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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Academy Awards 2012 with full details!!!!!!!!!!


Christopher Plummer accepts the supporting actor award for "Beginners" during the 84th Annual Academy Awards on Feb. 26, 2012, in Hollywood, Calif.
 (Credit: Getty)
(CBS/AP) Updated 10:27 p.m. ET
Christopher Plummer became the oldest Oscar winner in history on Sunday night, when he picked up the supporting actor prize for his role as an elderly widower who comes out as gay in "Beginners."
"You're only two years older than me, darling," the 82-year-old actor he crooned to his statuette at the 84th Academy Awards ceremony. "Where have you been all my life? I have a confession to make. When I first emerged from my mother's womb, I was already rehearsing my Oscar speech."
Plummer and Octavia Spencer, the supporting actress winner for her breakout role in "The Help," both dominated in their categories at previous award shows this season, and were considered virtual locks for their Oscars.
Spencer wept throughout her breathless speech, in which she apologized, between laughing and crying, for running a bit long on her time limit.
"Thank you, Academy, for putting me with the hottest guy in the room," Spencer said, referring to last year's supporting-actor winner Christian Bale, who presented her the Oscar.
Martin Scorsese's Paris adventure "Hugo" won five Oscars, including the first two prizes of the night, for cinematography and art direction. It also won for visual effects, sound mixing and sound editing. It was a great start for Scorsese's film, which led contenders with 11 nominations.
"The Artist," the night's other top contender with 10 nods, took the awards for costume design and original score. Other prizes went to "Rango" for animated feature film, Iran's "A Separation" for foreign language film and "The Iron Lady" for makeup.
Billy Crystal  got the ceremony off to a lively start with a star-laden montage in which he hung out with Justin Bieber and got a wet kiss from George Clooney. Back as Oscar host for the ninth time, Crystal also did his signature introduction of the best-picture nominees with a goofy song.
Both "Hugo" and "The Artist" are nominated for the night's highest honor, best picture. Competing against them in the category are George Clooney's family drama "The Descendants"; the Deep South tale "The Help" (featuring best actress nominee Davis and supporting actress favorite Octavia Spencer); Woody Allen's romantic fantasy "Midnight in Paris"; Brad Pitt's baseball tale "Moneyball" and his family saga "The Tree of Life"; Steven Spielberg's World War I epic "War Horse"; and Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock's Sept. 11 story "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close."
The lead-acting categories are where the drama lies. Best actress shapes up as a two-woman race between Davis as a courageous maid leading an effort to reveal the hardships of black housekeepers' lives in "The Help" and Meryl Streep as British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in "The Iron Lady."
The record-holder with 17 acting nominations, Streep has won twice and would become only the fifth performer to receive three Oscars. Jack Nicholson, Ingrid Bergman and Walter Brennan all earned three, while Katharine Hepburn won four.
It's been almost three decades since Streep last received an Oscar, for 1982's "Sophie's Choice." Though she has the most acting nominations, she also has the most losses - 14. Another loss would be her 13th in a row.
Best actor also looks like a two-person contest between Clooney as the distressed patriarch of a Hawaiian clan in "The Descendants" and Dujardin as a silent-era superstar whose career tanks as talking pictures take over in "The Artist."
It would be the second Oscar for Clooney, who won the supporting actor prize for 2005's "Syriana." While French actresses have won before, among them Marion Cotillard and Juliette Binoche, Dujardin would be the first actor from France to receive an Oscar.
"The Artist" has dominated Hollywood honors this season, winning key prizes at the Golden Globes and awards shows held by the Directors, Producers and Screen Actors guilds. If the film comes away with the best-picture trophy, it would be the first win for a silent film since the war story "Wings" was named outstanding picture at the inaugural Oscars in 1929.
Which film will win best picture? Who will take the acting awards? Which stars will stun on the red carpet? Share all your Academy Awards predictions in the comments.

Academy Awards 2012: Who's nominated and who will win !!!!!!!!!!!!


 


Her turn as Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady is a bravura performance that goes beyond impersonation and finds a sad and regal truth about a once-powerful woman now battling memory loss. Moreover, it's the kind of thing Hollywood loves. But giving the Oscar to Streep would seem so, well, déjà vu.
Will win: Davis stole every scene from Streep in the 2008 film Doubt, and she will steal the Oscar from her this year. It will be a well-deserved win - Davis's performance as the downtrodden maid in The Help is a wonderfully subtle amalgam of dignity, humiliation and, finally, strength - that is helped along by the fact that she is a relative newcomer to the Oscars (she was nominated for her supporting role in Doubt), and that minority actors have been shut out for too long. She would join Halle Berry as the only African-American woman to win the Best Actress Oscar.
Meryl Streep, best actress nominee for her role in "The Iron Lady" arrives at the 84th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, February 26, 2012.
Best Supporting Actor
Nominees: Kenneth Branagh (My Week with Marilyn), Jonah Hill (Moneyball), Nick Nolte (Warrior), Christopher Plummer (Beginners), Max von Sydow (Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close)
Should win: Branagh was hilarious as Sir Laurence Olivier in My Week With Marilyn, but this is Plummer's year. He was previously nominated in 2009 for The Last Station, an accomplished turn that nevertheless felt like a last-minute acknowledgment that this brilliant performer had never won an Oscar. In Beginners, he plays an older man who comes out of the closet after his wife dies, and he brings a tone of tender urbanity that is so economical, you almost don't notice your heart is being broken. An exquisite miniature from a master.
Will win: Plummer.
Best Supporting Actress
Nominees: Berenice Bejo (The Artist), Jessica Chastain (The Help), Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids), Janet McTeer (Albert Nobbs), Octavia Spencer (The Help)
Should win: If they gave awards for most memorable scene, Mc-Carthy would walk away with it for her pooping bridesmaid in Bridesmaids. But Spencer is also difficult to forget: Minny, her outspoken maid (what is it with all the maids?) in The Help gives the picture much of its backbone, and she brings to it the perfect combination of anger, sass and feistiness. She's a scenestealer, and scene-stealers always win the supporting awards.
Will win: Spencer.
Best Director
Nominees: Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist), Alexander Payne (The Descendants), Martin Scorsese (Hugo), Woody Allen (Midnight in Paris), Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life)
Should win: All of them, really, but the most interesting work was done by Malick, who created not just a world - Texas in the 1950s - but an entire universe. Malick's poetic/philosophical/ontological coming-of-age story encompassed the free and open fields of a Texas childhood with the cloistered terrors of an unhappy father, and, as a kind of bonus, the creation of the universe itself, a dreamy special-effects metaphor of one man's life.
Astounding, really.
Will win: The Artist director Hazanavicius has several things going for him, including momentum, freshness, and the sheer courage of his project: a Frenchman coming to Hollywood to make a silent movie about American cinema. The historic tropes, the visual storytelling, and the bandwagon effect will propel him to Oscar.
If you pay attention to the early awards - the Golden Globes, the Producers' Guild, the Directors' Guild and others - it's going to be a silent night tonight when the Academy Awards are handed out. The silent film, The Artist, is the odds-on favourite to dominate. But is it worthy?
Here's who should win (and who will win) the main Oscars on Sunday night:
BEST PICTURE
Nominees: The Artist, The Descendants, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, The Help, Hugo, Midnight in Paris, Moneyball, The Tree of Life, War Horse
Should win: The combination of "show" and "business" is nowhere more apparent than in this category, where art and entertainment battle. The Tree of Life is the most daring and artful film, but The Artist - a silent movie about an actor who can't adapt to the era of talkies - is the year's most delightful surprise. It's a robust combination of novelty, ingenuity and sheer joy that, moreover, feeds into the zeitgeist. (Hugo is also concerned with old cinema; Midnight In Paris celebrates 1920s culture; and Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close features a silent performance by Max von Sydow.) It would be only the second silent movie (after Wings, the 1927 silent that won the first Oscar) to be named best picture.
Will win: The Artist.
BEST ACTOR
Nominees: Demian Bichir (A Better Life), George Clooney (The Descendants), Jean Dujardin (The Artist), Gary Oldman (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), Brad Pitt (Moneyball)
