Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Happy Valentines Day America! What's in your heart this Valentine's Day?

This has been updated from a previous posting.
“To-morrow is Saint Valentine's day,
All in the morning betime,
And I a maid at your window,
To be your Valentine.
Then up he rose, and donn'd his clothes,
And dupp'd the chamber-door;
Let in the maid, that out a maid
Never departed more.” 

~~ William Shakespeare, Hamlet,
Act IV, Scene 5 
Valentine's Day
as ruefully mentioned by Ophelia in Hamlet (1600–1601


Are you still looking for that special gift idea and want to give back to someone? 

Gifts can be so very hard to find but you still have 3 days to give that special thoughtful gift.

There are so many ideas for V gift giving. 


Here are some ideas:
Personalized Heart in Sand Framed
314 VAlentine's Day Gifts
Valentine's Day Gifts from Gifts.com
Love Wins In 2017: Here are 25+ Valentine's Day Gifts That Give Back, Forbes

Saint Valentine's Day, commonly known as Valentine's Day, or the Feast of Saint Valentine, is observed on February 14 each year. It is celebrated in many countries around the world, although it remains a working day in most countries.

The first recorded association of Valentine's Day with romantic love was 632 years ago in Parliament of Foules (1382) by Geoffrey Chaucer.

Chaucer wrote: 

For this was on seynt Volantynys day
Whan euery bryd comyth there to chese his make.
 ["For this was on Saint Valentine's Day, when every bird cometh there to choose his mate."]


This poem by Chaucer was written to honor the first anniversary of the engagement of King Richard II of England to Anne of Bohemia. A treaty providing for a marriage was signed on May 2, 1381. (When they were married eight months later, they were each only 15 years old).  

Have you marked your calendars for giving back this month? February is the month of love and of "giving back," be it supporting a cause or simply going the extra mile for someone. The energi PR firm in Canada is dedicating Valentine's Day to "Acts of Love & Kindness" and closing the office on Friday, February 14th to continue it's strong message of corporate social responsibility.

ACTS of LOVE & KINDNESS performed by energi PR on Friday, February 14, 2014 can be followed online on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #energiPRALK.

ALK (Acts of Love & Kindness) was conceived in 1994 by Patrice Tanaka, chief counselor and creative strategist at PadillaCRT and was later adopted by more than 50 public relations firms in the US through the Public Relations Society of America. energi PR approached Tanaka and sought her blessing to bring ALK up to Canada as part of its corporate social responsibility program.






The most popular martyrology associated with Saint Valentine was that he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire; during his imprisonment, he is said to have healed the daughter of his jailer Asterius.

Legend states that before his execution he wrote "from your Valentine" as a farewell to her.

Today, Saint Valentine's Day is an official feast day in the Anglican Communion, as well as in the Lutheran Church.

The Eastern Orthodox Church also celebrates Saint Valentine's Day, however on July 6th in honor of Roman presbyter Saint Valentine, and July 30th, in honor of Hieromartyr Valentine, the Bishop of Interamna.

Numerous early Christian martyrs were named Valentine. The Valentines honored on February 14 are Valentine of Rome (Valentinus presb. m. Romae) and Valentine of Terni (Valentinus ep. Interamnensis m. Romae). Valentine of Rome was a priest in Rome who was martyred about AD 269 and was buried on the Via Flaminia. The flower crowned skull.

The modern cliché Valentine's Day poem can be found in the collection of English nursery rhymes Gammer Gurton's Garland (1784):
The rose is red, the violet's blue,
The honey's sweet, and so are you.
Thou art my love and I am thine;
I drew thee to my Valentine:
The lot was cast and then I drew,
And Fortune said it shou'd be you. 
~ Gammer Gurton's Garland, 1784

According to the U.S. Greeting Card Association approximately 190 million valentines are sent each year in the US. Half of those valentines are given to family members other than husband or wife, usually to children. When you include the valentine-exchange cards made in school activities the figure goes up to 1 billion, and teachers become the people receiving the most valentines. Also, many send Valentines Day chocolates and other candies.

New traditions have evolved with the internet. Millions of people today use digital (e.g., eCards, eCoupons, etc.) to send Valentine's Day greeting messages. An estimated 15 million e-valentines were sent in 2010. Below are two sets of Valentines Day card collages, to view detail, zoom in 150% to 200%.



Do you plan on volunteering this month and on Valentines Day? Are you participating in any social responsibility initiatives for the month of February? Please share in the comments section and do include links to any of your Valentines Day giving back themed campaigns.

Other Resources 
♦ Closed for the day: Gone volunteering, NewsWire.ca http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/1296689/closed-for-the-day-gone-volunteering
♦ 10 things for happier living: do things for others, actionforhappiness.org, http://www.actionforhappiness.org/10-keys-to-happier-living/do-things-for-others?gclid=CO-V0fuup7wCFZDm7AodiXoAQQ
♦ Becoming Ginger Rogers, How Ballroom Dancing Made Me a Happier Woman, Better Partner, and Smarter CEO, Patrice Tanaka http://www.prsa.org/Conferences/HealthAcademy/Archives/2012/Sessions/2012BecomingGingerRogers#.UusLS_ldV7M
♦ Valentines Day Ecards http://www.americangreetings.com/ecards/valentines-day?source=aggoogle548
♦ Greeting Card Association http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greeting_Card_Association
♦ No better place to say "I Love You" than Times Square, TimesSquare.org http://www.timessquarenyc.org/events/valentines-day/index.aspx
♦ Guy Kawasaki Google Plus, https://plus.google.com/+GuyKawasaki/posts/8SaRPXr8cEA#+GuyKawasaki/posts/8SaRPXr8cEA
♦ Valentines Day Recipes & Cooking, FoodNetwork http://www.foodnetwork.com/valentines-day/package/index.html



All photos courtesy of Wikimedia and screen shots taken from video and websites. All other photos will be credited as required.



Please visit this blog frequently and share this with your social media and professional network. Thanks.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Facebook a teen, reaches the big 013: Happy Birthday to you

This article has been updated from previous postings.
"I mean there doesn't necessarily have to be more ... I mean like a lot of people are focused on taking over the world. Or doing the most biggest thing. Like getting the most users. I think like part of making a difference and doing something cool is focusing intensely." ~~ Mark Zuckerberg , co-founder, Facebook; As quoted, June 2005 while talking about Facebook before it was famous. See YouTube video below for full discussion.



Facebook Interview Part 2 (2005) , below YouTube Video of interview with Zuckerberg by Derek Franzese

Facebook that controversial social networking service with media, social, political and cultural implications launched in February 4, 2004,(speculative as some say February 3) and is almost a teen, turning 13 years young today.

