Thursday, June 10, 2010

American Teen Possibly Stranded in the Indian Ocean

According to,
Abby Sunderland, 16, of California sent out a distress signal over the Indian Ocean thursday. The teen was attempting to sail around the world without stopping. The teen has been out at sea since January and already has had to make two stops in Cape Town, South Africa in April. Recent electronic signals have been captured saying Sunderland's ship was traveling at about one mile per hour, meaning it was floating, not sailing. Her family states that she has all the nescessary equipment to survive a crisis situation like this, and Australian rescue ships are only two days away from reaching the teen. Her family also believes she is a very capable sailor, and are keeping in positive spirits.

New ideas to help the gulf pour in

As the BP Oil spill worsens, more and more people offer their support with different ideas on how to clean up the oil and prevent any more from gushing out. BP has a crew of 40 people who inspect the more than 80,000 plans. Of this, about 250 have reached the "final assessment stage," as company spokesperson, Mark Proegler, called it. 60% of this plans focus on plugging the leak rather than cleaning up the oil which has already gushed out.

One of these plans to plug the leak comes from Bill Horne. Horne is an 85-year-old engineer, he suggests essentially vacuuming up all the oil. He suggests using a large tube running from the bottom of a fireboat.

Kevin Costner, famed Hollywood actor, proposed his own idea as well. On Wednesday he testified to Capitol hill about how effective his product was. His product, which costed $20 million, involves purifying the water and separating it from the oil.

James Cameron, Hollywood director and deep sea explorer, offered his help as well. BP denied his offer though, resulting in them being called, "Morons" by Cameron.

It is unknown which methods will be pursued, or what effect the pursued plans will have. Hopefully whatever is done, it will save the gulf and its wildlife from much unneeded death.

Source: USA Today

NASA plans for more commercial flights

Gregory Olsen, a millionare and the third person to take a commercial trip into space, says he 's excited about the future of commercial space travel. Olsen bought his ticket at $20 million and ventured into space with Russian Federal Space Agency through the Virginia-based firm Space Adventures. Olsen says the experience was life changing and never goes a day without thinking about it.

President Obama has proposed a plan where commercial companies could focus on low-Earth orbit trips. Meanwhile, the space agency could focus on making trips to asteroids and Mars. NASA is currently experimenting with un-manned shuttles that are being sent into orbit. The company plans to modify the sattelites one day in order to carry people.

"When you fly over the Earth, there's no sign of life," Olsen said. "There's nothing to indicate that there's anything going on there – occasional jet trails, but other than that it just looks serene, perfect. When I was up there I just said, 'Wow, I'm the luckiest guy in the world to be able to see this.'" Hopefully one day soon more people will be able to experience what Olsen did.

Source: Yahoo News

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

US Boarder patrol angers Mexicans

An American Border Patrol Agent said he was defending himself when he shot 15-year-old Sergio Adrian Hernandez Huereka, a Mexican, last Monday. The boy's family mourned over his death on Tuesday. Adding to their discontent is the fact that the boy was shot on the Mexican side of the Rio Grande which divides The United States and Mexico.

Preliminary reports said that the patrol officers were on bike patrol when the events took place. The reports also said the officers had rocks hurled at them prior to them opening fire.

Mexican president, Felipe Calderon, said that further action would be taken to protect the rights of Mexican migrants. The boy's father, Jesus Hernandez, had this to say, "There is a God, so why would I want vengeance if no one will return him to me. They killed my little boy and the only thing I ask is for the law."

Source: Yahoo News

World's Oldest Leather Shoe Found

According to,
Researchers excavating a cave in Armenia recently have found a leather shoe that could be the oldest the world has ever seen. The archaeologists have been digging in the cave since 2005 , and have since found a variety of skulls , pottery, goat and sheep feces, textiles, and wooden stakes. The shoe is a recent find, and Prehistoric Archeologist and lecturer at University College Cork in Ireland, Ron Pinhasi says,"The right-footed, undecorated shoe -- today it would be a size 5 -- probably belonged to a woman, "but we cannot be certain; it could be a man with small feet."

Pinhasi plans to take the shoe out of Armenia, to show in Switzerland and Germany, but is still waiting for permission by the Armenian government. Because of the shoe's fame so far, the government is posting guard by the excavation site, to prevent looters. "It's turning [out] to be sort of the most important site in Armenia," says Pinhasi.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Steve Jobs presents the new iphone

Yesterday, chief executive of apple, Stece Jobs presented the new design for the iphone. The presentation was a success up until about a half-hour into it, Job's luck shifted.

Jobs was about to display the iphone's Wi-Fi capabilities but only managed to summon an blank webpage. The CEO was overcome with embarassment as he explained how unpredictable the network was. "You know, you could help me out if you're on Wi-Fi, if you could just get off. … I'd appreciate it." ushered Jobs. The audience echoed with laughter as Jobs awkwardly stood, lacking any luck with connecting. To make things even more awkward, someone in the audience yelled, "Verizon," when Jobs asked for a suggestion.