Should win: In a normal year, this award would go to Clooney, who showed new depths of vulnerability and confusion as the lawyer with a comatose wife in The Descendants. There are two Clooneys: the Ocean's Eleven smoothie and the conflicted alpha male of Up in the Air, Michael Clayton or even Syriana, for which he won the Supporting Actor Oscar in 2005. This role is different, though. Clooney allows himself to be clunky (those flip-flops!), lost, and even sexually humiliated. It's a sly bit of casting by director Alexander Payne that undermines Clooney's hunky image and calls on him to discover real emotion.
Will win: Dujardin's turn as George Valentin in The Artist is a charming, insouciant performance of old-school charisma, all accomplished with (practically) no words. It's a different kind of acting in a different kind of picture, and while Dujardin works in a much more limited range, he was irresistible as the swashbuckling silent film star who falls and rises again. He'll be carried along by The Artist wave to the first Best Actor Oscar for a Frenchman.
Best Actress
Nominees: Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs), Viola Davis (The Help), Rooney Mara (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady), Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn)
Should win: You can't say that Hollywood has ignored Streep: She has 17 Oscar nominations, more than any other actor in history. But academy voters seem to be of two minds about her. She's almost always good enough to nominate, but she would win every year if they let her, and it wouldn't look good. (Streep's latest Oscar came in 1982, for Sophie's Choice.)
And the winner is - Your guide to the Oscar categories and the nominees,
WATCHING THE OSCARS
Where & when: The red carpet live broadcast begins at 7 p.m. tonight on ABC and at 8 p.m. on CTV. The ceremony begins at 8: 30 p.m. on CTV and ABC.
More online: For more Oscar stories and photos of the stars, go to ottawacitizen.com/oscars
AND THE WINNER IS ... A GUIDE TO THE NOMINEES
BEST PICTURE
The Artist
The Descendants
Extremely Loud & Incredibly
Close
The Help
Hugo
Midnight in Paris
Moneyball
The Tree of Life
War Horse
BEST DIRECTOR
Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris
Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life
Alexander Payne, The Descendants
Martin Scorsese, Hugo
BEST ACTOR
Demian Bichir, A Better Life
George Clooney, The Descendants
Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Gary Oldman, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Brad Pitt, Moneyball
BEST ACTRESS
Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs
Viola Davis, The Help
Rooney Mara, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
Michelle Williams, My Week With Marilyn
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Kenneth Branagh, My Week With Marilyn
Jonah Hill, Moneyball
Nick Nolte, Warrior
Christopher Plummer, Beginners
Max Von Sydow, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Berenice Bejo, The Artist
Jessica Chastain, The Help
Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids
Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
Octavia Spencer, The Help
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM
A Cat In Paris
Chico & Rita
Kung Fu Panda 2
Puss in Boots
Rango
BEST FOREIGN FILM
Bullhead, Belgium
Footnote, Israel
In Darkness, Poland
Monsier Lazhar, Canada
A Separation, Iran
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Midnight in Paris
Margin Call
A Separation
The Artist
Bridesmaids
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
The Descendants
Hugo
The Ides of March
Moneyball
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
BEST ART DIRECTION
The Artist
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
Hugo
Midnight in Paris
War Horse
BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Anonymous
The Artist
Hugo
Jane Eyre
W.E.
BEST ORIGINAL SONG
Man or Muppet from The Muppets
Real in Rio from Rio
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
The Adventures of Tintin
The Artist
Hugo
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
War Horse
BEST DOCUMENTARY
Hell and Back Again
If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth
Liberation Front
Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory
Pina
Undefeated
BEST FILM EDITING
The Artist
The Descendants
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Hugo
Moneyball
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
The Artist
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Hugo
The Tree of Life
War Horse
BEST MAKEUP
Albert Nobbs
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
The Iron Lady
BEST SOUND EDITING
Drive
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Hugo
Transformers: Dark of the Moon
War Horse
BEST SOUND MIXING
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Hugo
Moneyball
Transformers: Dark of the Moon
War Horse
BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
Hugo
Real Steel
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Transformers: Dark of the Moon
BEST DOCUMENTARY (SHORT)
The Barber of Birmingham: Foot Soldier of the Civil Rights Movement
God Is the Bigger Elvis
Incident in New Baghdad
Saving Face
The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom
BEST SHORT FILM (ANIMATED)
Dimanche/Sunday
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris
Lessmore
La Luna
A Morning Stroll
Wild Life
BEST SHORT FILM (LIVE ACTION)
Pentecost
Raju
The Shore
Time Freak
Tuba Atlantic

