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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sponsors: FIFA scandal hurting soccer

FIFA president Sepp Blatter has been widely criticized for failing to address questions about corruption at a press conference.NEW: Sponsors of international football express concern about a top-level ethics scandalFIFA president Sepp Blatter insists there is no crisis in world football's governing bodyThe FA says the election should be delayed after Blatter's only challenger is suspendedFIFA chooses who hosts the World Cup every four years

(CNN) -- Sponsors of international soccer including Visa, Coca-Cola and Adidas have warned that an ethics scandal at the highest levels of the sport is hurting the sport and needs to be fixed.

"The current situation is clearly not good for the game," a Visa spokesman told CNN Tuesday, echoing comments from other companies that pay to have their logos at the World Cup and other major soccer events. The Visa spokesman declined to be named.

"The negative tenor of the public debate around FIFA at the moment is neither good for football nor for FIFA," Adidas chief communications officer Jan Runau told CNN Tuesday.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter held an extraordinary press conference amid the scandal Monday night, insisting the organization was not in crisis after two top officials were suspended amid ethics concerns.

Never mind Saint Sepp, the system is to blame

One of the officials, Mohamed Bin Hammam, was the only person running against Blatter for the presidency in an election scheduled for Wednesday. FIFA says the vote will go ahead on schedule, with Blatter as the only candidate.

The powerful English Football Association called on FIFA Tuesday to delay the vote.

"This has been a very damaging time for the reputation of FIFA and therefore the whole of football," FA president David Bernstein said.

The Scottish Football Association echoed the call.

"The events of the last two days, in particular, have made any election unworkable," SFA head Stewart Reagan said in a statement.

Sponsor Emirates airlines said it was "disappointed" by the "issues around the administration" of FIFA, and Coca-Cola said Monday that the ethics allegations were "distressing and bad for the sport."

The concerns come as Blatter shrugged off allegations of corruption within FIFA Monday and said he would press ahead with his bid to be re-elected as president for the fourth time.

Bin Hammam of Qatar was suspended by the FIFA ethics committee Sunday, along with fellow leading official Jack Warner.

"We are not in a crisis, we are only in some difficulties and these can be solved inside our family," Blatter told a press conference Monday where he was continually pressed on both his own position and wider allegations of wrongdoing within FIFA.

"FIFA is strong enough to deal with our own problems," he asserted when asked if he had considered postponing Wednesday's vote by the 208-member FIFA Congress.

FIFA is the body that decides where soccer's quadrennial World Cup will be held, among other responsibilities.

Blatter ruled out a new vote on the venue for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after a suggestion that it had won unfairly.

"There is no issue for the World Cup in 2022," the 75-year-old Swiss said.

"I believe that the decision taken for the World Cup in 2022 was done exactly in the same pattern and in the same way as the 2018 tournament."

Bin Hamman, who led the Qatar bid, said earlier Monday that he would appeal his suspension.

"I am punished before I am found guilty," Bin Hammam said in a statement, saying he would "not accept" the decision.

Blatter, who was cleared by the ethics committee, did admit that the whole affair had affected FIFA's reputation.

"What has happened in the last few days and week -- it has done great damage to the image of FIFA," he said.

The press conference was conducted in an acrimonious atmosphere as frustrated journalists shouted out questions.

"We're not in a bazaar here, we are in an important congress," retorted Blatter at one point.

It rounded off an extraordinary day of accusation and counter accusation, with CONCACAF chief Warner the focal point.

"At the end of the day, Blatter has to be stopped," Warner, whose organization covers North and Central America and the Caribbean, told gathered reporters, clearly angered by his expulsion from FIFA's executive committee.

Warner also released an e-mail to reporters which implied that FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke believed there was corruption involved in Qatar's successful bid to host the 2022 World Cup.

"He thought he could buy FIFA as they bought the World Cup," Warner claims Valcke said of Bin Hammam in the e-mail.

Qatar's football association Monday "categorically denied any wrongdoing" in connection with its bid, and said it was consulting lawyers and "urgently seeking clarification from FIFA" about the alleged Valcke comments.

Valcke, who is not accused of ethics violations and is not under any investigation, admitted sending the email, but said his comments had been taken out of context.

Warner and Bin Hammam both deny wrongdoing.

CNN's David Wilkinson, Ben Wyatt, James Montague and Aaron Akin contributed to this report.

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Samsung to stick with Google for its tablets (AFP)

SEOUL (AFP) – Samsung Electronics will depend on Google's Android mobile-device software to run future versions of its tablet computers, a senior Samsung official said in an interview published Tuesday.

"We'll continue to work with Android on future tablets," J.K. Shin, head of the South Korean giant's mobile division, told The Wall Street Journal.

Samsung Electronics is the world's second-largest cellphone maker after Finland's Nokia but trails Apple's iPhone and iPad in smartphones and tablets.

However, the Android system has boosted its smartphone business and Samsung hopes to do the same with tablets.

The iPad surprised competitors with the success of its launch early last year. Samsung responded by choosing Android for its tablets and introduced the seven-inch (17.8 centimetre) Galaxy Tab in October 2010 to take on Apple.

Samsung will launch new versions of the Galaxy Tab this summer in an 8.9-inch and 10.1-inch model. Both will run the latest version of Android, known as Honeycomb.

Despite Apple's status as a major customer for Samsung components, the two companies are embroiled in lawsuits.

The US firm sued its South Korean rival, claiming it copied the look and feel of the iPhone and iPad. Samsung launched its own suits, alleging that Apple violated patents covering Samsung's cellphone transmission technologies.

"We didn't copy Apple's design," Shin told The Wall Street Journal. "We have used many similar designs over the past years and it (Apple's allegation) will not be legally problematic."

Samsung expects its tablet shipments to rise about fivefold this year to 7.5 million. Market data provider IHS iSuppli forecast in April that Apple's iPad shipments would reach 39.7 million this year.

"Android is the fastest-growing platform and the market direction is headed toward Android so we're riding the wave," said Younghee Lee, senior vice president of sales and marketing.

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Govt: Iran denies Merkel air access

A plane carrying German Chancellor Angela Merkel was denied flyover permission by Iran for several hours.Angela Merkel is forced to circle for two hours when Iran says she can't fly over its territoryShe finally gets permission and continues to India

Berlin (CNN) -- Iran denied a plane carrying German Chancellor Angela Merkel permission to fly through its airspace, forcing the aircraft to circle in Turkish airspace for two hours, German government spokeswoman Elke Ramelow told CNN Tuesday.

Merkel was finally allowed to fly over Iran en route to India, Ramelow said, adding that Tehran had given no explanation.

The German government had confirmed overflight rights beforehand, Ramelow said.

There was no immediate Iranian comment on the incident.

Merkel was in India on Tuesday as part of an Asian tour.

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Belfast Celebrates the Centenary of the 'Titanic' Launch (

One hundred years ago on Tuesday, the Titanic - then the largest and most luxurious ship in the world - slid down the greased slipways from her building berth and into the waters of Victoria Channel in Belfast Harbor. It was a moment of enormous pride and emotion for the men who had built her, and the euphoria of the cheering crowds was reflected in contemporary accounts of the launch. "If the circumstances under which the launch took place can be accepted as an augury of the future," said one Belfast newspaper, "the Titanic should be a huge success." John Parkinson's father Frank worked on the ship and watched as the great liner was launched. "I remember asking him, 'How can a ship that big stay up in the water?'" said Parkinson. "My father's response was instant: 'Johnny, that ship will always stay up in the water.'"

But less than a year later, on the night of April 14, 1912, the Titanic's maiden voyage ended in disaster when the ship sank to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. The iceberg she struck ripped a 300-ft.-long (90 m) gash in her steel hull, and the vast inrush of water took her down, resulting in the deaths of 1,517 people. Back in Belfast, shipyard worker Frank Parkinson broke down and sobbed when he heard the news. (See a brief history of the Titanic's discovery.)

Before the world commemorates the centennial of the Titanic's sinking next year, Belfast has decided to celebrate the ship's launch, to remind people - including those in Belfast itself - of the city's ship-building legacy. As maritime historian and Titanic expert Michael McCaughan notes, the ship was built to the highest standards of safety. "She was at the pinnacle of naval architecture and marine engineering," says McCaughan. "With her double bottom and system of bulkheads with 16 virtually watertight compartments, she was designed to be her own lifeboat in the event of an accident."

The fact that the Titanic was a feat of engineering is often overshadowed by the ship's terrible end. For many years after the sinking, the fate of the Titanic was a taboo subject in the city where she was built. John Andrews, the great-nephew of Thomas Andrews, chief designer of the Titanic, says the disaster was never spoken of in his family "because it was such a terrible tragedy. It wasn't talked about in Belfast either ... There was always this sense of shame." Ian Frost's grandfather Anthony Wood Frost - known as Artie - was a member of the Guarantee Group, an elite troubleshooting team of engineers who accompanied the Titanic on her maiden voyage. The younger Frost also remembers his family's silence about the ship. "When the Titanic sank, it was terrible for my grandmother, very painful," he says. "She never really spoke about it again. Her youngest child was only 2 at the time, and it was days before she found out whether Artie had survived or not." It soon emerged that all the members of the Guarantee Group had perished. (See new images of the Titanic's wreckage.)

