Tuesday, 25 February 2014

I Regret Not Winning CAF Player Of The Year Award – Okocha

http://static.goal.com/186500/186576_heroa.jpgNigerian football legend Jay Jay Okocha has revealed that one of his big regrets was a failure to win the coveted CAF Player of the Year prize. Okocha famously finished as runner-up in 1998 and 2004 behind Mustapha Hadji and Samuel Eto’o despite being favourite to win the award on both occasions and the 1994 African champion has revealed getting recognition from many other quarters made up for missing out on the coveted prize.

Speaking at a fans interaction forum hosted by Western Union as part of their activities as Global Partners of the Europa League, Okocha said: “I definitely regret not winning the CAF Player of the Year award. I hoped to win while I was a professional but thing don’t always go your way. My source of pride, regardless of what happened with CAF, is that I got awards and recognition from others asides CAF.”

Ever so modest, Okocha also hinted that the reason for his failure to win the award was probably the plethora of quality footballers in his generation. “My generation had a lot of great footballers and the competition was very high. I feel privileged to have played in the same period as some of these greats and if I did not win the award, it is because someone else did,” Okocha said. “Saying I don’t regret not winning the CAF Player of the Year award will be a lie but a bigger regret is that I cannot come out of retirement to try again!” he joked.

Jay Jay Okocha was speaking at a fans’ interaction forum hosted by Western Union, Global Partners of the Europa League, in Frankfurt.

BlackBerry Set To Launch Two Phones This Year, 'Q20 and Z3 '


Blackberry is set to launch two new phones this year, John Chen, the CEO confirmed

The first, codenamed "Jakarta," but known as the BlackBerry Z3 will launch first in Indonesia in April before moving to other markets. It will retail for less than $200.

The second phone, the BlackBerry Q20 (which Chen dubbed "BlackBerry Classic" because of its keyboard) is designed for big business and government clients and will launch by the end of the year. It was also designed by Foxconn.

Here is his statement:
"We are definitely here to compete and make up some lost ground," Chen said during a press conference here on Tuesday.

Man puts girlfriend up for sale on ebay where 56 people bid on her

A man who was fed up with his girlfriend’s lazy ways, put her up for sale on ebay.

Shaun Coles of the United Kingdom, posted a photo of his long term girlfriend, Debbie Moran, on ebay. Coles of Kettering, Northamptonshire, placed Moran up for sale on the auction website, and was surprised to have received 56 bid from strangers.

Coles described his girlfriend of 6 years as an "old woman" who slacks in her housework. He posted unflattering photos of his girlfriend, showing her sitting on a couch with garbage and other stuff lying around.

The listing was eventually removed as it was against ebay’s policies.

The highest bid before the post was removed was £721 (about $1,181.00). Moran said that at first, she was upset and she did not like what he did, but she believed him when he said that it was done as a joke.

Coles said that he loves his girlfriend and wouldn’t sell her for anything.

Moran replied: “he is trying to redeem himself.”

Source: YJnews

This Is How You Know You've Found 'The One'

"How do you know you've found the one?" young friends ask me.

"Does your boyfriend make you happy?" I ask. "Does being around him boost your sense of well being? Does he help you be the best you can be?"

Funny that I can be a love advisor when more than 30 years ago I almost said no to love.

In movies, love hits like a freight train in a cathedral: hard, fast and unexpected. But for me, love was a slow simmer that over time came to a full boil. It has continued to simmer and enrich its flavors ever since.

A first impression deferred

My first date with my now husband was a blind one -- or almost blind. Craig and I went to the same small suburban private high school. We appeared together in two school plays. But more than a decade after I graduated high school, when Craig called to ask me out, I didn't even remember he existed.

My first impulse was to say no. I had given up on matches arranged by well-meaning relatives and friends -- a date who had the hiccups for 48 hours, another who arrived with his macrobiotic meal in a brown bag, and a third who carried his leftovers, a container of garlicky shrimp lo mein with the noodles dripping off the side, to a downtown movie on a hot summer night.

Thankfully, instead of saying no, I looked Craig up in my high school yearbook. In all the photos I found he had a knit cap glued to his head that made him look a little goofy. Yet I couldn't deny his handsome face. I said yes.

When we met in person, he got my attention by letting me know that he'd had a crush on me ever since high school. Whether it's true or not I'll never know. On our second date, he almost sent me running when he told me that he thought he was going to marry me.

I was attracted, but I resisted; he wasn't totally how I envisioned my dream guy. He was smart and funny. He had great hair and a sexy deep voice, kind of like soul singer Barry White. But he also had a paunch, and his attire was nerdy: sandals, a t-shirt and the same pair of gold pants I soon discovered he wore at every date. And he was in his late twenties and still figuring out what he wanted to do.