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen 

Daytona 500 Start Time Delayed By Rain

Rain Delay Daytona 500
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- NASCAR's premier event, the season-opening Daytona 500, is being delayed by rain.
Although heavy showers have stopped and numerous jet driers are pushing water off Daytona International Speedway, radar shows more storm cells moving toward the high-banked track.
"Radar is not our friend right now," NASCAR executive Steve O'Donnell wrote on his Twitter feed. "Still drying, but looking ominous. If we get hit again, it does not look good."
Rain saturated the famed speedway earlier Sunday, sending fans scattering for cover and leaving everyone in wait-and-see mode. Puddles of water formed in parts of the infield, and many fans got drenched as they tried to make the best of a less-than-ideal situation.
Drivers retreated to their motorhomes, relaxing while keeping an eye on developments. Former Daytona 500 winners Jamie McMurray and Trevor Bayne did in-studio interviews with Fox.
"Obviously, you want to go race," driver AJ Allmendinger said. "We get to race when we race. I know it (stinks) for the people sitting out there because they've got to sit in the rain. But for us, we go in here and we have pushup contests, we eat a lot of food and we have a good time."
Few others were enjoying the dreary day.
"Man this rain delay is a killer!" Nationwide Series champion Ricky Stenhouse Jr. posted on Twitter. "First (hash)Daytona500 is on hold."
NASCAR officials intend to wait as long as possible in hopes of getting the 500-mile race in Sunday. NASCAR says Fox is committed to broadcasting the event, even it means going head to head with the NBA All-Star game and the Oscars.
The last shortened Daytona 500 was Matt Kenseth's 2009 victory, when rain stopped the event 48 laps from the finish. He was declared the winner while the cars were parked on pit road.
The 2010 race had more than two hours in delays as NASCAR twice stopped the event to fix a pesky pothole in the surface. Jamie McMurray held off Earnhardt Jr. to win that race.
The season opener is NASCAR's most prestigious event, and this one comes with several intriguing story lines for a racing series trying to capitalize on the success of last season's captivating championship race.
Danica Patrick will make her Daytona 500 debut once the race begins, and it will be the first of 10 scheduled Sprint Cup Series events this season. She left IndyCar behind for a full-time move to NASCAR and will race for the Nationwide Series championship driving for JR Motorsports.
She arrived at the pre-race driver meeting Sunday with three-time NASCAR champion Tony Stewart, the owner of her Cup car. Stewart is trying to snap an 0-for-13 losing streak in NASCAR's biggest race of the year.
Stewart's 17 victories at Daytona include everything but the 500, ranking him second on the all-time list behind the late Dale Earnhardt's 34 wins. Stewart will start third when the race goes green. On the pole will be Carl Edwards, who lost the championship to Stewart last season on a tie-breaker when Stewart won the season finale at Homestead.
Dale Earnhardt Jr., the 2004 Daytona 500 champion, takes a 129-race losing streak into the event. His last victory was in 2008, his first season with powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports.
Rain could put it all on hold - and leave NASCAR with a small spotlight.
"It's one of those days here in Daytona where it pops up and falls off and pops up and falls off," NASCAR president Mike Helton said. "But as the day progresses, we think the chances of the pop-ups diminish quite a bit. Hopefully this will be the last big cell we see and things will start falling apart and we can get the track dry and go on and get finish and run the Daytona 500 today."
The track takes about two and a half hours to dry, and the race usually takes four hours. So officials are doing the math while keeping an eye on the radar. No Daytona 500 has ever been postponed.
"We are equipped," Helton said. "The Daytona International Speedway has every drying piece of machinery they got across the country here today, because we know that the fans at home and the fans here in Daytona want to see the race run. We do, too. The sooner, the better."
The forecast calls for intermittent showers most of the afternoon, and even worse weather is on tap for Monday.
"I got a feeling this is going to be a long day," driver David Ragan posted on Twitter. "I really feel bad for the fans that are soaking wet. I am going to make a grocery store run."