Here are the latest statistics as reported by Facebook:
As of December 2015 there are 1.04 billion daily active users on average with
Facebook reports 934 million mobile daily active users on average for December 2015
There are 1.59 billion monthly active FB users as of December 31, 2015
1.44 billion mobile monthly active users as of December 31, 2015
Approximately 83.6% of FB's daily active users are outside the US and Canada

As of 2015, the company is $300 billion dollars richer since its launch, and there are over 1.55 billion monthly active Facebook users (MAUs) which is a 14 percent increase year over year (Source: Facebook as of 9/30/15). Additionally, according to Zephoria Digital Marketing, of those 1.55 billion MAUs, 1.01 billion people log onto Facebook daily (DAU) for September 2015, which represents a 17% increase year over year (Source: Facebook as 9/30/15) with 4.5 billion likes generated daily as of May 2013 which is a 67 percent increase from August 2012 (Source: Facebook). As of December 2013, Facebook had over 1.23 billion active users, more than 945 million (versus 600 million a year ago) using Facebook on a mobile device. Happy Birthday Facebook! Any Google doodle this year?

From users hover time to determine interest, providing ability for users to choose what they want to see first in their news feeds to live-streaming and messaging application for booking Uber rides, Facebook continues innovating.

In January 2014, chief operating officer of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, clarified: "He [Mark] always said Facebook was started not just to be a company, but to fulfill a vision of connecting the world."

Facebook Inc. began selling stock to the public and trading on the NASDAQ on May 18, 2012.

Latest Facebook, Inc., Form 8-K (current report filing) from EDGAR® Online here.

Not surprising, Facebook is not number 1 in the following 11 countries: Belarus - vk.com; China - qq.com/qzone.qq.com; Kazakhstan - vk.com / odnoklassniki.ru; Moldova - odnoklassniki.ru; Russia - vk.com / odnoklassniki.ru; Ukraine - vk.com; South Korea - qq.com/qzone.qq.com; Uzbekistan - odnoklassniki.ru; Iran - Cloob.com; Vietnam - Zing.vn; North Korea - not available.

Facebook’s major competing social media are as follows: QQ.com; vk.com, odnoklassniki.ru and Zing.vn. Other competitors are mixi in Japan and renren in China.

Based on its 2012 income of US$5 billion, Facebook joined the Fortune 500 list for the first time on the list published in May 2013, being placed at position 462, BusinessInsider.com, Carlson, Nicholas (March 5, 2010) “At Last – A Full Story of How Facebook was Founded http://www.businessinsider.com/how-facebook-was-founded-2010-3#we-can-talk-about-that-after-i-get-all-the-basic-functionality-up-tomorrow-night-1

Below the resources section is a chronological timeline that reflects milestones, launches and product information beginning with October 2003 through January 2014.

Founded by Mark Zuckerberg with his college roommates and fellow Harvard University students Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes, the website's membership was initially limited by the founders to Harvard students, but was expanded to other colleges in the Boston area, the Ivy League, and Stanford University.

Mark Zuckerberg wrote Facemash, the predecessor to Facebook, on October 28, 2003, while attending Harvard as a sophomore. According to The Harvard Crimson, the site was comparable to Hot or Not, and "used photos compiled from the online facebooks of nine houses, placing two next to each other at a time and asking users to choose the 'hotter' person.


With success comes controversy particularly with Facebook. Zuckerberg hacked protected areas of Harvard's computer network and copied the houses' private dormitory ID images. Harvard at that time did not have a student "facebook" (a directory with photos and basic information), though individual houses had been issuing their own paper facebooks since the mid-1980s.

From it’s first 4 hours online, Facemash attracted
450 visitors and 22,000 photo-views.



According to an article from Rolling Stone in July 2008, the site was quickly forwarded to several campus group list-servers, but was shut down a few days later by the Harvard administration.

Zuckerberg was charged by the administration with breach of security, violating copyrights, and violating individual privacy, and faced expulsion.

Ultimately, the charges were dropped. For more information visit The Battle of Facebook, Rolling Stone, NY July 2008.

Zuckerberg expanded on this initial project that semester by creating a social study tool ahead of an art history final, by uploading 500 Augustan images to a website, with one image per page along with a comment section. He opened the site up to his classmates, and people started sharing their notes.

The following semester, Zuckerberg began writing code for a new website in January 2004. He was inspired, he said, by an editorial in The Harvard Crimson about the Facemash incident. On February 4, 2004, Zuckerberg launched "Thefacebook", originally located at thefacebook.com.

Six days after the site launched, three Harvard seniors, Cameron Winklevoss, Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra, accused Zuckerberg of intentionally misleading them into believing he would help them build a social network called HarvardConnection.com, while he was instead using their ideas to build a competing product.

The three complained to the Harvard Crimson, and the newspaper began an investigation. The three later filed a lawsuit against Zuckerberg, subsequently settling. In June 2004, Facebook moved its base of operations to Palo Alto, California and received its first investment later that month from PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel. The company dropped “The” from its name after purchasing the domain name facebook.com in 2005 for $200,000.


Writers for The Wall Street Journal found in 2010 that Facebook apps were transmitting identifying information to "dozens of advertising and Internet tracking companies". The apps used an HTTP referrer which exposed the user's identity and sometimes their friends'.

Facebook said, "We have taken immediate action to disable all applications that violate our terms.” Facebook in Privacy Breach, The Wall Street Journal (New York).

In January 2013, the countries with the most Facebook users were:
FB stats by country, March 3, 2012)
United States with 168.8 million members
Brazil with 64.6 million members
India with 62.6 million members
Indonesia with 51.4 million members
Mexico with 40.2 million members This totals to 309 million members or about 38.6 percent of Facebook's 1 billion worldwide members.
43.1 Million Members of Facebook in Indonesia, Kompas, February 2, 2012.

In regards to Facebook's mobile usage, per an analyst report in early 2013, there are 192 million Android users, 147 million iPhone users, 48 million iPad users and 56 million messenger users


All photos courtesy of Wikimedia and screen shots taken from video and websites. All other photos will be credited as required.


