Raphael Varane announces himself with a classic clasico debut

The 19 year old announced himself in the Clasico with an outstanding display to help Real Madrid come from behind and keep their Copa Del Rey hopes alive...

It was one of those rare clasico's when the limelight was not on Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi after the 90 minutes. Over the years the El-Clasico has been dominated by arguably the two greatest players in the world but for once someone else stood up to take centre-stage.

Wounded by injuries and suspensions, Jose Mourinho's side had the herculean task of stopping the Catalan giants who despite resting a few players from last week's 5-1 win over Osasuna were still strong enough to challenge their fierce rivals. Madrid on the other hand started with Ricardo Carvalho and Raphael Varane in place of Sergio Ramos and Pepe whereas Jose Callejon, Micheal Essien were also included in the staring XI.

It was a game of high quality, numerous chances and sublime football from both sides. With the likes of Mesut Ozil, Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Xavi, Iniesta all on the field it was always going to be a tough task to pick out the game changer amongst them but surprisingly it was the El-Clasico debutant Raphael Varane who came up with an outstanding display to help Los Blancos come from behind to level the tie.

The 19 year old capped a colossal display in the heart of the defense with a second half header cancelling out Cesc Fabregas's opener and setting up a mouth-watering second leg at the Nou Camp. It was a perfect occasion for the French defender to take advantage of the absence of Madrid's first choice center-back pairing and he did not disappoint. His positional sense, concentration and confidence on the ball throughout the 90 minutes was outstanding and was well appreciated by everyone.
"Varane had a magnificent game, it's very hard to look that good at that age for this club. It was a pleasure to play in a match like that, it was a great spectacle." - Gerard Pique
In an era when defenders have often been criticised for giving away cheap goals and not being able to match the standards set by their legendary predecessors, Varane reminded us that the art of defending is not completely lost.

Fabregas got the all important away goal

The Frenchman denied Xavi early on when Carvalho was caught out of position by clearing the ball off the goal-line to keep the score at 0-0. He then went onto put in the tackle of the game that denied Cesc Fabregas his second of the night who was clean through on goal. Varane for most part of the game dominated Lionel Messi who was surprisingly quiet throughout the 90 minutes. Raphael Varane's debut display was arguably one of the greatest Clasico debut's and with Sergio Ramos and Pepe back in the team soon surely Mourinho will have a tough time selecting his defenders.

Although both the teams will rue their missed chances, the defensive work both sides did was impressive. Both sets of defenders have been often criticized but it was the two opposing center-backs, Varane and Gerard Pique who were arguably the best players on the pitch. Pique's last-ditch tackle to deny Cristiano Ronaldo who just needed a tap-in was outstanding and even though both sides had their moments to win the game with Xavi's free-kick and Ronaldo's header early in the second half, it was the defenders who earned the plaudits this time around.

It was a mesmerising game played at high tempo between two of European football's most decorated teams and although Madrid will have a huge task at the Nou Camp, if they can come up with a performance like this again we can be sure of another breath-taking game of football soon.


Argentina, Iran reach deal on 1994 bombing inquiry

Nineteen years after terror attack on Jewish, Buenos Aires establishment, joint Argentinean-Iranian commission established to investigate unsolved crime

Argentina announced Sunday that it had reached an agreement with Iran to establish a joint commission to investigate the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires.

Nearly 19 years ago, a suicide bomber drove a van full of explosives into the Argentina Israelite Mutual Association headquarters, killing 85 people and wounding over 300.

The attack bore similar markings to that of one that took place in 1992, which leveled Israel’s embassy in Buenos Aires, killing 29. Like the 1992 attack, the 1994 one has never been solved.

The initial investigation into the bombing was scrapped in 2005, following  accusations of corruption and incompetence by Argentine authorities, some of whom would later be charged with misconduct.

Special Prosecutor Alberto Nisman has since taken over the investigation and accused Lebanese-based Shiite terror group Hezbollah, which is sponsored by Iran and Syria, of carrying out the attack; and senior Iranian officials of planning and financing it. Nisman declined to comment on the new agreement.

Iran has refused to carry out international arrest warrants for nine people Argentina suspects were involved in the attacks. But under the agreement, it will now permit prosecutors to interrogate suspects in Tehran. The suspects include former Iranian President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, and Iran’s current defense minister, Gen. Ahmad Vahidi.

The accord stipulates that the two countries establish a five-member commission of international law experts. None can be of Argentine or Iranian nationality.

The deal, signed in Ethiopia, concluded several rounds of talks between Argentina’s Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman and his Iranian counterpart Ali Akbar Salehi.

"Eighteen years of effort have failed to advance the case or prove anything against Iran, indicating that Iran is innocent," the Tehran-based Fars news agency reported.

Buenos Aires memorial sercive for the victims 

Argentinean President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner hailed the accord as "historic."

"The attack was followed only by failures and scandals. The trial ended up a farce,” Kirchner said in a statement. "We will never allow the AMIA tragedy to be used like a chess piece in geopolitical affairs," she said, referring to the Argentine Mutual Aid Association, the center that was bombed in 1994.

Jewish groups, however, were wary of the negotiations: "Argentina is legitimizing Iran’s style of governance and getting nothing in return," Guillermo Borger, the president of the Argentine Mutual Aid Association, said.

Israeli official were reportedly "shocked" to hear that the agreement was signed.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Yigal Palmor said that Israel has "Warned the Argentineans only a short while ago not to fall into the trap that the Iranians will set up for them.

"We are stunned by this news item and we will want to receive from the Argentine government a complete picture as to what was agreed upon because this entire affair affects Israel directly.”

Special Prosecutor Alberto Nisman declined to comment on the matter.

Man City’s Balotelli enters Juventus calculations

Sky Sports suggests that Juventus have joined AC Milan in the race for Manchester City’s Mario Balotelli.
Talks about bringing the 22-year old Italian striker back to Milan are believed to be underway but now the Serie A champions have entered the equation.
It is believed that Balotelli will depart the Etihad Stadium this week but whether he continues his career in Turin or back in the familiar surroundings of the San Siro remains to be seen.

