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MySpace to expand to mobile music

April 18th, 2019

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Tuesday, September 12, 2006

News Corp. has purchased a controlling interest in Jamba, the ringtone company created by VeriSign. The $188 million give News Corp. a 51% interest in the public-owned company.

Jamba, and its American brand Jamster, will be merged into News Corp.’s Mobizzo. Mobizzo sells short video clips of television series. It is expected MySpace will integrate the ringtone sales somehow into News Corp.’s social networking website MySpace; MySpace recently announced it would sell music on its website.

News Corp President and CEO Peter Chernin commented to Reuters that “wireless technology gives us an enormous opportunity to reach billions of mobile phone users with our content”.

The announcement was made this morning by News Corporation, which owns MySpace.

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Judge orders residents and city to come to agreement on partially collapsed building in Buffalo, New York

April 18th, 2019

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Thursday, June 19, 2008

Buffalo, New York —Judge Justice Christopher Burns of the New York State Supreme Court has ordered a halt to an emergency demolition on a 19th century stable and livery on 428-430 Jersey Street in Buffalo, New York that partially collapsed on Wednesday June 11, initially causing at least 15 homes to be evacuated. At least two homes remain evacuated.

Burns orders that both the city and the group Save The Livery (www.savethelivery.com) have to come to an agreement on what to do with the building, and try to work out ways of saving at least some portions if it including the facade, side walls and a lift tower. Save The Livery is comprised of concerned area residents who have grown to love the building’s historic and unique character. On June 14, they won a temporary restraining order to stop demolition. The court ruled that the city was only allowed to remove material in immediate danger to residents and pedestrians, but stated that the demolition could only be performed with “hand tools.” The court also ordered that any rubble which had fallen into neighboring yards when the building collapsed, to be removed.

“It is in the interest of the city to have a safe environment–but also important to maintain a sense of historical preservation,” stated Burns in his ruling. Burns has given the sides until tomorrow (Friday June 20) to come to an agreement and has ordered both parties to return to court at 9:30 a.m. (eastern time) “sharp.” Activists of Save The Livery urge supporters of the stable to “fill the courtroom” to show “continued and ongoing support.” The hearing is scheduled to take place at 25 Delaware Avenue in the Supreme Court building, 3rd Floor, trial part 19.

Currently the building is owned by Bob Freudenheim who has several building violations against him because of the buildings poor condition. He has received at least five violations in three months and residents who live near the building state that Freudenheim should be “100% responsible” for his actions. Many are afraid that if the building is demolished, Freudenheim’s charges of neglect will be abolished.

On June 17, developer and CEO of Savarino Companies, Sam Savarino was at the site of the stable, discussing the building with residents and preservationists. In 2006, Savarino proposed and planned The Elmwood Village Hotel, a ‘botique’ hotel on the Southeast corner of Elmwood and Forest Avenues. The project was later withdrawn after residents filed a lawsuit against Savarino and the city. Wikinews extensively covered the story, and contacted Savarino for his professional opinion on the building.

“[I would] love to see it preserved. I was there to see if there was anything we could do to help, to see if anything can be salvaged. I just want to see the right thing happen, and so does the city,” stated Savarino to Wikinews who added that he was allowed inside the building for a brief period.

“The side walls are beyond repair. The roof has rotted and it could come down at any time,” added Savarino who also said that the building “below the second floor appears to be stable.” He also states that the back wall of the building, which borders several homes, appears to be intact.

“Eliminating the back wall could be a problem for the neighbors. It is not unreasonable to leave at least 12 feet” of the back wall standing, added Savarino.

Savarino did not say if he was interested in buying the property, but did state, “I am sure there are a couple of people interested” in buying the property. On Thursday, Buffalo News reported that a “businessman” might be interested in purchasing the property, though Wikinews is not able to independently confirm the report. Savarino says that with the property still slated for emergency demolition, a potential buyer could face tax fees of nearly US$300,000.

Freudenheim gave the city permission to demolish the building on Thursday June 12 during an emergency Preservation Board meeting, because he would not be “rehabilitating the building anytime soon.” Freudenheim, along with his wife Nina, were part-owners of the Hotel Lenox at 140 North Street in Buffalo and were advocates to stop the Elmwood Village Hotel. They also financially supported a lawsuit in an attempt to stop the hotel from being built. Though it is not known exactly how long Freudenheim has owned the stable, Wikinews has learned that he was the owner while fighting to stop the hotel from being built. Residents say that he has been the owner for at least 22 years.