Additional resources:
Facebook profile may expose mental illness Fox News
Facebook Banned: 9 Ways To Get Kicked Off The Social Network Huffington Post
Facebook Wikipedia
This is The Future of The Facebook ‘News Feed’ Business Insider

Facebook Timeline
2003
♦ October 28, 2003: Mark Zuckerberg releases Facemash, the predecessor to Facebook. It was described as a Harvard University version of Hot or Not
2004
♦ January 2004: Zuckerberg begins writing Facebook
♦ January 11, 2004: Zuckerberg registers thefacebook.com domain
♦ February 4, 2004: Zuckerberg launches Facebook
♦ March 2004: Facebook expands to MIT, Boston University, Boston College, Northeastern University, Stanford University, Dartmouth College, Columbia University, and Yale University
♦ April 13, 2004: Zuckerberg, Dustin Moskovitz, and Eduardo Saverin form Thefacebook.com LLC, a partnership
♦ June 2004: Facebook receives its first investment from Peter Thiel for US$500,000
♦ June 2004: Facebook incorporates into a new company, and Sean Parker (early employee of Napster) becomes its president
♦ June 2004: Facebook moves its base of operations to Palo Alto, California
♦ August 2004: To compete with growing campus-only service i2hub, Zuckerberg launches Wirehog. It is a precursor to Facebook Platform applications
♦ September 2004: ConnectU files a lawsuit against Zuckerberg and other Facebook founders
♦ December 30, 2004: Facebook achieves its one millionth registered user
2005
♦ May 26, 2005: Accel Partners invests $13 million into Facebook
♦ July 19, 2005: News Corp acquires MySpace, spurring rumors about the possible sale of Facebook to a larger media company
♦ August 23, 2005: Facebook acquires Facebook.com domain for $200,000
♦ September 2005: Added high school networks[14]
♦ October 2005: Added international school networks and added photos
2006
♦ 2006: A leaked cash flow statement shows that Facebook had a net loss of $3.63 million for the 2005 fiscal year
♦ March 28, 2006: A potential acquisition of Facebook is reportedly under negotiations, for $750 million first, then later $2 billion
♦ September 2006: Facebook discusses with Yahoo! about the latter possibly acquiring the former, for $1 billion
♦ September 2006: Facebook launches a high school version of the website
♦ September 26, 2006: Facebook is open to everyone aged 13 and over, and with a valid email address
2008
♦ June 2008: Facebook settles both lawsuits, ConnectU vs Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg et al. and intellectual property theft, Wayne Chang et al. over The Winklevoss Chang Group's Social Butterfly project. The settlement effectively had Facebook acquiring ConnectU for $20 million in cash and over $1.2 million in shares, valued at $45 million based on $15 billion company valuation
♦ August 2008: Employees reportedly privately sell their shares to venture capital firms, at a company valuation of between $3.75 billion to $5 billion
♦ October 2008: Facebook sets up its international headquarters in Dublin, Ireland
2009
♦ August 2009: Facebook acquires FriendFeed
♦ September 2009: Facebook claims that it has turned cash flow positive for the first time
2010
♦ February 2010: Facebook acquires Malaysian contact-importing startup Octazen Solutions
♦ April 2, 2010: Facebook announces the acquisition of photo-sharing service called Divvy-shot for an undisclosed amount
♦ April 19, 2010: Facebook introduces Community Pages, which are Pages that are populated with articles from Wikipedia
♦ April 21, 2010: Facebook introduces Instant Personalization, starting with Microsoft Docs, Yelp, and Pandora
♦ June 2010: Facebook employees sell shares of the company on SecondMarket at a company valuation of $11.5 billion
♦ October 1, 2010: The Social Network, a film about the beginnings of Facebook directed by David Fincher is released. The film is met with widespread critical acclaim as well as commercial success; however, Mark Zuckerberg says that the film is a largely inaccurate account of what happened.
2011
♦ January 2011: $500 million is invested into Facebook for 1% of the company, placing its worth at $50 billion
♦ February 2011: Facebook adds new "civil union" option for gay partnerships
♦ February 2011: Facebook application and content aggregator Pixable estimates that Facebook will host 100 billion photos by summer 2011
♦ June 2011: Facebook partners with Skype to add video chat
♦ September 2011: Facebook partners with Heroku for Facebook application development using the Facebook Platform
♦ September 22, 2011: Facebook launches new UI Timeline in F8 Convention
♦ October 10, 2011: Facebook launches iPad app
♦ December 21, 2011: Facebook log in page changes due to Facebook Timeline addition
♦ December 22, 2011: Facebook launches its new profile user interface, Facebook Timeline.
2012
♦ April 2012: Facebook acquires picture sharing and social network, Instagram, for $1 billion, the largest acquisition to date
♦ May 2012: Facebook IPO, initial price set at $38 a share, and the stock closed at $38.23 on its first trading day
♦ July 2012: Facebook adds same-sex couples as icons for marriage
♦ August 2012: Facebook forces all remaining users of the old profile style to the new "Timeline" style
♦ October 2012: Total number of Facebook users reaches 1 billion
2013
♦ January 15 :Product - Facebook announces and begins rolling out Facebook Graph Search.
♦ January 30, and April 9: Product - Facebook rolls out detailed and fine-grained emoticons to express different actions and emotional states in one's status updates (experimental launch January 30, official launch with universal availability April 9).
♦ March 7: Product - Facebook announces major planned changes to the News Feed. However, Facebook cancelled these changes after receiving negative feedback from users.
♦ March 8: Acquisitions - Facebook announces that they acquired the team from Storylane, but not the product itself.
♦ April 4 and then April 12 Product (mobile-only) - Facebook launches Facebook Home, a user interface layer for Android-compatible phones that provides a replacement home screen that makes it easier for users to browse and post.[62][63]
♦ April 15: Product - Facebook launches a new timeline.
♦ April-July: Product - Facebook launches Stickers, initially only for its iOS apps in April but later expanding to its web version in July.
♦ June 12, then June 27: Product - Facebook announces support for hashtags, initially only for the web (June 12). Later, more functionality is added and hashtags are extended to the mobile site and apps.
♦ June 30: Political activism - Zuckerberg joins 700 Facebook employees for the June 2013 Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Pride Celebration march in San Francisco, U.S. The 2013 Pride celebration was especially significant, as it followed a Supreme Court of the United States ruling that deemed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional.
♦ September 26: Product - Facebook begins letting people edit their posts and comments after publishing.
♦ September 29: Product - Facebook announces that it will begin rolling out Graph Search for posts and comments.
♦ November 13: Acquisition talks - News outlets report that Facebook offered to buy Snapchat for $3 billion USD but was spurned.
♦ December 18:Financial/legal - Facebook, Zuckerberg, & banks face IPO lawsuit.
2014
♦ January 16: Product - Facebook launches Trending Topics for its web version in the US, UK, Canada, India, and Australia. This is based on feedback to a pilot version tested both on the web and mobile starting August 2013.
♦ January 30: Product (mobile-only) Facebook announces Facebook Paper, a separate iOS app that provides a newspaper-like or magazine-like experience for reading on the phone, scheduled for launch on February 3. Facebook also announces Facebook Creative Labs, an intra-company effort to have separate teams working on separate mobile apps that specialize in different facets related to the Facebook experience, rather than trying to make changes to Facebook's main web version, mobile version, or its iOS and Android apps, and says that Facebook Paper is the first product of Facebook Creative Labs. Facebook Paper receives mixed reviews, and some commentators note its similarity with Flipboard.
♦ February 3: Facebook launches Paper. http://www.facebook.com/paper
♦ February 5: Facebook launches Lookback. http://www.facebook.com/lookback
♦ February 19:Facebook makes its biggest acquisition, 16 times more than what it paid for Instagram by acquiring WhatsApp, a free text messaging system for $16 billion (spent $4 billion in cash and $12 billion in Facebook stock plus another $3 billion of stock over the next four years).
♦ March 3: Rumors are circulated that Facebook is buying drone maker Titan Aerospace for $60 million. It is believed that the acquisition will help bolster Facebook's vision with Internet.org. Later, on April 14, 2014, the Wall Street Journal reports that Google is acquiring Titan Aerospace.
♦ March 6: Product Facebook announces that it will begin rollout of a somewhat modified news feed. The changes are along the same lines as those announced in the planned revamp announced March 7, 2013 (that was halted), but are more minor and focused.
♦ March 17: Product Facebook's face recognition algorithm (DeepFace) reaches near-human accuracy in identifying faces.
♦ March 25: Facebook announces that it is acquiring Oculus VR, Inc., a leading virtual reality company. The amount is reported to be $2 billion in cash and stock.