Tabata Training, Taking Cardio to the Next Level

http://www.sixpackfactory.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/tabata-workout-280x220.jpgIn the beginning we were taught that doing some kind of cardiovascular exercise for a long duration of time will help us tap into our fat and keep our heart healthy.  A few years later, we were introduced to a new form of cardio called HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training. This soon became the new and most powerful form of cardio helping us burn more calories in less time than the slow or steady state approach.
And now the bar has been raised again with the introduction of HIIT Time Protocols. The word TIME PROTOCOL simply refers to the fact that scientists and fitness experts alike have created a new protocol based on the length of TIME you spend performing the high intensity and the low intensity period of your HIIT workout. The normal ratios for a HIIT workout is 1:2, so for every 30 seconds you spend doing the high intensity interval you will have an active recovery or rest period of 60 seconds.
However, over the last few years researchers have been testing and experimenting with a number of different Time Protocols to try and create HIIT workouts that will help athletes get greater results. And so you will find protocols for long distance runners to help them run a faster 10k or protocols for swimmers to help them increase their aerobic capacity. But there is one protocol that has risen to the top, becoming extremely popular, especially if weight loss is your goal; it’s called The Tabata Protocol.

History of Tabata

The Tabata protocol was invented by Dr. Izumi Tabata and his team in Tokyo back in 1996. While testing different Time Protocols with the aim of finding ways to increase both aerobic and anaerobic conditioning in athletes they came across one called 1E1 ( The one we know as Tabata today ) that seemed to do just that. After 6 weeks of testing this protocol Dr. Tabata noted an increase of 28% in anaerobic capacity and a 14% increase in aerobic capacity. The conclusion was that you can boost your aerobic and anaerobic capacity more in just 4 minutes of doing the Tabata protocol than an hour of steady state cardio.

But Why Use Tabata

The Tabata protocol soon proved to have a few more tricks up its sleeve than just increasing one’s aerobic and anaerobic capacity. It was noted that it can increase metabolic rate for up to 24 hours, helps reduce body fat levels and even spares lean muscle mass while doing all the former. Combine all that with the fact that Tabata workouts can be done in 15 minutes or less and it is no surprise that it has become so popular amongst such a wide audience, from body builders who want to keep their fat % under control while not losing muscle mass to housewives looking to burn more fat with each workout.

How to Use it

Although the Tabata protocol was originally designed to improve the performance of Olympic Speed skaters, we as mere mortals can also use it to get amazing results. The first thing to remember is that this is an advanced protocol and it is best to build up to this through some normal HIIT protocols that might be a little easier on you. That said, performing the Tabata protocol isn’t rocket science and couldn’t be easier. It simply works on intervals of 20 seconds high intensity and 10 seconds of low intensity. You can use a normal piece of cardio equipment like a stationary bike ( Like in the original test ) or by doing some form of weight training such as the increasingly popular kettlebell swings. So after warming up for around 5 to 10 minutes you simply pick an exercise and start with the 20 seconds high intensity interval. You want to really push it here and go as fast and as hard as possible. Once your 20 seconds comes to an end you go into your rest or active recovery period. Make sure you start drinking water from the start to stay hydrated through this workout. As soon as your 10 seconds is up you are back on the 20 seconds high intensity interval and going hell for leather. You continue this until you have completed your pre-determined amount of cycles. One cycle consists of a high intensity interval of 20 seconds and a low intensity interval of 10 seconds (30 seconds in total).  The original test was completed for 4 to 8 minutes but you can even start at 2 minutes and eventually progress to 10 to 15 minutes. And that is it!

So are all other cardio now useless?

So does this mean that old fashioned slow and even HIIT cardio is now useless and should be avoided?  Not at all! See what HIIT protocol s has done is provided us with a greater arsenal to help make our cardio workouts more effective and maybe also a little less boring.
This resembles what weight lifters have done for years. For example, you don’t go into the gym and do the same number of sets and reps for every workout every time. No way! One day you will do high reps, the next low reps, and then you might throw in some forced reps, drop sets etc. Why? Well mixing things up has proven to stimulate your muscles even more and so get better results, and that is exactly what a protocol like Tabata is all about. Take note that Tabata training requires a serious amount of dedication and determination so you might want to start doing it only once or twice per week and then move onto your normal HIIT workouts or even steady state cardio for your other sessions depending on your goals.

Shakira and Gerard Piqué Welcome Baby Boy, Milan Piqué Mebarak


It’s a baby boy for Shakira and Gerard Piqué! 
“We are happy to announce the birth of Milan Piqué Mebarak, son of Shakira Mebarak and Gerard Piqué, born Jan. 22nd at 9:36 p.m. in Barcelona, Spain,” the couple announced on the singer’s website. 
Born at 6 lbs., 6 oz., the couple’s first child and his mother are both in “excellent health,” according to the hospital. 
The pair goes on to explain the name of their newborn.
“The name Milan (pronounced MEE-lahn), means dear, loving and gracious in Slavic; in Ancient Roman, eager and laborious; and in Sanskrit, unification.” 
Just like his father, baby Milan became a member of FC Barcelona at birth. And earlier today, the singer, who recently revealed her official pregnancy photos, asked fans for happy thoughts as her son’s delivery came closer. 
“I’d like to ask you all to accompany me in your prayers on this very important day of my life,” she wrote. And apparently they did well! 
Congratulations to the new parents! We can’t wait to meet him!

Angelina Jolie on Brad Pitt and Kids: “We Have a Very Normal, Grounded Home”

Angelina Jolie may wear designer dresses and walk the most luxurious of red carpets, but if you ask her, she’s not a celebrity.
In a new interview with Total Film, a British movie magazine, the 37-year-old says she, fiancé Brad Pitt and their six kids live nothing but a regular life.
“We have a very normal, very grounded home. And we’re friends, and we have a laugh with our kids,” she says, explaining, “We don’t pay attention to this view of ourselves…we just shut it out.”
 So how do she and Brad, 49, explain why they’re always photographed to their children Maddox, 12, Pax, 9, Zahara, 8, Shiloh, 6, and 4-year-old twins, Knox and Vivienne?
“We just explain to our kids that people like to take pictures of people who make movies. And that’s all it is,” she shares. “It’s not anything special about mommy and daddy—we just happen to make movies.”
In fact, it’s her brood that remind her she’s just as normal as the next mom. We’d like to sound off the TMI alert before you keep reading:
 “The great thing about having a bunch of kids is that they just remind you that you’re the person who takes them to go poop,” the Oscar winner says. “That’s who you are!”
As for her engagement to Brad Pitt, Angie likens their status to adopting her kids.
“I'm not somebody that thinks about destiny and fate, but I don't walk away from it when something unfolds," she says. "It's like my children. Especially when you adopt in some countries. All my other children were just, 'This is the child that's been chosen for you.'”

