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Putin voices optimism on economy, ruble

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




In annual year-end news conference, Russia’s president also strikes somewhat conciliatory chord on Ukraine


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Putin voices optimism on economy, ruble

Apple CEO Tim Cook Sent This Inspiring Memo To Employees For The Holidays (AAPL)

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments



Apple CEO Tim Cook sent a lengthy email to employees thanking them for their hard work throughout the year. 

The letter, which was first published by blog iClarified (via 9to5Mac), highlights some of Apple’s biggest accomplishments this year, including the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus launch, the Mac’s 30th anniversary, and the Apple Watch unveil.

Apple also notes it donated $20 million this quarter to Product Red, a campaign dedicated to fighting AIDs in Africa.

But one of the most notable parts of the memo were Cook’s words when it came to thanking employees.

“Most customers will never know how hard you and your colleagues are working to make it a reality,” Cook wrote in the memo. “But they will appreciate the depth of care and effort behind Apple Watch from the moment they put it on their wrist. People love Apple products, which means they love the work you do.” 

Here’s the full memo:

Team,

With the holidays upon us and 2014 drawing to a close, it’s a great time to look back at this unforgettable year. Together we have reached new heights with our products and delivered Apple’s most innovative lineup ever. I’m immensely proud of the work that you and your teams are doing to make Apple a force for good in the world, both through our products and by making a difference on issues that touch millions of lives.

It’s been a year of amazing announcements across the board. Just this fall we had the biggest iPhone launch ever with iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, unveiled the thinner and more powerful iPad Air 2, introduced the new 27-inch iMac with its stunning Retina 5K display, and launched an entirely new category of service — Apple Pay — which is winning over banks, merchants and customers even faster than we had hoped. The App Store had a record-setting year and our software products, led by iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, have never been stronger. During this busy holiday season, our store teams are doing a fantastic job introducing and answering questions about all of our products, and they’re doing it with the energy and enthusiasm that has always endeared them to our customers.

This year marked the 30th anniversary of the Mac, which has been the symbol of revolutionary technology since its introduction. Today, the Mac enjoys a wider audience than ever and the highest market share in almost 20 years. This achievement is a credit to our teams who are constantly innovating to make Apple’s products the best in the world. Year after year, the Mac gets better because we love it and we can’t stop thinking about the possibilities for what it can do.

We’ve made important decisions like acquiring Beats for its popular products and incomparable talent, and partnering with IBM to transform mobile computing in the enterprise. Each of these moves opens new opportunities for Apple, and their impact will continue to be felt far into our future.

Together we’re also making an impact on some of the most important issues facing society. Here in the U.S., we’ve made a bold commitment to provide technology for schools that need it the most. Apple is a leader in sustainability, powering our data centers with 100% renewable energy. The success of our company is creating jobs and opportunities for workers from all walks of life. We’re dedicated to advancing equality, diversity and human rights in the workplace, from our corporate offices to the factory floor. And we’re defending our customers’ personal data because we believe they have not just an expectation but a right to privacy.

As the holiday shopping season kicked off in November, we teamed up with some of the most popular developers on the App Store for an unprecedented fundraising effort on behalf of (PRODUCT) RED. Developers created exclusive content for the campaign, with all proceeds going to the Global Fund to fight AIDS in Africa. In addition, Apple pledged a portion of our retail and online sales on two of the busiest shopping days of the year.

I’m thrilled to announce that our total donation for this quarter will be more than $20 million — our biggest ever — bringing the total amount Apple has raised for (PRODUCT) RED to over $100 million. The money we’ve raised is saving lives and bringing hope to people in need. It’s a cause we can all be proud to support.

In September, we gave a glimpse of the future with Apple Watch, our most personal device ever. Most customers will never know how hard you and your colleagues are working to make it a reality, but they will appreciate the depth of care and effort behind Apple Watch from the moment they put it on their wrist. People love Apple products, which means they love the work you do. The knowledge that you’ve done something great for someone else is a powerful reward — one which I hope you feel during the holiday season and throughout the year. There’s nothing else quite like it.

