Archive for March, 2014


A few weeks back, BlackBerry introduced BBM Stickers in beta form. Things have been moving along and the beta was very well received, so starting next week a new version of BBM will hit all platforms (BlackBerry, iOS and Android) that will include BBM Stickers, sponsored BBM Channels and other new features. The BBM team is going full-steam ahead to keep parity on all the platforms and to keep adding new & upgraded features across the board.

BBM Stickers
BBM Stickers are essentially larger emoticons that users can share across all their BBM chats. The stickers bring a new level to BBM allowing for more fun and personality than just standard text. They are bigger and cooler than the standard emoticons and will bring BBM chats to a new level. Many other services have already implemented stickers within chats, so it’s great to see that BBM is right along with them as stickers like this within IM clients are huge in some parts of the world.

At launch, the update will include the BBM Shop where users can download virtual goods that include various sticker packs — each of which will contain between 20-25 stickers. The packs will each have a specific theme, including the likes of CosCat, Bubble Bot, WWE and Shaun the Sheep for starters. BlackBerry will also offer a sticker pack based on favorite BBM emoticons. To start, the packs will be offered either for free or cost $1.99 with new sticker packs being added on a regular basis. Everything will be available to browse and download from directly within BBM.

Sponsored BBM Channels
Sponsored BBM Channels will also be making an appearance in the next release. While the term “sponsored” may scare some people, you can rest assured that the sponsored content won’t ever get in your way while using BBM Channels. You’ll start to see more posts and features from big brands, but you’ll still get the same experience you’ve had all along, just with some added bonuses.

The sponsored content will come in the form of promoted channels (so you’ll see them larger or higher up on the featured list), sponsored posts that will show within your updates (and be catered to you) and also sponsored invites. The sponsored content will never invade your chats or channels — so you’ll still have a pure chat experience — and you can essentially choose what you do or don’t want to see. All of the sponsored content will be driving back to the platform as well, so this type of thing is a good one as it will help to better BBM Channels and BBM as a whole.

New Features
In addition to BBM Stickers, some other very welcome updates will be included with the new release. You’ll now be able to send photos in multi-person chats, rather than just one-on-one. File size limits also see an increase to 16MB — up from the long standing limit of just 6MB. That means you can send higher quality images, bigger videos and larger files over BBM.

The update is scheduled to hit across all platforms sometime in the next week — so it’s just days away. We’ll be sure to let you know when it’s live, so don’t stress out about it too much

What’s you Say on this ?

SOURCE : CRACKBERRY

Posted From The Beats Online Magazine News Room

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Mark Zuckerberg:
I’m excited to announce that we’ve agreed to acquire Oculus VR, the leader in virtual reality technology.

Our mission is to make the world more open and connected. For the past few years, this has mostly meant building mobile apps that help you share with the people you care about. We have a lot more to do on mobile, but at this point we feel we’re in a position where we can start focusing on what platforms will come next to enable even more useful, entertaining and personal experiences.

This is where Oculus comes in. They build virtual reality technology, like the Oculus Rift headset. When you put it on, you enter a completely immersive computer-generated environment, like a game or a movie scene or a place far away. The incredible thing about the technology is that you feel like you’re actually present in another place with other people. People who try it say it’s different from anything they’ve ever experienced in their lives.

Oculus’s mission is to enable you to experience the impossible. Their technology opens up the possibility of completely new kinds of experiences.

Immersive gaming will be the first, and Oculus already has big plans here that won’t be changing and we hope to accelerate. The Rift is highly anticipated by the gaming community, and there’s a lot of interest from developers in building for this platform. We’re going to focus on helping Oculus build out their product and develop partnerships to support more games. Oculus will continue operating independently within Facebook to achieve this.

But this is just the start. After games, we’re going to make Oculus a platform for many other experiences. Imagine enjoying a court side seat at a game, studying in a classroom of students and teachers all over the world or consulting with a doctor face-to-face — just by putting on goggles in your home.

This is really a new communication platform. By feeling truly present, you can share unbounded spaces and experiences with the people in your life. Imagine sharing not just moments with your friends online, but entire experiences and adventures.

These are just some of the potential uses. By working with developers and partners across the industry, together we can build many more. One day, we believe this kind of immersive, augmented reality will become a part of daily life for billions of people.

Virtual reality was once the dream of science fiction. But the internet was also once a dream, and so were computers and smartphones. The future is coming and we have a chance to build it together. I can’t wait to start working with the whole team at Oculus to bring this future to the world, and to unlock new worlds for all of us.

