Saturday, April 24, 2010

Spellbound: Amazing acrobatics / gymnastics troupe

I can't believe that boy is 18. Someone give him a sandwich! LOL

Watch this video on VideoSurf or see more Amanda Holden Videos or Simon Cowell Videos

I love these kids! They're great!

From Britain's Got Talent, meet The Arrangement:

Social Media Matters: Becoming a successful blogger takes many skills

Social Media Matters
By Brian Cormier
Friday, April 23, 2010
Moncton Times & Transcript
Pg. F5, Metro section

This week and next week, I'll be writing about blogging. I run two blogs and am a guest blogger on another one. Since I started my main blog in 2006, I've posted more than 3,000 items.

* What's a blog? If you're still not sure what a blog is, it's short for "web log," basically an online diary or log on anything that interests you. Your blog can be about your own personal life to something more niche market like a blog about your favourite hobby, such as knitting, pets, scrapbooking, cars, collectibles, etc.

* How do I get a blog? There are several free online platforms that provide blogging, including Google Blogger, WordPress, TypePad and others. Currently, I use Blogger, which is completely free. I'm able to do what I need there, including posting videos and photos. It's pretty much idiot-proof and very easy to you use. You can have a professional-looking blog set up in minutes.

I'm also in the process of learning WordPress, which is a bit more complicated than Blogger, but much more versatile. That particular blog will be a niche-market blog on social media. While I realize there are tons of those out there, it's something that I'm passionate about -- and that's the most important thing to do when you're blogging: blog about something you're passionate about! If you're good, the readers will come.

* How do I get people to read my blog? First of all, update often... a few times per week. On my personal blog, I try to update every day. With that said, most blogging programs will allow you to schedule posts. You can easily set up posts in advance to go online at a pre-set time.

Register your blog in the most popular search engines, especially Google. That is the search engine from which most of my traffic comes. Another thing you need to do in order to gain followers is to comment on other people's blogs. Often, they and their readers will click on your name to read your profile and then visit your blog.

With so many people on Facebook and Twitter these days, it's a no-brainer to post your blog links on these two social media platforms. I promote this column and my other columns through my blog and also post the links online to Facebook and Twitter when appropriate and timely. My traffic has definitely gone up since I started posting to Facebook and Twitter. These are also excellent ways for your friends to share your links, as well. The easier you make it for people to share your links, the more hits you'll get on your blog!

You can also set up feeds for your blog that will alert people whenever your blog is updated. Again, this is kind of a no-brainer unless you decide to provide "full feeds" or "partial feeds." This depends on how altruistic you are, I guess. If you provide a full feed, you're basically providing subscribers with the entire text of your blog post, negating any need to go to your blog. While this is convenient for your readers (which could be a good thing for you), it also can do a lot of damage to your traffic statistics. It's kind of like reading a newspaper article without having to buy the newspaper or even -- at least -- read the newspaper's website.

Personally, I'm not a fan of full feeds. I want people to actually visit my blog. While they're there, they may click on an ad or read other items that may interest them.

* Making money on your blog: You can make money on your blog, even if it's just a hobby. There are many ways to do this, but the easiest for most beginners is just to set up Google AdSense. This is very easy if you use Google's Blogger service, like I do.

Google will place either text link ads or graphic banner ads on whichever sections of your blog that you've chosen. Have I made money? Yes, a bit. I would make much more if I concentrated on learning Google AdSense strategies more and had a niche-market blog that got a lot of traffic. Because my blog is general and personal, my traffic is only modest. I may get a cheque or two per year from Google. (Cheques are only sent out after you hit $100 U.S. in your account.)

You can earn money by either the numbers of eyeballs who see your ads or by people clicking on your ads. And don't get the bright idea of clicking on your own ads to earn more income. Google frowns up on this and has ways of knowing. You will be banned if you're caught doing this. If 100 people per day go to your blog and your ads are getting 500 clicks daily, trust me, the red flags will be flying at Google pretty fast!

Google puts ads on your website based on what you're writing about. If you post about knitting, you'll notice the ads are about knitting. That's why having a general blog like me takes forever to earn income because my ads are all over the place (subject-wise). If I had a niche-market blog -- let's say, again, about knitting -- then the only people coming to my blog would be knitters and, of course, they would be much more interested in all those ads about knitting, right? Right! If they're interested, they may click.