♦ March 27 Facebook announces a Connectivity Lab as part of the Internet.org initiative, with the goal of bringing the Internet to everybody via drones, using acqhires from Ascenta.
♦ April 24: Product Facebook announces FB Newswire to help journalists find news news on its website.[145]
♦ April 30: Product, accessibility Facebook launches anonymous login so that people can use apps without giving them their data.
♦ June 18: Product (mobile-only) Facebook releases Facebook Slingshot, an instant messaging software application for sharing photos and videos with friends, for Android and iOS devices.
♦ July 21: Product Facebook launches Save, a read-it-later feature that allows users to save links, places, and media pages for later perusal.
♦ September 15: Userbase/controversy Facebook cracks down on the Facebook profiles of drag queens in San Francisco, asking them to switch to using their real names, and shutting down the accounts of those who refuse to comply.[153] There is considerable pushback, including a planned protest at Facebook headquarters, that is delayed for a meeting with Facebook, but Facebook refuses to budge on its policy. Many people, particularly those in or sympathetic to the LGBTQ community, sign up for competing social network Ello, that does not enforce a real names policy, promises to remain "ad-free and porn-friendly", and aims to have a zero-tolerance policy for hate speech. On October 1, Facebook announced a clarification to its real name policy and said that drag queens could continue operating their accounts. The company clarified that people should use their authentic real-world names but need not use their legal names.
♦ October 6: Acquisitions by Facebook Facebook officially completes the acquisition of WhatsApp, and WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum agrees to match Mark Zuckerberg's $1 salary.[158]
♦ October 23: Product Facebook launches pseudonymous app Rooms, where Facebook users can create and participate in forums on any topic and do not need to use their real names. The forthcoming launch of the pap had been reported on October 7.
♦ October 31: Facebook creates a custom Tor link, making it easier for people to access Facebook anonymously in locations where it is censored.[162][163][164]
♦ November 7: Product Facebook makes it easy for people to unfollow friends and pages they've liked, both while viewing pages in the feed and while reviewing summaries of the most prolific contributors to their feed.[165][166]
♦ December 8: Product Facebook rolls out keyword search for all posts, part of Facebook Graph Search, to all US English users on desktop and using iPhones. It is cited as a potential competitor to Yelp and other product recommendation engines and also as a potential way to surface old, embarrassing posts by people.
♦ December 11: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg holds his second Q&A, open to the public, about Facebook, where he discusses the dislike button and Facebook's role in promoting viewpoint diversity, helping people share more, and facilitating social and political transparency.
2015
♦ January 5: Acquisitions by Facebook Facebook acquires Wit.ai, a Y Combinator startup founded 18 months ago to create an API for building voice-activated interfaces.
♦ January 8: Acquisitions by Facebook Facebook acquires QuickFire Networks, a company that built a custom hardware and software platform for reducing video file sizes and upload times. The Wall Street Journal got the news on January 8, with confirmation later arriving on QuickFire’s site.
♦ January 16: Open sourcing Facebook open sources the Torch library, containing some of its deep learning tools in machine learning, including new code that runs 23 times as fast for training convolutional neural networks as the fastest publicly available code until that time.
♦ January 20: Product Facebook announces that it will show fewer hoaxes in the news feed, and mark items it identifies as potential hoaxes so that readers can view them more critically.
♦ March 17: Product Facebook introduces a free friend-to-friend payment service within its Messenger app. This is touted by some tech journalists as potential competition for PayPal's Venmo service.
♦ March 25: Product At the first day of the 2015 F8 conference (a conference for Facebook to make announcements about major product and service changes), the company makes a bunch of announcements, with the unifying theme being that the company wants to be an integrated bunch of apps, each fulfilling a somewhat different role. Currently, the company's leading apps include its main app, Messenger, and externally built and acquired apps such as Instagram and WhatsApp. Specific announcements include making Facebook Messenger more of a platform, a new real-time comments system, embeddable videos, spherical video, Parse for the Internet of Things, updates to ad exchange LiveRail, and analytics for apps.
♦ March 26: Open sourcing Facebook releases its React native framework for building native apps as open source. This is announced on the second day of the F8 conference.
♦ March 31: Userbase, product Facebook launches a feature called Scrapbook that allows parents to give their kids an official presence on Facebook even when they are too young to have their own accounts on the network by tagging them in photos. A Scrapbook can be owned by two people who have indicated to Facebook that they are in a relationship. When the kids grow old enough and get their own accounts, they can take over ownership of the Scrapbook and change the privacy settings thereof.
♦ April 22: Product Facebook launches an Android app called Hello to instantly matches phone numbers of incoming and outgoing calls to Facebook profiles to show information about the caller/callee, block calls from commonly blocked numbers, and search for businesses to call, with initial rollout in the United States, Brazil, and Nigeria. There is no corresponding iOS app, because iOS does not allow apps to interact with phone calls. Commentators compare Facebook Hello to the native Android dialer app[202] and to TrueCaller, an app with crowdsourced data.
♦ April 28 (announcement), April 30 (closure): Product, platform Facebook announces that it is shutting down its friends data API, forcing developers to migrate to the Graph API. The company is also allowing for more granular control of data that users may share with apps.[204][205][206]
♦ May 12: Product Facebook launches "Instant Articles" for Publishers.[207] Publishers who use Instant Articles can opt in to have some of their articles shown to mobile users inside Facebook's app itself, without users having to leave the app and visit the customer's website. Initial launch partners include BuzzFeed, the New York Times, National Geographic and six others. The article as displayed on Facebook mimics the article on the website in terms of layout, and Instant Articles allows for correct attribution and analytics with tools such as Google Analytics, Omniture, and Comscore, in addition to publishers benefiting from Facebook's own analytics. Publishers can choose to have only a subset of their content available as Instant Articles, and Facebook handles the porting of the article to the Instant Article format itself. BuzzFeed praised Facebook for complying with its requests for compatibility with analytics tracking, and said the process was very collaborative throughout. Load times are claimed to be ten times faster than the mobile web. Publishers can keep all the ad revenue if using their own ads, but Facebook gets a 30% cut if the ads are shown by Facebook.
♦ May 29: Product Facebook confirms official support for GIFs. Autoplay settings for GIFs would be the same as those for videos: users who have video autoplay set to on (the default setting) will have GIFs autoplay when they scroll to the GIF in their news feed. Others can play the GIF manually by clicking the GIF button on the feed item with the GIF.
♦ June–August: Product Facebook adds more features for pages to make it easier for businesses to use them. These include: allowing pages to display how quickly they respond to messages, allowing pages to send saved replies to messages, allowing pages to use private messages for customer support, and adding buy button integration to pages.
♦ June–July: Product Facebook makes changes to its news feed algorithm in a few different directions. It relinquishes some control to users allowing them to dictate what they see first in the news feed. Also, it announces that it will start using information on how long people hover on a particular item in their news feed to gauge their level of interest in the item, in addition to the more explicit signals it currently uses (likes, comments, shares).
♦ August 5: Product On Facebook launches live-streaming, initially restricted only to celebrities.Subsequently, on August 12, it announces that the feature will be made available to journalists and those with verified profiles.
♦ August 27: Userbase Facebook announces that it has hit the milestone of 1 billion users accessing it on a single day.
♦ December: Product Facebook announces that it will add a feature for booking a ride through its messaging application. Users of Facebook Messenger in the U.S. will be able to summon an Uber car with a few taps.
2016
♦ January 29: Facebook bans gun sales on Facebook and Instagram (more info at this New York Times article)



