Russia Plans to Build Space Hotel

A Russian company today announced plans to launch a comfortable space hotel for tourists in the next six years.

Orbital Technologies said Wednesday that the proposed Commercial Space Station (CSS) will offer an alternative to non-astronauts who until now have been limited to visiting the International Space station (ISS).

The company plans to launch the first module of the hotel in 2015-16. It will measure just 20 cubic meters and have four cabins, designed for up to seven passengers, who would go into orbit using the Soyuz shuttle.

“Our planned module inside will not remind you of the ISS. A hotel should be comfortable inside, and it will be possible to look at the Earth through large portholes,” chief executive Sergei Kostenko said, calling it a “cosmic hotel”.

Orbital Technologies is teaming up with state-run Rocket and Space Corporation Energia as well as Russian space agency Roscosmos for the project.

Titanic Star Gloria Stuart Dies

Hollywood actress Gloria Stuart, who earned an Oscar nomination for her portrayal of the elder version of Kate Winslet’s character Rose in “Titanic,” has died. She was 100 years old.

Her daughter, Sylvia Thompson, told the Los Angeles Times that Stuart died yesterday in her home in Los Angeles. She was diagnosed with breast cancer some five years ago, but had survived the disease.

“She just paid no attention to illness. She was a very strong woman and had other fish to fry,” Thompson said.

The actress was 87 when she was nominated for the best supporting actress Oscar for her work in the epic shipboard romance. Stuart was the oldest performer to have been nominated for an Academy Award.

In her 1999 autobiography, Gloria Stuart: I Just Kept Hoping, she wrote about the part that, “I knew the role I had wanted and waited for all these many years had arrived!”

Stuart was born July 4, 1910 in Santa Monica, California.

University of New Mexico sues Intel

The University of New Mexico lawsuit claims the microprocessor giant infringed on the school’s patented double-patterning lithography used in chip manufacturing.

Chip makers around the world have sought new ways to manufacture chips as the transistors and other components on them become smaller to fit into smaller devices.

Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy confirms the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company has received the complaint but says there won’t be any immediate comment.

The president and chief executive of the university’s technology transfer division, Lisa Kuuttila (KOO-too-lah), says the research developed at the university in Albuquerque has helped the semiconductor industry build circuits that feature smaller and faster semiconductors.

The University of New Mexico’s patent arm, STC, said it was “reluctant” to turn to the courts to settle this issue, but did so after contacting Intel and coming to the conclusion they had “no other recourse.”

A New Digital Signage Technology


A new product called The Eco-Flight Board provides hotels, airports, conference centers, convention centers, and other venues located near airports a direct feed of flight departures that are displayed on LCD screens for easy viewing.

Eco-Flight Board technology uses a non-PC-based player that uses less than four watts of power per screen. This amounts to a savings of approximately $250 per screen per year over standard PC technology.

Also, since the Eco-Flight Board is a non-PC technology it is low maintenance, easy to install and it eliminates excessive wires, unsightly boxes and ventilation worries.

“This is an economical way of providing flight information that saves money and is low-maintenance,” says Andrew Hoffman, VP at Noventri, a digital signage company located in Maryland.

overstockArt.com Announces its Premiere Cyber Monday Promotion


The popular online gallery, overstockArt.com, is excited to kick-off the holiday shopping season with its premiere Cyber Monday promotion. The incredible deals they will offer on one of the biggest online shopping days of the year include virtual door-busters and an early bird special offering consumers a chance to save 50% off their entire purchase both a first for this innovative wall art retailer.

overstockArt.com offers the most comprehensive selection of hand painted art reproductions in the online oil painting industry, with more than 100,000 decorating combinations, including works by Van Gogh, Monet, Picasso, Renoir, Klimt, O’Keeffe, Munch, Dali and much more.

The Cyber Monday specials overstockArt.com will be offering on November 29, 2010 include:

*  Early Bird Special: 50% oil paintings from 1:01 a.m. CST 12 p.m. CST using the coupon code CyberMondayEarlyBird.

*  After that, 40% off oil paintings until 11:59 p.m. CST using the coupon code CyberMonday.

*  Virtual door-buster: five (5) framed 20″ x 24″ hand painted canvases of Vincent van Gogh’s bestselling masterpiece Starry Night will be available to purchase for a 60% off.

The online art gallery, which considers itself as a wall art industry innovator, plans to kick-start Cyber Monday with a bang. In 2005, the National Retailer Federation’s (NRF) Shop.org division coined the term based on a clear consumer trend that retailers began to recognize in 2003 and 2004.

According to NRF 96.5 million shopped online on Cyber Monday last year. overstockArt.com Founder and CEO David Sasson feels optimistic that this year will see even more shoppers, “With the current economic turbulence, we hope that shoppers will continue to go online for great value and a user-friendly shopping experience. We are excited to kick-off our busiest sales time of the year with incredible discounts, deals and savings for all customers this Cyber Monday.”

