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Romeo and Juliet -- robin, 05:32:04 02/07/16 Sun [1]

Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy written by William Shakespeare early in his career about two young star-crossed lovers whose deaths ultimately reconcile their feuding families. It was among Shakespeare's most popular plays during his lifetime and, along with Hamlet, is one of his most frequently performed plays. Today, the title characters are regarded as archetypal young lovers.

Romeo and Juliet belongs to a tradition of tragic romances stretching back to antiquity. The plot is based on an Italian tale translated into verse as The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet by Arthur Brooke in 1562, and retold in prose in Palace of Pleasure by William Painter in 1567. Shakespeare borrowed heavily from both, but expanded the plot by developing a number of supporting characters, particularly Mercutio and Paris. Believed to have been written between 1591 and 1595, the play was first published in a quarto version in 1597. The text of the first quarto version was of poor quality, however, and later editions corrected the text to conform more closely with Shakespeare's original.

Shakespeare's use of his poetic dramatic structure (especially effects such as switching between comedy and tragedy to heighten tension, his expansion of minor characters, and his use of sub-plots to embellish the story) has been praised as an early sign of his dramatic skill. The play ascribes different poetic forms to different characters, sometimes changing the form as the character develops. Romeo, for example, grows more adept at the sonnet over the course of the play.

Romeo and Juliet has been adapted numerous times for stage, film, musical and opera venues. During the English Restoration, it was revived and heavily revised by William Davenant. David Garrick's 18th-century version also modified several scenes, removing material then considered indecent, and Georg Benda's operatic adaptation omitted much of the action, and added a happy ending. Performances in the 19th century, including Charlotte Cushman's, restored the original text, and focused on greater realism. John Gielgud's 1935 version kept very close to Shakespeare's text, and used Elizabethan costumes and staging to enhance the drama. In the 20th and into the 21st century, the play has been adapted in versions as diverse as George Cukor's 1935 film Romeo and Juliet, Franco Zeffirelli's 1968 version Romeo and Juliet, and Baz Luhrmann's 1996 MTV-inspired Romeo + Juliet.


The play, set in Verona, begins with a street brawl between Montague and Capulet servants who, like their masters, are sworn enemies. Prince Escalus of Verona intervenes and declares that further breach of the peace will be punishable by death. Later, Count Paris talks to Capulet about marrying his daughter Juliet, but Capulet asks Paris to wait another two years and invites him to attend a planned Capulet ball. Lady Capulet and Juliet's nurse try to persuade Juliet to accept Paris's courtship.

Meanwhile, Benvolio talks with his cousin Romeo, Montague's son, about Romeo's recent depression. Benvolio discovers that it stems from unrequited infatuation for a girl named Rosaline, one of Capulet's nieces. Persuaded by Benvolio and Mercutio, Romeo attends the ball at the Capulet house in hopes of meeting Rosaline. However, Romeo instead meets and falls in love with Juliet. Juliet's cousin, Tybalt, is enraged at Romeo for sneaking into the ball, but is only stopped from killing Romeo by Juliet's father, who doesn't wish to shed blood in his house. After the ball, in what is now called the "balcony scene", Romeo sneaks into the Capulet orchard and overhears Juliet at her window vowing her love to him in spite of her family's hatred of the Montagues. Romeo makes himself known to her and they agree to be married. With the help of Friar Laurence, who hopes to reconcile the two families through their children's union, they are secretly married the next day.

Tybalt, meanwhile, still incensed that Romeo had sneaked into the Capulet ball, challenges him to a duel. Romeo, now considering Tybalt his kinsman, refuses to fight. Mercutio is offended by Tybalt's insolence, as well as Romeo's "vile submission,"[1] and accepts the duel on Romeo's behalf. Mercutio is fatally wounded when Romeo attempts to break up the fight. Grief-stricken and wracked with guilt, Romeo confronts and slays Tybalt.

Montague argues that Romeo has justly executed Tybalt for the murder of Mercutio. The Prince, now having lost a kinsman in the warring families' feud, exiles Romeo from Verona, under penalty of death if he ever returns. Romeo secretly spends the night in Juliet's chamber, where they consummate their marriage. Capulet, misinterpreting Juliet's grief, agrees to marry her to Count Paris and threatens to disown her when she refuses to become Paris's "joyful bride."[2] When she then pleads for the marriage to be delayed, her mother rejects her.

Juliet visits Friar Laurence for help, and he offers her a potion that will put her into a deathlike coma for "two and forty hours."[3] The Friar promises to send a messenger to inform Romeo of the plan, so that he can rejoin her when she awakens. On the night before the wedding, she takes the drug and, when discovered apparently dead, she is laid in the family crypt.

The messenger, however, does not reach Romeo and, instead, Romeo learns of Juliet's apparent death from his servant Balthasar. Heartbroken, Romeo buys poison from an apothecary and goes to the Capulet crypt. He encounters Paris who has come to mourn Juliet privately. Believing Romeo to be a vandal, Paris confronts him and, in the ensuing battle, Romeo kills Paris. Still believing Juliet to be dead, he drinks the poison. Juliet then awakens and, finding Romeo dead, stabs herself with his dagger. The feuding families and the Prince meet at the tomb to find all three dead. Friar Laurence recounts the story of the two "star-cross'd lovers". The families are reconciled by their children's deaths and agree to end their violent feud. The play ends with the Prince's elegy for the lovers: "For never was a story of more woe/Than this of Juliet and her Romeo."

Romeo and Juliet borrows from a tradition of tragic love stories dating back to antiquity. One of these is Pyramus and Thisbe, from Ovid's Metamorphoses, which contains parallels to Shakespeare's story: the lovers' parents despise each other, and Pyramus falsely believes his lover Thisbe is dead.[5] The Ephesiaca of Xenophon of Ephesus, written in the 3rd century, also contains several similarities to the play, including the separation of the lovers, and a potion that induces a deathlike sleep.[6]

One of the earliest references to the names Montague and Capulet is from Dante's Divine Comedy, who mentions the Montecchi (Montagues) and the Cappelletti (Capulets) in canto six of Purgatorio:[7]

Come and see, you who are negligent,
Montagues and Capulets, Monaldi and Filippeschi
One lot already grieving, the other in fear.[8]

However, the reference is part of a polemic against the moral decay of Florence, Lombardy and the Italian Peninsula as a whole; Dante, through his characters, chastises German King Albert I for neglecting his responsibilities towards Italy ("you who are negligent"), and successive popes for their encroachment from purely spiritual affairs, thus leading to a climate of incessant bickering and warfare between rival political parties in Lombardy. History records the name of the family Montague as being lent to such a political party in Verona, but that of the Capulets as from a Cremonese family, both of whom play out their conflict in Lombardy as a whole rather than within the confines of Verona.[9] Allied to rival political factions, the parties are grieving ("One lot already grieving") because their endless warfare has led to the destruction of both parties,[9] rather than a grief from the loss of their ill-fated offspring as the play sets forth, which appears to be a solely poetic creation within this context.

The earliest known version of the Romeo and Juliet tale akin to Shakespeare's play is the story of Mariotto and Gianozza by Masuccio Salernitano, in the 33rd novel of his Il Novellino published in 1476.[10] Salernitano sets the story in Siena and insists its events took place in his own lifetime. His version of the story includes the secret marriage, the colluding friar, the fray where a prominent citizen is killed, Mariotto's exile, Gianozza's forced marriage, the potion plot, and the crucial message that goes astray. In this version, Mariotto is caught and beheaded and Gianozza dies of grief.[11]
Modern form

Luigi da Porto (1485–1529) adapted the story as Giulietta e Romeo[12] and included it in his Historia novellamente ritrovata di due Nobili Amanti, written in 1524 and published posthumously in 1531 in Venice.[13][14] Da Porto drew on Pyramus and Thisbe, Boccacio's Decameron, and Salernitano's Mariotto e Ganozza, but it is likely that his story is also autobiographical: present as a soldier at a ball on 26 February 1511 at a residence of the Savorgnan clan in Udine, following a peace ceremony with the opposite Strumieri, he fell in love with Lucina, the daughter of the house, but relationships of their mentors prevented advances. The next morning, the Savorgnans led an attack on the city, and many members of the Strumieri were murdered. When years later, half-paralyzed from a battle-wound, he wrote Giulietta e Romeo in Montorso Vicentino (from where he could see the "castles" of Verona), he dedicated the novella to bellisima e leggiadra madonna Lucina Savorgnan.[15][12]

Da Porto gave Romeo and Juliet most of its modern form, including the names of the lovers, the rival families of Montecchi and Capuleti, and the location in Verona.[10] He also introduced the characters and names of Mercutio (Marcuccio Guertio), Tybalt (Tebaldo Cappelleti), Count Paris (conti (Paride) di Lodrone) and Friar Laurence (frate Lorenzo). Da Porto presented his tale as historically true and claimed it took place a century earlier than Salernitano had it, in the days Verona was ruled by Bartolomeo II della Scala (anglicized as Prince Escalus). In da Porto's version Romeo takes poison and Giulietta stabs herself with his dagger.[16]

In 1554, Matteo Bandello published the second volume of his Novelle, which included his version of Giuletta e Romeo.[14] Bandello emphasises Romeo's initial depression and the feud between the families, and introduces the Nurse and Benvolio. Bandello's story was translated into French by Pierre Boaistuau in 1559 in the first volume of his Histories Tragiques. Boaistuau adds much moralising and sentiment, and the characters indulge in rhetorical outbursts.[17]

In his 1562 narrative poem The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet, Arthur Brooke translated Boaistuau faithfully, but adjusted it to reflect parts of Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde.[18] There was a trend among writers and playwrights to publish works based on Italian novelles—Italian tales were very popular among theatre-goers—and Shakespeare may well have been familiar with William Painter's 1567 collection of Italian tales titled Palace of Pleasure.[19] This collection included a version in prose of the Romeo and Juliet story named "The goodly History of the true and constant love of Romeo and Juliett". Shakespeare took advantage of this popularity: The Merchant of Venice, Much Ado About Nothing, All's Well That Ends Well, Measure for Measure, and Romeo and Juliet are all from Italian novelle. Romeo and Juliet is a dramatisation of Brooke's translation, and Shakespeare follows the poem closely, but adds extra detail to both major and minor characters (in particular the Nurse and Mercutio).[20][21][22]

Christopher Marlowe's Hero and Leander and Dido, Queen of Carthage, both similar stories written in Shakespeare's day, are thought to be less of a direct influence, although they may have helped create an atmosphere in which tragic love stories could thrive.[18]

Date and text
It is unknown when exactly Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet. Juliet's nurse refers to an earthquake she says occurred 11 years ago.[23] This may refer to the Dover Straits earthquake of 1580, which would date that particular line to 1591. Other earthquakes—both in England and in Verona—have been proposed in support of the different dates.[24] But the play's stylistic similarities with A Midsummer Night's Dream and other plays conventionally dated around 1594–95, place its composition sometime between 1591 and 1595.[25] One conjecture is that Shakespeare may have begun a draft in 1591, which he completed in 1595.[26]

Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet was published in two quarto editions prior to the publication of the First Folio of 1623. These are referred to as Q1 and Q2. The first printed edition, Q1, appeared in early 1597, printed by John Danter. Because its text contains numerous differences from the later editions, it is labelled a 'bad quarto'; the 20th-century editor T. J. B. Spencer described it as "a detestable text, probably a reconstruction of the play from the imperfect memories of one or two of the actors", suggesting that it had been pirated for publication.[27] An alternative explanation for Q1's shortcomings is that the play (like many others of the time) may have been heavily edited before performance by the playing company.[28] In any event, its appearance in early 1597 makes 1596 the latest possible date for the play's composition.[24]

The superior Q2 called the play The Most Excellent and Lamentable Tragedie of Romeo and Juliet. It was printed in 1599 by Thomas Creede and published by Cuthbert Burby. Q2 is about 800 lines longer than Q1.[28] Its title page describes it as "Newly corrected, augmented and amended". Scholars believe that Q2 was based on Shakespeare's pre-performance draft (called his foul papers), since there are textual oddities such as variable tags for characters and "false starts" for speeches that were presumably struck through by the author but erroneously preserved by the typesetter. It is a much more complete and reliable text, and was reprinted in 1609 (Q3), 1622 (Q4) and 1637 (Q5).[27] In effect, all later Quartos and Folios of Romeo and Juliet are based on Q2, as are all modern editions since editors believe that any deviations from Q2 in the later editions (whether good or bad) are likely to arise from editors or compositors, not from Shakespeare.

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Yusuf and Zulaikha -- robin, 05:28:40 02/07/16 Sun [1]

Yusuf and Zulaikha (يوسف زلیخا) is the Quranic verse of Yusuf (Joseph) and Zulaikha (the person known in the Bible as Potiphar's wife and whose name is not given there). It has been told and retold countless times in many languages spoken by Muslims, especially Persian and Urdu. Its most famous version was written in Persian by Jami (1414-1492), in his Haft Awrang ("Seven Thrones"). The story has by then many elaborations, and is capable of a Sufi interpretation, where Zulaikha's lust for Yusuf represents the soul's longing for God.

Other versions of the story

Other writers to have retold the story include: Mahmud Gami (Kashmiri). It is a standard tale used in Punjabi Qisse.

There exists as well a long poem on the subject, titled as Yusuf and Zalikha, which used to be attributed to Ferdowsi, the great Persian poet of the tenth and eleventh century, however, the scholars have rejected this book based on its low quality and the time line of Ferdowsi's life.[1]
Yousuf and Zulaikha in Asia

As in many other Muslim countries, the narrative of the epic love of Yousuf and Zulaikha was covered in classic literary works of East Bengal (modern day Bangladesh): in the 14th century A.D. (during the reign of Sultan Ghiyasuddin Azam Shah), Shah Muhammad Sagir wrote in Bengali a version of Yousuf and Zulaikha which is considered one of the greatest literary works of medieval "golden era" of Bengali literature.

Pakistan's television channel A-Plus Entertainment produced serial, Mera Naam Yousuf Hai (My name is Yusuf) in 2015 loosely based on Haft Awrang by Jami.

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Khosrow and Shirin -- robin, 05:26:00 02/07/16 Sun [1]

"Khosrow and Shirin", also spelled Khosrau and Shirin, Chosroes and Shirin, Husraw and Shireen and Khosru and Shirin (Persian: خسرو و شیرین‎‎), is the title of a famous Persian tragic romance by the Persian poet Nizami Ganjavi (1141–1209) who also wrote Layla and Majnun. It tells a highly elaborated fictional version of the story of the love of the Sasanian king Khosrow II for the Armenian princess Shirin, who becomes his queen.[1][2][3][4] The essential narrative is a love story of Persian origin which was already well-known from the great epico-historical poem the Shahnameh and other Persian writers and popular tales, and other works have the same title.[5]

Variants of the story were also told under the titles "Shirin and Farhad" or "Farhad and Shirin".


Nezami's version begins with an account of Khosrow's birth and his education. This is followed by an account of Khosrow's feast in a farmer's house; for which Khosrow is severely chastised by his father. Khosrow asks forgiveness and repents his offence. Hormizd IV, who is now pleased with his son, forgives him. That very night, Khosrow sees his grandfather Anushirvan in a dream and Anushirvan gives him glad tidings of a wife named Shirin, a steed named Shabdiz, a musician named Barbad, and a great kingdom, that is Persia.

Shapur, Khosrow's close friend and a painter, tells Khosrow of the Armenian queen Mahin Banu and her niece Shirin. Hearing Shapur's descriptions of Shirin's flawless features, the young prince falls in love with Shirin, the Armenian princess. Shapur travels to Armenia to look for Shirin. Shapur finds Shirin and shows the image of Khosrow to Shirin. Shirin falls in love with Khosrow and escapes from Armenia to Khosrow's capital Mada'in; but meanwhile, Khosrow also flees from his father's anger and sets out for Armenia in search of Shirin.

On the way, he finds Shirin unclothed bathing and washing her flowing hair; Shirin also sees him; but since Khosrow was traveling in peasant clothes, they do not recognize one another. Khosrow arrives in Azerbaijan and is welcomed by Shamira the queen of Armenia - yet he finds out that Shirin is in Mada'in. Again, Shapur is sent to bring Shirin. When Shirin reached Armenia again, Khosrow – because of his father's death- has to return to Mada'in. The two lovers keep going to opposite places till finally Khosrow is overthrown by a general named Bahrām Chobin and flees to Armenia.

In Armenia, Khosrow finally meets Shirin and is welcomed by her. Shirin, however, does not agree to marry Khosrow; unless Khosrow first claims his country back from Bahram Choobin. Thus, Khosrow leaves Shirin in Armenia and goes to Constantinople. The Caesar agrees to assist him against Bahram Choobin conditioned that he married his daughter Maryam. Khosrow is also forced to promise not to marry as long as Maryam is alive. Khosrow succeeds in defeating his enemy and reclaims his throne. Maryam, due to her jealousy, keeps Khosrow away from Shirin.