Eventually within another minute, the Wi-Fi was online and Jobs was able to successfully show the phone's internet capabilities. It is unknown how this will affect people's faith in the new iphone. Yet, one thing is for sure, people will not easily forget the humor of this quirky incident.

Source: Yahoo News

Monday, June 7, 2010

Australian Google = Too much power

Ever wonder if big brother is limiting your internet use too much? Australians seem to be encountering similar fears regarding the limitations of their version of internet supergiant: Google. Australian police have been asked to investigate the massive search engine site due to accusations of breaching "federal telecommunications laws".

More specifically, Australians seem to be upset with version of "Google Maps," a popular google application that involves google employees taking pictures and uploading them to the website.
Google has reported that they will fully cooperate with the investigation.

The accusations and subsequent investigation is making news amidst an ever-growing worldwide awareness for the increasing lack of privacy due to social networking sites and services such as Google Maps. Google Maps is being accused of retrieving personal information of businesses and also are using pictures that jeopardize the privacy of small businesses and individual citizens.

As the internet continues to grow, it is the responsibility its users to monitor their privacy and hold mega-companies such as google accountable for any actions that may violate the rights of its users.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Man Dies In Hebron Crash

According to, a man from Hebron was killed Friday night in a car crash. The man, Stephen St. John, 63, was driving along Route 85, when his Lexus turned off the road and crashed into the trees on the right side, according to police. St. John was alone in the car, when his car crashed around 6:50 pm at the London Road intersection.

Man Shot To Death In West Haven; Police Make Arrest

According to, A teenager has been charged by West Haven Police for shooting and killing a man. According to police, they were contacted about a likely hit-and-run incident at the Noble Street and Peck Avenue intersection right after 11 am. Police then responded to the scene and found a man was shot. The man that was shot was Lester McClease, 27, who lived on Blohm Street in West Haven. McClease was shot in the leg and head. He was then transported to Yale New Haven Hospital, where is later pronounced dead. The man that allegedly shot and killed McClease was Joseph Vreeland, 19, who lives on Contract Drive in West Haven. Vreeland was arrested by police about three hours after the shooting at a house on Dana Street. Police believe that these two men were in an argument, that ended with McClease getting shot by Vreeland. Vreeland has charged by the West Haven Police for second-degree murder, possession of marijuana, and possession with intent to sell. Vreeland is now being held on $250,000 bail. Police are still investigating what happened between the two men, that led to the shooting.

Friday, June 4, 2010

RHAM Pops Concerts Reel in the Money

One June 2nd and June 3rd, RHAM high school held its two annual Pops concerts, choral and orchestral. The two concerts were an extreme success, selling over thirty DVD's of the show on the first night and over thirty five on the second. Audience members were eagerly awaiting what the RHAM students had in store for them as they were anticipating an energetic, lively performance. On the first night, Encore, Chamber Singers, Chorus and various soloists performed both original works and famous compositions. Among the many talented acts, highlights included Lesley Knaack, an active member of Encore playing the piano while singing the melodic, "Imagine" by the Beatles. Lesley was accompanied by Scott Adamson on the bass guitar and the piece could not have been more touching to audience members. The piece was dedicated in memory of Timothy Ketterer, former conductor and beloved friend from all the staff and students at RHAM. Other solos included Xander Kousen's slow motion acoustic version of "Hey Ya", an original guitar piece by Kaitlyn Larsen and a trio ensemble performing, "Baby Get Back." Billy Yeterian and his brother Chris performed "Otherside" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers with tremendous harmony and impressive guitarwork. Encore was quite the show performing songs in perfected harmony including "The Rose" and "I Hope You Dance." Chamber Singers sung "Don't Stop Believin'" that included soloists, Xander Kousen and Kaitlyn Williams on the melody. A guy-girl sing off pleased the crowd as both females and males showed what each other had. The concert closed with a medley from Disney movies which also included soloists such as Alex Crockett and Amber Albin.

June 3rd did not cease to impress the audience by any means. The night opened with the Jazz band performing a famous piece composed by Duke Ellington, and smoothly transitioning into probably the crowd favourite of the night, "Superstition." Solos included Cameron Lutz on guitar, dueling saxophones Nicholas Aubin and Ryan Asbridge, Keyboard Matt Angelo and on trumpet, Lesley Knaack. After jazz the concert took a small shift in solo works including "Road Trippin" performed by Christopher Langlois, Cameron D'Auria and Xander Kousen. This act was followed by Greg Matunas, a very talented acoustic guitarist (whose playing highly resembles that of Michael Hedges) playing "Jump" by Van Halen. Brass quintet was a crowd pleaser with "When I'm Sixty Four" and the Inspector Gadget Mission Impossible theme.