The building was first owned by a company called White Bros. and was used as a stable for a farm which once covered the land around the building for several blocks. The Buffalo Fire Department believes the building was built around 1814, while the city property database states it was built in 1870. Servants and workers of the farm were housed inside resident quarters situated at the rear of the building on what is now Summer Street, but are now cottages where area residents currently reside. Some date as far back as 1829.

At about 1950, the stable was converted into an automobile body shop and gasoline station.A property record search showed that in 1950 at least four fuel storage tanks were installed on the property. Two are listed as 550 square feet while the other two are 2,000 square feet. All of the tanks are designated as a TK4, which New York State says is used for “below ground horizontal bulk fuel storage.” The cost of installing a tank of that nature according to the state, at that time, included the tank itself, “excavation and backfill,” but did not include “the piping, ballast, or hold-down slab orring.” It is not known if the tanks are still on the property, but residents are concerned the city was not taking the precautions to find out.

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Canada’s Don Valley West (Ward 26) city council candidates speak

April 18th, 2019

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This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.

Friday, November 3, 2006

On November 13, Torontonians will be heading to the polls to vote for their ward’s councillor and for mayor. Among Toronto’s ridings is Don Valley West (Ward 26). Four candidates responded to Wikinews’ requests for an interview. This ward’s candidates include Muhammad Alam, Bahar Aminvaziri, Orhan Aybars, Michele Carroll-Smith, Mohamed Dhanani, Abdul Ingar, Geoff Kettel, Debbie Lechter, Natalie Maniates, John Masterson, John Parker, David Thomas, Csaba Vegh, and Fred Williams.

For more information on the election, read Toronto municipal election, 2006.

Contents

  • 1 Geoff Kettel
  • 2 Natalie Maniates
  • 3 John Parker
  • 4 Csaba Vegh
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TESEV Report on Eastern Turkey for UNDP released

April 18th, 2019

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Friday, November 24, 2006

According to a report released by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) for United Nation’s Development Plan, the per capita GNP in Eastern Turkey, an area predominantly inhabited by Kurdish people, is as low as seven percent of that of the European Union on average. The report analyzed a region of 21 cities in Eastern Turkey*. One of the cities included in the report, ??rnak, was reported to be as poor as Botswana, Southern Africa.

Other points highlighted in the report included:

  • 60% of the population in the region was under the poverty line. If this situation persists, people may start to migrate to Northern Iraq.
  • If 1% of the national income is spent on Eastern Turkey’s infrastructure and social investment for 7 years, the region will be enabled to finance itself. If the economic and social conditions in the region are fixed, the fragile relationship between the Turkish government and the Kurdish people of the region may improve.
  • Access to health services is a primary human right. Without access to health services, one cannot expect that people of this region can live in confidence. Health institutions should employ nurses who speak Kurdish so the patients can communicate with the health services staff.
  • The use of the private sector is not reliable as a solution. The government should act to remedy the lack of infrastructure in the region.

Honda Civic tops Canada’s list of most stolen cars

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Honda Civic tops Canada’s list of most stolen cars

April 17th, 2019

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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The 1999 and 2000 year model Honda Civic SiR tops the list of Canada’s most stolen cars.

Consumer popularity also assures the cars will be popular with thieves. Its the second year in a row the Honda SiR has topped the list.

Rick Dubin Vice President of Investigations for the Insurance Bureau of Canada said “The Civics are easy targets.”

Dubin said that once stolen, the cars are most often sold to “chop shops” where thieves completely dismantle the vehicles. The automobile’s individual parts are worth more than the entire car.

The sheer numbers of the cars and their lack of theft deterrent systems make them thieves’ preferred choices.

1999 and 2000 Honda Civics do not come with an electronic immobilizer, however all Hondas from 2001 and onward are equipped with an immobilizer. Immobilizers will be mandatory on all new cars sold beginning September 2007. The devices enable an engine computer to recognize an electronic code in the key. If the code in the key and the engine don’t match exactly, the vehicle can’t be started.

