Australian Olympic medallist on drugs possession charge

Written by admin on 07/30/2019 Categories: 佛山桑拿网

Huegill, who won a medley relay silver and a 100 metres butterfly bronze for Australia at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, was charged with his wife on Saturday and will appear at a Sydney court next month.


“Police were patrolling Randwick racecourse as part of their general duties when they were directed to a suite in the grandstand by security personnel,” a police spokeswoman said.

“Police spoke to a 35-year-old old man and his 30-year-old wife, who were alleged to be in possession of a small quantity of white powder, believed to be cocaine.”

Huegill posted links on his Twitter account on Saturday to pictures of himself and his wife beaming in a room at the race meeting while drinking champagne.

“Enjoying the day with @mshuegill in the Moët suites at Randwick today,” a caption read.

Huegill’s lawyer Paul Hunt confirmed the couple were issued with a court notice.

“As the matter is not yet resolved, my clients do not intend to make any further comment at this point in time,” he said in a statement.

A former 50m butterfly world record holder, Huegill retired from the pool after the 2004 Athens Olympics and battled depression, weight and alcohol problems before making a highly publicised comeback in 2008.

He won golds at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and took a world championship bronze in Shanghai the following year before quitting the pool again after failing to qualify for the 2012 London Games.

Huegill’s drugs charge follows problems with fellow former Australian swimmers in Ian Thorpe and Grant Hackett in recent months.

Five-time Olympic champion Thorpe was checked into a health clinic in February to treat depression after he was found disoriented and behaving oddly near a parked car in a Sydney suburb.

Triple Olympic champion Hackett flew to the United States later the same month to seek treatment for an addiction to a sleeping medication after he was photographed shirtless in the lobby of a Melbourne casino.

(Writing by Ian Ransom; Editing by Greg Stutchbury)

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Boko Haram – the terror group that kidnapped 200 schoolgirls

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By Mathieu Guidère, University of Toulouse

As terrorist attacks go, it was as shocking for its scale and its choice of target: on April 14, at least 200 people were kidnapped from the Government Girls Secondary School in the Nigerian town of Chibok.


More than a week later, the whereabouts of hundreds of young women remain a mystery. Within local communities of Borno province there is much sympathy for parents, but not a huge degree of shock. For this is just the latest in a series of attacks blamed on one outfit: Boko Haram.

To understand the kidnapping, we have to look at the terror group’s history, how it was formed, and how its ideology developed.

Boko Haram has made itself notorious with a long campaign of bombings and mass murders across Nigeria, often in concert with other Islamist groups. But to properly understand the group, we have to look at the terrorist group’s history, how the group was formed, and how its ideology developed.

In the aftermath of September 11 2001, a 30-year-old man called Muhammad Yusuf founded a new religious preaching group in Maiduguri, capital of Nigeria’s Borno State, and gave it the Arabic name “Jamaat ahl as-Sunnah li ad-Dawah wa al-Jihad” (literally, “The Group of the People of Tradition and Call for Jihad”). This group would later become known in Hausa as “Boko Haram”, meaning “Western education is sinful”.

Yusuf had studied theology in Saudi Arabia and converted to Salafism. He was convinced that the Western education model which prevailed in Nigeria, a legacy of British rule, was to blame for the country’s problems; he pledged to fight against it, and to introduce a model inspired by the Taliban’s Afghan education system.

The group began as a gathering of Muslim followers at a mosque and at a Koranic school. These gatherings were for poor families to send their children to study a different but parallel curriculum to the existing one: they were taught Islamic sciences, prophetic traditions, Koranic commentary, rejection of Darwinian evolution and the like. The number of these “schools” increased, attracting young adult students who failed in the government universities. They then began calling themselves “the Nigerian Taliban” (Taliban literally means “student of theology”).


Boko Haram leader Muhammad Yusuf. TRAC, CC BY


The core principles of the group were an emphasis on “Hakimiyyah” (sovereignty to God’s law); a belief that they are the “Saved Sect”, as mentioned in the prophetic tradition of Islam; a contorted interpretation of the edicts of scholars from the classical tradition; and the prohibition of study in Western educational centres or work in any government institution.