Meanwhile, a sculptor named Farhad, falls in love with Shirin and becomes Khosrow's love-rival. Khosrow cannot abide Farhad, so he sends him on an exile to Behistun mountain with the impossible task of carving stairs out of the cliff rocks. Farhad begins his task hoping that Khosrow will allow him marry Shirin. Yet, Khosrow sends a messenger to Farhad and gives him false news of Shirin's death. Hearing this false news, Farhad throws himself from the mountaintop and dies. Khosrow writes a letter to Shirin, expressing his regret for Farhad's death. Soon after this incident, Maryam also dies. According to Ferdowsi's version, it was Shirin who secretly poisoned Maryam. Shirin replies Khosrow's letter with another satirical letter of condolences.

Khosrow, before proposing marriage to Shirin, tries to have intimacy with another woman named Shekar in Isfahan; which further delays the lovers' union. Finally, Khosrow goes to Shirin's castle to see her. Shirin, seeing that Khosrow is drunk, does not let him in the castle. She particularly reproaches Khosrow for his intimacy with Shekar. Khosrow, sad and rejected, returns to his palace.

Shirin eventually consents to marry Khosrow after several romantic and heroic episodes. Yet, Shiroyeh, Khosrow's son from his wife Maryam, is also in love with Shirin. Shiroy finally murders his father Khosrow and sends a messenger to Shirin conveying that after one week, she would have to marry him. Shirin, in order to avoid marrying Shiroy, kills herself. Khosrow and Shirin were buried together in one grave.

Popularity in Persian literature
There are many references to the legend throughout the poetry of other Kurdish poets including Farrokhi, Qatran, Mas'ud-e Sa'd-e Salman, Othman Mokhtari, Naser Khusraw, Anwari and Sanai. Nizam al-Mulk mentioned that the legend was a popular story in his era.[6]
Nizami's version

Although the story was known before Nizami, it was brought to its greatest romantic height by him. Unlike the Shahnameh, which focuses on the history, kingship and battles of Khosrow, Nizami decided to focus on the romantic aspect of the story.

When the Seljuq Sultan Arsalan Shah requested a love epic from the poet without specifying the subject further, Nizami picked on the story of lovers Khosrow and Shirin, a theme set in his own region and based on at least partly historical facts, through an aura of legend already surrounded it.

Nizami Ganjavi (1141–1209) himself considered it the sweetest story in the world:
“ The tale of Khosraw and Shirin is well known

And by Truth, there is no sweeter story than it.

It is believed to be one of the better works of Nizami and his first wife Afaq died after it was completed. Many versions of Nizami's work have been retold. The story has a constant forward drive with exposition, challenge, mystery, crisis, climax, resolution, and finally, catastrophe.

Besides Ferdowsi, Nizami's poem was influenced by Asad Gorgani and his "Vis and Rāmin".[7] which is of the same meter and has similar scenes. Nizami's concern with astrology also has a precedent in the elaborate astrological description of the night sky in Vis and Ramin. Nizami had a paramount influence on the romantic tradition, and Gorgani can be said to have initiated much of the distinctive rhetoric and poetic atmosphere of this tradition, with the absence of the Sufi influences, which are seen in Nizami's epic poetry.

According to the Encyclopædia Iranica: "The influence of the legend of Farhad is not limited to literature, but permeates the whole of Persian culture, including folklore and the fine arts. Farhad's helve supposedly grew into a tree with medicinal qualities, and there are popular laments for Farhad, especially among the Kurds (Mokri)." [6]

In 2011, the Iranian government's censors refused a publishing house permission to reprint the centuries-old classic poem that had been a much-loved component of Persian literature for 831 years. While the Iranian Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance offered no immediate official explanation for refusing to permit the firm to publish their eighth edition of the classic, the Islamic government's concerns reportedly centered on the "indecent" act of the heroine, Shirin, in embracing her husband.[8]

Orhan Pamuk's novel, My Name Is Red (1998), has a plot line between two characters, Shekure and Black, which echoes the Khosrow and Shirin story, which is also retold in the book. The novel uses the Turkish spelling of Khosrow's name, Hüsrev.
Other versions

The tale has been retold by countless Sufi poets and writers in areas which were previously part of the Persian Empire or had Persian influences, such as the northern parts of the neighboring Indian Sub Continent. In Europe, the story was told by Hungarian novelist Mór Jókai. However, the story is usually told under the name of "Shirin Farhad". It is a standard tale used in Punjabi Qisse. The story has been filmed five times: 1926,[9] 1931,[10] 1945,[11] 1956 starring Madhubala and Pradeep Kumar[12] and 1975.[13]

The tale was used as the inspiration for a 2008 Iranian film, Shirin, made by Abbas Kiarostami. In this formally unusual film, the story is told via the reactions of an audience of Iranian women as they sit watching the film in a cinema. The viewer has to divine the story by only ever seeing these emoting faces and listening to the film's soundtrack.

The song was also referenced in the Jonathan Richman song "Shirin and Farhad"

The tale was also an inspiration for the 2012 Bollywood romantic comedy Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi.

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Layla and Majnun -- robin, 05:23:21 02/07/16 Sun [1]

Layla and Majnun (English: Possessed by madness for Layla; Persian: لیلی و مجنون عامری‎‎ (Leyli o Majnun); Arabic: مجنون لیلی‎ (Majnun Layla)) is a love story that originated as poem in ancient Persia,[1] later was adopted by the Persian poet Nizami Ganjavi who also wrote "Khosrow and Shirin". It is the third of his five long narrative poems, Khamsa (the Quintet).

Qays and Layla fall in love with each other when they are young, but when they grow up Layla’s father doesn't allow them to be together. Qays becomes obsessed with her, and the community gives him the epithet Majnun (مجنون, lit. "possessed"), the same epithet given to the semi-historical character Qays ibn al-Mulawwah of the Banu 'Amir tribe. Long before Nizami, the legend circulated in anecdotal forms in Arabic akhbar. The early anecdotes and oral reports about Majnun are documented in Kitab al-Aghani and Ibn Qutaybah's al-Shi'r wal-Shu'ara'. The anecdotes are mostly very short, only loosely connected, and show little or no plot development.[1]

Many imitations have been contrived of Nizami's work, several of which are original literary works in their own right, including Amir Khusrow Dehlavi's Majnun o Leyli (completed in 1299), and Jami's version, completed in 1484, amounts to 3,860 couplets. Other notable reworkings are by Maktabi Shirazi, Hatefi (d. 1520), and Fuzûlî (d.1556), which became popular in Ottoman Turkey and India. Sir William Jones published Hatefi's romance in Calcutta in 1788. The popularity of the romance following Nizami's version is also evident from the references to it in lyrical poetry and mystical mathnavis—before the appearance of Nizami's romance, there are just some allusions to Layla and Majnun in divans. The number and variety of anecdotes about the lovers also increased considerably from the twelfth century onwards. Mystics contrived many stories about Majnun to illustrate technical mystical concepts such as fanaa (annihilation), divānagi (love-madness), self-sacrifice, etc. Nizami's work has been translated into many languages.[1]


Qays fell in love with Layla. He soon began composing poems about his love for her, mentioning her name often. His unselfconscious efforts to woo the girl caused some locals to call him "Majnun" (madman). When he asked for her hand in marriage, her father refused because it would be a scandal for Layla to marry someone considered mentally unbalanced. Soon after, Layla was married to another noble and rich merchant belonging to the Thaqif tribe in Ta'if. He was described as a handsome white man with reddish cheeks whose name was Ward Althaqafi. The Arabs called him Ward, meaning "rose" in Arabic.

When Majnun heard of her marriage, he fled the tribal camp and began wandering the surrounding desert. His family eventually gave up hope for his return and left food for him in the wilderness. He could sometimes be seen reciting poetry to himself or writing in the sand with a stick.

Layla is generally depicted as having moved to a place in Northern Arabia with her husband, where she became ill and eventually died. In some versions, Layla dies of heartbreak from not being able to see her would-be lover. Majnun was later found dead in the wilderness in 688 AD, near Layla’s grave. He had carved three verses of poetry on a rock near the grave, which are the last three verses attributed to him.

Many other minor incidents happened between his madness and his death. Most of his recorded poetry was composed before his descent into madness.
“ I pass by these walls, the walls of Layla
And I kiss this wall and that wall
It’s not Love of the walls that has enraptured my heart
But of the One who dwells within them ”

It is a tragic story of undying love much like the later Romeo and Juliet. This type of love is known as "virgin love" because the lovers never marry or consummate their passion. Other famous virgin love stories set in Arabia are the stories of Qays and Lubna, Kuthair and Azza, Marwa and Al Majnoun Al Faransi, Antara and Abla, and Irfan and Zoobi. This literary motif is common throughout the world, notably in the Muslim literature of South Asia, such as Urdu ghazals.

Persian adaptation and Persian literature
The story of Layla and Majnun was known in Persian at early as the 9th century. Two well known Persian poets, Rudaki and Baba Taher, both mention the lovers.[2][3]

Although the story was somewhat popular in Persian literature in the 12th century, it was the Persian masterpiece of Nizami Ganjavi that popularized it dramatically in Persian literature.[4] Nizami collected both secular and mystical sources about Majnun and portrayed a vivid picture of the famous lovers.[4] Subsequently, many other Persian poets imitated him and wrote their own versions of the romance.[4] Nizami drew influence from Udhrite love poetry, which is characterized by erotic abandon and attraction to the beloved, often by means of an unfulfillable longing.[5] Other influences include older Persian epics, such as Vāmiq u 'Adhrā, written in the 11th century, which covers a similar topic of a virgin and her passionate lover; the latter having to go through many trials to be with his love.[6]

In his adaptation, the young lovers become acquainted at school and fell desperately in love. However, they could not see each other due to a family feud, and Layla's family arranged for her to marry another man.[7] According to Dr. Rudolf Gelpke, "Many later poets have imitated Nizami's work, even if they could not equal and certainly not surpass it; Persians, Turks, Indians, to name only the most important ones. The Persian scholar Hekmat has listed no less than forty Persians and thirteen Turkish versions of Layli and Majnun."[8] According to Vahid Dastgerdi, "If one would search all existing libraries, one would probably find more than 1000 versions of Layli and Majnun."

In his statistical survey of famous Persian romances, Ḥasan Ḏulfaqāri enumerates 59 ‘imitations’ (naẓiras) of Layla and Majnun as the most popular romance in the Iranian world, followed by 51 versions of Ḵosrow o Širin, 22 variants of Yusuf o Zuleikha and 16 versions of Vāmiq u ʿAḏhrā

Azerbaijani adaptation and Azerbaijani literature
The story of Layla and Majnun passed into Azerbaijani literature. The Azerbaijani language adaptation of the story, Dâstân-ı Leylî vü Mecnûn (داستان ليلى و مجنون; "The Epic of Layla and Majnun") was written in the 16th century by Fuzûlî and Hagiri Tabrizi. Fuzûlî's version was borrowed by the renowned Azerbaijani composer Uzeyir Hajibeyov, who used the material to create what became the Middle East's first opera. It premiered in Baku on 25 January 1908. The story had previously been brought to the stage in the late 19th century, when Ahmed Shawqi wrote a poetic play about the tragedy, now considered one of the best in modern Arab poetry. Majnun lines from the play are sometimes confused with his actual poems.

A scene of the poem is depicted on the reverse of the Azerbaijani 100 and 50 manat commemorative coins minted in 1996 for the 500th anniversary of Fuzûlî's life and activities.[9]
Other influences

The enduring popularity of the legend has influenced Middle Eastern literature, especially Sufi writers, in whose literature the name Layla refers to their concept of the Beloved. The original story is featured in Bahá'u'lláh's mystical writings, the Seven Valleys. In Arabic language, Layla name means "night," and is thought to mean "one who works by night." This is an apparent allusion to the fact that the romance of the star-crossed lovers was hidden and kept secret. In the Arabic language, the word Majnun means "a crazy person." In addition to this creative use of language, the tale has also made at least one linguistic contribution, inspiring a Turkish colloquialism: to "feel like Mecnun" is to feel completely possessed, as might be expected of a person who is literally madly in love.

This epic poem was translated into English by Isaac D'Israeli in the early 19th century allowing a wider audience to appreciate it.

Layla has also been mentioned in many works by Aleister Crowley in many of his religious texts, perhaps most notably, in The Book of Lies.

In India, it is believed that Layla and Majnun found refuge in a village in Rajasthan before they died. The graves of Layla and Majnun are believed to be located in the Bijnore village near Anupgarh in the Sriganganagar district. According to rural legend there, Layla and Majnun escaped to these parts and died there. Hundreds of newlyweds and lovers from India and Pakistan, despite there being no facilities for an overnight stay, attend the two-day fair in June.

Another variation on the tale tells of Layla and Majnun meeting in school. Majnun fell in love with Layla and was captivated by her. The school master would beat Majnun for paying attention to Layla instead of his school work. However, upon some sort of magic, whenever Majnun was beaten, Layla would bleed for his wounds. The families learnt of this strange magic and began to feud, preventing Layla and Majnun from seeing each other. They meet again later in their youth and Majnun wishes to marry Layla. Layla's brother, Tabrez, would not let her shame the family name by marrying Majnun. Tabrez and Majnun quarreled and, stricken with madness over Layla, Majnun murdered Tabrez. Word reached the village and Majnun was arrested. He was sentenced to be stoned to death by the villagers. Layla could not bear it and agreed to marry another man if Majnun would be kept safe from harm in exile. Her terms were accepted and Layla got married, but her heart still longed for Majnun. Hearing this, Layla's husband rode with his men into the desert to find Majnun. Upon finding him, Layla's husband challenged Majnun to the death. The instant her husband's sword pierced Majnun's heart, Layla collapsed in her home. Layla and Majnun were buried next to each other as her husband and their fathers prayed to their afterlife. Myth has it that Layla and Majnun met again in heaven, where they loved forever.
Popular culture

The tale and the name "Layla" served as Eric Clapton's inspiration for the title of Derek and the Dominos' famous album Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs and its title track in 1971. The song "I Am Yours" is a direct quote from a passage in Layla and Majnun.
The tale served as the inspiration for Halim El-Dabh's early electronic tape music composition called Leiyla and the Poet in 1959.
The tale of Layla and Majnun has been the subject of various films produced by the Indian film industry beginning in the 1920s. A list may be found here: http://www.thehindu.com/features/cinema/article419176.ece. One, Laila Majnu, was produced in 1976. In 2007, the story was enacted as both a framing story and as a dance-within-a-movie in the film Aaja Nachle. Also, in pre-independence India, the first Pashto-language film was an adaptation of this story.
The term Layla-Majnun is often used for lovers, also Majnun is commonly used to address a person madly in love.
Orhan Pamuk makes frequent reference to Leyla and Majnun in his novels, The Museum of Innocence and My Name is Red.
One of the panels in the Alisher Navoi metro station in Tashkent (Uzbekistan) and Nizami Gəncəvi metro station in Baku (Azerbaijan) represents the epic on blue green tiles.
In the book A Thousand Splendid Suns by Afghan author Khaled Hosseini, Rasheed often refers to Laila and Tariq as Layla and Majnun.
South African Author Achmat Dangor of mixed Indian descent makes reference to Leyla and Majnun in his novels, "Waiting for Leila" and "Kafka's Curse"
On Gaia Online, a recent monthly collectible released an item under the names Majnun and Layla loosely based on the story.

Layla and Majnun — poem of Alisher Navoi.
Layla and Majnun — poem of Jami.
Layla and Majnun — poem of Nizami Ganjavi.
Layla and Majnun — poem of Fuzûlî.
Layla and Majnun — poem of Hagiri Tabrizi.
Layla and Majnun — drama in verse of Mirza Hadi Ruswa.
Layla and Majnun — novel of Necati.
Layla and Majnun — the first Muslim and the Azerbaijani opera of Uzeyir Hajibeyov.
Layla and Majnun — symphonic poem of Gara Garayev (1947)
Symphony № 24 ("Majnun"), Op. 273 (1973), for tenor solo, trumpet, choir and strings – Alan Hovhaness.
Layla and Majnun — ballet, staged by Kasyan Goleizovsky (1964) © on music SA Balasanyan.
The Song of Majnun — opera of Bright Sheng (1992)
Laila Majnu — Pakistani film in 1974.
Laila Majnu — Indian Hindi silent film in 1922.
Laila Majnu — Indian Hindi silent film in 1927.
Laila Majnu — Indian Hindi film in 1931.
Laila Majnu — Indian Hindi film in 1931.
Layla and Majnun — Iranian film in 1936.
Laila Majnu — Indian Telugu film in 1949.
Layla and Majnun — Tajik Soviet film-ballet of 1960.
Layla and Majnun — Soviet Azerbaijani film of 1961.
Laila Majnu — Indian Malayalam film in 1962.
Laila Majnu — Indian Hindi film in 1976.
Leyla ile Mecnun — Music album of Orhan Gencebay in 1981.
Leyla ile Mecnun — Turkish drama film in 1982.
Love And God (1986) — Indian Hindi film directed by K. Asif
Layla and Majnun — Azerbaijani film-opera of 1996.
Aaja Nachle— a 2007 Indian film has a 15 minute musical play on life of Layla and Majnun.
Majnoon Layla a 2010 song by Syrian-American hip-hop artist and peace activist Omar Offendum.
Leyla ile Mecnun — is a Turkish television comedy series in 2011.
Double Barrel — is a Malayalam Movie in 2015.
Tamasha - is a Hindi movie of 2015. A musical story in this movie has parts of laila majnu duet.