In third place was the 2004 Subaru Impreza, while the 1999 Acura Integra came in fourth, with the 1994 Honda Civic rounding out the top five.

In sixth place, the 1998 Acura Integra, and the 1993 Dodge Shadow completed seventh.

When asked why early model vehicles are selected, he said that, “auto thieves continue to find it easier to steal older vehicles lacking an IBC-approved immobilizer. We’ve seen this trend developing for several years, and these results confirm it.”

Another Honda automobile, the 1996 year model Civic filled eighth place, with the 2000 German Audi TT Quattro in ninth.

The American 1996 Chevrolet/GMC Blazer rounded out the top ten.

None of the above cars had an electronic immobilizer.

Google provides Gmail access to American cell phone customers

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Google provides Gmail access to American cell phone customers

April 16th, 2019

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Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Gmail, Google’s popular e-mail service launched earlier last year, is now available to any American cell phone user via text messaging.

Cell phone owners can send Google their phone number, and are then sent an access code via SMS that enables them to open an account. Google has stated that the number is only used to “manage the number of accounts created per phone”, and that it “will never be sold or shared for marketing purposes” without the user’s permission.

The service is not necessarily free — cell phone service providers may charge for the delivery of the code.

While the system currently only works in the U.S., Google says it has plans to add more countries.

No oil spillage after platform explodes in the Gulf of Mexico

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No oil spillage after platform explodes in the Gulf of Mexico

April 16th, 2019

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Thursday, September 2, 2010

An oil platform owned by Mariner Energy has exploded in the Gulf of Mexico throwing thirteen people into the water, reports indicate. All thirteen men who fell into the water have been accounted for, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. No injuries were reported. Smoke was billowing from the oil rig named Vermilion 380, which is reported to still be on fire.

The blast occurred at around 9:19 a.m., approximately 80 miles south of Vermilion Bay off the coast of Louisiana. The Coast Guard confirms the platform was producing oil and gas at the time it exploded. They earlier reported a one mile long and 100 foot wide oil sheen which was spotted at the site of the explosion shortly after authorities responded to the scene, but later backtracked saying they could not confirm the presence of a sheen. Coast Guard chief petty officer John Edwards of the US Coast Guard earlier said that the platform, “was not actively producing any product.” Mariner Energy also released a statement earlier saying no oil sheen was spotted.

“In an initial flyover, no hydrocarbon spill was reported,” said Mariner Energy in a press release following the explosion. “The cause is not known, and an investigation will be undertaken. During the last week of August 2010, production from this facility averaged approximately 9.2 million cubic feet of natural gas per day and 1,400 barrels of oil and condensate.” According to Bureau of Energy Management Regulation and Enforcement spokesperson Melissa Schwartz, the platform was authorized to produce natural gas and oil at those depths, but “there were ongoing maintenance activities underway” which caused it to stop producing. The platform sits in about 2,500 feet of water, though some reports put the platform in 340 feet of water.

As a result of the explosion and fire, Bobby Jindal, the governor for the state of Louisiana said that the Vermillion 380 platform had been “shut” and that oil flowing from the bottom of the Gulf has been stopped. At least 6 other platforms are said to be connected to the well that Vermilion 380 was part of. Jindal also said the fire was burning due to flammable materials on the platform.

Apache Corporation, which has agreed to, but has not yet completed a merger with Mariner Energy, did not comment on whether the explosion would have any effect on the deal. The vice-president Bob Dye told Wikinews that “Apache and Mariner agreed to merge in April, 2010, however, the transaction has not yet closed so Mariner remains the operator of this platform”.

All 13 people have been rescued by an oil support vessel and have been transported to a nearby platform. Edwards earlier told MSNBC that all those who were in the water were “wearing some sort of an immersion suit that protects them from the water. Right now we’re focused on search and rescue and then, ultimately, as this thing progresses we’re going to be looking into the cause.”

The explosion comes only four months after the Deepwater Horizon oil rig run by BP exploded in April, resulting in a massive oil spill. The platform is located about 200 miles west of the Deepwater incident.