“I suppose it’s like a child you give birth to, as you can’t have a say in it,” she continues. “I see that when I look at my kids. It just seems to be right. It’s hard to understand how it could unfold so beautifully.”

iPhone vs. Android: Cold-Weather Texting Smackdown

The mobile wars can get pretty hostile. It seems as though iPhone users and Android fans are always at odds over battery life, customization, integration and other gripes.
We pit the two platforms against each other in a cruel texting challenge, set in the bitter 16-degree cold that's gripped New York City and much of the northeastern U.S. this week. Which phone can compute text faster when our interns really, really need it? Check out the video above to see who wins.
Got any tricks for texting in bad weather? Tell us in the comments below.

Sure Way To Get Fired: Post ‘I Wish I Could Get Fired Some Days’ On Facebook

Facebook-fired2We've all had work days in which we wished we'd be asked to leave and never come back. Then comes the hard-hitting reality that unemployment is about as bad as it gets in the professional world.
Phoenix resident Amy McClenathan, who is still heartbroken over the loss of her mother, learned this lesson after updating her Facebook status with the confession, "I wish I could get fired some days, it would be easier to be at home than to have to go through this."
Whether you're Facebook friends with anyone from work or not, a comment of this nature never brings anything good, and McClenathan wound up losing her job.

"It was a very small sentence, but it was one of the most powerful sentences I've ever typed in my life," she said.
"It was a very small sentence, but it was one of the most powerful sentences I've ever typed in my life," she said. She added that she'd posted the remark around the one-year anniversary of her mom's passing. You'd think she'd get a pass, but the woman was asked to leave the day following her Facebook status update.
On top of it all, her firing may not have even been warranted. Phoenix attorney Dan Barr told AZ Family that the woman's post could very well be protected by the law:
"If the employer reprimands you for discussing your job on Facebook, that can run afoul of the National Labor Relations Act…"If you were to post on Facebook, I work for a bunch of crooks or company X is the worst place in the world to work, that would not be protected. If you post on Facebook I was cheated out of a bonus or that I'm working too many hours and other employees respond and you get a conversation started about that, that counts."
Even so, McClenathan takes responsibility for what she wrote, and if you want to keep your job (as awful as it may seem some days), you should probably do the same.

One 3D Printer's Astonishing Kickstarter Success

Consumers are always on the lookout for truly innovative products, and this is no different with Formlabs, maker of a low-cost 3D printer that was embraced before it even came to market. But along with innovation often comes ethical or legal issues, and for the founders of Formlabs, that issue is the potential to use printers to create plastic guns.
The Formlabs team behind this innovative product are three MIT graduate students Maxim Lobovsky, David Cranor and Nate Linder. The three met in 2009 in MIT's "How to Make (Almost) Anything" class, and founded Formlabs together in September 2011.
Formlabs shattered its $100,000 goal on Kickstarter, and raised $2,945,885 — making the Form 1 3D printer the highest-funded tech campaign in Kickstarter history. The Form 1 can be pre-ordered at the discounted price of $3,299 through its website. Your products will be delivered in May; all pre-orders for April delivery are already sold out. Most 3D printers cost tens of thousands of dollars, so $3,299 is extremely low-cost, to put that price in perspective.

 If you've ever wanted to print 3D objects at home on-demand, now is your chance. Formlabs has completed development of the Form 1 3D printer, which is said to revolutionize the 3D printing landscape. Although there are a lot of 3D printers in the market today, the Form 1 is innovative and affordable compared with similar products — it is the highest-resolution low-cost 3D printer and uniquely uses a process called stereolithography.
We chatted with Maxim Lobovsky, who comments on Formlabs' Kickstarter success, offers some advice for aspiring tech startups and briefly touches on potential legal issues with 3D printing. Read on for the highlights.

Q&A With Maxim Lobovsky, Co-Founder of Formlabs

These days, we're seeing more and more 3D printers on the market — what differentiates the Form 1?
The Form 1 is interesting for a couple reasons: 1) It is the highest resolution desktop printer available by far, and the reason for that is it uses a different process than any of the other desktop printers out there. It uses a process called stereolithography, as opposed to all the other low cost machines that use a process called fused deposition modeling (FDM) and our process allows for much higher accuracy and smaller features, and smoother surfaces than the FDM process does. We brought the technology which is gold standard to 3D printing and was only available in more expensive printers; we brought that down to a desktop and low cost. The other reason is that we made a complete end-to-end system with the software, machine, materials everything designed to work together, work out of the box; it's not meant to be maintained by the user. And in the end it is in a different class from the other desktop machines out there which are really kind of hobbyist, with our machine the goal is the get great quality output and use it in some other project.
How do you see the Form 1 changing the tech landscape?
I think there are a lot of applications for 3D printing and Form 1 will contribute to all of those: prototyping for new products, one-off parts for manufacturing and research, art or jewelry applications; we'll do all of those things but what we're most excited about is how we'll actually help people doing what we did, which is doing product development on a shoestring budget, launching on Kickstarter and stuff like that. This is actually the perfect tool for people doing a lot of work like that, so it's kind of a virtuous circle that we've built.
Can you shed some light on your incredible success with Kickstarter?
I think Kickstarter worked really well for us. Initially we were worried that Kickstarter wasn't perfectly aligned for the prosumer, higher-end product that we wanted to produce because it sort of looks a little hobbyist and informal. But I think it worked out great. We really focused on looking professional and showcasing the product and why it's innovative. We put a lot of effort into nice photography and a good video, but you know in the end it really comes down to people recognizing that this is a new and interesting product, and that's the most important thing.