But in Belfast today, the residual sense of shame about the disaster is fading, to be replaced with a more confident, commercially minded attitude and a renewed pride in the city's extraordinary maritime history. As historian McCaughan notes, "The Titanic is now being celebrated in her homeland as an important agent of economic, social and cultural regeneration." The city is holding a range of events, readings and tours to celebrate the centenary of the launch, and work is well under way on the Titanic Signature Building, an eye-catching new visitor attraction that tells the ship's story and showcases the history of shipbuilding and seafaring in Belfast. Costing $160 million and designed to establish Belfast as the home of the Titanic, it is a must-visit destination on the international Titanic pilgrimage trail.

"There is so much to be proud of," says Una Reilly, chair of the Belfast Titanic Society. "In celebrating the launch of the Titanic, we're not celebrating a piece of steel, we're celebrating the achievements, the craftsmanship of the workers. The centenary of the launch is an opportunity to get a different story about the Titanic out." Not everyone is comfortable with making Belfast synonymous with the Titanic. After all, she is a potent global symbol of tragedy and the shipwreck of dreams. But enthusiasts insist that what happened to the Titanic was not the fault of the men who made her. "The succession of elementary errors that took place on the ship's maiden voyage - people not paying attention to each other, not paying attention to messages coming through on the wireless - these mistakes were the reason the Titanic sank," says Andrews of the ship his great-uncle designed. "There was nothing wrong with the ship herself." (See if bacteria could destroy the Titanic's remains.)

Which may be true. But there is still the fact that although there were 2,201 people on board, the Titanic had only enough lifeboat capacity for 1,178. "There was no effective lifesaving Plan B to prevent the passengers and crew perishing in the freezing waters of the North Atlantic," says McCaughan. And it was that one simple oversight that ultimately turned the Titanic from the greatest ship in the world to a byword for disaster.

See if the Titanic steered into the iceberg.

See the Titanic in the top 10 clashes at sea.

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‘Free’ New York Times Twitter feed returns from ‘vacation’ (The Cutline)

A week after it looked to be shut down for good, @FreeNYTimes, a Twitter feed offering links to New York Times articles for followers looking to circumvent the paper's online paywall, is back up and running.

"Our server had a major outage and I was traveling and busy with work," the feed's anonymous operator wrote in an e-mail to The Cutline. "Hopefully our followers were not too inconvenienced by our downtime and were able to stay within their 20-article per month limit."

The feed--which uses the Times' public application programming interface, ie. the software that coverts online copy into feeds -- had stopped publishing links to articles on May 19, but returned over the weekend.

A spokeswoman for the Times told The Cutline last week that the apparent shutdown was not the result of any legal threats by the paper.

In March, when the @FreeNYTimes account was created, the Times asked Twitter to disable the feed, claiming it violated the paper's trademark. But when the feed removed the "T" symbol from its Twitter icon, the Times relented and the account continued on--until the recent outage.

"If anything," its operator added, "maybe we saved them from more inane rants from Bill Keller," the Times executive editor who has lately been popping off about how Twitter has destroyed the national attention span.

(Photo illustration by The Cutline)

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Will you let your unborn baby use your iPhone to pick its own name? (Yahoo! News)

We've known for a while that technology buffs are popping up at younger and younger ages, but an iPhone app designed for unborn babies is a whole new concept. Kick to Pick is a 99 cent iPhone app meant to let your still-developing child pick its own name before making his or her debut.

To use the app you must first place your smartphone on a baby bump, preferably when the young one is feeling rambunctious. As the app scrolls through a list of baby names, it detects the slightest kicks using the iPhone's internal accelerometers. A kick monitor is displayed on the screen and will inform you when a kick is detected. Small to medium kicks will not count as "picks," but larger movements will, stopping the name scroll and showing you what the unborn baby has chosen.

There are thousands of names included, but if you'd like to limit your youngster's choice to more modern names — and prevent monikers like "Almond Algernon" from popping up — you can customize the list to your liking. The app is just a buck on the iTunes App Store, but whether it will spark a revolution of near-random baby naming — as opposed to just going with whatever the Twilight movies offer — remains to be seen.

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Genocide suspect Mladic is extradited after appeal fails

NEW: Ratko Mladic's extradition appeal is rejected His lawyer says Mladic would not be able to participate in a trialHe has been joking, the prosecutor saysMladic is wanted on charges including genocide

Belgrade, Serbia (CNN) -- Bosnian Serb genocide suspect Ratko Mladic lost an appeal against extradition and will be sent to an international tribunal to face charges, prosecutor Vladimir Vukcevic said on Serbian television Tuesday.

Mladic's lawyer said earlier that he expected to learn Tuesday whether the former Bosnian Serb general will get new medical exams. Lawyer Milos Saljic argued that Mladic would not be able to participate in a trial at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia because of his ill health.

Saljic wants Mladic examined by specialists "who can investigate his specific needs," including a gastroenterologist, cardiologist, psychiatrist and neurologist.

Mladic, 69, is wanted by the tribunal in connection with the massacre of nearly 8,000 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica in 1995, among other charges. He was captured Thursday after more than 15 years in hiding.

The court has already ruled Mladic is fit to stand trial.

Saljic is also applying for Mladic's unpaid pension from the years when he was in hiding, he said, saying he was acting on behalf of Mladic's family.

Chief prosecutor Vladimir Vukcevic denied Monday that Mladic was in poor health, saying that he was "lively and joking," and had asked for Russian classics to read. He said Mladic would be sent to The Hague within days if his extradition appeal fails.

Mladic's son, Darko, told an ultranationalist rally Sunday that that his father is sick.

"He needs medical treatment that he is not getting," the younger Mladic said.

He described his father as "a freedom fighter," and said he had "defended his own nation, defended his people, which was his job."

The younger Mladic called on protesters to keep the demonstration peaceful on Sunday, but protesters clashed with Serbian police at the demonstration.

Nearly 20 people were injured in the violence -- seven police and 12 civilians -- according to police. They said they made more than 100 arrests.

The Serbian Radical Party held its protest Sunday in front of Serbia's parliament building.

Mladic gave himself up without a fight Thursday, despite having two handguns, according to Rasim Ljajic, the government minister in charge of searching for fugitive suspected war criminals.

Officials located Mladic in a village called Lazarevo, north of the Serbian capital, after culling information from his former comrades, those who supported him financially and his close family members, Ljajic said.

It is not clear what source led investigators to the former military commander.

His arrest clears a major hurdle that once stood between Serbia and its long-awaited entrance into the European Union, but the move could also usher in political backlash from the country's electorate, some of whom consider Mladic a hero.

The massacre at Srebrenica, which sparked international outcry and preceded a NATO bombing campaign, is now remembered as the worst atrocity in Europe since World War II.

Mladic is accused of presiding over the five-day slaughter in July 1995, where Muslim men and boys were systematically executed in what was described at the U.N. war crimes tribunal as "the triumph of evil."

Mladic's forces encircled the town, a U.N.-declared "safe area" where thousands of Bosnian Muslims had sought refuge, allegedly conducting wholesale slaughter and rape, despite the presence of a few hundred lightly armed Dutch U.N. peacekeepers charged with protecting the area's residents and its refugees.

The former general is considered the last of the fugitive war criminal suspects in the region, following the capture of Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic and former Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic, who died in jail in 2006 during his trial at The Hague.

A medical team has determined that Mladic is healthy enough to be extradited to face a war crimes tribunal, a court spokeswoman in Belgrade said Friday.

While the war crimes suspect suffers from several chronic conditions, the team said there are no immediate problems barring a move.

This comes after five doctors examined Mladic Thursday night, according to Saljic, the lawyer.

CNN's Nic Robertson and Ivan Watson contributed to this report.

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Blade servers and convergence pick up steam (InfoWorld)

San Francisco – Last week, IDC released the latest version of its Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker. Above the fold, you'll find news that the server market is continuing to heat up in a very big way. For the first time in more than two years, all sectors of the server market have posted year-over-year growth in the same quarter (Q1 2011), representing aggregate growth of 12.1 percent to $11.9 billion. This indicates a significant loosening of the corporate purse strings as it relates to server infrastructure purchases.

However, there were several interesting observations below the fold that may signal a significant shift in the enterprise storage and network infrastructure spheres. Chief among them is the significant uptick in the x86-based blade market -- nearly doubling the revenue growth figures posted by the server market as a whole. In fact, over 20 percent of investments made in x86 server hardware went to blades.