Enjoy this time with your friends and loved ones. I could not be more excited about what’s in store for next year, and for the opportunity to work with all of you to make it happen.

Tim

SEE ALSO: Here’s The Simple Yet Brilliant Challenge Steve Jobs Posed To Employees In Product Meetings

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Apple CEO Tim Cook Sent This Inspiring Memo To Employees For The Holidays (AAPL)

This Volunteer Has An Incredible Reaction When Ludacris Surprises Her With A New Car

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments



This video is sponsored by Acura.

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Most people know Chris “Ludacris” Bridges as a Grammy-winning recording artist and actor in the “Fast and Furious” franchise, among other movies. But he’s also a philanthropist and entrepreneur, having started The Ludacris Foundation — based in his hometown of Atlanta — to help people in need.

The Ludacris Foundation gets a lot of support from volunteers like Kellie Hutchens, a woman who once struggled but has since turned her life around. Bridges and Roberta Shields, president of The Ludacris Foundation (who happens to be Bridges’ mom), decided there was no volunteer more deserving of a reward, and so they teamed up with Acura to give Hutchens an amazing gift: an all-new 2015 Acura TLX.

Watch the video above to see Bridges surprise Hutchens with the car (and trust us, she was really surprised) and to find out more about The Ludacris Foundation and what it does.

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SEE ALSO: Above And Beyond

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This Volunteer Has An Incredible Reaction When Ludacris Surprises Her With A New Car

Does Hollywood try to have it both ways regarding torture?

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




From “Homeland,” “24” and “Hostel” to “Sons of Anarchy,” “Zero Dark Thirty,” “Django Unchained” and “The Deer Hunter,” Hollywood has long used intense torture scenes as a means of entertainment.

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Does Hollywood try to have it both ways regarding torture?

Expert: ’90 percent’ sure North Korea behind cyberattack on Sony

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Leading North Korea expert Andrei Lankov tells Fox News he is “90 percent sure” Pyongyang was behind the hacking attack on Sony for its production of “The Interview.”

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Expert: ’90 percent’ sure North Korea behind cyberattack on Sony

Divided reaction in Miami to breakthrough in U.S.-Cuba relations

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Feelings mixed among Cubans and Cuban-Americans in Little Havana, ranging from anger and betrayal to cautious optimism


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Divided reaction in Miami to breakthrough in U.S.-Cuba relations

American Horror Story Freak Show Episode 10 Watch: The Depressing Story Of Pepper

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Instead of seeing Dandy wax proudly and bare-assedly about being a god among men, we got to witness the unspeakably horrendous life story of Pepper the Pinhead. Cue the violin submersing itself in termites.

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American Horror Story Freak Show Episode 10 Watch: The Depressing Story Of Pepper

Will the U.S.-Cuba policy shift mean access to Cuban cigars?

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Wednesday’s move to normalize relations with the island means Americans may soon have access to the banned stogies


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Will the U.S.-Cuba policy shift mean access to Cuban cigars?

Ascension Night Three Watch: The More Things Change, The More People Die

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Ascension came to a close tonight with Night Three. Is there enough fuel to keep this ship going into another season, or should the crew turn around and head back to Earth? Read on, and see for yourself.

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Ascension Night Three Watch: The More Things Change, The More People Die

Scott Pelley reports from Cuba on groundbreaking diplomatic shift

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Scott Pelley reports from Cuba on groundbreaking diplomatic shift

Eric Church’s Grammy-nominated album ‘The Outsiders’ goes Platinum

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Eric Church‘s Grammy-nominated ‘The Outsiders’ album has gone Platinum for one million in sales. It’s an accomplishment very few artists can claim in 2014. In fact, only two country artists released albums this year andhit the one million mark.

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Eric Church’s Grammy-nominated album ‘The Outsiders’ goes Platinum

Report: Selena Gomez still pining over Justin Bieber

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




How awkward.

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Report: Selena Gomez still pining over Justin Bieber

Third parent in IVF cases will not be named

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




The divisive technique means babies would have a father and two genetic mothers, the second of which would donate just 0.1 per cent of her DNA and so remain anonymous.