Another way of earning an income while blogging is affiliate programs, i.e. selling thing like e-books by another author, courses, etc. You can even sell your own e-book. If you write an e-book about how to knit and have a popular knitting blog, why not sell the e-book through your blog? If you sell it for $9.95 per copy, you can earn some extra cash with virtually no outlay of money.

* Keep it professional! If you decide to blog, remember that spelling is important. If you can't spell, use a spellchecker! A blog full of typos is a blog that will go unread and lack credibility. The blog represents you. If it's a mess of typos, it will reflect negatively on you and your efforts, even if you're an expert in your field.

Kevjumba: Fitness trainer

That's a terrible trick to play on your father... but of course I laughed my head off. :)

Friday, April 23, 2010

This week's Social Media Matters column...

... appears on page F5 of today's Moncton Times & Trancript in the Metro section. Columns this week and next week deal exclusively with blogging. Want to know more? Return here tomorrow when it will be posted online. Can't wait for tomorrow? Then click here to read it online on the Times & Transcript's website.

Social Media Matters appears every Friday in the Moncton Times & Transcript's Metro section.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

American Idol: Recap of Top 7 results show

The Top 7 became the Top 6 last night as yet another finalist was sent packing after receiving the fewest number of votes from American Idol viewers.

I predicted that the bottom three would be Aaron Kelly, Michael Lynche and Tim Urban, with Big Mike going home. I was correct on Aaron and Tim, but Big Mike was safe. The other member of the bottom three was a first-timer there -- and a bit of a surprise -- not a shock, but a surprise.

Who was it and who was sent home? Click here to read my Idol Chatter column in the Times & Transcript (Moncton) or click here to read Idol Chatter in The Daily Gleaner (Fredericton).

Watch the Top 6 perform next Tuesday at 9 p.m. Atlantic (8 p.m. Eastern) on Fox.

Many deep mysteries lurk within the deep freezer

Never mind the deep dark crawl space beneath the stairs of a serial killer's house in a scary movie. Forget the inside of a coffin containing a terrified victim who's been buried alive. And don't even think about what ghouls and demons lurk inside the attic of an old abandoned house built on an ancient burial ground.

The fact is, you haven't seen anything until you've opened my large freezer in the basement and discovered the incredible historic and archaeological artefacts therein.

If you're like me, that large appliance becomes nothing but a graveyard of freezer-burned meat bought on sale, bags of frozen vegetables bought two years ago during a fitness kick that lasted exactly six minutes and nine seconds and prepared meals in plastic containers that you swore you'd remember what they were so didn't bother writing the description on the cover or affixing a label.

I'm pretty sure I hold the Guinness World Record for most containers of frozen soup made from leftover turkey. Over the past couple of years, I've made several batches. I just keep forgetting that I haven't touched the previous batch, so now I have enough frozen turkey soup to supply the International Frozen Turkey Soup Festival, if there is such a thing. (Feel free to have the organizers give me a call if there is.)

And chicken breasts... you can never have too many chicken breasts. Well, actually, that's not true. I do indeed believe that I officially have too many frozen chicken breasts according to an old city bylaw passed years ago when someone was found dead in their house with 500 pounds of chicken breasts in their freezer. They were scared to eat them because they were saving them for a rainy day. Maybe they would lose their job or pension and need to eat from the freezer for a few weeks? Might as well be prepared, eh?

As it stands now, I could pretty much stop buying groceries for several months and just live on the contents of my freezers -- the one attached to my refrigerator and the large one in the basement -- also known as 'the graveyard.' I try to keep as much upstairs in the refrigerator freezer as I can. At least that stuff gets looked at and sees the light of day once every blue moon.

It's the large chest freezer downstairs ('the deep freeze,' as we call it around these parts) that concerns me. While I've managed to label most of the stuff -- and, of course, some of it is pretty obvious -- there are things in there that could be anything from some leftover casserole I made in the 1990s to mystery meat bought on sale when the Clintons were still in the White House... to Jimmy Hoffa.

