Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Unique Holiday Displays at Capitol

<3d christmas cardsimg src="">

Inside the Florida Capitol - a number of holiday themed displays are out for the public to see. But, not all of the displays made the cut.

Members of the Garner family traveled from Montana and Tennessee to take their photo in front of the Festivus display inside the Florida State Capitol. They'll use it for next year's Holiday card.

Britt Garner, holiday tourist: "It's awesome. This one will go down on the family fridge for a while."

Lisa Garner, holiday tourist: "Its just honestly interesting politically and just good family fun."

Just five feet away is another first... a unique display representing the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Hannah Ham, "It's funny how they have Ragu."

Not from the Flying Spaghetti Monster are displays from The Freedom From Religion and Atheists groups.

"I think its great Florida has this diversity represented at Christmas time."

All together eight holiday displays were allowed. One was not. This is a picture of the exhibit presented by the Satanic Temple to the state.

The Department of Management Services said the display is "grossly offensive".

It started off with the Christmas Nativity, a religious display. Going from the Nativity Scene to other displays of non-religion, groups are making sure there's something here for everyone."

Karen Garner, Holiday Tourist, "I think it's a great opportunity to bring all walks of life to do some fun things, it's a really good example of pop culture."

Although most were in support of the unique displays, not everyone was. Some believe the only acceptable display is the Nativity Scene.
But another tourist, Maynard Bellbusch was turned off by one display. "That I can accept, but this I cannot even though they're mocking."

So regardless what you're celebrating this holiday season - the capitol has a little bit of everything for everyone.

The Nativity Scene that sparked the unique displays will be replaced later this week for Three Kings Day.

Friday, November 29, 2013

UPDATE: Sigma has released firmware to fix compatibility problems with Nikon D5300

<Nikon D5300 Discountp>You can now download firmware for a number of Sigma lenses that should correct the problems Nikon D5300 users may experience with its lenses

UPDATE 22/11/13:

Sigma has released firmware to fix the problems with the following lenses:

・35mm F1.4 DG HSM A012 NIKON
・17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM C013 NIKON
・30mm F1.4 DC HSM A013 NIKON
・18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM A013 NIKON
・120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM S013 NIKON

The update should make these lenses fully functional with the Nikon D5300. See here for more information and the download link.


In a statement on its website, Sigma has said that the current firmware of its Nikon-fit interchangeable lenses 'may not work properly with the Nikon D5300's OS and Live View Auto Focus functions'.

Though it hasn't released specific details, Sigma has said that the problem occurs specifically with Nikon-fit interchangable lenses that incorporate an internal motor.

Sigma will be releasing a free firmware update tomorrow (November 20) that it says should correct the problem. You can contact your nearest Sigma dealer in order to receive the update; Sigma provides a full list here.

See Sigma's website for the full statement.


We recently completed the What Digital Camera review of the Nikon D5300

Source: Whatdigitalcamera

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Sigma Issues D5300 Compatibility Fix for Five Lenses

<Nikon D5300 Discountimg src="">

Sigma has issued an update to Sigma Optimisation Pro, the dedicated software for the Sigma USB Dock (pictured), providing a fix for a couple of compatibility issues with five of its lenses and the new Nikon D5300. Owners of the Nikon-mount versions of the Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM, 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC Macro OS HSM, 30mm F1.4 DC HSM, 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM and 120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM optics are advised to update their lens firmware via Sigma Optimisation Pro if they plan on using their lenses on a Nikon D5300 body.

Website: Sigma Optimisation Pro

Sigma Press Release Dear SIGMA USB DOCK Users,

Thank you for purchasing and using our products.

We would like to announce that we have updated the firmware of the SIGMA Optimization Pro, the dedicated software for the SIGMA USB DOCK.

The latest firmware enables our Nikon fitting interchangeable lenses fully functional with the Nikon D5300 camera. For those customers who own following products, please update the firmware of the lens via the SIGMA Optimization Pro.

・35mm F1.4 DG HSM A012 NIKON
・17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM C013 NIKON
・30mm F1.4 DC HSM A013 NIKON
・18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM A013 NIKON
・120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM S013 NIKON

Should the version of SIGMA Optimization Pro is not updated to Ver. 1.1 yet, please be sure to do it before operating any lens firmware update.
You can download the latest version of the software from the following page;

We appreciate your consistent support for our company and products.

Source: Photographyblog

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

New And Exclusive Micro-Site Content

ePHOTOzine's Micro-Site Roundup - Find out what's been happening on our five Micro-Sites.


Here's a roundup of the exclusive content we've got for you to have a read of on our five micro-sites this week:

On PENTAXPORTAL this week, you can take a look at some top tips for photographing seals with your Pentax camera, and check out some top Pentax sunset photos. Plus, the brand new K-3 DSLR has been reviewed on site this week, and there's news of new images from Ricoh Imaging brand ambassadors.

Over On EIZO ColorZone, you can learn how to perform a monitor viewing angle check and find out why ColorNavigator software is a great tool for aiding calibration. Plus, there's news of a new 3D CG colour management handbook that's now available.

Meanwhile, on Olympus Image Space this week, there are techniques on how to use blur creatively, and there's news on Olympus workshops taking place over the coming months with Damian McGillicuddy and Steve Gosling. Plus, news on the Olympus Impressions 'Fall' competition, and £100 accessory cashback when you buy an Olympus OM-D E-M1 camera have also gone live.

On Totally Tamron this week, you can learn some top tips for taking better photos of ice with your Tamron lens, plus there are some top Tamron portrait photos for you to take a look at. Don't forget to take a look at David Pritchard's blog the days zoom past, too, as he's been out-and-about with his newly acquired Tamron 24-70mm lens.

Last but not least, on Nikon Nation this week, you can check out some ideas and tips for on location portrait shoots, get creative with colour balance and lots more. Plus, don't miss the Nikon D5300 Deals DSLR review and news of ono-to one training with Nikon School in December.

Make sure you check back to the Micro-Sites regularly, as new and exclusive content is posted weekly!

Source: Ephotozine

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Nikon Updates Capture NX, ViewNX for New DSLR Support

<Nikon D5300 Black Friday Dealimg src="">

Nikon has released minor updates for both its Capture NX and ViewNX softwares to make them compatible with the newest Nikon DSLRs.

Capture NX 2.4.5 is now available to download, and features:

  • Support for RAW images captured with the D5300 and the Df has been added.
  • The Better Quality 2012 option under Noise Reduction in the Camera Settings portion of the Develop section in the Edit List palette has been changed to Better Quality 2013.
  • Applicable from this version, Intensity and Sharpness can now be adjusted separately for both Luminance and Color. Therefore, when images to which Better Quality 2012 was applied with Capture NX 2 Ver. 2.4.4 or earlier are opened in Capture NX 2 Ver. 2.4.5, the effects of Noise Reduction adjustment may change.

For ViewNX 2.8.2, the official changes are even smaller.

    Support for the D5300 and the Df has been added.

So if you're planning on picking up that exciting new Nikon Df, here's your chance to get your software ready to work with it, well in advance of the camera landing in your hands.

Source: Popphoto

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Nikon finally adds built-in Wi-Fi to its DSLR line-up with the D5300

<Nikon D5300 Buy Cheapp>

As cameras all around them have gained built-in wireless capabilities, Nikon DSLRs have begun to feel strangely dated with their need for an additional Wi-Fi adapter to keep up with their wireless sharing and remote shooting counterparts. But with the freshly announced D5300, Nikon has finally revealed its first DSLR with built-in Wi-Fi and GPS.

The Nikon D5300 is an update to the mid-range D5200 which was released last year and arguably closes the gap to the enthusiast-targeted D7100. While it still features a 24 megapixel DX format (23.5 x 15.6 mm) APS-C CMOS sensor, and a 39-point autofocus system with nine cross-type sensors, the D5300 has now been designed without an optical low-pass filter to enable it to capture a greater level of detail than equally megapixeled cameras.

It's also been upgraded to use the Nikon EXPEED 4 image processing engine which enables a larger ISO range of 100 to 12,800 (expandable to 25,600 equivalent) though the camera still has a top continuous burst speed of 5 frames per second. Other improvements include the flipping, tilting and turning LCD on the rear which now measures 3.2 inches and has a 1037K dot resolution. Full HD 1080p video can now also be recorded at 60/50 fps and a new pentamirror increases viewfinder magnification to approx. 0.82x.

But it's the built-in Wi-Fi ability which will arguably be seen as the biggest improvement over the D5200, which required the optional WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter. Wireless functions in the Nikon D5300 include the ability to transfer images without interrupting your shooting, and to manually select the files you want to send to a phone or tablet for instant sharing.

There's also the option to use an iOS or Android device as a remote monitor or controller for things like adjusting focusing and shutter control when not directly with the camera. This can be handy for things like shooting group pictures with yourself in, or just times when awkward camera positioning would make it too difficult to use on-camera controls. Built-in GPS also means images can be geotagged with latitude, longitude, and altitude data, without the use of external adapters.

Measuring 125 x 98 x 76 mm (4.9 x 3.9 x 3 inches) and weighing 530 g (1 lb 2.7 oz) the D5300 is slightly smaller and lighter than its predecessor. Nikon says this is because it's used a newly developed monocoque-structure with carbon fiber reinforced plastic material for the camera body, allowing it to be both more compact and durable.

The Nikon D5300 will be available in black, red or gray in November. It's due to sell for US$800 body-only, or $1,400 with a AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm F3.5-5.6G ED VR kit lens.

Product page: Nikon D5300

Simon is a journalist and photographer who has spent the last ten years working for national UK newspapers - but has never hacked a mobile phone - and specializes in writing about weird products and photography technology. When not writing for Gizmag, Simon is often found playing with LEGO and drinking far too much coffee. All articles by Simon Crisp

Post a Comment Related Articles

Just enter your friends and your email address into the form below

For multiple addresses, separate each with a comma

Privacy is safe with us because we have a strict privacy policy.

Source: Gizmag

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Nikon D5300 Rumors, Specs, Price and Release Info: Camera Company Recently Releases Full Specs

<Nikon D5300 Dealsp>Nikon has recently come out with a full list of specs for the new D5300.

The latest model of the DX-format DSLR has 24.2 megapixels, a DX-format CMOS sensor with no optical low-pass filter, built-in Wi-Fi capabilities, a built-in GPS, a durable light body, a 3.2-inch 1037k-dot vari-angle LCCD monitor with wide viewing angle, NAL-1 features for zoom/focus assist, and more.

It also has a full-HD 1920x1080/60p capability for movies, where selection can range from 24, 25, 30,50, and 60p. There are also 9 special effects for creative expression.