Posted From The Beats Online Magazine News Room

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Posted: March 26, 2014 in Headlines

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Newspaper Apologizes For Showing Obamas As Apes+pics

A Belgian newspaper apologised Monday following outcry over an image showing US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama with their faces photoshopped to look like apes. The image was printed alongside another that implies President Obama sells marijuana.

The images appeared in Flemish newspaper De Morgen’s Saturday edition, in a satire section called “The Obama Herald”. The paper joked that President Vladimir Putin sent in the photos. The controversy comes ahead of an official visit by President Obama to Belgium. He is scheduled to arrive in Brussels Tuesday.

The apology from De Morgen’s editors came in an article entitled, “Is De Morgen Racist?”. They called the image a “tasteless joke”, explaining, “We wrongly assumed that racism is no longer accepted, and that in this way it could be the subject of a joke”.

The international outcry began on Saturday after Nigerian writer Chika Unigwe, who lives in Belgium, tweeted the image.

SOURCE:

http://stream.aljazeera.com/story/201403241828-0023581


Lol ! That’s all I can Say to this one !
But wait ! Are you Kidding Me ?


Delegates to the National Conference resumed Monday to debate the draft rules of procedure, which they agreed should be considered clause by clause.

However, the delegates during the debate failed to agree on how to reach a consensus on their decisions, prompting the conference Chairman, Justice Idris Legbo Kutigi, to defer further discussions of the matter for another time.

The debate on the consensus brought to the fore one of the fault lines in the country as it pitted delegates from the north against their southern counterparts.

While the northern delegates said resolutions of the conference should be reached based on the vote of 75 per cent of the 492 delegates, their southern counterparts pushed for a two-thirds majority vote, representing 66 per cent of the participants.

The controversy over resolutions of the conference through a consensus arrangement began when Chief Mike Ozekhome called for a review of Order 6, Rule 4 and Rule 11 as well as Order 11, Rules 1 and 2 of the Conference Procedures, which state that a resolution at the conference will be reached through a 75 per cent vote of the delegates.

The chairman of the conference, Justice Idris Kutigi, had also ruled to adopt the resolution but Ozoekhome in a motion supported by Chief Adeniyi Akintola, urged the conference to adopt the best parliamentary practice of two-thirds of the delegates.

Ozekhome argued that in a conference of 492 delegates, to pass a resolution through a 75 per cent majority vote would be near impossible and would only enthrone a tyrannical minority.
He said adopting such a voting system would make it impossible to pass resolutions on issues such as resource control, regionalism, state police, type of government and other critical matters that agitate the minds of Nigerians.

According to him, a two-thirds majority is the global parliamentary practice adopted in passing resolutions and the National Conference will do well to embrace global best practice.

Supporting Ozekhome, Akintola said if President Goodluck Jonathan had decided to force the 75 per cent vote on the delegates to pass a resolution, there would be no need for them to continue with the national discourse.

Also contributing to the debate, a former Secretary of the Government of the Federation (SGF), Chief Olu Falae, and Mr. Bisi Adegboye advanced the position of the southern delegates that resolutions should be reached based on a two-thirds majority.

Afenifere chieftain, Chief Ayo Adebanjo and leader of the Odua People’s Congress (OPC), Chief Gani Adams, also supported the argument for a two-thirds majority vote.

Adebanjo said the argument to use consensus might be an avenue to prevent decisions from being reached at the conference, as it would amount to setting impossible conditions for the delegates to meet.
But Professor Awwal Yadudu, a delegate from the North-west, faulted the arguments of Ozekhome and Akintola, saying as much as everybody believes in the indivisibility and indissolubility of Nigeria as a sovereign nation, it would be better if decisions are reached by 75 per cent of the delegates.

Also, a former Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Gambo-Jimeta, who warned delegates against intimidating others, spoke in the same vein.

He urged all the delegates to support the the 75 per cent majority vote in the overall interest of the conference.

He said: “If we want to get anything perfect here, it will not be possible based on the way the delegates were selected. Although no one is trying to destroy what has been put together for the conference, no one should try to force his will and subsequently spoil this opportunity to chart a new course for the country.”

Hajia Naratu Babajo, a delegate from Kaduna State, reiterated the position of the northern delegates on the adoption of a 75 per cent majority vote in passing resolutions on all issues.

Earlier, as part of his contribution, Adebanjo had faulted the remarks made by Gambo-Jimeta that some people were trying to force their views on other delegates, adding that the conference must adopt conventional means of reaching a consensus, which is by adopting a two-thirds majority to resolve issues.