My real reason for hesitating was that, though I yearned to find my soul mate, I feared replicating my parents' less-than-ideal union. But I couldn't deny that Craig and I effortlessly connected: talking, joking and laughing. We both were obsessed with learning new things, new words, new concepts. We fully embraced anything we explored, from biking to family history. And we loved going to inexpensive authentic ethnic restaurants and taking in all the culture we could -- plays, movies and books.

I took pleasure in the way he surprised me -- with a made-up poem in the middle of an otherwise silent moonlit hike. Or by playing Tangerine Dream's music from "Risky Business" in the car when he picked me up, music I once casually mentioned I liked.

All's well that ends well

After a year and a half of dating, when my landlord and his wife (who lived in the same building and acted like my second set of parents) went on vacation, Craig came to stay at my apartment for a week as a trial run. He was smart enough to know he had to reel me in slowly. A week turned into two and then three. Soon it was clear that he was never going to leave, and I didn't want him to.

Sharing my life with Craig has amplified the joy and made the difficult times easier -- except for when I worked as bookkeeper for Craig's computer networking business. We'd crabbily peer at spreadsheets together -- we both hated accounting -- and the misery of the numbers invaded our marriage. To this day he says he fired me. I say I quit.

But our love remains strong. Last year I had major surgery and relied on Craig for months. His loving round-the-clock care, emotional support and cooking of all my favorite foods, from kasha and varnishkes to spaghetti and clams, brought me back to life.

So how do you know when you've found the right one? If you pay attention, you'll know, even if you're a little dense about it at first like me.

Now at night we have what we call "The Best Time," when we cuddle, laugh and talk after the lights are out. I tease him, "Let's pretend it's our first date and this time I won't be so slow to realize how much I love you; I'll just jump your bones." He laughs and pulls me toward him.

This essay first appeared in www.Newsworks.org

Mercy Johnson smiles to the bank; now Nollywood's highest paid actress

http://www.highstreetmail.com/media/k2/items/cache/e4757061d0a81c841d766c26789632da_L.jpgMercy Johnson is Nigeria’s busiest actress in Nigeria, it has been reported.

According to a report by Nigeria's Yes International Magazine, the Kogi-State-born movie star, is also one of the richest actresses in the country, pocketing between Gh₵23,000 and Gh₵30,000 per movie.

Mercy is said to be in such high demand that movie producers queue up to secure her services, sometimes paying her upfront.

“The situation has been like that for some time now. Even when she was pregnant, she was still working non-stop, including shooting a movie in the United States of America with her bulging tummy.

As a matter of fact, the producers were so desperate that they started writing scripts to align with her pregnancy”, Yes Magazine quoted a source as saying.

Among Mercy’s latest works are: Obioma The Slave Girl, Sleeping Walker, Heart of A Twin 1 & 2, Mud of Hardship, Dumebi and Bitterleaf Cyhtia, Others are Daniella, First Experience, Endless Agony, Immaculate Heart, Painful Soul, Tears of Madness, Weeping Kingdom, Troubled King, and Baby Oku in America.

The rest are Dumebi in School, Somma The Local Champion, Ebute The Only Girl, Leave My Tears 1 & 2, Mary The Hunter, Cry of A Widow, Voice of A Mother.

Do you think Mercy is the best actress in Nollywood?



VIDEO: 3 University of Ghana Girls humiliated for allegedly stealing panties ($10) at Accra Mall.


Three ladies said to be students of the University of Ghana were subjected to a disgraceful ordeal after they were alleged to have stolen panties which cost Gh25 ($10) at the Accra Mall.

http://www.highstreetmail.com/media/k2/items/cache/513e0f46a15d90bea9c2968c604895d6_L.jpg One of the biggest and very popular shopping malls in the country, the mall is always filled with to the brim making it very distasteful for the girls who were made to crawl on their knees while excited on-lookers filmed the humiliation.
The rights of the young ladies were not respected as they were handed down 'instant justice' so they wont be reported to the police.

It is shocking that for a refined market place like the Accra Shopping Mall, managers would allow such abuse to go unchecked.

WATCH VIDEO HERE: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saqzy0XlcuM