Like Us on Facebook

As previously reported, Nikon Rumors reports that the Nikon D5300 is expected to be introduced before the Photo Plus show in NYC at the end of the month or the CES show in Las Vegas in January.

It is reported that this will be the first camera to get the new EXPEED 4 processor. Some other rumored specs include 24 Megapixels, 39 AF points, built-in Wi-Fi and built-in GPS.

Photography Bay reports that the D530 will be introduced as an entry-level APS-C format camera. There are no reports yet of whether or not it will have better image quality over the D5200, but it would make sense to add additional video features to the D5300.

No prices have been reported yet either, but Inferse reports that it may be priced lower than the D5200 was when it first was released.

Source: Designntrend

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Nikon D5300 hands-on review

<Nikon D5300 Black Friday Dealh2>Nikon D5300 at a glance:
  • 24.2-million-pixel, APS-C-sized CMOS sensor
  • 1.037-million-dot, 3.2in, 170° LCD screen
  • Expeed 4 image processor
  • 39-point AF system with nine cross-type sensors
  • ISO 100-25,600
  • Price £730 body only

Nikon D5300 - Introduction

While the serious enthusiast is unlikely to be swayed into buying a Nikon DSLR over a Canon model purely because the Nikon camera is newer, the reality is that at the non-premium end of the market this is how some people make their buying decisions. 'Newer' must mean 'better'.

This demand for the 'new' explains why we see such short product cycles in the camera market, and why manufacturers feel the need to introduce even small advances in technology or feature sets in cameras with completely new names - rather than a 'Mark II' type of naming format.

Those familiar with Nikon's range of DSLRs may not see the sense in the company's introduction of the new D5300, especially as Nikon will maintain the D5200 alongside this model in the range - new and old together. By doing so, though, Nikon expands the number of cameras it has on offer and the number of price points it can cover, while also being able to have a model that can carry a 'New' sticker, and which introduces new features to the price band in which it will sit.

That's not to say that the Nikon D5300 isn't different to the D5200, though, as a new processor, new body design and the integration of wireless communications do genuinely bring additional benefits to the photographer.

Nikon D5300 - Design and handling

Nikon is very pleased that it has achieved a new way of constructing camera bodies, which it describes as a 'monocoque'. Instead of there being a chassis, onto which the components and the body shell are attached, the D5300 is designed to have everything screwed to the insides of the body form itself: exoskeleton, rather then the usual endoskeleton.

Image: The top of the camera houses only a few control points, keeping the layout simple and unintimidating for newcomers. A stereo microphone lives in front of the hotshoe

The D5300's body shell is also made of a new material, although Nikon won't say what that new material is - just that it is new. The upshot is that the body is less heavy than it might have been, and is 25g lighter, including the battery, than the camera it doesn't replace, the D5200.

I'm not entirely sure that when I used the camera I could appreciate the exact weight loss that has occurred, but I was able to enjoy the fact that this is truly a lightweight DSLR, of the type that we might not mind carrying all day, over the shoulder, in a bag or in a large pocket. The body is very small too, although it is balanced with a reassuringly large grip for the right hand. It seems ironic that a small and light camera should need a large grip, but I found it allowed me to be aware I was carrying the camera, and should a larger lens be attached it will help to support the forward pull of such a weight distribution.

Image: The body styling will be familiar to those used to the Nikon 5000 series, as will the standard menu. The 3.2in flip-out screen has impressive visibility

The buttons are arranged much as one might expect, with all the principal controls falling easily to the finger or thumb. The rear 3.2in LCD is very nicely bright and clear, with its 1.037-million-dot resolution. Nikon has set the viewing panel into the glass screen, so there are no gaps or internal reflections, which produces good contrast and a clear view from a quoted angled of up to 170°. I am impressed.

In live view, the screen works well when the camera is held low or high, and I found the AF quick enough and seemingly accurate. The response of the shutter in live view also seems good.

Image: Nikon has retained its choice of layouts for the rear-screen display, with text-based and graphically expressed options to suit personal preferences

Nikon D5300 - Still to test

The principal changes in this model are of the sort that will only be proved in testing, but at this stage their potential is worth pointing out. Using the higher-capacity Expeed 4 processor, Nikon claims it has been able to reduce noise in its images through the use of more complicated calculations. A related benefit is that now noise levels are lower the company is comfortable offering a higher ISO setting - the Nikon D5300 allows ratings of up to ISO 25,600. More complex calculations also provide the potential for better white balance assessment in automatic modes via a more comprehensive assessment of the scene, and a better rendition of colour overall.

Lower noise should also lead to better resolution of detail from the 24.2-million-pixel sensor, as should Nikon's decision to do without the micro-blurring effects of a low-pass (anti-aliasing) filter. Leaving the low-pass filter off the sensor has become very fashionable, and I suspect it will be a great draw for many photographers. Moiré in images created by a sensor with 24 million pixels, even an APS-C-sized sensor, is still something that is quite likely to occur, but there is also plenty of software to correct it after the event.

The other thing to note is that this model sees the introduction of a new battery cell, which Nikon says increases capacity from 500 shots to 600 compared to the cell used in the D5200. It annoys me when companies change their battery forms, but on this occasion the new cell and that used in the D5200 are interchangeable.

Obviously, I couldn't test the battery life of the camera, but we should take the increase as good news. I will also have to wait to test the Wi-Fi and GPS capabilities of this new model, but neither can be held as negative points just for their inclusion. The Wi-Fi integration means users will be able to control the camera from an Android or iOS device, and will be able to wirelessly transfer images for viewing, editing and sending while on the go.

Image: The new battery, which is backwards compatible with the D5200, offers a longer life. There is no low-pass filter on the sensor, for extra resolution

Nikon D5300 - Conclusion

It would be easy to dismiss the Nikon D5300 for being too similar to the D5200, but that really isn't the point. There is not much wrong with the D5200, and the changes that this new model brings can only make it better. Perhaps Nikon could have called it the D5200 ll, but I'm not sure it matters one bit.

The Nikon D5300 will cost around £730 body only and be available from 14 November.

Source: Amateurphotographer

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Nikon Coolpix S6600 review

<Nikon D5300 Cheapp>What's great?
The vari-angle screen, photo filters and glamour effects make it seriously fun to use.

Gesture control doesn't work, it's a bit slow to process effects and image quality is not top priority.

The bottom line:
Not a camera for enthusiasts but as fun as your mobile and better at photography.

Nikon Coolpix S6600: Review

The concept of the selfie photograph has become so huge in today's world of social networking profiles that the word made it into the Oxford English Dictionary in August 2013. So then, it should be of little surprise that imaging company Nikon has dreamed up a compact to perfect the art of the digital self-portrait.

This is the Nikon Coolpix S6600. It's a device with a £199 price tag that buys you a 16MP image sensor and a 12x optical zoom lens. More importantly, though, its 2.7-inch LCD screen is a full, flip-out vari-angle display which you can turn all the way back on itself to the point where you can be looking straight at the lens and also at the shot that's about to be taken at exactly the same time. Throw in eight glamour retouch features and built-in Wi-Fi for photo sharing, and you've got a compact born and bred for parties and social networking. Sounds good on paper, so how does it fare in real life?

Nikon Coolpix S6600: Pocket camera

That screen aside, there's very little either noteworthy or novel about the Nikon S6600. It's small and light. It weighs just 165g and measures 97 x 57 x 27mm. So, it's something like the size of a stubby mobile phone and, just as one would hope and expect, it fits in your pocket nicely enough with the added bonus that you can turn the screen around and when you stow it so that your keys and coins won't scratch the display.

In the aesthetics department, it's certainly classy enough. The plastic finish of the front face is smooth and modern, and the back has a matte metal look. There's nothing freakish or awkward about the position of the battery, memory card slot or the basic controls on the back but it does take a little getting used to that both the scene selector and the playback mode controls are on the top of the camera next to the shutter release, power and zoom.

There's only two things that would make this compact easier to use. The first is a video record button on the top. The vari-angle screen means that you end up shooting from the hip and even lower quite a lot and the switch on the rear isn't always easy to find. The other modification is that the S6600 is screaming out to be touchscreen controlled. All the retouching functions would work fantastically well. It's just a pity that it would probably end up pricing this device out of the market if Nikon had ended up including one.

Nikon Coolpix S6600: Selfie style

The flip-out, full spinning, 2.7-inch LCD screen on the Nikon S6600 absolutely makes this camera. It's a worthy and welcome inclusion in a compact and far from typical in these kinds of models. Even at its most basic, it's superb for taking to parties or grabbing a two-shot of you and your buddy out and about wherever you are without having to ask some random to grab the pic for you. This screen means that you can compose it just the way you want and capture a moment while it's still there. Given that much of photography is about trying to do just that, it's not something that we credit lightly.

The fun begins when you decide you wish to take things a bit further. The S6600 has eight beauty effects to make any one or more of your subjects even prettier than they already are. You can whiten teeth, whiten eyes, widen eyes, remove bags, smooth skin, make cheeks rosier, brighten faces and make faces smaller too. You can take any one of these to the extreme or, more effective is just to select one or two of them at their lower settings. Ultimately, none of these will turn you into Brad Pitt/Angelina Jolie but they're highly effective at removing the odd flushed face, smoothing out a bad skin day or making a 6am snap look a little less wired.

Finally, there's also a gesture control mode that Nikon has squeezed in to help out with those times when you want to prop your camera up on a wall but would rather not have to make the self-timer dash. Instead, the idea is that you raise you palm and then tell the device whether you want to take the shot or zoom in or out a bit first by moving your hand around to select some on-screen options. It's a really nice idea but sadly it doesn't work. It's quite good at sensing your palm but not much cop at any functions beyond that. It's a pity but certainly not an experience-ruiner.

Nikon Coolpix S6600: Effects and filters

Everyone loves a bit of post-production these days with preset filters all the rage over the more laborious and painstaking boredom of spending your life in Photoshop. Like all good camera manufacturers, Nikon has shown its customers that effects aren't just for mobile phones and there's a very healthy selection indeed available inside the S6600. It's all the usuals from Pop Art, Cross Process and Toy Camera all the way to colour selections, Fisheye and Miniature mode too. You can even set the camera to offer up these settings straight after you've captured each shot just like Instagram although that does slow things down a bit.

Speaking of which, that's one of the major issues we have with this compact camera. Yes, it's great to have all these fun features, filters and beautifying effects but the image processor insides isn't quite up to the task. It can do the job but it takes half a second or two too long. If only Nikon had put a more powerful computer inside to crunch those graphical numbers, then this would be a very impressive compact indeed.

Finally, there is one mode that will offer hours of fun and it's not one we've come across before. Hidden between the high and low key options is Mirror which captures a symmetrical image. You can get lost in patterns and funny faces for quite some time.