With more than 50 percent of the blade server market, HP's c-Class blade offerings have remained very popular. However, readers who have always thought of Cisco as a networking company may be shocked to realize that increasing demand for Cisco's UCS blade platform has moved the company to third place with a tad less than 10 percent of the market share -- a fairly amazing feat given how little time UCS has been on the market. However, it should be noted that Cisco's introductory pricing on UCS has been fantastically aggressive, so it will be interesting to see if it can keep up this pace as time goes on.

Part and parcel to all but the smallest blade deployment is heavy use of network convergence. Buying a high-density blade chassis only to then equip it with a multitude of pass-through modules and do the network aggregation somewhere else rarely makes sense, either financially or from an operational management standpoint. The fewer external network ports you end up burning and the less hardware you need, the better. As a result, many organizations' first experience with network convergence, or maybe even 10Gbps networking, also happens to be when they bought their first blade chassis.

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75 bodies found in Air France wreckage

The remains have not been identified, a French relative saysThe recovery more than doubles the number of bodies found since the 2009 crashAir France 447 plunged into the ocean, killing 228 people

Paris (CNN) -- Seventy-five additional bodies have been recovered from the wreckage of an Air France plane that crashed off the coast of Brazil two years ago, more than doubling the number of remains that have been found, the vice-president of the French victims' association told CNN Tuesday.

The remains have not yet been identified, Robert Soulas said.

Air France 447 plunged into the Atlantic Ocean on June 1, 2009, killing all 228 people aboard. The bulk of the wreckage was found this year after a search by robot submarines of an underwater mountain range.

Many bodies were still in the fuselage, investigators said at the time. Only about 50 bodies were recovered in the days following the crash.

Soulas got the news from a French government liaison appointed to deal with families of victims, he said.

"Personally, I would have preferred to leave the bodies of our loved ones on the seafloor," he added, repeating his long-held view.

The Brazilian national news agency Agencia Brasil reported Tuesday that Nelson Faria Marinho, head of the Brazilian victims organization, said that with the latest recovery, the number of bodies found since the accident now totals 127.

Details of the doomed plane's last minutes only began to emerge last week as French air accident investigators studied data recorders recovered from the wreck earlier this year.

The Airbus A330 plummeted 38,000 feet in just three minutes and 30 seconds amid conflicting information that may have led the pilots to make bad decisions, France's Bureau of Investigation and Analysis (BEA) said Friday.

The pilots got conflicting air speed readings in the minutes leading up to the crash, according to an interim report. The aircraft climbed to 38,000 feet when "the stall warning was triggered and the airplane stalled," the report says.

Aviation experts are asking why the pilots responded to the stall by pulling the nose up instead of pushing it down to recover.

Miles O'Brien, a pilot and aviation analyst, said: "You push down on the wheel to gain air speed, perhaps they (pilots) were getting information that the air speed was too high. Pulling the nose up will exacerbate an aerodynamic stall."

The speeds displayed on the left primary flight display were "inconsistent" with those on the integrated standby instrument system (ISIS), the report says.

The aircraft experienced some "rolling" before stalling and then descending rapidly at 10,912 feet (3,300 meters) per minute.

At the time of the descent, the two co-pilots and captain were in the aircraft cockpit.

All 228 people aboard the Airbus A330 Flight 447 from Rio de Janeiro to Paris were killed on June 1, 2009.

The pilots lost contact with air traffic controllers while flying across an area of the Atlantic Ocean known for constant bands of severe turbulence.

Air crash investigators at the Paris-based BEA have been working on the theory that the speed sensors, known as pitot tubes or probes, malfunctioned because of ice at high altitude.

CNN's Thair Shaikh contributed to this report.

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Intel taps into new computing at Taiwan show (AP)

TAIPEI, Taiwan – Intel Corp. is touting a hybrid laptop 0.8 inches (20 mm) thick with sleek tablet computing features and ultra-sharp visual images that it hopes will create a market bridging traditional PCs and new devices.

The laptop also represents what the U.S. technology giant promises its latest generation of processors will be able to deliver by 2012, when they power new computers produced by companies like Taiwan's AsusTek Computer Inc.

"Computing is taking many forms," Intel executive vice president Sean Maloney said Tuesday at the opening of Taipei's Computex, the world's second-largest computing show.

He said that by the end of 2012, Intel aims to shift 40 percent of consumer laptops to its "Ultrabook" model, a new category of thin and light mobile computers.

Like many other tech companies, Intel is under immense pressure from Apple Inc., whose iPhones and iPads have swept through global markets with the force of a hurricane and show no signs of slowing.

Maloney described the Ultrabook as a laptop-tablet hybrid, featuring touch screens and instant log on, all with a price of less than $1,000.

The projected thickness of the new Intel-powered device would make it the sleekest laptop in the marketplace after Apple's MacBook Air 15" model, which ranges from .11 to .68 inches.

The devices will be based on Intel's "Ivy Bridge," a new generation of chips made with 22 nanometer manufacturing technology and the 3-D transistor the company unveiled early in May. It is slated to be on the market by 2012, Intel said.

The new transistor, with increased density, will make more powerful computing devices, it said.

Also by 2012, a new Intel chip designed for tablets and smartphones, named "Medfield," will be launched. It will give the mobile devices longer use-time, advanced imaging and more power efficiency, the company said.

Intel general manager for the Asia-Pacific region Navin Shenoy acknowledged the market is experiencing significant changes with "the explosion of smartphones and tablets."

"The industry is in constant change," he said. "We're more and more like the fashion industry. Nothing sticks forever."

"We win when we go after and create new markets," he said.

AsusTek is among the Taiwanese computer makers which have pledged to collaborate with Intel.

With the advent of tablets, "the whole industry is reshuffling, including the microprocessors and including operating systems," said AsusTek Chairman Jonney Shih.

"The boundaries between notebooks, tablets and smartphones are blurring," he told a news conference Monday. Laptops "have to evolve quickly to respond" and become "ultra-thin, ultra-light and ultra-responsive."

Also at Computex, Google Inc. pushed its Chromebook notebook, which is based on its web-browsing-oriented Chrome operating system — an up-and-coming rival in a field long dominated by Microsoft Corp.

Google is partnering with Intel and has engaged South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co. and Taiwan's Acer Inc. to produce the Chromebooks, set to go on sale in June.

Google's Senior Vice President Sundar Pichai said the company has set up a center in Taipei to try to bring more manufacturing partners onboard, but declined to give specifics on his expectations for Chromebook's market share.

"Today my only goal is to make sure we deliver Chromebooks and make customers happy," he said. "That's the only criteria. Focus on quality of experience for consumers rather than quantity."


Associated Press writer Debby Wu contributed to this report.

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Two new tablets unveiled ahead of top Asia IT fair (AFP)

TAIPEI (AFP) – Two electronic firms unveiled new tablet computers in Taipei Monday, on the eve of Asia's biggest IT trade fair, as they try to get a slice of a lucrative market dominated by Apple's iPad.

As thousands of industry delegates prepared for the Computex Taipei fair US firm ViewSonic and Taiwan's Shuttle Inc showed off their latest innovations.

ViewSonic, a visual technology firm based in California, introduced what it said is the world's first tablet that is equipped with both Windows 7 and Google's Android platforms.

"While iPad users are aimed for entertainment, our new machine has functions more than that," Kai Wang, a ViewSonic product manager, told AFP during a news conference on the eve of the five-day event.

Kai said the ViewPad 10 Pro will be a simple transition for people who are already used to Microsoft's operation system, adding that he expects much of its customer base to come from those who already use netbooks.

The new tablet, weighing slightly more than 830 grams, will hit the Taiwan market in June and elsewhere in the Asia Pacific in July, with a price tag of up to $799.

IT firm Shuttle Inc from Taipei, meanwhile, showed off its low-priced gadget aimed at the student market.

On unveiling the Shuttle V08, company manager Donald Chen told journalists: "It's true iPad is popular, but it is impossible for Apple to take the world's entire tablet market. There is still room for some tailor-made tablet developers."

With anti-dust and waterproof characteristics, its tablet weighs only 650 grams and is slated to cost just $200.

"Can you see how big the market will be as long as competitors can grab up to a 30 percent share of the global tablet market?" Chen said.

Worldwide sales of tablet computers are forecast to hit 50 million units this year and double to 100 million in 2012, said Chang Li from the Taipei Computer Association, which co-hosts the annual trade fair.

Computex Taipei, which runs from Tuesday until Saturday, is the biggest information technology and communications trade show in Asia and attracts thousands of exhibitors from around the world.

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Steve Jobs to deliver Apple keynote next week (AP)

NEW YORK – Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs will take a break from medical leave to deliver the keynote speech at next week's Apple conference, the company said Tuesday.

Apple shares rose $5.49, or 1.6 percent, to $342.90 after rising as high as $344.09 earlier in the session on the news.