Iran hangs three suspects for mosque bombing, blames U.S. and Israel

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Iran hangs three suspects for mosque bombing, blames U.S. and Israel

April 14th, 2019

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Sunday, May 31, 2009

On Saturday morning three Jundallah men responsible for the bombing of a mosque in Zahedan, Iran, on Thursday, May 28, were hanged near the same mosque. The Iranian government said the United States, al Qaeda and Israel were involved in the bombing; the U.S. State Department rejected the allegation of American involvement.

The bomb had exploded in the city’s second largest Shiite mosque, Amir Al-Momenin, during evening prayers killing 25 and injuring at least 145 others.

“The bomb exploded at the time of evening prayer and killed a number of worshippers,” said Ali Mohammad Azad, the governor general of the province of Sistan and Baluchestan. This Iranian province borders both Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The three men were already in custody prior to the explosion, in connection with previous bombing attacks in 2007. The provincial judiciary reported that the three confessed to “illegally bringing explosives into Iran and giving them to the main person behind the bombing.”

“The bombing happened with the explosives these three convicted criminals brought to the country. They were convicted as ‘mohareb’ (fighter against God), ‘corrupt on the earth’ and acting against national security,” said Ebrahim Hamidi, a local judiciary official.

Sunni rebels of the Jundullah (Soldiers of God) group said they sent a suicide bomber to attack a secret meeting of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards being held in the mosque. Mosques are held to be “gathering places for revolutionary Shiites”.

“I announce that … those who committed the bombing are neither Shi’ite nor Sunni. They are Americans and Israelis,” said Sadegh Mahsouli, interior minister in President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s cabinet. Jalal Sayyah, a senior security official in Zahedan, said, “Hire of the terrorists by the U.S. was verified based on investigation.” Iran says that the Jundallah are part of the al Qaeda and are also backed by the United States who equipped the terrorists. These claims have been denied by Washington.

The Islamic Republic of Iran Presidential elections will be held June 12. On Friday, the presidential campaign offices were also attacked by gunmen.

Thursday was a public Iranian holiday which honoured the death of Fatima Zahra, “the Mother of the Imams”, the daughter of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.

Wikinews interviews Frugalware Linux founder

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Wikinews interviews Frugalware Linux founder

April 14th, 2019

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Thursday, April 6, 2006

The Frugalware Development Team describes ­­Frugalware as a general purpose Linux distribution, designed for intermediate users who are not afraid of text mode. Frugalware also plans to offer a live CD with desktop options, to be developed by one of its teams. A live CD enables running the Linux software on most compatible Intel and AMD chipset architectures, without having to partition a drive.

A freelance journalist writing for Wikinews interviewed the founder of Frugalware Linux, Miklós Vajna.

Wikinews: Frugalware is a slack distribution at present. Are there plans for developing binary package management platforms of it?

Miklós Vajna: Our package manager is called pacman, and its primary purpose is to install binary packages. If you want to install packages from source, you can use our “repoman” tool.

Wikinews: What are your visions for the future of Frugalware, do you plan to globally distribute it as a product, and would you consider allowing a major corporation to sponsor your efforts?

Miklós Vajna: The second. Frugalware is free, but maintaining it needs hardware, mirrors, money. We got several donations already (build servers), and we continuously need them. If a corporation want to sponsor us, I think that is totally O.K. 🙂

Wikinews: What is Arch Linux in relationship to your project? And how do their efforts fit into your game plan?

Miklós Vajna: The common [thing] in Arch Linux and Frugalware is the package manager. (To be strict: nothing else.) Developing our package manager is a common effort. If anyone [is] interested in its development, he/she can subscribe to the pacman development mailing list.

Wikinews: I’ve successfully installed Frugalware, OpenSUSE, and WinXP on the same box. Do you see a lot of people doing this sort of thing in the future?

Miklós Vajna: We support having more than one operating system on a single machine — though this matters only in case Frugalware is the last installed operating system. We do not have any statistics about what operating systems do other people use besides Frugalware, if they have more than one.

Wikinews: Is it possible that PearPC and Frugalware may have a relationship to distribute the PearPC Emulator with Frugalware in the future?

Miklós Vajna: It is already available [1].

Wikinews: What kinds of software might you include with further editions of Frugalware? Is Muse part of the base package for electronic musicians, or will you have those sorts of things?

Miklós Vajna: No [2]. It is not available at the moment. You can request a package by filing a feature request to our Bug Tracking System, at [3].