Nikon Coolpix S6600: Picture quality and video

If you're used to using a CSC, DSLR or even a high end compact camera, then the results from the S6600 are a bit disappointing. The colours are well handled and, when sharp, photos look excellent but the reality is devices like this one are more about the fun than they are about pure image quality. They're simply not built with big enough image sensors and the manual settings to ensure that your snaps are perfect every time.

Things are mostly good outdoors but, as soon as you get into artificial light situations, you really need the flash to get anything that's neither too noisy nor too blurred to use. It's also not that good at keeping up with your subject when in motion in daylight either. In the majority of the family snaps that we grabbed, the young kids tended not to come out as clean as they could, and that's pity. Our advice would be to shoot in Sports mode where possible to avoid this kind of problem rather than rely on the Smart Scene selector to do it for you. Ultimately, though, one shouldn't expect the Earth in terms of image quality from a device like this one.

That said, we would like to give a quick nod to the video at this point which was largely excellent. The sound recording is a bit tiny, naturally, but footage was always well focused and the vari-angle screen makes it really good to use.

Nikon Coolpix S6600: Wi-Fi and uploads

As with just about every camera we're seeing this year, the Nikon S6600 comes with a Wi-Fi module built in. You can't use it to hop onto your home network or any other local loop out there. It's all about broadcasting a mini-system of its own. The idea is that you can then set your tablet or smartphone to hook up with it and use the Nikon Wireless Mobility app to transfer images, take remote control pictures or add a geotag from your device's GPS.

As ever, it's a nice touch but perhaps not vital. The best uses are for sharing pictures with others while out and about as well as uploading to Facebook and Twitter. It would be nice to have the facility in the app to go straight to these social networks but that's not the case. You need to transfer the pics first and then go to your mobile or tablet's image library and take it from there. It's not super smooth but it certainly works.

Nikon Coolpix S6600: Verdict

Photography purists should stay well away from the Nikon Coolpix S6600 but then photography purists have no business in the the mid-to-low-end compact market. This is a party camera, a people's camera and a self-portrait camera and of that there should be no mistake. The image quality could be better and it really needs to process the funky effects a lot quicker but, if you're after something to take on a night out, touch up and then post to Facebook while you're still revelling, then the S6600 is a really good option.

Source: Msn

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Nikon refines its enthusiast-level DSLR with GPS-equipped D5300

Oct. 17, 2013 at 8:18 PM ET

The latest from Nikon D5300 Deals is a refresh of the popular D5200 that doesn't fix anything that wasn't broken, but makes a few welcome changes under the hood, such as adding built-in Wi-Fi and GPS.

The predictably named D5300 doesn't just add extra bullet points to the feature list, though. The actual picture-taking parts have gotten an upgrade as well. Its 24-megapixel sensor has lost the anti-aliasing filter - this optical filter was necessary on digital cameras for years, but recent advances in high-resolution sensors and in image processors have made it obsolete. Removing it can improve image quality, and that's just what Nikon has done.

Also updated is the image processor, which will allow the D5300 to shoot five stills per second, or video at 1080p and 60 frames per second. It's only a small step up from its predecessor, but every little bit counts.

Its articulating rear LCD has also gotten slightly larger, and the viewfinder is a bit better now as well. Again, nothing that will make D5200 owners particularly jealous.

Wi-Fi and GPS, however, might come in handy. Being able to geotag your shots and sync them with Dropbox quickly becomes indispensable, and perks like being able to activate the shutter from your smartphone don't hurt either.

At $800 for the body or $1,400 with a capable 18-140 F/3.5-5.6 zoom, the D5300 is competitive with the likes of Canon and Sony for consumer-grade DSLRs. That said, if none of the new features are calling your name, just remember: pretty soon you'll be able to pick up the D5200 for a song.

Devin Coldewey is a contributing writer for NBC News Digital. His personal website is
Source: Nbcnews

Sunday, October 20, 2013

JOURNALISM NEXT: Backstage peek at Howl-O-Scream

As the sun goes down, the monsters come out and invade what used to be known as Busch Gardens.

Behind the scenes Sept. 13 offered a different experience at one of the scariest events in Florida: Busch Garden's Howl-O-Scream.

Each year, Busch Gardens gives young journalists the opportunity to peek behind the scenes at the month-long event.

This year's High School Journalism Day began with creative director, Scott Swenson's introduction paired with an inside look on this year's event.

Blood, guts, and gore are just a few of the words Swenson used to describe HOS. The theme of this season is called "The 13," which represents 13 different cynical icons known by many to be symbols of fear such as No. 5, the Banshee; No. 11, the Psychopath; and No. 13, the clown faces scary.

No. 6, The Voodoo Queen's "Death Water Bayou" haunted house takes place in Pontchartrain Parrish in the evil M.L. Morte's voodoo shop. Journalists were able to enjoy the thrill of the lighting and visual effects without the nervous anticipation of lurking scare actors. This allowed young journalists to take in each individual detail. They passed by tombstones inscribed with the names of various higher-level cast members, including Swenson. In the house, 28 different scare actors are positioned to frighten anyone who dares face what is behind door No. 6. The house features a live snake, performing actors in the queue, and scare performers bouncing out with bungees cords.

"The house I am going to be most excited about is the house the guests are most excited about, because honestly I don't do this for me. I do it for you guys," said Swenson.

Another addition to the HOS family is the new haunted house, the Basement which features icon No. 4, The Butcher. This scenario takes place in what is called "Momma's Meats" where human bodies make up the main ingredient.

Several fan-favorite houses returned as well, including the Circus of Superstition. This 3-D house is back with a "giant surprise," Swenson said.

Other returning houses include Ultimate Gamble: Reversal of Fortune, which comes back with a vampire-versus-werewolf approach, and Nevermore, featuring a serial killer driven mad by Poe's writing, Zombie Mortuary, and Blood Asylum.

HOS also has many returning factors from last year such as Fiends, a popular show which opened 14 years ago, which has a brand new twist this year. Club 13 will also be returning along A new house, unlike any other house held at HOS, is the Experiment, which has interactive variables that test your fears of snakes, roaches, the dark, and more. This special house has an up-charge of $50 for the first victim and an extra $10 for each additional member.

Auditioning for the role of a scare actor for Howl-O-Scream is a physically intense procedure. Alex Crow, entertainment show manager, asks actors to participate in a wide variety of role-playing that includes digging graves as designated characters such as zombies or clowns. The actors are tested for their level of "scare-effect" and ability to complete the task.

"We want to make sure we have the best of the best when it comes to scare actors," Crow said.

Out of 1,700 auditions, only 900 scare actors were hired from different age ranges, reaching up to 84 years old.

Scare actors also have to be dedicated to fit their character, such as No. 4, The Butcher, who shaved his head for the role. The Butcher's Shop doubles as the extra storage room in the Howl-O-Scream Shop of Horrors. Surprisingly, it only takes four days to set up and open the entire Shop of Horrors

with the help of multiple staff and managers.

Photo Ops are set up around the park to take themed pictures with the scare actors.

The event runs through Saturday. Tickets:

Source: Bradenton

Friday, October 18, 2013

What's Happening for OCTOBER (Updated Oct. 19)

Send events of community interest in South Mississippi to or fax to 896-2104. Please label "What's Happening."


Mississippi Coast RC Club Fall Fly In and Airshow: 8 a.m., 14665 County Farm Road, Gulfport. Admission is free. Alcohol and pets are not allowed. Details:

American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk of the Mississippi Gulf Coast: 8 a.m. registration, 9 a.m. walk, Biloxi Town Green. Details: 896-7024.

HOG Ride charity motorcycle event for the Home of Grace: 8 a.m. breakfast and opening ceremony, 14200 Jericho Road, Vancleave. Motorcycle ride from Home of Grace to the Mississippi Coast Coliseum at 10:30 a.m. Registration: free for non-riders, $50 for riders, with alumni and group discounts available. Details: 826-5283.

Honor Flight 5K run/walk: 8 a.m., Air National Guard Combat Readiness Training Center, Hewes Avenue, Gulfport. Cost: $25, $20 for veterans, retirees and active service members. Run/walk held as a fundraiser for the final encore Honor Flight. Details: 217-9296.

25th annual Mississippi Coastal Cleanup: 8-11 a.m., more than 70 sites throughout South Mississippi. Details: 877-BEACH-05.

The Pass Christian Farmers Market: 8 a.m.-noon, War Memorial park, Pass Christian. Details: 297-3040.

A.C.T. Workshop for high school students: 9 a.m. registration, 10 a.m. workshop session start, Isiah Fredericks Community Center, Martin Luther King Drive, Gulfport. Details: 868-1218 or 392-6864.

27th annual Fall Muster: 9 a.m. Oct. 19-20, Beauvoir, The Jefferson Davis Home, U.S. 90, Biloxi. Tickets: $9 adults, $7.50 for seniors and military, children under 6 are free. Details: 388-4400.

West Biloxi Library book sale: 9 a.m.-4 p.m., 2047 Pass Road, Biloxi. Details: 388-5696.

13th annual Ocean Springs Renaissance Faire: 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Oct. 19, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 20, 4900 Riley Road, Ocean Springs, behind St. Elizabeth Seton Church, Ocean Springs. Admission: $5 per person, children under 8 are free. Details: 239-2131.

Gautier Mullet and Music Fest: 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Oct. 19, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Oct. 20, downtown Gautier. Details: 215-0828.

Northwood Church women's event: 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m., 14281 O'Neal Road, Gulfport. Conference will include teaching sessions, vendors, live music and more. Ladies 12 years old and up are invited to attend. Cost: $25. Childcare will not be provided. Details: 832-5100.

Christus Victor Lutheran Church Blessing of the Pets: 10 a.m., 2755 Bienville Blvd., Ocean Springs. Details: 875-2446

Painted Pumpkins for kids: 10-11 a.m., The Crosby Arboretum, 370 Ridge Road, Picayune. Pumpkin decorating for Halloween. Cost: $4 for members, $6 for nonmembers. Details: 601-799-231.

Come and Read to the Dogs! - Visiting Pet Teams of South Mississippi's Children Reading Program: 10 a.m.-noon, Pass Christian Library, 111 Hiern Ave., Pass Christian. Details: 452-4596.

Garden Park Medical Center Fall Festival and 40th Anniversary celebration: 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Community Blvd., Gulfport. Kids games, arts and crafts vendors, live entertainment and more. Proceeds benefit the United Way of South Mississippi and the American Heart Association.

Third annual miniature golf tournament: 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Big Play Family Fun Center, 1836 Beach Blvd., Biloxi. Sponsored by the K&J Foundation. Cost: $25 per person or $100 for team of four. Details: 326-3833.