All photos courtesy of Wikimedia and screen shots taken from video and websites. All other photos will be credited as required.


Resources:
Facebook, Inc. reports earnings, 2/1/2017 

What to expect when Facebook reports earnings, 2/1/2017
Mark Zuckerberg appears to finally admit Facebook is a media company, The Guardian, December 2016
Who owns Facebook? The Definitive Guide


Please visit this blog frequently and share this with your social media. Thanks.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Happy Groundhog Day America: Punxsutawney Phil makes his 131st: Sees his shadow and New York's Chuck sees opposite.


"This is pitiful. A thousand people, freezing their butts off, waiting to worship a rat! What a hype. Well they used to mean something in this town, they used to pull the hog out and they used to eat it. You're hypocrites! All of ya! You got a problem with what I'm saying, Larry? Untie your tongue and you come out here and talk, huh? Am I upsetting you, Princess? You know you want a prediction about the weather, you're asking the wrong Phil. I'll give you a prediction. It's gonna be cold, it's gonna be gray, and it's gonna last you the rest of your life." ~~ Bill Murray , American actor and comedian, as quoted in the 1993 critically acclaimed film "Groundhog Day"

At 7:20 am today at Gobbler's Knob, Punxsutawney Phil did see his shadow which means we can expect 6 more weeks of winter. Although New York's friend had no shadow which means an early spring.

Occurring every year on February 1st, 2nd or 3rd , dates for the entire celebration begin February 1st - February 3rd, and Punxsy Phil will predict what the next 6 weeks of weather will be.



Amazingly, for over two centuries, (1886 or earlier) crowds as large as 40,000 have gathered at Gobbler's Knob hill at Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania to celebrate. Other celebrations taking place in Pennsylvania include Quarryville in Lancaster County, the Anthracite Region of Schuylkill County, and Bucks County.


The largest Groundhog Day celebration is held in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Groundhog Day received more mass attention after the release of the 1993 comedy film “Groundhog Day,” starring Bill Murray who plays Phil Connors, an egotistical Pittsburgh TV weatherman who, during a hated assignment covering the annual Groundhog Day event in Punxsutawney, dreams living February 2nd over and over while repeatedly indulging in hedonism and numerous suicide attempts.

Finally he wakes up and realizes his life matters and prioritizes and makes drastic changes and improvements. In 2006, the film was added to the United States National Film Registry as being deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."



YouTube Video: Groundhog Day - Phil (Bill Murray) Steals Phil (The Groundhog)

Many wonder just how scientific is Punxsy Phil's shadow. According to groundhogday.org, the furry fortune teller is accurate 75% to 90% of the time, while a Canadian study of 13 states has the success rate at 37% and the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) has the overall prediction rate at 39% accurate (since 1987).

The Stormfax Weather Almanac reports Punxsutawney Phil has seen his shadow 100 times (as of last year 2014) which equates to 101 times this year (2015), no shadow 16 times with no record 9 times. 
Groundhog day in Staten Island is sponsored by Time Warner Cable and garnered with trumpets to wake up the little Staten Island's very own woodchuck, "Chuck," as the Staten Island Zoo opens its gates at 6:30 a.m. on Feb. 2.

Also South Carolina has Sir Walter Wally.

Staten Island Chuck, or Charles G. Hogg as he is known in formal company, will make his prediction at 7:30 a.m. and the ceremony is free.

What do you think? Do you believe in the science or spirit of Groundhog Day?



All photos courtesy of Wikimedia and screen shots taken from video and websites. All other photos will be credited as required.


Additional resources: 
♦ National Film Registry, FilmSite.org http://www.filmsite.org/filmreg.html
♦ Why Groundhog Day Could Lift the Loonie, CNBC http://www.cnbc.com/id/100416469
♦ Groundhog Day: 10 things you should know before going, PENN LIVE, http://blog.pennlive.com/go/2013/01/groundhog_day_10_things_to_kno.html
♦ Groundhog Day 2014: Groundhog Day 2014: Staten Island Chuck ready to make prediction at Staten Island Zoo http://www.silive.com/news/index.ssf/2014/01/staten_island_chuck_to_make_pr_2.html
♦ Groundhog Day http://www. groundhog.org/groundhog-day
♦ Groundhog Day: Planning your trip groundhog.org/planning-your-trip



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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The 2017 Oscars ♦ ♦ ♦ Who do you think will be the winners? La La Land received most at 14 nominations. Here are my picks. What are yours?

Most diverse Oscar noms ever!  No more "#OscarsGoWhitely"or "#OscarsSoWhite"


Yes, I am hosting the Oscars. This is not a prank. And if it is, my revenge on @TheAcademy will be terrible & sweet. Thx to @alsformalwear
Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel), TV host, producer, writer, comedian, voice actor; December 5, 2016, On hosting The 89th Academy Awards (2017 Oscars).

Photo left of Jimmy Kimmel smiling from Wikipedia by photographer Andrea George created September 4,2012 during a ceremony for Ellen DeGeneres to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.