According to him, “It is true that we want consensus on all issues, no one is canvassing for the division of Nigeria as a sovereign nation. I agree with Gambo-Jimeta, but we want a solution to the issues that confront us as a nation. Let’s go along with the world on a two-thirds majority and not three-quarters. Those of us who support the conference will not be happy with three-quarters resolution on issues.”
After the contributions from the delegates, no agreement was reached on the matter before the delegates went on lunch break

On resumption from lunch break, the chairman ruled that the issue should be revisited later.
He also overruled a motion by a former Governor of Ogun State, Chief Olusegun Osoba, for the conference to adjourn proceedings daily at 5 pm instead of 6 pm.

Osoba had in a motion, said it was necessary for the conference to adjust the sitting period to make allowance for lobbying by delegates.

Also during the debate, Mr. Ledum Mitee from Rivers State and Mr. Supo Sasore, from Lagos State, called for the review of a section of the draft rules that compels delegates to obtain permission from the conference secretariat before staying away from any meeting or travelling out of the country.
Mitee argued that delegates should only be made to merely notify the secretariat instead of being portrayed as having committed any offence by being absent.

Sasore said delegates should be assumed to be responsible enough to appreciate the need to attend all the sessions, adding that there was no need to seek permission to be absent from any session.

Based on a motion by Senator Daisy Danjuma, the word “offence” was removed from the section dealing with absenteeism from meetings and replaced with “it shall be a breach of these rules….”

Another issue that was debated at length was that of forming a quorum. While some delegates suggested one-third of the members were sufficient for a quorum, others said a quorum could only be formed at either plenary or committee meetings with the presence of 50 per cent of members.

When the question was put to votes, the majority voted that one-third of members would form a quorum.
A civil society member, Dr. Abiola Akiyode, also questioned in a motion, the use of “he” to refer to both men and women.
This generated a heated debate with contributions from Mrs. Josephine Anenih and Senator Saidu Dansadau, among others.

Anenih moved the hall to laughter with the suggestion that the use of “he” should be replaced by “it” to refer to both sexes or at the very best, the word “she” and not “he” should be used to represent both male and female delegates.

But Dansadau drew the attention of the delegates to the use of “he” both in the 1999 Constitution, votes and proceedings of the National Assembly, and judicial pronouncements, adding that there were sufficient conventions to be followed on the issue.

When the question was put to vote, it was ruled that whenever the word “he” is used in the Rules of Procedure, it must be followed by “or she.”
Besides debating the rules, the conference announced the committees to be set up to include Committee on Devolution of Powers; Committee on National Security; Committee on Environment; Committee on Politics and Governance; Committee on Public Welfare; Committee on Transportation; Committee on Science and Technology; Committee on Agriculture; Committee on Civil Society, Labour and Sport; Committee on Political Restructuring and Forms of Government; Committee on Electoral Matters; Committee of Foreign Policy and Diaspora Matters; Committee on Land Tenure and National Boundary; Committee on Trade and Investment; Committee on Energy; Committee on Religion; Committee on Public Finance and Revenue Generation; Committee on Immigration; Committee on Immigration; Committee on Public Service; and Committee on Law, Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Reforms.

It was agreed after a heated debate that each member should indicate which committee he would want to serve while election of committee chairmen and deputies would be decided by the committees.
The session adjourned at 6.10 pm to resume today.

Meanwhile, a former Governor of Anambra State, Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife, has raised the issue of the National Conference clashing with the 2015 general election.

He said: “It is important, I think, to ask this question: What happens if the time requirement of the National Conference clashes with the 2015 elections timetable? That is, if the conference requires more time than envisaged and threatens the 2015 elections.

“Do we suspend the conference and go for the elections or do we continue with the conference and push up the elections? In Igbo, we say that one must first secure the space (land) before the mat. It makes sense to suspend anything about the election, if it clashes with securing the permanence of one Nigeria. The National Conference may, indeed, play the role of fuse in the political system.”

Source: THISDAYLIVE

Posted From The Beats Online Magazine News Room


During GTA publisher Take-Two’s Q3 earnings call, chairman Strauss Zelnick denied GTA6 by — ironically — talking about GTA6. To quote: “We’re not going to announce it. We’re not going to announce when we’re going to announce it. And we’re not going to announce the strategy about announcing it or about when we’re going to announce it either, or about the announcement strategy surrounding the announcement of the strategy. Any other questions?”.
The video game titled “Shuffle City” scheduled for 2019, is said to leave the shores of america and feature lagos, Nigeria in western africa the story revolves around GTA’s favourite character thomas vercetti who happens to be suffering from Amnesia and wakes up in a hospital in the city and works with the resources and contacts to find out how he got there the game is said to be modelled in the image of the lekki pennisula west nigeria complete with lagos radio stations and songs from nigerian artistes and shall feature local thugs as well as radical groups + old friends and foes from “Vice city”
Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter claimed: “While we still expect a GTA game in calendar 2019, it is not clear that the game will be released before the end of Take-Two’s fiscal year ending October 31, 2019.”