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Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi -- robin, 05:19:54 02/07/16 Sun [1]

Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi is a 2012 Bollywood romantic comedy film directed by Bela Bhansali Sehgal, starring Farah Khan, Boman Irani, Kavin Dave, Shammi, Kurush Deboo and Daisy Irani.


Farhad Pastakia (Boman Irani) has a dream job as a bra-and-panty salesman. Except that he is a 45-year-old Parsi bachelor still living with his overbearing mother and grandmother. But it’s not like he’s stopped trying. Desperate to get him married, Farhad’s mother drags him to see women and even to embarrassing Parsi matrimony services.

In the midst of all the daily humdrum, Farhad meets the woman of his dreams: Shirin Fugawala (Farah Khan), who drops by his store. Shirin, who works at the Parsi Trust, hits it off with Farhad from the start. Everything seems to be perfect and Farhad gets ready to introduce Shirin to his mother. But mummy becomes the villain in their story when she discovers that Shirin is the devious Parsi Trust Secretary who got the illegal water tank in their home demolished. The water tank being the 'aakhri nishaani' of Farhad’s late father doesn’t help matters.

The ups and downs in Shirin-Farhad’s relationship and how the two try to make it work is the rest of the journey.

The proposal scene in the movie where Shrin accidentally swallows a diamond ring was plagiarized from an episode of 'Two and a Half Men' where Chelsie swallows a diamond ring that Charlie Harper had put in her champagne glass.

The plot of the movie is similar to an old Hollywood classic " Marty's"

Boman Irani as Farhad Pastakia
Farah Khan as Shirin Fuggawala
Kavin Dave
Kurush Deboo as Sorab (Noisy Quarrelsome Neighbour of Shirin)
Daisy Irani as Nargis Pastakia
Dinyar Contractor
Nauheed Cyrusi as Anahita
Mahabanoo Modi Kotwal
Beroze as Farhad's aunt

Critical reception

Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi received positive to mixed critical reactions. Sukanya Verma of Rediff gave the movie 3.5/5, commenting that "Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi certainly makes for a welcome break from farcical exaggerations. What sets this delightful love story apart is that it is woven around two 40-plus Parsis, who neither face the hurdle of age nor community."[3] Rajeev Masand of CNN-IBN gave the movie 3/5, concluding that "Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi is a charming film made with heart. Give it a chance, you won’t be disappointed."[4] Shomini Sen of Zee News gave the movie 3/5, stating that "Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi makes you smile and laugh with each of its characters and their crazy, confusing ways. It will remind you of the bygone era when things were simpler."[5] Aniruddha Guha of DNA India gave the movie 3/5, saying that "Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi demands little of you and delivers enough for you to not grudge spending time and money on it."[6] Aakanksha Naval-Shetye of DNA India gave the movie 3/5, stating that "Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi is too sweet and too simple, but makes for a fun watch."[7] Madhureeta Mukherjee of The Times of India gave the movie 3/5, concluding that "Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi is no epic love tale, but it's worth a watch for those who like their cinema as buttered as their bun maska."[8] Saibal Chatterjee of NDTV gave the movie 2.5/5, commenting that "Shirin Farhad Ki To Nikal Padi is warm-hearted and generally watchable without being exhilarating."[9] Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama gave the movie 3.5/5, saying that "SHIRIN FARHAD KI TOH NIKAL PADI is a simple, unfussy and heartfelt movie that hits the right notes." Salman Khan praised the movie and told at least once it is watchable.[10]
Box office

Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi had a good opening at the box office at 20%,[11][12] collecting ₹16.0 million (US$240,000) in its first day.[13] The movie collected ₹60 million (US$880,000) in its first weekend, collecting ₹19.0 million (US$280,000) in its second day and ₹25.0 million (US$370,000) in its third day.[14] The film collected ₹94.8 million (US$1.4 million) nett in week one.

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Ibn Sirin -- robin, 05:17:16 02/07/16 Sun [1]

Muhammad Ibn Sirin (Arabic محمد بن سيرين) (born in Basra) was a Muslim interpreter of dreams who lived in the 8th century. He was a contemporary of Anas ibn Malik.

According to Yehia Gouda's most authoritative encyclopedic reference book on Muslim oneiromancy Dreams and Their Meanings (ISBN 0-533-08877-1, published in 1991), hazrat Abu Bakr Muhammad Ibn Sirin Al-Ansari (R.A.) (33-110 AH; AD 653–728), was, indeed, born in Basra, as mentioned, in AD 653, i.e., the 33rd year after Muhammad's leaving from Makkah to the then Yathreb. His birth came two years before the end of the rule of Caliph Uthman ibn Affan.

Muhammad's father (the name Abu Bakr was seldom used) was one of the many captives taken by Khalid ibn Al-Walid when he embarked on his campaign to conquer Al-Sham (the area comprising Syria, Lebanon, saudi arabia,jordon and Palestine), under the caliphate of Ómar ibn Al-Khattab (AD 583–684). He was a coppersmith from a town called Jirjaya (Gerzhiya), settled and working there, where a decisive battle took place in year 12. Certain historians contend that it was Abu Bakr's mother, named Sireen (Shirin=sweet), who had been taken captive. But, according to the Encyclopedia of Islam (London; Leiden & E.J. Brill, 1971), vol. 3, p. 947, Ibn Sirin's mother, Safiyya – a slave of the caliph Abu Bakr – was held in such esteem within the community that when she died, her laying-out was performed by three of Muhammad's wives and eighteen Badris (veterans of the battle of Badr), led by Ubay ibn Ka'b, were present at her burial. 'Omar sent him as a present, either directly to Anas ibn Malik (one of the most authoritative sources on the life and opinions expressed by Muhammad) or first to a man called Talha Al-Bukhari (from Bukhara, Central Asia) who, in turn, gave him to Anas.

Ibn Shirin is associated with providing dreams clarifications

The most notable of the books attributed to him is Dreams and Interpretations. Ibn Al-Nadim says that he was the author of Taabirul Ro'oya (What Dreams Express), which is different from or an abridged version of Muntakhabul Kalam Fi Tafsir El Ahlam (A Concise Guide for the Interpretation of Dreams) first printed in Bulaq, Egypt, in 1284 AH, in Lucknow in AD 1874 and in Bombay in 1296 AH. It was subsequently reprinted numerous times in various parts of the Arab World under different titles.

But that book, allegedly written by Ibn Sirin, who died in 110 AH, comprises many discrepancies (anachronic passages). For instance, it tells a story about Imam Shafe'i who died in 204 AH. It also quotes Is'haq Ibrahim ibn 'Abdullah Al-Kirmani, who died in 400 AH.

Nonetheless, some scholars are of the view that most if not all of the works related to Ibn Sirin might be apocryphal, or even misattributed to him completely.[1] Another example lies in the authenticity of the book "Muntakhabul Kalam ..." which is definitely non-genuine, for the simple reason that it relates those stories that happened long after Sirin's death as already stated[citation needed]. Nevertheless, it is possible that these books were written by another expert or by Ibn Sirin's students and/or admirers. The major suspect is a Muslim preacher by the name of Abu Sa'id Al-Wa'ez, himself author of several books on Islamic oneiromancy[citation needed].

What lends credence and adds weight to the theory that Ibn Sirin never wrote anything is the established fact that he abhorred books. He always relied on his excellent memory and was of the view that it is books that led to the perdition and doom of past generations. Whenever he wanted to memorize a hadith (quotation of Muhammad), he wrote it down on a piece of paper which he destroyed as soon as he learned it by heart. One night, a friend begged him to keep in his house a book he was carrying, which he categorically refused by saying he had vowed that never "shall a book" spend a night at his home. Although he was known for correctly interpreting dreams, this book cannot be authentically traced back to him.

The rare second edition in Italian of his interpretation of Egyptian and Persian dreams was translated from Leo Toscano's Latin into Italian by the famous cheiromantist Patricio Tricasso, who, in his foreword to Alessandro Bicharia, explains that he has omitted many of the original interpretations owing to many dreams being inspired either by melancholy or evil spirits. The original Arabic, Greek and Toscano's Latin texts seem not to have survived and this is the second of three Italian editions of the sixteenth century, the others appearing in 1525 and 1551 AD.

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Burger King -- robin, 00:22:20 02/06/16 Sat [1]

Burger King, often abbreviated as BK, is an American global chain of hamburger fast food restaurants headquartered in unincorporated Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States. The company began in 1953 as Insta-Burger King, a Jacksonville, Florida-based restaurant chain. After Insta-Burger King ran into financial difficulties in 1954, its two Miami-based franchisees, David Edgerton and James McLamore, purchased the company and renamed it Burger King. Over the next half century, the company would change hands four times, with its third set of owners, a partnership of TPG Capital, Bain Capital, and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners, taking it public in 2002. In late 2010, 3G Capital of Brazil acquired a majority stake in BK in a deal valued at US$3.26 billion. The new owners promptly initiated a restructuring of the company to reverse its fortunes. 3G, along with partner Berkshire Hathaway, eventually merged the company with Canadian-based doughnut chain Tim Hortons under the auspices of a new Canadian-based parent company, Restaurant Brands International.

At the end of fiscal year 2013, Burger King reported it had over 13,000 outlets in 79 countries; of these, 66 percent are in the United States and 99 percent are privately owned and operated with its new owners moving to an entirely franchised model in 2013. BK has historically used several variations of franchising to expand its operations. The manner in which the company licenses its franchisees varies depending on the region, with some regional franchises, known as master franchises, responsible for selling franchise sub-licenses on the company's behalf. Burger King's relationship with its franchises has not always been harmonious. Occasional spats between the two have caused numerous issues, and in several instances the company's and its licensees' relations have degenerated into precedent-setting court cases. Burger King's Australian franchise, Hungry Jack's, is the only franchise to operate under a different name due to a trademark dispute and a series of legal cases between the two.

The Burger King menu has expanded from a basic offering of burgers, French fries, sodas, and milkshakes in 1954, to a larger, more diverse set of product offerings. In 1957, the Whopper was the first major addition to the menu; it has since become Burger King's signature product. Conversely, BK has introduced many products which failed to catch hold in the marketplace. Some of these failures in the United States have seen success in foreign markets, where BK has also tailored its menu for regional tastes. From 2002 to 2010, Burger King aggressively targeted the 18–34 male demographic with larger products that often carried correspondingly large amounts of unhealthy fats and trans-fats. This tactic would eventually come to hurt the company's financial underpinnings and cast a negative pall on its earnings. Beginning in 2011, the company began to move away from the previous male-oriented menu and introduce new menu items, product reformulations, and packaging as part of 3G Capital's restructuring plans of the company.

The 1970s were the "Golden Age" of Burger King advertising, but beginning in the early 1980s, the company's advertising began to lose focus; a series of less successful ad campaigns created by a procession of advertising agencies continued for the next two decades. In 2003, Burger King hired the Miami-based advertising agency of Crispin Porter + Bogusky (CP+B). CP+B completely reorganized Burger King's advertising with a series of new campaigns centered on a redesigned Burger King character accompanied with a new online presence. While highly successful, some of CP+B commercials were derided for perceived sexism or cultural insensitivity. New owner, 3G Capital, terminated the relationship with CP+B in 2011 and moved its advertising to McGarryBowen to begin a new product oriented campaign with expanded demographic targeting.

The predecessor to Burger King was founded in 1953 in Jacksonville, Florida, as Insta-Burger King. After visiting the McDonald brothers' original store location in San Bernardino, California, the founders and owners (Keith J. Kramer and his wife's uncle Matthew Burns), who had purchased the rights to two pieces of equipment called "Insta" machines, opened their first restaurants. Their production model was based on one of the machines they had acquired, an oven called the "Insta-Broiler". This strategy proved so successful that they later required all of their franchises to use the device.[4][5] After the company faltered in 1959, it was purchased by its Miami, Florida franchisees, James McLamore and David R. Edgerton. They initiated a corporate restructuring of the chain, first renaming the company Burger King. They ran the company as an independent entity for eight years (eventually expanding to over 250 locations in the United States), before selling it to the Pillsbury Company in 1967.[4]:28

Pillsbury management tried several times to restructure Burger King in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The most prominent change came in 1978, when Burger King hired McDonald's executive Donald N. Smith to help revamp the company. In a plan called Operation Phoenix,[5]:118 Smith restructured corporate business practices at all levels of the company. Changes included updated franchise agreements,[6] a broader menu,[5]:119[6]:66 and new, standardized restaurant designs. Smith left Burger King for PepsiCo in 1980,[7] shortly before a system-wide decline in sales. Pillsbury Executive Vice President of Restaurant Operations Norman E. Brinker was tasked with turning the brand around and strengthening its position against its main rival, McDonald's. One of his initiatives was a new advertising campaign featuring a series of attack ads against its major competitors. This campaign started a competitive period between the top burger chains, known as the Burger Wars.[8] Brinker left Burger King in 1984, to take over Dallas-based gourmet burger chain Chili's.[9]

Smith and Brinker's efforts were initially effective,[10] but, after their respective departures, Pillsbury relaxed or discarded many of their changes and scaled back on construction of new locations. These actions stalled corporate growth and sales declined again, eventually resulting in a damaging fiscal slump for Burger King and Pillsbury.[11][12] Poor operation and ineffectual leadership continued to bog down the company for many years.[12][13] Pillsbury was acquired by the British entertainment conglomerate Grand Metropolitan in 1989.[14][15]

Initially, Grand Met attempted to bring the chain top profitability under newly-minted CEO Barry Gibbons, the changes he initiated during his two-year tenure were hit or miss. Successful new product introductions and product tie-ins with the Walt Disney company were offset by continuing image problems and ineffectual advertising programs.[16] Additionally, Gibbons sold off several of the company's assets in attempt to profit from their sale and terminated many staff members.[17][18][19] After Gibbon's departure, a series of CEO each tried to repair the brand by changing the menu, bringing in new ad agencies and other changes.[20][21][22]

The parental disregard of the Burger King brand continued through Grand Metropolitan's merger with Guinness in 1997, when the two organizations formed the new holding company Diageo.[23] Eventually, the ongoing, systematic institutional neglect of the brand through the string of owners damaged the company to the point where major franchises were driven out of business and its total value was significantly decreased.[24] Diageo eventually decided to divest itself of the money-losing chain and put the company up for sale in 2000

The twenty-first century saw the company return to independence when it was purchased from Diageo by a group of investment firms led by TPG Capital for US$1.5 billion in 2002.[16][27] The new owners rapidly moved to revitalize and reorganize the company, culminating with the company being taken public in 2006 with a highly successful initial public offering.[28][29] The firms' strategy for turning the chain around included a new advertising agency and new ad campaigns,[30][31][32] a revamped menu strategy,[33] a series of programs designed to revamp individual stores,[34] a new restaurant concept called the BK Whopper Bar,[35] and a new design format called 20/20.[35] These changes successfully re-energized the company, leading to a score of profitable quarters.[36] Yet, despite the successes of the new owners, the effects of the financial crisis of 2007–2010 weakened the company's financial outlooks while those of its immediate competitor McDonald's grew.[36][37] The falling value of Burger King eventually led to TPG and its partners divesting their interest in the chain in a US$3.26 billion sale to 3G Capital of Brazil.[38][39] Analysts from financial firms UBS and Stifel Nicolaus agreed that 3G would have to invest heavily in the company to help reverse its fortunes.[39][40] After the deal was completed, the company's stock was removed from the New York Stock Exchange, ending a four-year period as a public company.[41][42] The delisting of its stock was designed to help the company repair its fundamental business structures and continue working to close the gap with McDonald's without having to worry about pleasing shareholders.[40] In the United States domestic market, the chain has fallen to third place in terms of same store sales behind Ohio-based Wendy's. The decline is the result of 11 consecutive quarters of same store sales decline.[43]

In August 2014, 3G announced that it planned to acquire the Canadian restaurant and coffee shop chain Tim Hortons and merge it with Burger King with backing from Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway. The two chains will retain separate operations post-merger, with Burger King remaining in its Miami headquarters.[44] A Tim Hortons representative stated that the proposed merger would allow Tim Hortons to leverage Burger King's resources for international growth. The combined company will be the third-largest international chain of fast food restaurants.[45][46] The deal lead to a controversy over the practice of tax inversions, in which a company decreases the amount of taxes it pays by moving its headquarters to a tax haven, a country with lower rates but maintains the majority of their operations in their previous location. As a high-profile instance of tax inversion, news of the merger was criticized by U.S. politicians, who felt that the move would result in a loss of tax revenue to foreign interests, and could result in further government pressure against inversions

Burger King Holdings is the parent company of Burger King, also known as Burger King Corporation and abbreviated BKC, and is a Delaware corporation formed on 23 July 2002.[3]:4 A public company, it derives its income from several sources, including property rental and sales through company owned restaurants;[3]:3 however a substantial portion of its revenue is dependent on franchise fees.[3]:3 During the transitional period after the acquisition of the company by 3G Capital, Burger King's board of directors was co-chaired by John W. Chidsey, formerly CEO and chairman of the company, and Alex Behring, managing partner of 3G Capital.[50] By April 2011 the new ownership completed the restructuring of Burger King's corporate management and Chidsey tendered his resignation, leaving Behring as CEO and chair.[51]

