Dropbox acquires visual collaboration platform Pixelapse

Pixelapse Dropbox
Dropbox has acquired visual version control and collaboration platform Pixelapse today for an undisclosed sum. Pixelapse will work towards integrating its service into Dropbox over the next year. Pixelapse gives users version control over their graphics projects, and works across Windows and Mac on over 50 file formats covering apps like Adobe’s Photoshop and Illustrator, as well as Graffle and Sketch. It also lets teams collaborate on files by offering annotation and visual comparison tools. Pixelapse says it will continue to work as a standalone product for existing users over this year and also accept new users. Once its service…

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Sharapova sets up Russian semi at Australian Open

Maria Sharapova during her Australian Open match against Eugenie Bouchard in Melbourne on January 27, 2015

Melbourne (AFP) – The experienced Maria Sharapova slapped down young pretender Eugenie Bouchard Tuesday, dominating the ambitious Canadian to set up an all-Russian Australian Open semi-final with dark horse Ekaterina Makarova.

The world number two, who could claim the top ranking from arch-rival Serena Williams if she wins the title, showed her intent by breaking the seventh seed in the first game of the match and never looked back.

Billed as a Glam Slam showdown between two of the game’s most marketable women, an intense Sharapova was all business in the crushing 6-3, 6-2 win on a cool, overcast Melbourne day.

“She’s been playing so well at Slams, so confident and so aggressive,” said the Russian, gunning for a sixth Grand Slam crown and her first in Australia since 2008.

“I just really tried to take that away from her a little bit. I did a great job of that today.” 

She now faces Makarova, who raced through her match against third seed Simona Halep, thrashing the more-fancied Romanian 6-4, 6-0.

The 26-year-old has made the quarter-finals at Melbourne Park twice previously but never before advanced to the semis in seven attempts.

“I love it, it’s a great feeling that I came through,” said Makarova.

In the other women’s quarter-finals, to be played Wednesday, top seed Serena Williams meets last year’s finalist Dominika Cibulkova while her sister Venus takes on teenage American Madison Keys.

If the Williams sisters both win, they will face each other across the net at a Grand Slam for the first time since the 2009 Wimbledon final, which Serena won.

Among the men, third seed and 14-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal is looking to extend his superiority over Tomas Berdych in their last eight showdown later Tuesday.

The Spaniard has an imposing 18-3 record over the seventh seeded Czech, winning the last 17 encounters, but insists they both start from scratch on Rod Laver Arena.

British sixth seed Andy Murray will have the home crowd against him when he takes on mercurial 19-year-old local Nick Kyrgios in the other last eight clash.

Murray, a two-time Grand Slam champion but luckless in Melbourne in three losing finals, said in a column for The Age newspaper Tuesday that he was experienced enough to handle the situation.

Instead, he feels the pressure will be on Kyrgios with the home crowd baying for an upset.

“I’ve been through that for 10 years at Wimbledon — it’s something you have to learn how to deal with,” he said of the home expectations.

 

- Stressed out -

 

Sharapova, who also dumped Bouchard from the French Open semi-finals last year, gave no quarter on Rod Laver Arena, hitting 18 winners and forcing 30 unforced errors from the 20-year-old.

“The first two or three balls are so aggressive from her side,” Sharapova said. “I just tried to keep my ground, I knew she was going to go at it and be aggressive.”

Makarova, her right thigh heavily strapped, said she was trying to stay grounded and not let expectations get to her with Sharapova looming.

“I need to believe in myself. I’m trying not to really think that it’s semis, that I’m one step from the final, but that it’s just a normal match like always,” she said.

“Just go out there and enjoy my game.”

Halep came into the match as favourite but her trademark fighting qualities deserted her, with the talented 23-year-old saying she felt stressed by the occasion.

“I practised very well in the morning, but I was a little bit too stressed before I started the match,” she said. “It was not really pressure, just a little bit stressed. I don’t know why,” she said.

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Attack on Ukraine’s Mariupol targeted civilians: UN

Relatives of Ukrainian man Oleksander Demchenko, who was killed during shelling, look on during his funeral at a cemetary in Mariupol on January 26, 2015

Moscow (AFP) – The UN said a rocket attack that killed 30 people in a city in eastern Ukraine deliberately targeted civilians, as Russian President Vladimir Putin spurned Western calls to rein in a pro-Moscow insurgency.

A senior UN official told an emergency Security Council meeting that the deadly rocket barrage on the port city of Mariupol came from pro-Russian rebel-controlled territory and sought to strike a civilian population, in violation of international humanitarian law.

Putin earlier ridiculed the Ukrainian army as NATO’s “foreign legion” after the Western alliance’s NATO-Ukraine Commission met to discuss a surge in fighting that has led to a spate of civilian deaths and put pressure on Ukraine’s troubled military.

Another 12 people were reported killed Monday, including seven Ukrainian soldiers, as Kiev accused the pro-Russian rebels of firing more than 100 times over the past day on both military positions and civilian areas.

