(By Michael Alison Chandler, The Washington Post)
Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. has told one of its subsidiaries to stop insuring bank deposits above the amount guaranteed by the federal government, dealing a fresh blow to the financial-services industry as it tries to assuage anxious customers.
verb [T] FORMAL
to make unpleasant feelings less strong:
The government has tried to assuage the public's fears.
━━ vt. 和らげる, 静める. as・suage・ment ━━ n. 軽減, 緩和.
NEW YORK -- Fact: Kids create more than 100,000 avatars each day in virtual communities such as Habbo and Club Penguin...
IToy's ME2 (pronounced "me too," it stands for "my electronic double") grew out of a doctor's suggestion that George Irwin wear a pedometer to monitor how much exercise he was getting.
Using a pedometer, ME2 keeps track of a kid's daily steps and transfers points to an avatar's power levels. Ride your bike; earn points to buy a virtual vehicle.
- The incarnation of a Hindu deity, especially Vishnu, in human or animal form.
- An embodiment, as of a quality or concept; an archetype: the very avatar of cunning.
- A temporary manifestation or aspect of a continuing entity: occultism in its present avatar.
[Sanskrit avatāraḥ, descent (of a deity from heaven), avatar : ava, down + tarati, he crosses.]
Avatar is a 2009 American epic science fiction film written and directed by James Cameron, and starring Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Michelle Rodriguez, Joel David Moore, Giovanni Ribisi and Sigourney Weaver. The film is set in the mid-22nd century, when humans are mining a precious mineral called unobtanium on Pandora, a lush habitable moon of a gas giant in the Alpha Centauri star system. The expansion of the mining colony threatens the continued existence of a local tribe of Na'vi—a humanoid species indigenous to Pandora. The film's title refers to the genetically engineered Na'vi-human hybrid bodies used by a team of researchers to interact with the natives of Pandora.
Development on Avatar began in 1994, when Cameron wrote an 80-page scriptment for the film. Filming was supposed to take place after the completion of Cameron's 1997 film Titanic, for a planned release in 1999, but according to Cameron, the necessary technology was not yet available to achieve his vision of the film. Work on the language for the film's extraterrestrial beings began in Summer 2005, and Cameron began developing the screenplay and fictional universe in early 2006. Avatar was officially budgeted at $237 million. Other estimates put the cost between $280 million and $310 million for production and at $150 million for promotion. The film was released for traditional viewing, 3-D viewing (using the RealD 3D, Dolby 3D, XpanD 3D, and IMAX 3D formats), and "4-D" viewing. The stereoscopic filmmaking was touted as a breakthrough in cinematic technology.
Avatar premiered in London on December 10, 2009, and was internationally released on December 16 and in the United States and Canada on December 18, to critical acclaim and commercial success. The film broke several box office records during its release and became the highest-grossing film of all time in the U.S. and Canada and also worldwide, surpassing Titanic, which had held the records for the previous twelve years. It also became the first film to gross more than $2 billion. Avatar was nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, and won three, for Best Cinematography, Best Visual Effects, and Best Art Direction. The film's home release went on to break opening sales records and became the top-selling Blu-ray of all time. Following the film's success, Cameron signed with 20th Century Fox to produce two sequels, making Avatar the first of a planned trilogy.
━━ n. 歩数計, 万歩計.
At Toy Fair, Kids' Play Gets Wired
Latest Innovations Spring From and Into Virtual Worlds
By Scott MooreWashington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, February 20, 2008; Page C01
Meet Bob, an $80 device that controls the electrical power for a TV or computer monitor. By requiring users to punch in a code number, Bob silently enforces parents' viewing rules, counting down the amount of viewing time available and turning off the screen during designated homework hours and at bedtime.
"I didn't like setting an egg timer and arguing with the kids. . . . Now they know they have a finite amount of time," Michelle Gallop said, citing her children's more-informed viewing choices. "And my sons are relieved I'm not yelling at them."
Fisher Price's Laugh & Learn Smart Bounce & Spin Pony is based on the classic springy playground ride. But this one, for ages 12 to 36 months, is connected to the TV via a wireless device. The more baby bounces, the better the onscreen educational play. At age 3, the child can continue the move-and-play process on the Smart Cycle, celebrated last weekend as the Toy Industry of America's innovative toy of the year. And you think today's kids have trouble sitting still in school.
Keyboards are designed for the very earliest adopters. Targeted Technology Solutions has peripherals for children as young as 2, and myPC Toddler is spill-proof and washable, for those still drinking from a sippy cup.
For all the new products, the exhibit hall with its 1,200 vendors has been crammed with a surprising number of classics. Cabbage Patch Kids, introduced 25 years ago, are ready for an encore. Classic editions of Scrabble, Monopoly and Taboo are displayed next to newfangled versions, including an eco-centered Earthopoly, made by Cincinnati-based Late for the Sky. Pewter and plastic game pieces have been replaced by bamboo, lima beans, black walnuts, crystal, glass and shells.