NASCAR postpones Daytona 500 for first time ever !!!!!


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — NASCAR has raced on the beach at Daytona, under the lights and even around a pesky pothole.
But never on a Monday — until now.
The Daytona 500 was postponed Sunday for the first time in its 54-year history after heavy rain saturated Daytona International Speedway.
NASCAR officials spent more than four hours waiting for a window to dry the famed track, but it never came. When the latest storm cell passed over the speedway around 5 p.m., they had little choice but to call it a day.
The 500-mile race was rescheduled for noon Monday. It will be aired on Fox.
"This is one of the toughest things for us drivers," pole-sitter Carl Edwards said. "It's now who can really stay focused. That's not just the drivers, that's the pit crews, the crew chiefs, everyone, the officials. But I think we'll be just fine."
But Monday might be another test for both drivers and fans.
The forecast calls for more rain, and officials are prepared to wait all day and into the night to avoid a Tuesday race, which would strain teams that must get to Phoenix for next week's race.
"The longer runway we have tomorrow to get in the Daytona 500, the greater the likelihood for us to start and finish the event on Monday," NASCAR spokesman Kerry Tharp said. "There are certainly a lot of considerations that go into the start time decision, and we believe scheduling it for noon gives us the best opportunity for us to get the race in tomorrow."
Eight previous Daytona 500s have endured rain delays, the latest in 2009. But never before had storms forced NASCAR's premier event to be moved.
"I think that's a pretty good record for NASCAR," Edwards said. "They've been living right to have 53 of these and never have one postponed. That's pretty spectacular. ... I think NASCAR, they're doing the right thing, you know, not dragging this out."
Noontime showers sent fans scattering for cover and leaving everyone in wait-and-see mode. Puddles of water formed in parts of the infield, and many fans got drenched as they tried to make the best of a less-than-ideal situation.
Drivers retreated to their motorhomes, relaxing while keeping an eye on developments. Edwards, Brad Keselowski and others took naps. Former Daytona 500 winners Jamie McMurray and Trevor Bayne did in-studio interviews with Fox. Another previous race winner, Ryan Newman, played with his daughter in the motorhome lot.
"I guess I'm gonna have to win the first Monday Daytona 500," driver Greg Biffle said. "As you can tell, I'm still in my uniform because I was optimistic that this weather was gonna get out of here and we were going to get this thing going. But I'll have to save my energy for tomorrow.
"I know a lot of race fans are disappointed and a lot of people at home on TV, but we just hope they tune in tomorrow."
The last shortened Daytona 500 was Matt Kenseth's victory three years ago, when rain stopped the event 48 laps from the finish. He was declared the winner while the cars were parked on pit road.
The 2010 race had more than two hours in delays as NASCAR twice stopped the event to fix a pothole in the surface. Jamie McMurray held off Dale Earnhardt Jr. to win that race.
This time around, drivers didn't even get in their cars.
"I didn't know when to eat. I didn't know when to rest. I didn't know what to do," Bobby Labonte said. "I never took my uniform off. I took a nap. I think we cleaned out the refrigerator snacking on things."
Now, NASCAR must deal with the downside of moving its biggest race. Ratings and attendance will suffer, falling short of what the series expected.
Fans surely will have complaints, too.
Daytona president Joie Chitwood said he understood fans were frustrated about the scheduling change that pushed the race back one week later than usual. NASCAR and the track made the decision to move the start of the season to address an awkward early off weekend and to avoid potential conflicts with the Super Bowl.
Had the race been run on its traditional Sunday, it would have been completed under a bright, blue sky.
"I'm sure I'm going to have some customers tell me about the date change and the challenges that we have with it," Chitwood said. "But I think weather is unpredictable. I think based on the NASCAR schedule, the TV schedule on whole, this was the right move for the industry. We'll continue to work with the last weekend of February.
"It's unfortunate that this had to happen the first year after we made that change. I'm sure I'll be talking to a number of customers in the next weeks ahead about that situation."
Chitwood also said trying to wait out the rain any longer Sunday wasn't an option, because the Daytona 500 deserves better than being crammed into the late evening hours.
Pointing to several intriguing story lines, NASCAR was hoping to capitalize on the success of last season's captivating championship race.
The Daytona 500 is the first of 10 scheduled Sprint Cup Series events this season for Danica Patrick, who left IndyCar behind for a full-time move to NASCAR. She will race for the Nationwide Series championship driving for JR Motorsports.
Three-time and defending NASCAR champion Tony Stewart is trying to snap an 0-for-13 losing streak in the 500. Stewart's 17 victories at Daytona include everything but the 500, ranking him second on the all-time list behind the late Dale Earnhardt's 34 wins. Stewart will start third when the race goes green.
Earnhardt Jr., the 2004 Daytona 500 champion, takes a 129-race losing streak into the event. His last victory was in 2008, his first season with powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

2012 OSCAR NOMINATIONS || 2012 oscar awards winners || 2012 oscar awards live streeming & pics !!!!


The 2012 Oscar nominations have been announced! Lots of award season regulars, like The Artist and The Descendants, got some love, but there were also a handful of surprises, like nominations for Nick Nolte, Gary Oldman, and Terrence Malick. Bridesmaids also scored big, with noms for best original screenplay and best supporting actress for Melissa McCarthy.
The Academy chose nine films for best picture, with lots of familiar titles in there, plus a couple that had early awards buzz but haven't necessarily had consistent attention, like Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and The Tree of Life. The films that racked up the most nominations were Hugo with 11 and The Artist with 10.
To see the full list of nominations, just keep reading.

CS Results December 2011 | ICSI Results 2012 Institute of Company Secretaries of India


Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI) has declared CS Results for Foundation, Executive and Professional examination December 2011 Session. Candidates can check CS Results – December 2011 Session given link below
http://www.icsi.edu/
or
http://icsi.examresults.net/dec-2011-eresult1.htm
Congratulations to all!!

Review: Sony Tablet P !!!!!!!!


In recent times, we've seen the tablet market overflow with devices claiming to be 'iPad killers'. Every other tablet just wanted to prove itself to be better than the iPad but while none have been better, only few such as Motorola (Xoom) and Samsung (Galaxy Tab 10.1) can claim to have come anywhere close.

And then there was Sony. It did not claim to be the next iPad killer, rather tried to innovate and come up with something new that would grab the attention of the tablet market. Sony finally launched the Tablet S, with a foldable magazine-like design and the Tablet P, which folds in the centre like Nintendo's 3DS console. Today we review the PlayStation certified Tablet P and find out if it is worth your time.

Design & Build

On first impressions, the device looked like the Nokia communicator on steroids which isn't a good thing. The unique clamshell design is what caught our interest. The tablet folds right in the middle supported by two hinges on either side. The exterior is plastic-y with a silver finish that is quite capable of attracting scratches. The advantage of the design is that the screen remains protected at all times. Built solid, the Tablet P feels incredibly light at approximately 372g. The weight is evenly distributed and one won't feel tired holding it for longer durations.

Once you unfold the device, you get two 5.5-inch screens inches boasting Sony's TruBlack LCD technology. They however, do act as fingerprint magnets. There's a notification light that runs at the bottom. It flashes green for mail and social network notifications and changes colour to red to indicate low battery power.

tabp4.jpg
All ports and slots are present on one side. There's a micro USB port (for data connectivity only) along with a charging port, volume buttons and the power button on the right panel. The device does not charge via the USB port which is disappointing as you have to carry the charger at all times. The headphones jack finds room at the bottom of the device.