The group quickly became politicised and displayed their hostility to the regime of the late president, Umaru Yar’Adua. On December 31 2003, violence broke out in Damaturu, capital of Yobe State, and Boko Haram took control of a number of areas bordering Niger. From 2004 to 2006, violent clashes often erupted between the Boko Haram militants and the security forces, who tried to prevent the group from taking over various schools and public buildings. In 2006, Muhammad Yusuf declared the application of shariah as the main objective of Boko Haram. He was also arrested several times for “illegal gatherings” and “disturbing of public order”, though he never faced any harsh consequences in court.

But Boko Haram’s real turning point came in 2009.

The jihadi turn

In July of that year, a new round of violence began after the group simultaneously attacked four northern states of Nigeria: Bauchi, Borno, Yobe and Kano. The fighting between Boko Haram and government troops lasted for five days in Maiduguri (the Borno State capital), with president Umaru Yar’Adua determined to eradicate the fundamentalist movement. On July 30, security forces successfully expelled Boko Haram from Maiduguri; Yusuf was captured, and then executed in Maiduguri under mysterious circumstances.

Over the next year, the group was reorganised. It forged contacts with major jihadist groups in Africa, particularly with AQIM (Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb) in the north and with the Somali al-Shabaab in the East. Several leaders and commanders left Nigeria and joined the ranks of AQIM or al-Shabaab to train in insurgency tactics and gain experience in terrorism. In July 2010, one of these leaders, Abubakar Shekau, recorded a video message proclaiming himself leader of Boko Haram, and calling for jihad against the politicians, the police, and especially Christians.

Shekhau returned to Nigeria, and in September 2010 launched a spectacular attack, storming a Bauchi prison and freeing hundreds of detained Boko Haram members. Over Christmas 2010, Boko Haram waged a campaign of murderous attacks against Christians. One attack in Jos claimed 80 victims alone.

Despite new president Goodluck Jonathan’s willingness to negotiate, Boko Haram continued its armed actions. It claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing against the United Nations office in Abuja on August 26 2011 and the attack at the Christian area of Damaturu that left 130 dead on November 4 2011. Finally, on December 25 2011, the group claimed the attack on a church in Madalla, on the outskirts of Abuja, which killed 27.

Splinters and new connections

But 2012 was marked by a major split in Boko Haram. In January, the splinter group “Vanguard for the Protection of Muslims in Black Lands”, better known as “Ansaru”, was formed. The group’s motto is “Jihad Fi Sabil Allah”: “Struggle in the Path of Allah.” In his first statement, Ansaru’s leader Abu Usmatu al-Ansari described Boko Haram as “inhuman to the Muslim Ummah [nation]”. In another video, the group claimed they would not kill innocent non-Muslims or security officials except in “self defence”, and that they would defend the interests of Islam and Muslims not just in Nigeria, but also in the whole of Africa.

Unlike Boko Haram, which is based in Borno State in northeastern Nigeria, Ansaru operates in and around Kano State in northern-central Nigeria, coordinating with the northern Mali-based AQIM and the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO). It carried out a January 2013 attack on a convoy of Nigerian troops on their way to fight jihadist groups in Northern Mali, and on May 23 2013, it took part in an attack on a French-owned uranium mine in Niger.

Ansaru has also specialised in kidnappings for ransom, with the May 2012 abduction of a Briton and an Italian from Kebbi State, the December 2012 kidnapping of French engineer Francis Collomp in Katsina State and the February 2013 kidnapping of seven foreigners from a construction site in Bauchi State. Leader al-Ansari proclaimed the execution of the May 2012 and February 2013 hostages after a failed rescue attempt by British and Nigerian special forces.

Takfiri terror

While Ansaru was trying to regionalise and internationalise its fight, Boko Haram continued its terror in Nigeria. On May 14 2013, this led Goodluck Jonathan to proclaim a state of emergency in three northeastern states. Despite this, Boko Haram has not forgotten its priority: attacking “sinful education.”

A series of school massacres saw slews of students and teachers killed in the summer of 2013; other massacres were perpetrated throughout the autumn in hopes of starting a civil war. Faced with these massive killings, the army responded with heavy actions against Boko Haram camps.

This caused numerous civilian casualties, and turned local populations against the security forces. By the end of 2013, massacres perpetrated by the army had helped to bring together the splinter groups, leading the more radical leaders of Ansaru to return to the bosom of Boko Haram. The cycle of violence was reinforced.