The company operates approximately 40 subsidiaries globally that oversee franchise operations, acquisitions and financial obligations such as pensions.[3]:Exhibit 21.1 One example of a subsidiary is Burger King Brands, Inc. which is responsible for the management of Burger King's intellectual properties. A wholly owned subsidiary established in 1990,[52] Burger King Brands owns and manages all trademarks, copyrights and domain names used by the restaurants in the United States and Canada. It also responsible for providing marketing and related services to the parent company.[53]

The majority of Burger King restaurants, approximately 90%, are privately held franchises.[54] In North America Burger King Corporation is responsible for licensing operators and administering of stores. Internationally the company often pairs with other parties to operate locations or it will outright sell the operational and administrative rights to a franchisee which is given the designation of master franchise for the territory. The master franchise will then be expected to sub-license new stores, provide training support and ensure operational standards are maintained. In exchange for the oversight responsibilities, the master franchise will receive administrative and advertising support from Burger King Corporation to ensure a common marketing scheme.[55][56] The 3G Capital ownership group announced in April 2011 that it would begin divesting itself of many corporate owned locations with the intent to increase the number of privately held restaurants to 95%.[54]

As the franchisor for the brand, Burger King Holdings has several obligations and responsibilities; the company designs and deploys corporate training systems while overseeing brand standards such as building design and appearance.[34][57][58] The company also develops new products and deploys them after presenting them to its franchises for approval per a 2010 agreement between itself and the franchise ownership groups.[54] Burger King has limited approval over franchise operations such as minimum hours of operation and promotional pricing.[59][60] Additionally Burger King designates approved vendors and distributors while ensuring safety standards at the productions facilities of its vendors.[3]:6–9

Burger King is headquartered in a nine-story office tower by the Miami International Airport in unincorporated Miami-Dade County, Florida.[61] Elaine Walker of the Miami Herald stated that the headquarters has a "Burger King" sign that drivers on State Road 836 "can't miss." In addition, the chain planned to build a neon sign on the roof to advertise the brand to passengers landing at the airport. On Monday 8 July 2002, 130 employees began working at the Burger King headquarters with the remainder moving in phases in August 2002. Prior to the moving to its current headquarters in 2002, Burger King had considered moving away from the Miami area; Miami-Dade County politicians and leaders lobbied against this, and Burger King stayed.[62] In August 2014 the future of the company's Miami headquarters was again in doubt as reports surfaced Burger King was in talks with Tim Hortons about buying the Canadian restaurant chain, with a view to relocating its headquarters to Canada where the corporate tax rate is lower.[63]

The company's previous headquarters were in a southern Dade County campus described by Walker as "sprawling" and "virtually hidden away."[62] The former headquarters were located on Old Cutler Blvd in the Cutler census-designated place.[64][65] The former Burger King headquarters as of 2007 houses rental offices for several companies

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Shape of the universe -- robin, 00:16:40 02/06/16 Sat [1]

The shape of the universe is the local and global geometry of the Universe, in terms of both curvature and topology (though, strictly speaking, the concept goes beyond both). The shape of the universe is related to general relativity which describes how spacetime is curved and bent by mass and energy.

There is a distinction between the observable universe and the global universe. The observable universe consists of the part of the universe that can, in principle, be observed due to the finite speed of light and the age of the universe. The observable universe is understood as a sphere around the Earth extending 93 billion light years (8.8 *1026 meters) and would be similar at any observing point (assuming the universe is indeed isotropic , as it appears to be from our vantage point).

According to the book Our Mathematical Universe, the shape of the global universe can be explained with three categories:[1]

Finite or infinite
Flat (no curvature), open (negative curvature) or closed (positive curvature)
Connectivity, how the universe is put together, i.e., simply connected space or multiply connected.

There are certain logical connections among these properties. For example, a universe with positive curvature is necessarily finite.[2] Although it is usually assumed in the literature that a flat or negatively curved universe is infinite, this need not be the case if the topology is not the trivial one.[2]

The exact shape is still a matter of debate in physical cosmology, but experimental data from various, independent sources (WMAP, BOOMERanG and Planck for example) confirm that the observable universe is flat with only a 0.4% margin of error.[3][4][5] Theorists have been trying to construct a formal mathematical model of the shape of the universe. In formal terms, this is a 3-manifold model corresponding to the spatial section (in comoving coordinates) of the 4-dimensional space-time of the universe. The model most theorists currently use is the so-called Friedmann–Lemaître–Robertson–Walker (FLRW) model. Arguments have been put forward that the observational data best fit with the conclusion that the shape of the global universe is infinite and flat,[6] but the data are also consistent with other possible shapes, such as the so-called Poincaré dodecahedral space[7][8] and the Picard horn.

Shape of Observable Universe
As stated in the introduction, there are two aspects to consider:

its local geometry, which predominantly concerns the curvature of the universe, particularly the observable universe, and
its global geometry, which concerns the topology of the universe as a whole.

The observable universe can be thought of as a sphere that extends outwards from any observation point for 93 billion light years, going farther back in time and more redshifted the more distant away one looks. Ideally, one can continue to look back all the way to the Big Bang, however, in practice the farthest away one can look is the cosmic microwave background (CMB) as anything past that was opaque. Experimental investigations show that the observable universe is very close to isotropic and homogeneous.

If the observable universe encompasses the entire universe, we may be able to determine the global structure of the entire universe by observation. However, if the observable universe is smaller than the entire universe, our observations will be limited to only a part of the whole, and we may not be able to determine its global geometry through measurement. From experiments, it is possible to construct different mathematical models of the global geometry of the entire universe all of which are consistent with current observational data and so it is currently unknown whether the observable universe is identical to the global universe or it is instead many orders of magnitude smaller than it. The universe may be small in some dimensions and not in others (analogous to the way a cuboid is longer in the dimension of length than it is in the dimensions of width and depth). To test whether a given mathematical model describes the universe accurately, scientists look for the model's novel implications—what are some phenomena in the universe that we have not yet observed, but that must exist if the model is correct—and they devise experiments to test whether those phenomena occur or not. For example, if the universe is a small closed loop, one would expect to see multiple images of an object in the sky, although not necessarily images of the same age.

Cosmologists normally work with a given space-like slice of spacetime called the comoving coordinates, the existence of a preferred set of which is possible and widely accepted in present-day physical cosmology. The section of spacetime that can be observed is the backward light cone (all points within the cosmic light horizon, given time to reach a given observer), while the related term Hubble volume can be used to describe either the past light cone or comoving space up to the surface of last scattering. To speak of "the shape of the universe (at a point in time)" is ontologically naive from the point of view of special relativity alone: due to the relativity of simultaneity we cannot speak of different points in space as being "at the same point in time" nor, therefore, of "the shape of the universe at a point in time".
Curvature of Universe

The curvature of space is a mathematical description of whether or not the Pythagorean theorem is valid for spatial coordinates. There are three possible curvatures the universe can have.

Flat (A drawn triangle's angles add up to 180°)
Positively curved (A drawn triangle's angles add up to more than 180°)
Negatively curved (A drawn triangle's angles add up to less than 180°)

An example of a flat curvature would be any Euclidean geometry, e.g., a triangle drawn on a flat piece of paper.

Curved geometries are in the domain of Non-Euclidean geometry. An example of a positively curved surface would be drawing on the surface of a sphere. Drawing a triangle on the equator to a pole gives each angle 90°, giving a total of 270° for a triangle. An example of a negative curved surface would be drawing a triangle on a saddle or mountain pass, the curving away as the triangle moves away from the center gives a smaller angle, and the sum of the angles would add up to less than 180°.

General relativity explains that mass and energy bend the curvature of spacetime and is used to determine what curvature the universe has by using a value called the density parameter, represented with Omega (Ω). The density parameter is the average density of the universe divided by the critical energy density, that is, the mass energy needed for a universe to be flat. Put another way

If Ω = 1, the universe is flat
If Ω > 1, there is positive curvature
if Ω < 1 there is negative curvature

The geometry of the universe is usually represented in the system of comoving coordinates, according to which the expansion of the universe can be ignored. Comoving coordinates form a single frame of reference according to which the universe has a static geometry of three spatial dimensions.

Under the assumption that the universe is homogeneous and isotropic, the curvature of the observable universe, or the local geometry, is described by one of the three "primitive" geometries (in mathematics these are called the model geometries):

3-dimensional Flat Euclidean geometry, generally notated as E3
3-dimensional spherical geometry with a small curvature, often notated as S3
3-dimensional hyperbolic geometry with a small curvature

One can experimentally calculate this Ω to determine the curvature two ways. One is to count up all the mass-energy in the universe and divided by the critical energy density. Data from Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) as well as the Planck spacecraft give values for the three constitutes of all the mass-energy in the universe - normal mass (baryonic matter and dark matter), relativistic particles (photon and neutrinos) and dark energy or the cosmological constant:[10][11]

\Omega_{mass} \approx 0.315 \pm 0.018

\Omega_{relativistic} \approx 9.24 * 10^{-5}

\Omega_{\Lambda} \approx 0.6817 \pm 0.0018

\Omega_{total} = \Omega_{mass} + \Omega_{relativistic} + \Omega_{\Lambda} = 1.00 \pm 0.02

The actual value for critical density value is measured as \rho_{critical} = 9.47 *10^{-27} kg/m^3. From these values, it seems that within experimental error, the universe seems to be flat.

Another way to measure Ω is to do so geometrically by measuring an angle across the observable universe. We can do this by using the CMB and measuring the power spectrum and temperature anisotropy. For an intuition, one can imagine finding a gas cloud that is not in thermal equilibrium due to being so large that light speed cannot propagate the information of the thermal information. Knowing this propagation speed, we then know the size of the gas cloud as well as the distance to the gas cloud, we then have two sides of a triangle and can then determine the angles. Using a method similar to this, the BOOMERanG experiment has determined that the sum of the angles to 180° within experimental error, corresponding to an \Omega_{total} \approx 1.00 \pm 0.12.[12]

These and other astronomical measurements constrain the spatial curvature to be very close to zero, although they do not constrain its sign. This means that although the local geometries of spacetime are generated by the theory of relativity based on spacetime intervals, we can approximate 3-space by the familiar Euclidean geometry.

The Friedmann–Lemaître–Robertson–Walker (FLRW) model using Friedmann equations is commonly used to model the universe. The FLRW model provides a curvature of the universe based on the mathematics of fluid dynamics, that is, modeling the matter within the universe as a perfect fluid. Although stars and structures of mass can be introduced into an "almost FLRW" model, a strictly FLRW model is used to approximate the local geometry of the observable universe. Another way of saying this is that if all forms of dark energy are ignored, then the curvature of the universe can be determined by measuring the average density of matter within it, assuming that all matter is evenly distributed (rather than the distortions caused by 'dense' objects such as galaxies). This assumption is justified by the observations that, while the universe is "weakly" inhomogeneous and anisotropic (see the large-scale structure of the cosmos), it is on average homogeneous and isotropic.
Global Universe Structure

Global structure covers the geometry and the topology of the whole universe—both the observable universe and beyond. While the local geometry does not determine the global geometry completely, it does limit the possibilities, particularly a geometry of a constant curvature. The universe is often taken to be a geodesic manifold, free of topological defects; relaxing either of these complicates the analysis considerably. A global geometry is a local geometry plus a topology. It follows that a topology alone does not give a global geometry: for instance, Euclidean 3-space and hyperbolic 3-space have the same topology but different global geometries.

As stated in the introduction, investigations within the study of global structure of include

Whether the universe is infinite or finite in extent
Whether the geometry of the global universe is flat, positively curved, or negatively curved
Whether the topology is simply connected like a sphere or multiply connected, like a torus

Infinite or finite

One of the presently unanswered questions about the universe is whether it is infinite or finite in extent. For intuition, it can be understood that a finite universe has a finite volume that, for example, could be in theory filled up with a finite amount of material, while an infinite universe is unbounded and no numerical volume could possibly fill it. Mathematically, the question of whether the universe is infinite or finite is referred to as boundedness. An infinite universe (unbounded metric space) means that there are points arbitrarily far apart: for any distance d, there are points that are of a distance at least d apart. A finite universe is a bounded metric space, where there is some distance d such that all points are within distance d of each other. The smallest such d is called the diameter of the universe, in which case the universe has a well-defined "volume" or "scale."
Bounded and Unbounded

Assuming a finite universe, the universe can either have an edge or no edge. Many finite mathematical spaces, e.g., a disc, have an edge or boundary. Spaces that have an edge are difficult to treat, both conceptually and mathematically. Namely, it is very difficult to state what would happen at the edge of such a universe. For this reason, spaces that have an edge are typically excluded from consideration.

However, there exist many finite spaces, such as the 3-sphere and 3-torus, which have no edges. Mathematically, these spaces are referred to as being compact without boundary. The term compact basically means that it is finite in extent ("bounded") and is a closed set. The term "without boundary" means that the space has no edges. Moreover, so that calculus can be applied, the universe is typically assumed to be a differentiable manifold. A mathematical object that possess all these properties, compact without boundary and differentiable, is termed a closed manifold. The 3-sphere and 3-torus are both closed manifolds.

An infinite universe (or infinite in a specific spatial direction) must be unbounded in that direction.

The curvature of the universe places constraints on the topology. If the spatial geometry is spherical, i.e., possess positive curvature, the topology is compact. For a flat (zero curvature) or a hyperbolic (negative curvature) spatial geometry, the topology can be either compact or infinite.[13] It's very important to note that many textbooks erroneously state that a flat universe implies an infinite universe; however, the correct statement is that a flat universe that is also simply connected implies an infinite universe.[13] For example, Euclidean space is flat, simply connected and infinite, but the torus is flat, multiply connected, finite and compact.

In general, local to global theorems in Riemannian geometry relate the local geometry to the global geometry. If the local geometry has constant curvature, the global geometry is very constrained, as described in Thurston geometries.

The latest research shows that even the most powerful future experiments (like SKA, Planck..) will not be able to distinguish between flat, open and closed universe if the true value of cosmological curvature parameter is smaller than 10−4. If the true value of the cosmological curvature parameter is larger than 10−3 we will be able to distinguish between these three models even now.[14]

Results of the Planck mission released in 2015 show the cosmological curvature parameter, ΩK, to be 0.000±0.005, coincident with a flat universe.[15]
Universe with zero curvature

In a universe with zero curvature, the local geometry is flat. The most obvious global structure is that of Euclidean space, which is infinite in extent. Flat universes that are finite in extent include the torus and Klein bottle. Moreover, in three dimensions, there are 10 finite closed flat 3-manifolds, of which 6 are orientable and 4 are non-orientable. The most familiar is the aforementioned 3-Torus universe.

In the absence of dark energy, a flat universe expands forever but at a continually decelerating rate, with expansion asymptotically approaching zero. With dark energy, the expansion rate of the universe initially slows down, due to the effect of gravity, but eventually increases. The ultimate fate of the universe is the same as that of an open universe.

A flat universe can have zero total energy.
Universe with positive curvature

A positively curved universe is described by spherical geometry, and can be thought of as a three-dimensional hypersphere, or some other spherical 3-manifold (such as the Poincaré dodecahedral space), all of which are quotients of the 3-sphere.

Poincaré dodecahedral space, a positively curved space, colloquially described as "soccerball-shaped", as it is the quotient of the 3-sphere by the binary icosahedral group, which is very close to icosahedral symmetry, the symmetry of a soccer ball. This was proposed by Jean-Pierre Luminet and colleagues in 2003[7][16] and an optimal orientation on the sky for the model was estimated in 2008.[8]
Universe with negative curvature

A hyperbolic universe, one of a negative spatial curvature, is described by hyperbolic geometry, and can be thought of locally as a three-dimensional analog of an infinitely extended saddle shape. There are a great variety of hyperbolic 3-manifolds, and their classification is not completely understood. For hyperbolic local geometry, many of the possible three-dimensional spaces are informally called horn topologies, so called because of the shape of the pseudosphere, a canonical model of hyperbolic geometry. An example is the Picard horn, a negatively curved space, colloquially described as "funnel-shaped".[9]
Curvature: Open or closed

When cosmologists speak of the universe as being "open" or "closed", they most commonly are referring to whether the curvature is negative or positive. These meanings of open and closed are different from the mathematical meaning of open and closed used for sets in topological spaces and for the mathematical meaning of open and closed manifolds, which gives rise to ambiguity and confusion. In mathematics, there are definitions for a closed manifold (i.e., compact without boundary) and open manifold (i.e., one that is not compact and without boundary). A "closed universe" is necessarily a closed manifold. An "open universe" can be either a closed or open manifold. For example, the Friedmann–Lemaître–Robertson–Walker (FLRW) model the universe is considered to be without boundaries, in which case "compact universe" could describe a universe that is a closed manifold.

