Apple Store goes down in anticipation of iPad event

If history is to be our guide, the store will be back online after today’s unveiling.

What does Apple still need "to cover?"

What does Apple still need “to cover”?

(Credit: Apple)

It’s an Apple press event day, which can only mean one thing this morning: Its online marketplace is down.

Apple on Tuesday morning took its online store off-line to get it ready to show off the new products the company will announce at the event. Historically, before each major press event, Apple temporarily closes its virtual store to update it with new products.

Check back later for our CNET live blog and read all of today’s Apple news.

Apple is reportedly using today’s event to announce new iPads. Apple is also expected to provide details on the launch of OSX Mavericks and could make an announcement on improvements to its MacBook Pro line. The Mac Pro, which Apple previewed earlier this year at the Worldwide Developers Conference, also might make a showing.

As expected, Apple has remained tight-lipped on its plans and has provided no indication of whether it’ll announce any new products, let alone the long shots like the long-rumored iWatch and high-def Apple TV. The company’s invitation to the event said only that it still has “a lot to cover.”

So, what will Apple announce at its special event? Come back here at 10 a.m. PT to join CNET and find out.

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These 230-Year-Old Charts and Graphs Were the Very First Infographics

The Enlightenment gave us many foundational ideas: Gravity! Democracy! Infographics! Wait, what? Yep. One of the age’s lesser-known byproducts was the niche field of “graphical statistics,” aka data visualization. And it’s made more of an impact on our world that you might imagine.

William Playfair was a Scottish inventor and engineer (and reported scoundrel) who would’ve celebrated his 254th birthday at the end of September. It’s hard to imagine, but before Playfair’s time, words and drawings were two distinct ways of communicating that rarely converged. But as the burgeoning Enlightenment gave birth to modern science and the first traces of the Industrial Revolution, economists, engineers, and historians found a need for a new language: One that could quantify data visually. Playfair, a voracious writer who roamed in the same circles as many of the day’s important thinkers, happened to be in the right place at the right time.

Playfair was often involved with transcribing or interpreting the work of others—which, incidentally, gained him a reputation as a plagiarist. But to convey the data other scientists were publishing, he started to turn to graphics. Beginning in the 1750s, he published a series of charts that represent the first instances of line graphs, bar charts, pie charts, and circle graphs. Below are some of the earliest known data graphics.

The Line Graph

It was Playfair’s older brother—who required him to record every day’s temperature and record them a la the naturalists of the day—who inspired the line graph. It was simply a matter of tallying up each date’s number and connecting the dots.

These 230-Year-Old Charts and Graphs Were the Very First InfographicsS

This chart shows imports and exports from America during the 18th century—that crux in the middle? That’s the Revolutionary War.

These 230-Year-Old Charts and Graphs Were the Very First InfographicsS

It looks complicated, but this 1824 line graph is actually fairly simple: It compares the price of bread and stocks, as well as national expenditures and debt, against wars fought by England between 1770 and 1824.

The Bar Chart

The provenance of the bar chart is less clear. Many scholars attribute it to the fact that Playfair had seen the work of Joseph Priestly, the creator of the first timeline chart—in this case, the biography of a single person.

These 230-Year-Old Charts and Graphs Were the Very First InfographicsS

This 1821 bar chart—quoted by many as one of the first—show a simple but powerful thing: How much a quarter of wheat cost over three centuries, show both in shillings and the days’ wages of a (good) mechanic. The cost in shillings goes up (presumably due to inflation), but the cost in wages goes down as workers’ rights improve.

The Circle Graph and Pie Chart

No one really knows how Playfair dreamt up the pie chart. Some wonder whether it’d always been around—and if Playfair was just the first to actually publish one. “Familiarity has dulled our sense of the importance of Playfair’s diagrams and it is easy to underestimate the ingenuity that was required to invent them,” argues historian Ian Spence in his concise 2005 paper on Playfair (PDF).

These 230-Year-Old Charts and Graphs Were the Very First InfographicsS

This is one of Playfair’s most well-known charts, though it’s tough to find a good scan of it. It shows population size versus land area—all compared to taxation.