Since then, the group has moved to the Takfiri ideology, declaring other Muslims as well as Christians as infidels and unbelievers and allowing their murder without any discrimination whatsoever.

Northern Nigeria continues to see an explosion of massacres, a series of attacks that have killed hundreds and show no sign of abating – culminating in the April 14 abduction of hundreds of schoolgirls. Boko Haram’s campaign of murder and violence shows no sign of abating.

Mathieu Guidère does not work for, consult to, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has no relevant affiliations.

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Vic govt says helping mine fire clean-up

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The clean-up in a Victorian town covered in ash by a coal mine fire continues, the state government says.


But Environment Victoria claims clean-up efforts after the 45-day Hazelwood coal mine fire have stalled, staging a protest with some Morwell residents outside a coal industry conference in Melbourne on Monday.

The group’s acting chief executive officer Mark Wakeham says Morwell families are still suffering from the impacts of the fire while the government will announce at the conference $90 million in grants for new Latrobe Valley coal projects.

“It’s insulting to those suffering in Morwell that the government is this week showing polluters around the very sites that caused the disaster in the first place,” he said.

A spokesperson for Energy and Resources Minister Russell Northe said the government put in place a range of measures to help Morwell residents during and after the fire.

More than 540 residents’ homes have been cleaned and progress continues, the spokesperson said in a statement.

The statement also said the government is committed to investing in the Latrobe Valley’s economic prosperity and future jobs growth, which is why it hosted the third International Low Rank Coal Industry Symposium.

The conference heard the CSIRO and its industry partners will trial direct injection carbon engine technology in the Latrobe Valley, with the aim of reducing emissions from brown coal-generated electricity by 50 per cent compared to current technology.

Former Supreme Court justice Bernard Teague is heading an inquiry into the Hazelwood fire, which began on February 9 when two bushfires spread into the brown coal mine and blanketed Morwell in acrid smoke.

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Takeover move for Goodman Fielder not over

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By Trevor Chappell

MELBOURNE, April 28 AAP – Two Asian companies seeking control of food producer Goodman Fielder will pursue their bid for the company despite its rejection of their $1.


27 billion takeover offer.

Goodman Fielder, whose brands include Alga’s, McDowell, Foetal’s, Meadow Fresh and Olive Grove, said the offer from Singapore-based agribusiness Lamer International and Hong Kong investment firm First Pacific Company was too low.

The offer of 65 cents for each share, which was made over the weekend, was opportunistic and materially undervalued the company, Goodman Fielder said.

Goodman Fielder shares jumped to close 8.5 cents, or 15.45 per cent higher at 63.5 cents in the wake of the takeover proposal.

First Pacific and Lamer, which already holds a 10.1 per cent stake in Goodman Fielder, have urged the Goodman Fielder board to allow them to inspect the company’s financial records.

“First Pacific and Lamer … will continue to seek engagement with the board about entering into due diligence aimed at bringing forward a binding proposal to Goodman Fielder shareholders,” the two companies said in a joint statement on Monday.

Lamer already owns Australian assets, after buying CSR’s sugar business, now known as Escorting, in 2010.

In February 2012, Lamer increased its stake in Goodman Fielder from under five per cent to more than 10 per cent, sparking speculation that Lamer was about to make a takeover bid for Goodman Fielder.

Morningstar analyst Peter Rae said Lamer may be looking to expand its activities in the region to include food manufacturing.

“It’s a bit difficult to see how it (Goodman Fielder) fits, because they (Lamer) are predominantly into (edible) oil and sugar refining,” Mr Rae said.

“Possibly they’re looking to use their ownership of oil assets to flow through to some of Goodman Fielder’s manufacturing activities.”

Mr Rae said the offer price for Goodman Fielder seemed reasonable, and Lamer was unlikely to offer much more.

He said Goodman Fielder was in a difficult business because the supermarkets were always squeezing the company on the price of its products, input costs were volatile and margins were constantly under pressure.

Lamer and First Pacific said their takeover offer was compelling.

The offer comes at a premium of 27 per cent to the average price of Goodman Fielder shares since the food maker’s profit downgrade on April 2, the suitors said.

Goodman Fielder said at the time that it expected annual normalised earnings to be down by 10 to 15 per cent on the market’s forecast of $180 million.

