20 Dec
2019

Can President Donald Trump refuse latest offer from Jose Canseco?

first_imgAs evidenced by his latest outlandish offer to President Donald Trump, it’s clear that former Oakland A’s star Jose Canseco still likes swinging for the fences.With his tweet to the president Wednesday, Canseco is bidding not only to help run the White House, the notorious steroid user is also offering to pump up Mr. Trump.Hey little buddy @realDonaldTrump u need a bash brother for Chief if Staff. Got a secret reorg plan already. Also worried about you looking more like a Twinkie everyday. I …last_img

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20 Dec
2019

Warriors’ Steve Kerr offers a sneak preview on how he will handle next season’s roster

first_imgLAS VEGAS – Should he have time between practices and hearty meals, Warriors coach Steve Kerr can venture to the casinos here and learn more sobering news about his team.Unlike the past five years, the general public does not believe the Warriors will win the NBA championship. Bovada tabbed the Warriors with 14/1 odds to win the NBA championships, while granting more favoritism to the Houston Rockets (12/1), Philadelphia 76ers (10/1), Milwaukee Bucks (6/1), Los Angeles Lakers (7/2) and Los …last_img

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12 Dec
2019

In-Camera or in Post: How to Get the Same Effects as Expensive Lenses

first_imgYou can add the first two of these in After Effects with another great template, this time from RocketStock. You need to map the lens flares to the flares in your shot, which can be fine for a couple of shots, but it could be a huge headache for an entire feature film.These experiments concluded that it’s smart to test the effect you’re thinking about before you dive headlong into in-camera or post effects, to see where the best medium is: control vs. time. Then, at least you’ll know what you’re getting into.Looking for more video production tips and tricks? Check out these articles.Master Premiere Pro’s Timeline with Source PatchingWhat to Consider When Upgrading to the Pocket Cinema 6KThe Lost Joys of Using DIY Filmmaking Equipment3 Tips for Stabilizing Smartphone Videography5 Documentary-Style Lenses for 5 Budgets In this article, we take a look at three common effects and whether the post-production version lives up to the in-camera effect.One of the oldest questions in digital cinematography is “in-camera or in post?” Do stylistic choices like lens type, filters, and lens shake work better if you use them with the camera on set, or can you produce the same effect in the comfort of your post-production home — without compromising the original negative?Both approaches have their advantages and disadvantages. In-camera effects are generally cheaper, and you can control their details on the day of shooting — with the director present for sign-off. Post-production effects take longer, but you get finer control, and if they’re too over the top, you can dial them down — or dial them up if you need to. Like any post effect, they cost more. However, they can cost a lot more if you’re trying to apply the effect — like anamorphic lens style — to an entire film.Let’s start with the easiest: lens filters. DPs who think modern digital cameras and lenses produce an image that is too sharp and clinical, and lacks the chemical imperfections of film, use pieces of glass or plastic that screw onto the lens or slide into the matte box. Tiffen’s Black Pro-Mist softens images in a very filmic way — especially skin imperfections — and blooms the highlights. It comes in different strengths, as well as screw-on and drop-in formats. We found that the mid-tone detail slider in DaVinci Resolve did a very similar job to Black Pro-Mist — as well as turning down contrast. The best result was adding the lightest kind of Black Pro-Mist 1/8 on the lens, then using Resolve to increase the effect. That way you’re not locked into an extreme look.The next challenge was camera shake. A small amount of camera shake finds its way into most handheld shots, and it is pretty standard. A violent and dramatic camera shaking effect, like those used in fight scenes or earthquakes, is hard to control and not healthy for the camera (over a long period, it can shake parts loose from the rig). There is even a device called the “image shaker” that mounts on the 15mm rails in front of the camera, shaking the image without shaking the delicate insides of the camera.With some motion blur, we found it pretty easy to add camera shake in post by using free templates on the internet and mapping the footage to them. Be aware that you’ll need to shoot at a higher resolution than your delivery resolution, so you have room to move the frame around and not see black around the outside of your frame.The last and most difficult in-camera effect we tried in post was anamorphic lenses. Many DPs are obsessed with anamorphic, but few movie-goers know or care which lens shape a filmmaker uses. That said, they can probably work on a conscious level to associate the film with other movies — both classic and contemporary — shot anamorphic.The three main visual qualities of anamorphic are vignetting, edge distortion, and an oval horizontal lens flare.last_img read more

