Richard Sherman has definitely played more Pokémon than you

2016-02-09 14:31:05

Don't talk to Richard Sherman about Mew. It seems that the elusive 151st Pokémon may represent one of the darkest times in the Seattle Seahawk cornerback's young life. When he spoke to Mashable about his love for the gaming franchise, Sherman almost didn't reveal the "most frustrating moment" of his time playing. See also: 40,000 sign petition to make Danny DeVito the voice of Pikachu Twenty-seven-year-old Sherman has been a diehard Pokémon fan since the original Pokémon Red and Blue came to America in 1998. He spent plenty of time playing the Pokémon trading card game as well. "At the beginning, I would trade pieces of candy for my best friend's doubles," he said. "I ended up with a lot of Weedles, Caterpies and Growlithes, but my goal was always to get a holographic Charizard." The passion for Pokémon led him to the Game Boy games — Sherman said he always picked Charmander as his starting Pokémon — and into the Nintendo 64 release of Pokémon Stadium. "I always had Pokémon Blue and Yellow with me, and was always ready to trade," said Sherman, who took the "Gotta catch 'em all" mantra to heart. "I got even more excited when Pokemon Stadium came out. All of the Pokémon were finally in 3D, and it was awesome." In the quest to collect all of the original 151, Sherman — like other Poké-fans at the time — was desperate to get his hands on the rare, psychically charged cat Mew. Toys 'R Us ran a promotion in which anyone who brought in a ticket stub to 1998's Pokémon: The First Movie to a store could download their very own Mew. "I got my Mew to level 65. It was pretty unstoppable," said Sherman. But after he and his brother had a fight, his brother struck back by creating a new save file on his Pokémon game, effectively erasing all the old data. And little Mew. This was before the time of cloud saves and back-up hard drives. Back then, losing a game save was permanent — and devastating. "That was hundreds and hundreds of hours of work into that game gone, and there was no way I was able to even get another one." But that didn't put Sherman off Pokémon for good. He still plays on his DS on the road, and will even trade and battle occasionally with his teammate Doug Baldwin, Seahawks wide receiver. That continued love explains how Sherman got involved with promoting the series' upcoming 20th anniversary on Feb. 27, which even got its own Super Bowl ad spot Sunday night. "The game is incredible, and intense, and takes such dedication," he said. "It really sets you up to train hard for things later in life." Have something to add to this story? Share it in the comments.

Twitter users decry reported plan to prioritize tweets

2016-02-08 03:31:05

NEW YORK The hashtag #RIPTwitter became the top trending U.S. item on Twitter on Saturday, after a report from BuzzFeed said the company is planning to change how it displays users’ tweets.The BuzzFeed report, which went live on Friday night and did not disclose the source of its information, said the social media platform will reorder tweets to prioritize those it believes more users will want to see. Currently, Twitter (TWTR.N) arranges tweets in chronological order.The response to the news on Twitter was overwhelmingly negative, with the hashtag #RIPTwitter suggesting many users of the micro-blogging site believe the changes would mean the death of the company.Many users were upset that tweets from accounts with fewer followers could possibly be suppressed under the new system. Others complained that the changes would make Twitter too much like Facebook (FB.O), which arranges content through the use of an algorithm. “Dear Twitter, don’t try to be like Facebook, we don’t like Facebook #RIPTwitter,” tweeted ana (@dearcalumthood) on Saturday.“Clearly the motto 'if it ain't broke don't fix it' is something @twitter isn't familiar with #RIPTwitter,” tweeted EldestSalvatore (@EldestDamon) on Saturday. A spokesperson for Twitter declined to comment.Twitter has come under increasing pressure to boost user growth, as it struggles to attain advertising revenues equaling those of its larger Facebook rival. Last month, Twitter came under fire when it announced a new feature that would allow users to post tweets up to 10,000 characters long, up from its previous limit of 140 characters. (Reporting by Amy Tennery; Editing by Tom Brown)

Twitter users decry reported plan to prioritize tweets

2016-02-07 18:01:07

NEW YORK The hashtag #RIPTwitter became the top trending U.S. item on Twitter on Saturday, after a report from BuzzFeed said the company is planning to change how it displays users’ tweets.The BuzzFeed report, which went live on Friday night and did not disclose the source of its information, said the social media platform will reorder tweets to prioritize those it believes more users will want to see. Currently, Twitter (TWTR.N) arranges tweets in chronological order.The response to the news on Twitter was overwhelmingly negative, with the hashtag #RIPTwitter suggesting many users of the micro-blogging site believe the changes would mean the death of the company.Many users were upset that tweets from accounts with fewer followers could possibly be suppressed under the new system. Others complained that the changes would make Twitter too much like Facebook (FB.O), which arranges content through the use of an algorithm. “Dear Twitter, don’t try to be like Facebook, we don’t like Facebook #RIPTwitter,” tweeted ana (@dearcalumthood) on Saturday.“Clearly the motto 'if it ain't broke don't fix it' is something @twitter isn't familiar with #RIPTwitter,” tweeted EldestSalvatore (@EldestDamon) on Saturday. A spokesperson for Twitter declined to comment.Twitter has come under increasing pressure to boost user growth, as it struggles to attain advertising revenues equaling those of its larger Facebook rival. Last month, Twitter came under fire when it announced a new feature that would allow users to post tweets up to 10,000 characters long, up from its previous limit of 140 characters. (Reporting by Amy Tennery; Editing by Tom Brown)