Goodwill Missionary Baptist Church Fall Festival: 10 a.m.-2 p.m., 322 Davis Ave., Pass Christian. Health Screenings, flu shots, massages games, food and gospel singing. Details; 265-0221

Games Day: 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Gautier Community Center, 2101 Library Lane. Details: 249-6782.

87th annual St. Rose de Lima Heritage Festival: 11 a.m.-10 p.m., St. Rose de Lima Catholic Church, 301 S. Necaise Ave., Bay St. Louis. Festival will feature live entertainment, arts and crafts, kids games and more. Details: 467-7347.

Bachtoberfest: 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Pascagoula Riverfront Park. The Gulf Coast Symphony Youth Orchestra will perform. Admission: $15 for adults, $5 for children 10 and under.

Praise in the Park 2013: 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Lucedale City Park, Lucedale. Tickets: $10 each for groups of 15 or more, $15 day of show or $12 each for 14 or less. Details:

Mississippi Coastal Clean up Commemorative Quilt Exhibit: Noon-4 p.m.. Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum, Edgewater Mall, 2800 Beach Blvd., Biloxi. Volunteers may come sign the quilt.

Mississippi Gulf Coast Military Collectors Show: Noon-6 p.m., D'Iberville Civic Center, 10383 Auto Mall Parkway, D'Iberville. Admission: $5, free to World War II veterans. Details: 224-1120.

Our Lady of Fatima School's Halloween Carnival and Chili Cook-Off: Noon-8 p.m., 2090 Pass Road, Biloxi. Silent auction opens at noon, chili open at 2 p.m. kids games, costume contests and more. Details: 547-1315.

South Mississippi Linux Users Group: 2 p.m., Holiday Inn Express, 300 W. Beach Blvd., Long Beach. Details:

4th annual Blessing of the Animals Ceremony: 2 p.m., The Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 1904 Popp's Ferry Road, Biloxi. Donations will be collected for the Humane Society of South Mississippi. Details: 863-7389.

Fourth annual Blessing of the Animals ceremony: 2 p.m., Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 1904 Popp's Ferry Road, Biloxi. Details: 863-7389.

Pass Christian Art Association meeting: 2-4 p.m., Pass Christian Library, 111 Hiern Ave. Guest speaker: Local artist Tazewell. Details: 452-7741.

Seventh annual cow festival: 2-8 p.m., 31492 Anner Road, Carriere. Fireworks, raffles, hay rides and more. Details: 601-337-2224.

"Blue": 8 p.m., 3 p.m. Oct. 20, Gulfport Little Theatre, 2600 13th Ave. Cost. $15. Details: 864-7983.

Gulf Coast Down Syndrome Society 2013 Buddy Walk: 3 p.m. check-in, 4:15 p.m. walk, Gulfport Sportsplex, just off Landon Road, Gulfport. Details: 447-0270.

South Mississippi Swap meeting: 3-5 p.m., Harmony Hall, 2514 19th Ave., Gulfport. Details: 364-2461.

Nativity B.V.M. Elementary 55th annual Halloween Carnival: 4-10 p.m., 1046 Beach Blvd., Biloxi. Details: 432-2269.

Ocean Springs Elks Lodge 2501 Italian dinner: 5-7:30 p.m., 2501 Beachview Drive. Cost: $10 adults, $5 kids. Details: 872-2501.

Halloween in Woolmarket: 6 p.m., Woolmarket School grounds, 12513 John Lee Road, Biloxi. Details: 388-7170.

Gulfport's Second annual boo halloween quilt Bash: 6-7 p.m., Barksdale Pavilion, Jones Park, Gulfport. Halloween themed event will include a kids train, costume contest and more. Details: 868-5881.

Orange Grove Carnival Association $2,500 drawdown: 6 p.m. doors open, 7 p.m. drawdown, Harrison County Evacuation Center, 15035 County Farm Road, Gulfport. Cost: $25 per ticket admits two. Details: 341-1719.

City of Gautier's Halloween Haunted trails: 6:30-10 p.m., Oct. 19, 25-26 and 31, Shepard State Park, 1034 Graveline Road, Gautier. Details: 497-2244.

Center Stage Theatre Longshot Comedy Improv: 7 p.m., Eisenhower Drive, Biloxi. All seats: $10. Details: 388-6352 or 861-2241.

Mississippi Rollergirls match: 7 p.m., Harrison County Skate Park, DeBuys Road, Gulfport. Tickets: $10 for adults, free for children 12 and under.

Night of a Thousand Screams Haunted House: 7-10 p.m., Oct. 19-20, 26-27 and 31, Pascagoula Recreation Center, 2935 Pasagoula St. Tickets: $5. Details: 938-2356.

Silver Scream in concert: Biloxi Saenger Theater, Reynoir Avenue. Tickets: $20. Details: 297-9975.

Saturday Night dance w/ Nick Mattina and The Checkmates: 8 p.m., French Club, 182 E. Howard Ave., Biloxi. Details: 436-6472.

OCT. 20

Benefit lunch and raffle for Johnny Kirkland: noon-3 p.m., Venues Seafood Restaurant, Caillavet Street and U.S. 90, Biloxi. Details: 365-0212.

Jackson County Fair: rides will open on 4 p.m. Oct. 20-24, 2 p.m. Oct. 25, 11 a.m. Oct. 26 and 12:30 p.m. Oct. 27, Jackson County Fairgrounds, Pascagoula. Art and other exhibits will open at 9 a.m. Details: 762-6043.

VFW Post 6731 breakfast: 8 a.m., 4321 W. Gay Road, D'Iberville.

OCT. 21

Pass Christian Historical Society luncheon: Noon, 203 E. Scenic Drive, Pass Christian. Guest speaker: Amy McLaughlin. Details: 452-7254.

Introduction to Chair Yoga: 1 p.m., Pascagoula Public Library, 3214 Pascagoula St. Class size is limited to the first 30 teens or adults to register. Details: 769-3060, ext. 1.

DAV Chapter 5 general membership meeting: 7 p.m., 2600 23rd Ave., Gulfport. Details: 871-5463.

Gulf Coast Messiah Chorus fall rehearsals: 7 p.m. Mondays, through Dec. 2, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, Jefferson Davis campus. New singers welcome no audition required.

Mississippi Coast Amateur Radio Association monthly meeting: 7 p.m., Gulfport Fire Station, 1515 23rd St., Gulfport. Details: 223-1515.

Latin dance classes: 7:30 p.m., Amour Danzar, 9355 County Farm Road, Gulfport. Classes run for six weeks. Details: 324-3730.

OCT. 22

Harrison County Development Commission Board of Commissioners meeting: 8:15 a.m., 12281 Intraplex Parkway, Gulfport. Details: 896-5020.

Starting a Business-First Steps: 9:30 a.m., The Innovation Center, 1636 Popp's Ferry Road, Biloxi. Details: 396-8661.

Affordable Care Act workshop: 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Gulfport Library, 1708 25th Ave., Gulfport. Details: 871-7171.

American Red Cross blood drive: noon-5 p.m., Hollywood Casino, Cypress Cove Ballroom C, 711 Hollywood Blvd., Bay St., Louis. Details: 224-6107.

Motivational speaker Greg Smith on silencing the negative voice within: 12:45-2 p.m., Knight Non-profit Center, Seaway Road, Gulfport.

Seventh annual Old Biloxi Cemetery Tour: 3:30 p.m. opening ceremony Oct. 22 only, 4-7 p.m. tour. The self-guided tour repeats from 4 to 7 p.m. Oct. 29, Biloxi City Cemetery. Details: 435-6339.

35th annual Salute to the Military: 6 p.m. cocktail reception, 7 p.m. dinner, Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center, U.S. 90, Biloxi. Guest speakers: Gov. Phil Bryant, General James F. Amos, Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Rep. Steven Palazzo and more. Tickets: $60 for civilians and retired military, $50 for uniformed military. Reserved tables of 10 available for $600 for civilians and retired, $500 for uniformed. Details: 604-0014.

Salina & Sal's Sicilian Supper Cooking Class: 6 p.m., Lynn Meadows Discovery Center, 246 Dolan Ave., Gulfport. Tickets: $30 for members, $35 for nonmembers. Details: 897-6039.

Intermediate zombie workshop: 6-7 p.m., Mary C. O'Keefe Cultural Center, 1600 Government St., Ocean Springs. Cost: $85 members, $95 nonmembers. Details: 818-2878.

Tailgate Time Ungala for the Boys and Girls Club: 6-8 p.m., Gulf Hills Resort, Ocean Springs. Tickets: $25 per person, includes food and two drink tickets. All proceeds will benefit the Mary B. Ruddiman Unit. Details: 762-3497.

Mississippi College Singers concert: 7 p.m., First Baptist Church of Long Beach, 300 N Cleveland Ave. Details: 864-2584.

OCt. 23

Pass Christian Chamber of Commerce Breakfast with the Mayor: 7:30 a.m., Pass Christian Yacht Club, 120 S. Market St. Cost: $10. Details: 604-0014.

American Red Cross blood drive: 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Gulfport High School, 100 Perry St., Gulfport. Details: Details: 224-6107.

Singing River Health System AARP Driver Safety Program: 9 a.m., Ocean Springs Hospital boardroom. Cost: $12 for members, $14 for nonmembers. Class size is limited and pre-registration is required. Details: 497-7470.

Friends of the Pass Christian Public Library membership meeting: 6 p.m., 111 Hiern Ave. Guest speaker: Jerusha Bosarge of Character Publishing. Details: 452-4596.

OCT. 24

Downtown Biloxi Farmers Market Festival: 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Under I-110 off Howard and Hopkins, Biloxi. Details: 388-7170.

Seek the Unknown scavenger hunt: 3:30-5 p.m., Pascagoula Public Library, 3214 Pascagoula St. For kids in grades 7 to 12, held in celebration of Teen Read Week. Details: 769-3060.

St. Martin Public Library Halloween Cupcake decorating workshop: 5:30 p.m., St. Martin Library meeting room, 15004 Lemoyne Blvd., St. Martin. Children must be accompanied by an adult and supplies will be furnished. Registration is suggested as seats are limited. Details: 392-3250.

Oysters - Science on the Halfshell: 6 p.m., Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, 1141 Bayview Ave., Biloxi. Details: 475-7047.

Mississippi School of the Arts information event: 6-8 p.m., Home2 Suites by Hilton, 3810 Promenade Parkway, D'Iberville. Parents and prospective students can come learn more about the school. Details: 601-823-1300.

Celebrate Recovery support group meeting: 6:30 p.m. Thursdays, Trinity United Methodist Church, 5007 Lawson Ave., Gulfport.