 Why did your team decide to use Kickstarter instead of similar platforms, like IndieGoGo?
I think Kickstarter is the premier platform at this point; it has the biggest user base and more importantly for us, because it does some amount of curation of its projects it generally has higher quality content I would say, and it's important for us that we're seen in that light.
What social platforms did you leverage to build awareness of the campaign?
We tried to build it up before the launch by putting up the pre-launch website and doing teaser stuff on Twitter and that helped to get a number of people ready to go for when we launched. I think that is important because Kickstarter is a self-fulfilling prophecy, if you do well on the first day you get press not just about your product but about how well you did on the first day. I don't know if it's true, but it seems like how well you do on the first day really defines the rest of the campaign. So it is important to be ready to go.
What tips could you give to other tech campaigns using Kickstarter? Tech campaigns are the second category least likely to reach their funding goals on Kickstarter, only above dance.

Honestly I think that's a good thing and maybe the ratio needs to be even lower, because I think typically people aren't raising enough money or charging high enough prices for their actual hardware products on Kickstarter
Honestly I think that's a good thing and maybe the ratio needs to be even lower, because I think typically people aren't raising enough money or charging high enough prices for their actual hardware products on Kickstarter. Especially if it is your first product, people categorically always underestimate all the costs it's going to take to deliver their product. To generalize, some advice I could give is you have to prove that you can deliver on your product and it will do what you say.
Most people have a good idea for a product that somebody wants, and that part is maybe the less hard part, the harder part is convincing people that you can do it and it really is what you say it is. The biggest thing is to do everything well from the graphic design to the video — high production quality is important. One thing we did and what other successful campaigns have done was to get industry experts or people recognized in the field to talk about your video and your product, I think it helps to get a lot of third party approval. The biggest thing is tech projects need to get more serious about thinking about what is it actually going to take to deliver the project they want and on what timeframe.
Are you worried about any upcoming legal action on 3D printers? Could Joe Schmoe be allowed to print a gun, for example?
I think 3D printing is definitely going to bring up some interesting questions, copyright and things like that; we're following it as closely as anybody. Honestly, I think people may be overblowing the whole situation, I'm generally optimistic and I think things will work out generally positively. On the gun issue, 3D printers will change some of that, but generally you can do with 3D printers what you could do with other tools before, so I don't think 3D printers in everybody's home means there are going to be guns everywhere. That's not the case.
Watch the video below to see the Form 1 3D printer in action. What would you print if you had a 3D printer? Let us know in the comments below.

40 Digital Media Resources You May Have Missed

At the end of a bitter cold week, there's nothing better than kicking back at home with a warm blanket and the features you may have missed during the past few days. Read on for coverage of Obama's inauguration and some cool tips to help you land your next job.
We've got everything you need to know about Twitter's new Vine app, as well as highlights from all major tech and social-media news. There's no reason to go outside and brave that cold snap — sit back at home and get yourself caught up.

Editor's Picks

Social Media

Business & Marketing

Tech & Mobile


Irish police launch hunt for gang after detective shot dead

Four men being sought by Gardai after Adrian Donohoe killed in attempted armed robbery of credit union near Dundalk
Irish police man a checkpoint near the scene where a detective was shot dead in Dundalk
Irish police man a checkpoint near the scene where a detective was shot dead near Dundalk. Photograph: Julien Behal/PA

Irish police have launched a hunt for the gang responsible for killing a detective during an attempted armed robbery near Dundalk.
The Garda detective, who has been named as Adrian Donohoe, was shot dead in a botched hold-up of a credit union near the border with Northern Ireland around 9.30pm on Friday.
Garda sources said that after shooting the police officer the raiders seized the stolen money and drove off. Four men, who are believed to have fled the scene in a grey Volkswagen Passat, are being sought by the force.
Armed patrols were deployed throughout the region overnight and the Police Service of Northern Ireland has been asked for assistance in case the gang fled over the border.
The Irish president, Michael D Higgins, has described the killing as "a dreadful crime" that the whole country would be "truly appalled by".
The Sinn Féin president and County Louth representative, Gerry Adams, said he was deeply shocked by the detective's murder. "I extend my deepest sympathies to his family and colleagues, and appeal to those with information about this crime to co-operate with the Gardai," he said.
Jim Loughran, a Sinn Féin councillor in the part of County Louth where the shooting took place, described Donohoe as a quiet family man. "I just spoke to him last week on the street in town. I can't believe this has happened," he said. "This was not just an attack on a Garda detective, it was an attack on the whole community."
Donohoe is understood to have been married with three children. He lived just over half a mile from the scene of the attack.
The Irish justice minister, Alan Shatter. said: "The Irish people … will share my revulsion and horror that a garda has so tragically lost his life in the course of his duties."
The Lordship Credit Union, where the killing took place, was described as a hub of the small community. It is believed staff were locking up when the incident occurred.
Councillor Declan Breathnach said it was not unusual for it to remain open late. "It would be fairly busy on a Friday evening, with some people just getting their week's pay or wanting to sort out money for the weekend," Breathnach said. "This was just such a despicable, heinous act. I still can't believe it but I utterly condemn it."
Fianna Fail justice spokesman, Niall Collins, pledged his party's full support to Garda commissioner, Martin Callinan.
Gardai have appealed for witnesses to contact them at Dundalk garda station.
Official statistics have shown that crime, apart from burglary, has been falling since the republic's economic downturn started in 2007-08, although gun crime among gangs, particularly in Dublin, has continued to make headlines.
The death of the Garda officer comes 17 years after a detective was shot by members of the Provisional IRA while he was taking part in an escort for a cash delivery to a post office in County Limerick.
John Parker, president of the Garda Representative Association, said: "This dreadful news is what every police family fears. At this time the wider garda family will be doing everything possible to support the late garda's relatives and loved ones, friends and colleagues."