Video below of Jimmy Kimmel catches 2016 Oscar host, Chris Rock after the 2016 Oscars. 


Excerpts fromChris Rock's opening Monologue hosting the 77th (2005) Oscar Academy Awards.
"...So ...Great night tonight. We have 4 black nominees...Kinda like the deaf Oscar jam tonight ... You know why I love the Oscars. Cause the Oscars are the only awards show where the people nominated don't really perform...There's no acting at the Oscars ...The only acting you see at the Oscars are when people act like they're not mad when they lost...Like I remember one year when Halle Berry won the Oscar Nicole Kidman was smiling so wide she shoulda' won an Emmy at the Oscars for her great performance ...See at least they make white movies for people to enjoy ... real movies with plots ...with actors not rappers ... with real names like "Catch Me If You Can," "Saving Private Ryan," ... black people movies don't have real names ... you get names like "Barbershop," that's not a name that's just a location ... "Barbershop," "Cookout," "CarWash," ... they've been making the same movies for 40 years. That's right you know laundromat is coming soon. And after that check-cashing place."
  ~~ Chris Rock (Christopher Julius "Chris" Rock III) actor, comedian, voice artist, director, writer, and producer, excerpts from him while hosting the 2005 Oscar Awards (77th).




“It will be a night that ends with a lot of drunk, disappointed people.”   ~~ Chris Rock,

Actor, comedian, on hosting Oscar 2016  
(Image left is screen shot of Oscar.com homepage)

  The 89th Academy Award (Oscar) 25-category nominations were announced live on January 24th by Jennifer Hudson and Brie Larson along with Oscar nominees Jason Reitman and Ken Watanabe and Oscar-winning cinematographer Emmanuel "Chivo" Lubezki.

The 89th Oscars® LIVE OSCAR SUNDAY will be broadcast live from Hollywood's Dolby Theatre on Sunday, Feb. 26 at 7 p.m. EST on ABC Television Network, and will be televised in more than 225 countries.

Here is a listing of key Academy Announcements for the 89th Academy Awards (or copy/paste this link http://www.oscars.org/news/academy-announces-key-dates-89th-oscars).

Films with the most nominations are  “La La Land” (14 nominations, 13 categories) with no other films coming close. Arrival and Moonlight tied for 2nd with 8 nominations each.

As everyone expected, Meryl Streep received her  historic 20th nomination for her role as Florence Foster Jenkins, despite President Donald Trump dubbing her as an "over-rated" actress.

Funnyman, Jimmy Kimmel, host of Jimmy Kimmel Live will host his first Academy Award Oscars® @AcademyAwardHD @Oscars_Live @AwardsOscarsTV #Oscars2017 this year. Kimmel is no stranger to the #Oscars® as he has hosted his annual Jimmy Kimmel Live: After the Oscars specials for years.

WHO DO YOU THINK THE WINNERS WILL BE?  CAST YOUR VOTE ON OSCARCHALLENGE #OfficialOscarsChallenge

All of the movies this year are spectacular and they are all winners. Here's a summary of films with multi-nominations (by movie) and I’ll be updating this with my picks and also the winners during Oscar Night.

Not surprising, La La Land has the most Oscar nominations  at 14 ~ in the league with Titanic, which received 11 Oscars in 1997  and All About Eve with 6 Oscars in 1951.  Gone With the Wind had 13 nominations and won 8 Oscars in 1940.
La La Land  – (14 nominations, could win at least 11 possibly more, I actually have La La Land for winning 11 of 14 Oscar nominations) (Best Picture, Actor, Original Screenplay, Best Director, Actress, Original Score, Original Song, Cinematography, Production Design, Film Editing, Costume Design)
Arrival  – (8 nominations, could win  2)
Moonlight –  ( 8 nominations, could win 2)  
Hacksaw Ridge – (6 nominations, could win 1)
Manchester By the Sea –   (6 nominations, could win  2)
Lion  – (6 nominations, could win at least 2)
Fences  –   (4 nominations, could win at least 2)
Hell or High Water  – (4 nominations, could win at least 1)
Hidden Figures –   (3 nominations, could win at least 1)

As in 2014 and 2013, there are 9 nominees for best picture 2017 (2016 and 2015  had 8). There is good news this year with the most media-worthy is that Meryl Streep is nominated for the 20th time and there are diverse nominations across many categories. So  #NoMoreOscarsSoWhite or #OscarsGoWhitely. I don't understand why Amy Adams wasn't included in the nominations for Arrival

The Oscars are voted on by members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. More information on the voting process is available at the Academy's website (oscar.go.com).

More Oscar nomination coverage is at the Official Annual Academy Awards -- Oscar.com and visit the “Oscar Nominee” section of the Website. My picks are in the category headers below. Oscar.com is also interactive and has a "My Picks" section at http://oscar.go.com/mypicks.   I've also included links to more information about the films and noted if any nominees have had previous Oscar nominations/wins in the listings below:

Picture:   My pick, La La Land, of course.   WINNER:"TBA"
Arrival, Shawn Levy, Dan Levine, Aaron Ryder and David Linde, Producers
Fences, Scott Rudin, Denzel Washington and Todd Black, Producers (8th Academy Award nominations for Rudin and Washington)
Hacksaw Ridge,  Bill Mechanic and David Permut Producers
Hell or High Water, Carla Hacken and Julie Yorn, Producers
Hidden Figures, Donna Gigliotti, Peter Chernin, Jenno Topping, Pharrell Williams and Theodore Melfi, Producers (4th Academy Award nomination for Gigliotti, 1 Oscar win)
La La Land, Fred Berger, Jordan Horowitz and Marc Platt, Producers (2nd Academy Award nomination for Platt)
Lion, Emile Sherman, Iain Canning and Angie Fielder, Producers (2nd Academy Award nominations for Sherman and Canning,  both have 1 Oscar win)
Manchester By the Sea, Matt Damon, Kimberly Steward, Chris Moore, Lauren Beck and Kevin J. Walsh, Producers (5th Academy Award nomination for Damon, 1 Oscar win)
Moonlight, Adele Romanski, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner, Producers (5th Academy Award nomination for Gardner, 1 Oscar win, 4th Academy Award nomination for Kleiner, 1 Oscan win)

Actor in a Leading Role:   This is a tough one. There are 3 who can win this Manchester's Casey Affleck, La La Land's Ryan Gosling and Fence's Denzel Washington- I picked Ryan Gosling on Oscar Challenge.   WINNER:"TBD"
Casey Affleck, Manchester By the Sea (2nd Academy Award nomination)
Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
Ryan Gosling, La La Land (2nd Academy Award nomination)  
Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic (2nd Academy Award nomination)  
Denzel Washington, Fences (8th Academy Award nomination, 2 wins)