Italian consortium set to win giant Chile telescope contract

2016-02-06 17:30:10

SANTIAGO An Italian consortium, including construction company Astaldi Spa, is close to securing a contract to build the world's largest telescope in the Chilean desert, project owner the European Southern Observatory (ESO) said on Thursday.The ESO said its finance committee had agreed to enter into final discussions with the consortium, which was the winning bidder to design, manufacture, transport and build the main dome and structure for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT).The consortium includes major Italian builder Cimolai and subcontractor the EIE Group, as well as Astaldi.The ESO said in a statement that it hoped to sign the contract by May but did not give further details. It has said previously that building the E-ELT would cost around $1.2 billion (1.1 billion euros) at 2012 prices. The E-ELT will have a primary mirror 43 yards (39 meters) in diameter, which under current plans would make it by far the biggest telescope in operation worldwide when it begins observations in the mid-2020s.Chile's clear desert skies have made it a prime location for stargazers and a new generation of giant telescopes at various stages of planning and construction. These include the Giant Magellan Telescope, which should briefly be the world's largest in the early 2020s before being overtaken by the E-ELT. The E-ELT's goals include observations of the atmosphere around rocky exoplanets, which may yield signs of extraterrestrial life. The massive telescope should also be able to look back at the earliest moments after the Big Bang and help answer questions related to the expansion of the universe. (Reporting by Rosalba O'Brien; Editing by Tom Brown)

LinkedIn shares dive more than 40 percent, $11 billion wiped out

2016-02-05 21:01:06

LinkedIn Corp's shares plunged as much as 43 percent on Friday, wiping out nearly $11 billion of market value, after the social network for professionals shocked Wall Street with a revenue forecast that fell far short of expectations.The stock sank to a three-year low of $109.50, registering its sharpest decline since the company's high-profile public listing in 2011.At least seven brokerages downgraded the stock from "buy" to "hold" or their equivalents, saying the company's lofty valuation was no longer justified."With a lower growth profile, we believe that LinkedIn should not enjoy the premium multiple it has grown accustomed to," Mizuho Securities USA Inc analysts wrote in a note.The brokerage downgraded the stock to "neutral" and slashed its target price to $150 from $258.Raymond James, Cowen and Co, BMO Capital Markets, J.P.Morgan Securities, RBC Capital Markets and Suntrust Robinson also downgraded the stock.At least 22 brokerages cut their price targets, with RBC slashing its target by almost half to $156.LinkedIn forecast full-year revenue of $3.60-$3.65 billion, missing the average analyst estimate of $3.91 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S."This would imply that LinkedIn will grow around 15 percent in 2017 and 10 percent in 2018," the Mizuho analysts said. Underscoring the slowdown in growth, LinkedIn said online ad revenue growth slowed to 20 percent in the fourth quarter from 56 percent a year earlier.Adding fuel to the selloff was the release of the U.S. monthly jobs report, which showed employment gains slowed more than expected in January.LinkedIn's hiring business, called Talent Solutions, is the company's biggest unit by revenue."It's not a great day to have reported tough guidance," said Randle Reece, an analyst with Avondale Partners LLC. "The mediocre employment report from the Labor department just amplified the reaction of anything employment sensitive today." RBC analysts said they had thought LinkedIn was on the cusp of "fundamentally positive" change."We were wrong," they said in a client note.LinkedIn's disappointing forecast and a weak forecast from data analytics software maker Tableau Software Inc reverberated through the tech sector on Friday, sending the Nasdaq Composite down nearly 3 percent.BLOATED VALUATIONS As of Thursday, LinkedIn shares were trading at 50 times forward 12-month earnings versus Twitter Inc's 29.5 times, Facebook Inc's 33.8 and Alphabet Inc's 20.9, making it one of the most expensive stocks in the tech sector.Even after the selloff, LinkedIn's shares may still be overvalued, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data.LinkedIn should be trading at $71.79, a 35 percent discount to the stock's Friday's low of $75.54, according to StarMine's Intrinsic Valuation model, which takes analysts' five-year estimates and models the growth trajectory over a longer period.LinkedIn has been spending heavily on expansion by buying companies, hiring sales personnel and growing outside the United States, but is now facing pressure in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific due to macro-economic issues."Given those macro concerns and LinkedIn's recent execution issues, we expect investors will demand financial outperformance before there is meaningful recovery in LNKD's multiple," Goldman Sachs analysts wrote in a client note.Up to Thursday's close, LinkedIn stock had already lost nearly a quarter of its value in the last three months. (Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee and Tenzin Pema in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

Older Post
Journalists cry foul: El Chapo granted power to edit Sean Penn's profile
Greg Hardy assault photos: More damning proof of NFL priorities
Australian who claims he fought Islamic State returns home