Soren Torp Laursen, president of Lego Americas, sees a resurgence of classic toys. "I've been in the industry for 22 years, and for 22 years I've heard that technology is taking over the toy market. . . . Looking at the successes at last year's toy industry, Lego by a long mile was one of the very few shining stars."
Play hasn't changed, says Susan Magsamen. FamilyStories, based in Hunt Valley, Md., distributes some of the science projects she created 20 years ago.
"Technology has a place, and it's really important, but we are wired to be multi-sensory," she said, explaining why hands-on activities can't be replaced by online experiences. "Kids have so many ways to get information, so many choices. In some ways, they are way overstimulated, oversaturated and overwhelmed. . . . They have one intense experience and they are ready to move on to the next."
NEW YORK -- Fact: Kids create more than 100,000 avatars each day in virtual communities such as Habbo and Club Penguin. That startling statistic has broad implications for how kids play and what the $22 billion toy industry wants to sell them to play with. More and more, when kids "go outside to play," they're really venturing forth into increasingly sophisticated online neighborhoods, and manufacturers want a piece of that action. At the annual Toy Fair celebration of innovation and inspiration that wraps up here today, even many of the classic toys and time-honored storylines had a whiz-bang, Internet-based interactivity. The latest Hot Wheels, once guided by hand by kids on their knees making vroom-vroom noises, now have chips that connect directly to the hotwheels.com community. Disney is expanding its Fairies franchise to an online Pixie Hollow, where girls can give each other eBracelets and hunt for Tinker Bell. About a dozen companies are trying to follow in the footsteps of Webkinz, which has successfully sold stuffed animals that give kids a link to a virtual world with adventures, arcade games and instant messaging. In reverse, there is finally a line of cuddly plush Neopets that have hopped out of the monitor and can receive real hugs, rather than only webby ones. Want a different virtual identity? There are games featuring cars, aliens, strong boys, frilly girls. All have safety features, such as blocking home addresses and ages, that manufacturers hope will assuage parents' fears about letting their kids go online. And there certainly are no toxins, small magnets or lead-based paints in the virtual toy world, a plus for an industry that was besieged last year by 17 product recalls covering more than 20 million items. For the industry, which uses this four-day play date to hawk its current and upcoming products, here's the best-case scenario: Kids won't want to stop playing in their online worlds. With the ever-expanding child obesity problem, that also is the worst-case scenario. IToy's ME2 (pronounced "me too," it stands for "my electronic double") grew out of a doctor's suggestion that George Irwin wear a pedometer to monitor how much exercise he was getting. Using a pedometer, ME2 keeps track of a kid's daily steps and transfers points to an avatar's power levels. Ride your bike; earn points to buy a virtual vehicle. "To develop this, we didn't talk to anyone over 25," said Irwin, the company's "toycoon," pointing to the game's Wii-like controller and 360-degree, 3-D animation interface. "The best research we got was from 9-, 10-, 11-, 12- and 13-year-old kids." His brother Peter, a co-owner, has three boys ages 7 to 14 who will "sit and stare at a screen for five hours in a row. I have to drag them away from the computer. . . . We thought, if we could find a way to create a toy that would encourage kids to find an activity, even if that activity is walking, that would be great." The ME2 is designed to be the enforcer. Want to play longer or buy online accessories? Then take a break from the virtual 3-D world. A 15-minute bike ride or 10 minutes cleaning your room will provide double benefit. Tom and Michelle Gallop of Boulder, Colo., came up with another way to get their three children away from the screen.
v., whizzed, whiz·zing, whiz·zes. v.intr.
- To make a whirring or hissing sound, as of an object speeding through air.
- To move swiftly with or as if with such a sound; rush: whizzed past on a ten-speed bike; as the days whizzed by.
To throw or spin rapidly: The pitcher whizzed the ball to first.
n., pl., whiz·zes.
- A whirring or hissing sound, as of an object speeding through air.
- A rapid passage or journey.
- Informal. One who has remarkable skill: a whiz at all sorts of games.
take a whiz Vulgar Slang.
- To urinate.
1 ((略式))ヒューッ［シュッ］と鳴る［いう, 飛ぶ］, （音を立てて）す早く動く；さっとやる
An arrow whiz(z)zed by my ear.
1 [U]ヒューッ［シュッ］という音, そのような音を立てる速い動き.
2 ((略式))（…の）名手, 達人, 切れ者((at ...))
She's a whiz(z) at math.
5 ((俗))合意, 手打ち.6 ((俗))すり.
also va·room (və-rūm', -rʊm')
The loud, roaring noise of an engine operating at high speed.
intr.v., vroomed, also va·roomed, vroom·ing, va·room·ing, vrooms, va·rooms.
To move noisily at high speed in or as if in a motor vehicle.