These 230-Year-Old Charts and Graphs Were the Very First Infographics

A pie chart showing each state in the United States, part of Playfair’s translation of A Statistical Account of the United States of America by D. F. Donnant.

To us, pie charts hearken back to bad PowerPoint slides of yore (in fact, even data visualization expert Edward Tufte says they should never be used). But the pie, along with the bar chart, were revolutionary in Playfair’s time.

And they’ve had a massive impact on ours: Today, these prototypical forms are almost universal, allowing us to perceive meaning (or non-meaning) in a single glance. It also was a precursor to modern UI design, since it provided a common vocabulary for expressing information visually.

Sources: Princeton | PTAK | No Humble Pie: The Origins and Usage of a Statistical Chart by Ian Spence. Lead image by PTAK.

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Pittsburgh hosting Prague Writers’ Festival

FILE – In this April 27, 2004 file photo, author E.L. Doctorow smiles during an interview in his office at New York University. The Prague Writers’ Festival opens in Pittsburgh on Friday, Oct. 18, 2013, the first time the event is being held in the United States. E.L. Doctorow, known for works including “Ragtime” and “Billy Bathgate, is slated to read excerpts of his new novel, “Andrew’s Brain,” at the festival. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

FILE – In this April 27, 2004 file photo, author E.L. Doctorow smiles during an interview in his office at New York University. The Prague Writers’ Festival opens in Pittsburgh on Friday, Oct. 18, 2013, the first time the event is being held in the United States. E.L. Doctorow, known for works including “Ragtime” and “Billy Bathgate, is slated to read excerpts of his new novel, “Andrew’s Brain,” at the festival. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

(AP) — The decision to hold the world-renowned Prague Writers’ Festival in western Pennsylvania isn’t as unlikely as it seems, considering the festival’s home base was once the capital of a nation born 95 years ago in a Loyal Order of Moose lodge in Pittsburgh.

The festival has given writers a platform to promote their works but, more importantly, to freely express the thoughts behind them. Friday and Saturday mark the first time the festival will be held in the United States — or anywhere outside Europe, for that matter — at Point Park University downtown.

“It’s a festival of ideas,” said Michael March, the festival’s founder — and often a platform for contentious or unpopular ones. Lawrence Ferlinghetti, a San Francisco writer who won a U.S. Supreme Court appeal of his arrest on obscenity charges in the 1950s, and Salman Rushdie, whose novel “The Satanic Verses” led to death threats from some who felt it attacked Islam, are past participants.

“Writers’ festivals are celebratory expressions of intellectual and artistic freedom,” said E.L. Doctorow, who will read excerpts of his new novel, “Andrew’s Brain,” at the festival.

Doctorow, known for works including “Ragtime” and “Billy Bathgate,” said festivals are important because in many countries, writers are “censored, jailed, exiled, attacked, murdered, because they know what governments know: that reality is amenable to any construction placed upon it.”

That the festival coincides with the anniversary of the birth of what was originally known as Czecho-Slovakia (the country later dropped the hyphen) only adds to that importance, said professor Channa Newman, director of global cultural studies at Point Park. She’s also the international program director for the festival and helped bring it to Pittsburgh.

The Czech Senate is sending a delegation, as is the Czech Chamber of Commerce, while the honorary consul representing Slovakia will also attend, Newman said.

“So there’s the historical ties, the cultural ties and the business ties, which is now apparently of interest,” Newman said.

March agreed that holding the festival in Pittsburgh underscores its international significance.

March, a poet, was raised in New York City. He moved to Europe after the Helsinki Accords attempted to thaw relations between then-Communist bloc nations and the West, and formed a smaller writers’ festival in late-1970s London.

March eventually established the Prague Writers’ Festival in May 1991, less than two years before Czechoslovakia peacefully split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The festival was first held in Wallenstein Palace, now home to the Czech Senate.

Celebrating Czecho-Slovakia’s birth brings the festival full circle.