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28 Oct
2019

10 months agoEx-Chelsea striker Cascarino backing Arnautovic move

first_imgEx-Chelsea striker Cascarino backing Arnautovic moveby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveFormer Chelsea striker Tony Cascarino says they should move for West Ham striker Marko Arnautovic.Cascarino has even compared the charismatic West Ham star to Manchester United legend Eric Cantona.“You know the one player I’d really want to take? Arnautovic – I’d take him in a heartbeat,” Cascarino said. “I think he’d fit perfectly into Chelsea.“The thing with Arnautovic – he reminds me of that Eric Cantona mindset. He thinks he’s good enough to be up there at the top table, and he is.“He was dreadful at times last year but there’s a real player in there and he needs a challenge and maybe the challenge is West Ham?” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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18 Oct
2019

Special court refuses to hear Rajeev Kumars anticipatory bail plea

first_imgNew Delhi: Former Kolkata police commissioner Rajeev Kumar moved a special court in Barasat on Tuesday, seeking anticipatory bail in connection with a CBI notice to him for appearing before it in the multi-crore Saradha chit-fund scam. But the special court judge Sanjib Talukdar refused to hear Kumar’s plea, saying it does not have jurisdiction to hear anticipatory bail prayers. The special court, in charge of trial of criminal cases against MPs and MLAs, said it is a trial court and cannot hear an anticipatory bail application. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details It said Kumar may move the court of Barasat district sessions judge with his application. On September 13, the Calcutta High Court vacated its interim order granting the former Kolkata police commissioner protection from arrest in the Saradha chit-fund scam case. The high court also rejected Kumar’s prayer for quashing a CBI notice that sought his appearance for questioning in the case. Kumar, who is currently the West Bengal CID Additional Director General, was part of a Special Investigation Team set up by the state government to investigate the scam, before the Supreme Court handed over the case to CBI in 2014, along with other chit-fund cases.last_img read more