Anonymous Hacks U.S. Government Site, Threatens Supreme 'Warheads'

Anonymous Hacks U.S. Government Site, Threatens Supreme 'Warheads'

The hacktivist group Anonymous hacked the US federal sentencing website early Saturday, using the page to make a brazen and boisterous declaration of "war" on the U.S. government.
The group claims mysterious code-based "warheads", named for each of the Supreme Court Justices, are about to be deployed.
As of midnight Pacific time, the front page of Ussc.gov — the Federal agency that establishes sentencing policies and practices for the Federal courts — is filled with a long screed in green on black, together with this YouTube video:

All areas of ussc.gov other than the front page appear to be functioning normally. In other words, there's no denial of service attack or widespread vandalism. (Update, an hour later: it's getting a little slow and has all the hallmarks of a DDoS.)
At the bottom of the page is a series of nine files, mirrored three times. Each file is named for a current U.S. Supreme Court Justice.
The statement opens with a lament for Aaron Swartz, the Reddit programmer and Internet activist who committed suicide earlier this month. Promising revenge for his treatment at the hands of a federal prosecutor, the screed veers into some of the most inflammatory — dare we say hyperbolic — language we've seen on a simple front page hack.
The group talks of planting "multiple warheads" on "compromised systems" on various unnamed websites, and encourages members to download a given file from ussc.gov that is "primed, armed and quietly distributed to numerous mirrors." It has given the warhead "launch" the name of "Operation Last Resort," the text said:
There has been a lot of fuss recently in the technological media regarding such operations as Red October, the widespread use of vulnerable browsers and the availability of zero-day exploits for these browsers and their plugins. None of this comes of course as any surprise to us, but it is perhaps good that those within the information security industry are making the extent of these threats more widely understood.
Still there is nothing quite as educational as a well-conducted demonstration...
Through this websites and various others that will remain unnamed, we have been conducting our own infiltration. We did not restrict ourselves like the FBI to one high-profile compromise. We are far more ambitious, and far more capable. Over the last two weeks we have wound down this operation, removed all traces of leakware from the compromised systems, and taken down the injection apparatus used to detect and exploit vulnerable machines.
We have enough fissile material for multiple warheads. Today we are launching the first of these. Operation Last Resort has begun...
Here's the list of files the group is encouraging its followers to download:

What's in the files, and does it have anything to do with the recent "Red October" series of security breaches, thought to be prevalent in China and Russia? Anonymous plays coy:
The contents are various and we won't ruin the speculation by revealing them. Suffice it to say, everyone has secrets, and some things are not meant to be public. At a regular interval commencing today, we will choose one media outlet and supply them with heavily redacted partial contents of the file. Any media outlets wishing to be eligible for this program must include within their reporting a means of secure communications.
We have not taken this action lightly, nor without consideration of the possible consequences. Should we be forced to reveal the trigger-key to this warhead, we understand that there will be collateral damage. We appreciate that many who work within the justice system believe in those principles that it has lost, corrupted, or abandoned, that they do not bear the full responsibility for the damages caused by their occupation.
It is our hope that this warhead need never be detonated.
What "collateral damage" is the hacktivist group talking about — and is there anything to their threats? We're continuing to update this story, but give us your take in the comments.
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Optical Camouflage: Altered Reality

Active camouflage provides concealment in two important ways: firstly, it makes the camouflaged object appear not merely similar to its surroundings, but effectively invisible through the use of mimicry; secondly, active camouflage changes the appearance of the object as changes occur in the background. Ideally, active camouflage mimics nearby objects as well as objects as distant as the horizon.

Optical camouflage delivers a similar experience to Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak, but using it requires a slightly complicated arrangement. First, the person who wants to be invisible (let’s call him Harry) dons a garment that resembles a hooded raincoat. The garment is made of a special material that we’ll examine more closely in a moment.

As you can see in this image, the experience closely resembles walking directly in front of a movie projection screen, only with a real background.
Next, an observer (let’s call him Professor Snape) stands before Harry at a specific location. At that location, instead of seeing Harry wearing a hooded raincoat, Snape sees right through the cloak, making Harry appear to be invisible. The above photograph shows you what Snape would see. And if Snape stepped to the side and viewed Harry from a slightly different location? Why, he’d simply see the boy wizard wearing a silver garment. Scowls and detentions would likely follow. Lucky for Harry, his fictional cloak affords 360-degree protection.
Optical camouflage doesn’t work by way of magic. It works by taking advantage of something called augmented-reality technology — a type of technology first pioneered in the 1960s by Ivan Sutherland and his students at Harvard University and the University of Utah. You can read more about augmented reality in How Augmented Reality Works, but a quick recap will be helpful here.

Augmented-reality systems add computer-generated information to a user’s sensory perceptions. Imagine, for example, that you’re walking down a city street. As you gaze at sites along the way, additional information appears to enhance and enrich your normal view. Perhaps it’s the day’s specials at a restaurant or the showtimes at a theater or the bus schedule at the station. What’s critical to understand is that augmented reality is not the same as virtual reality. While virtual reality aims to replace the world, augmented reality merely tries to supplement it with additional, helpful content. Think of it as a heads-up display (HUD) for everyday life.
Most augmented-reality systems require a user to look through a special viewing apparatus to see a real-world scene enhanced with synthesized graphics. They also call for a powerful computer. Optical camouflage requires these things as well, but it also necessitates several other components. Here’s everything needed to make a person appear invisible:
  1. a garment made from highly reflective material
  2. a digital video camera
  3. a computer
  4. a projector
  5. a special, half-silvered mirror called a combiner

More Invisibility Cloak Components :

For the rest of the setup, the video camera needs to be positioned behind the subject to capture the background. The computer takes the captured image from the video camera, calculates the appropriate perspective and transforms the captured image into the picture that will be projected onto the retro-reflective material.
The projector then shines the modified image on the garment, by shining a light beam through an opening controlled by a device called an iris diaphragm. This diaphragm is made of thin, opaque plates, and turning a ring changes the diameter of the central opening. For optical camouflage to work properly, this opening must be the size of a pinhole. Why? This ensures a larger depth of field so that the screen (in this case the cloak) can be located any distance from the projector.
Finally, the overall system requires a special mirror to both reflect the projected image toward the cloak and to let light rays bouncing off the cloak return to the user’s eye. This special mirror is called a beam splitter, or a combiner — a half-silvered mirror that both reflects light (the silvered half) and transmits light (the transparent half).
If properly positioned in front of the user’s eye, the combiner allows the user to perceive both the image enhanced by the computer and light from the surrounding world. This is critical because the computer-generated image and the real-world scene must be integrated fully for the illusion of invisibility to seem realistic. The user has to look through a peephole in this mirror to see the augmented reality.

