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Czech Firms Launch Flying Bicycle

The world’s first flying bike has been unveiled in Prague. Launched by three Czech firms, the unmanned electric prototype can technically carry a passenger, though the battery life only lasts 5 minutes.

Here is live footage from


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Sherlock Holmes Through the Ages

sherlock-holmesSherlock Holmes, created by author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, may be the “most prolific screen character in the history of cinema,” according to Wikipedia. Actors from all fields have pursued roles in Sherlock Holmes productions, including film and television actors such as John Castle, stage actors like John Webb and radio actors like John and Val Gielgud.

The first known film featuring the eccentric investigator is a one-minute single reel film called Sherlock Holmes Baffled which was made in 1900. Five years later the Adventures of Sherlock Holmes; or, Held for Ransom vitagraph was released. Since then, literally thousands of adaptations have been produced, ranging from The Return of Sherlock Holmes (1929), Paramount on Parade (1930) and Sherlock Holmes (1932) to the 2009 version starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law.

Sherlock Holmes and his biographer Dr. John Watson have grown in popularity on television as well. In 1984 British television company Granada Television launched The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, featuring Jeremy Brett. Actor John Castle also appeared on the show as one of the schemers in The Solitary Cyclist. He was later featured in the film version of The Crucifer of Blood as well.

Today, two of the most popular shows on television are contemporary takes on Doyle’s stories, including BBC’s London-based Sherlock and CBS’s Elementary, which takes place in New York City.

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The Biography of Maurice Sendak

Maurice Sendak Google DoodleYesterday’s Google Doodle has left people of all ages buzzing with memories of Maurice Sendak’s stories. The children’s author passed away last year, and would have just turned 85. His most famous and beloved work is Where the Wild Things Are, though he wrote over 50 books, including In the Night Kitchen and Outside Over There. Later in his career he worked on the musical Really Rosie with Carole King as well.

Born in New York City, Sendak was a sickly child. He turned to drawing to pass the time, and, once he got to high school, began working at All-American Comics. He went on to work on window displays for F.A.O. Schwartz, one of the most famous toy stores in Brooklyn. In the late 1940s, Sendak met Ursula Nordstrom, the legendary children’s book editor, who helped him get his first position as a children’s books illustrator. His works include books by Ruth Krauss and Else Holmelund Minarik.


Sendak wrote and illustrated his first book in 1956, titled Kenny’s Window. His 1963 Where the Wild Things Are won a Caldecott Medal and changed the world of children’s books, captivating the public with its imaginative journey of a boy in a dark, moody world of monsters. Sendak explained that the protagonist, a child named Max, acted like a real child as opposed to a light, happy, idealized version of youth.

“In plain terms, a child is a complicated creature who can drive you crazy,” Sendak said. “There’s a cruelty to childhood, there’s an anger. And I did not want to reduce Mac to the trite image of the good little boy that you find in too many books.”

Maurice Sendak passed away in a Danbury, Connecticut hospital in 2012 after suffering a stroke. His incredible contributions to children’s literature and unparalleled illustrations have left lasting impressions throughout numerous generations.

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High School Teen Wins Google Doodle Competition

Google Doodle18-year-old Sabrina Brady was one of thousands to submit an entry in the ‘Doodle 4 Google’ contest, and on Thursday, her drawing was displayed on the search engine’s home page. The doodle, entitled “Coming Home,” depicted Brady’s best day ever- the reunion with her father after an 18-month deployment in Iraq ten years ago.

Ryan Germick, leader of the Google Doodle team, said:

“Sabrina’s doodle stood out in the crowd. “Her creative use of the Google letters to illustrate this heartfelt moment clearly resonated with voters across the country and all of us at Google.”

The competition instructed participants to illustrate their “best day ever” and submit them to a panel of judges. Contestants ranged from kindergarten to 12th grade. Google received over 130,000 entries.

“It was very shocking… It’s crazy,” Sabrina said of her win.

She explained that most girls have their “daddy moment” at around ten years old. “I kind of lost him in the middle of mine. I missed him,” she said.

Sabrina’s drawing was displayed on Google’s home page last week. She also received a $30,000 college scholarship for college and a Chromebook computer. Her high school was also awarded a $50,000 technology grant.

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10 Tips to Keep Cool This Summer

Summer EnergySummer nights and sunny days are wonderful, but the warm weather has already started taking its toll on our energy bills. Retail Energy Providers like IDT Energy know that when the temperature rises, there are several simple ways to minimize energy use both at home and in the office. recently compiled a list of ten tips that will help you conserve energy and keep your monthly costs at a minimum:

  • Replace your air conditioning unit if it’s outdated. Many older units are less effective, and use more electricity than necessary today.
  • Minimize your oven use. Instead, cook with a microwave, toaster oven or on an outdoor grill. This will keep your interiors cooler, reducing the strain on your air conditioner. Smaller appliances like microwaves also cook food faster while using less electricity.
  • Use an automated thermostat instead of setting the temperature manually. Keep your house warmer when no one is home.
  • Keep the hot sun out of your home by closing blinds or drapes. Open your windows at night in order to let the cooler air circulate, and close them before the midday heat.
  • Use a ceiling fan to give your air conditioning a rest. These will help circulate the cool air without using much energy.
  • Take shorter, cooler showers to conserve heating energy and minimize water use.
  • Replace your incandescent light bulbs with fluorescent ones. These use less energy, and last significantly longer.
  • Maintain your air conditioning unit by servicing it regularly. Make sure to keep the air filters clean, and have a professional check the system at least once a year.
  • Check the seals of your central air conditioning pipes. Have a professional examine the connections, vents and pipes to make sure the cool air is properly circulating inside your home.
  • Spend time outdoors! Take advantage of the clear weather to go for hikes and picnics, and keep cool by swimming at your local pool or visiting a nearby lake or beach.

By using energy responsibly, you can save money, protect our planet and keep your family comfortable and safe! Do you have any good summer savings tips to recommend?

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Yahoo Buys Tumblr for $1.1 Billion

Yahoo TumblrYahoo is buying Tumblr, the popular blogging service, for $1.1 billion in cash. The acquisition will aid Yahoo in its efforts to expand its reach to younger users and give the brand a much needed boost.

CEO Marissa Mayer has initiated many controversial changes within the company. This bold move to rejuvenate Yahoo by co-opting an online property with significant traffic but little revenue is not devoid of risk.

Mayer explained in an interview that by combining the sites, Yahoo will be able to attract additional advertisers and retain site visitors.

“Tumblr in terms of users and traffic is an immediate growth story for us,” she said.

Yahoo has stressed that it is sensitive to concerns that it may impact Tumblr in a negative way, and will make sure to avoid making the network less irreverent or more corporate.

“Per agreement and our promise not to screw it up, Tumblr will be independently operated as a separate business,” Yahoo stated.


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