Jobs went on medical leave in January for unspecified reasons, handing over day-to-day control to chief operating officer Tim Cook. Jobs has remained involved in larger decisions at the company, and demonstrated the new iPad model at a news conference in March.

Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference kicks off Monday in San Francisco. The keynote speech will feature Apple's new Mac software, Lion, and the next version of Apple's iPhone and iPad software, the company said.

Apple said the keynote will also feature an "iCloud" service, but didn't explain what the service will do. Apple has been in talks with all four major recording companies on a music service that will allow users to stream songs stored on remote computer servers, presumably to an array of portable Apple-made devices, a person familiar with the matter said recently. The person was not authorized to speak publicly on the deals and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Such a service would give users a wide array of music on-the-go, without having to worry about limited storage space and the need to physically connect different devices to transfer songs.

The June developers' conference has in years past been the opportunity for Apple to reveal the year's new iPhone model, ahead of a retail launch a few weeks later. But this year, analysts are speculating that the new iPhone won't arrive until the fall. Apple launched a version of the iPhone 4 for Verizon's network in February, and a June-July release of a new model could disappoint new owners of that phone.

The brief statement Tuesday did not mention any new hardware.

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Activision bets on online play for 'Call of Duty' (AP)

NEW YORK – Activision knows it's more fun to blast on-screen enemies into oblivion with friends, so this fall it's launching an online service for its "Call of Duty" games that's part Facebook, part player matchmaker and part organized sports.

It's the logical next step for Activision Blizzard Inc., whose "Call of Duty" franchise has enjoyed unprecedented success. The latest title, "Black Ops," has sold 22 million copies worldwide since its November launch. More than 7 million people play every day online.

The service officially launches on Nov. 8 with the next "Call of Duty" installment, Activision said Tuesday. A test version will be available before that, but Activision isn't saying when.

Two years in the making by a specially-created game studio called Beachhead, the service, "Call of Duty: Elite," lets players form groups, compete by skill level or interest, share statistics like baseball fans, and create video clips of their best "Call of Duty" moments, among other things.

"Elite" will be accessible from game consoles, computers and smartphones. It's as if "social networks and organized sports had a baby and they gave that baby a flamethrower," as Activision puts it.

Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing, calls it a response to the rise of social networking.

"A way to think about this — the NFL used to be something you could only interact with on Sunday. Then, things like fantasy football and ESPN started surrounding it," Hirshberg said.

Online services are also the next step for the broader video game industry, which must figure out how to offer players experiences that go beyond the $60 video game discs that, "Call of Duty" aside, have seen bumpy sales as people flock to cheaper games from "Angry Birds" to "FarmVille."

Activision is not saying what it plans to charge for access to "Elite," though it's likely to be in the form of monthly or yearly subscriptions possibly combined with the sale of virtual items and extra content for the games. Hirshberg stressed that the company won't start charging for anything currently available to "Call of Duty" players for free, such as the ability to play multiplayer games.

Activision, whose Blizzard arm publishes the "World of Warcraft" online game series, is betting that the future of video games lies beyond discs in so-called "digital content." That includes everything from downloadable chapters (called "map packs") in "Call of Duty" to monthly "World of Warcraft" subscriptions, along with games on Facebook and mobile devices. While sales of physical video games are on the decline save the biggest blockbusters, more people than ever are playing games in some form, especially online and on mobile devices.

"Call of Duty" has a single-player component, but that pales in comparison with the enjoyment gamers like Dave Strand, 28, get out of playing the game's multiplayer feature, which can extend the playtime of "Call of Duty" by days, weeks or even months. More than 30 million people play "Call of Duty" online, proof that video games are no longer a solitary pastime.

"It's always better to play with someone you know, have one friendly voice." said Strand, who works for a telecommunications company in Chicago. "As opposed to random kids who when they die they just scream in profanity."

Strand said he plays a couple of days a week, with a group of like-minded gamers, found through an online video game forum, who like to practice "good sportsmanship, win or lose."

As for a digital platform for "Call of Duty," Strand said if it was "like a buck or two a month, I'd think about it." He already pays for the Xbox Live online service which now costs $60 a year, and shells out $15 for each new "Call of Duty" map pack.

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Apple's Jobs to unveil 'Lion' operating system (AFP)

SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) – Ailing chief executive Steve Jobs will return from sick leave to unveil Apple's latest generation of software next week, the firm announced Tuesday.

The 56-year-old cancer survivor will present Apple's new operating system, dubbed "Lion," at a developers conference in San Francisco on June 6.

Jobs went on leave in January, his third medical absence since 2004, but has retained his title of chief executive at Apple.

He underwent an operation for pancreatic cancer in 2004 and received a liver transplant in 2009, but Apple has not released any details about his latest health issues.

"Lion" will be the eighth major iteration of Apple's operating system, "Mac OS."

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Mubarak too ill for hospital transfer

Mubarak is expected to be charged with consenting to a plan to kill protesters in Cairo's Tahrir Square on January 25.Hosni Mubarak is considered too ill to be transferred to a prison hospital, prosecutors sayMubarak was recently examined by a medical teamMubarak could face trial in the killings of protesters and wasting public fundsMubarak stepped down as Egypt's ruler on February 11

(CNN) -- Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is too ill to be transferred to that country's Tora prison hospital, Egyptian prosecutors said Tuesday.

The prosecutors concluded that the hospital couldn't accommodate Mubarak's needs after the former president was examined by a medical team.

It was not immediately clear if another prison facility in the country will be able to house the deposed leader.

Mubarak and his two sons are currently facing a criminal trial for the deaths of protesters and wasting public money, according to the Egyptian general prosecutor's office.

Mubarak, who was forced from office in February, is expected to be charged with consenting to a plan to kill protesters in Cairo's Tahrir Square on January 25. He allegedly ordered police officers to use live ammunition while they fired into a crowd.

The former president, who denies the charges, could be executed if he is convicted of ordering any killings, Egyptian Justice Minister Mohamed Abdelaziz al-Juindy said earlier this month.

Mubarak has been held in a military hospital in Sharm el-Sheikh since mid-April, after complaining of heart palpitations and blood pressure problems. But Aly Hassan, a judicial analyst affiliated with the ministry, recently said Egyptian courts can proceed with a case if a defendant is in poor health.

"In previous cases, suspects appeared in court with life-support machines, so Mubarak's health now does not mean that he is paralyzed," Hassan said. "If he has heart problems and doctors indicate improvement, then he can appear in court for several hours."

Mubarak stepped down as Egypt's leader on February 11, after an 18-day uprising against his nearly three decades of iron-fisted rule. He and his family, as well as former officials in his government, have been under investigation ever since.

Mubarak's attorney, Farid El Deeb, told CNN Monday the former president is "very sad and sorry" about the allegations made against him, but has no regrets.

El Deeb denied that Mubarak gave any kind of authorization to use force or live ammunition against demonstrators calling for his removal.

The attorney also claimed Mubarak is now in "very bad health," suffering from a serious heart problem and a resurgence of colon cancer.

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Arrest after Russian journalist killing

Russian human rights activists attend a rally in honour of slain journalist Anna Politkovskaya in Moscow on October 7, 2010.Anna Politkovskaya, a critic of the Kremlin, was killed in her apartment building in 2006Rustam Makhmudov will be taken to Moscow for questioningMakhmudov has been on the international wanted list since May 2008

Moscow (CNN) -- A suspect in the killing of Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya in 2006 was arrested in Chechnya on Tuesday, Russia Investigative Committee told CNN.

Rustam Makhmudov was detained in Chechnya's Achkoi-Martan district, according to Russia's Interfax news agency. He will be transported to Moscow for questioning, the committee said.

The arrest was conducted by the Federal Security Service and Russia's Interior Ministry and was facilitated by law enforcement in Belgium where the suspect had been hiding earlier, the committee said.

A fierce critic of the Kremlin, Politkovskaya was found shot dead in her apartment building while she was working on a series of reports about Chechnya for Novaya Gazeta, an independent, Moscow-based newspaper.

Lawyer Murad Musayev told Interfax that videos and DNA tests will prove Makhmudov's innocence.

The slain journalist's lawyers were not impressed by the arrest.

"We do not consider the detention of the perpetrator of the crime to be a breakthrough because the investigators have long been suspecting Rustam Makhmudov of involvement in this crime. I can't thank the investigators for his arrest because it should have been done four years ago," lawyer A. Stavitskaya told Interfax.

Politkovskaya was shot dead in an elevator of her apartment bloc in Moscow on the afternoon of October 7, 2006, as she was going home.

Ibragim and Jabrail Makhmudov -- Rustam Makhmudov's brothers -- and two former law enforcement officers were suspects in the case.

A Moscow district court acquitted them in February 2009 because of lack of evidence.

The Russian Supreme Court repealed the acquittal and ordered the prosecution to re-investigate the case.