China takes the Pole position in Brit Test


The Chinese know more about life and culture in the UK than the British according to new research. Similar research two years ago placed Poland in the top spot, however they have been overtaken.

The news comes as the Home Office celebrates the fifth anniversary of the test this month. The pass mark is 18 for the test, and the Chinese scored an impressive 19.01, on average. Poland, meanwhile, plummeted to 29th place.

The Philippines and Jamaica came second and third, respectively. British born citizens achieved a dismal ranking of 40th with 15.14, although this was an improvement on Germany’s 43rd and France’s 46th.

Iran and Iraq both passed on average, and even Afghanistan scored 15.54 – a clear half a mark ahead of the British. Some continuity was preserved in that the US remain at the bottom of the table, although Argentina took last place.

The multiple-choice exam was based on the Home Office’s ‘Life in the UK Test’; questions included ‘When is the national day for England?’ (23rd April) and ‘What is the largest ethnic minority in Britain?’ (Indian).

George Sandison, Managing Editor of Red Squirrel Publishing, which carried out the test, said: ‘This shows the test is far from straightforward and the average Brit would fail.’

‘But these figures also reflect people who haven’t studied for the test and with effective study a pass is achievable.’ Sandison said.

Russell Brand Charged In Paparazzi Scuffle

Russell Brand is facing an assault charge after his arrest for attacking a paparazzi photographer at Los Angeles International airport on Friday.

And shortly after the incident, his fiancee Katy Perry offered an insight into what might have caused the ruckus.

She tweeted: “If you cross the line & try an put a lens up my dress, my fiance will do his job & protect me.”

The British comedian was handed the misdemeanour charge of ‘simple battery’ following the incident, where he is alleged to have pushed a photographer taking pictures of him and his fiancee, pop star Katy Perry. It is thought the incident started after photographers were blocking Perry and Brand’s path and stopping them from getting on their flight.

Police confirmed that Brand had been taken into custody for a misdemeanor charge of simple battery with bail set at $20,000.

The True Story of Kenneth Horrigan, World War II POW in Stalag 17B


They have been referred to as the “Greatest Generation.” They are the men and women of World War II and their stories need to be told. Kenneth Horrigan was only 19 years old when he was captured by the enemy.

Written with fluency and eloquence in powerful first person narration, this intense book chronicles the life of a young soldier and his experiences as a POW, not only the suffering he endured, but the ways in which he knew it affected his loved ones. It contains never-before-published historical documents that give proof, honor and respect to this American soldier and how he served his country.

Horrigan recounts his experiences of being interrogated relentlessly by the Germans; suffering unimaginable emotional and physical distress, including persistent hunger and solitary confinement; as well as the sights, sounds and smells of war that no soldier will ever forget. Upon his return home, Horrigan was rebuked by the Veterans Administration and for years remained untreated for the emotional scars he suffered at the hands of the enemy and which he carried with him for his entire life.

Horrigan’s book is a historic tribute to the American soldier and their families. Even more, Horrigan’s story gives veterans, who may be rebuked by the VA upon their return from deployment, hope. Sixty years after his return home from the ravages of war, he received full VA benefits. He is held in the highest regard by his family, his colleagues and his country.

Jennifer Lopez Gets $16m for American Idol

The singer-and-actress has been in negotiations with show bosses about joining the panel following the departures of Simon Cowell, Ellen DeGeneres and Kara DioGuardi.

Lopez has reportedly agreed a $16 million deal to be a judge on American Idol.

An insider said: “She was angling for an overall deal at Fox, including a put picture, to keep her movie career going. But Fox said no.”

A source revealed: “I think it was just positioning. In the end, she didn’t turn up her nose up at $16 million.”

The 41-year-old star, who was dropped by her record label Sony Music Epic Records last year, has also allegedly asked American Idol bosses to delay announcing the new judging line-up until later this month to coincide with the release of her new single, her first release on Island Def Jam.

Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler is also believed to be joining Lopez on the panel.

London Prostitution Ring Busted

Three women and a man have been jailed for trying to sell the virginity of young girls to wealthy Arab businessmen for up to £150,000.

They offered girls aged between 14 and 20 for sex, some of whom could be “broken” by the client. The gang told undercover police officers they could provide women from Iran, England and Eastern Europe.

The Metropolitan Police learned of the plot after the gang had offered their services in a handwritten letter to the Jumeirah Carlton Hotel in Knightsbridge, central London.

Detective Chief Superintendent Richard Martin said: “It is thanks to diligence of the hotel staff in the Jumeirah Carlton Hotel that this ruthless gang was caught.

Defendants Mahrookh Jamali, 41, of West End Lane, Kilburn, north London; Sara Bordbar, of Finchley Road, north London; and husband and wife Fatima Hagnegat, 24, and Rasoul Gholampour, 30, of Redbrook Road, Wigan, pleaded guilty to conspiring to traffic six women aged between 17 and 22 from the North West to London between July and October last year for sexual exploitation.