Oct. 25

Bay BridgeFest 2013: Oct. 25-27, downtown Bay St. Louis. Cost: $6 per day, children 12 and under are free. Free admission for military, EMS, police and firefighters on Oct. 27. Details:

American Red Cross blood drive: 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Camellia Home Health and Hospice, 4211 Hospital Road, Pascagoula. Details: 224-6107.

United Way for Jackson & George Counties Born Learning Outdoor Trail: 10 a.m.-noon, Moss Point Riverfront. The trail will help parents and caregivers support early education for children.

American Red Cross blood drive: 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m., The Pet Clinic, 8195B Woolmarket Road. Details: 224-6107.

Senior Halloween Bash: noon-2 p.m., Donal Snyder Community Center, 2520 Pass Road, Biloxi. Details: 388-2494.

Blossman Family YMCA Fall Fest: 4-6:30 p.m., 1810 Government St., Ocean Springs. The event will include a costume contest, kids games and activities, food and more. Details: 875-5050.

Taste of Harvest Food & Wine Tastings: 5-7 p.m., Redding House, 770 Jackson St., Biloxi. Silent auction, live music and more. Tickets: $40 in advance, $50 at the door. All proceedsd benefit Hands On Mississippi. Details: 697-3714.

Fleur De Lis Society dinner: 5-7 p.m., The French Club, 182 Howard Ave., Biloxi. Cost: $7. Details: 436-6472.

Halloween at Hiller Park: 5:30 p.m., 377 Hiller Drive, Biloxi. Details: 388-7170.

"Godspell Jr.": 7 p.m. Oct. 25-26, Lynn Meadows Discovery Center, 246 Dolan Ave., Gulfport. Presented by the WINGS Performing Arts. Recommended for upper elementary students and above. Tickets: $7 for students, $10 seniors, military and LMDC members, $13 for general admission. Details: 897-6039.

"Misery": 8 p.m. Oct. 25-26, 2 p.m. Oct. 27, 8 p.m. Nov. 1-2, Biloxi Little Theatre, 220 Lee St. Details: 432-8543.

Amour Danzar Friday Night dance: 8-10 p.m., 9355 County Farm Road, Gulfport. Cost: $10. Details: 324-3730.

Oct. 26

Steps To Freedom 5K Run-Walk: 7:30 a.m., across the Biloxi Bay bridge. Registration: $15 per person. Proceeds benefit the Good News Jail and Prison Ministry. Details: 896-0601.

Fishing for Catfish Kids Day: 7:30 a.m. registration, Hiller Park, 377 Hiller Drive, Biloxi. Details: 388-7170.

Orange Grove Kiwanis annual All You Can Eat Pancake Breakfast: 7:30-11 a.m., New Hope Baptist Church, Landon Road, Gulfport. Details: 860-3311.

The Pass Christian Farmers Market, 8 a.m.-noon, War Memorial Park, Pass Christian. Details: 297-3040.

Singing River Health Systems fundraiser: 9-11 a.m., Fort Maurepas, Front Beach Ocean Springs. Sponsored by the SHRS respiratory departments. Details: 224-2979.

Pass Christian Historical Society Trash or Treasure event: 9 a.m.-2 p.m., 203 E. Scenic Drive, Pass Christian. Cost: $20 for the first item, $10 for the second with a three-item limit.

Fourth annual Fall Festival: 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Diamondhead Community Church, 5301 Diamondhead Circle. Raffle proceeds support the missions of the church.

Ocean Springs Middle School 2013 Fall Festival: 10 a.m.-2 p.m., 3600 Hanshaw Road. Ocean Springs. Tickets are $1 and the festival is sponsored by school clubs and organizations in cooperation with the school's PTO. All proceeds will benefit student classes, clubs and teams. Details: 860-0015.

TULLIBEE Base of USSVI and the Subvettes of TULLIBEE Base monthly meeting: 11 a.m., Biloxi Yacht Club, 408 Beach Blvd., Biloxi. Details: 324-8196.

Halloween Festival at LMDC: 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Lynn Meadows Discovery Center, 246 Dolan Ave., Gulfport. Details: 897-6039.

Ocean Springs Municipal Library Princess Tea: 1-2 p.m., Ocean Springs Library, 525 Dewey Ave. Attendees are limited and the event is intended for ages 5 to 10 years old. Princess gowns are encouraged. Details: 875-1193.

Crooked Letter Brewing Company Haunted House Brewery Tour: 1-9 p.m., 1805 Government St., Ocean Springs. Cost: $10 adults, free for those 20 years old and under. Those 17 years and younger must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Details: 238-1414.

Christus Victor Lutheran Church German dinner: 2755 Bienville Blvd., Ocean Springs. Tickets: $15 limited to 100 people. All proceeds will benefit the Christus Victor Lutheran Church Mortgage Principal Fund. Details: 875-2446.

Mississippi Poetry Society, South Branch meeting: 2 p.m., Gautier Library, 2100 Library Lane. Details: 522-0028 or 896-3347.

Biloxi Main Street Drive-in Movie series: 4 p.m. costume contest, Halloween activities at 6 p.m., movie begins at dark. Admission is one can of food for the Salvation Army. Sponsored by The City of Biloxi and the Beau Rivage Casino Resort. Details: 435-6339.

East Central Public Library costume party: 4-6 p.m., 21801 Slider Road, Hurley. Details: 588-6263.

The Zombie Bash CASA-tume party: 6-8 p.m. patron party, 8 p.m.-midnight Zombie Bash, Nicaud residence, 23441 Arcadia Road, Pass Christian. Proceeds benefit CASA abused and neglected children. Advance tickets: $50 each or $85 per couple. Details: 365-9013.

Amour Danzar pot luck Halloween party: 6:30 p.m., 9355 County Farm Road, Gulfport. Details: 324-3730.

"The Rocky Horror Picture Show": 6:30 p.m., Bay St. Louis Little Theatre, 398 Blaize Ave. Tickets: $5, free for theatre members. Details: 467-9024.

"The Rocky Horror Picture Show": 7 p.m., Center Stage Theatre, Eisenhower Drive, Biloxi. Performances continue at Mezo's Juke Joint in Ocean Springs Oct. 29-31. Tickets: $12. Audience participation is encouraged. Details: 388-6258 or 238-4634.

The Road to Victory Award Ceremony: 7-9 p.m., Donal Snyder Community Center, 2520 Pass Road, Biloxi. Cost: $30 per person, or $150 sponsorship. Presented by the Harrison County Federation of Democratic Women. Details: 424-7231 or 861-4597.

Gulfport Junior Auxiliary 64th Charity Ball: 7 p.m.-midnight, Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, U.S. 90, Biloxi. Tickets: $100 per couple. All proceeds go directly to funding Junior Auxiliary programs and services. Details: 697-5192.

Fleur de Lis Society French Club Halloween Party: 8 p.m., 182 E. Howard Ave., Biloxi. Details: 436-6472.

OCT. 27

VFW Post 6731 breakfast: 8-11 a.m., 4321 W. Gay Road, D'Iberville.

American Red Cross blood drive: 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Edgewater Mall, 2600 Beach Blvd., Biloxi. Details: 224-6107.

Handsboro United Methodist Church family Fall festival: 4-6 p.m., 2333 Demaret Drive, Gulfport.

oct. 28

American Red Cross blood drive: 1-6:30 p.m., Edgewater Mall, 2600 Beach Blvd., Biloxi. Details: 224-6107.

Gulf Coast Messiah Chorus fall rehearsals: 7 p.m. Mondays, through Dec. 2, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, Jefferson Davis campus. New singers welcome no audition required.

OCT. 29

American Red Cross blood drive: 8 a.m.-2 p.m., Studio B, IP Casino Resort and Spa, 870 Bayview Ave. Details: 224-6107.

Road to Recovery volunteer training: 9-11 a.m., 417 Security Square, Gulfport. The American Cancer Society is looking for volunteers to drive patients to cancer treatments. Details: 601-520-4740.

Advanced zombie workshop: 6-7 p.m., Mary C. O'Keefe Cultural Center, 1600 Government St., Ocean Springs. Cost: $100 members, $125 nonmembers. Details: 818-2878.

Havana Tropicana Cuban Cooking Class: 6-8:30 p.m., Lynn Meadows Discovery Center, 246 Dolan Ave., Gulfport. Tickets: $30 for members, $35 for nonmembers. Details: 897-6039.

OCT. 30

American Red Cross blood drive: 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Nautilus Plus II Fitness Center, 4363C Leisure Time Drive, Diamondhead. Details: 224-6107.

American Red Cross blood drive: 4-8 p.m., Blue Cliff College, 12251 Bernard Parkway, Gulfport. Details: 224-6107.

OCT. 31

21st annual Pumpkin Patch: 6-8 p.m., Faithview Baptist Church, Saucier. Details: 832-3015.

Source: Sunherald

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

iPhone 5s, 5c to launch on prepaid carrier Cricket Oct. 25

Prepaid wireless carrier Cricket announced on Monday that it will begin carrying both Apple's iPhone 5c and the iPhone 5s iphone cases life proof videos on Oct. 25.

The carrier's pre-register page still lists the two devices as "coming soon," but a press release on Monday confirmed Oct. 25 as the date for their arrival on Cricket. Cricket has not yet revealed pricing for the 5s and 5c, but potential customers may be able to get an idea from prices for the current iPhone models. The carrier sells a 16-gigabyte iPhone 5 for $600, a 16-gigabyte iPhone 4S for $500, and an 8-gigabyte iPhone 4 for $400.

Cricket also makes those costs payable in installments. The iPhone 5, for example, is available with a $25 down payment, with the rest of the cost covered in 23 payments of $25. The iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 are available for $21 and $17 down, respectively, with 23 payments remaining until they are paid off.

Cricket is a prepaid subsidiary of Leap Wireless, and it has some 6.2 million customers across the United States. Leap's network features 4G LTE connectivity, but only in select metropolitan areas .

Cricket was the first prepaid carrier in the U.S. to land the iPhone, securing the iPhone 4S and 4 in June of 2012. With this new generation of iPhones, Virgin Mobile beat Cricket to the punch, launching the iPhone 5s and 5c at the beginning of October.

Source: Appleinsider

Monday, October 14, 2013

Motorcycle driver dies after hitting stalled SUV in Lakewood

<easternp>Posted: 10/14/2013 12:02:05 PM MDT

Updated: 10/14/2013 12:23:38 PM MDT

A motorcycle driver died Sunday night in Lakewood when his bike ran into the back of a stalled SUV.

The fatal crash happened about 11:40 p.m. in the southbound lanes of Sheridan Boulevard just north of West Ohio Avenue, according to a Lakewood Police Department media release.

Witnesses told police a black Ford Explorer was stalled in the right lane of Sheridan when two approaching motorcycles switched from the left lane to the right to pass a slower vehicle. One of the bikes missed the SUV, but the other collided with it.