Investigators say they believe it was Rustam Makhmudov who pulled the trigger on Politkovskaya. He was on the run at the time of the killing for another crime he was charged with earlier. He has been on the international wanted list since May 2008.

CNN's Maxim Tkachenko contributed to this report.

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Bank of Canada holds rates (Reuters)

OTTAWA (Reuters) – The Bank of Canada warned on Tuesday that it would eventually have to lift borrowing costs if the economy continues expanding, introducing some hawkish language that caught many in the market off guard.

The statement by the central bank -- which kept its key interest rate unchanged at 1 percent -- drove the Canadian dollar and short-term bond yields higher as traders increased bets on rate hikes later this year.

"To the extent that the expansion continues and the current material excess supply in the economy is gradually absorbed, some of the considerable monetary policy stimulus currently in place will be eventually withdrawn, consistent with achieving the 2 percent inflation target. Such reduction would need to be carefully considered," the central bank said in a statement.

The markets interpreted "eventually" to mean not the next rate decision in July but rather September or -- even more likely -- October or December.

Previous statements had only said that any future hikes "would need to be carefully considered."

"It doesn't sound like the central bank is gearing up for a rate hike in July but the warning that rate hikes will eventually come suggests that we'll see a few hikes before the end of the year," said CIBC chief economist Avery Shenfeld.

"Markets had priced out nearly all of the risks of a hike not only in July but September as well. I think the bank was uncomfortable with the market starting to assume that it was going to wait forever to begin hiking."

Overnight index swaps, which trade based on expectations for the key central bank policy rate, showed investors see less than a 5 percent chance of a rate hike in July.

But swaps traders did increase the probability that the central bank will tighten at some point after July. The central bank has scheduled policy announcements in September, October and December.

The central bank became the first in the Group of Seven advanced economies to tighten monetary policy following the global financial crisis, hiking three times from June-September last year but pausing since then due to the weak global recovery.


The bank now sees underlying inflation as only "relatively subdued" rather than "subdued" as in previous statements, but it did not change its overall outlook for inflation.

"It's a subtle change. And I think that's the theme here. They certainly didn't bang us over the head with any obvious changes, but there were a few very subtle shifts in the language," said BMO Capital Markets deputy chief economist Doug Porter.

"I do think they are eventually preparing the ground for rate hikes, but there's very little here to suggest that the bank has had a big change of heart. It's likely to be some time yet before they start raising rates."

Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney has said in the past he does not want Canadian rates to diverge too far from U.S. rates, which are not likely to rise in the near future, but he also has to guard against overheating in Canada.

The bank statement repeated that the persistent strength of the Canadian dollar "could create even greater headwinds for the Canadian economy" and dampen inflation.

And temporary supply chain disruptions from Japan will sharply restrain growth in the second quarter. But it expects this to be unwound in subsequent quarters.

It said the U.S. economy continued to grow modestly and European growth was maintaining momentum, but risks to peripheral European economies had increased.

The Canadian dollar climbed as high as C$0.9653 to the U.S. currency, or $1.0359, up from C$0.9723 to the U.S. dollar, or $1.0285, immediately before the Bank of Canada statement. It was the Canadian dollar's strongest level since May 20.

Short-dated bond prices, which are most sensitive to the interest rate outlook, deepened losses after the Bank of Canada news.

(With additional reporting by Claire Sibonney, Ka Yan Ng and Solarina Ho in Toronto; Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)

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Sri Lanka video shows executions, abuse of corpses (AP)

GENEVA – A U.N. expert called Tuesday for Sri Lanka to investigate and file charges against soldiers shown in a graphic video shooting bound, blindfolded prisoners and abusing corpses in the final days of the country's 26-year civil war.

The U.N. expert, Christof Heyns, reviewed the 5-minute, 25-second video frame by frame with a team of technical and forensic specialists to determine its authenticity, and concluded that the video suggests there is enough evidence to open a war-crimes case. Sri Lanka has claimed the video is fake.

In the video, several men lie on a muddy track, bound and motionless. The camera cuts and another man is shown being forced to sit upright by a soldier in camouflage carrying a rifle. Another soldier steps up behind the seated prisoner and shoots him in the back of the head, point blank. The prisoner slumps sideways as the camera pans across the road revealing nine bodies, most of them naked, with gunshot wounds clearly visible despite the grainy quality of the footage.

The uniformed men then force another blindfolded prisoner down into the dirt. A gunshot rings out and he, too, jerks and collapses. Later, the camera focuses on a young man, his skull blown open. Soldiers stand over the half-dressed corpse of a woman, gloating.

Heyns, a South African law professor who is also the U.N.'s independent investigator on extrajudicial killings, said the footage provides solid evidence for a prosecution case.

"It's very rare that you have actual footage of people being killed," the former lawyer told The Associated Press. "This is different from CCTV. This is trophy footage."

The Sri Lankan government says the video is staged, an attempt by pro-Tamil Tiger groups to undermine its hard-won victory in the country's 1983-2009 civil war.

"We have proven beyond any doubt that this is not authentic," the director general of the government's Media Center for National Security, Lakshman Hulugalla, said on Monday. The U.N. panel says it unpicked Sri Lanka's claims and found them to be unsupported.

Heyns says the video shows "definitive war crimes" — believed to have taken place in May 2009 — that require both domestic and international proceedings to be launched.

"There is a prima facie case and it should now go to the next level," Heyns told the AP before screening the video for the first time to reporters in Geneva. "So far we haven't seen any concrete results on the domestic level," he added.

If Sri Lanka resists outside pressure to conduct a credible criminal investigation, referral to the International Criminal Court would be possible, Heyns said. This is unlikely as it would require approval by the U.N. Security Council, where Sri Lanka has a strong ally in China.

The United Nations estimates that between 80,000 and 100,000 people were killed in the war.

The final months of fighting in Sri Lanka were almost completely hidden from public view and international scrutiny. The government barred journalists, aid workers and human rights organizations from the northern section of the country where the fighting raged. As reports of abuses and widescale civilian deaths leaked out, government officials denied them and insisted they were doing everything possible to protect innocent lives.

At one point, after a government doctor in the battle zone reported that people were dying of starvation, a top Sri Lankan official dismissed the statement as absurd because there was no official autopsy report from the battlefield clinic.

After the war ended, the government insisted it had not shed a drop of civilian blood in the last months of fighting. A partial U.N. count showed at least 7,000 ethnic Tamil civilians killed in the last five months of the conflict.

Numerous U.N.-appointed officials have since concluded that both sides committed atrocities, and that the death toll may have been in the tens of thousands.

A recent U.N. report said Sri Lankan government forces deliberately targeted civilians and hospitals, and blocked food and medicine for hundreds of thousands of civilians trapped in the war zone. It also accused the Tamil Tigers of recruiting child soldiers and using civilians as human shields.

Sri Lanka has categorically rejected calls for an independent international probe into the allegations. Instead, it has established a national panel to investigate. Meanwhile, the government continues to celebrate its battlefield victory, hosting a three-day international defense seminar in Colombo this week to show foreign experts how it won the war.

The latest footage was obtained by Britain's Channel 4, which has so far shown only brief excerpts and an earlier, shorter video of the same events. Ben De Pear, head of foreign affairs for Channel 4 News, said the station chose to broadcast the footage after the U.N. experts helped it conclude that it is genuine.

The extended video will be part of an hourlong program examining atrocities committed by both government forces and Tamil Tiger fighters that Channel 4 plans to screen for the first time Friday at the United Nations in Geneva.


Ravi Nessman in New Delhi contributed to this report. Frank Jordans can be reached on Twitter at:

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County pays citizens for horizon dotted with wind turbines (Yahoo! News)

Sherman County, Oregon is home to farms like many in the United States, but the growers that dot the countryside are green in more ways than one. Along with crops and livestock, they farm wind, using the location's notoriously breezy skies to power massive turbines and generate electricity. The setup seems to be a winning formula for everyone involved, generating carbon-free electricity for neighboring cities as well as providing monetary gain for both the farmers and residents.

The county's 1,735 inhabitants took in $3 million in 2010 as a result of the new wind farming movement. Most of that money is split amongst the farmers who allow their land to be used for the towers, but the average residents also benefit. In compensation for having their horizon drastically changed by the turbines a€” which can affect property values in a big way a€” each head of household in Sherman County receives an annual check for $590.

The average landowner who allows a tower to be built on their property rakes in around $5,500 per turbine each year, and some large farms can house a dozen or more of the massive power generators. The turbines are typically quiet but not entirely silent and there are laws regarding how close they can be to other structures. But with checks of $50,000 or more coming in each year, you can see why many farmers are perfectly content with the change in scenery.

NY Times via Gizmodo

[Image credit: Carillv]

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Egypt's Mubarak unfit for prison move: prosecutor (Reuters)

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt's public prosecutor said on Tuesday that ousted President Hosni Mubarak was in no condition to be transferred to a prison hospital and would remain in a health facility in a Red Sea resort for the time being.