The Complete Invisibility System :

Now let’s put all of these components together to see how the invisibility cloak appears to make a person transparent. The diagram below shows the typical arrangement of all the various devices and pieces of equipment.
Once a person puts on the cloak made with the retro-reflective material, here’s the sequence of events:
  1. A digital video camera captures the scene behind the person wearing the cloak.
  2. The computer processes the captured image and makes the calculations necessary to adjust the still image or video so it will look realistic when it is projected.
  3. The projector receives the enhanced image from the computer and shines the image through a pinhole-sized opening onto the combiner.
  4. The silvered half of the mirror, which is completely reflective, bounces the projected image toward the person wearing the cloak.
  5. The cloak acts like a movie screen, reflecting light directly back to the source, which in this case is the mirror.
  6. Light rays bouncing off the cloak pass through the transparent part of the mirror and fall on the user’s eyes. Remember that the light rays bouncing off the cloak contain the image of the scene that exists behind the person wearing the cloak.
The person wearing the cloak appears invisible because the background scene is being displayed onto the retro-reflective material. At the same time, light rays from the rest of the world are allowed to reach the user’s eye, making it seem as if an invisible person exists in an otherwise normal-looking world.

Real-world Invisibility Applications :

The words “invisibility cloak” tends to summon images of fantastic adventure, magical espionage and otherworldly deception. The actual applications for optical camouflage, however, are far less out there. You can forget hiding your Romulan starship or hanging out in the lady wizards’ dormitory, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a number of viable uses for the technology.
For instance, pilots landing a plane could use this technology to make cockpit floors transparent. This would enable them to see the runway and the landing gear simply by glancing down at the floor (which would display the view from the outside of the fuselage) Similarly, drivers wouldn’t have to deal with mirrors and blind spots. Instead, they could just “look through” the entire rear of the vehicle. The technology even boasts potential applications in the medical field, as surgeons could use optical camouflage to see through their hands and instruments for an unobstructed view of the underlying tissue.
Interestingly enough, one possible application of this technology actually revolves around making objects more visible. The concept is called mutual telexistence and essentially involves projecting a remote user’s appearance onto a robot coated in retro-reflective material. Say a surgeon were operating on a patient via remote control robotic surgery. Mutual telexistence would provide the human doctors assisting the procedure with the perception that they’re working with another human instead of a machine.
Right now, mutual telexistence is science fiction, but scientists continue to push the boundaries of the technology. For example, pervasive gaming is already becoming a reality. Pervasive gaming extends gaming experiences out into the real world, whether on city streets or in remote wilderness. Players with mobile displays move through the world while sensors capture information about their environment, including their location. This information delivers a gaming experience that changes according to where users are and what they are doing.
Optical camouflage is just one method of creating the sensation of invisibility.

Hazard sent off for kicking ball boy as Chelsea frustrations boil over

The youngster had refused to return the ball quickly with time running out in the Blues' Capital One Cup semifinal at Swansea, prompting an angry reaction from the Belgian



Eden Hazard was sent off in Chelsea's Capital One Cup semifinal 0-0 draw against Swansea for kicking a ball boy.

The youngster had refused to return the ball to play quickly as it went behind the goal, and ended up laid on top of the ball as the Belgian came to confront him. With the ball trapped under his body, Hazard attempted to kick the ball out from underneath him, but also caught the child in the ribs.

After much deliberation, referee Chris Foy brandished the red card, and Hazard will face at least a three-match ban.

Chelsea's official Twitter account reacted incredulously to the decision, saying: "Has football gone mad? Hazard is sent off for kicking the ball under a ball boy attempting to smother the ball rather than return it."

Swans skipper Ashley Williams also commented on the incident after the game, blasting the Belgian's actions.

"Demba Ba told me that the boy held onto it but I saw him kick him in the ribs and you can't do that," he told Sky Sports

Real Madrid and Barcelona continue to dominate soccer rich list as Manchester City enters top 10

The Spanish giants continue to be the benchmark in the Football Money League as they have expanded their lead over the top clubs from England, Germany and Italy



  • Real Madrid crowned as world's richest club for eighth year in a row
  • Top-six placings remain unchanged
  • Clubs from five different countries in top 20
  • Manchester City, Borussia Dortmund and Napoli climb most places (5)
  • EPL has most representatives
  • Italy continues to struggle
  • Combined revenues grow 10 percent
Real Madrid and Barcelona once more dominate football’s rich list as the Spanish duo are still miles ahead of their rivals from England, Germany, Italy and France. According to the 2012 Deloitte Football Money League, published on Thursday, the Liga giants remain the only clubs with annual revenue over 450 million euros.

Real Madrid tops the Football Money League for the eighth year in succession, thus equalling Manchester United’s dominance in the top position during the first eight years of the Money League, and became the first club in any sport to surpass the 500 millions euro revenue threshold in a single year. 

"It is an impressive achievement for Real Madrid to have surpassed 500 million euros in revenue in a single year. Real have led the way in the phenomenal rate of revenue growth achieved by the game’s top clubs," Dan Jones, Partner in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte said.

However, the reigning Spanish champions are being chased hard by archrival Barcelona, whose growth in 2011-12 leaves the club only 17m euros short of the 500m euro mark. Even though the Catalans couldn’t quite match their on-pitch success from 2010-11, the club enjoyed 32.3m euro (seven percent) revenue growth. 

United’s failure to qualify for the knockout stages of the Champions League in 2011-12 meant it was unable to prevent a Spanish one-two for the fourth successive year, but Sir Alex Ferguson's side remains the proud No. 3 in the rankings.

For the fifth successive year, the clubs comprising the top six places in the Money League remain the same. 

"An unchanged top six emphasises the fact that these clubs have some of the largest fanbases and hence strongest revenues, in both domestic and international markets," Jones commented.

The Money League top 20 again comprises clubs from the ‘big five’ European leagues, seven of which come from the English Premier League, while Italy has five teams in the top 20, and Germany four. Spain and France, meanwhile, has to settle for two representatives each.

"It’s always interesting to see the disparity between the top two in Spain and the rest of the league. There are no other Spanish clubs in the top 20. A key change that would improve the overall state of finances in Spanish football would be a collective broadcast deal. It sounds like the Spanish government have put collective payments on the agenda on that level which, if it happens, can only help with the competitiveness of the division," Mark Roberts, Senior Consultant within the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, stated.

The top 10 consists of teams from only four leagues, as Ligue 1 sides Olympique de Marseille and Olympique Lyonnais sit only 16th and 17th respectively.

Manchester City (seventh) is this year’s joint highest climbers, along with Borussia Dortmund (11th) and Napoli (15th), moving up five places and claiming a top 10 position for the first time.