The Pittsburgh Agreement, which announced the intention to form Czecho-Slovakia, grew out of a meeting in May 1918 of the Czecho-Slovak National Committee at the Moose lodge in downtown Pittsburgh, said University of Pittsburgh professor Martin Votruba. He leads what is believed to be the nation’s only university program offering a minor in Slovak Studies.

Czechs, Slovaks and some smaller ethnic groups foresaw the disintegration of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and hoped to determine their own future as a nation, instead of having it thrust upon them by the international community, Votruba said.

The resulting Pittsburgh Agreement was essentially a Czecho-Slovak declaration of independence, said Andrew Masich, director of Pittsburgh’s Senator John Heinz History Center. The museum, which is affiliated with the Smithsonian, has had a copy of the document since 2007.

The document’s author, T. G. Masaryk, declared the nation’s independence on Oct. 18, 1918, and became the new nation’s first president a month later, after the war.

“People forget, the first Czecho-Slovak flag either flew in Washington, D.C., or in Pittsburgh,” March said.

The Pittsburgh Agreement “wasn’t a perfect creation, it was an artificial creation during a terrible time of the first World War, a time of absolute devastation for people,” March said. But, he said, reflecting on that might help people “appreciate their own environment even more.”

Associated PressSource:’-Festival/id-123378a95f084169b43c68ad8f1d61a6
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Canadians detained in Egypt return to Toronto

TORONTO (Reuters) – Two Canadians held in Egypt for more than six weeks without charge arrived in Toronto on Friday to cheers, hugs and celebration, ending a high-profile campaign by friends and family to return the doctor and filmmaker.

John Greyson and Tarek Loubani were arrested after going to see street demonstrations on August 16, two days after security forces killed hundreds of supporters of toppled Islamist President Mohamed Mursi in Cairo.

Arriving at Toronto‘s Pearson Airport, the pair thanked Canadian authorities for working to secure their release and supporters who campaigned to raise awareness about their plight.

Egypt’s army-backed authorities released the pair on October 5, but they faced delays leaving the country due to a travel ban on the men, which was lifted on Thursday.

Greyson and Loubani said they were in Cairo before a planned trip to the Gaza Strip where Loubani was due to teach a medical course while Greyson made a documentary about him.

They were arrested at a checkpoint, then searched and beaten, they said. They were taken to Cairo’s Tora prison, where members of Mursi’s Muslim Brotherhood are being held.

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Kelton House Museum and Garden Announces … – Ohio Civil War 150


(Columbus, October 22, 2012) ? Philip Stichter will present Lincoln and Ohio: His Friends and Foes on Sunday, November 11, 2012, at 2:00 p.m. at the Kelton House Museum and Garden, 586 East Town Street, Columbus. Admission is $5/person. Call 614.464.2022 for reservations.

In Ohio, who were Lincoln?s friends, foes, and acquaintances? What were the issues during Lincoln?s presidency that caused Ohioans to support or oppose Lincoln? Which Ohioans were appointed by Lincoln to important public positions? In the presidential elections of 1860 and 1864, why did a majority of Columbus voters cast ballots for Lincon?s opponents? How did Lincoln-Douglas debates come to be published for the first time here in Columbus?

Join us to find out about Lincoln in the context of our state.

Parking is available in the Museum lot on Franklin Avenue

See for upcoming Civil War Sesquicentennial events.

General Informaton

The Kelton House Museum and Garden is located at 586 E. Town Street in downtown Columbus. Built in 1852 by Fernando Cortez and Sophia Stone Kelton, the House has been preserved with Kelton family treasures from the 1800?s. Strong Abolitionists, the Kelton family hid fugitive slaves and gave long term support to a particular African-American family. In 1975, when Grace Kelton, the granddaughter of Fernando and Sophia, died, her will entrusted the property to the Columbus Foundation with the stipulation that her family home be preserved and used as a museum of local history and the decorative arts. In 1976, The Junior League of Columbus took on the task of renovating and restoring the house and garden to create a museum of 19th-century life.