Mubarak, overthrown on February 11 after a popular uprising, has been detained since mid-April in a hospital in Sharm el-Sheikh, rather than in a prison medical center, after it was reported that he suffered heart problems during initial questioning.

A medical team determined that Mubarak should not be transferred "outside of Sharm el-Sheikh hospital at the current time and to hire a specialized medical team to oversee his treatment," the prosecutor said in a statement.

"The committee examined the patient in his intensive care room and found that he is clearly frail and depressed and cannot leave the bed without assistance," it said.

It added that the Torah prison hospital on Cairo's outskirts was "unsuitable for a patient in a critical condition."

Mubarak was ordered last week to stand trial for the killing of protesters, corruption and wasting public funds. The charges, which he has denied, include "premeditated killing," a crime which is punishable by death.

The timing of the illness meant he has not joined other former officials in jail and has fueled talk that he was getting special treatment from the army. The military now ruling Egypt deny this and say the case is in the hands of the judiciary.

The six-member medical team appointed by the prosecutor found Mubarak had low blood pressure, weak blood circulation to the brain resulting in frequent fainting and an irregular heartbeat, leaving him at risk of sudden heart attack, the statement said.

It noted he suffered from tumors in his gall bladder and pancreas, for which he has had operations in the past.

(Reporting by Dina Zayed; editing by Michael Roddy)

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Anthony trial enters 2nd week

(CNN) -- Cindy Anthony testified Tuesday, sometimes tearfully, of her efforts to rid her daughter's car of a terrible smell -- and her sadness at finding her granddaughter Caylee's favorite doll propped in the little girl's car seat.

On July 15, 2008, Cindy Anthony had not seen 2-year-old Caylee since June 16. She testified that she asked her daughter Casey Anthony about the little girl daily. Casey -- who she also had not seen -- gave her reason after reason why Caylee was unavailable, she said.

Caylee's skeletal remains were discovered in a wooded field in December 2008.

Casey Anthony, 25, is charged with seven counts, including first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse and misleading police in the death of her daughter. If convicted, she could face the death penalty.

Cindy Anthony said Tuesday she asked repeatedly to speak to Caylee by telephone. "I missed hearing her little voice," she testified.

She said in testimony Saturday and Tuesday that when she asked about her granddaughter, Casey Anthony always had a reason why the girl wasn't available, including work meetings, a car accident and sudden plans to hang out at a hotel with a wealthy suitor Cindy Anthony said she had long heard about but never met.

"There was always a reason I missed her," Cindy Anthony said.

She testified Tuesday she and her daughter had a heart-to-heart on July 3 about several issues, including that Casey Anthony had moved out of her parents' home without warning. Casey Anthony asked her mother for space to work out some things, Cindy Anthony testified. She said she "backed off" but continued to call daily asking if she could speak to Caylee.

On July 15, George and Cindy Anthony received a notice on their door. George Anthony picked up a certified letter from a tow yard, which said that Casey Anthony's Pontiac Sunfire -- registered to her parents -- had been there for a couple of weeks.

Cindy Anthony testified that her daughter had told her that the car was with her in Jacksonville, Florida, and she called her and told her "she had a lot of explaining to do." She asked her to come home.

After George Anthony drove the car home from the wrecker yard, Cindy Anthony, a nurse, said she smelled the car and asked, "What died?" She testified that she knew what human decomposition smelled like, but said it was just an expression and that she didn't really believe someone had died or decomposed in the car. She said that at the time she was satisfied that the smell was some garbage her husband said he found in the trunk.

But "the smell in the car was like something I had never -- it was pretty strong," she said.

After her husband left for work, Cindy Anthony said she retrieved her daughter's purse from the car, along with the doll. She broke into tears as she described finding the doll in Caylee's car seat, "like it was sitting where Caylee would have sat."

She tearfully recalled putting the doll on an ice chest in the garage and wiping its face and hands with a disinfecting wipe, then spraying its body and the interior of the car with Febreeze, a substance that helps eliminate odor. She said she also put a dryer sheet in the car.

Cindy Anthony also cried when photographs of the car seat and the doll were introduced into evidence, and when she testified about removing a toothbrush and other items from the little girl's backpack she found in the trunk.

"I went through and held some of Caylee's things, just because," she said.

Before testimony began Tuesday, Anthony's defense attorneys argued unsuccessfully to bar her brother, Lee Anthony, from the courtroom, saying he should not be able to listen to other testimony before he testifies. Defense attorneys previously were unsuccessful in barring Anthony's parents from the courtroom.

Prosecutors allege that Anthony used chloroform on her daughter, then suffocated her by putting duct tape over her nose and mouth.

Anthony's defense has claimed the little girl drowned in the Anthonys' pool on June 16, the day she was last seen, and that Anthony and her father panicked and kept the death a secret. George Anthony has denied that claim in testimony.

Anthony's defense attorney explains her behavior in June and July 2008 by saying she had been sexually abused as a child by her father -- and, to a lesser extent, her brother -- and was taught from a young age to hide her pain. George Anthony has also denied abusing his daughter in previous testimony.

Anthony has pleaded not guilty and denies harming her daughter or having anything to do with her disappearance. Defense attorney Jose Baez has said that once all the facts were known, it will become clear his client is innocent.

Despite what Anthony was telling her mother during the time Caylee was missing, testimony in the trial and evidence has showed she was still in Orlando, spending time with friends, staying with her boyfriend, going shopping and hitting nightclubs. Her former boyfriend and numerous friends and acquaintances have testified that she did not mention her daughter was missing. Instead, she insisted she was with a nanny, at the beach and other places.

Cindy Anthony testified her daughter was not answering her phone after the car was picked up July 15, so she contacted one of Casey Anthony's friends, Amy Huizenga. She picked Huizenga up at a mall and told her to take her to her daughter. She was directed to the home of Casey Anthony's then-boyfriend, Tony Lazzaro.

She convinced her daughter to leave with her and told her they were going to get Caylee, who Casey Anthony said was with the nanny. But she said Casey Anthony told her it wasn't a good idea for her to see Caylee and refused to direct her to where the child was. Cindy Anthony testified her daughter also didn't explain what had happened with her car. At one point, she testified, her daughter asked her to take her back to Lazzaro's and "I told her she wasn't going anywhere."

Later that night, Cindy Anthony notified police her granddaughter was missing. Her daughter told her that the nanny had kidnapped Caylee weeks ago, and that she had been looking for her on her own, authorities have said.

The prosecution

From the prosecution, the jurors have heard about an Anthony free of remorse who had an affinity for parties, drinking and sleepovers with men. During opening statements on May 24, the jury heard about how Anthony waited nearly 31 days before reporting Caylee missing.

During that period, she got a tattoo, participated in a "hot body" contest at an Orlando club and spent many nights at the apartment of her then-boyfriend Anthony Lazzaro, the prosecution said.

"No one else benefited from the death of Caylee Marie Anthony" said Assistant State Attorney Linda Drane-Burdick in her opening statements last week. "Caylee's death allowed Casey to live a good life, at least for those 31 days."

Prosecutors allege Anthony forced Caylee to inhale chloroform and then suffocated her by placing duct tape on the toddler's nose and mouth.

The defense

The defense painted a picture for jurors of a loving mother, whose dysfunctional family forced her to live in a state of denial. They argued the family held dark secrets, including that Anthony was sexually abused by her father and brother.

"It all began when Casey was 8 years old and her father came in and began to touch her inappropriately," Anthony's lead defense attorney, Jose Baez, said during his opening arguments Tuesday.

The defense says Caylee drowned in the family pool as the result of what Baez called "an accident that snowballed out of control."

He said Anthony's father, George, was privy to the accident and tried to cover up the drowning at Anthony's expense.

"As soon as Casey came around this corner and went back, she saw George holding Caylee in his arms," Baez said as he showed a diagram of the Anthony home and pool. "And shortly thereafter George began to yell at her, 'Look what you've done!'"

George Anthony was the first witness called after Baez's opening argument. He denied the molestation and any knowledge of the alleged drowning.

The witnesses

The prosecution team has brought in witnesses ranging from ex-boyfriends to women who partied with Anthony. But even those who knew the defendant seemed to describe two very different people.

When asked by prosecutors if Anthony's behavior changed after June 16, 2008 -- when Caylee was last seen -- some of the witnesses said Anthony was her usual self. She was friendly and upbeat, never mentioning that her daughter was missing and making excuses for the toddler's whereabouts, some of them testified.

When pressed by Baez, the same witnesses affirmed Anthony was a good mom with a strong bond with her daughter. During Friday's testimony, Mallory Parker, the fiancee of Anthony's brother Lee, broke down on the stand as she described the relationship between Anthony and Caylee as "amazing."