1. Real Madrid
2. Barcelona
3. Manchester Utd
4. Bayern Munich
5. Chelsea
6. Arsenal
7. Manchester City
8. AC Milan
9. Liverpool
10. Juventus

"City’s Premier League title-winning season combined with participation in the Champions League, helped drive 51 percent revenue growth to 285.6m euros, the largest absolute and relative growth of any Money League club," Austin Houlihan, Senior Manager in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, said.

As pointed out before, the English Premier League has the most representatives, and this situation seems unlikely to change any time soon.

"The Premier League still has the most representatives in the top 20 of the list. Clubs will get another 20-30m euros from the new broadcasting deal so in the future there will be more English clubs challenging for those positions. The most there has been in the list is eight but I think we could be seeing as much of half of the list represented by the Premier League," Roberts pointed out.

Italy's future on the other hand seems far less rosy as the nation's facilities generally don't match its reputation.

"The poor financial performance of Italian clubs goes back to their matchday revenues. Juventus have benefited from their new stadium, which increased their matchday income by about 20m euros. For the Milan clubs and the Rome clubs, the stadia is a limiting factor on their revenue generation. They simply don’t have the facilities and don’t get the gates to compete with matchday incomes in other countries. Italy has gone to collective selling of broadcasting and that is a positive start in improving that," said Roberts.

The combined revenues of the world’s 20 highest earning football clubs have grown 10 percent on the previous year to reach 4.8 billion euros in 2011-12.

"The combined revenues of the top 20 clubs have quadrupled since we began our analysis in 1996-97," Jones explained.    

“Whilst eight of the top 20 clubs experienced a drop in revenue in 2011-12, in most cases this was due to less successful on-pitch performances in European club competitions, rather than wider recessionary impacts. 

"Combined, the 20 Money League clubs contribute over one-quarter of the total revenues of the European football market.  The top 20 can be expected to generate over 5bn euros between them in 2012-13."
Commenting on the impact of UEFA’s financial fair play break-even requirement, Paul Rawnsley, a Director in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte said:

"Whilst the Money League covers clubs’ revenue performance, there is an increasing focus within European football on clubs achieving more sustainable levels of expenditure relative to revenues, particularly given UEFA's financial fair play break-even requirement.    

"Disciplined and responsible governance structures and financial management within European football, whilst providing the platform for investment in facilities and youth development, should only be encouraged."

All revenue figures in the Money League report are based on the 2011-12 season or the most recent available calendar year.

It focuses on each club's revenues from day to day football operations, including matchday ticket and corporate hospitality sales, broadcast rights revenues including distributions from participation in European club competitions, sponsorship, merchandising, and other commercial operations, but excluding transfer income.

Ronaldinho in, Kaka out for Brazil's squad to face England

The 32-year-old makes his return to the international fold for the first time in 12 months, while Neymar, David Luiz, Ramires and Oscar are also included in the 20-man squad.



Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari has named Ronaldinho in his 20-man squad for his side's friendly against England in February.

The 32-year-old last appeared for Selecao in February 2012, in a 2-1 friendly win over Bosnia and Herzegovina, but he now has the chance of adding to his 94 international caps under new head coach Scolari. Kaka, who had made an international resurgence under former Brazil boss Mano Menezes, was left off the roster.

Bayern Munich defender Dante receives his first call up to the international fold thanks to his fantastic form for the club since moving from Borussia Monchengladbach in the summer. Elsewhere, there are four Premier League-based representatives in the squad, with QPR goalkeeper Julio Cesar and Chelsea trio David Luiz, Ramires and Oscar.

Santos star Neymar will also be part of the squad that faces England at Wembley Stadium on Feb. 6.

Here is the Brazil squad in full:

Julio Cesar - QPR
Diego Alves - Valencia

Dante - Bayern
David Luiz - Chelsea
Miranda - Atletico Madrid
Leandro Castan - Roma
Adriano - Barcelona
Daniel Alves - Barcelona
Felipe Luís - Atlético de Madrid

Arouca - Santos
Hernanes - Lazio
Ramires - Chelsea
Oscar - Chelsea
Lucas - PSG
Paulinho - Corinthians

Fred - Fluminense
Hulk - Zenit
Neymar - Santos
Ronaldinho Gaúcho - Atletico-MG
Luis Fabiano - São Paulo 

Revealed: Barcelona use secret weapon in Neymar hunt

The Blaugrana hope flying full-back Dani Alves can convince his friend and Brazil team-mate to make the switch to Camp Nou, despite keen interest from the likes of Bayern Munich

Dani Alves Neymar

Barcelona have deployed Dani Alves as their secret weapon in the battle to sign Brazil superstar Neymar.

The 20-year-old is the most wanted player in world football and the Catalan club are desperate to fight off competition from Manchester City, Chelsea and Bayern Munich as the race hots up for his signature.

The Blaugrana have already indicated they are willing to pay Santos' 60m release clause for their playmaker and have now launched a charm offensive led by Neymar's Brazilian compatriot Dani Alves.

According to Goal.com sources, the relationship between the pair is excellent, to the extent that Neymar treats the Barca right-back “like a big brother” and seriously considers his advice both on and off the pitch.

Alves has made it his personal mission to convince his Seleçao team-mate to join him at club level as well. Goal.com also understands that Alves recently called Neymar to tell him about his fantastic experience as a Barca player and, since then, has not stopped insisting that the team would be unstoppable if the Santos attacker were to join forces with players such as Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta.

Barcelona's courtship of Neymar has also involved club president Sandro Rosell who, over the last two years, has been trying to convince the mercurial youngster that the Camp Nou environment is best for his development.
 Tito Vilanova's side remain in pole position to sign Neymar, but the deal is far from certain.

There is now a strong possibility that the player will run out his contract with Santos, which ends in 2014, as the playmaker's sponsors, who include the Brazilian government and the main Brazilian bank, want him to play at his best in the World Cup.

His backers believe that a move next summer could be a major risk in case he does not adapt quickly to the demands of the European game.

As a consequence, and under Fifa regulations, any club could snatch the player for free as early as January 2014. Given Manchester City, Chelsea and Bayern Munich are also in the market, such a bidding war is a situation that Barca desperately want to avoid.

Neymar has also been quoted as saying that he would be interested in playing for Pep Guardiola when he takes over as Bayern Munich coach.