Today, the Kelton House Museum and Garden is a community service of the Junior League of Columbus that offers an ongoing program of house tours, special events and educational opportunities. An active volunteer program provides a training ground for individuals interested in historic preservation, the decorative arts, American History and museum management.

For more information about the Kelton House Museum and Garden log on to or contact Georgeanne Reuter,executive director, at 614. 464.2022 or


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Commercial Property, for Sale in Havelock, NC (None) $93000

? May 21, 2012Posted in: Uncategorized

In the Center of It All! Main Street in Havelock with tremendous visibility and high-traffic count. Mixed use lot has commercial zoning bordering Hwy 70 and residential/manufactured home zoning in the rear. Possibility of rezoning for single use. Own a small business with a home.

View FULL DETAILS and additional PHOTOS here:

New Bern Homes Presented by Donna ? 1915 Trent Boulevard, New Bern NC 28560 ? (252) 636-6595

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Stay true to your business ethics | Reputational Compliance


DO you have good business ethics? Would you take on a client whose business was ethically appalling? How far would you stretch the truth to help a client sell their products or services? How far would you go in your promises to win a client?

Each of the above are ethical questions graphic/web designers struggle with daily. Since ethics should be an important factor in all business decisions, I thought it would be interesting to mull over this topic. But really, how much do ethics affect a design practice? Or perhaps I should ask: ?Are you operating with any ethics at all??

Truly, ethics is flat out black and white: Either you are ethical or you are not. We can?t say: ?I only murdered him a little? or ?I am half way pregnant?. I?m sure you?d agree that it is ethically wrong to take another human being?s life. Perhaps, on the rarest of occasions, we might see it as acceptable if it is done in self-defense. But what about stealing? Is it wrong to steal a loaf of bread to feed a starving child? It may now be logical to say that situations arise that often conflict with our ethics.

Ethics are not easy. I believe reasoning should be used for each situation to determine what takes precedence. Sometimes I feel that ethical norms are so ubiquitous that I am tempted to regard them as simple common sense. But, in the most basic terms, business ethics boils down to knowing the difference between right and wrong, and choosing to do what is right.

As human beings, we seem prone to failing personal ethics tests, which may be the only luxury some people are choosing to live without. Many people believe that embracing ethics would limit their options, opportunities and their very ability to succeed in business. For instance, is there much time to worry about world hunger when you are building a business? That?s not to say entrepreneurs cannot be socially minded on a lesser scale.

However, despite ethics being a subjective issue for most professions, the line is very thin for designers, as they face ethical dilemmas as well. Earlier, I discussed with a friend about how ethics are often malleable, and how decisions made are most often based on the current situation.

For example, if you are anti -smoking, would you take on Marlboro as a design client? Lee Newham, a branding expert, gave this answer: ?If I was financially secure, and if I felt strongly about it, no I would not, but if I needed the money, I would think about it but within reason.? Do you think the design of a cigarette pack can really encourage people to smoke, or that it encourages long-time, veteran smokers to buy different cigarette brands?

There is a deeper confusion, as I can?t help but believe that ethics is never a business, social or political issue. It is always persona,l like pressure, pride, priority and power. Unfortunately for many people, having power is like drinking salt water. The more they drink, the thirstier they become.

But let?s not lose the flame. Consider these questions: When ethics and responsibilities conflict, how do you make a choice? Do ethics become easier when we?ve put in time thinking about them before we?re confronted with having to choose?

I recall my design ethics being challenged once while helping a company out. We actually built up a great relationship, but this happened when I was asked to do a job that contained an advert for an ?adult? store, which I did not wish to be associated with. Thus, I politely told them that I would be unable to comply, followed by a specified reason.

They respected my frankness, and said it was not a problem. They still wanted to continue working with me. The lesson here is that the easy road is not always the right one, and I was happy I did not compromise my integrity. But realise that designing is a delicate career, and sometimes freelancers are thrown into compromising situations.

I suppose I would turn down anything that may inhibit the growth of mankind or breakdown a community. I recall chatting with a colleague last week, who said he declined to design a church website because it wasn?t promoting or sharing the same doctrine as his church beliefs. Again, where should the line be drawn? I think this is a very important question, as obviously there are personal factors to consider. Here are a few ethical considerations designers should consider, especially when communicating with clients.