It also announced it was bringing forward its plans for 300 job cuts aimed at reducing costs.

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E-cigarette use triples in 2 years

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Use of electronic cigarettes has tripled over the past two years, with more than two million adults now regularly smoking them, a survey has revealed.


Figures released by health charity ASH show that the number of adults in Britain using the devices has risen from an estimated 700,000 in 2012 to 2.1 million this year.

Nearly two-thirds of users said they also smoked regular cigarettes, with the other third being ex-smokers, an increase in the proportion of former smokers compared to previous years.

Just 1 per cent of those asked who never smoked said they had tried electronic cigarettes.

The YouGov survey found that more than half of ex-smokers (51.7 per cent) say that they have tried electronic cigarettes, compared with just 8.2 per cent in 2010.

It showed there has been a consistent rise in the number of current or former smokers who use electronic cigarettes on a regular basis – up from 2.7 per cent in 2010 to 17.7 per cent this year.

Just over a third (35 per cent) of British adults believe that electronic cigarettes are good for public health while just under a quarter (22 per cent) disagree, the survey said.

The main reason given by ex-smokers for using electronic cigarettes were “to help me stop smoking entirely” (71 per cent) and “to help me keep off tobacco” (48 per cent).

And the biggest reason for current smokers was to “help me reduce the amount of tobacco I smoke, but not stop completely” (48 per cent) followed by “to save money compared with smoking tobacco” (37 per cent) and “to help me stop smoking entirely” (36 per cent).

For the first time, the Ash YouGov survey also asked about the type of electronic cigarette commonly used, with just under half (47 per cent) using rechargeable e-cigarettes with pre-filled cartridges and 41 per cent using rechargeable devices with a separate tank. Just 8 per cent said they most often use disposable e-cigarettes.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of Ash said: “The dramatic rise in use of electronic cigarettes over the past four years suggests that smokers are increasingly turning to these devices to help them cut down or quit smoking. Significantly, usage among non-smokers remains negligible.

“While it is important to control the advertising of electronic cigarettes to make sure children and non-smokers are not being targeted, there is no evidence from our research that e-cigarettes are acting as a gateway into smoking.”

The YouGov survey questioned 12,269 adults online last month.

A separate ongoing survey – the Smoking Toolkit Study carried out in England – has also found that smokers are increasingly using electronic cigarettes as an aid to quitting, overtaking use of medicinal nicotine products such as patches and gum.

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Ocean floor search for MH370 to be expanded

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(Transcript from World News Radio)

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has announced the air search for missing Malaysia Airlines plane MH370 is over, but the search will continue over a larger area underwater.


Mr Abbott says 52 days after the plane disappeared with 239 people on board, the search is now entering a new phase focused on searching the Indian Ocean floor.

Santilla Chingaipe reports.

(Click on audio tab to listen to this item)

The un-manned Bluefin-21 underwater vehicle that’s been involved in the search for wreckage of the plane in the Indian Ocean will continue to be used.

But an intensified search of the ocean floor will involve using different technology in the deep water where the search is focused.

Tony Abbott says no-one should underestimate the degree of responsibility that Australia feels because the crash appears to have happened in its search and rescue zone.

He says Australia, in consultation with Malaysia, will engage one or more commercial companies to undertake the work, at an expected cost of about $60 million.

“We will continue to work closely with Malaysia and with China in taking this operation forward. It could take us some weeks to put in place these new contractual arrangements for an intensified under sea search. During this period, there will be a dedicated team of vessels from Australia, Malaysia and China that will continue maritime operations to maintain continuity and momentum.”

Mr Abbott has defended his announcement during a recent trip to China that searchers were within a few kilometres of finding the Malaysian plane.

He admits the plane’s probable crash zone is now considered to be roughly 700 km by 80 km.

Mr Abbott says he’s not in the business of making excuses for failure but rather doing everything possible not to let the world down.

“The point I have been making all along is that we owe it to the families of all on board, we owe it to the wider travelling public to do everything we reasonably can to get to the bottom of this mystery and I want the families to know, I want the world to know, that Australia will not shirk its responsibilities in this area. We will do everything we humanly can, everything we reasonably can, to solve this mystery. We will not let people down.”

The aerial search for wreckage from the missing plane has involved more than 330 flights over more than seven weeks.