What motivates us at work? 7 fascinating studies that give insights


“When we think about how people work, the na├»ve intuition we have is that people are like rats in a maze,” says behavioral economist Dan Ariely in today’s talk, given at TEDxRiodelaPlata. “We really have this incredibly simplistic view of why people work and what the labor market looks like.”
When you look carefully at the way people work, he says, you find out there’s a lot more at play—and a lot more at stake—than money. In his talk, Ariely provides evidence that we are also driven by meaningful work, by others’ acknowledgement and by the amount of effort we’ve put in: the harder the task is, the prouder we are.
During the Industrial Revolution, Ariely points out, Adam Smith’s efficiency-oriented, assembly-line approach made sense. But it doesn’t work as well in today’s knowledge economy. Instead, Ariely upholds Karl Marx’s concept that we care much more about a product if we’ve participated from start to finish rather than producing a single part over and over. In other words, in the knowledge economy, efficiency is no longer more important than meaning.
“When we think about labor, we usually think about motivation and payment as the same thing, but the reality is that we should probably add all kinds of things to it: meaning, creation, challenges, ownership, identity, pride, etc.,” Ariely explains.
To hear more on Ariely’s thoughts about what makes people more productive – and happier – at work, watch this fascinating talk. Below, a look at some of Ariely’s studies, as well as a few from other researchers, with interesting implications for what makes us feel good about our work.
  1. Seeing the fruits of our labor may make us more productive
    The Study: In a study conducted at Harvard University, Ariely asked participants to build characters from Lego’s Bionicles series. In both conditions, participants were paid decreasing amounts for each subsequent Bionicle: $3 for the first one, $2.70 for the next one, and so on. But while one group’s creations were stored under the table, to be disassembled at the end of the experiment, the other group’s Bionicles were disassembled as soon as they’d been built. “This was an endless cycle of them building and we destroying in front of their eyes,” Ariely says.
    The Results: The first group made 11 Bionicles, on average, while the second group made only seven before they quit.
    The Upshot: Even though there wasn’t huge meaning at stake, and even though the first group knew their work would be destroyed at the end of the experiment, seeing the results of their labor for even a short time was enough to dramatically improve performance.
  2. The less appreciated we feel our work is, the more money we want to do it
    The Study: Ariely gave study participants — students at MIT — a piece of paper filled with random letters, and asked them to find pairs of identical letters. Each round, they were offered less money than the previous round. People in the first group wrote their names on their sheets and handed them to the experimenter, who looked it over and said “Uh huh” before putting it in a pile. People in the second group didn’t write down their names, and the experimenter put their sheets in a pile without looking at them. People in the third group had their work shredded immediately upon completion.
    The Results: People whose work was shredded needed twice as much money as those whose work was acknowledged in order to keep doing the task. People in the second group, whose work was saved but ignored, needed almost as much money as people whose work was shredded.
    The Upshot: “Ignoring the performance of people is almost as bad as shredding their effort before their eyes,” Ariely says. “The good news is that adding motivation doesn’t seem to be so difficult. The bad news is that eliminating motivation seems to be incredibly easy, and if we don’t think about it carefully, we might overdo it.”
  3. The harder a project is, the prouder we feel of it
    The Study: In another study, Ariely gave origami novices paper and instructions to build a (pretty ugly) form. Those who did the origami project, as well as bystanders, were asked at the end how much they’d pay for the product. In a second trial, Ariely hid the instructions from some participants, resulting in a harder process — and an uglier product.
    The Results: In the first experiment, the builders paid five times as much as those who just evaluated the product. In the second experiment, the lack of instructions exaggerated this difference: builders valued the ugly-but-difficult products even more highly than the easier, prettier ones, while observers valued them even less.
    The Upshot: Our valuation of our own work is directly tied to the effort we’ve expended. (Plus, we erroneously think that other people will ascribe the same value to our own work as we do.)
  4. Knowing that our work helps others may increase our unconscious motivation
    The Study: As described in a recent New York Times Magazine profile, psychologist Adam Grant led a study at a University of Michigan fundraising call center in which  student who had benefited from the center’s scholarship fundraising efforts spoke to the callers for 10 minutes.
    The Results: A month later, the callers were spending 142 percent more time on the phone than before, and revenues had increased by 171 percent, according to the Times. But the callers denied the scholarship students’ visit had impacted them.
    The Upshot: “It was almost as if the good feelings had bypassed the callers’ conscious cognitive processes and gone straight to a more subconscious source of motivation,” the Times reports. “They were more driven to succeed, even if they could not pinpoint the trigger for that drive.”
  5. The promise of helping others makes us more likely to follow rules
    The Study: Grant ran another study (also described in the Times profile) in which he put up signs at a hospital’s hand-washing stations, reading either “Hand hygiene prevents you from catching diseases” or “Hand hygiene prevents patients from catching diseases.”
    The Results: Doctors and nurses used 45 percent more soap or hand sanitizer in the stations with signs that mentioned patients.
    The Upshot: Helping others through what’s called “prosocial behavior” motivates us.
  6. Positive reinforcement about our abilities may increase performance
    The Study: Undergraduates at Harvard University gave speeches and did mock interviews with experimenters who were either nodding and smiling or shaking their heads, furrowing their eyebrows, and crossing their arms.
    The Results: The participants in the first group later answered a series of numerical questions more accurately than those in the second group.
    The Upshot: Stressful situations can be manageable—it all depends on how we feel. We find ourselves in a “challenge state” when we think we can handle the task (as the first group did); when we’re in a “threat state,” on the other hand, the difficulty of the task is overwhelming, and we become discouraged. We’re more motivated and perform better in a challenge state, when we have confidence in our abilities.
  7. Images that trigger positive emotions may actually help us focus
    The Study: Researchers at Hiroshima University had university students perform a dexterity task before and after looking at pictures of either baby or adult animals.
    The Results: Performance improved in both cases, but more so (10 percent improvement!) when participants looked at the cute pictures of puppies and kittens.
    The Upshot: The researchers suggest that “the cuteness-triggered positive emotion” helps us narrow our focus, upping our performance on a task that requires close attention. Yes, this study may just validate your baby panda obsession.
What have you noticed makes you work harder – and better?