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Big Bang -- robin, 00:13:06 02/06/16 Sat [1]

The Big Bang theory is the prevailing cosmological model for the universe from the earliest known periods through its subsequent large-scale evolution.[1][2][3] The model accounts for the fact that the universe expanded from a very high density and high temperature state,[4][5] and offers a comprehensive explanation for a broad range of phenomena, including the abundance of light elements, the cosmic microwave background, large scale structure and Hubble's Law.[6] If the known laws of physics are extrapolated beyond where they are valid, there is a singularity. Modern measurements place this moment at approximately 13.8 billion years ago, which is thus considered the age of the universe.[7] After the initial expansion, the universe cooled sufficiently to allow the formation of subatomic particles, and later simple atoms. Giant clouds of these primordial elements later coalesced through gravity to form stars and galaxies.

Since Georges Lemaître first noted, in 1927, that an expanding universe might be traced back in time to an originating single point, scientists have built on his idea of cosmic expansion. While the scientific community was once divided between supporters of two different expanding universe theories, the Big Bang and the Steady State theory, accumulated empirical evidence provides strong support for the former.[8] In 1929, from analysis of galactic redshifts, Edwin Hubble concluded that galaxies are drifting apart, important observational evidence consistent with the hypothesis of an expanding universe. In 1965, the cosmic microwave background radiation was discovered, which was crucial evidence in favor of the Big Bang model, since that theory predicted the existence of background radiation throughout the universe before it was discovered. More recently, measurements of the redshifts of supernovae indicate that the expansion of the universe is accelerating, an observation attributed to dark energy's existence.[9] The known physical laws of nature can be used to calculate the characteristics of the universe in detail back in time to an initial state of extreme density and temperature.

American astronomer Edwin Hubble observed that the distances to faraway galaxies were strongly correlated with their redshifts. This was interpreted to mean that all distant galaxies and clusters are receding away from our vantage point with an apparent velocity proportional to their distance: that is, the farther they are, the faster they move away from us, regardless of direction.[17] Assuming the Copernican principle (that the Earth is not the center of the universe), the only remaining interpretation is that all observable regions of the universe are receding from all others. Since we know that the distance between galaxies increases today, it must mean that in the past galaxies were closer together. The continuous expansion of the universe implies that the universe was denser and hotter in the past.

Large particle accelerators can replicate the conditions that prevailed after the early moments of the universe, resulting in confirmation and refinement of the details of the Big Bang model. However, these accelerators can only probe so far into high energy regimes. Consequently, the state of the universe in the earliest instants of the Big Bang expansion is still poorly understood and an area of open investigation and indeed, speculation.

The first subatomic particles included protons, neutrons, and electrons. Though simple atomic nuclei formed within the first three minutes after the Big Bang, thousands of years passed before the first electrically neutral atoms formed. The majority of atoms produced by the Big Bang were hydrogen, along with helium and traces of lithium. Giant clouds of these primordial elements later coalesced through gravity to form stars and galaxies, and the heavier elements were synthesized either within stars or during supernovae.

The Big Bang theory offers a comprehensive explanation for a broad range of observed phenomena, including the abundance of light elements, the cosmic microwave background, large scale structure, and Hubble's Law.[6] The framework for the Big Bang model relies on Albert Einstein's theory of general relativity and on simplifying assumptions such as homogeneity and isotropy of space. The governing equations were formulated by Alexander Friedmann, and similar solutions were worked on by Willem de Sitter. Since then, astrophysicists have incorporated observational and theoretical additions into the Big Bang model, and its parametrization as the Lambda-CDM model serves as the framework for current investigations of theoretical cosmology. The Lambda-CDM model is the standard model of Big Bang cosmology, the simplest model that provides a reasonably good account of various observations about the universe.
Main article: Timeline of the Big Bang
See also: Gravitational singularity and Planck epoch

Extrapolation of the expansion of the universe backwards in time using general relativity yields an infinite density and temperature at a finite time in the past.[18] This singularity signals the breakdown of general relativity and thus, all the laws of physics. How closely this can be extrapolated toward the singularity is debated—certainly no closer than the end of the Planck epoch. This singularity is sometimes called "the Big Bang",[19] but the term can also refer to the early hot, dense phase itself,[20][notes 1] which can be considered the "birth" of our universe. Based on measurements of the expansion using Type Ia supernovae and measurements of temperature fluctuations in the cosmic microwave background, the universe has an estimated age of 13.799 ± 0.021 billion years.[21] The agreement of these three independent measurements strongly supports the ΛCDM model that describes in detail the contents of the universe.
Inflation and baryogenesis
Main articles: Cosmic inflation and baryogenesis

The earliest phases of the Big Bang are subject to much speculation. In the most common models the universe was filled homogeneously and isotropically with a very high energy density and huge temperatures and pressures and was very rapidly expanding and cooling. Approximately 10−37 seconds into the expansion, a phase transition caused a cosmic inflation, during which the universe grew exponentially.[22] After inflation stopped, the universe consisted of a quark–gluon plasma, as well as all other elementary particles.[23] Temperatures were so high that the random motions of particles were at relativistic speeds, and particle–antiparticle pairs of all kinds were being continuously created and destroyed in collisions.[4] At some point an unknown reaction called baryogenesis violated the conservation of baryon number, leading to a very small excess of quarks and leptons over antiquarks and antileptons—of the order of one part in 30 million. This resulted in the predominance of matter over antimatter in the present universe

The universe continued to decrease in density and fall in temperature, hence the typical energy of each particle was decreasing. Symmetry breaking phase transitions put the fundamental forces of physics and the parameters of elementary particles into their present form.[25] After about 10−11 seconds, the picture becomes less speculative, since particle energies drop to values that can be attained in particle physics experiments. At about 10−6 seconds, quarks and gluons combined to form baryons such as protons and neutrons. The small excess of quarks over antiquarks led to a small excess of baryons over antibaryons. The temperature was now no longer high enough to create new proton–antiproton pairs (similarly for neutrons–antineutrons), so a mass annihilation immediately followed, leaving just one in 1010 of the original protons and neutrons, and none of their antiparticles. A similar process happened at about 1 second for electrons and positrons. After these annihilations, the remaining protons, neutrons and electrons were no longer moving relativistically and the energy density of the universe was dominated by photons (with a minor contribution from neutrinos).

A few minutes into the expansion, when the temperature was about a billion (one thousand million; 109; SI prefix giga-) kelvin and the density was about that of air, neutrons combined with protons to form the universe's deuterium and helium nuclei in a process called Big Bang nucleosynthesis.[26] Most protons remained uncombined as hydrogen nuclei. As the universe cooled, the rest mass energy density of matter came to gravitationally dominate that of the photon radiation. After about 379,000 years the electrons and nuclei combined into atoms (mostly hydrogen); hence the radiation decoupled from matter and continued through space largely unimpeded. This relic radiation is known as the cosmic microwave background radiation.[27] The chemistry of life may have begun shortly after the Big Bang, 13.8 billion years ago, during a habitable epoch when the universe was only 10–17 million years old.

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Batman -- robin, 00:09:21 02/06/16 Sat [1]

Batman is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character was created by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger,[5][6] and first appeared in Detective Comics #27 (May 1939). Originally named "the Bat-Man", the character is also referred to by such epithets as the "Caped Crusader", the "Dark Knight", and the "World's Greatest Detective".[7]

Batman's secret identity is Bruce Wayne, an American billionaire, playboy, philanthropist, and owner of Wayne Enterprises. After witnessing the murder of his parents as a child, he swore revenge on criminals, an oath tempered by a sense of justice. Wayne trains himself both physically and intellectually and crafts a bat-inspired persona to fight crime.[8] Batman operates in the fictional Gotham City, with assistance from various supporting characters, including his butler Alfred, police commissioner Jim Gordon, and vigilante allies such as Robin. Unlike most superheroes, Batman does not possess any superpowers; rather, he relies on his genius intellect, physical prowess, martial arts abilities, detective skills, science and technology, vast wealth, provocation of fear and intimidation, and an indomitable will. A large assortment of villains make up Batman's rogues gallery, including his archenemy the Joker.

Batman became popular soon after his introduction and gained his own comic book title, Batman, in 1940. As the decades went on, differing interpretations of the character emerged. The late 1960s Batman television series used a camp aesthetic, which continued to be associated with the character for years after the show ended. Various creators worked to return the character to his dark roots, culminating in 1986 with The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller. The success of Warner Bros.' live-action Batman feature films have subsequently helped maintain public interest in the character.[9]

An American cultural icon, Batman has been licensed and adapted into a variety of media, from radio to television and film, and appears on a variety of merchandise sold all over the world, such as toys and video games. The character has also intrigued psychiatrists, with many trying to understand the character's psyche. In May 2011, Batman placed second on IGN's Top 100 Comic Book Heroes of All Time,[10] after Superman. Empire magazine listed him second in their 50 Greatest Comic Book Characters of All Time. The character has been portrayed on both film and television by Lewis Wilson, Robert Lowery, Adam West, Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer, George Clooney, Christian Bale, and, soon, by Ben Affleck.


In early 1939, the success of Superman in Action Comics prompted editors at the comic book division of National Publications (the future DC Comics) to request more superheroes for its titles. In response, Bob Kane created "the Bat-Man".[11] Collaborator Bill Finger recalled that "Kane had an idea for a character called 'Batman,' and he'd like me to see the drawings. I went over to Kane's, and he had drawn a character who looked very much like Superman with kind of ... reddish tights, I believe, with boots ... no gloves, no gauntlets ... with a small domino mask, swinging on a rope. He had two stiff wings that were sticking out, looking like bat wings. And under it was a big sign ... BATMAN".[12] The bat-wing-like cape was suggested by Bob Kane, inspired as he was by Leonardo Da Vinci's sketch of an ornithopter flying device as a child.

Finger suggested giving the character a cowl instead of a simple domino mask, a cape instead of wings, and gloves; he also recommended removing the red sections from the original costume.[15][16][17][18] Finger said he devised the name Bruce Wayne for the character's secret identity: "Bruce Wayne's first name came from Robert Bruce, the Scottish patriot, Chief of the Knights Templar. Bruce, being a playboy, was a man of gentry. I searched for a name that would suggest colonialism. I tried Adams, Hancock ... then I thought of Mad Anthony Wayne."[19] He later said his suggestions were influenced by Lee Falk's popular The Phantom, a syndicated newspaper comic-strip character with which Kane was familiar as well.[20]

Kane and Finger drew upon contemporary 1930s popular culture for inspiration regarding much of the Bat-Man's look, personality, methods, and weaponry. Details find predecessors in pulp fiction, comic strips, newspaper headlines, and autobiographical details referring to Kane himself.[21] As an aristocratic hero with a double identity, the Bat-Man had predecessors in the Scarlet Pimpernel (created by Baroness Emmuska Orczy, 1903) and Zorro (created by Johnston McCulley, 1919). Like them, he performed his heroic deeds in secret, averted suspicion by playing the fool in public, and marked his work with a signature symbol. Kane specifically noted the influence of the films The Mark of Zorro (1920) and The Bat Whispers (1930) in the creation of the character's iconography. Finger, drawing inspiration from pulp heroes like Doc Savage, The Shadow, Dick Tracy, and Sherlock Holmes, made the character a master sleuth.[22][23]

In his 1989 autobiography, Kane detailed Finger's contributions to Batman's creation:

One day I called Bill and said, 'I have a new character called the Bat-Man and I've made some crude, elementary sketches I'd like you to look at.' He came over and I showed him the drawings. At the time, I only had a small domino mask, like the one Robin later wore, on Batman's face. Bill said, 'Why not make him look more like a bat and put a hood on him, and take the eyeballs out and just put slits for eyes to make him look more mysterious?' At this point, the Bat-Man wore a red union suit; the wings, trunks, and mask were black. I thought that red and black would be a good combination. Bill said that the costume was too bright: 'Color it dark gray to make it look more ominous.' The cape looked like two stiff bat wings attached to his arms. As Bill and I talked, we realized that these wings would get cumbersome when Bat-Man was in action, and changed them into a cape, scalloped to look like bat wings when he was fighting or swinging down on a rope. Also, he didn't have any gloves on, and we added them so that he wouldn't leave fingerprints.[20]

Subsequent creation credit

Kane signed away ownership in the character in exchange for, among other compensation, a mandatory byline on all Batman comics. This byline did not originally say "Batman created by Bob Kane"; his name was simply written on the title page of each story. The name disappeared from the comic book in the mid-1960s, replaced by credits for each story's actual writer and artists. In the late 1970s, when Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster began receiving a "created by" credit on the Superman titles, along with William Moulton Marston being given the byline for creating Wonder Woman, Batman stories began saying "Created by Bob Kane" in addition to the other credits.

Finger did not receive the same recognition. While he had received credit for other DC work since the 1940s, he began, in the 1960s, to receive limited acknowledgment for his Batman writing; in the letters page of Batman #169 (February 1965) for example, editor Julius Schwartz names him as the creator of the Riddler, one of Batman's recurring villains. However, Finger's contract left him only with his writing page rate and no byline. Kane wrote, "Bill was disheartened by the lack of major accomplishments in his career. He felt that he had not used his creative potential to its fullest and that success had passed him by."[19] At the time of Finger's death in 1974, DC had not officially credited Finger as Batman co-creator.

Jerry Robinson, who also worked with Finger and Kane on the strip at this time, has criticized Kane for failing to share the credit. He recalled Finger resenting his position, stating in a 2005 interview with The Comics Journal:

Bob made him more insecure, because while he slaved working on Batman, he wasn't sharing in any of the glory or the money that Bob began to make, which is why... [he was] going to leave [Kane's employ]. ... [Kane] should have credited Bill as co-creator, because I know; I was there. ... That was one thing I would never forgive Bob for, was not to take care of Bill or recognize his vital role in the creation of Batman. As with Siegel and Shuster, it should have been the same, the same co-creator credit in the strip, writer, and artist.[24]

Although Kane initially rebutted Finger's claims at having created the character, writing in a 1965 open letter to fans that "it seemed to me that Bill Finger has given out the impression that he and not myself created the ''Batman, t' [sic] as well as Robin and all the other leading villains and characters. This statement is fraudulent and entirely untrue." Kane himself also commented on Finger's lack of credit. "The trouble with being a 'ghost' writer or artist is that you must remain rather anonymously without 'credit'. However, if one wants the 'credit', then one has to cease being a 'ghost' or follower and become a leader or innovator."[25]

In 1989, Kane revisited Finger's situation, recalling in an interview,

In those days it was like, one artist and he had his name over it [the comic strip] — the policy of DC in the comic books was, if you can't write it, obtain other writers, but their names would never appear on the comic book in the finished version. So Bill never asked me for it [the byline] and I never volunteered — I guess my ego at that time. And I felt badly, really, when he [Finger] died.[26]

In September 2015, DC Entertainment revealed that Finger would be receiving credit for his role in Batman's creation on the 2016 superhero film Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and the second season of Gotham after a deal was worked out between the Finger family and DC.[5] Finger received credit as a creator of Batman for the first time in a comic in October 2015 with Batman and Robin Eternal #3 and Batman: Arkham Knight Genesis #3. The updated acknowledgement for the character appeared as "Batman created by Bob Kane with Bill Finger"

Early years
The first Batman story, "The Case of the Chemical Syndicate", was published in Detective Comics #27 (May 1939). Finger said, "Batman was originally written in the style of the pulps",[27] and this influence was evident with Batman showing little remorse over killing or maiming criminals. Batman proved a hit character, and he received his own solo title in 1940, while continuing to star in Detective Comics. By that time, National was the top-selling and most influential publisher in the industry; Batman and the company's other major hero, Superman, were the cornerstones of the company's success.[28] The two characters were featured side-by-side as the stars of World's Finest Comics, which was originally titled World's Best Comics when it debuted in fall 1940. Creators including Jerry Robinson and Dick Sprang also worked on the strips during this period.

Over the course of the first few Batman strips elements were added to the character and the artistic depiction of Batman evolved. Kane noted that within six issues he drew the character's jawline more pronounced, and lengthened the ears on the costume. "About a year later he was almost the full figure, my mature Batman", Kane said.[29] Batman's characteristic utility belt was introduced in Detective Comics #29 (July 1939), followed by the boomerang-like batarang and the first bat-themed vehicle, the Batplane, in #31 (Sept. 1939). The character's origin was revealed in #33 (Nov. 1939), unfolding in a two-page story that establishes the brooding persona of Batman, a character driven by the death of his parents. Written by Finger, it depicts a young Bruce Wayne witnessing his parents' murder at the hands of a mugger. Days later, at their grave, the child vows that "by the spirits of my parents [I will] avenge their deaths by spending the rest of my life warring on all criminals".[30][31][32]

The early, pulp-inflected portrayal of Batman started to soften in Detective Comics #38 (April 1940) with the introduction of Robin, Batman's junior counterpart.[33] Robin was introduced, based on Finger's suggestion, because Batman needed a "Watson" with whom Batman could talk.[34] Sales nearly doubled, despite Kane's preference for a solo Batman, and it sparked a proliferation of "kid sidekicks".[35] The first issue of the solo spin-off series Batman was notable not only for introducing two of his most persistent enemies, the Joker and Catwoman, but for a story in which Batman shoots some monstrous giants to death. That story prompted editor Whitney Ellsworth to decree that the character could no longer kill or use a gun.[36]

By 1942, the writers and artists behind the Batman comics had established most of the basic elements of the Batman mythos.[37] In the years following World War II, DC Comics "adopted a postwar editorial direction that increasingly de-emphasized social commentary in favor of lighthearted juvenile fantasy". The impact of this editorial approach was evident in Batman comics of the postwar period; removed from the "bleak and menacing world" of the strips of the early 1940s, Batman was instead portrayed as a respectable citizen and paternal figure that inhabited a "bright and colorful" environment.[38]
1950s and early 1960s

Batman was one of the few superhero characters to be continuously published as interest in the genre waned during the 1950s. In the story "The Mightiest Team in the World" in Superman #76 (June 1952), Batman teams up with Superman for the first time and the pair discovers each other's secret identity.[39] Following the success of this story, World's Finest Comics was revamped so it featured stories starring both heroes together, instead of the separate Batman and Superman features that had been running before.[40] The team-up of the characters was "a financial success in an era when those were few and far between";[41] this series of stories ran until the book's cancellation in 1986.