The driver, who died at the scene, has been identified as 42-year-old Jason Wood. There were no other injuries, police said.

No one was cited in the accident.

Kieran Nicholson: 303-954-1822, or
Source: Denverpost

Monday, October 7, 2013

Imperfect Symmetry, A Stranger in Your Arms, and the rest of your weekend in visual arts | Bleader | Chicago Reader

<couponh3>Imperfect Symmetry, A Stranger in Your Arms, and the rest of your weekend in visual arts

Posted by Jillian Sandler on 10.03.13 at 12:35 PM

Feast your eyes on something beautiful this weekend. Here's what's going down in visual arts:

Thursday 10/3

State of Mind: New California Art Circa 1970 at the University of Chicago's Smart Museum of Art A collection of unconventional art that turned up in California in the late 1960s and early '70s. Talk by curators Constance M. Lewallen and Karen Moss at 5 PM. One of our visual arts recommendations for fall.

Imperfect Symmetry: A Compendium at Columbia College Chicago Averill and Bernard Leviton A+D Gallery A group show featuring different perspectives on imperfect symmetry. Reception 5-8 PM.

Friday 10/4

The Terrestrial, The Celestial, and the Imagined Inbetween at Chicago Artists' Coalition HATCH resident artists Noelle Allen, Brent Fogt, and Nicholas Sagan present pieces including collaged drawings, fiber installations, and prints. Reception 6-9 PM.

Outside Art and Graffiti Show by Steve Pollack and Cindy Kurman Barrie at Ornot Gallery Local artist Pollack and photographer Barrie present their work. Opening reception 6-11 PM.

Saturday 10/5

A Stranger in Your Arms at Comfort Station Fittingly hosted in October, this exhibition curated by Jessie Devereaux features pieces such as screen prints and paintings that tap into the darkness associated with the Halloween season. The Reader's Sarah Nardi says "Devereaux has constructed an atmosphere of earthly disquiet." Opening reception 7-9 PM.

Sunday 10/6

Theaster Gates: 13th Ballad at the Museum of Contemporary Art The closing day of an exhibition that served as a continuation of Gates' 12 Ballads for Huguenot House, a project that detailed his renovations of a house in Kassel, Germany.

Tags: State of Mind: New California Art Circa 1970, University of Chicago, Smart Museum of Art, Constance M. Lewallen, Karen Moss, Imperfect Symmetry: A Compendium, Columbia College Chicago, Averill and Bernard Leviton A+D Gallery, Chicago Artists' Coalition, Noelle Allen, Brent Fogt, Nicholas Sagan, Outside Art and Graffiti Show, Steve Pollack, Cindy Kurman Barrie, Ornot Gallery, A Stranger in Your Arms, Comfort Station, Jessie Devereaux, Theaster Gates: 13th Ballad, Museum of Contemporary Art, 12 Ballads for Huguenot House, Kassel, Germany, Image

Source: Chicagoreader

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Card Player TV -- Meet World Series of Poker November Niner Sylvain Loosli

<ninerp>After seven days of play, 6,352 players were narrowed down to a final table of nine in the 2013 World Series of Poker main event. One of these nine players will earn the title of World Champion and more than $8.3 million dollars. Card Player TV caught up with France's Sylvain Loosli, who will enter the final table in sixth chip position (with 19.6 million), to learn more.

When asked why, as a cash game player, he decided to make the trip to Las Vegas to play this tournament Loosli told Card Player TV, "Yeah, just because it's kind of a dream for every poker player. It's an amazing tournament, there's a huge prize pool and a lot of media coverage. If you can perform well in this one it is amazing... everybody is behind you and it is just very special."

The 26-year-old is originally from Toulon in the south of France but currently lives in London, where he rooms with Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier. Loosli is a professional poker player, with his bread and butter being $25-$50 no-limit hold'em online. He has been playing professionally for nearly 3 years, but as a result of his focus on cash games he has only one tournament score to his name: a $3,198 cash for a 24th-place finish in an prelim. Loosli is guaranteed at least a $733,224 payday for making the November Nine, but will surely have his eyes on the $8.3 million first-place prize and the distinction of becoming the first French main event champion.

Check out the video interview, in which you can learn more about Loosli's background in poker, how he feels about representing France and his thoughts on his chances of winning come November 4th:

Source: Cardplayer

Friday, October 4, 2013

hybrid skins combines fashion with nanotechnology + cloning

<lizardp>hybrid skins combines fashion with nanotechnology and cloning
'make your maker ' video still by lucy mcrae
all images courtesy of tetem art space

combining fashion with advances in nanotechnology, genetic manipulation and cloning, the exhibition 'hybrid skins' displays futuristic visions of a new world. the creepy, animalistic pieces envision a time where the body and nature are able to be copied and personalized. predicting new ethical and aesthetic possibilities through these unusual extensions to the human form, the show raises moral questions: is your body and genetic code your property that you may copy, remix and destroy? is the use of biological material from a lab innocent, because no human or animal has died, or does it have its own memory and life? and can we change the nature to the whims of fashion?

'hybrid skins' is located at tetem art space in the netherlands and features works by anouk wipprecht and daniel schatzmayr, local androids, jalila essaïdi, lucy mcrae, nancy tilbury (studio xo), bart hess, harm rensink, clive van heerden, jack mama, peter gal, philips, anna dumitriu, marieka ratsma and the verge. the free exhibition runs from 10 october - 24 november 2013, with a performance by local androids on thursday, 10 october at 7 pm.

'like living organisms'
video courtesy of local androids

'like living organisms' by local androids

detail view of the 'like living organisms' piece by local androids

'robotic spider dress, creepy couture'
video courtesy of anouk wipprecht

'spider dress' by anouk wipprecht + daniel schatzmayr

'biomimicry shoe' by marieka ratsma

'skin sucka' nancy tilbury (studio XO), bart hess, harm rensink, clive van heerden, jack mama and peter gal

'skin sucka' detail view

'2.6g 329m/s' bulletproof skin by jalila essaïdi

see the article 'bulletproof skin made from spider silk proteins and human skin cells' previously covered by designboom here.

designboom has received this project from our 'DIY submissions' feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers .
Source: Designboom

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Apple's iPhone 5S sensors are massively screwed up (and so are the games that rely on them)

Apple appears to have a serious hardware problem on its hands as the internet sensors of its new flagship phone, the iPhone 5s iphone kindle cases for girls to buy, are not reporting accurate numbers.

Numerous reports on Apple support communities indicate that people believe the sensors the report level, motion, and acceleration seem to be reporting incorrect information. And a detailed Gizmodo test indicates that indeed, they are "all screwed up." I tested the iPhone 5S myself and found that the iHandy Level app indicates plumb (straight up and down) when the phone is clearly at an angle, and the Gyroscope app reports pitch and roll numbers that indicate the phone is on a slope when actually, it's on a flat and level table.

My iPhone 5, other the other hand, reports numbers that are much more accurate.

Here's just one example:

This has real-world implications, as Gizmodo points out, and it's not just that your shelves or paintings will hand crooked (of course, I'd never use an iPhone sensor to hang a painting or install furniture). Games also rely on those sensors, and gamers who want to beat the game or beat their friends may run into trouble - like I did in Real Racing 3.

As you can see, when the phone is flat on the table, the car turns left and hits the bumper:

I have asked Apple for a comment, and will update this story when I hear more.

Source: VentureBeat

Alex Rodriguez's team finally gets shot to grill Biogenesis founder Anthony Bosch at hearing

<teamimg src="!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_635/arod4s-1-web.jpg">

Mark Bonifacio/New York Daily News

Alex Rodriguez's high-priced legal team was expected to try to dig up dirt on Anthony Bosch at Day 4 of hearing on A-Rod's doping ban.

Alex Rodriguez's legal team had been salivating over the opportunity to rip apart Biogenesis founder Anthony Bosch ever since the steroid-stained superstar's 211-game suspension was announced by Major League Baseball on Aug. 5, and on Thursday, A-Rod's high-priced advisers finally got their chance.

New York criminal defense attorney Joe Tacopina began his cross-examination of Bosch shortly after MLB lawyers finished questioning the Biogenesis "biochemist" on Day 4 of Rodriguez's appeal of his unprecedented suspension at MLB's Park Ave. offices, according to a source familiar with the proceedings.

Tacopina and the other high-priced lawyers on Rodriguez's legal team were expected to mount an all-out assault on Bosch's credibility, attacking him as a drug-dealing liar who turned on the Yankee third baseman to save his own skin. Team A-Rod was expected to point out for arbitrator Fredric Horowitz that Bosch, whose now-shuttered South Florida anti-aging clinic allegedly supplied performance-enhancing drugs to Rodriguez and dozens of other athletes, is the target of state and federal investigations and had been fined $5,000 by the Florida Department of Health for practicing medicine without a license.

Rodriguez's attorneys were also expected to accuse MLB officials of intimidating Bosch into cooperating with them, and then buying his testimony. Bosch is a defendant in a lawsuit MLB filed in Florida state court in March that accuses him and other Biogenesis associates of tortious interference with baseball's basic agreement with the Players Association. MLB agreed to drop Bosch from the suit, cover his legal expenses, indemnify him from litigation that may arise as a result of his testimony and put in a good word with law-enforcement officials.

Bosch took the witness stand on Monday afternoon and has spent much of the week validating a trove of documents and electronic communications that MLB officials believe show that Rodriguez obtained performance-enhancing drugs from Biogenesis on numerous occasions.

The Daily News reported on Wednesday that A-Rod's lawyers said in their opening statement that Rodriguez - who has acknowledged that he used steroids from 2001 to 2003 - believed that the products he received from Bosch and Biogenesis were legal supplements and not banned substances. A spokesman for Rodriguez disputed that in a statement issued on Wednesday but did not contradict any of the elements in the story.

Rodriguez and Bosch were friendly for several years before the Biogenesis scandal broke and shattered their relationship, sources have told The News. BALCO founder Victor Conte told The News in August that Rodriguez referred to Bosch as his "nutrition guy" during a May 2012 meeting about legal sports products in Conte's Bay Area offices.

Meanwhile, a notably smaller group of supporters greeted Rodriguez as he arrived at Major League Baseball's Park Ave. offices at 9:15 a.m. on Thursday. More than 150 Rodriguez supporters had rallied outside MLB headquarters on Wednesday, but only a few dozen people were on the scene the next morning when A-Rod and his advisers arrived for the hearing.

Hispanics Across America president Fernando Mateo, the activist who organized the daily rallies, said he expected more protesters to arrive later in the evening for a candlelight vigil in support of Rodriguez. But the crowd seemed to shrink by the time A-Rod and his advisers left MLB's offices on Thursday evening.