Actress in a Leading Role: They were all awesome but I have to pick La La Land's Emma Stone, she was so amazing I forgot it was her. WINNER: TBA
♦ Isabelle Huppert, Elle
♦ Ruth Negga, Loving
♦ Natalie Portman, Jackie (3rd Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win)
♦ Emma Stone, La La Land (2rd Academy Award nomination)
♦ Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins (20th Oscar nomination, 3 wins)

Actor in a Supporting Role: Undecided – could be Jeff Bridges or Michael Shannon but I picked Mahershala Ali on Oscar Challenge.     WINNER: TBA
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water  (7th Academy Award nomination for Bridges)  
Lucas Hedges, Manchester By the Sea
Dev Patel, Lion
Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals (2nd Academy Award nomination for Shannon)

Actress in a Supporting Role:  I think it's going to be Viola Davis, although I might change after I see other flicks.  WINNER: TBA
Viola Davis, Fences (3rd Academy Award nomination)
Naomie Harris, Moonlight    
Nicole Kidman, Lion   (4th Academy Award nomination)
Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures
♦  Michelle Williams, Manchester By the Sea 

Animated Feature Film:  Toss up between Moana, or Zootopia; I picked Zootopia on Oscar Challenge.  WINNER: TBA
Kubo and the Two Strings, Travis Knight (2nd Academy Award nomination) and Arianne Sutner  
Moana, John Musker (2nd Academy Award nomination), Ron Clements (3rd Academy Award nomination), and Osnat Shurer  
My Life as a Zucchini, Claude Barras and Max Karli
The Red Turtle, Michael Dudok de Wit and Toshio Suzuki (3rd Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win)
Zootopia, Byron Howard (2nd Academy Award nomination), Rich Moore (2nd Academy Award nomination), and Clark Spencer

Cinematography: My pick, La La Land.  "WINNER: TBA"
Arrival, Bradford Young (historical1st black cinematographer to be nominated) 
La La Land, Linus Sandgren
Lion, Greig Fraser
Moonlight, James Laxton 
Silence, Rodrigo Prieto (2nd Academy Award nomination)

Costume Design: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Jackie or La La Land; Changed my pick to La La Land. WINNER: "TBA"
Allied,  Joanna Johnston (2nd Academy Award nomination)
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Colleen Atwood (12th Academy Award nomination, 3 Oscar wins)
Florence Foster Jenkins, Consolata Boyle (2nd Academy Award nomination)
Jackie, Madeline Fontaine
La La Land, Mary Zophres (2nd Academy Award nomination)

Directing:  My pick, La La Land's Damien Chazelle. WINNER: "TBA"
Denis Villeneuve, Arrival 
Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge (3rd Academy Award nomination, 2 Oscar wins)
Damien Chazelle, La La Land (3rd Academy Award nomination includes other for Original screenplay)
Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester By the Sea (4th Academy Award nomination includes other for Original screenplay)
Barry Jenkins, Moonlight  (4th-ever black director nominee,  (2nd Academy Award nomination includes other for adapted screenplay)

Documentary Feature:  Hard to decide, depending if political correctness determines,  13th or O.J.: Made in America could win; my first pick was Life Animated but changed to OJ: Made in America.    WINNER:"TBA"
Fire at Sea, Gianfranco Rosi and Donatella Palermo
I Am Not Your Negro, Raoul Peck, Rémi Grellety and Hébert Peck
Life Animated, Roger Ross Williams (2nd Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win), and Julie Goldman 
O.J.: Made in America, Ezra Edelman and Caroline Waterlow
13th,  Ava DuVernay, Spencer Averick and Howard Barish

Documentary Short Subject: My pick,  Joe's Violin. WINNER:"TBA"
Extremis, Dan Krauss (2nd Academy Award nomination)
4.1 MilesDaphne Matziaraki
Joe’s ViolinKahane Cooperman and Raphaela Neihausen
Watani: My HomelandMarcel Mettelsiefen and Stephen Ellis
The White Helmets, Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara (2nd Academy Award nominations for both Einsiedel and Natasegara)

Film Editing:  My pick,  La La Land. "TBA"
♦ Arrival, Joe Walker (2nd Academy Award nomination) 
♦ Hacksaw Ridge, John Gilbert (2nd Academy Award nomination) 
♦ Hell or High Water, Jake Roberts 
♦ La La Land, Tom Cross (2nd Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win) 
♦ Moonlight, Nat Sanders and Joi McMillon 

Foreign Language Film: Another touch one, toss up between Toni Erdmann or The Salesman, I picked The Salesman.  WINNER:"TBA"
♦ Land of Mine, Denmark; Directed by Martin Zandvliet (12 Academy Award nominations for country, 3 Oscar wins)
♦ A Man Called OveSweden; Directed by Hannes Holm (15 Academy Award nominations for country, 3 Oscar wins)
♦ The SalesmanIran; Directed by Asghar Farhadi  (3 Academy Award nominations for country, 1 Oscar win) 
♦ TannaAustralia; Directed by Bentley Dean and Martin Butler 
♦ Toni ErdmannGermany; Directed by Maren Ade (10 Academy Award nominations for country, 2 Oscar wins)

Makeup and Hairstyling: I keep changing my mind from Star Trek or A Man Called Ove but now I have changed it back to Star Trek. WINNER:"TBA"
♦ A Man Called Ove, Eva von Bahr and Love Larson (2nd Academy Award nominations for Bahr and Larson) 
♦ Star Trek Beyond, Joel Harlow and Richard Alonzo (3rd Academy Award nomination for Harlow, 1 win)
♦ Suicide Squad, Alessandro Bertolazzi, Giorgio Gregorini and Christopher Nelson

Music (Original Score):  My pick, La La Land. WINNER:"TBA"
Jackie, Mica Levi
La La Land, Justin Hurwitz
Lion, Dustin O'Halloran and Volker Bertelmann (aka Hauschka)  
Moonlight, Nicholas Britell
Passengers, Thomas Newman (14th Academy Award nomination)

Music (Original Song): My pick, La La Land, Audition or City of Stars. "TBD"
“Audition (The Fools Who Dream),” La La Land, Music by Justin Hurwitz; Lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
“Can’t Stop the Feeling,” Trolls, Music and Lyric by Justin Timberlake, Max Martin and Karl Johan Schuster
“City of Stars,” La La Land, Music by Justin Hurwitz; Lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
“The Empty Chair,” Jim: The James Foley Story, Music and Lyric by J. Ralph (3rd Academy Award nomination) and Sting (4th Academy Award nomination)
“How Far I’ll Go,” Moana, Music and Lyric by Lin-Manuel Miranda