The removable plastic sheet reveals the SIM card slot on the top while the battery and microSD slot sit below. The tablet has 1GB of RAM and 4GB of built-in storage. It offers expandable storage upto 32 GB via a microSD card slot. The packaging included an AC adapter, a rechargeable battery pack and a 2GB microSD card.

Display

The dual 5.5' screens are an absolute delight as far as picture quality is considered. The 1024x480 resolution makes photos and videos appear sharp and crisp and they look really fantastic. The sad part is that you can view them only on the top screen with the bottom screen displays the controls.

This does make sense since it would be annoying to watch videos with the bezel in the centre splitting them into two. But nevertheless, it still isn't comforting to watch videos crammed into one tiny screen, especially if you're opting to watch a film. The black bars on either side make it worse because of the narrow aspect ratio. YouTube videos, however, play utilizing both displays, which is a problem in itself, as the split down the middle hampers the visual aesthetics of the video.

Camera Quality

The 5MP auto-focus rear camera shoots sharp pictures as would be expected from a Sony device. Though it still isn't optimized for a tablet of this stature, Sony has made an effort here. Video mode offers three options: high, low and YouTube. One can shoot videos in 720p, though the quality isn't that great to rave about. The presence of a flash is highly missed especially under low light conditions. You might want to step out into the open or have a well lit set-up to extract good shots. The camera offers digital zoom up to 8x but that comes at the cost of image quality. The front-facing VGA camera also does a fairly decent job while video chatting.

tabp2.jpgOS & Interface

The tablet ships with Android 3.2 (Honeycomb). Sony tried to play around a bit with Honeycomb to optimize it for the dual-screen Tablet P and an ICS upgrade is on the cards this year. There are 5 customisable screens. There's a launcher at the top of the screen with the Google search box and shortcuts to the browser, mail, social feeds and video gallery just next to it. The top right corner houses the Favourites shortcut, listing all your Sony-bought content and recently added pictures and videos as well. The Apps shortcut adjacent to Favourites, opens up into a glossy white display of icons that glisten occasionally.

The lower screen turns into a full-fledged keyboard whenever necessary. Typing with both hands in landscape mode isn't comfortable at all. You'd be better off typing with one hand and getting work done faster. The portrait mode offers convenience of typing but just feels weird. The device supports flash and the in-house browser does a fine job of running web pages smoothly. The pages loaded rather swiftly on our wireless connection and offered a seamless browsing experience.

Pre-Loaded Software

Most of Google's apps are already present, though YouTube is not (which is quite strange). Evernote and UStream look like they come preinstalled, instead they are just shortcuts leading to the Android market. Once installed, they worked just fine. There was also a shortcut of HD Gameloft which redirected to their site with a list of games to download for free.

The Social Feed Reader app integrates all your Facebook and Twitter feeds as one consolidated list. If you'd like to keep your feeds separate, you can always pay a visit to the Android market and download the respective apps. Then again, your feeds are displayed on the upper screen and the lower half prompts the keyboard when you want to type. There's an app called selectApp that enables you to access a website which enlists a range of apps (both paid and free) that are optimized for your tablet. We installed an app called 'box' which helps you view, share, store and send all your word documents, excels and pdfs and also collaborate with others online.

Most of the pre-installed apps do make good use of the dual screens. The Gallery app for instance, displays images as thumbnails in the bottom screen while you skim through the images on the top. The Music player app gives an aesthetic view of album art in the bottom screen. To select a new track, just pick the album by tapping it. You can view the tracks as cover art view sorted by album and by artist and also in your library. If you quit the app without turning the music off, a mini version of the player appears as a widget on the home screen.

With the Video player app, videos remain confined only to the top screen with the player controls in the lower half. This is both a good thing and a bad thing. While having controls present at all times can be rather handy, it is disappointing to see the video limited to such a tiny, disproportionate screen.