"We are not here to say A-Rod is an altar boy," Mateo said. "We are here to say he should be treated fairly. He should have been given a 50-game suspension like the other players. If he is guilty, he should be punished accordingly."

Rodriguez's appeal will continue on Friday, but will be put on hold until later this month because of conflicts in Horowitz's schedule.

Source: Nydailynews

Nexus 5 said to be 'half the price' of the iPhone 5S

A source says the new Google phone will come with an attractive price for those that have been hankering for a new Nexus.

(Credit: MacRumors)

The hype and rumors we're hearing around the upcoming Nexus 5, expected from LG and Google later this month, is that it could instantly become the new Android phone to beat. But the latest whisperings hint that it could also give the iPhone 5s iphone iphone 4 cases hello kitty sparkle verizon a run for its money when it comes to how much of your money you have to shell out for one.

TechRadar says a "source familiar with Google" has told the site that the successor to the popular but LTE-less Nexus 4 will ship in the latter part of October and cost "half the price" of the iPhone 5S.

What's a little tricky about this is that the source seems to be referring to United Kingdom prices and ship dates, which can be different from what we see in the United States. If the Nexus 5 were to be half of what an unlocked iPhone 5S sells for at retail stateside (it starts at $649 for 16 GB contract-free with a T-Mobile SIM), that would mean we could see a new unlocked Nexus that, according to TechRadar's source, will meet the specs of the iPhone 5S, but for less than $350.

That would certainly be a welcome deal for Nexus fans hoping for a repeat of the $299 price tag for an unlocked Nexus 4 right out of the gate.

We'll see in the coming weeks if Google actually offers such a pre-holiday bargain on a top-flight phone, or if we've just caught wind of some sort of UK-only pricing scheme or just total bunk.

Be sure to read up on everything else we expect in a new Nexus, and let us know in the comments if you plan to get one of your own.

Source: Cnet

Apple iPhone 5S Review

With every major iPhone redesign comes the inevitable S series refresh a year later. Like the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 3GS before it, the new iPhone 5s iphone cases otterbox levis commuter jacket takes last year's form factor and adds improved camera technology, a faster processor, and new features exclusive to the latest hardware. But while the iPhone 5S may be predictable, it's nonetheless exceptional, maintaining and improving upon Apple's outstanding software experience and the stunning design of the iPhone 5.

Save for the new, slightly larger camera and dual-LED 'TrueTone' flash on the back and TouchID fingerprint sensor in the home button, the iPhone 5S is identical to last year's model. Apple has maintained the same hardened glass front and aluminum chassis, but now it's offering two new colors - space gray and gold. Space gray is more or less last year's black model with a slightly lighter shade of aluminum, but gold is a true first for the iPhone series. Depending on where your preferences lie, the gold version may be regarded as either gaudy or gorgeous, but regardless of personal taste, it's refreshing to see Apple embracing colors outside of its longstanding black and white iPhone variants.

In spite of any drastic design changes, the iPhone 5S remains one of the best looking, most well-constructed smartphones on the market. Although the competition has shown renewed interest in design with devices like the HTC One, Lumia 925, and the Moto X, Apple remains unrivaled in its meticulous consideration for hardware.

Under the hood, the iPhone 5S' advancements are far more significant. Apple has laid claim to producing the world's first 64-bit processor in the world with the new A7 system-on-a-chip (SOC). While the actionable benefits of its 64-bit architecture are limited until more apps and games are developed natively or optimized to take advantage, the A7 has perceivable impact on the speed of iOS 7 and apps. Browsing through iOS 7's animation-heavy interface and launching apps is notably faster than the iPhone 5. In GeekBench 3 and 3D Mark benchmark tests, the iPhone 5S more than doubles the CPU scores of the iPhone 5 and three times the framerates when running intense graphics.

The iPhone 5S also commands a substantial lead in processing power over the HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4, accounting for a graphics boost of up to 32% and 38% in CPU benchmarks.

But the A7 means more than raw power - it actually enables useful features, like the iPhone 5S' expanded camera functionality.

Though the iPhone 5S' camera retains the 8-megapixel count of the iPhone 5, it's now capable of capturing 120 frames-per-second slow-motion video and 10 frames-per-second burst photography. Driven by the A7, the camera snaps photos and videos faster for cleaner, more detailed, and more vibrant shots. Burst mode's rapid capture speeds eliminate the need to time the perfect shot - just hold the shutter button down and the iPhone %S will snap a string of photos, automatically presenting the best of the bunch. Slow-motion, although viewed as a novelty, is actually one of my favorite features of the iPhone 5S.

Everything - even the most mundane of actions - looks incredible and epic in slow motion with smooth, detailed progressions. While many are certain to embrace the iPhone 5S' slow-motion camera for comedy, an equal share will create stunning montages.

Apple has also made improvements to the lens and sensor. The rear-facing camera now has a ƒ2.2 aperture lens and 1.5µ pixel sensor, which gathers and processes more light for better low-light photography and richer composition. Though the improvements aren't so significant to warrant an upgrade by itself, the iPhone 5S has one of the best smartphone cameras on the market.

The feature most likely to attract attention, however, is the new fingerprint scanner. Apple has built a new sensor into the home button, which is capable of detecting certain distinguishing elements of your fingerprint almost instantaneously. By simply placing your thumb on the sensor - or any finger, for that matter - the iPhone 5S can identify your fingerprint and unlock your phone. When you set up the iPhone 5S for the first time (or access the settings anytime thereafter), you can register a new fingerprint profile via a brief calibration process. The system asks that you repeatedly press your finger to the sensor, including the edges of your print, so that it can capture and store a unique TouchID. The iPhone 5S supports multiple profiles for multiple fingers and users, allowing you to give loved ones streamlined access to your device while maintaining a high level of security. It even allows you to forego the tedium of entering a password every time you want to download a new app - just scan your finger and you're good to go.

Initially, it took awhile for me to shake the learned behavior of waking my display and quickly entering a pin code, but once I became accustomed to TouchID, it became almost like second-nature. Gone are the days where I would mistakenly hit the wrong digit or press one number too many times. Now, I don't have to look at my phone while I unlock it - I just go straight to the primary UI and launch an app.

The only I gripes I've found with the iPhone 5S are minor. Calibrating the TouchID for each finger on either hand that you may choose to use to unlock your device can be time consuming. There were also times - albeit rarely - when the TouchID would fail to recognize my fingerprint, causing me to make repeated attempts before just unlocking the device manually, thus defeating the purpose entirely.

Apple is also becoming increasingly behind the curve in terms of battery life. While the iPhone 5S lasts for a day's worth of casual use, charge levels are substantially undercut by any rigorous app or game usage. The iPhone 5S remains within the acceptable margins, but falls short of larger Android and Windows Phone devices. I also encountered a few odd software bugs, wherein third-party apps would crash randomly and cause the OS to revert to the boot-up logo. It's possible that the issues stem from the absence of patched support for the A7's 64-bit architecture or lingering issues with iOS 7, but in either scenario, should be resolved easily with future updates.

Source: Ign

Otterbox Introduces New iPhone 5/5s Case With Space for Credit Cards and Cash

Otterbox has introduced iPhone case/wallet combination, the Commuter Series Wallet. The $45 case includes space for 3 credit cards and a single dollar bill, while coming in black, white/grey and pink/grey color combinations.

The new case competes against other wallet 5s iphone cases otterbox pink just like a pill lyrics like TwelveSouth's BookBook, as well as dozens of other wallet cases on the market.

- Multi-layer case guards against damage to your device
- Slimline design hides contents, keeping them safe and secure
- Self-adhering screen protector guards against scratches and scrapes to the glass display
- Access drawer holds up to three cards and one bill
- Audible click closure gives you peace of mind knowing your items are securely enclosed
- Access Wallet drawer contents without turning case over

The Commuter Series Wallet case, for the iPhone 5 and 5s, is available from Otterbox and other retailers for $45.
Source: Macrumors

Lunatik TAKTIK cases for iPhone 5s: Extreme peace of mind

Summary: Lunatik has issued updated versions of its ultra-protective, extreme lifestyle 5s iphone cases otterbox commuter case for the iPhone 5s.

Anyone who follows this blog knows that I am a huge fan of protective cases for mobile devices. Recently, I looked at OtterBox's latest Defender case designs for the iPhone 5s and 5c.

While I still believe that OtterBox is one of the better cases on the market, recent design changes in the product to accommodate the Touch ID sensor in the new iPhone 5s may have reduced the effectiveness of some of its protection.

So if you really want to add a little bit more fudge factor to your active lifestyle and increase your peace of mind when carrying these expensive devices, there's another solution on the market: The Lunatik TAKTIK.

Lunatik has two cases on the market to address active as well as extreme lifestyles. The TAKTIK Strike, for both iPhone 5s and iPhone 5, is a multi-layered, machine screw-sealed and thick "sarcophagus" enclosure for your mobile device.

The bezels are made out of an impact-resistant polymer, which is surrounded by a silicone, 9mm-thick impact truss, accompanied by PVD-coated steel hardware with aluminum port covers. This is a case designed to take the rigors of daily use and abuse and then some.

What I most like about the case is the tight fit from screwing the enclosure shut, as well as the high elevation of the bezel from the screen area, which is critical for protecting the screen from damage if it happens to fall flat towards the display area. At $60 for both the white or black versions, I happen to think the price is right for what you are getting, which is a lot of peace of mind for an otherwise fragile and slippery device.

Unlike the OtterBox Defender, the TAKTIK Strike does not have a permanent screen protector, but I don't think this is a major deficiency in the product's design.

For those of you with "extreme" lifestyles, there is the TAKTIK Extreme for the iPhone 5s and 5, which adds a secondary layer of Corning Gorilla Glass. This doubles the price of the case ($124) and it also, in the case of the 5s, completely covers the Touch ID sensor, leaving it usable as a home button only and thus requiring the traditional pin-code screen unlock and password entry for App Store purchases.

However, my guess is that anyone wanting to use this case on a 5s probably doesn't care about this issue.

Have you pre-ordered your TAKTIK Strike or Extreme for your iPhone 5s? Talk back and let me know.
Source: Zdnet

OpticsPlanet Gets First Access to New Gear From Armasight

<digitalp>Northbrook, IL (PRWEB) September 05, 2013 looks to improve their extensive product line by adding fourteen new products to their selection of popular Armasight brand. The Armasight line is expanding rapidly and OpticsPlanet is getting first access to these great products with some of the best prices online.