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16 Oct
2019

SpiderMan Comes To The Rescue For Earth Hour

first_imgIn a first of its kind partnership, Spider-Man will be the first Super Hero ambassador for Earth Hour, the global movement organized by WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature), with a message to inspire individuals to use their power to become Super Heroes for the planet.Andy Ridley, CEO and Co-Founder of Earth Hour, and Jeff Blake, Chairman, Worldwide Marketing and Distribution, Sony Pictures Entertainment, made the announcement in conjunction with the launch of Earth Hour Blue – a radical new digital crowdfunding and crowdsourcing platform for the planet, launched to engage people around the world and participants in the famous lights out event, which this year will be held on Saturday March 29, at 8:30pm.This year, Earth Hour and the hero of the highly anticipated motion picture The Amazing Spider-Man 2 – along with the film’s stars, Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Jamie Foxx and director Marc Webb – are throwing their support behind Earth Hour Blue, which aims to harness the power of the crowd to raise funds for on-the-ground environmental projects from across the world.“I’m proud Spider-Man is the first Super Hero ambassador for Earth Hour because he shows we can all be Super Heroes when we realize the power we all have,” says Andrew Garfield, who plays Spider-Man in the upcoming film. “Earth Hour is a movement that has created massive impact around the world, so imagine what we can do this year with Spider-Man by our side.”The crowdfunding section of the new platform will allow participants to help deliver energy efficient stoves to families in Madagascar, help communities in the Philippines build fiberglass boats to withstand climate impacts like Typhoon Haiyan and raise funds to expand and conserve the iconic Table Mountain National Park in South Africa, with many more projects to come.“Earth Hour gives you the power to inspire anyone, even if you’re just one person, and Earth Hour is much more than an hour. There are great projects from the crowd, for the planet, happening all over the world,” said Emma Stone.The Amazing Spider-Man 2 director Marc Webb is the first celebrity ambassador to announce the Earth Hour Blue project he is backing, which aims to provide better equipment for WWF Rangers protecting Indonesia’s endangered wildlife such as the Sumatran Tiger, Elephant, Rhino and Orangutan and their forest habitat.“Earth Hour is a movement full of Super Heroes – people harnessing the power of the crowd to inspire change for the good of the planet, imagine the possibilities when we come together and do more,” said Marc Webb.Earth Hour has grown to involve hundreds of millions of people from all walks of life across 7000 cities and towns and 154 countries and territories. Jamie Foxx who plays the villain Electro in the film said, “Earth Hour isn’t just about lights off; it’s about people across the world coming together throughout the year to join forces to improve the planet. Never underestimate your power, never underestimate what you can do.”Individuals can also use Earth Hour’s crowdsourcing platform for Earth Hour Blue, which will call for people to add their voice to some of the biggest environmental campaigns across the world; including an Instagram campaign for people to share their love of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, as part of WWF-Australia’s “Lights Out For The Reef” theme for Earth Hour 2014.Global participants in the movement will also be able to sign the Shark Saver’s “I’m FINished With FINS” pledge, which engages celebrities and public figures throughout Asia to help end shark finning in marine waters for the consumption of shark-fin soup.“The idea of Earth Hour has grown beyond anything we could have dreamed. This year with the help of Spider-Man by our side, we are taking the movement to the next stage. We hope that Spider-Man will empower individuals to be Super Heroes for the planet, and use their voice or their dollar to support projects or campaigns around the world. It’s about harnessing the power of the crowd. That’s what Earth Hour Blue is all about,” said Ridley.Sony Pictures Entertainment will join by contributing to a WWF-China and Earth Hour Blue project that provides efficient cookstoves to prevent deforestation in the habitat of the Giant Panda. Through its efforts, the studio will receive Gold Standard carbon offsets that render the entire physical production of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 as well as its publicity tour, carbon-neutral.Expanding on many sustainability efforts over the years, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 became the most eco-friendly tentpole production in the history of Columbia Pictures. These environmental efforts, on set and off, were supported at every level – from producers, studio executives, and cast and crew and began as soon as the film went into pre-production.“Spider-Man’s always been a very relatable Super Hero. Peter Parker is a hero to all people, and an inspiration, so it seems very fitting that he should join forces with Earth Hour to empower every single individual to help save the planet,” Blake added. “I’m also very proud of the fact that The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is entirely carbon-neutral. We made a commitment to be as eco-conscious as possible during production itself, when we took a special effort to think green and avoid waste; now, completing that process with Earth Hour Blue is a wonderful testament to what we can achieve when we all work together.”Earth Hour and its Super Hero ambassador Spider-Man remind us that “with great power comes great responsibility,” so get involved and use your power at earthhour.org.last_img read more