Anthony's father, George, recounted the day he retrieved her abandoned car from an Orlando tow yard. When pressed by Assistant State Attorney Jeff Ashton, the former police officer said the odor that came from his daughter's car smelled like a human corpse.

On Saturday, Anthony's mother, Cindy, recounted the answers Anthony gave her when questioned about Caylee's whereabouts.

Anthony told her Caylee was with a nanny while she was busy with work meetings, Cindy Anthony testified.

Anthony's demeanor

If the jurors are looking for answers in Anthony's face, they may come away empty-handed. While Anthony has broken down in court on several occasions, particularly when the subject turns to her relationship with Caylee, she is often stoic as she hears the recollections of the men and women who once made up her life.

On Saturday, Anthony was essentially stone-faced until a court recess in the middle of her mother's testimony. Then she was seen sobbing and speaking passionately to her lawyers. The defendant regained composure when her mother retook the stand.

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NYPD: Another financial figure accused of hotel sexual assault

New York (CNN) -- The chairman of a salt company who once headed an Egyptian bank was arrested Monday in New York, accused of sexually abusing an employee at a luxury hotel.

Mahmoud Abdel-Salam Omar is charged with sexual abuse, unlawful imprisonment, forcible touching and harassment, according to the New York Police Department.

The alleged incident took place Sunday -- a little more than two weeks after Dominique Strauss-Kahn, then chief of the International Monetary Fund, was accused of sexually assaulting and attempting to rape a housekeeping employee at another swank New York hotel. Strauss-Kahn's attorneys deny the allegations, and he has since stepped down from the IMF to focus on his defense.

Attorneys for ex-IMF chief say police leaks have tainted trial

Omar, 74, did not immediately make a public statement.

The New York Police Department said it was informed Monday of an incident at the Pierre Hotel in Manhattan. Police came to the hotel, where the alleged victim told them that at about 6 p.m. Sunday she went to Omar's room to drop off tissues he had requested. "Once inside the room the victim was sexually abused," police said.

A spokeswoman for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said prosecutors would not release any information until after Omar's arraignment, which could take place Tuesday.

The Pierre Hotel released a statement saying, "The Pierre's priority is the safety of our guests and staff. We take all complaints very seriously and investigate thoroughly. This incident has been formally reported to the New York Police Department and is under investigation. And we will fully comply with the investigation as requested."

Omar is chairman of El-Mex Salines Co. On its website, the firm describes itself as a subsidiary of Chemical Industries Holding Co., a chemical production company. It is "one of the oldest international companies in (the) salt industry," the website says.

A spokesman for El-Mex Salines said that Omar was head of the Bank of Alexandria 15 years ago.

El-Mex Salines had no immediate comment on the arrest.

The Bank of Alexandria was established in 1957 as an Egyptian joint stock company, according to its website. It was privatized in 2006.


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3 killed during clashes in Yemeni capital

NEW: An EU official denounces the Yemeni regime and "grave" human rights violationsAt least 23 people are reportedly killed this week in Taiz, a hub of anti-regime protests Security forces use bulldozers and fire to dismantle protesters' camps, witnesses say Regime spokesman: Forces were rescuing colleagues captured by protesters

Sanaa, Yemen (CNN) -- Three people were killed Tuesday during clashes in Taiz, a center of protests against the Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, according to a field hospital staff member and a youth leader.

Another 26 were injured by gunfire, said Yasser Nomeree, the hospital staffer, and Bushra Maktari, the youth leader. The Organizing Committee of the Youth Revolution said Republican Guards shot at demonstrators in downtown Taiz.

Meanwhile, fires raged in some areas of the Yemeni capital of Sanaa on Tuesday as clashes took place in seven parts of the city, according to eyewitnesses.

The al-Ahmar family -- which opposes the regime -- captured government buildings in the Hasaba neighborhood of Sanaa, according to eyewitnesses.

Hasaba is home to Sheikh Sadeq al-Ahmar, leader of the powerful al-Hashid tribe, whose forces oppose the government.

Government spokesman Tarek Shami said the al-Ahmar family "started occupying government buildings, therefore the government had to react."

Hundreds of loud explosions were heard Tuesday in Sanaa as tanks fired mortar shells and heavy artillery fire. Thick black smoke hung in the air as thousands of armed men clashed on city streets.

"The government has ended the cease-fire and started attacking," said Abdulqawi Qaisi, spokesman for the al-Ahmar family. "The tribes of Ahmar need to defend themselves."

Over the weekend, Shami said the government would halt all military action against the tribe for two days to allow mediators to broker a deal between the two sides.

The powerful al-Hashid tribe, which includes the al-Ahmar family, rose up against Saleh this month after the longtime leader backed out of a regionally brokered deal meant to ease him out of office and end months of demonstrations.

Catherine Ashton, foreign policy chief of the European Union, denounced the attacks in Taiz.

"I am shocked and condemn in the strongest terms the use of force and live ammunition against peaceful protesters in the city of Taiz," Ashton said in a statement Tuesday. "The continued repression by the Yemeni regime and grave violations of human rights and international humanitarian law cannot be accepted."

Ashton also called for the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to launch an independent assessment.

U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay denounced the "intensified use of force against anti-Government protesters," according to a statement from the office of the high commissioner Tuesday.

On Monday, security forces set fire to tents and tore through demonstrators' camps in Freedom Square in Taiz with bulldozers, an activist and eyewitnesses said.

The protest camp was virtually eliminated on Monday, according to Maktati. A field hospital was also dismantled, with the equipment taken away by troops, Maktati, the youth leader, said.

At least 70 tents had been burned down by security forces since late Sunday night, according to witnesses.

On Monday, security forces arrested youths and took them from the streets to an unknown location, Maktati said.

Abdu Ganadi, a government spokesman, said security forces were rescuing colleagues who had been captured and beaten by protesters.

"We did not attack the protesters," Ganadi said. "Reports are all exaggerated. Only two were killed."

He said protesters' tents were burned by people attacked by the protesters, and that tents that burned were empty.

Troops also used water cannons Monday to disperse thousands of protesters in Taiz. A day earlier, clashes left at least 20 people dead and 200 wounded, according to eyewitnesses and two medical officials who could not be named because of security concerns.

Maktati said the attacks would not stop their protests.

"Our revolution will not stop even if hundreds are killed every day," said Sameer Al-Samaee, a leading youth activist in Taiz. "Killing innocent civilians always leads to war crime charges, and that is what we are seeking for Saleh."

The nation's largest cell phone network was ordered to shut down Sunday, according to a senior official with the country's Communications Ministry who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

The SABAFON network was ordered shut down because of violations and unpaid fines over the last few years, the Communications Ministry official told CNN.

A management official with the SABAFON network, who also was not authorized to speak to the press, confirmed the shutdown. The official denied the government's allegations and said the move appeared to be a tactic to pressure members of the al-Ahmar family, including Hamid al-Ahmar -- the president's chief political enemy.

The official said members of the al-Ahmar family are majority shareholders in SABAFON, with the largest shareholder being Hamid al-Ahmar.

Saleh has resisted protests calling on him to step down after 33 years in power.

The U.S. Embassy in Sanaa has condemned what it called the "unprovoked and unjustified attack" on demonstrators in Taiz. It praised the protesters and called on Saleh "to move immediately on his commitment to transfer power."

The recent fighting has raised fears of a full-blown civil war in Yemen, an impoverished, arid and mountainous nation that has been a key U.S. ally in the battle against the al Qaeda terrorist network.

CNN's Mohammed Jamjoom contributed to this report.

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Sony promises full global PSN restoration this week (Digital Trends)

The dark times are nearly over. Sony is still working to win back the trust of its customers following the April hacking that left PlayStation Network, Qriocity and Sony Online Entertainment services shut down for a month and more than 100 million users with exposed personal information. The switch was flipped back to “ON” roughly two weeks ago, with limited service being restored across the company’s online networks. Today brings the news that all will be back to normal sometime this week.

Yes, we’ve hummed along to a similar tune from Sony a couple of times now, and been disappointed each time, but things have remained relatively stable these past two weeks and there’s no reason to believe that the company won’t be able to keep its promise this time. The news comes from a press release posted on the PlayStation Blog, which states that full PSN service will be restored for all regions — excluding Japan, Hong Kong and South Korea — by the end of this week.

Some amount of Qriocity service will be returning as well, with Music Unlimited coming back to PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable and PCs. More importantly for gamers, the restoration of service will also bring back access to the PlayStation Store, in-game purchases and code redemption.

“We have been conducting additional testing and further security verification of our commerce functions in order to bring the PlayStation Network completely back online so that our fans can again enjoy the first class entertainment experience they have come to love,” Sony boss Kaz Hirai said in the press release. “We appreciate the patience and support shown during this time.”

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E. coli outbreak spreads in Germany

Berlin (CNN) -- The outbreak of E. coli in Germany has killed several more people and sickened hundreds, authorities said Tuesday.