* Taking advantage of Clients: Any Designer who has been in business long enough has dealt with nightmare clients. The ones that are never satisfied or can never make up their minds. However, there are a few who are not aggressive and never complain, and we call them ?dream clients?.

The downside is that this can also make it very tempting for unethical designers to take advantage of their goodwill. Nevertheless, designers should always honour whatever was agreed upon in their contract. And if for some reason the agreement cannot be met, then it is only ethical to refer the client to another designer.

Overcharging: Most clients have no idea what goes into a design project, so they do not know whether designers spent an hour or 10 hours on it. This could make it easy for clients to be over-charged more than the usual hourly rate. Hence, clients that receive a bill that?s 20 per cent higher than expected are not going to be very happy.

Disclosure of Terms: It is important that designers disclose all terms in a contract. This means everything from payments and incurring extra charges, to who owns the rights to work created.

Ownership of Source Files: This is probably one of the murkiest areas of design ethics. Should you turn over the source files to your clients when you have completed a project? While designers may have made it clear that the client owns the designs, what about their files? After all, most clients don?t need (and won?t have any idea what to do with) their PSD files anyway.

The ethical thing to do after receiving full payment is to deliver all files to the client, unless it was spelt-out otherwise in a contract. This is credible, as the client may decide to have another designer update their design in the future.

Copying another?s Design: This is a hot button topic. A client produces some examples of sites they wish to copy and, after one or two rounds of revisions, the designer realises they actually wanted the identical to their competitor.

There are two kinds of clients who makes this request: The clueless one, who is having a difficult time understanding why it is wrong to use someone else?s design, and the breed that understands it is blatantly wrong, but still demands it anyway. Agreed, it is fine to use some elements from another?s site, but duplicating an entire site is a no, no.

The truth is that doing the right thing often leads to the greatest financial, social and personal rewards. This should encourage designers to speak out if something opposes their principles. Being a conduit for integrity, I believe that ?it?s better to light a candle and let integrity rule?. By all accounts, people who continually attempt to test the edge of ethics are inevitably destined to one day fall over it. Until we meet again, fill your life with memories rather than regrets. Have fun and stay on top of your game!



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Stocks slip, adding prior day?s drop

By news services

U.S. stocks slipped Friday after equities suffered their worst percentage drop in two weeks, with the S&P 500 on track for its first decline in the past six weeks.

The S&P lost 0.7 percent on Thursday, its biggest percentage drop since March 6. The benchmark index is still near four-year highs.

The benchmark S&P is down 0.8 percent for the week, and many investors were waiting for a further pullback as the index has risen 10.8 percent for the year and 26.7 percent from its October low.

Indexes could get a boost next week from quarter-end “window dressing” as fund managers drop poor performing stocks and chase better-performing ones.

Factory data showing a slowdown in both the euro zone and China sent the S&P 500 lower on Thursday to its first close closed below 1,400 in six sessions.

“Today investors are basically going to focus on the domestic economy, so new home sales could re-energize the upward trend,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global Capital in New York.

Zynga Inc dipped 1.9 percent to $13.50 in premarket trade after the online games maker said shareholders will sell about 43 million shares in a secondary offering.

Nike Inc was flat at $111 in premarket after the sportswear retailer forecast a strong year and said it was heading into the spring quarter with strong demand and improving margin trends.

Jobs search website Monster Worldwide Inc is open to selling all or part of itself and expects to have data ready for potential buyers fairly soon, Chief Executive Sal Iannuzzi said in an interview. Shares gained 1.8 percent to $9.66 premarket.

Darden Restaurants Inc posted higher third-quarter profit, boosted by increased sales at its Olive Garden chain.

European equities retreated further after four straight sessions of declines, stalked by concerns over the global growth outlook.

Asian shares fell after data showing shrinking factory activity in China and the euro zone heightened concerns about a slowdown in the global economy.

Reuters contributed to this report.


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