Hanging around –
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (@GovChristie) was left hanging after a Dallas Cowboys win on Sunday, when his high-5 appeal was ignored. Political commentators have decided that it will damage his chances of becoming a Republican presidential candidate.
Google extends Chromecast to audio –
The Chromecast dongle is now able to plug into amplifiers and powered speakers to “cast” music from any music app. Similar to the video service, users use their phone to control the music, which is then played directly through the speaker from a wi-fi router. Apps already compatible include Deezer, Google Play Music, iHeartRadio, NPR One, Pandora, Rdio and TuneIn. Spotify is currently included.
Ghost in the Shell –
Scarlett Johansson to play Motoko Kusanagi in the film version of Ghost in the Shell Scarlett Johansson
Crufts dog dies after suspected poisoning –
A dog has died after competing at Crufts, amid claims he was poisoned. Three-year-old Thendara Satisfaction, known as Jagger, is understood to have collapsed and died after returning home to Belgium on Friday. Police in Belgium are investigating and a full toxicology report is expected next week. The husband of Jagger’s co-owner said: “I can only hope it wasn’t an act of jealousy by another competitor, but just a lunatic.” Jagger, who came second in his class at Birmingham’s NEC on Thursday, is owned by Belgian Aleksandra Lauwers and Leicester-based breeder Dee Milligan-Bott. [BBC] See List of the Day.
Solar plane takes of to fly round the world –
A record-breaking attempt to fly around the world in a solar-powered plane has got under way from Abu Dhabi. The aircraft – called Solar Impulse-2 – took off from the Emirate, heading east to Muscat in Oman. Over the next five months, it will skip from continent to continent, crossing both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans in the process. Andre Borschberg was at the controls of the single-seater vehicle as it took off at 07:12 local time (03:12 GMT). He will share the pilot duties in due course with fellow Swiss, Bertrand Piccard. See Video of the Day.
Wheels come off epic plan –
Producers working on the remake of the Oscar-winning Ben Hur have been barred from shooting the epic chariot scene at the Circus Maximus. Filmmakers already on location in Rome and the southern city of Matera reportedly made a request to use the ancient stadium immortalised by the film in December. But it was feared the decision to bring hundreds of extras and heavy vehicles into a fragile archaeological site would lead to public outcry. [Daily Mail]
Brendon McCullum: New Zealand captain breaks fastest Test century record –
New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum scored the fastest ever Test century in a majestic display against Australia on the first day of the second Test. The 34-year-old needed just 54 balls to reach his 12th century in his 101st and final Test before retiring. It beat the mark of 56 balls set by West Indies great Sir Viv Richards against England in 1986, and equalled by Pakistan’s Misbah-ul-Haq in 2014. “I was trying to hit every ball for four or six,” said McCullum. “Viv was my idol growing up, he was an incredible cricketer. I’m almost a little bit of embarrassed to go past him, to be honest.” He went on to score 145 off of 79 balls. [BBC] See List of the Day
Prince Dies at 57: Iconic Musical Genius Found Dead in Paisley Park –
Prince died today at age 57 at his Paisley Park home and studio in Minneapolis, his publicist confirmed to the Associated Press. TMZ first reported the news. According to a press release sent from the Carver County Sheriff’s Department this afternoon, deputies arrived at Paisley Park at 9:43 a.m. and found Prince unresponsive in the elevator. After CPR attempts were unsuccessful, he was pronounced dead at 10:07 a.m. The cause of death has not yet been determined, and Carver County with assistance from Hennepin County Sheriffs and the Midwest Medical Examiner’s Office are investigating. Prince was hospitalized last week after his plane for was forced to make an emergency landing in Moline, Ill. Released a few hours later, a rep told TMZ that he had been battling a bad case of the flu. One of the most iconic musicians in music history, Prince’s extensive career grew out of the music scene of his native Minneapolis, where he lived his entire life. His 1978 debut album For You and self-titled second LP, released in October 1979, kicked off an incredibly prolific run of albums that included 1999, Purple Rain, Around The World In A Day, Sign O The Times and Batman, among others, throughout the 1980s at a clip of nearly one per year, evolving with each release. [Billboard] Prince in 2008
Queen’s 90th birthday: Beacons lit amid UK celebrations –
The Queen has lit the first of more than 900 beacons lighting up across the UK and overseas as part of her 90th birthday celebrations. Prince Philip, the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall then joined the monarch at a private dinner in Windsor Castle. Earlier, cheering crowds lined the streets in Windsor as the Queen took part in a walkabout. At the lighting of the beacon in Windsor, the Prince of Wales, referring to his mother, said: “I find it very hard to believe that you’ve reached your 90th year and I suddenly realised the other day that I have known you since you were 22 years old. “But this, ladies and gentleman, is a very special occasion and this beacon that her majesty is about to light will also represent – as it lights other beacons across the nation – the love and affection with which you are held throughout this country and the Commonwealth. [BBC]
Solar plane slowly soaring from Hawaii to California –
A solar plane on an around-the-world journey has reached the point of no return over the Pacific Ocean after departing Hawaii, and now it’s California or bust. The plane was cruising over the cold northern Pacific late Thursday at about 20,000 feet with a nearly-full battery as night descended, according to the website that’s documenting the journey of Solar Impulse 2. After some uncertainty about winds, the plane took off from Hawaii and was on course to land in Mountain View, California, in about three days. The crew that helped it take off was clearing out of its Hawaiian hangar and headed for the mainland for the weekend arrival. Pilot Bertrand Piccard is flying this leg of the journey. [AP]
The Ethiopian Army crosses the border into South Sudan with the latter’s approval in search of more than 100 children who were kidnapped and spirited across the border in a surprise attack by unknown assailants that also killed 208 people a few days ago. (Al Jazeera)
The Vatican suspends PricewaterhouseCoopers’ audit of its finances over questions whether proper procedures were followed when the December 2015 contract, reportedly worth $3 million, was enacted. Analysts say this move exposes the rift between the church’s old guard and supporters of financial reform, and raises questions about the Catholic Church’s commitment to cleaning up its finances. (Reuters)(The Guardian)(BBC)
Disasters and accidents
More than 100 are feared dead in an early summer heatwave in India which has forced the closure of schools. (Reuters)
At least 24 people are killed, 136 others injured, and eight workers still missing from yesterday’s blast at the major Clorados 3 petrochemical plant of Petroquimica Mexicana de Vinilo. Nineteen people remain hospitalized, with 13 in serious condition. The plant is run by Mexichem under agreement with Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex), the national petrochemical company, in Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, Mexico, on the country’s southern Gulf of Mexico coast. Pemex had an earlier fire at the same facility in February 2016 that killed one worker; also that month, an offshore Pemex Gulf platform fire killed two and injured eight.(Reuters)(AP)
The government of El Salvador unveils and deploys a new heavily armed special forces unit to fight criminal gangs in rural areas of the country. Officials say it will target gang leaders who left the cities because of a government crackdown. (BBC)