These Armasight products range from the Vulcan 2.5-5x Ghost MG Night Vision Rifle Scope to the Venom Gen 1+ Night Vision Goggles, and everything in between. The Vulcan 2.5-5x Ghost MG Night Vision Rifle Scope is the ultimate in generation 3 night vision. This rifle scope was designed for the avid hunter, with top of the line features like a wireless remote control and a 2X magnifier which allows the user to switch from 2.5X to 5X system in seconds. For beginner hunters looking to add to their kit, the Venom Gen 1+ Night Vision Goggles are an ideal start. As one of the most up-to-date and affordable devices, they offer peak performance. Other new products include Armasight monoculars, night vision units, and thermal imaging rifle scopes. All are held to the highest of standards of quality that shooters are accustomed to in Armasight products.

One scope they are particularly proud of is the Armasight Zeus 4 Thermal Imaging Rifle Scope. This scope has the proven 160x120 micro-bolometer core with the ergonomic features of a handheld scope for more convenience. Fog, haze, smoke, and dust have little to no effect on the Zeus 4 Thermal Imager. This scope is a perfect tool for force protection, police SWAT officers, border patrol officers, and special operations forces due to its functionality both in day and night settings.

The Armasight brand is a leader in its field of night vision and thermal imaging. With this new product expansion, OpticsPlanet continues to offer the most up-to-date gear to their customers.

About OpticsPlanet, Inc.
Founded in 2000, OpticsPlanet, Inc. is the leading online destination for technical and high-performance gear. OpticsPlanet, Inc. serves demanding enthusiasts and professionals who are passionate about their jobs, serious about their recreation, and devoted to their service. Currently offering over 700,000 items from 2,500 brands in 300 niche specialty categories, OpticsPlanet, Inc.'s wide selection combined with great prices, in-house customer service and a knowledgeable team of specialists has helped it grow into one of the largest online retailers in the world.

In 2012, the company was recognized for the sixth straight year by Internet Retailer Magazine as one of the top 500 e-retailers in the United States. OpticsPlanet, Inc. has also been recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of the top 5,000 fastest growing companies in the country, and the Better Business Bureau has ranked them as A+.

Some of the stores in OpticsPlanet, Inc.'s portfolio include, - the world's first members only store devoted to gear and the company's fastest growing ecommerce property -,, and

Source: Prweb

Steelcase, Herman Miller report mixed second quarter results

<fabricp>Steelcase Inc. and Herman Miller Inc. both reported modest sales growth for their most recent quarters.

Zeeland-based Herman Miller reported sales of $468.1 million for the first quarter of the 2014 fiscal year, a 4.1 percent increase from a year earlier. Net income for the quarter that ended Aug. 31 totaled $22.5 million, or 38 cents per share, up 12.5 percent from the same period a year earlier. Herman Miller expects sales in the present second quarter to grow 4 percent to 8 percent from a year ago to $460 million to $475 million with net income of 38 cents to 42 cents per share, minus the $223 million cost of terminating its pension plan during the quarter.

Grand Rapids-based Steelcase reported sales of $757.6 million for the second quarter of FY 2014, up 1.7 percent, and lower net income of $27.6 million, 22 cents per diluted share, versus $29.5 million, or 23 cents per diluted share, a year earlier. Six-month sales for Steelcase were flat at $1.42 billion and net income declined to $40.8 million from $42.7 million. Steelcase expects sales for the present quarter to grow 4 percent to 7 percent to $755 million to $780 million and higher net income of 23 cents to 27 cents per share.

Source: Mibiz

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Time to prepare Halloween decor

The leaves are changing, the temperature is dropping and halloween decorations inflatables is right around the corner. so let's decorate!

Pumpkins are a tradition for Halloween decoration. Lighting them up at night supposedly keeps the creepies away, but mostly those lit-up decorations make for a seasonally festive look. Yes, go ahead and carve some interesting faces on them, but you can also cut out the top, clean out the inside and place flowers in the pumpkin for an interesting seasonal centerpiece on the table. Placing a small vase that won't be visible inside the pumpkin will allow for the flowers to stand properly and also allow you to add water to the stems.

Are you more interested in a fancier look? You can paint the pumpkins in silver or gold and attach jewels in some sort of pattern for a classy finish. A black cloth on the table with a few silver or gold pumpkins added is a festive Halloween look. Another idea with the black tablecloth is to put a white lace tablecloth over it.

Can you draw? Then make your own tablecloth decoration. Pick whatever color tablecloth you want for this Halloween decoration and draw spider webs and spiders on it with white fabric marker. "R.I.P." and "BOO!" can be added, as well.

Are you having friends over for Halloween dinner? Make little name-card holders for them. Buy little pumpkins. Cut small place cards out of the black paper. Write each person's name on the black paper in orange or red ink. Glue a toothpick to the place card and then slip it onto the pumpkin.

Candles - lots of candles - create the right atmosphere for a Halloween party. Turn the lights off and only light the room with candles. Eerie-looking. (And, of course, always be careful when you're dealing with fire!)

To welcome guests and trick-or-treaters at your front door, make a scarecrow. Take old clothes (pants, shirts, shoes) and stuff them. You can use gloves for hands. For the head, a lightweight ball will work if you cradle it in the shirt. A big hat will hide a good amount of the ball. Place the scarecrow on a chair outside your door and you have a greeter for your guests.

Enjoy the holiday. Eat lots of candy.

Source: Newsobserver

DVD Review: 'This is the End' plays into hands of Franco, Rogen fans

<halloweentown high dvdp>Brad Pitt kissed the world goodbye. The "Shaun of the Dead" folks did, too.

But none of the A-level stars quite approached doomsday like James Franco's crowd.

"This is the End" sends up that whole good old boys club that has produced so many new millennium comedies.

"Pineapple Express," "Superbad" and "Knocked Up" set the stage for something like this - something so meta it's like visiting a fraternity and knowing the secret handshake.

Playing heightened versions of themselves, Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, Danny McBride, Craig Robinson and Jonah Hill drop by James Franco's house for what they think is just another Hollywood party. Instead, it's the end of the earth - the Apocalypse, as Baruchel discerns.

Stuck in a bachelor pad that reflects its owner's self-involvement ("This place is like a piece of me," Franco says), they figure out how to survive while sinkholes and fires claim dozens of lesser friends.

Stuffed with star cameos (Rihanna, Mindy Kaling and a very funny Michael Cera among them), "This is the End" namechecks plenty of stars, shows and reputations. It trumps up a feud between Hill and Baruchel, hints at Franco's sexuality and lets Emma Watson put a boot to her reputation as Harry Potter's Hermione.

And then? The film - co-written and co-directed by Rogen - takes on a horror film vibe. A beast emerges from the ground and threatens to take out everyone involved.

Easily, you can see how this story was hatched while the guys were actually at a James Franco party. It sends up TMZ, rap stars and entourages. It proves the stars are as enamored with sci-fi films as their fans.

Of the bunch, McBride is most consistently funny. He's the rogue friend who eats the remaining food, disses the host and ad libs with purpose. When he grabs a second glass of water "This is the End" reaches out to audiences who have never heard of "Freaks and Geeks."

But as delightful as it may be for fans, "This is the End" is just as niche-y as the NBC series that introduced Apatow's army.

Too inside to be embraced by a large audience, it'll have to hope for repeat viewings to justify another excellent adventure.

When it turns horror filmish (you know because Hill changes from the charming "Moneyball" star to something else), it's a quick sprint to the blue light special ending.

Rogen and co-director Evan Goldberg save a surprise for the end (it's a good one) but seem exhausted.

"This is the End" looks like every 2 a.m. idea they ever came up with put in one project.

Franco, Hill and McBride play along nicely and Michael Cera is so uncommonly good someone should tap into the persona he introduces.

"This is the End" won't stand as the funniest film of the summer but it will give the "Pineapple Express" crowd something substantial to chew on while a director like Apatow decides what to do next.

Source: Siouxcityjournal

FEINBERG FORECAST: Updated Projections (With 22 Weeks Until the 86th Oscars)

<halloween dvd projectionsp>

Every week until the Oscars on March 2, 2014, 's lead awards analyst The Hollywood Reporter Scott Feinberg will post an updated "Feinberg Forecast," reflecting his latest take on the standings of the contenders in each of the major categories. For more about Scott and how he arrives at his projections, scroll to the bottom of this post. Here, meanwhile, is a list of developments since the last forecast that helped to shape this one...

  • Several high-profile contenders -- Sony Pictures Classics' Foxcatcher and The Weinstein Co.'s making the path to a nomination a little easier for other contenders. Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that Paramount's The Wolf of Wall Street will not make its previously-announced Nov. 15 release date and could also end up getting pushed to 2014 The Immigrant and Grace of Monaco -- have been pulled out of the 2013 awards season and into 2014, for a variety of reasons, .
  • The 51st New York Film Festival got underway on Friday night. The opening night screening was the world premiere of Sony's Captain Phillips, with the director, stars and real people who inspired the film all in attendance.
  • The Hollywood Film Awards announced that it will present, at its 17th edition on Oct. 21, its and Hollywood Supporting Actor Award to Prisoners' Jake Gyllenhaal, Hollywood Supporting Actress Award to August: Osage County's Julia Roberts Hollywood Breakout Performance Award to Dallas Buyers Club's Jared Leto.
  • Racing against the Oct. 1 deadline to name their official submission for consideration for the best foreign language film Oscar, a number of new countries revealed their picks. Among others, Hong Kong went with Wong Kar-Wai's kung-fu flick The Grandmaster, Israel tapped Yuval Adler's Ophir Award-winning thriller Bethlehem , which was a fan favorite at the recent Telluride and Toronto film fests.
  • This weekend at the box-office, Warner Bros.' returning Prisoners -- which topped the charts last weekend with a $21.4 million take in the same corridor from which the studio's Argo launched with a $19.5 million take the previous year -- held off Universal's newcomer Rush to claim the #2 spot ($11.3 million to $10.3 million) behind Sony's best animated feature Oscar hopeful Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2, which led the field with $35 million in sales. The film with the highest per-screen average though, and growing buzz, is Fox Searchlight's Enough Said, which held strong in its second week in limited release, averaging $9,317 on 227 screens.

And, without further ado, here is the latest forecast...

About the Feinberg Forecast

Scott has been forecasting the Oscars since 2001 and has one of the strongest track records at doing so. His best showings came in 2006 and 2013, when he correctly called 21 out of 24 winners. He was the only pundit to project best picture nominations for The Reader (2008), The Blind Side (2009) and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011), among other long-shots.

He factors into his projections personal impressions (based on advance screenings), publicly-available information (release dates, genres, talent rosters and teasers/trailers often offer valuable clues), historical considerations (comparing and contrasting how other films with similar pedigrees have resonated), precursor awards (some awards groups have historically correlated with the Academy more than others), and conversations with industry insiders (including fellow members of the press, awards strategists, filmmakers and awards voters).

Source: Hollywoodreporter