Production Design:  My pick, La La Land.  WINNER:"TBA"
Arrival,Stuart Craig (Production Design - Patrice Vermette (Production Design - 2nd Academy Award nomination); Paul Hotte (Set Decoration)
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Stuart Craig (Production Design - 11 Academy Award nominations, 3 Oscar wins); Anna Pinnock (Set Decoration - 6 Academy Award nominations, 1 Oscar win)
Hail, Caesar!, Jess Gonchor (Production Design - 2nd Academy Award nomination); Nancy Haigh (Set Decoration - 7th Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win)
La La Land, David Wasco (Production Design); Sandy Reynolds-Wasco (Set Decoration)
Passengers,  Guy Hendrix Dyas (Production Design); Gene Serdena (Set Decoration)

Short Film (Animated):  Could be Pearl but I picked Piper. WINNER:"TBA"
Blind Vaysha, Theodore Ushev
Borrowed Time, Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj
Pear Cider and Cigarettes, Robert Valley and Cara Speller
Pearl, Patrick Osborne
Piper, Alan Barillaro

Live Action Short Subject:  Could be either Silent Night, Timecode or Sing, I picked Timecode on Oscar Challenge.  :"TBA"
♦ Ennemis IntérieursSélim Azzazi 
♦ La Femme et le TGVTimo von Gunten and Giacun Caduff
♦ Silent NightsAske Bang and Kim Magnusson
♦ SingKristof Deák and Anna Udvardy 
♦ TimecodeJuanjo Giménez

Sound Editing:  Hacksaw Ridge, Arrival or La La Land; I picked Arrival on Oscar Challenge. WINNER:"TBA"
ArrivalSylvain Bellemare
Deepwater HorizonWylie Stateman and Renée Tondelli 
Hacksaw RidgeRobert Mackenzie and Andy
La La LandAi-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan 
SullyAlan Robert Murray and Bub Asman

Sound Mixing: Could be Arrival but I picked La La Land. WINNER:"TBA"
Arrival,  Bernard Gariépy Strobl and Claude La Haye
Hacksaw Ridge,  Kevin O'Connell (21st Academy Award nomination), Andy Wright, Robert Mackenzie and Peter Grace
La La Land,  Andy Nelson (21st Academy Award nomination, 2 Oscar wins), Ai-Ling Lee and Steve A. Morrow
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,  David Parker (8th Academy Award nomination, 2 Oscar wins) , Christopher Scarabosio (3rd Academy Award nomination) and Stuart Wilson (2nd Academy Award nomination)
♦ 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi,  Greg P. Russell (17th Academy Award nomination), Gary Summers (11th Academy Award nomination, 4 Oscar wins), Jeffrey J. Haboush (4th Academy Award nomination), Mac Ruth (2nd Academy Award nomination)

Visual Effects:  Could be Dr. Strange or The Jungle Book but I changed back to The Jungle Book. WINNER:"TBA"
Deepwater Horizon, Craig Hammack, Jason Snell, Jason Billington and Burt Dalton 4th Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win) 
Doctor StrangeStephane Ceretti, Richard Bluff, Vincent Cirelli (2nd Academy Award nomination) and Paul Corbould (2nd Academy Award nomination)
The Jungle BookRobert Legato (4th Academy Award, 2 Oscar wins), Adam Valdez, Andrew R. Jones (3rd Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win) and Dan Lemmon (3rd Academy Award nomination) 
Kubo and the Two StringsSteve Emerson, Oliver Jones, Brian McLean and Brad Schiff
Rogue One: A Star Wars StoryJohn Knoll (6th Academy Award nomination, 1 Oscar win), Mohen Leo, Hal Hickel (4th Academy Award, 1 Oscar win)  and Neil Corbould (5th Academy Award nomination, 2 Oscar wins)

Writing (Adapted Screenplay): Moonlight or Hidden Figures; I chose Moonlight on Oscar Challenge. WINNER:"TBA"
Arrival, Eric Heisserer
Fences, August Wilson
Hidden Figures, Allison Schroeder and Theodore Melfi
Lion, Luke Davis
Moonlight, Barry Jenkins with story by Tarell Alvin McCranley

Writing (Original Screenplay): My pick, La La Land.  WINNER:"TBA"
Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan
La La Land, Damien Chazelle
The Lobster, Yorgos Lanthimos and Efthimis Filippou
Manchester By the Sea, Kenneth Lonergan
20th Century Women, Mike Mills


My previous scores have been averaging about 85% right on Oscar.com. Wonder what my score will be this time.  Whatever my score this year, I'll share it on Facebook and this blog. 


Any photos are courtesy of Wikimedia unless otherwise noted. All other photos will be credited as required.


2017 Oscar resources:

♦  Oscar nominations 2017, The Telegraph http://www.telegraph.co.uk/films/2017/01/24/oscar-nominations-2017-live-full-list/
♦ Oscar predictions 2017, Awards Circuit http://www.awardscircuit.com/oscar-predictions/best-cinematography/
89th Academy Awards, Wikipedia.org


2016  Oscar resources:

2016 Oscar predictions: Variety
2016 Oscar nominations, Oscar.com
88th Academy Awards - We all dream in gold, Wikipedia.org
Oscar Nominations: 'The Revenant' & 'Mad Max' Lead Way; Leo Is In, Ridley Scott Is Not, Deadline AwardsLine

Oscar 2015 resources:

♦ 2015 Oscar nominations: Complete list; ‘Selma’ snubbed; ‘Birdman’ and ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ lead with nine  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/style-blog/wp/2015/01/15/2015-oscar-nominations-complete-coverage/
♦   Oscars 2015: 'Boyhood,' 'Birdman' Score Big Nominations  http://www.rollingstone.com/movies/news/oscars-2015-boyhood-birdman-score-big-nominations-20150115
♦  Oscars 2015: Nominations preview and predictions http://www.cbsnews.com/news/oscar-2015-nomination-predictions-who-will-be-in-the-running/
♦  Oscars 2015: 'Birdman,' 'Budapest' top nominations  http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/movies/chi-oscars-nominations-20150115-story.html
♦  Academy Awards nominations 2015: our predictions http://www.theguardian.com/film/filmblog/2015/jan/15/oscar-nominations-2015-our-predictions

Oscar 2014 resources:


♦ 2014 Oscar nominations: ‘Gravity,’ and ‘Hustle’ lead with 10 nominations including best picture, Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/moviesnow/la-et-mn-oscar-nominations-2014-main,0,500124.story#axzz2qZqycltO
♦ Oscar.com 2014 nominations, http://www.oscars.org/awards/academyawards/86/nomineesByPicture.html
♦ Who’s gonna get picked ? Predicting the 2014 Oscar nominations http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/15/showbiz/movies/2014-oscar-predictions-nominations/
♦ Meet the 2014 Oscar Nominees, RottenTomatoes http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/15/showbiz/movies/2014-oscar-predictions-nominations/
 



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Nominations are at Oscar.com page at http://oscar.go.com/news/nominations/oscar-nominations-2016-the-complete-list-of-nominees