Archive for the ‘Rewards’ Category
When was the last time you counted the number of apps on your smartphone? The global average is 25 apps per individual. In South Korea, that number bounces up to 40 apps per smartphone. As of October of last year, Apple announced they had reached 1,000,000 apps available to users. When you consider that when the iPhone was first released back in 2008, there were only 800 apps, they’ve come a long way. How often do you use your apps? Here’s how the average smartphone user’s activity breaks down:
• 32% for games
• 18% for web browsing
• 18% for Facebook
• 8% for entertainment
• 8% for utility
• 6% for social networking
• 2% for news
• 2% for productivity
• 6% for “other.”
Full disclosure: Whenever I hear the name “Barcelona” I begin humming tunes from Company. But that’s my cross to bear. You should be thinking of Barcelona as a fantastic city to visit for a few days, weeks, or maybe even several months. There is that much to see and do. Like Paris, Barcelona got its start as a Roman city. If you poke around the city, you might stumble upon a Roman ruin or two. Also, legend has it that everybody’s favorite strongman, Hercules, had a hand in giving the city its start. That just goes to show you how Barcelona can be a mystical and magical destination. In fact, there is pretty much something amazing around every street corner. Here are the hot spots that should be included on your itinerary:
Believe it or not, Paris got its start as a Roman outpost. This was around 52 BC when Rome was flexing its empire and was looking to set up a base of operations to keep the Gallic upstarts in check. They settled on a place along the banks of the Seine that was home a local tribe who had already built a fort there. The Roman legions swooped in, conquered, and kept the city hopping through 486 A.D. After Rome fell, the Parisians were ready to pack up and move on, but were persuaded by St. Genevieve to stick around. Thank goodness they did, for what a great city it’s become. Today, Paris is often referred to as the City of Love and the City of Lights. A destination for artists, lovers, history buffs, and foodies alike, here’s where you should go when visiting Paris:
In academic circles, there have been debates about exactly who can be attributed to inventing pasta. One story has Marco Polo bringing it back from China. Another has Arabs sharing it with Sicilians in the ninth century. Regardless of who takes credit, all roads do lead to Rome with regard to the best uses of pasta. Amazing culinary dishes aren’t the only things we can thank Romans for inventing. They also perfected the aqueduct which delivered water to the city, roads that delivered everything else, and concrete, thanks to which so much of Ancient Rome is still standing. At the top of my travel bucket list is a trip to Italy. I imagine renting a car and roaming the countryside in search of everything. But before discovering the rest of Italy, iPoll explores some highlights of it’s greatest city.
As global cities go, London ranks at the top for culture, history, entertainment, and commerce. It’s the city where a majority of international flights touchdown to refuel. If you make the pond crossing and don’t make a stop in London, then you may be missing out on a wonderful experience. As a first time traveler to London, a crash course of idioms can be helpful. Crisps are potato chips, chips are French fries, and biscuits are cookies. If you need a bathroom break, ask for the nearest loo. You’ll “fancy” something as opposed to “want” it. You’ll take the “tube” instead of the subway. If you need a break from the fun, just tell folks you’re “knackered.” And maybe most important: if you refer to “pants”, you’re discussing underwear. “Trousers” is what you should keep in mind when talking about clothing items. There will be plenty more to pick up on as you make your way around this amazing town.
Once upon a time, if you wanted to get a message from one end of the country to the other, you would have to write it down and give it to some guy on a horse. The process took weeks. Then came the telegraph, which required you to be within striking distance of a telegraph office. Next up was the phone, but you were still tethered to a line. In fact, you were tethered to an operator who had to place every call. When wireless radio transmission came along, folks thought, “Well, that’s it then. All our communication problems are solved.” Not so fast! Things got better. Way better. In fact, today we can place a call from our cell to anywhere in the world, and it will go through in a flash. Then there are all the Smartphone perks. We’re talking apps. Specifically, the iPoll app. This is an app you can literally use anywhere on the planet, 24/7/365. Translation: you can earn money 24/7/365.
Does art imitate life or does life imitate art? That’s one of those “which comes first, the chicken or the egg?” kind of questions. You can land on either side and you’d be right. One thing is for sure: to review the list of Best Picture films is to review a slice of Americana. Consider any one of these winning films and you can probably remember where you were when you watched it and the effect it had on your life. Isn’t that what the movies do best? Shake us up a little. Let us forget our troubles. Perhaps inspire us to achieve more. At least, that’s how I approach the cinema.
I’m going to go out on a limb here by saying not a lot of readers of this blog are voting members of the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. These would be the 6,000 folks who each year get to vote on the Oscars. According to a survey taken by the Los Angeles Times back in 2012, the current Academy membership is overwhelmingly male (77%) with an average age of 62. Just 14% are under 50. If you’ve ever been nominated, you automatically get to be a member. Otherwise, you have to be invited by a member of the Board of Governors. Bottom line: it’s an exclusive club. Still, the choices for Best Picture can provide a barometer of where we are as a nation in terms of our shared history, culture, and heritage.
According to the accounting firm of Ernst and Young, no one knows who will win Oscar gold until the envelope is opened. Technically, that would make every winner a surprise. Yet the morning after, there are plenty of snarky critics who either will say, “There were no surprises on Oscar night” or “There were big upsets.” Then there are the naysayers who say that so-and-so won their award because of their career, and not the part they played. It’s all Monday morning quarterbacking. Those who win did so because they got the most votes from Academy members. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the Academy members always get things right. In fact, there have been many Oscar snubs over the years which perhaps left you scratching your head asking, “Really, Academy? Really?” You might want to bring a few of these up at your Oscar party to spark some lively conversation.
If you follow this blog, then you were aptly prepared to be the smartest one in the room during your Super Bowl party. We loaded you up with all kinds of factoids to impress the gathering. For those folks who didn’t inherit the football gene and are more artistically inclined, the Oscars are like their Super Bowl. Okay, we’re talking about me. In fact, I always call the Oscars my Super Bowl. Like that big game there is plenty of hype leading up to the big event. Who will win what? Who will wear who? Will Snow White be in the opening number? On “game day” all eyes will be on the red carpet (as opposed to the commercials). Plus, it’s the perfect excuse to throw a party. Once you’ve worked out your Oscar Party Poll Picks, you’ll want to dazzle your fellow partygoers with amazing tidbits. Here is all the Oscar Party trivia you’ll ever need: