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If You Watch 100 Porn Videos, Pornhub Will Plant a Tree



Tree

Arbor Day 2014 has come and gone, but Pornhub is still offering users a way to make greener use of their, um, private moments.
In the week following Arbor Day, which fell on April 25, the porn site will plant one tree for every 100 videos watched in their "Big Dick" category. The campaign is cheekily titled "Pornhub Gives America Wood".

According to a counter listed on the campaign's safe-for-work website, more than 11,000 trees will be planted.
"At Pornhub, we give a countless amount of wood every day," Pornhub communications representative Mike Williams told Mashable. "Playing off that, we saw an opportunity to promote our brand and give back to the community." Williams referenced a fundraiser in 2012 for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, when the company donated funds based on clicks in several of their breast-related categories.
Pornhub will choose one of three potential tree-planting organizations to help carry out their campaign: Arbor Day Foundation, Trees for the Future or American Forests. The type of trees, as well as where they will find their final homes, will depend on which organization Pornhub chooses, as each group plants trees indigenous to certain areas of the country.
Users will have until midnight on May 2 to power through as many videos in the specified category as possible. After that, Pornhub will finalize an agreement with a tree-planting organization and begin planting.
"Whatever the species, our trees will grow up to be long and hard and, with any luck, they will go on to spread seed of their own," Williams said.
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Microsoft Adds Printing to Office for iPad Apps



Apple_ipad_microsoftoffice-31
"Users of Microsoft Office for iPad can now print their documents via the apps."

Microsoft has added printing support and a few new features to its suite of Office apps for iPad, just a few weeks after the apps first landed in the Apple App Store.
When the three freemium apps launched last month, the ability to print documents was a glaring omission from the apps' functionality. But Microsoft announced on Tuesday that it's now possible to print via the Word, Excel and PowerPoint for iPad apps to an AirPrint printer. (Various Wi-Fi-enabled printers support Apple's AirPrint software, which is compatible with the iPad and iPhone).

The apps, which are free to download, allow all customers to view/read in Excel and Word, and present in PowerPoint, but require a monthly subscription (starting at $6.99) to edit documents. After launch, the apps quickly soared to the top of the Apple App's free downloads, and although the company hasn't announced numbers, it said "millions" downloaded the apps and "thousands" sent feature requests. Not surprisingly, printing was the top request.
Office for iPad

For those with an Office 365 subscription, it's now possible to print documents within the Word for iPad app, slides within PowerPoint and worksheets or entire spreadsheets within Excel.
PowerPoint

SmartGuides in PowerPoint helps you align pictures, shapes and textboxes.
IMAGE: MICROSOFT
In addition to bug fixes, the app updates also include new features. A tool called SmartGuides in PowerPoint helps users align pictures, shapes, and textboxes as you move them around on a slide. Meanwhile, AutoFit in Excel now lets you adjust the width of multiple rows or the height of multiple columns at the same time.
Bonus: Hands On: Microsoft Office for iPad

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NBA Bans Donald Sterling for Life



Banned_1

Highlights: 3 things you need to know now
  • The NBA completed its investigation on Monday night, and determined that Sterling did make the remarks on the leaked audio tape.
  • Adam Silver said Sterling is banned for life from any NBA activities.
  • Silver will urge the league's owners to vote for a forced sale of the Clippers, but for now Sterling is still the franchise's owner.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver on Tuesday banned Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling from the NBA "for life" and said he will urge the NBA's other owners to vote for a forced sale of the team.

Silver issued his much-anticipated declaration at a press conference about the findings of the NBA's investigation into a leaked audio recording in which a voice identified as Sterling's makes a string of racist remarks. Silver said Sterling admitted to him that the voice on the tape is, in fact, his.

A stream of sponsors fled the Clippers after Sterling's racist comments were publicized, while celebrities and star players alike have called for Sterling to sell his team.
Sterling has dominated the news cycle — sports and non-sports alike — since TMZ first released the recordings on Friday night, and Silver was under considerable public pressure to act quickly, decisively and severely.
Sterling has been known for incendiary remarks and disinterest as a franchise owner among NBA fans for years, but audio recordings released last weekend thrust his character and racial attitudes into the mainstream. On the leaked recording, a voice attributed to Sterling harangues someone purported to be Sterling's girlfriend about her associations with African Americans including NBA legend Magic Johnson, and tells her not to bring them to Clippers games.
The spectacle of Sterling's controversial comments and how they would be dealt with by the league — could he be the first NBA owner forced to sell his team? — have captured the imagination and indignation of many. Here was the scene before Silver's Tuesday afternoon press conference in New York City:


Spike Lee nabbed a second-row seat:


The scene, according to this description from Bleacher Report's Howard Beck, seemed to epitomize the term "media circus":


Silver took the podium at 2:14 p.m. ET. He said the NBA interviewed Sterling as part of its investigation and determined the voice on the leaked recordings to be Sterling's.
Silver banned Sterling for life from any association with the NBA or Clippers. That means no involvement with the team on any level, and being barred from NBA owners' meetings and other activities. Silver also fined Sterling $2.5 million, which he called the "maximum amount allowed" under league rules.
As for Sterling's ownership of the Clippers, Silver said he would do everything in his power to get the league's owners to vote to force Sterling into a sale of the Clippers. ESPN reported before the press conference that a forced sale would require 22 of the league's 30 owners to vote for a forced sale.
Meanwhile, the Clippers used their homepage to make a powerful statement on Tuesday:


Magic Johnson, mentioned as persona non grata at Clippers games in the audio recording that earned Sterling his lifetime ban, tweeted his support for a forced sale of the Clippers, referencing the coming vote from league owners in this tweet:


Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, who was until this week the league's highest-profile owner, tweeted his support for Silver's response to Sterling's comments:


Silver took over from David Stern as NBA commissioner on Feb. 1 of this year, and most think he passed his first big test with flying colors so far. If you want to learn more about who Silver is and where he came from these two profiles from the New York Times andWall Street Journal are good reading.


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Will Donald Sterling Get a $1 Billion Payday for Being Racist?



Sterlingsmiles
"Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling looks on during the first half of their NBA basketball game against the Atlanta Hawks, Wednesday, Jan. 14, 2009, in Los Angeles."

When Donald Sterling bought the Clippers for $12 million in 1981, the NBA was a very different place, one yet to be changed by transcendent players, shrewd marketing and a global explosion in popularity. This season alone, for example, the Clippers' two biggest stars — Chris Paul and Blake Griffin — are earning $18 million and $16 million,respectively.
Forbes valued the Clippers at $575 million this January — a number that's almost certainly much lower than what the team would likely sell for. So if Sterling does indeed become the first owner in NBA history forced to sell his franchise, then he stands to make a healthy profit — perhaps more than $1 billion.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver on Tuesday banned Sterling from the league for life, and fined him $2.5 million following widespread public backlash to racist remarks made by Sterling that were leaked to media in an audio recording. (Yes, that's nothing for a man whose net worth is estimated at nearly $2 billion, but Silver said it's the maximum allowed under league rules.)

Silver added that he will urge the league's other owners to vote Sterling into a forced sale of the Clippers. That would be a precedent-setting move, and one that would take a 75% majority of owners voting in favor, but it's something you can fully expect to happen, Silver said.
The sale of the Milwaukee Bucks — a team located in a less lucrative media market and with a much less talented roster — for $550 million earlier this month suggests the Clippers would actually sell for much more than Forbes valuation of $575 million. According to many media reports, including one from Yahoo's NBA reporter Adrian Wojnarowski, bidding for the team is expected to soar over $1 billion:

We've asked the NBA whether a forced sale would preclude Sterling from receiving any portion of the profits from that sale, but have yet to hear back. However, any scenario like that does appear highly doubtful.
So for now, here's some simple math. Say Wojnarowski is correct and the Clippers sell for $1.1 billion. Take away the $12 million Sterling paid for the team, and what's left is $1.088 billion — a return more than 91 times greater than Sterling's initial investment in the team.
Meanwhile, Sterling told longtime sportscaster Jim Gray on Tuesday that the Clippers are "not for sale." Sterling also has a litigious history, so don't expect him to go down without a fight if his fellow owners vote, as most expect they will, for a forced sale.
Given the circumstances, that's a tough legal battle that will be very interesting to see play out. But rest assured the NBA and its owners will do everything they can to oust Sterling; they simply can't afford the stain he brings to the league's reputation.
Sure, there's something decidedly grotesque about a racist outburst resulting in a billion-dollar profit. But if that's what it takes to rid the NBA of someone many fans feel should have been gone a long time ago, then it will be but a side-note in a historic sports moment.


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Who Is Daisy Ridley? Everything We Could Find on the 'Star Wars' Mystery Woman



Daisy-ridley
Daisy Ridley is the only "unknown" in the new "Star Wars" cast.

Daisy Ridley is a 5-foot-7 jazz singer, dancer and strong swimmer with dark hair, a native London accent, and a few minor television credits she gathered over the past year. She's in her early 20s, and used to go by @daisyjazz on Twitter — before the account was disabled.
That’s about all we know about the lone "unknown" member of the Star Wars VII cast. Other than that she’s about to become very, very famous.