Another major flaw is that the Android Market app runs only on the upper screen with the lower half remaining absolutely blank. The dual-screen therefore, feels very alien in the Android world.

Performance

Video playback can be split between the two screens or assigned just to the one on top. Since the lower screen stays on the whole time, the battery tends to drain out rather quickly. Despite a 3,080 mAH battery, the maximum you can squeeze out of this beast is about 6 hours and that's with controlled brightness levels and browsing the web. The device took quite a long time to change orientation from landscape to portrait mode. We kept flipping it around to see if we got it right and that was very frustrating.

Sony's attempt to modify Android Honeycomb 3.2, has affected the usability of the device. The UI seemed sluggish while dragging icons between screens. The audio of the loudspeaker isn't that great and this comes as a shocker for a Sony product. You'll often find yourself reaching for your headphones.

The device works on both 3G and Wi-Fi connectivity. However, at times, it had troubles connecting to the Wi-Fi, though 3G worked just fine. What did impress us was the browser which was very smooth and the fact that apps loaded rather quickly. The tablet is also DLNA compatible to help stream digital content on a much bigger screen.

tabp3.jpg
Gaming

A feature that piqued our interest was the ability to play PlayStation 1 games. The build is well suited for games like Crash Bandicoot, which were comfortable to play. The Tegra 2 processor does a great job of handling such games like a piece of cake. Having said that, games that require the use of shoulder buttons might be a bit difficult to play since they are placed on the top display screen.

The good thing is that Sony was smart enough to provide options for an adjustable controller. You can resize and reassign the location of the buttons. Despite this clever tweak, you will miss the actual physical controls as offered in the Xperia Play or the Vita. The Angry Birds experience was very disappointing with the display only on the upper half. Though Fruit Ninja makes use of the dual screen, the division in between makes it difficult to slash targets.

Another huge letdown, especially for Xperia Play owners is that PlayStation games purchased earlier via the Android market for the Xperia Play cannot be installed on the Tablet P. You need to sign in to the device using your PlayStation Network account and pay for the games all over again!

Verdict

Sony's courage is quite admirable having ventured into the tablet arena with the Tablet P as one of its latest offerings (Tablet S being the other). We weren't quite sure of whether to appreciate it or discard it altogether. The device doesn't completely disappoint, but it isn't the best at what it does. Until Sony, tablets were single-screened to run the Android OS and that seemed ideal. Experiencing the Android OS on the Tablet P pushed us away from our comfort zone. Though the device has plenty of dedicated apps, the split screens ruin the experience, with the lower screen rendering no use at all for some apps.

Price tagged at a whopping Rs. 37,000, the Tablet P won't have many buyers, considering the fact that even its sibling the Tablet S costs anywhere between Rs. 30,000-Rs. 34,000. As a comparison, you could buy an iPad 2 3G 16GB for the same price and be left with some change.

If you don't own a tablet yet and are looking for something different and don't mind shelling out the money, you can pick this one up. But if you're a gamer, we'd suggest you wait for the PS Vita instead.

To see more pictures of the Sony Tablet P visit our photo gallery.

Pros
Compact clamshell design
Sharp display
DLNA support
Access to PS1 game titles

Cons
Split screen causes hindrances
Poor Wi-Fi connectivity
Poor speaker audio quality
Doesn't charge via USB

Price: Rs. 36,990

Ratings
Performance: 3
Features: 3
Ease of setup: 3.5
Ergonomics: 2.5
Wow factor: 3
Overall: 3

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The bridge to nowhere is back in 2012 race !!!!!!!!!!



The candidates debate Wednesday night. | Jay Westcott/POLITICO

“Oh no, not this again” — that was the sentiment of those in Ketchikan, Alaska, the town of about 8,000 known for its connection to the “Bridge to Nowhere,” after the infamous earmark project was prominently mentioned in Wednesday’s Republican presidential debate.
“While I was fighting to save the Olympics, you were fighting to save the ‘bridge to nowhere,’” former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney told fellow presidential candidate Rick Santorum.

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