Friday, March 4, 2011

World's most beautiful buildings

Take a tour of the world’s most beautiful buildings, from Kansas City to India.

By Karrie Jacobs
These are the world’s most beautiful buildings? Are you kidding?
A hundred years ago, naming the world’s most beautiful buildings was easy:
the Parthenon. Sure. The Taj Mahal. Absolutely. Hagia Sophia. No argument
. But now, in part because the whole notion was chewed up and spit out by 
those troublemaking Modernists, we’re just learning to think about architecture
 in terms of beauty again. It’s open season.
ICMC at Brandenburg Technical University, Cottbus, Germany
ICMC at Brandenburg Technical University,
Cottbus, Germany
Photo: Alex Korting

Certain themes are evident in our choices of the world’s most beautiful
 buildings. We love buildings surrounded by water; the interaction between
 water and daylight is always magical. (Why do you think the Lincoln Memorial
 has a reflecting pool at its doorstep?) And we are head over heels for 
flamboyant uses of pattern and color. The Netherlands Institute for Sound
 and Vision, for example, is positively psychedelic.

HDTVs: Now is a great time to buy!

If the recent TV promotions surrounding the Super Bowl didn't pull you off the sofa to shop for a shiny new HDTV, we have some great news: This is a terrific time to get a great deal on a new set.
Panasonic's 54-inch 3D plasma, model TC-P54VT25
Panasonic's 54-inch 3D plasma TV,
model TC-P54VT25
That's because it's the time of year when manufacturers and retailers are looking to clear out inventories of last year's models to make way for the new 2011 sets, which should start arriving next month. And lowering prices has typically been the most effective way to drive sales. Even better, unlike many other promotional sales events, such as Black Friday, where the focus is often on off-brand TVs or stripped-to-the-bone models, this is a great opportunity to get a TV loaded with features, including 3D, Internet connectivity, and in the case of LCD sets, LED backlights and 240Hz technology., for one, appears to be particularly aggressive with sales on sets from top brands. For example, we found numerous deals on 2010 Panasonic TV sets, ranging from a 22-inch LCD set for $180 to a 54-inch flagship 3D plasma at less than $2,200. There are also deals on sets from LGSamsungSony and Toshiba, among others.

Dancer's hilarious celebration a Web hit

Earlier this year, the University of Memphis spirit squad won the national championship in hip-hop dance. Captain Marina Barrett was understandably excited about the achievement, as she demonstrated by celebrating with an uncontrollable thrashing dance when the announcement was made. 
The video quality is subpar and the guys filming it are laughing in the background. It's such a hilarious clip that neither of those things matter:
On an episode of "Seinfeld," it was said that Elaine's dancing looked like a full-bodied dry heave set to music. That's an apt description of this. Multiple viewings of the clip make it even funnier, but my favorite part is how quickly Ms. Barrett composes herself for the ESPN interview. She goes from wild flailing to calm manner in an instant.

Encroachers gobble up Atir Khal

An NGO team in a visit yesterday found grabbers have been filling the whole Atir Khal (canal) and its adjoining vast wetlands in Basila of the city.
The team of Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (Bapa) also found Dumini canal in Khilkhet is being filled and narrowed at many points for different housing projects.
Bapa general secretary Abdul Matin led the team during its visit to the two canals and the river Turag from 10:00am to 2:00pm to inspect the water bodies' present condition.

The team discovered Atir Khal is almost dead due to unabated earth filling that has been going on in violation of wetland and open space protection act 2000.
Bapa team later inspected the Turag river from Amin Bazar to Tongi Bridge and found a vast portions of the river in Amin Bazar have been encroached by sand traders.
The bridges from Amin Bazar to Tongi except Amin Bazar Bridge were also found too low, which will hinder movement of water transports in the circular waterway.

Crushing blow to Tigers' hopes

Bangladesh relived their past batting horrors to crash to a nine-wicket defeat to West Indies and dent their quarterfinals hopes.
In a bizarre game that lasted only 31.1 overs, the disciplined West Indians blew away Bangladesh to 58 in just 18.5 overs--their lowest-ever total in ODIs.
Bangladesh cricket

It is also the lowest total ever made by a Full ICC Member nation in World Cup.
The Caribbeans knocked off 58 in 12.2 overs in the crucial Group B clash at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Mirpur.

US deeply troubled by Yunus’ removal

Foreign diplomats in Bangladesh have sharply reacted to the government's move to remove Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus from Grameen Bank and none of them took it positively.
They said they never thought that the government could make such an extreme move against an internationally reputed personality like Yunus.
US Ambassador to Bangladesh in Dhaka James Moriarty yesterday said the United States is deeply troubled by the government removing Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus from the office of the managing director of Grameen Bank and termed it "an unusual way to handle a Nobel Laureate".
"We are deeply troubled by the process here by this letter going forward trying to remove the professor [Yunus]," he told the journalists emerging from a meeting between diplomatic corps, development partners and the finance minister at Bangladesh Secretariat yesterday.

Kaspersky setting the pace

Even a couple of years back Harry Cheung, managing director of Kaspersky Lab Asia-Pacific, one of the world's top four leading IT security software companies, didn't really care about Bangladesh market. But for the past two years when he saw the figures grow it amazed him and right now to them it is one of the main countries in South Asia other than India.
Cheung admitted this during an exclusive interview with The Daily Star few days back when he flew down to Dhaka for the first time during a corporate product launch.
Kaspersky has been present in Bangladesh for the past three years and so far for the past two and half years or so Cheung has seen a phenomenal growth in this market and according to him the numbers kept on jumping and the growth rate was very close to 100 per cent a year. He gave the credit to their partner Office Extracts, sole distributor for Bangladesh and Bhutan, who have been doing a very good job in this market.

Diesel electric train to be introduced in satellite towns of capital, port city by 2014

The government has taken an initiative to launch Diesel Electric Multiple Unit (DEMU) train in a bid to reduce traffic congestion as well as to serve the commuters residing in and around the capital and the port city of Chittagong.
With this objective, the government will procure 20 sets (3 units in one set) DEMU train through which at least 6,000 commuters will be able to travel at a time. The DEMU train routes will be Dhaka-Gazipur, Dhaka-Narayanganj, Dhaka-Narsingdi and Chittagong-Feni.
The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) has recently approved a project titled `Procurement of 20 sets (3 unit in one set) DEMU’ at a cost of Tk 654.42 crore to be entirely borne from the government exchequer. The project is expected to be completed by June 2014.
Of the total project cost, an allocation of Tk 51.70 crore has been earmarked for the current fiscal, Tk 14.44 crore for 2011-12 fiscal, Tk 585.30 crore for 2012-13 fiscal and Tk 2.97 crore for the 2013-14 fiscal.
According to sources at the Bangladesh Railway, the DEMU is a modern and fast train communication system which will unveil a new era in the country’s rail communication. Once introduced, it is expected to reduce the traffic congestions of the satellite towns of Dhaka and Chittagong to some extent.