Batman comics were among those criticized when the comic book industry came under scrutiny with the publication of psychologist Fredric Wertham's book Seduction of the Innocent in 1954. Wertham's thesis was that children imitated crimes committed in comic books, and that these works corrupted the morals of the youth. Wertham criticized Batman comics for their supposed homosexual overtones and argued that Batman and Robin were portrayed as lovers.[42] Wertham's criticisms raised a public outcry during the 1950s, eventually leading to the establishment of the Comics Code Authority, a code that is no longer in use by the comic book industry. The tendency towards a "sunnier Batman" in the postwar years intensified after the introduction of the Comics Code.[43] Scholars have suggested that the characters of Batwoman (in 1956) and the pre-Barbara Gordon Bat-Girl (in 1961) were introduced in part to refute the allegation that Batman and Robin were gay, and the stories took on a campier, lighter feel.[44]

In the late 1950s, Batman stories gradually became more science fiction-oriented, an attempt at mimicking the success of other DC characters that had dabbled in the genre.[45] New characters such as Batwoman, Ace the Bat-Hound, and Bat-Mite were introduced. Batman's adventures often involved odd transformations or bizarre space aliens. In 1960, Batman debuted as a member of the Justice League of America in The Brave and the Bold #28 (Feb. 1960), and went on to appear in several Justice League comic series starting later that same year.
"New Look" Batman and camp

By 1964, sales on Batman titles had fallen drastically. Bob Kane noted that, as a result, DC was "planning to kill Batman off altogether".[46] In response to this, editor Julius Schwartz was assigned to the Batman titles. He presided over drastic changes, beginning with 1964's Detective Comics #327 (May 1964), which was cover-billed as the "New Look". Schwartz introduced changes designed to make Batman more contemporary, and to return him to more detective-oriented stories. He brought in artist Carmine Infantino to help overhaul the character. The Batmobile was redesigned, and Batman's costume was modified to incorporate a yellow ellipse behind the bat-insignia. The space aliens, time travel, and characters of the 1950s such as Batwoman, Ace, and Bat-Mite were retired. Batman's butler Alfred was killed off (though his death was quickly reversed) while a new female relative for the Wayne family, Aunt Harriet, came to live with Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson.[47]

The debut of the Batman television series in 1966 had a profound influence on the character. The success of the series increased sales throughout the comic book industry, and Batman reached a circulation of close to 900,000 copies.[48] Elements such as the character of Batgirl and the show's campy nature were introduced into the comics; the series also initiated the return of Alfred. Although both the comics and TV show were successful for a time, the camp approach eventually wore thin and the show was canceled in 1968. In the aftermath, the Batman comics themselves lost popularity once again. As Julius Schwartz noted, "When the television show was a success, I was asked to be campy, and of course when the show faded, so did the comic books."[49]

Starting in 1969, writer Dennis O'Neil and artist Neal Adams made a deliberate effort to distance Batman from the campy portrayal of the 1960s TV series and to return the character to his roots as a "grim avenger of the night".[50] O'Neil said his idea was "simply to take it back to where it started. I went to the DC library and read some of the early stories. I tried to get a sense of what Kane and Finger were after."[51]

O'Neil and Adams first collaborated on the story "The Secret of the Waiting Graves" (Detective Comics #395, January 1970). Few stories were true collaborations between O'Neil, Adams, Schwartz, and inker Dick Giordano, and in actuality these men were mixed and matched with various other creators during the 1970s; nevertheless the influence of their work was "tremendous".[52] Giordano said: "We went back to a grimmer, darker Batman, and I think that's why these stories did so well..."[53] While the work of O'Neil and Adams was popular with fans, the acclaim did little to improve declining sales; the same held true with a similarly acclaimed run by writer Steve Englehart and penciler Marshall Rogers in Detective Comics #471–476 (August 1977 – April 1978), which went on to influence the 1989 movie Batman and be adapted for Batman: The Animated Series, which debuted in 1992.[54] Regardless, circulation continued to drop through the 1970s and 1980s, hitting an all-time low in 1985.[55]
The Dark Knight Returns
See also: Alternative versions of Batman

Frank Miller's limited series The Dark Knight Returns (February–June 1986), which tells the story of a 55-year-old Batman coming out of retirement in a possible future, reinvigorated the character. The Dark Knight Returns was a financial success and has since become one of the medium's most noted touchstones.[56] The series also sparked a major resurgence in the character's popularity.[57]

That year Dennis O'Neil took over as editor of the Batman titles and set the template for the portrayal of Batman following DC's status quo-altering miniseries Crisis on Infinite Earths. O'Neil operated under the assumption that he was hired to revamp the character and as a result tried to instill a different tone in the books than had gone before.[58] One outcome of this new approach was the "Year One" storyline in Batman #404–407 (February–May 1987), in which Frank Miller and artist David Mazzucchelli redefined the character's origins. Writer Alan Moore and artist Brian Bolland continued this dark trend with 1988's 48-page one-shot Batman: The Killing Joke, in which the Joker, attempting to drive Commissioner Gordon insane, cripples Gordon's daughter Barbara, and then kidnaps and tortures the commissioner, physically and psychologically.

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Shuttle Carrier Aircraft -- robin, 00:06:00 02/06/16 Sat [1]

The Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) were two extensively modified Boeing 747 airliners that NASA used to transport Space Shuttle orbiters. One is a 747-100 model, while the other is a short range 747-100SR.

The SCAs were used to ferry Space Shuttles from landing sites back to the Shuttle Landing Facility at the Kennedy Space Center, and to and from other locations too distant for the orbiters to be delivered by ground transport. The orbiters were placed on top of the SCAs by Mate-Demate Devices, large gantry-like structures that hoisted the orbiters off the ground for post-flight servicing then mated them with the SCAs for ferry flights.

In approach and landing test flights conducted in 1977, the test shuttle Enterprise was released from an SCA during flight and glided to a landing under its own control

Design and development
The Lockheed C-5 Galaxy was considered for the shuttle-carrier role by NASA, but rejected in favor of the 747—in part due to the 747's low-wing design in comparison to the C-5's high-wing design, and also because the U.S. Air Force would have retained ownership of the C-5, while NASA could own the 747s outright.

The first aircraft, a Boeing 747-100 registered N905NA, was originally manufactured for American Airlines and still carried visible American cheatlines while testing Enterprise in the 1970s. It was acquired in 1974 and initially used for trailing wake vortex research as part of a broader study by NASA Dryden, as well as Shuttle tests involving an F-104 flying in close formation and simulating a "release" from the 747. The aircraft appears in the background of a scene from The Six Million Dollar Man's second season episode "The Deadly Replay", filmed in 1974 at Edwards AFB.

The aircraft was extensively modified by Boeing in 1976.[2] While first-class seats were kept for NASA passengers, its main cabin and insulation were stripped,[3] mounting struts were added, and the fuselage was strengthened. Vertical stabilizers were added to the tail to aid stability when the Orbiter was being carried. The avionics and engines were also upgraded, and an escape tunnel system similar to that used on Boeing's first 747 test flights was added. The flight crew escape tunnel system was later removed following the completion of the Approach and Landing Tests (ALT) due to concerns over possible engine ingestion of an escaping crew member.

Flying with the additional drag and weight of the Orbiter imposed significant fuel and altitude penalties. The range was reduced to 1,000 nautical miles (1,850 km), compared to an unladen range of 5500 nautical miles (10,100 km), requiring an SCA to stop several times to refuel on a transcontinental flight.[4] Without the Orbiter, the SCA needed to carry ballast to balance out its center of gravity.[3] The SCA had an altitude ceiling of 15,000 feet and a maximum cruise speed of Mach 0.6 with the orbiter attached.[4] A crew of 170 took a week to prepare the shuttle and SCA for flight.

Studies were conducted to equip the SCA with aerial refueling equipment, a modification already made to the U.S. Air Force E-4 (modified 747-200s) and 747 tanker transports for the IIAF. However, during formation flying with a tanker aircraft to test refueling approaches, minor cracks were spotted on the tailfin of N905NA. While these were not likely to have been caused by the test flights, it was felt that there was no sense taking unnecessary risks. Since there was no urgent need to provide an aerial refueling capacity, the tests were suspended.

By 1983, SCA N905NA no longer carried the distinct American Airlines tricolor cheatline. NASA replaced it with its own livery, consisting of a white fuselage and a single blue cheatline.[6] That year, this aircraft was also used to fly Enterprise on a tour in Europe, with refuelling stops in Goose Bay, Canada; Keflavik, Iceland; England; and West Germany. It then went to the Paris Air Show.[7]

In 1988, in the wake of the Challenger accident, NASA procured a surplus 747-100SR from Japan Airlines. Registered N911NA it entered service with NASA in 1990 after undergoing modifications similar to N905NA. It was first used in 1991 to ferry the new shuttle Endeavour from the manufacturers in Palmdale, California to Kennedy Space Center.

Based at the Dryden Flight Research Center within Edwards Air Force Base in California[3] the two aircraft were functionally identical, although N911NA has five upper-deck windows on each side, while N905NA has only two. The rear mounting points on both aircraft were labeled with humorous instructions to "attach orbiter here" or "place orbiter here", clarified by the precautionary note "black side down".[8][9]

Shuttle Carriers were capable of operating from alternative shuttle landing sites such as those in the United Kingdom, Spain, and France. Due to the reduced range of the Shuttle Carrier while mated to an orbiter, additional preparations such as removal of the payload from the orbiter may have been necessary to reduce its weight

Ferry flights
Further information: List of Shuttle Carrier Aircraft flights

Ferry flights generally transported the orbiters from Edwards Air Force Base, the shuttle's secondary landing site, to the Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) at the Kennedy Space Center where the orbiter was processed. This was common in the early days of the space shuttle program when weather conditions at the SLF prevented the shuttle from landing there. Some flights started at the Dryden Flight Research Center following delivery of the orbiter from Rockwell International to NASA from the nearby facilities in Palmdale, California.[12]

At the end of the space shuttle program the SCA was used to deliver the retired orbiters from the Kennedy Space Center to their museums. Discovery was delivered to the Udvar-Hazy Center of the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, Virginia, near Washington, D.C. on April 19, 2012. On April 17, 2012, Discovery was flown atop a Shuttle Carrier Aircraft escorted by a NASA T-38 Talon chase aircraft in a final farewell flight. The 747 and Discovery flew over Washington, D.C. and the metropolitan area around 10 am and arrived at Dulles around 11 am. The flyover and landing were widely covered on national news media.

The last ferry flight took Endeavour from Kennedy Space Center to Los Angeles between 19 and 21 September 2012 via Ellington Field and Edwards Air Force Base. After leaving Edwards the SCA with Endeavour performed low level flyovers above various landmarks across California, from Sacramento to the San Francisco Bay Area, and finally to Los Angeles. Endeavour was delivered to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). From there the orbiter was transported through the streets of Los Angeles and Inglewood to its final destination in the California Science Center in Exposition Park.

Shuttle Carrier N911NA retired on February 8, 2012 after its final mission to the Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility in Palmdale, California, and will be used as a source of parts for NASA's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA).[13] Meanwhile N911NA is being loaned out for display to the Joe Davies Heritage Airpark in Palmdale, California, beginning in September 2014.[14]

Shuttle Carrier N905NA was used to ferry the retired Shuttles to their respective museums. It returned to the Dryden Flight Research Facility at Edwards Air Force Base in California after a short flight from Los Angeles International Airport on September 24, 2012. It was intended to join N911NA as a source of spare parts for NASA's SOFIA aircraft.[13][15] NASA engineers surveyed N905NA and determined that it had few parts usable for SOFIA, and 905 is now intended to be preserved and displayed in Houston. Three former NASA aircraft are on static display in the Houston area - two T-38s at the front entrance of Space Center Houston, and the former NASA KC-135 930 Vomit Comet. In 2013, the Space Center announced plans to display SCA 905 with the mockup shuttle Independence mounted on its back.[16] NASA 905 was erected on site at the space center, having been dismantled and ferried in seven major pieces, (called The Big Move) from Ellington Field, and the replica shuttle was mounted in August 2014.[17]

The display called Independence Plaza opened to the public for the first time on January 23rd 2016.

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British Airways Boeing 747 -- robin, 00:02:16 02/06/16 Sat [1]

The Boeing 747 is a wide-body commercial jet airliner and cargo aircraft, often referred to by its original nickname, Jumbo Jet, or Queen of the Skies. Its distinctive "hump" upper deck along the forward part of the aircraft makes it among the world's most recognizable aircraft,[6] and it was the first wide-body produced. Manufactured by Boeing's Commercial Airplane unit in the United States, the original version of the 747 had two and a half times greater capacity than the Boeing 707,[7] one of the common large commercial aircraft of the 1960s. First flown commercially in 1970, the 747 held the passenger capacity record for 37 years.[8]

The four-engine 747 uses a double deck configuration for part of its length. It is available in passenger, freighter and other versions. Boeing designed the 747's hump-like upper deck to serve as a first class lounge or extra seating, and to allow the aircraft to be easily converted to a cargo carrier by removing seats and installing a front cargo door. Boeing did so because the company expected supersonic airliners (development of which was announced in the early 1960s) to render the 747 and other subsonic airliners obsolete, while the demand for subsonic cargo aircraft would be robust well into the future.[9] The 747 was expected to become obsolete after 400 were sold,[10] but it exceeded critics' expectations with production passing the 1,000 mark in 1993.[11] By January 2016, 1,520 aircraft had been built, with 19 of the 747-8 variants remaining on order.[4]

The 747-400, the most common passenger version in service, has a high-subsonic cruise speed of Mach 0.85–0.855 (up to 570 mph or 920 km/h) with an intercontinental range of 7,260 nautical miles (8,350 mi or 13,450 km).[12] The 747-400 passenger version can accommodate 416 passengers in a typical three-class layout, 524 passengers in a typical two-class layout, or 660 passengers in a high density one-class configuration.[13] The newest version of the aircraft, the 747-8, is in production and received certification in 2011. Deliveries of the 747-8F freighter version to launch customer Cargolux began in October 2011; deliveries of the 747-8I passenger version to Lufthansa began in May 2012. The 747 is to be replaced by the Boeing Y3 (part of the Boeing Yellowstone Project) in the future.


In 1963, the United States Air Force started a series of study projects on a very large strategic transport aircraft. Although the C-141 Starlifter was being introduced, they believed that a much larger and more capable aircraft was needed, especially the capability to carry outsized cargo that would not fit in any existing aircraft. These studies led to initial requirements for the CX-Heavy Logistics System (CX-HLS) in March 1964 for an aircraft with a load capacity of 180,000 pounds (81,600 kg) and a speed of Mach 0.75 (500 mph or 805 km/h), and an unrefueled range of 5,000 nautical miles (9,260 km) with a payload of 115,000 pounds (52,200 kg). The payload bay had to be 17 feet (5.18 m) wide by 13.5 feet (4.11 m) high and 100 feet (30.5 m) long with access through doors at the front and rear.[14]

Featuring only four engines, the design also required new engine designs with greatly increased power and better fuel economy. On May 18, 1964, airframe proposals arrived from Boeing, Douglas, General Dynamics, Lockheed and Martin Marietta; while engine proposals were submitted by General Electric, Curtiss-Wright, and Pratt & Whitney. After a downselect, Boeing, Douglas and Lockheed were given additional study contracts for the airframe, along with General Electric and Pratt & Whitney for the engines.[14]

All three of the airframe proposals shared a number of features. As the CX-HLS needed to be able to be loaded from the front, a door had to be included where the cockpit usually was. All of the companies solved this problem by moving the cockpit above the cargo area; Douglas had a small "pod" just forward and above the wing, Lockheed used a long "spine" running the length of the aircraft with the wing spar passing through it, while Boeing blended the two, with a longer pod that ran from just behind the nose to just behind the wing.[15] In 1965 Lockheed's aircraft design and General Electric's engine design were selected for the new C-5 Galaxy transport, which was the largest military aircraft in the world at the time.[14] The nose door and raised cockpit concepts would be carried over to the design of the 747.[16]
Airliner proposal

The 747 was conceived while air travel was increasing in the 1960s.[17] The era of commercial jet transportation, led by the enormous popularity of the Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8, had revolutionized long-distance travel.[17][18] Even before it lost the CX-HLS contract, Boeing was pressed by Juan Trippe, president of Pan American World Airways (Pan Am), one of their most important airline customers, to build a passenger aircraft more than twice the size of the 707. During this time, airport congestion, worsened by increasing numbers of passengers carried on relatively small aircraft, became a problem that Trippe thought could be addressed by a large new aircraft.[19]

In 1965, Joe Sutter was transferred from Boeing's 737 development team to manage the design studies for a new airliner, already assigned the model number 747.[20] Sutter initiated a design study with Pan Am and other airlines, to better understand their requirements. At the time, it was widely thought that the 747 would eventually be superseded by supersonic transport aircraft.[21] Boeing responded by designing the 747 so that it could be adapted easily to carry freight and remain in production even if sales of the passenger version declined. In the freighter role, the clear need was to support the containerized shipping methodologies that were being widely introduced at about the same time. Standard containers are 8 ft (2.4 m) square at the front (slightly higher due to attachment points) and available in 20 and 40 ft (6.1 and 12 m) lengths. This meant that it would be possible to support a 2-wide 2-high stack of containers two or three ranks deep with a fuselage size similar to the earlier CX-HLS project.