More than 4.5 million square kilometres of ocean has been searched by military and civilian planes from Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, South Korea and Malaysia.

Fourteen ships from Australia, China and Britain have also been looking for wreckage on the ocean surface.

But it’s now considered highly unlikely that any aircraft debris will be found on the ocean’s surface, because any would have become waterlogged and sunk.

The head of the search in the Indian Ocean, former Australian defence chief Angus Houston, says the expanded underwater search will probably take many months.

He says experience with the Bluefin underwater vehicle indicates that things won’t all go smoothly.

“If everything goes perfectly, I would say we will be doing well if we do it in eight months. But then you have issues, potential issues, with weather, potential issues with unservicibility of equipment. Witness what’s happened with our Bluefin. There have been a number of teething problems with it. Eventually it has done the job in a little bit more time than we had anticipated initially.”

A team of experts in Kuala Lumpur will be asked to reconsider the likely impact zone based on the information gleaned from the search over the past few weeks.

But Angus Houston says he’s confident the search has been focused on the right area.


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Facebook’s new secret sauce

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We all know by now that Facebook isn’t cool.


And yet somehow it’s more popular than ever. This week the company announced that its growth continues to surge – not only in terms of the sheer number of Facebook users, but in terms of how much they use the site. On any given day, Mark Zuckerberg said, 63 per cent of Facebook’s 1.28 billion users log into the site. And the proportion of users who log in at least six days a week has now surpassed 50 per cent.

How is it possible that Facebook keeps getting more addictive over time, rather than less?

It’s possible because Facebook knows what you like – and it’s getting better at understanding you all the time.

As much work and data – your data – as Facebook feeds into its targeted advertising, it works at least as hard at figuring out which of your friends’ posts you’re most likely to want to see each time you open the app. Advertisers may butter Facebook’s bread, but its most pressing interest of all is in keeping its users coming back for more. If it ever fails at that, its advertising business will implode.

So how does Facebook know what we like? On a recent visit to the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park, I talked about that with Will Cathcart, who oversees the product management teams that work on the company’s news feed. The answer holds lessons for the future of machine learning, the media and the internet at large.

Facebook launched the news feed in 2006, but it didn’t introduce the “like” button until a year later. Only then did the site have a way to figure out which posts you were actually interested in – and which new posts you might be interested in, based on what your friends and others were liking. In the years since its launch, the news feed has gone from being a simple chronological list to a machine learning product, with posts ranked in your timeline according to the likelihood that you would find them interesting. The goal is to ensure that, for example, the first picture of your best friend’s new baby would take precedence over a remote acquaintance’s most recent Mafia Wars score.

For a while, Facebook likes – coupled with a few other metrics, such as shares, comments, and clicks – served as a pretty decent proxy for engagement. But they were far from perfect, Cathcart concedes. A funny photo meme might get thousands of quick likes, while a thoughtful news story analysing the conflict in Ukraine would be punished by Facebook’s algorithms because it didn’t lend itself to a simple thumbs-up. The result was that people’s news feeds became littered with the social media equivalent of junk food. Facebook had become optimised for stories that people Facebook-liked, rather than stories that people actually liked.

Worse, many of the same stories that thousands of people Facebook-liked turned out to be ones that thousands of other people genuinely hated. They included posts that had clicky headlines designed to score cheap likes and clicks, but that actually led to pages filled with spammy ads rather than the content that the headline promised. But in the absence of a “dislike” button, Facebook’s algorithms had no way of knowing which posts were turning users off. Eventually, about a year ago, Facebook acknowledged that it had a “quality content” problem.

Each time you log in, Facebook’s algorithms choose from about 1,500 possible posts to place at the top of your News Feed.

This is not a problem specific to Facebook. It’s a problem that confronts every company or product that harnesses data analytics to drive decision-making. So how do you solve it? For some, the answer might be to temper data-driven insights with a healthy dose of human intuition. But Facebook’s news feed operates on a scale and a level of personalisation that makes direct human intervention infeasible. So for Facebook, the answer was to begin collecting new forms of data designed to generate insights that the old forms of data – likes, shares, comments, and clicks – couldn’t.

Three sources of data in particular are helping Facebook to refashion its news feed algorithms to show users the kinds of posts that will keep them coming back: surveys, A/B tests, and data on the time users spend away from Facebook once they click on a given post – and what they do when they come back.