Fighting was said to be particularly intense near the government-held city of Debaltseve, halfway between the rebel strongholds of Donetsk and Lugansk, where the military said separatists were attacking with tanks and multiple rocket launchers.

Western governments and Kiev accuse Moscow of arming, training and fighting alongside the rebels. Russia denies any direct involvement, although repeated sightings of large numbers of sophisticated heavy weapons being used against Ukrainian forces has stretched the credibility of those denials.

UN Under Secretary-General Jeffrey Feltman told the emergency Security Council meeting late Monday that a crater analysis by European monitors showed that the deadly rocket barrage was fired from territory controlled by pro-Moscow rebels.

“Mariupol lies outside of the immediate conflict zone. The conclusion can thus be drawn that the entity which fired these rockets knowingly targeted a civilian population,” said Feltman.

“We must all send an unequivocal message: The perpetrators must be held accountable and brought to justice,” he said.

- ‘Cannon fodder’ -

Putin, on a visit to Saint Petersburg, claimed Ukrainian men wanted to flee to Russia because they did not want to become “cannon fodder” in an army that he described as mostly “volunteer nationalist battalions”.

“In essence, this is not an army, this is a foreign legion — in this particular case NATO’s foreign legion, which of course does not pursue the objective of serving Ukraine’s national interests,” Putin said.

He said the aim was “Russia’s containment” and that the Ukrainian government was not interested in a peaceful settlement.

NATO head Jens Stoltenberg later dismissed the comments as “nonsense”.

“The foreign forces in Ukraine are Russian,” Stoltenberg told a press conference at the alliance’s headquarters in Brussels. “So I think that is in a way the problem, that there are Russian forces in Ukraine and that Russia backs the separatists with equipment. And we have seen a substantial increase in the flow of equipment from Russia to the separatists in Ukraine.”

The unravelling of a September truce deal has picked up pace in the past few days, with the main rebel leader in the Donetsk region last week announcing he would no longer take part in peace talks and planned to seize more territory.

Rebels distanced themselves from Saturday’s rocket attack on a residential area of Mariupol, the last major city in the country’s two separatist provinces still controlled by Kiev. 

However, monitors from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe said the rockets were fired from the direction of separatist-held areas.

The leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko, initially claimed Saturday to have launched an offensive aimed at taking Mariupol, but as the extent of the bloodshed became apparent he denied ordering an assault on the industrial port on the Sea of Azov. Mariupol remained calm on Monday.

- More sanctions? -

The 15-member UN Security council was meeting after Russia at the weekend blocked a statement condemning the violence in Mariupol and citing Zakharchenko’s announcement of the offensive.

Russia is already under heavy Western sanctions over its alleged actions in Ukraine and the recent violence has led to threats of new measures against Moscow.

US President Barack Obama vowed to ramp up pressure on the Kremlin after Saturday’s slaughter in Mariupol. Analysts say that if rebel forces did capture the city, they would then be close to creating a land corridor linking Russia to the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea, another Ukrainian province that Moscow annexed last March.

Obama said he would look at all options — short of military intervention — to restrain Putin’s alleged campaign to cripple Ukraine’s pro-Western leadership by stripping away their country’s vital eastern industrial base.

In a call to Putin, French President Francois Hollande declared he was “very concerned” by the rise in violence and stressed the necessity for an immediate end to the aggression, a position shared by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who was also on the call.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko told his top generals that he had asked the European Union to tighten its own sanctions on Russia when EU foreign ministers hold a special session in Brussels on Thursday.

Both sides on the ground accuse the other of endangering civilians by firing into built-up areas.

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eSight Glasses Give Sight to the Blind – Watch a Mother See Her Baby for the First Time

New technology alleviates blind spots giving clear fields of vision to the legally blind.

It’s gotten to the point where whenever we see the letter “e” in front of a word, we sigh a silent breath of relief.  Think about it.  You don’t have to have to spend gas money to go downtown because e-Tickets are available.  You don’t have to wait 5-7 days to send or receive a message because everybody has e-mail.  You don’t even have to go into the bank half the time because e-checks and e-transfers are in widespread use.

That sexy, convenient “e” stands for electronic and it’s made its way from business and financial institutions to the arena of science.  Specifically, eSight glasses are on the market and they literally give sight to the blind.  eSight glasses may look cumbersome compared to regular frames but they hold a camera and display technology that is able to capture images in real-time video.  Wearers are also able to magnify and enhance images to their comfort level.

Currently, these glasses are not eligible for health insurance discounts and are available for $15,000.00.  The eSight eyewear company helps its customers with fundraising activities.  Watch below as a blind woman wearing eSight glasses sees her newborn for the first time.

 

 

Doprah No Filtah is a clinical research professional and health enthusiast.  She holds a Master of Science in Health Science from Touro University and a B.A. in Human Services from George Washington University.   When she’s not ensuring the quality of over-the-counter supplements at the Food and Drug Administration, she is off listening to some dope underground hip hop.  Follow her on Twitter @SNSNightlifeMag.

 

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