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13 Oct
2019

Trump defends tax plan proclaims economy set to rock

first_imgWASHINGTON – Closing in on the first major legislative achievement of his term, President Donald Trump on Saturday defended the Republican tax cut as a good deal for the middle class while boldly suggesting it could lead to explosive economic growth.The legislation, which the GOP aims to muscle through Congress next week, would lower taxes on the richest Americans. Benefits for most other taxpayers would be smaller, but Trump attempted to sell the bill as a “Christmas present” for middle-class Americans in part because it would trigger job growth.“It’ll be fantastic for the middle-income people and for jobs, most of all,” Trump told reporters on the White House lawn before travelling to Camp David for the weekend. “And I will say that because of what we’ve done with regulation and other things our economy is doing fantastically well, but it has another big step to go and it can’t take that step unless we do the tax bill.”No stranger to hyperbole, Trump also predicted the legislation would cause the economy to soar beyond its current 3 per cent rate of growth.“I think we could go to 4, 5 or even 6 per cent, ultimately,” the president said. “We are back. We are really going to start to rock.”Many economists believe that attaining consistent 4 or 5 per cent annual growth would be challenging. The nation last topped 5 per cent growth in 1984.The Republican plan is the widest-ranging reshaping of the tax code in three decades and is expected to add to the nation’s $20 trillion debt. The tax cuts are projected to add $1.46 trillion over a decade.Under the bill, today’s 35 per cent rate on corporations would fall to 21 per cent, the crown jewel of the measure for many Republicans. Trump and GOP leaders had set 20 per cent as their goal but added a point to free money for other tax cuts that won over wavering lawmakers in final talks.“This is happening. Tax reform under Republican control of Washington is happening,” House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin told rank-and-file members in a conference call Friday. “Most critics out there didn’t think it could happen. … And now we’re on the doorstep of something truly historic.”The bill would repeal an important part of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act — the requirement that all Americans have health insurance or face a penalty — as the GOP looks to unravel a law it failed to repeal and replace this past summer. It came together as Republicans cemented the needed support for the overhaul, securing endorsements from wavering senators.Marco Rubio of Florida relented in his high-profile opposition after negotiators expanded the tax credit that parents can claim for their children. He said he would vote for the measure next week.Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee, the only Republican to vote against the Senate version earlier this month, made the surprise announcement that he would back the legislation. Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has repeatedly warned that the nation’s growing debt is the most serious threat to national security.“I realize this is a bet on our country’s enterprising spirit, and that is a bet I am willing to make,” Corker said.The bill embodies a long-standing Republican philosophy that a substantial tax break for businesses will trigger economic growth and job creation for Americans in a trickle-down economy. Skeptical Democrats are likely to oppose the legislation unanimously.“Under this bill, the working class, middle class and upper middle class get skewered while the rich and wealthy corporations make out like bandits,” said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York. “It is just the opposite of what America needs, and Republicans will rue the day they pass this.”The bill would drop today’s 39.6 per cent top rate on individuals to 37 per cent. The standard deduction — used by around two-thirds of households — would be nearly doubled, to $24,000 for married couples.The $1,000-per-child tax deduction would grow to $2,000, with up to $1,400 available in IRS refunds for families who owe little or no taxes. Parents would have to provide children’s Social Security numbers to receive the child tax credit, a measure intended to deny the credit to people who are in the U.S. illegally.Those who itemize would lose some deductions. The deduction that millions use in connection with state and local income, property and sales taxes would be capped at $10,000. That’s especially important to residents of high-tax states such as New York, New Jersey and California. Deductions for medical expenses that lawmakers once considered eliminating would be retained.The bill would allow homeowners to deduct interest only on the first $750,000 of a new mortgage, down from the current limit of $1 million.People who inherit fortunes would get a big break. The bill would double the exemption, meaning the estate tax would apply only to the portion of an estate over $22 million for married couples.Members of a House-Senate conference committee signed the final version of the legislation Friday, sending it to the two chambers for final passage next week.Republicans hold a slim 52-48 majority in the Senate, and two ailing GOP senators missed votes this past week.John McCain of Arizona, who is 81, is at a Washington-area military hospital being treated for the side effects of brain cancer treatment, and 80-year-old Thad Cochran of Mississippi had a non-melanoma lesion removed from his nose earlier this week. GOP leaders are hopeful they will be available next week.___Associated Press writer Marcy Gordon contributed to this report.___Follow Lemire on Twitter at http://twitter.com/@JonLemire and Ohlemacher? at http://twitter.com/@stephenataplast_img read more