Design effort
Ultimately, the high-winged CX-HLS Boeing design was not used for the 747, although technologies developed for their bid had an influence.[25] The original design included a full-length double-deck fuselage with eight-across seating and two aisles on the lower deck and seven-across seating and two aisles on the upper deck.[26] However, concern over evacuation routes and limited cargo-carrying capability caused this idea to be scrapped in early 1966 in favor of a wider single deck design.[1] The cockpit was, therefore, placed on a shortened upper deck so that a freight-loading door could be included in the nose cone; this design feature produced the 747's distinctive "bulge".[27] In early models it was not clear what to do with the small space in the pod behind the cockpit, and this was initially specified as a "lounge" area with no permanent seating.
One of the principal technologies that enabled an aircraft as large as the 747 to be conceived was the high-bypass turbofan engine.[29] The engine technology was thought to be capable of delivering double the power of the earlier turbojets while consuming a third less fuel. General Electric had pioneered the concept but was committed to developing the engine for the C-5 Galaxy and did not enter the commercial market until later.[30][31] Pratt & Whitney was also working on the same principle and, by late 1966, Boeing, Pan Am and Pratt & Whitney agreed to develop a new engine, designated the JT9D to power the 747.[31]

The project was designed with a new methodology called fault tree analysis, which allowed the effects of a failure of a single part to be studied to determine its impact on other systems.[1] To address concerns about safety and flyability, the 747's design included structural redundancy, redundant hydraulic systems, quadruple main landing gear and dual control surfaces.[32] Additionally, some of the most advanced high-lift devices used in the industry were included in the new design, to allow it to operate from existing airports. These included slats running almost the entire length of the wing, as well as complex three-part slotted flaps along the trailing edge of the wing.[33] The wing's complex three-part flaps increase wing area by 21 percent and lift by 90 percent when fully deployed compared to their non-deployed configuration.[34]

Boeing agreed to deliver the first 747 to Pan Am by the end of 1969. The delivery date left 28 months to design the aircraft, which was two-thirds of the normal time.[35] The schedule was so fast paced that the people who worked on it were given the nickname "The Incredibles".[36] Developing the aircraft was such a technical and financial challenge that management was said to have "bet the company" when it started the project.

As Boeing did not have a plant large enough to assemble the giant airliner, they chose to build a new plant. The company considered locations in about 50 cities,[37] and eventually decided to build the new plant some 30 miles (50 km) north of Seattle on a site adjoining a military base at Paine Field near Everett, Washington.[38] It bought the 780-acre (3.2 km2) site in June 1966.[39]

Developing the 747 had been a major challenge, and building its assembly plant was also a huge undertaking. Boeing president William M. Allen asked Malcolm T. Stamper, then head of the company's turbine division, to oversee construction of the Everett factory and to start production of the 747.[40] To level the site, more than four million cubic yards (three million cubic meters) of earth had to be moved.[41] Time was so short that the 747's full-scale mock-up was built before the factory roof above it was finished.[42] The plant is the largest building by volume ever built, and has been substantially expanded several times to permit construction of other models of Boeing wide-body commercial jets.

Development and testing
Before the first 747 was fully assembled, testing began on many components and systems. One important test involved the evacuation of 560 volunteers from a cabin mock-up via the aircraft's emergency chutes. The first full-scale evacuation took two and a half minutes instead of the maximum of 90 seconds mandated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and several volunteers were injured. Subsequent test evacuations achieved the 90-second goal but caused more injuries. Most problematic was evacuation from the aircraft's upper deck; instead of using a conventional slide, volunteer passengers escaped by using a harness attached to a reel.[43] Tests also involved taxiing such a large aircraft. Boeing built an unusual training device known as "Waddell's Wagon" (named for a 747 test pilot, Jack Waddell) that consisted of a mock-up cockpit mounted on the roof of a truck. While the first 747s were still being built, the device allowed pilots to practise taxi maneuvers from a high upper-deck position.[44]

On September 30, 1968, the first 747 was rolled out of the Everett assembly building before the world's press and representatives of the 26 airlines that had ordered the airliner.[45] Over the following months, preparations were made for the first flight, which took place on February 9, 1969, with test pilots Jack Waddell and Brien Wygle at the controls[46][47] and Jess Wallick at the flight engineer's station. Despite a minor problem with one of the flaps, the flight confirmed that the 747 handled extremely well. The 747 was found to be largely immune to "Dutch roll", a phenomenon that had been a major hazard to the early swept-wing jets

During later stages of the flight test program, flutter testing showed that the wings suffered oscillation under certain conditions. This difficulty was partly solved by reducing the stiffness of some wing components. However, a particularly severe high-speed flutter problem was solved only by inserting depleted uranium counterweights as ballast in the outboard engine nacelles of the early 747s.[49] This measure caused anxiety when these aircraft crashed, as did China Airlines Flight 358 at Wanli in 1991 and El Al Flight 1862 at Amsterdam in 1992 which had 282 kilograms (622 lb) of uranium in the tailplane.[50][51]

The flight test program was hampered by problems with the 747's JT9D engines. Difficulties included engine stalls caused by rapid throttle movements and distortion of the turbine casings after a short period of service.[52] The problems delayed 747 deliveries for several months, up to 20 aircraft at the Everett plant were stranded while awaiting engine installation.[53] The program was further delayed when one of the five test aircraft suffered serious damage during a landing attempt at Renton Municipal Airport, site of the company's Renton factory. On December 13, 1969 a test aircraft was being taken to have test equipment removed and a cabin installed when pilot Ralph C. Cokely undershot the airport's short runway. The 747's right, outer landing gear was torn off and two engine nacelles were damaged.[54][55] However, these difficulties did not prevent Boeing from taking a test aircraft to the 28th Paris Air Show in mid-1969, where it was displayed to the public for the first time.[56] The 747 received its FAA airworthiness certificate in December 1969, clearing it for introduction into service.

The huge cost of developing the 747 and building the Everett factory meant that Boeing had to borrow heavily from a banking syndicate. During the final months before delivery of the first aircraft, the company had to repeatedly request additional funding to complete the project. Had this been refused, Boeing's survival would have been threatened.[23][58] The firm's debt exceeded $2 billion, with the $1.2 billion owed to the banks setting a record for all companies. Allen later said, "It was really too large a project for us."[59] Ultimately, the gamble succeeded, and Boeing held a monopoly in very large passenger aircraft production for many years.

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Illinois Senate career of Barack Obama -- robin, 23:56:48 02/05/16 Fri [1]

The Illinois Senate career of Barack Obama began in with the 1997 swearing in of Obama to his first term in the Illinois Senate and ended with his 2004 election to the United States Senate. During this part of his career, Obama continued teaching constitutional law part-time at the University of Chicago Law School as he had done as a Lecturer from 1992 to 1996 and as a Senior Lecturer from 1996–2008.[1][2][3]

In 1994, Senator Alice Palmer announced her desire to run for the United States House of Representatives, leaving the Senate's 13th district seat open. When filing opened in 1995 for her seat, Obama entered the race. Eventually, his challengers were disqualified and he won the Democratic primary unopposed in 1996. He won re-election in 1998 and 2002. During his Senate tenure, Obama was involved with a wide range of legislation. While serving, he ran unsuccessfully for the United States House of Representatives in the 2000 elections. In the redistricting following 2000 Census, the Democrats gained control of the Illinois Senate, and Obama became more active in his legislation, which included work in areas such as health care, labor, law enforcement, campaign finance reform, welfare, and community reinvestment.

First state Senate election, 1996

On November 21, 1994, Senator Alice Palmer, a Democrat of Chicago's South Shore neighborhood announced she was launching a campaign committee to raise funds to run in 1996 for the 2nd congressional district seat of indicted U.S. Representative Mel Reynolds, and suggested that 29-year-old Jesse Jackson, Jr. run for her 13th district Illinois Senate seat in 1996 instead of running against her for Congress.[4][5]

On June 27, 1995, Palmer announced she was running for Congress and would be giving up her Senate seat instead of running for re-election in 1996.[6] The following week, newspapers reported that Palmer-supporter Barack Obama of Hyde Park—who had been announced as chairman of the $49.2 million Chicago Annenberg Challenge on June 22 and whose memoir Dreams from My Father would be published on July 18—would announce he was running for Palmer's 13th district seat,[7][8] which was then a T-shaped district that spanned Chicago South Side neighborhoods from Hyde Park-Kenwood south through South Shore and from the lakefront west through Chicago Lawn.[9]

On September 11, 1995, Governor Jim Edgar set November 28 as the date for a special primary election to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Mel Reynolds following his August 1995 conviction.[10] On September 19, Obama announced his Illinois Senate candidacy to an audience of 200 supporters at the Ramada Inn Lakeshore in Hyde Park-Kenwood.[11] Palmer introduced and endorsed Obama as her successor to supporters that included 4th Ward Alderwoman Toni Preckwinkle of Hyde Park, newly elected 5th Ward Alderwoman Barbara Holt of Hyde Park, and state Representative Barbara Flynn Currie (D-25) of Hyde Park.[11]

On November 7, 1995, Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, died of metastatic uterine cancer at the age of 52 in Honolulu.[12] Obama arrived in Hawaii the following day, remained for his mother's memorial service and returned to Chicago soon after.[12] On November 28, after finishing a distant third in the special congressional primary election won by Jesse Jackson, Jr., a disappointed Palmer announced she wouldn't seek re-election and was undecided about again challenging Jackson in the March 1996 primary.[13][14]

On December 11, 1995—the first filing day for nominating petitions—Obama filed his nominating petitions with more than 3,000 signatures; perennially unsuccessful candidate Ulmer Lynch, Jr., also filed nominating petitions.[15] On December 18—the last filing day for nominating petitions—Palmer held a press conference to announce she was running for re-election to the Senate, accepting a draft by more than 100 supporters.[16] Palmer then drove to Springfield to file her nominating petitions; also filing nominating petitions on the last filing day were first-time candidates Gha-is Askia and Marc Ewell.[16] On December 26, Obama campaign volunteer Ron Davis filed objections to the legitimacy of the nominating petitions of Senator Palmer, Askia, Ewell and Lynch.[17][18]

On January 17, 1996, Palmer announced she was withdrawing her bid for re-election because she was around 200 signatures short of the 757 needed to earn a place on the ballot after almost two-thirds of the 1,580 signatures on her nominating petitions were found to be invalid.[18][19] The Chicago Board of Election Commissioners had previously sustained an objection to the nominating petitions of Lynch because of insufficient valid signatures and subsequently also sustained objections to the nominating petitions of Askia and Ewell because of insufficient valid signatures.[18][19]

Obama therefore won the Democratic nomination unopposed.[20] On November 5, Obama won the race for the 13th Senate district, with 82 percent of the vote; perennial unsuccessful Harold Washington Party candidate David Whitehead (13%) and first-time Republican Party candidate Rosette Caldwell Peyton (5%) also ran.[21]
Second state Senate election, 1998

Obama was up for reelection in 1998; Illinois state senators serve one two-year term and two four-year terms each decade. In the March 17 primary, Obama won re-nomination unopposed, and first-time candidate Yesse Yehudah won the Republican nomination unopposed.[22] At the November 3 general election, Obama was re-elected to a four-year term as state senator for the 13th district with 89% of the vote; Yehudah received 11% of the vote.[23]
Third state Senate election, 2002

Obama won both the March 19 Democratic primary election[24] and November 5, 2002 general election[25] for the newly configured 13th district unopposed.
Early Senate career

On January 8, 1997, Obama was sworn in as senator.[26] Early in his first term, the just-retired U.S. Senator Paul Simon contacted longtime Obama mentor, judge and former congressman Abner Mikva suggesting that Mikva recommend Obama to Emil Jones, Jr., the powerful Democratic leader of the state Senate. "Say, our friend Barack Obama has a chance to push this campaign finance bill through," Simon said in a telephone conversation, as recounted by Mikva in a 2008 interview, "Why don’t you call your friend Emil Jones and tell him how good he is." With Jones' support, Obama helped shepherd through a sweeping law that banned most gifts from lobbyists and personal use of campaign funds by state legislators.[27]

During his first years as a state senator, Obama was a co-sponsor of a bill that re-structured the Illinois welfare program into the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. He also helped get various pieces of legislation that established a $100 million Earned Income Tax Credit for working families, increased child care subsidies for low-income families, and required advance notice before mass layoffs and plant closings passed.[28]
Campaign for Bobby Rush's congressional seat
Main article: Illinois's 1st congressional district election, 2000

In September 1999, Obama and fellow Senator Donne Trotter (neither faced re-election that year) both announced their candidacies for the March 2000 Democratic primary election for the U.S. House of Representatives seat held by four-term incumbent candidate Bobby Rush. Rush had been badly defeated in the February 1999 Chicago mayoral election by Richard M. Daley—who won 45 percent of the African-American vote and even won Rush's own ward—and was thought to be vulnerable.[29] The support of some veteran Democratic fundraisers who saw Obama as a rising star, along with support of African-American entrepreneurs, helped him keep pace with Rush's fundraising in the district's most expensive race ever.[30]

During the campaign, Rush charged that Obama was not sufficiently rooted in Chicago's black neighborhoods to represent constituents' concerns, and also benefitted from an outpouring of sympathy when his son was shot to death shortly before the election.[29] Obama said Rush was a part of "a politics that is rooted in the past" and said he himself could build bridges with whites to get things done. But while Obama did well in his own Hyde Park base, he didn't get enough support from the surrounding black neighborhoods.[27] Starting with just 10 percent name recognition, Obama went on to get only 31 percent of the votes, losing by a more than 2-to-1 margin despite winning among white voters.[31][32][33][34]
Later Senate career

After losing the primary for U.S. Congress to Bobby Rush, Obama worked to repair relations with black politicians and clergy members, telling them he bore no grudges against the victor. He also became more responsive to requests for state funding, getting money for churches and community groups in his district. Senator Trotter, then the top Democrat on the Senate Appropriations Committee, said in 2008 that he knew Obama was responding more to funding requests "because the community groups in his district stopped coming to me".[27]

In September 2001, Democrats won a lottery to redraw legislative districts that had been drawn ten years earlier by Republicans and had helped ensure ten uninterrupted years of Republican control of the Illinois Senate.[35] At the November 2002 election, the Democratic remap helped them win control of the Illinois Senate and expand their majority in the Illinois House to work with the first Democratic Illinois governor in 26 years.[36][37] In January 2003, Obama became chairman of the Health and Human Services Committee, after six years on the committee and four years as its minority spokesman. The new Democratic majority allowed Obama to write and help pass more legislation than in previous years. He sponsored successful efforts to expand children's health care, create a plan to provide equal health care access for all Illinois residents, and create a "Hospital Report Card" system, and worker's rights laws that protected whistleblowers, domestic violence victims, equal pay for women, and overtime pay.[28] His most public accomplishment was a bill requiring police to videotape interrogations and confessions in potential death penalty cases. Obama was willing to listen to Republicans and police organizations and negotiate compromises to get the law passed.[38] That helped him develop a reputation as a pragmatist able to work with various sides of an issue.[27] Obama also led the passage of a law to monitor racial profiling by requiring police to record the race of drivers they stopped.[39][40]

In 2002, Obama introduced SB 1789 which would have adopted instant runoff voting (IRV) for congressional and state primary elections in Illinois and authorized IRV for local elections, although it did not ultimately pass.

He resigned from the Illinois Senate in November 2004 following his election to the U.S. Senate.

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Barack Obama -- robin, 23:54:29 02/05/16 Fri [1]

Barack Hussein Obama II (US Listeni/bəˈrɑːk huːˈseɪn oʊˈbɑːmə/;[1][2] born August 4, 1961) is an American politician currently serving as the 44th President of the United States, the first African American to hold the office. Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, Obama is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, where he served as president of the Harvard Law Review. He was a community organizer in Chicago before earning his law degree. He worked as a civil rights attorney and taught constitutional law at University of Chicago Law School between 1992 and 2004. He served three terms representing the 13th District in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004, running unsuccessfully for the United States House of Representatives in 2000 against Bobby Rush.