Surveys can get at questions that other metrics can’t, while A/B tests offer Facebook a way to put its hunches under a microscope. Every time its developers make a tweak to the algorithms, Facebook tests it by showing it to a small percentage of users. At any given moment, Cathcart says, there might be 1000 different versions of Facebook running for different groups of users. Facebook is gathering data on all of them, to see which changes are generating positive reactions and which ones are falling flat.

For instance, Facebook recently tested a series of changes designed to correct for the proliferation of “like-bait” – stories or posts that explicitly ask users to hit the “like” button in order to boost their ranking in your news feed. Some in the media worried that Facebook was making unjustified assumptions about its users’ preferences. In fact, Facebook had already tested the changes on a small group of users before it publicly announced them. “We actually very quickly saw that the people we launched that improvement to were clicking on more articles in their news feed,” Cathcart explains.

When users click on a link in their news feed, Cathcart says, Facebook looks very carefully at what happens next. “If you’re someone who, every time you see an article from The New York Times, you not only click on it, but go offsite and stay offsite for a while before you come back, we can probably infer that you in particular find articles from The New York Times more relevant” – even if you don’t actually hit “like” on them.

At the same time, Facebook has begun more carefully differentiating between the likes that a post gets before users click on it and the ones it gets after they’ve clicked. A lot of people might be quick to hit the like button on a post based solely on a headline or teaser that panders to their political sensibilities. But if very few of them go on to like or share the article after they’ve read it, that might indicate to Facebook that the story didn’t deliver.

Some have speculated that Facebook’s news feed changes were specifically targeting certain sites for demotion while elevating the ranking of others. That’s not the case, Cathcart insists. Facebook defines high-quality content not by any objective ranking system, but according to the tastes of its users. If you love Upworthy and find the Times snooze-worthy, then Facebook’s goal is to show you more of the former and less of the latter.

Each time you log in to Facebook, the site’s algorithms have to choose from among an average of 1500 possible posts to place at the top of your news feed. “The perfect test for us,” Cathcart says, “would be if we sat you down and gave you all 1500 stories and asked you to rearrange them from 1 to 1500 in the order of what was most relevant for you. That would be the gold standard.” But that’s a little too much testing, even for Facebook.

For a lot of people, the knowledge that Facebook’s computers are deciding what stories to show them – and which ones to hide – remains galling. Avid Twitter users swear by that platform’s more straightforward chronological timeline, which relies on users to carefully curate their own list of people to follow. But there’s a reason that Facebook’s engagement metrics keep growing while Twitter’s are stagnant. As much as we’d like to think we could do a better job than the algorithms, the fact is most of us don’t have time to sift through 1500 posts on a daily basis. And so, even as we resent Facebook’s paternalism, we keep coming back to it.

And just maybe, if Facebook keeps getting better at figuring out what we actually like as opposed to what we just Facebook-like, we’ll start to actually like Facebook itself a little more than we do today.

Will Oremus is Slate’s senior technology writer.

Slate ©

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Other Woman takes out Spider-Man

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The Other Woman has taken her revenge and snatched the top spot at the Australian box office from Spider-Man over the Anzac Day long weekend.


The Other Woman and The Amazing Spider-Man 2: Rise of Electro switched places from last weekend, with the comic book adaptation falling into second place, while the Cameron Diaz and Leslie Mann comedy climbed a spot to take no. 1.

According to the Motion Picture Distributors Association of Australia, The Other Woman pulled in $4.345 million from Thursday to Sunday, which was more than $300,000 better than its debut weekend.

Animated flick The Lego Movie remained steady in third place, while Wes Anderson’s latest film The Grand Budapest Hotel moved up a spot to no. 4.

Johnny Depp’s new thrilled Transcendence made its debut in fifth, as another comic book movie, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, fell two places to take sixth.

For the second weekend in a row, the top seven films on the Aussie box office all took above the one million dollar mark, with no. 7 film, the YA novel adaptation Divergent, down one spot from last weekend, but still earning $1.257 million.

Also dropping one place was animated movie Mr Peabody & Sherman, now in eighth, the Muppets sequel, Muppets Most Wanted, which dropped to ninth and Noah, starring Russell Crowe, finishing off the ladder in tenth.