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Third parent in IVF cases will not be named

Are apprenticeships best? Graduates faced with high student debt and poor earning prospects would…

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Pupils would be better off choosing an apprenticeship because of the high student debt and poor earning prospects of some university courses, research by the Sutton Trust has claimed.

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Are apprenticeships best? Graduates faced with high student debt and poor earning prospects would…

Will you be able to travel to Cuba soon?

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Will you be able to travel to Cuba soon?

Internet gift not arrived? Pity the drivers paid just 45p to deliver it with no sick pay, pension…

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Thousands of delivery workers are now self-employed ‘lifestyle couriers’ including Sarah, 45, who makes £6.50 an hour but says: ‘It’s this or living on benefits’.

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Internet gift not arrived? Pity the drivers paid just 45p to deliver it with no sick pay, pension…

North Korea connected to Sony attack as company cancels Dec. 25 release of ‘The Interview’

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




The FBI has connected North Korea  to the Sony Pictures cyberattack, a federal law enforcement source told Fox News Wednesday, hours after the company announced it had scrapped the Dec. 25 release of “The Interview” after a number of major movie chains said they would not show the film.

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North Korea connected to Sony attack as company cancels Dec. 25 release of ‘The Interview’

Flash Points: How will Pakistan respond to Taliban school massacre?

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Flash Points: How will Pakistan respond to Taliban school massacre?

Out of captivity in Cuba, ex-prisoner breathes freedom

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Out of captivity in Cuba, ex-prisoner breathes freedom

Russia’s future with Cuba uncertain after new U.S.-Cuba policy

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Russia’s future with Cuba uncertain after new U.S.-Cuba policy

Why Ray Palmer Will End Up Being An Incredibly Important Character On Arrow

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Ray Palmer has already proved to be an interesting character this season on Arrow, and judging by the path the writers seem to be setting up for him, he just might become one of the most important individuals on the show.

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Why Ray Palmer Will End Up Being An Incredibly Important Character On Arrow

How HBO Is Completely Changing The Way We View Their Ratings

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Everything about television has changed in the last decade, from the size of the screen to the plethora of new avenues for original programming. Well, it turns out the way ratings are accumulated may be changing too, now that trendsetter HBO is flipping things around.

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How HBO Is Completely Changing The Way We View Their Ratings

Sony Pictures Employees Now Working In An Office “From Ten Years Ago”

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Sony Pictures Employees Now Working In An Office “From Ten Years Ago”

The Interview Will Not Get A VOD Release From Sony

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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The Interview Will Not Get A VOD Release From Sony

Flash Points: How will restoring diplomatic ties with Cuba affect the U.S. economy?

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




CBS News senior national security analyst Juan Zarate breaks down America’s move to open diplomatic relations with Cuba, and what may occur as a result.


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Flash Points: How will restoring diplomatic ties with Cuba affect the U.S. economy?

The ‘drunk tank’ helping boozy Britons recover this Christmas: First of ten mobile ‘alcohol…

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




The Alcohol Recovery Centre (ARC) unveiled in Bristol yesterday is a state-of-the-art medical facility to take care of drunkards instead of them being sent to A&E or police cells.

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The ‘drunk tank’ helping boozy Britons recover this Christmas: First of ten mobile ‘alcohol…

Why GTA 5’s Online Heists Are Taking So Long

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Why GTA 5’s Online Heists Are Taking So Long

Steve Carell’s New Movie Just Got Cancelled Because Of North Korea

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments





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Steve Carell’s New Movie Just Got Cancelled Because Of North Korea

Beauty of Cuba revealed in photographs

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Photographer Michael Petit shared with CBS News the photos he took during his visits to the island nation


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Beauty of Cuba revealed in photographs

Eau de Britney and Beyonce outsells the big perfume brands

| December 18, 2014 | 0 Comments




Celebrities are making their fortunes selling perfume as it emerged that fragrances by Britney Spears, Beyoncé, and Cheryl Fernandez-Versini are outselling established brands.

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Eau de Britney and Beyonce outsells the big perfume brands