In the hours after Disney and Lucasfilm's big casting announcement, Ridley's acting reel was pulled down from Vimeo. She has no Wikipedia page; no photos on Getty Images (jeez, even I have photos on Getty Images); no U.S. representation listed in any of the entertainment databases; no bio on her imdb page; and her exact age is not listed anywhere.
A call placed by Mashable to her agency, a boutique firm in the central London neighborhood of Clerkenwell, was promptly returned by a polite gentleman who referred every question over to Lucasfilm. And you know Lucasfilm isn’t talking.
The agency is called Jonathan Arun, named after its founder, who’s pictured below, left. As these things go, Arun most likely both gained and lost a huge client with Tuesday’s announcement — she’s on the roster now, and the small agency will collect a handsome fee. But if her Star Wars role makes any kind of impact at all, she’ll almost certainly be moving on to William Morris, Endeavor or Creative Artists Agency (no one dances with the date who brought them anymore).
jonathan.arun

Jonathan Arun, left, represents "Star Wars VII" castmember Daisey Ridley.

As can be expected wherever J.J. Abrams is involved, the layer of secrecy is always thicker than whatever’s beneath it. Before Ridley’s acting reel was yanked from Vimeo, I watched it. It was perfectly fine and should’ve been left up. Ridley is charming, at times intense, but with a playful streak. Big, winning, dimpled smile.
Ridley is a relative newcomer to acting, as her credits reach back only to last year. In one of those, a sci-fi horror action short called “Blue Season,” she plays a kidnapped girl being manipulated by an evil voice on the telephone line. For now, the entire thing is here:

That, and a micro-budget UK film titled Scrawl in post-production are her only film credits. As for TV, her longest-running part was a two-episode arc on a pathology procedural called Silent Witness. Her four other TV credits were all one-offs. But she does appear in this music video:

Just like any 20-something, Ridley was active on social media, though it appears she's disabled her account well ahead of Tuesday's announcement. But there are remnants out there.
For instance, she has a younger sister who's a model:
Wasn't shy about out-and-about selfies:


And had her picture taken at cast parties ...

As for who she will be playing in Star Wars VII, well — there are scant clues there, too.
In the cast photo released by Disney/Lucasfilm, Ridley is sitting between Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher. Is she their daughter? That seems the most likely scenario, and could be a doozy of a character: Through the Skywalker line, she has the Force. Through the Solo line, she has the mojo.
star-wars-episode-7-cast-announce

The Star Wars Episode VII team assembles with director J.J. Abrams.

IMAGE: LUCASFILM
There’s also been rumor of a female continuation of the Kenobi line, which would be a nice call-back to a beloved character. Her profile on the Jonathan Arun website reveals some details: She’s a native Londoner and can do Cockney and an Irish brogue as well. But nothing about an American accent. More evidence that she’s a Kenobi? For now only time, and the Hollywood rumor mill, will tell.


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20 Songs Turning 20 in 2014





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YouTube Star Gets a Hit by Turning Rap Song Into Piano Ballad on 'The Voice'




YouTube sensation Christina Grimmie, a finalist on NBC's The Voice, transformed a song by rapper Drake into a beautiful piano ballad during Monday's live episode.
Now, the studio version of her performance has soared to No. 4 on the iTunes top-songs chart. The Voice counts iTunes sales as votes, but when a contestant breaks into the chart's top 10, the singer's sales total is multiplied by five, and then added into the overall votes. Grimmie's ranking will help her avoid getting eliminated on Tuesday's results show.

Grimmie's performance earned rave reviews from her coach Adam Levine, as well as fellow coaches Shakira, Usher and Blake Shelton.
Scandal's leading lady Kerry Washington even gave Grimmie kudos on Twitter:

Grimmie broke onto the YouTube scene in 2009 when she began uploading videos of herself performing cover songs on a keyboard in her bedroom with a Sonic the Hedgehog poster behind her. Since then, her videos have racked up nearly 270 million views.
Grimmie, who has a much bigger online following than any other finalist on The Voice(2.6 million subscribers on YouTube), encouraged her Twitter followers to purchase the song to keep her in the competition. And on Tuesday, she rejoiced as she watched it climb the iTunes chart:

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'Supermassive' Black Hole Is About to Shred This Gas Cloud



Sgra-black-hole
"The supermassive black hole known as Sgr A* is about 4 million times the mass of the sun and lies about 26,000 light years from Earth in the center of the Milky Way galaxy."

Scientists around the world are tracking a doomed cloud of gas as it makes a daring approach toward the monster black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy, a cosmic encounter that might reveal new secrets on how such supermassive black holes evolve.
The G2 space cloud, and its ultimate death by black hole, have been under close scrutiny since the cloud's fate was first identified in 2011. Now, the cloud is destined to be shredded by a supermassive black hole.
For scientists Stefan Gillessen and Daryl Haggard, the excitement is mounting over the impending death of G2.