In 2004, Obama received national attention during his campaign to represent Illinois in the United States Senate with his victory in the March Democratic Party primary, his keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in July, and his election to the Senate in November. He began his presidential campaign in 2007 and, after a close primary campaign against Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2008, he won sufficient delegates in the Democratic Party primaries to receive the presidential nomination. He then defeated Republican nominee John McCain in the general election, and was inaugurated as president on January 20, 2009. Nine months after his inauguration, Obama was named the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

During his first two years in office, Obama signed into law economic stimulus legislation in response to the Great Recession in the form of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010. Other major domestic initiatives in his first term included the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, often referred to as "Obamacare"; the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act; and the Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010. In foreign policy, Obama ended U.S. military involvement in the Iraq War, increased U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan, signed the New START arms control treaty with Russia, ordered U.S. military involvement in Libya in opposition to Muammar Gaddafi, and ordered the military operation that resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden. In January 2011, the Republicans regained control of the House of Representatives as the Democratic Party lost a total of 63 seats; and, after a lengthy debate over federal spending and whether or not to raise the nation's debt limit, Obama signed the Budget Control Act of 2011 and the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012.

Obama was reelected president in November 2012, defeating Republican nominee Mitt Romney, and was sworn in for a second term on January 20, 2013. During his second term, Obama has promoted domestic policies related to gun control in response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, and has called for greater inclusiveness for LGBT Americans, while his administration has filed briefs which urged the Supreme Court to strike down part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act and state level same-sex marriage bans as unconstitutional. In foreign policy, Obama ordered U.S. military intervention in Iraq in response to gains made by the Islamic State after the 2011 withdrawal from Iraq, continued the process of ending U.S. combat operations in Afghanistan, spearheaded discussions that led to the 2015 Paris Agreement on global climate change, brokered a nuclear deal with Iran, and normalized U.S. relations with Cuba.

Early life and career
Main articles: Family of Barack Obama and Early life and career of Barack Obama

Obama was born on August 4, 1961,[3] at Kapiʻolani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital (now Kapiʻolani Medical Center for Women and Children) in Honolulu, Hawaii,[4][5][6] and would become the first President to have been born in Hawaii.[7] His mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, born in Wichita, Kansas, was of mostly English ancestry.[8] His father, Barack Obama, Sr., was a Luo from Nyang’oma Kogelo, Kenya. Obama's parents met in 1960 in a Russian language class at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, where his father was a foreign student on scholarship.[9][10] The couple married in Wailuku on Maui on February 2, 1961,[11][12] and separated when, in late August 1961, Obama's mother moved with their newborn son to attend the University of Washington in Seattle for a year. During that time, Obama, Sr. completed his undergraduate economics degree in Hawaii in June 1962, then left to attend graduate school at Harvard University on a scholarship. Obama's parents divorced in March 1964.[13] Obama Sr. returned to Kenya in 1964 where he remarried; he visited Barack in Hawaii only once, in 1971.[14] He died in an automobile accident in 1982, his son being 21 years old at that time.[15]

In 1963, Dunham met Lolo Soetoro, an Indonesian East–West Center graduate student in geography at the University of Hawaii, and the couple were married on Molokai on March 15, 1965.[16] After two one-year extensions of his J-1 visa, Lolo returned to Indonesia in 1966, followed sixteen months later by his wife and stepson in 1967, with the family initially living in a Menteng Dalam neighborhood in the Tebet subdistrict of south Jakarta, then from 1970 in a wealthier neighborhood in the Menteng subdistrict of central Jakarta.[17] From ages six to ten, Obama attended local Indonesian-language schools: St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School for two years and Besuki Public School for one and a half years, supplemented by English-language Calvert School homeschooling by his mother

Obama returned to Honolulu in 1971 to live with his maternal grandparents, Madelyn and Stanley Dunham, and with the aid of a scholarship attended Punahou School, a private college preparatory school, from fifth grade until his graduation from high school in 1979.[20] Obama lived with his mother and sister in Hawaii for three years from 1972 to 1975 while his mother was a graduate student in anthropology at the University of Hawaii.[21] Obama chose to stay in Hawaii with his grandparents for high school at Punahou when his mother and sister returned to Indonesia in 1975 so his mother could begin anthropology field work.[22] His mother spent most of the next two decades in Indonesia, divorcing Lolo in 1980 and earning a PhD degree in 1992, before dying in 1995 in Hawaii following treatment for ovarian cancer and uterine cancer.[23]

Of his early childhood, Obama recalled, "That my father looked nothing like the people around me—that he was black as pitch, my mother white as milk—barely registered in my mind."[10] He described his struggles as a young adult to reconcile social perceptions of his multiracial heritage.[24] Reflecting later on his years in Honolulu, Obama wrote: "The opportunity that Hawaii offered—to experience a variety of cultures in a climate of mutual respect—became an integral part of my world view, and a basis for the values that I hold most dear."[25] Obama has also written and talked about using alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine during his teenage years to "push questions of who I was out of my mind".[26] Obama was also a member of the "choom gang", a self-named group of friends that spent time together and occasionally smoked marijuana.[27][28]

After high school, Obama moved to Los Angeles in 1979 to attend Occidental College. In February 1981, Obama made his first public speech, calling for Occidental to participate in the disinvestment from South Africa in response to that nation's policy of apartheid.[29] In mid-1981, Obama traveled to Indonesia to visit his mother and half-sister Maya, and visited the families of college friends in Pakistan and India for three weeks.[29] Later in 1981, he transferred as a junior to Columbia College, Columbia University, in New York City, where he majored in political science with a specialty in international relations[30] and lived off-campus on West 109th Street.[31] He graduated with a BA degree in 1983 and worked for a year at the Business International Corporation,[32] then at the New York Public Interest Research Group.[33][34] In 1985, Obama was among the leaders of May Day efforts to bring attention to the New York City Subway system, which was in a bad condition at the time. Obama traveled to several subway stations to get people to sign letters addressed to local officials and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and was photographed at the City College subway station holding a sign protesting against the system's condition.[35]
Community organizer and Harvard Law School

Two years after graduating, Obama was hired in Chicago as director of the Developing Communities Project, a church-based community organization originally comprising eight Catholic parishes in Roseland, West Pullman, and Riverdale on Chicago's South Side. He worked there as a community organizer from June 1985 to May 1988.[34][36] He helped set up a job training program, a college preparatory tutoring program, and a tenants' rights organization in Altgeld Gardens.[37] Obama also worked as a consultant and instructor for the Gamaliel Foundation, a community organizing institute.[38] In mid-1988, he traveled for the first time in Europe for three weeks and then for five weeks in Kenya, where he met many of his paternal relatives for the first time.[39][40] He returned to Kenya in 1992 with his fiancée Michelle and his half-sister Auma,[39][41] and again in August 2006 for a visit to his father's birthplace, a village near Kisumu in rural western Kenya.[42]

Obama entered Harvard Law School in the fall of 1988. He was selected as an editor of the Harvard Law Review at the end of his first year,[43] president of the journal in his second year,[37][44] and research assistant to the constitutional scholar Laurence Tribe while at Harvard for two years.[45] During his summers, he returned to Chicago, where he worked as an associate at the law firms of Sidley Austin in 1989 and Hopkins & Sutter in 1990.[46] After graduating with a JD degree magna cum laude[47] from Harvard in 1991, he returned to Chicago.[43] Obama's election as the first black president of the Harvard Law Review gained national media attention[37][44] and led to a publishing contract and advance for a book about race relations,[48] which evolved into a personal memoir. The manuscript was published in mid-1995 as Dreams from My Father.[48]
University of Chicago Law School and civil rights attorney

In 1991, Obama accepted a two-year position as Visiting Law and Government Fellow at the University of Chicago Law School to work on his first book.[48][49] He then taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School for twelve years, first as a Lecturer from 1992 to 1996, and then as a Senior Lecturer from 1996 to 2004.[50]

From April to October 1992, Obama directed Illinois's Project Vote, a voter registration campaign with ten staffers and seven hundred volunteer registrars; it achieved its goal of registering 150,000 of 400,000 unregistered African Americans in the state, leading Crain's Chicago Business to name Obama to its 1993 list of "40 under Forty" powers to be.[51]

He joined Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland, a 13-attorney law firm specializing in civil rights litigation and neighborhood economic development, where he was an associate for three years from 1993 to 1996, then of counsel from 1996 to 2004. In 1994, he was listed as one of the lawyers in Buycks-Roberson v. Citibank Fed. Sav. Bank, 94 C 4094 (N.D. Ill.).[52] This class action lawsuit was filed in 1994 with Selma Buycks-Roberson as lead plaintiff and alleged that Citibank Federal Savings Bank had engaged in practices forbidden under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act and the Fair Housing Act.[53] The case was settled out of court.[54] Final Judgment was issued on May 13, 1998 with Citibank Federal Savings Bank agreeing to pay attorney fees.[55] His law license became inactive in 2007.[56][57]

From 1994 to 2002, Obama served on the boards of directors of the Woods Fund of Chicago, which in 1985 had been the first foundation to fund the Developing Communities Project, and of the Joyce Foundation.[34] He served on the board of directors of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge from 1995 to 2002, as founding president and chairman of the board of directors from 1995 to 1999.

Illinois State Senator (1997–2004)
Obama was elected to the Illinois Senate in 1996, succeeding Democratic State Senator Alice Palmer as Senator from Illinois's 13th District, which at that time spanned Chicago South Side neighborhoods from Hyde Park–Kenwood south to South Shore and west to Chicago Lawn.[58] Once elected, Obama gained bipartisan support for legislation that reformed ethics and health care laws.[59] He sponsored a law that increased tax credits for low-income workers, negotiated welfare reform, and promoted increased subsidies for childcare.[60] In 2001, as co-chairman of the bipartisan Joint Committee on Administrative Rules, Obama supported Republican Governor Ryan's payday loan regulations and predatory mortgage lending regulations aimed at averting home foreclosures.[61]

He was reelected to the Illinois Senate in 1998, defeating Republican Yesse Yehudah in the general election, and was reelected again in 2002.[62] In 2000, he lost a Democratic primary race for Illinois's 1st congressional district in the United States House of Representatives to four-term incumbent Bobby Rush by a margin of two to one.[63]

In January 2003, Obama became chairman of the Illinois Senate's Health and Human Services Committee when Democrats, after a decade in the minority, regained a majority.[64] He sponsored and led unanimous, bipartisan passage of legislation to monitor racial profiling by requiring police to record the race of drivers they detained, and legislation making Illinois the first state to mandate videotaping of homicide interrogations.[60][65] During his 2004 general election campaign for U.S. Senate, police representatives credited Obama for his active engagement with police organizations in enacting death penalty reforms.[66] Obama resigned from the Illinois Senate in November 2004 following his election to the U.S. Senate

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Alien vs. Predator -- robin, 23:49:46 02/05/16 Fri [1]

Alien vs. Predator (also known as Aliens vs. Predator, abbreviated AvP or AVP) is a science fiction horror franchise spanning several media. The series is a crossover between the Alien and Predator franchises. The franchise, which depicts the two species as being in conflict with one another, includes feature films, comics, novels, and computer/video games. There were also two Alien vs. Predator films produced, both critically panned and generally denounced by fans but relative box office successes, and the development of a third film has been rumored over several years.

[icon] This section requires expansion. (August 2013)

The first Alien vs. Predator story was published by Dark Horse Comics in Dark Horse Presents #34-36 (November 1989-February 1990). In November 1990, Predator 2 was released in theaters, and includes a scene depicting an Alien skull as one of the Predator's trophies. The first feature film was released in 2004 and was called Alien vs. Predator. The second film in the series was called Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem and was released in 2007.
Alien vs. Predator (2004)
Main article: Alien vs. Predator (film)

Set in 2004, this film follows a group of archaeologists assembled by billionaire Charles Bishop Weyland (Henriksen) for an expedition near the Antarctic to investigate a mysterious heat signal. Weyland hopes to claim the find for himself, and his group discovers a pyramid below the surface of a whaling station. Hieroglyphs and sculptures reveal that the pyramid is a hunting ground for Predators who kill Aliens as a rite of passage. The humans are caught in the middle of a battle between the two species and attempt to prevent the Aliens from reaching the surface.
Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (2007)
Main article: Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem

Following the events of Alien vs. Predator, a Predator ship is leaving Earth carrying Alien facehuggers, and the body of Scar, the Predator that defeated the Alien Queen. A chestburster erupts from Scar's body; it is a new creature that is a hybrid of both species. It quickly matures into an adult Predalien and starts killing all the Predators on the ship. A Predator's weapon fire punctures the hull and the ship crashes in the forest outside of Gunnison, Colorado.

The brothers Colin and Greg Strause were adamant that they wanted to develop Aliens vs. Predator 3 during the production of Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem. They essentially sought to make an AVP-film in space and set in the future, but by the time they were hired, 20th Century Fox had already decided to go with Salerno’s script set on Earth. They incorporated elements of their ideas into the second film, such as the Predator home planet. ADI duo Tom Woodruff and Alec Gillis were also contenders for the director’s chair. Having worked on the special effects in each movie since Aliens, Tom Woodruff revealed in April 2008 that he and Alec Gillis had aspirations to direct Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem themselves.[1][2]

In 2008, according to the horror news-website ShockTillYouDrop, “An anonymous source over at 20th Century Fox got in touch with us over the weekend to relay the news another Aliens vs. Predator sequel is a ‘certainty’ at this point. If you recall, the brothers Strause – who helmed the Christmas release Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem – stated Fox was going to take a ‘wait-and-see’ approach to a third chapter, furthermore, that the story would have to continue in space.”[3][4][5]

On September 21, 2008, Collider published an exclusive interview with John Davis (the producer of both AVP films) and he stated, "I think we’ve logically done what we could’ve done with the two AVP movies. But I think there’s something to go back to with Predator."[6]

On October 28, 2010, io9 published an exclusive interview with the Strause-brothers in which they revealed that Aliens vs. Predator 3 would have led directly into Alien. Greg Strause stated that, "The original ending for AVPR, that we pitched them, ended up on the alien homeward, and actually going from the Predator gun, that you see at the end, it was going to transition from that gun to a logo of a Weyland-Yutani spaceship that was heading to an alien planet. And then we were actually going to cut down to the surface [of the alien planet] and you were going to see a hunt going on. It was going to be a whole tribe of predators going against this creature that we called "King Alien." It's this huge giant winged alien thing. And that was going to be the lead-in, to show that the fact that the Predator gun [at the end of AVPR] is the impetus of all the technological advancements that allowed humans to travel in space. Which leads up to the Alien timeline."

When asked about the ending sequence of Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, that the Predator-weapon handed to Ms. Yutani would lead to us humans developing advanced space travel technology, Greg stated, "That was the idea. They never got any of the equipment from the first Predators. It's the first time they ever received any intact working technology left over. So they could take that and reverse engineer, figure out what the power source was - all of those things. And in theory, that would enable that company [Weyland-Yutani] to make massive advancements in technology and dominate the space industry. That was the whole idea, was to literally continue from Ms. Yutani getting the gun - and then cut to 50 years in the future, and there's spaceships now. We've made a quantum leap in space travel. That was going to set up the ending, which would then set up what AVP was going to be, which would take place 100 years in the future. That was kind of the plan."[7]

In 2012, What Culture stated that "surely sometime in the near future we will see a third attempt at an AvP movie" and listed five major reasons that would make a third sequel work - namely the inclusion of Colonial Marines, a strong lead character, no Predators teaming-up with humans, memorable action sequences, as well as a great director.[8]

In 2015, having worked on the special effects of Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, VFX make-up artist David Woodruff (the son of Tom Woodruff who worked on both the Alien- and Terminator-franchises) participated in an interview with TheTerminatorFans, and when asked about the situation of a third chapter in the AVP-trilogy, he stated, "I haven’t heard anything about a 3rd installment, not even rumors. This Neill Blomkamp project is the first possibility I’ve seen or heard of another Alien film and I’m all about it. I know the guys at Amalgamated Dynamics are pushing for something like this too. It’s time."[9]

Also in 2015, during the London Film and Comic-Con, Sigourney Weaver provided with yet another statement towards the AVP-franchise having supposedly "ruined the franchise" by stating that she asked to have Ripley killed in Alien 3 because she supposedly knew that Fox were moving forward with Alien vs. Predator.[10][11][12][13] This eventually motivated Peter Briggs (writer of Alien vs. Predator) to respond in an exclusive interview with Bloody Disgusting on July 22, 2015, with several objections to her statements and praising all films in the franchise (even stating that Alien 3 - Director's Cut was "more watchable" than Aliens) and reminding her that the AVP-films were even more successful than Weaver's last two Alien-films. He also particularly noted that "There’s a terrific “Alien vs Predator” movie still to be made by someone. It just hasn’t happened yet."[14][15][16][17][18][19] The A.V. Club in turn responded "Great, a Fox executive probably just read that and has decided to greenlight four new installments. Are you happy now, Briggs?"

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