I'm afraid to thaw the turkey I bought on sale before Christmas. I can't make more turkey soup. I just can't. There are at least 10 to 15 containers of soup there already -- turkey and other kinds. And you know what? I don't even eat soup that often. Sure, I like it and everything, but I just don't eat it fast enough.

Luckily, I had the wherewithal to figure out that writing the contents on the container with a grease pencil was very practical, especially when the food was still hot. The tip of the white grease pencil would melt a bit and leave nice, large, legible writing. (That's my Heloise-style tip of the day.) And it washes off easily, too, whenever you manage to eat the darn stuff and wash the container afterwards.

Before my grease pencil trick, though, I relied on my memory just like I rely on my memory when I buy stuff in bulk stores.

Oh sure, I thought I'd remember the difference between this flour and that flour... this whitish powder and that whitish powder... this greenish herb and that greenish herb. And, you know, for a few weeks, I would indeed remember.

But then, when the recipe I bought it for was made (and inevitably frozen, never to be seen again), I'd end up with a pantry full of little see-through plastic bags full of mystery stuff that all looked the same.

Now, before you remind me that there are tags in the bulk stores for writing down what you're buying, please be reminded that I'm a man. I don't ask for directions when I'm lost while driving, and I don't write down the name of the herb, spice, or other powdery stuff I'm buying at a bulk store. Like any typical man, I rely on my memory and ego. Unfortunately, the memory goes on vacation while the ego has nailed itself to the inside of my brain.

A pantry full of mystery powders, herbs and spices that all look the same. A freezer full of mystery meat, a kabillion containers of turkey soup and leftover mystery casseroles that I neglected to label. The next series in the CSI franchise could easily be called CSI Brian's Freezer.

I was at my mother's the other day and she, too, seems to be afflicted with this disease. She disappeared for a moment and then came to me holding a huge bag of frozen garlic cloves. "Do you want this?" she asked. "No," I answered. "Take it," she insisted. "I said no!" What the heck was I going to do with a huge bag of frozen garlic cloves?

Open a restaurant called Garlic MacGarlic's House of Garlicky Goodness? That was a serious amount of garlic, let me tell you.

Had I taken that bag of frozen garlic home, it would have been just like moving a corpse from one grave to another -- her freezer to my freezer.

I'll end up eating all that frozen turkey soup and freezer-burned mystery meat eventually -- maybe if I develop agoraphobia and refuse to leave the house for months on end. Besides, I'll need something on which to sprinkle all those mystery powders and herbs in my pantry.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

American Idol: Recap of Top 7 performance show

Last night on American Idol, the remaining seven contestants performed inspirational songs under the guidance of mentor Alicia Keys. I thought everyone did reasonably well, with a few standouts: Crystal Bowersox (as usual) and Lee DeWyze (as usual).

I think the next three contestants eliminated will be Michael Lynche, Tim Urban and Aaron Kelly... but in what order? And who do I think is going home tonight? To find out, click here to read my Idol Chatter column in the Times & Transcript (Moncton) or click here to read Idol Chatter in The Daily Gleaner (Fredericton).

Who goes home this week? Tune in to a special two-hour Idol Gives Back episode of American Idol beginning at 9 p.m. Atlantic / 8 p.m. Eastern on Fox! (My apologies for writing the wrong time in the column. This week is an exception to the usual 10 p.m. Atlantic / 9 p.m. Eastern results show.)

This week's Hump Day column...


... is about the food forgotten in our freezers. If you're like me, you could go a month without buying groceries just by eating what's in the freezer! And don't even get me started on all those clear plastic bags from the bulk store filled with unmarked herbs, spices and other powders that I vowed I would remember. Yeah right!

Check out Hump Day in the editorial section of today's Moncton Times & Transcript! The column will also be posted online here tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Bioprospecting NB Inc. rebrands itself as Soricimed Biopharma Inc.; announces corporate update

NEWS RELEASE

April 19, 2010
For immediate release

Bioprospecting NB Inc. rebrands itself as Soricimed Biopharma Inc.; announces corporate update

Moncton, N.B. / Sackville, N.B. – Following its 2010 annual general meeting held in Moncton, New Brunswick, today, BioProspecting NB Inc. provided a corporate update, including changes to its company leadership, the opening of an office in Moncton, as well as a new name and image.

