My aunt forwarded this to me some time ago and it was so funny, I thought I’d share it with all of you 🙂
The mobile device application brought to us by Rovio, “Angry Birds,” seems to have received its second…or third…or fourth wind. According to a New York Times article, with its holiday releases—Halloween, Christmas, and Valentine Day—“Angry Birds” has reached almost approximately 100 million downloads.
“Angry Birds” is fascinating in how its reported development cost was only about $150,000 when games like Sony’s “God of War III” came out to a $44 million expense. Typically, companies the size of Rovio are unable to absorb flops in the games they develop. But with overhead costs as low as what they incurred and the amazingly high popularity they achieved, there seems no place else for the company to go but up.
“We’re building an integrated entertainment franchise where merchandising, games, movies, TV, cartoons, and comics all come together, like Disney 2.0,” said Peter Vesterbacka, the head of Rovio’s business development.
And Mr. Vesterbacka’s Disney reference shouldn’t be taken lightly, either. Rovio is essentially following in the footsteps of early Disney in how they’re trying to brand the characters in their little series through their flourishing line of merchandise like cute plush toys much like how Mickey Mouse was first established by Steamboat Willie and was cemented by similar toys, comics, cartoons, and even his own video game series’ .
What’s most interesting about Rovio is its potential for expansion. The company has recently secured $42 million in a financing round led by venture capital firms Accel Partners and Atomico Ventures. But why would the company need to secure fundraising when its profit margins are as high as they are now? Surely the ad revenue itself should have supplied the company with enough money to create another sequel, even if they spent over ten times the amount to develop it as they did the original game.
But Mr. Vesterbacka and the rest of the Rovio team have got their minds on bigger and better things. One of the partners at Accel Partners happens to sit on the boards of Facebook and Wal-Mart Stores, both of which could play vital roles in the future of the company. Rovio plans to bring a new, cooperative version of its game to the Facebook platform this spring. Soon enough, millions of people will be mounting assaults against pig fortresses with their friends from all around the world. And as their virtual reach extends, so too does the companies physical presence as they consider branching out from Helsinki, Finland to cities within China, the United States, and South Korea.
All that’s left to do now is wait for the Broadway musical about the plight…of the Angry Birds!
“Flash back a little more than one month ago to December 17th of 2010—Mohamed Bouazizi, a 26-year-old Tunisian citizen and recent college graduate with a computer science degree, had started a fruit and vegetable stand to make ends meet. There was already a sense of unrest n the air as Tunisia was supposedly undergoing some of the worst unemployment rates in recent history as well as a spike in food prices across the country…”
Click here to continue reading the rest of this post. I posted it to a blog called Constantly Connected which is maintained by my technology research group through my university’s honors program.
Almost exactly two weeks ago, live from Zurich, FIFA announced the host countries for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. These announcements came after impressive presentations made by each of the bidding teams:
Russia 2018’s Ready to Inspire campaign’s central selling point was that they, of all the different parties, had the most to offer the world: “I have given a lot of presentations recently, but never one as important as this. Important to so many people and for all the right reasons,” opened Alexey Sorokin, CEO of Russia’s 2018 Bid Committee, “We can show you what you cannot find in our bid books, we can show you what‘s in our hearts…This morning we have just 30 minutes to share with you the collective passion and pride of 145 million Russians who would like nothing more than to welcome the Fifa World Cup to our home for the first time in history. History, and the making of it, is a powerful theme in our bid…Our bid and our vision is about opportunity for Russia and opportunity for Fifa—for Russia, these opportunities are clear. For Fifa, these opportunities include new markets, new stadiums, new players and fans, and an assurance of an impeccably hosted tournament…”
It was clear from early on in their presentation that Russia was bringing some of their biggest guns to bear in this bid as some of their most culturally relevant stars were present, including a vital Andrey Arshavin—their national team captain—Yelena Isinbayeva, a two-time Olympic gold medalist pole vaulter, opera stars, etc. Isinbayeva’s delivery in her speech, in my opinion, was very weak, but her message of how much Fifa has positively empowered female athletes, and how the organization can continue to make a difference here, must have rang true to the decision makers.
Their first video featured a young soccer player dreaming of playing in the World Cup while the audio boomed an inspiring, “Russia Never Sleeps!” frequently throughout the duration of the promo.
Their technical video, The Jewels of Russia, was hosted and narrated by a stunning woman whose identity, despite some Googling, leaves her nameless for now.
“It is true that if awarded the 2018 World Cup, Russia has much to do, but the reality is that most of the infrastructure development is already planned and budgeted for and the World Cup will just accelerate this development,” said Alexey as he went on to outline the four cluster plan they have for their stadiums, centrally planned around the Russian capital of Moscow. Their plans for accommodating the inevitably huge surge in fans are impressive and those with match tickets were guaranteed free inter-country transportation between the 13 hosting cities.
Why should Russia be chosen to host the 2018 World Cup? (according to their Deputy Prime Minister).
Welcome to Russia, fellow futbol fans! Let’s make the best of it.
Needless to say, there remains much anger and dissent amongst those in support of England’s failing bid as they have not hosted the World Cup in 44 years despite how it is where soccer, as we know it today, was “invented.”
2022 World Cup Host: Qatar
Well it looks like for once the United States was, in the end, defeated by the Middle East despite the best efforts of Bill Clinton, Morgan Freeman, Landon Donovan, and Attorney General Eric Holder (not to mention a video appearance by Obama).
The US was thought to be the favorites and performed well with a strong bid, but perhaps it was one of their main selling points which backfired on them? Yes, we are the most diverse country in the world, there’s nothing negative to be said about that. We also would not have required any significant changes to our infrastructure to host the cup, but perhaps this was not looked upon favorably? Wherever the World Cup goes, it is believed that progress, construction, and an economic surge will follow. Could this have been one of the factors leading into the committees’ selection of Qatar? Probably not, but it’s a thought.
Unsurprisingly, Qatar was listed among the “12 More Countries You’ve Never Heard of And The People That Live There,” post on Smosh.com. The website’s rich and informative description of the country tells us all we need to know about Qatar:
“Qatar is owned by one really rich Arab dude that likes to stage bicycle races every day for his personal amusement.”
Well that about sums the country up, but just for you nerds who aren’t satisfied with that flash of brilliance, here’s a little more insight into the State of Qatar. According to several different web sources, Qatar is a Constitutional Monarchy where the Emir (Chief of State) Amir Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani holds the power to name prime ministers and such though the title/rank of emir is hereditary. There’s a messy but interesting history here where they used to be a British protectorate state and how they battled Saudi Arabia and played a role in the 1991 Persian Gulf War, but I won’t go into all of that, but promise me you’ll get around to it before 2022.
But to be clear, Qatar is a much more progressive country than many would think. Many would wrongly assume that because of how the country’s legal system is based on a combination of Islamic and civil law codes, that the country would be rife with inequality between genders and that there would be severe government censorship, when this is not the case. Yes, the television and radio broadcast media are state controlled, but around 1999, the emir lifted press censorship, took steps towards instituting democratic elections, and pushed for woman’s suffrage. It’s 2005 constitution guarantees freedom of expression, assembly, and religion with 30 of the seats within their 45-seat parliament will be decided upon democratically.
This is not to say, however, that Qatar is not without its problems. In fact, I expect that many organizations will rise to oppose this decision—if they haven’t already—due to reports of trafficking and sexual abuse. The country is said to have taken significant steps to tackle this issue, and hopefully the looming date of the cup will speed up the process.
One interesting aspect of all of this is how the expected numbers of fans expected to flood the country’s gates in 2022 will far exceed the entirety of the state’s population of less than 850,000 people. This will surely be interesting to see.
Did you know that Qatar’s team has never even qualified for the World Cup? Well, don’t worry, because the hosting country is guaranteed a slot. Perhaps they will join forces with South Africa to become the second hosting nation to never make it past the first round of the tournament? But I hope this isn’t the case. In my opinion, the World Cup is always a more pleasant experience for everyone when the hosting team fares decently in the grand scheme of things. I remember how watching South Africa get knocked out of the most recent cup was kind of a buzzkill for most people.
What excites me most is the new technology Qatar unveiled in their bid. The stadiums to be built for the cup will mostly be powered by sunlight! Not to mention the climate-control systems they will use to keep the stadiums at decent temperatures despite the blistering heat that is sure to pester the unfortunates not within the structures. But those without the stadium won’t be without their benefits either. To see what I’m talking about, go through the below pictures and then watch the video:
To my surprise, I found many reports online asserting that despite the billions of dollars of corporate sponsorship and additional monetary wealth expected to be brought to the region which is hosting the event, that they can overall be expected to lose billions. Despite these reports, I can’t wait to see what the future holds for Russia, Qatar, and the rest of the world in the years to come.
“You will be proud of us, you will be proud of the Middle East, and I promise you this,” said one of the delegates from Qatar.
You know your audience consists primarily of college kids when your view count drops to single digits during finals week.
But check out these cartoons on your study break for a few laughs 🙂
If you’re a computer programmer, check out these jokes.
If you still haven’t heard about Ireland’s newest declaration of war, click here!
Got this forwarded to me a long time ago. Just saw it again a couple minutes ago and thought I’d share 🙂
The Economy is so bad that:
-I got a pre-declined credit card in the mail.
-I ordered a burger at McDonald’s and the kid behind the counter asked, “Can you afford fries with that?”
-CEO’s are now playing miniature golf.
-If the bank returns your check marked Insufficient Funds,” you call them and ask if they meant you or them.
-Hot Wheels and Matchbox stocks are trading higher than GM.
-McDonald’s is selling the 1/4 ouncer.
-Parents in Beverly Hills fired their nannies and learned their children’s names.
-A truckload of Americans was caught sneaking into Mexico .
-Motel Six won’t leave the light on anymore.
–The Mafia is laying off judges.
-Exxon-Mobil laid off 25 Congressmen.
-Congress says they are looking into this Bernard Madoff scandal. Oh Great!! The guy who made $50 Billion disappear is being investigated by the people who made $1.5 Trillion disappear!
I was so depressed last night thinking about the economy, wars, jobs, my savings, Social Security, retirement funds, etc., I called the Suicide Lifeline. I got a call center in Pakistan , and when I told them I was suicidal, they got all excited, and asked if I could drive a truck!