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13 Oct
2019

Alberta monitors makes contingency plans on road clearing in UK firm bankruptcy

first_imgEDMONTON – Alberta’s transportation minister says they are making contingency plans to clear and maintain roads as they monitor the financial fallout of a multinational United Kingdom construction company.Brian Mason says for now they believe the bankruptcy of Carillion PLC won’t affect the operations of its Canadian subsidiary.Carillion Canada maintains more than 40 per cent of Alberta’s highways.It also has operations in Ontario, including the renovations of Toronto’s Union Station.Mason said the province privatized road maintenance services under the previous Progressive Conservative government.He says the government is reviewing road maintenance, but said for now there’s no plan to move away from the privatized model.“We’ve certainly looked at the various options (but) I don’t think that that’s a direction that we’re going to be going right now,” Mason said Tuesday.A spokesman for Carillion Canada has said it’s business as usual in Canada despite the parent company’s collapse on Monday. Cody Johnstone said Carillion Canada is not in liquidation and its 6,000 employees in Canada continue to be paid, along with its subcontractors and suppliers.The British construction giant went into compulsory liquidation after weekend talks with creditors failed to get the short-term financing it needed to continue operating.last_img read more

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13 Oct
2019

Investors reacquaint themselves with turmoil in the markets

first_imgInvestors may be feeling a bit unsettled after a few days of market turmoil upset months of tranquility.A slide that started early last week led to a sharp dive in markets Friday and Monday. The fall on Monday alone represented the steepest drop in 6 1/2 years. That can rattle a few nerves. Things seemed to have stabilized Tuesday, easing fears of a global sell off.Market professionals say investors should stay calm — although they can’t guarantee markets will do the same.So what should you do? Here are a few answers to common questions:WHAT JUST HAPPENED?No one thing triggered this.The markets took a marked turn downward Friday after the monthly U.S. jobs report showed that wages surged in January, representing the sharpest year-over-year gain since the recession. That stoked concerns about higher inflation because as companies raise pay, they often raise prices and that cycle can speed inflation.The Federal Reserve is already expected to raise short-term interest rates this year with the economy growing. But inflation worries raise concerns that the Fed will increase rates at a quicker pace. Higher borrowing rates can be a challenge for corporations over time as they want to borrow money to grow and it drives investors to bonds rather than stocks.The selling continued Monday, in what most experts are saying is just an overdue correction. Some believe automated trading also played a role as the systems that buy and sell stocks may have been triggered. Trading was choppy Tuesday but the U.S. market mostly recovered after an early plunge.HOW BAD WAS IT?Not that bad, really.That big two-day drop only erases a few months of gains. Plus, market pros have noted that declines of 10 per cent or more are common during bull markets. And this has been the second-longest bull market on record.There hasn’t been a correction in two years, and by many measures stocks are awfully expensive.“Market corrections are normal, no matter how nerve-wracking they are at the time,” said Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at Bankrate.And after an extended period of market calm, it serves as a good reminder that stocks are volatile.WHAT SHOULD I DO?The answer can be one of the toughest parts of investing: Stay calm.“Just hang in there, maintain a long-term perspective and resist the urge for any knee-jerk reactions,” McBride said.Stocks go up and down — that is the nature of the market.People should be making their investments as part of a long-term plan, one that won’t be entirely hijacked by a few days of losses. And there may even be more volatility ahead — there’s no way to be sure.Check in with your financial planner or investment firm if you are feeling uneasy. It may be a good time to look at your portfolio and make sure it has a mix of assets that you are comfortable with. After the market’s big run-up, you may have more of your portfolio weighted toward stocks than you realize.Vanguard said that it counsels customers that changes to their portfolio should be made because their life circumstances, or their time horizon, have changed — not because of inflammatory headlines or “noise.”Some people may want to take advantage of the dip to buy. Others may want to revisit their strategy. But those who want to get out of the stock market altogether should take pause, said Ken Hevert, senior vice-president for retirement at Fidelity Investments.It’s easy to get out during down times but hard to get back in for a recovery. And drops of 5 per cent to 10 per cent are typically followed by a pretty rapid recovery period, he said, adding that current conditions are favourable for growth.last_img read more

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