"We get to watch it unfolding in a human lifetime, which is very unusual and very exciting," said Haggard, a researcher at Northwestern University in Illinois, during a presentation this month at the American Physical Society in Savannah, Georgia. Gillessen is a researcher with the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Germany.

Milky Way's black hole heart

The supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way is known as Sagittarius A*(pronounced "Sagittarius A-star" and known as Sgr A*). It is 4 million times as massive as the sun and visible only by its effects on the surrounding stars.
In 2011, Gillessen and a team of astronomers found that a small gas cloud with a mass roughly three times that of Earth is on a collision course with the black hole in the Milky Way's core. Scientists quickly determined that the cloud would begin to interact with Sgr A* around the end of March 2014 — one month ago — and have been monitoring it continuously in various wavelengths.

A space cloud's doom

At its closest, G2 will pass the Sgr A* black hole at a range about 150 times the distance from Earth to the sun. (The Earth-sun distance is about 93 million miles, or 150 million kilometers). If Sgr A* were located where the sun is, the G2 cloud would be located within the boundaries of the solar system.

"There's a lot of action in a small space," Haggard said.
Haggard serves as the principal investigator on a project that monitors the interaction using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and the NRAO's Very Large Array, combining the X-ray and radio wavelengths to learn more about the days ahead. Gillessen keeps the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope tuned to the heart of the Milky Way.
"The object is being accelerated — it's getting faster and faster," Gillessen said.
Already, parts of the cloud have begun to shift. Turbulence and the tidal forces of the black hole combine to mix up the gas cloud as it approaches the black hole. "It looks like a drop of milk in your morning coffee," Gillessen added.
The front of the cloud has begun to move faster than the back as gravity affects the region closer to the black hole. Gillessen compared it to a train whose back was moving slower than the front—"not very healthy," he said.
But while some wavelengths have begun to show the effects, G2 has remained silent in the X-ray regions observed by Chandra.
"So far in the X-ray, there is no sign of the G2 interaction," Haggard said. "We're hoping that will change in time."
X-Ray of Black Hole Activity

Sgr A* is at center. Low-energy X-rays (300 to 1,500 electron volts) are shown in red, medium-energy (1,500 to 3,000 eV) in green, and high-energy (3,000 to 10,000 eV) in blue. The total exposure time is 12.6 days.

IMAGE: NASA SWIFT/N. DEGENAAR (UNIV. OF MICHIGAN)
Sgr A* itself hasn't been quiet; in 2013, NASA's Swift Gamma-Ray Burst mission detected the brightest flare ever observed from the black hole. According to Haggard, the flare is probably not connected to G2, but it's possible that as the gas cloud gets shredded, it could potentially give rise to similar flares, though from a greater distance.

A proud lion or a growing child?

As the gas cloud interacts with Sgr A*, Haggard expressed hope that it would help scientists to understand how black holes grow so large. While supermassive black holes can reach masses millions of times that of the average star, other black holes can pack a single stellar mass into a small space.
Scientists know that supermassive black holes grow primarily by accreting stars, gas and dust, but they are uncertain as to how often the behemoths require feeding.
Haggard describes three possibilities: A black hole might grow in fits and starts, like a lion on the savannah, eating and getting fat, then lazing about for days before hunting again. Or it might grow more like a child, steadily over time but ultimately tapering off; A third possibility is that it could grow like the national debt — "one of the few things I could think of that just grows and grows and grows and grows," she said.
The last one can be ruled out from observational evidence; if black holes grew continuously, they would be far larger than any that have yet been seen. Observations of G2 may help scientists determine which of the other two possibilities could be correct.
At three times the mass of the Earth, clouds like G2 would be insufficient to supersize a black hole. However, the cloud could provide insight into how often such interactions occur. As G2 is shredded, it could also provide some clues about the flickering that occurs at the heart of other galaxies, which could be caused by their consumption of similar clouds.
Both scientists expressed excitement at the chance to observe an astronomical event, which usually takes place on a scale of millions to billions of years, in real time — though Haggard pointed out that the cloud was actually shredded around 25,000 years ago. Because light takes time to travel, scientists can only now observe the event that happened in the past.
Gillessen compared observing the collision to a soccer game. Most of the time, astronomy can be likened to listening to a penalty shot over the radio, but to experience the action in person is far more thrilling.
Haggard expressed similar excitement.
"We don't get to design experiments very often in astrophysics. We are observers, not experimentalists," she said. "It's exciting to have something that feels more like an experiment."


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