1. The Other Woman – $4.345 million (Fox)

2. The Amazing Spider-Man 2: Rise of Electro – $3.285 million (Sony)

3. The Lego Movie – $2.692 million (Roadshow)

4. The Grand Budapest Hotel – $1.611 million (Fox)

5. Transcendence – $1.377 million (Roadshow)

6. Captain America: The Winter Soldier – $1.326 million (Walt Disney)

7. Divergent – $1.257 million (Entertainment One)

8. Mr Peabody & Sherman – $970,529 (Fox)

9. Muppets Most Wanted – $645,609 (Disney)

10. Noah – $310,556 (Paramount)

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Spartacus star finally finds work in Oz

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McIntyre was plucked from relative obscurity when he landed the lead role in the TV series Spartacus which was made in New Zealand for US cable channel Starz.


Until then he had a resume that was light in detail and, even he admits, slightly misleading.

His list of credits before appearing in Spartacus included a few short films, a guest role on Neighbours, a few episodes on police drama Rush and a part in the-Steven Spielberg produced mini-series The Pacific.

However, McIntyre’s not even sure if he even appears in The Pacific, so he was surprised when he landed the role in Spartacus which has kicked off his career.

“I had a day on Neighbours, just so I can say I have been on Neighbours and a day on The Pacific which was cut but is still on my bio,” McIntyre joked.

“They say I’m in it (The Pacific) but I’m not sure where…when they read my name out for Spartacus I thought they got it wrong.”

Now he has established himself as a lead actor, doors have been flung open for him at home and led to him returning home for The Killing Field.

He landed the role after being asked to audition by The Killing Field’s lead actress Rebecca Gibney who is also co-producer on the Seven Network feature.

“Now I have done that (Spartacus) and come back it’s a whole new world and I am getting opportunities I would not have got before I did this,” he said.

“It absolutely is my first (major) Australian production…which is the reverse way to do things for sure.

“You can’t say no when Rebecca Gibney asks you to audition…it was a compliment.”

Before shooting The Killing Field, McIntyre played another scantily clad character, Sotiris, in the upcoming movie The Legend Of Hercules.

The Legend of Hercules was released in January and starred Kellan Lutz as Hercules/Alcides and Gaia Weiss as Hebe.

“It’s good to get back into pants again and play something in the present,” McIntyre quipped.

The Killing Field starts with a girl who goes missing in a country town and in the search to find her, five bodies are discovered in a field.

McIntyre plays detective Dan Wild. The telemovie also stars Peter O’Brien, who plays detective inspector Lachlan Mckenzie and Gibney as detective sergeant Eve Winter.

McIntyre said the production is worthy of being on a cable TV channel.

“It’s a HBO style quality production,” McIntyre said.

Gibney started working on The Killing Field soon after family drama Packed To The Rafters, in which she played Julie Rafter for six seasons, ceased production.

There’s reason to believe that if the telemovie is a success, it could spawn a TV series.

* The Killing Field starts on Sunday, May 4 on the Seven Network

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Microsoft grapples with Internet Explorer

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Microsoft is scrambling to repair a security hole in its widely used Internet Explorer web browser, saying it had detected attempts to exploit the flaw.


The US software giant says the coding problem affected versions six through 11 of its flagship browser, noting it was aware of “limited, targeted attacks” taking advantage of the newly discovered flaw.

Microsoft says that an attacker who successfully exploits the vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the official user.

“The vulnerability may corrupt memory in a way that could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code in the context of the current user within Internet Explorer,” Microsoft said on its security website on Saturday.

“An attacker could host a specially crafted website that is designed to exploit this vulnerability through Internet Explorer and then convince a user to view the website.”

Cybersecurity firm FireEye, which took credit for identifying the flaw, said hackers were exploiting the bug in a campaign nicknamed “Operation Clandestine Fox.”

Users still relying on Windows XP could be especially vulnerable because Microsoft stopped early this month supporting the older operating system with security patches and other software updates.

Earlier this month, the “Heartbleed” flaw in Internet security saw everyone from website operators and bank officials to casual Internet surfers and governments being told their data could be in danger.

Heartbleed allowed hackers to snatch packets of data from working memory in computers, creating the potential for them to steal passwords, encryption keys, or other valuable information.

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