Wikinews: Is the autoupdating feature of Frugalware unique to Frugalware and perhaps a keystone to future developments?

Miklós Vajna: I have never tried other autoupdating features. What one can see is that upgrading even from the previous stable release — which means installing 6 months of update at once — requires only a few tricks, and these are documented. So it works as it should, and we always pay attention not to break this great feature.

Wikinews: What can new users of Frugalware do to test and relay infotmation back to the developers through the correct channels?

Miklós Vajna: We have released stable versions two times a year. There are testing releases every two months. If one would like to help us, then download these releases, test them, and if something is broken, then file a bug report to the BTS (mentioned above already).

Frugalware has new X Windows video drivers that provide a major speed improvement over available patches for previous editions of Linux. Alex Smith has been working on them as a developer.

In addition, the PearPC emulator mentioned above, which comes with the package manager, may, with proper tuning and installation of a legal copy of Mac OSX, enable many Intel and AMD Frugalware users to use the Apple OS on their desktops. Alex Smith is also a contact person for the PearPC project, which can also be found in irc://irc.freenode.net and at http://www.pearpc.net.

The official release time of the latest edition frugalware-0.4 was Mar 30 07:42:21. The developers can be reached for comment through IRC at #frugalware in the irc.freenode.net network.

Shimon Peres discusses the future of Israel

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Shimon Peres discusses the future of Israel

April 14th, 2019

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Wednesday, January 9, 2008

This year Israel turns sixty and it has embarked upon a campaign to celebrate its birthday. Along with technology writers for Slate, PC Magazine, USA Today, BusinessWeek, Aviation Weekly, Wikinews was invited by the America-Israel Friendship League and the Israeli Foreign Ministry to review Israel’s technology sector. It’s part of an effort to ‘re-brand the country’ to show America that there is more to Israel than the Palestinian conflict. On this trip we saw the people who gave us the Pentium processor and Instant Messaging. The schedule was hectic: 12-14 hours a day were spent doing everything from trips to the Weizmann Institute to dinner with Yossi Vardi.

On Thursday, the fifth day of the junket, David Saranga of the foreign ministry was able to arrange an exclusive interview for David Shankbone with the President of Israel, Nobel Peace Prize recipient Shimon Peres. For over an hour they spoke about Iranian politics, whether Israel is in danger of being side-lined in Middle Eastern importance because of Arab oil wealth, and his thoughts against those who say Israeli culture is in a state of decay.

The only crime I committed was to be a little bit ahead of time. And if this is the reason for being controversial, maybe the reason is better than the result.

Shimon Peres spent his early days on kibbutz, a bygone socialist era of Israel. In 1953, at the age of 29, Peres became the youngest ever Director General of the Ministry of Defense. Forty years later it was Peres who secretly gave the green light for dialogue with Yassir Arafat, of the verboten Palestine Liberation Organization. It was still official Israeli policy to not speak with the PLO. Peres shares a Nobel Peace Prize with Yitzak Rabin and Arafat for orchestrating what eventually became the Oslo Accords. The “roadmap” that came out of Oslo remains the official Israeli (and American) policy for peace in the Palestinian conflict. Although the majority of Israeli people supported the plans, land for peace was met with a small but fiery resistance in Israel. For negotiating with Arafat, former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shouted at Peres, “You are worse than Chamberlain!” a reference to Hitler’s British appeaser. It was during this time of heated exchanges in the 1990s that Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated by Yigal Amir, a Jew who thought it against Halakhic law to give up land given by God (Hashem).

Peres is the elder statesman of Israeli politics, but he remembers that he has not always been as popular as he is today. “Popularity is like perfume: nice to smell, dangerous to drink,” said Peres. “You don’t drink it.” The search for popularity, he goes on to say, will kill a person who has an idea against the status quo.

Below is David Shankbone’s interview with Shimon Peres, the President of Israel.

Contents

  • 1 Israeli technology
  • 2 The future of the peace process in Israel
  • 3 The waning importance of history
  • 4 Is Israel a united society?
  • 5 Iran: will Israel strike first?
  • 6 The 2006 Lebanon War
  • 7 On American politics
  • 8 Peres on his Presidency and learning from the future, not the past
  • 9 Related news
  • 10 Sources