Effective immediately, the company will be known as Soricimed Biopharma Inc. (www.soricimed.com). As well, the following announcements were made regarding the company’s leadership:

Company co-founder Jack Stewart, previously BioProspecting’s Chief Scientific Officer and Chairman will retain those positions with Soricimed Biopharma Inc.

Company co-founder Paul Gunn, previously BioProspecting’s President and Chief Financial Officer, becomes President and Chief Executive Officer of Soricimed Biopharma Inc.

Dr. Kenneth Keirstead, previously BioProspecting’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) will become Vice-Chairman of Soricimed Biopharma Inc.

Soricimed Biopharma Inc. is a private drug development company created in 2005 by Jack Stewart and Paul Gunn following the discovery and development of a proprietary peptide, soricidin. Soricidin is the basis for Soricimed Biopharma Inc.’s targeted cancer management program focused on an ovarian cancer therapeutic and a companion diagnostic. Using focused innovative strategies in collaboration with major world-class cancer research institutions, Soricimed’s drugs have demonstrated a capability to reduce cell viability and induce apoptosis (in vitro) and to reduce human tumour volume (in vivo) with no demonstrable toxicity. The company expects to enter clinical trials next year.

“To sum up what we do can be broken down this way,” said company President and CEO Paul Gunn, “our diagnostic finds cancer, while our drug kills cancer. We currently employ nine people and are looking to add more this year. Our laboratory is very focused, while specialty work is done by third-party facilities. This co-ordination is also done by our lab employees in Sackville.”

While the company has worked out of its state-of-the-art lab in Sackville, New Brunswick, since its inception, a corporate office recently opened in Moncton, New Brunswick, to complement the lab’s work. “Our executive team has significant experience in the pharmaceutical industry,” Mr. Gunn said, “and the partners we have on board are second-to-none in the field of cancer research, including the Atlantic Cancer Research Institute, the British Columbia Cancer Agency, NRC Institute for Biological Sciences, NRC Institute of Marine Biosciences, NRC Institute of BioDiagnostics-Atlantic, LAB Research Inc., Amplia Pharma Teck Inc., Algos Preclinical Services, and the Juravinski Cancer Centre.”

All of Soricimed’s technology is protected by international patents. “Our potential diagnostic market alone exceeds $11 billion annually,” Mr. Gunn said. “Our diagnostic for ovarian cancer will be able to find cancer faster, earlier and with more precision than what currently exists.”

Mr. Gunn says that Soricimed -- the company’s new name - offers both a look back at the company’s history, and a look forward into the company’s future. “Soricimed is a derivative of soricidin, the name given to company co-founder Jack Stewart’s original discovery,” he said. “We wanted something that had an attachment to the past but also positioned as a future oriented, leading edge biotech company.

“We are always looking at opportunities for growing our business,” Mr. Gunn. “That is we are also announcing today that Soricimed has opened a corporate office in Moncton that will complement the scientific work being done so well in Sackville.” The new office is located in the historic Moncton Times building at 18 Botsford Street.

Soricimed has received funding from organizations such as the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), which announced $2.9 million in funding through the Atlantic Innovation Fund in January 2010, as well as the National Research Council (NRC). Many private investors have come on board with the company, as well, several of which have benefited from the New Brunswick Small Business Investor Tax Credit managed through New Brunswick’s Department of Finance.

“With this new rebranding and continued progress on the scientific front, our next phase of development is very encouraging,” said Mr. Gunn. “We’re very confident that the work Soricimed is doing today will end up saving many lives in the future through the early detection and more efficient treatment of cancer.”

-30-

Media contact:

Paul Gunn
President and CEO
Soricimed Biopharma Inc.
(506) 872-2181
pgunn@soricimed.com
www.soricimed.com

More Glee: Sue Sylvester's Vogue video

You'll see this on Glee tonight at 10 p.m. Atlantic (9 p.m. Eastern) after American Idol on Fox!

Sue Sylvester (Glee) does VOGUE! from Madonna-X Portugal on Vimeo.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Sam Tsui's Glee audition

Sam makes some great videos and was recently featured on Oprah!

Charlieissocoollike: How to be famous?

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Barats & Bereta: This update rocks

Two of the funniest YouTubers around - Barats & Bereta - have a newly designed website. These guys are hilarious.