Source: http://blog.ted.com/2013/04/10/what-motivates-us-at-work-7-fascinating-studies-that-give-insights/

Mozilla plans '$25 smartphone' for emerging markets

http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/73172000/jpg/_73172351_73170162.jpgMozilla has shown off a prototype for a $25 (£15) smartphone that is aimed at the developing world.

The company, which is famed mostly for its Firefox browser, has partnered with Chinese low-cost chip maker Spreadtrum.

While not as powerful as more expensive models, the device will run apps and make use of mobile internet.

It would appeal to the sorts of people who currently buy cheap "feature" phones, analysts said.

Feature phones are highly popular in the developing world as a halfway point between "dumb" phones - just voice calls and other basic functions - and fully-fledged smartphones.

Mozilla hopes that it will capture an early lead in a market that is now being targeted by mobile device manufacturers who see the developing world as the remaining area for massive growth.
It will face stern competition from bigger, more established brands, however - with more announcements of this kind expected over the course of the next couple of days at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

"These solutions expand the global accessibility of open web smartphones to first-time and entry-level smartphone buyers by reducing the time and cost required for handset makers to bring these devices to market," said Spreadtrum in a press statement.

Mozilla said the phone "redefines" the entry-level phone market.

The concept of a cheap smartphone may seem likely to appeal to consumers in developed countries, particularly those who locked into long contracts in order to subsidise the cost of the likes of the Apple iPhone and Samsung Galaxy range.

But analyst Carolina Milanesi, from Kantar Worldpanel, said it should not be seen as a competitor.

Mozilla also announced new high-end smartphones

"You're not really talking about smartphone experience.

"You're talking about a clumsy smartphone that's a little bit better than a feature phone - still primarily for voice and text."

The phone runs Mozilla's own mobile operating system - something that could cause problems as competition in the cheap smartphone market steps up, Ms Milanesi added.

In addition to the $25 smartphone, Mozilla also launched several high-end models, including devices from Huawei and ZTE.

Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-26316265

The British Museum Must Return Africa’s Stolen Treasures

Stolen African artifacts on display in the British Museum
AFRICANGLOBE – ON SHOW: Ivory mask, probably 16th century AD, is on view at the British Museum

Interesting to see that movie star George Clooney is demanding that the famed Elgin Marbles should be returned to Greece from whence they were plundered. It’s not surprising that the star is making his views known in this way because, after all, he’s vocally political and what he says carries clout. I doubt very much, though, whether even his star appeal can convince the British Museum to give up its illicitly appropriated treasures.

Despite Clooney’s efforts I couldn’t help thinking, ‘George, what about the Benin Mask and any number of other artefacts that were pillaged from the African continent?

Come to think of it, why are none of those top Black movie stars that we are praising left, right and centre, not demanding the return of Africa’s treasures that were robbed by the British criminals?

The British Museum is no more than a thieves’ kitchen of plundered African history and treasures and a continual colonial power over African culture. That is our history you see there in the museum. That is our culture. Is it any wonder that Africa is the state it is in when our history and culture is on display thousands of miles away in the centre of London?

But I don’t even blame the British Museum for hanging on to it. There has been no concerted effort beyond African countries begging to have their artefacts returned, but who is going to give a profile to the Nigerian government’s requests. If some of those big stars of Hollywood were to get together and demand the return of African history to where it rightfully belongs (and don’t forget these artefacts were pilfered, robbed, stolen) we could see some action.

When he wins his Oscar next week Chiwetel Ejiofor needs to stand up on the podium and demand that those artefacts are returned. I know he will have to thank quite a few people and, of course, his mum too for all her support. But after that, Chiwitel, why not demand that the British Museum gives our people back what is rightfully ours?

And not just Chiwetel alone. It would be good if we could hear the likes of Will Smith, Samuel L. Jackson, Oprah Winfrey and all the top supes from Hollywood stand up strong and demand the return of those artefacts. It could trigger a worldwide movement the like of which even the British Museum would have to bow to. We should be picketing outside the museum and African governments should be funding groups over here to stage sit-ins and the like in the museum until it relents and returns our history that was robbed.

By: Dotun Adebayo