The concert was moving along and the audience was hungry for more. The symphonic band did not cease to deliver as they opened their act with a three piece set from "Fantasia". Serving as a spirited contrast to Fantasia, the band closed their set with "A Day at Disneyland", where Mr. Koukus thought it necessary to don Mickey Mouse gloves and hat in order to match his students Disneyesque attire. The show was going well, with solo pieces again that included Daniel Chapman playing a wonderfully relaxing piece entitled, "Serenade." Personally, this was probably my favourite piece of the night, (aside from Superstition). Wind ensemble ended the show with their second piece bieng a four part movement which included a "Prelude to Act 1", "Habaneras" and "Toreadors Song". Their ending piece was both entertaining and fast paced. "Jungle Fantasy", a deserving title, began with Tuba player and bassist, Scott Adamson making chimpanzee noises in order to "set the mood", so to say, for the jungle like atmosphere. Percussionists including Ben Kopchick and Kevin Garcia lightly tapped the bongos and tambourine as the band suddenly interrupted the calm nature of the piece with sharp tones and offbeat scales. The piece had such a groove to it, and towards the end audience members could not stop clapping. Despite the success and joy that overwhelmed the seniors in the band, they could not help but feel melancholic over their former director, Mr. Ketterer. Seniors experienced mixed feelings towards the end of the show feeling accomplished, overjoyed and a little solemn. Linda Parker and Lesley Knaack presented Mr. Koukus with a collage, a tradition that students have carried on for many years now, in remembering the special times he has shared with the classes.

I greatly enjoyed both of these concerts and felt that the emotion was expressed through the music itself. There was never a time when I felt bored or unentertained. It was a lively, well organized event that astounded audience members and left the Seniors feeling gratified.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Al-Qaida Leader is Killed

The recognized Middle-Eastern terrorist group Al-Qaida announced Monday that the U.S. war effort has killed its No. 3 man along with members of his family. This is considered one of the U.S.'s largest victories against the notorious group since the U.S. waged war against terror in response to Al-Qaida's terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

The terrorist, Mustafa al-Yazid, allegedly was taken out my an American missile strike. The Al-Qaida website has declared the major terrorist leader dead along with his wife, three daughters, a grandchild, and other family friends.

The news of the death has already sent a spark through the region and is being noted by various other terrorist groups and organizations around the world.

The U.S. predicts the death of al-Yazid will cause major damage to the leadership of Al-Qaida, as they also lost a major member this past December.

Reportedly killed in 2008, Yazid has been on the United States hit list of the "Drone Campaign" ever since Barrack Obama took office last year.

Yazid, 55, had more than 30 years of experience with terrorist groups and is considered one of the main founders of Al-Qaida.

The United States are very excited about what the terrorist organizations lost of a crucial member will mean to there operations as a whole.

"He definitely seemed to have significant influence among the Pakistani Taliban and Central Asian terrorist groups," terrorism expert Evan Kohlman said.

Music Review: Sons of Sylvia

Sons of Sylvia's debut album "Revelation" contains a variety of styles of music. The general genre of the new group, comprised of three brothers from Virginia, would be classified as Pop/Country.

Upon reviewing the album, I had no idea what to expect. I would not naturally pick up a pop record and listen to it all the way through. However, there were some parts of this album that I was pleasantly surprised by.

Right off the bat, the band caught my interest with the catchy first track "John Wayne." From there, the band continues to roll on through the album delivering plenty of catchy guitar and vocal hooks. Through the first four songs, John Wayne, Love Left to Lose, Revelation, and 50 Ways, I couldn't help but tap my foot to the beat as much as my "anti-pop" forces were telling me not to.

After these four songs, I began to lose interest in the album. The songs began to become monotonous upon reaching this point. There were no fresh ideas, no new guitar leads, no groundbreaking amazing vocals that I hadn't heard in the first few tracks of the album. The lyrics became very corny, which should have been foreshadowed by the first line of the entire album, "Baby I want you back in my arms. . .". The band claims to have written more the 300 songs for the album. However, I find this hard to believe due to the albums lack of originality. While the album lost its luster towards the end, there were still songs I really enjoyed.
The best song off the album is track 4: "50 Ways." This song is noticeably different from the others. Centered around the vocal line "She left me in the middle of the night in a middle of a fight," 50Ways is the most driving song on the album and is, in my opinion, the song most qualified for air play. I couldn't help but break into a smile at the point in which the band kicked in after about 30 seconds.

Overall, the album is catchy; particularly if you are into pop or country. All three brothers undeniably have talent as is evidenced by the instrumental quality of the album. The raw potential is definitely there. However, these three men need to mature as songwriters in order to truly compile a "hit" album. If there were just the first four songs on the album the rating would be 4.5/5. But due to lack of originality and monotony amongst songs, the rating is 3/5.