Damiao, Centurion & the South American stars who could be moving to Europe in January

Goal.com presents the hottest talents from Argentina, Brazil and the rest of the continent who could be emigrating across the Atlantic Ocean before the end of the month


Leandro Damiao - Internacional (Getty Images)

Across South America, the continent's biggest stars are braving the suffocating summer heat as they prepare for the new season to begin. For many top talents, however, January also means their agents' phones will be red-hot as Europe's top clubs search for the new arrival that could make all the difference for the second half of the season.

The journey across the Atlantic Ocean is already well-worn as the most promising prospects from Argentina, Brazil and the rest of the football-mad region seek their fortunes away from home, and the first transfer window of 2013 will surely be no different. Indeed, the transfers are already in motion; Lucas Moura set the ball rolling by completing a lucrative move to Paris Saint-Germain and earning former club Sao Paulo a cool €45 million in transfer fees.

Goal.com takes a look at five men who could soon be appearing in Serie A, La Liga and Europe's other top divisions, introducing South America's top you


AC Milan, Real Madrid & Kaka all want a deal to happen, says Galliani

The Rossoneri director has stressed that all parties involved have the same objective, but stressed that they will all have to make sacrifices if the transfer is to go ahead


Ricardo Kakà - Real Madrid
Getty Images
AC Milan CEO Adriano Galliani has revealed that negotiations with Real Madrid over Kaka are progressing, with the trio all keen on making the move happen in January.

The 68-year-old stated on Thursday that a transfer could prove to be very difficult, but the Rossoneri director now seems slightly more optimistic about a return to San Siro for the attacking midfielder.

"Negotiations are ongoing. Milan, Real Madrid and Kaka himself are all keen to finalise the deal," Galliani told reporters.

"We will have to be creative to find a solution, though, as it is a complicated deal. All parties have a common objective, but we're talking about big figures. We will all have to make sacrifices."

The 30-year-old left Milan for Madrid in the summer of 2009 after a successful six-year spell at San Siro, but failed to live up to the high expectations at the Blancos.

Kaka has made only seven La Liga appearances this term, failing to find the net in any of them.


Valdes tells Barcelona he will not renew his contract

Valdes tells Barcelona he will not renew his contract


Víctor Valdés

Victor Valdes has informed Barcelona he will not renew his contract when it expires in 2014, according to the player's representatives.

Camp Nou chiefs held talks with agents of the Spain international on Thursday and the Catalan club had hoped to persuade the goalkeeper to extend his lifelong association with the club.

However, it now appears certain the 31-year-old will leave at the end of next season following the release of a statement on Thursday evening.

"Victor Valdes' agents have told Barcelona, in the meeting held this afternoon, of the irrevocable decision from the player not to renew his contract, thus avoiding discussing future wage issues," his representatives told Spanish news agency EFE.

Valdes' contract expires on June 30, 2014, and he could well make a move away from La Liga after recently expressing his desire to experience "other cultures".

However, he had also revealed at the start of January his intention to retire at Barca, an opinion that has clearly changed since.

The current Liga leaders' sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta had thought that Valdes had every intention of remaining at Camp Nou.

Reports in the winter transfer window have linked Manchester United shot-stopper David de Gea with a move back to the Primera Division, having left Atletico Madrid in 2011.

The Blaugrana are yet to comment on the Valdes news, with a pre-match press conference due to be held on Friday ahead of their clash with Real Sociedad on Saturday.


NO Equipment Muscle Building Home Workout

Pregnant Jessica Simpson: Hires Personal Weight Watchers Chef (EXCLUSIVE)

NBC; Splash
After reaching 210 pounds in her first pregnancy with daughter Maxwell, Jessica Simpson is taking a new approach to her second pregnancy.

A source close to the pregnant star tells Life & Style, on newsstands now, “She hasn’t quite lost all the weight from her previous pregnancy, so she wants to gain only 25 to 30 pounds this time.” The source continues, “She wants to be healthy.”
VIDEO: Jessica Simpson and Jennifer Hudson join forces for new Weight Watchers ad

And though she definitely won’t be dieting during her pregnancy, Jessica has decided to keep the personal chef she hired while on Weight Watchers. “She learned a lot while losing the weight she gained with Maxwell,” a friend adds. “She knows about empty calories and portion control. Before, she knew very little about nutrition.”

Her healthy approach seems to be paying off. While vacationing with her fiancé, Eric Johnson, the star snapped a picture of her growing baby bump for the world to see on Twitter, which has only helped prove how determined she is to keep her weight in check during this pregnancy.
PHOTO: Pregnant Jessica Simpson flaunts baby bump

After giving birth later this year, Jessica plans to return to her Weight Watchers diet.

2013's Music Comebacks

Justin Timberlake

The former boy-bander brought SexyBack in 2006. But in 2013, Mr. Timberlake is reviving his music career! Justin, who has focused much of his time on acting in recent years, explains, "I don't want to put anything out that I feel like is something I don't love." But now, he says, "I'm ready."

Lady Gaga

Although she's been touring the globe for over a year on the Born This Way Ball, Lady Gaga has also been hard at work recording a new album in between shows. She plans to release her third album "ARTPOP" in the spring. Of her new music, Mother Monster tells her fans, "ARTPOP is very risky."



After giving birth in the fall, the "Someone Like You" crooner is reportedly back in the studio working on the follow-up to her massively successful 2011 release, 21. Adele is "ready to start working hard straight away," says a source. "The album could even be released later this year."

Destinys Child 

"I am so proud to announce the first original Destiny's Child music in eight years!" says Beyoncé. The 31-year-old superstar and mother to Blue Ivy is reuniting with Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams! Their album, Love Songs, will include the new Pharrell-produced track "Nuclear."

Britney Spears 

She may have left her spot on the X Factor judging panel, but that doesn't mean Britney is taking a break. The pop princess reveals to fans she is already working on new tunes. "I'm seeing so much chatter about new music out there," says Brit. "Lot of work to do in 2013! LETS GO!" 

'I have no agreement with Barcelona' - Neymar

The Brazilian starlet has denied rumours that Santos have already completed a deal with the Catalan giants that would see him join the club either next summer or in 2014

 Neymar - Santos FC

  Neymar has dismissed reports of a pre-existing agreement that will see him move from Santos to Barcelona, reaffirming his commitment to his current club.