News reports citing local authorities reported 16 deaths linked to E. coli in some raw vegetables. CNN has confirmed at least 12 deaths.

As more people have died, the outbreak has shown itself to be spreading geographically as well. No longer contained in northern Germany, the outbreak has killed at least two people in the western part of the country.

One of the 16 deaths was in Sweden. A woman died after visiting Germany, the Swedish Ministry for Health and Social Affairs said.

The Robert Koch Institute, Germany's federal unit responsible for disease control and prevention, said 373 people have been confirmed sickened. But figures coming in from local authorities and hospitals made clear many more people are believed to be infected.

"Here in Hamburg we're pretty much at the epicenter," Jorg Debatin, medical director of the Hamburg Medical Center, told CNN. His hospital has 600 to 700 infected patients, Debatin said. About 20% to 30% of them develop hemolytic-uremic syndrome, or HUS, "a very severe complication," he said.

The hospital is especially concerned about 85 patients -- 20 children and 65 adults -- who may go into renal failure and develop neurologic symptoms, he said.

Sweden's health ministry said there have been 39 confirmed cases of people sickened by E. coli in Sweden, 16 of which are being investigated for complications caused by HUS. All 39 patients recently visited 39 Germany.

No contaminated vegetables have been reported in Sweden, the ministry said.

While authorities in Germany worked to contain and respond to the outbreak, the specific cause remained unclear.

The European Food Safety Alert Network said EHEC, or enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli, a strain of E. coli that causes hemorrhage in the intestines, was found in organic cucumbers originating from Spain, packaged in Germany, and distributed to countries including Austria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg and Spain.

But the source has not yet been pinpointed, authorities said.

Hans-Joachim Breetz, executive director of Hamburg's Institute for Sanitation and Environment, said it can take days or weeks to find a source of infection.

In the meantime, "the warning remains not to eat raw cucumbers, leaf lettuce or tomatoes," said Cornelia Pruefer-Storcks,

Hamburg's top official for health and consumer protection.

European Union spokeswoman Pia Ahrenkilde-Hansen told CNN that German authorities were examining cucumber batches from the Spanish cities of Almeria and Malaga as potential sources of infection. She also said a shipment originating in Denmark or the Netherlands is being checked.

The questions surrounding produce from Spain have "paralyzed" vegetable exports, a spokeswoman for Fepex, the Spanish export producers group for vegetables and fruits, said Tuesday.

The industry in Spain expects weekly losses of about 200 million euros ($288 million), Fepex officials said.

Fepex President Jorge Brotons and Director General Jose Maria Pozancos called on Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero to step in, the spokeswoman said. The Fepex officials argue that German authorities have accused the Spanish cucumber of being the source of the outbreak, without proof.

Spanish Health Minister Leire Pajin discussed the outbreak on Twitter. "In the absence of proof. we're not ruling out using all necessary measures to make sure there's compensation for the (economic) damage," she wrote. "From the first day, the government launched a diplomatic offensive to prevent the linking of this health crisis with our products."

Germany is the top purchaser of Spain's produce, according to Fepex. In 2010, Spain exported 9.4 million tons of produce; a quarter of that went to Germany, Fepex said.

A Spanish health ministry spokesman told CNN that Spanish authorities are investigating the outbreak. Initial results that could cite a potential casue are expected by Thursday, or possibly as early as Wednesday, the spokesman said.

Spanish authorities are sharing their investigative results with German and European Union authorities, the spokesman added.

The Spanish Agency for Food Safety and Nutrition said two Spanish companies producing cucumbers may be involved in the outbreak. The agency was awaiting further results from Germany's investigation.

The Robert Koch Institute said Germany's Federal Institute for Risk Assessment "advised against eating raw tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuces to prevent further cases."

CNN's Frederik Pleitgen and Eileen Hsieh contributed to this report.

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Yemen security official: Islamists kill 5 soldiers (AP)

SANAA, Yemen – Radical Islamists who overran a south Yemen town killed five soldiers in an ambush on Tuesday, security officials said, while fresh clashes broke out in the capital between security forces and fighters from the country's most powerful tribal confederation, edging the country toward civil war.

Almost four months of mass street protests across Yemen calling for democratic reforms and the ouster of longtime president Ali Abdullah Saleh have rocked the stability of this impoverished corner of the Arabian Peninsula. Saleh's security forces shot dead four protesters in the southern city of Taiz Monday, medics said, bringing the two-day death toll there to at least 25.

The upheaval in Yemen has sparked fears that militant groups will take over. Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula operates in its weakly governed provinces along with a number of other radicals, like the ones who overran the town of Zinjibar near Yemen's south coast over the weekend.

A Yemeni security official said militants ambushed an army unit driving toward the town Tuesday, killing five soldiers and injuring 12. The militants fired on the army convoy from behind, forcing them to speed into an ambush where other gunmen fired on their cars.

The soldiers killed two militants before fleeing the area, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to reporters.

Hundreds of armed Islamists stormed the town last week, seizing banks and government offices before setting up barricades to solidify their control. Shelling by army units outside the city failed to dislodge them over the weekend while sending residents fleeing.

Resident Hilmi Ali, 21, said army shelling over the weekend appeared to fall randomly over the town, striking a mosque and four houses in his neighborhood and killing seven of his neighbors.

The Islamists overran a police administration building and intelligence office and could be seen over the weekend driving police cars around town, Ali said. Dozens of families fled.

"We walked on our feet to leave the city," he said by phone from the city of Aden.

It remains unclear whether the Islamists who seized Zinjibar are connected to al-Qaida. Other armed Islamist groups have sought refuge in the area, including some who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan, and others who fought with Saleh's government in a 1994 civil war with the south.

Before Tuesday's ambush, the Interior Ministry said 22 soldiers had been killed since Friday. It remains unclear how many civilians and militants have been killed.

In the capital, Sanaa, fresh gunfights and rounds of artillery fire broke out Tuesday between government troops and fighters loyal to the country's most powerful tribal leader, marking the collapse of a fragile cease-fire.

The fighting brings head-to-head two of Yemen's most powerful men: Sheik Sadeq al-Ahmar, head of the country's Hasid tribal confederation and Saleh, who has heavily stocked the security forces with relatives and allies during his 33-year rule.

Clashes resumed overnight after the failure of a days-old cease-fire that ended last week's clashes, which killed 124 people. Tribal fighters withdrew Sunday from the Local Administration Ministry, one of more than a dozen ministries and government buildings they'd seized in the Hassaba neighborhood, also home to the family compound of Sheik Sadeq al-Ahmar, the Hasid leader.

Abdel-Qawi al-Qasi, a spokesman for al-Ahmar, said that Saleh's force broke the agreement by not withdrawing from buildings they had occupied, especially those around al-Amhar's house.

Clashes erupted early Tuesday and continued through the morning, with tribal fighters seizing a number of new buildings, including the upper house of parliament, the headquarters of Saleh's ruling party and a key street leading to the airport.

"Any place that poses any danger to us and they are firing at us from, we will take it," al-Qasi said.

Al-Qasi said the tribesmen had also seized the Interior Ministry. Yemeni state TV called the fighters "gangs" and denied they'd seized the building.

At least one person was killed — a man who was driving through the neighborhood, said witness Abdel-Waid Ali. Official information on casualties was not immediately available.

President Ali Abdullah Saleh has clung to power despite daily protests, defections by key allies and intense pressure from the United States and powerful neighbors like Saudi Arabia to transfer his powers.

His security forces have waged a brutal crackdown that has included sniper attacks on unarmed protesters, and he has several times pledged to step down under a deal with the opposition only to back out at the last minute.

Beyond the capital, violence also roiled the southern city of Taiz, which has been a hotbed of anti-government protests since the early days of the uprising.

Medics said government troops fired on protesters Tuesday, killing four and bringing the two-day death toll to at least 25.

Soldiers backed by tanks and bulldozers moved in over the weekend, smashing a tent camp the protesters had held in a central square and destroying a field hospital that had been set up in anticipation of such an attack.

On Tuesday, the U.N.'s human rights office in Geneva said it received reports from Yemen that more than 50 people have been killed by pro-government forces in Taiz since Sunday. U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay cautioned that the reports "remain to be fully verified."

Pillay said in a statement that "such reprehensible acts of violence and indiscriminate attacks on unarmed civilians by armed security officers must stop immediately."

Government forces opened fire again Tuesday on demonstrators who had regrouped for marches on several main streets, said activist Boushra al-Maqtali.

Protesters set fire to tires and threw stones at the police, who fired rubber bullets, live ammunition and tear gas to disperse them, said another activist, Ghazi al-Samie.

"The city is boiling," al-Samie said. "All shops have been closed and government employees did not go to work and armored military vehicles blocked all the roads leading to the city to prevent people from nearing districts to join the protesters."

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