Clearly a quick turnaround analysts promised us for the next GTA game didn’t happen. Instead a Fall 2019 release for GTA6 is much more likely. In the end, an extra year of development will make sure the game will be higher quality and more fun to play.
Also Grand Theft Auto 6 is said to be coming to Wii 2 alongside Xbox 360 and PS3 in fall 2019 the story here being that GTA6 would be a launch game.

Source : http:///ps9kcyt


Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for the 14 March attack on Giwa Barracks in Maiduguri, Borno State in Nigeria’s northeast.
To demonstrate how easily they raided the barracks, they producing the video of the operation, with their leader, Abubakar Shekau warning of further bloodshed, including against civilians.
“We carried out the attacks in Maiduguri (on March 14),” said a man dressed in white, wearing black headgear and carrying an assault rifle, claiming to be the group’s leader, Abubakar Shekau. He spoke in the video just obtained by AFP.
AFP reporter who had seen the video said the man who called himself Shekau appeared younger, thinner and with different mannerisms from older videos, which could prompt fresh questions about whether the militant leader, who had previously been reported killed, is still alive.
Shekau: still boasting in new video
The United States has declared Shekau a global terrorist and put a $7 million (5.1-million-euro) bounty on his head. Nigeria has separately offered 50 million naira ($300,000) for information leading to his capture or death.
He was reported to have been killed in a gun battle in northeast Nigeria between July 25 and August 3 last year, although a man resembling him has featured in a number of videos since then.
Nigeria’s military has yet to confirm officially whether Shekau is still alive and defence spokesman Chris Olukolade has said that whoever was making the claims in the videos was immaterial.
“That’s not the issue in this matter. They’re all terrorists,” he told AFP in a March 14 interview.
In the latest video, which was obtained via the same channels as previous statements, the man claiming to be Shekau speaks for 37 minutes in the local Hausa and Kanuri languages, as well as Arabic.
Footage then follows showing what appear to be heavily armed Boko Haram fighters arriving in pick-up trucks and firing on the Giwa barracks in Maiduguri with assault rifles and rocket propelled grenades.
– Claims of ill-treatment –
Hundreds of suspected Boko Haram fighters have been held at the barracks in the capital of northeastern Borno state in conditions that have been strongly criticised by international rights groups.
Shekau
The video shows hundreds of people, most of them young men in civilian clothes but also some women, apparently running away from the compound.
Boko Haram claimed in the video that they freed about 2,000 of their brothers in arms, some of whom recounted at length their experience at the facility, alleging torture by the military.
“We launched the Maiduguri attacks and killed infidels in Giwa barracks,” said the man who insists several times that he is Shekau, adding a warning about members of the public who have joined civilian vigilante groups against them.
“There are only two groups of people in the world. There are either those with us or those on the other side, which I’ll kill once I spot them. This is my only focus now,” he said.
“This is Shekau speaking… By Allah, I will slaughter you. I’m not happy if I don’t slit your throats. I’ll slaughter you, I’ll slaughter you, I’ll slaughter you.”
The video repeats claims made in a previous video obtained on February 19 about Boko Haram members killing a prominent Muslim cleric who had criticised the group and threatening to attack oil wells in southern Nigeria.
“We are not fighting the north, we are fighting the world. And you will see us fighting the world. This is our job,” he added.
– Upsurge in violence –
Boko Haram wants to create a separate Islamic state in northern Nigeria and has been blamed for thousands of deaths since 2009.
Nigeria’s military imposed a state of emergency in three northeastern states in May last year in an attempt to stop the bloodshed but violence has continued.
This year, more than 700 people have been killed already, most of them civilians in remote rural areas, while tens of thousands have fled their homes.
Nigeria’s military claims that measures introduced to prevent the militants from seeking safe haven outside Nigeria, notably in northern Cameroon, are the reason for the upsurge in violence as the group is lashing out.
Top brass said the Giwa barracks attack was a sign of desperation and an indication that Boko Haram’s ranks were depleted.
Nigeria’s national security adviser last week announced “soft power” measures designed to complement the military offensive, including “de-radicalisation” programmes for Boko Haram suspects and closer cooperation with local people.
The measures were seen as a recognition that Nigeria had realised that force alone could not end the crisis.

Posted From The Beats Online Magazine News Room