For Facebook CEO and President Mark Zuckerberg, life's been good. Since 2003, he's turned a "Hot or Not" website into the world's largest social networking website, revolutionizing the way our generation communicates.
With the Academy Awards just days away and twice as many nominations for Best Picture this year, five more producers are busy penning what may be the most important speech of their lives. But we'll only ever hear one of those heart-wrenching speeches filled with introspection and "Thank you, thank you, thank you!"
In case you didn't get the memo, it's cold out there. Really cold. So cold that, according to AccuWeather, iguanas in Florida are going into hibernation mode and falling off trees (seriously - see for yourself).
The news is in from Copenhagen - the nations of the world have decided yet again to "recognize" climate change without committing to emissions reduction. And just like that, Mother Nature responds as vengefully as she can, by dumping a ridiculous amount of snow on the ground over a weekend.
On Saturday morning at 6:37 a.m., Silver Chips Online's panel of snow experts* dragged themselves out of bed to attend an emergency meeting held in the nation's capital to calculate with their usual astonishing accuracy the probability of school delays and cancellations.
Hector Mauricio Hernandez, 21, was sentenced Thursday to 50 years in prison for his role in a shooting that killed Blair freshman Tai Lam and injured two others. The Nov. 1 incident occurred on a Ride On bus following a verbal exchange between Lam and Hernandez, a documented member of violent street gang MS-13.
Two six-car Red Line Metro trains collided at 5 p.m. on Monday evening at the height of rush hour, resulting in nine fatalities. At least 100 passengers sustained injuries in what transportation officials reported as the deadliest accident in Metro's 33-year history.
Every now and then, an age-old series will need a little something to keep it going. In 2005, Christian Bale and Christopher Nolan resurrected Batman. Daniel Craig electrified the screen in 2006's "Casino Royale," rocketing the 007 franchise back to the top of the box office. Now, J.J. Abrams and an ensemble cast of unknowns accelerate the 60s-era "Star Trek" franchise back to warp speed.
The view from the top of the World Building in Downtown Silver Spring is majestic, even on this drizzly March afternoon. The eyes of the seven men huddled in Studio 8121, however, are far from the windows. As pedestrians below hurry under raincoats and umbrellas, these seven huddle together next to mixing equipment and speakers. One of them sits at a computer, manipulating a nuanced soundwave using complex music editing software.
The course of a presidential legacy is often defined by the actions a president takes in his or her first 100 days of office. These first 100 days, often called "the honeymoon period," are an opportune time for a president to sway the country's policy because of the public and congressional approval granted to a newly elected chief of state.
Following a miraculous comeback victory against Watkins Mill the previous day, the boys' varsity lacrosse team (6-5) was unable to find the same success against the visiting Gaithersburg Trojans (6-2) Thursday night. Hampered by injuries and missing players, the Blazers fell, 8-4.
After digging itself into a two-goal hole early on Wednesday night, the boys' varsity lacrosse team (6-4) pulled a stunning comeback victory against Watkins Mill (3-5), seizing the lead for the first time with less than two minutes remaining for a spectacular 7-6 win.
After a three-game winning streak, the boys' varsity lacrosse team (3-2) was routed Thursday night, falling to the Blake Bengals (2-3) but bitterly fighting to the end in the 9-1 loss.
As the rain fell in sheets Friday night, the boys' lacrosse team seized the opportunity to avenge last season's stinging 2-0 playoff loss to the Springbrook Blue Devils, Blair's traditional rivals. After an initial deficit the Blazers dominated, blowing past Springbrook in a 9-4 win.
After beginning their season with a 16-1 loss at lacrosse-powerhouse Wootton, the Blazers found new life on Monday during their home opener, overpowering the Northwest Jaguars for a decisive 11-6 victory.
On Feb. 4, Facebook, the world's largest social networking site, made a subtle change to its Terms of Service. Previously, Facebook users granted the corporation a license to use content they posted "on or in connection with" the network. The new terms, however, eliminated language stating that the license would automatically expire once a user deleted their account. Anything a user has ever uploaded onto the site could be archived and reused even if a user quits Facebook.
Despite the season's most intense snowfall on March 2, thousands of young people from across the country dressed in layers and huddled together for warmth on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol. They wore green hard hats and carried signs with slogans such as "Yes to Climate Action" and "No More Coal" as they marched towards the coal-burning Capitol Power Plant. This scene was the culminating event of Power Shift 2009, a grassroots environmental summit mobilizing thousands to take a stand on environmental policy.
Invisible Children Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting children involved in the Ugandan civil war, held two screenings of its new documentary, "The Rescue of Joseph Kony's Child Soldiers," in the auditorium during first and third periods Thursday morning. Senior Laura Moya and Students for Global Responsibility (SGR) sponsored the event.
As the final movie gems of 2008 transition to wide release, audiences everywhere turn to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (the Academy, for short) as well as its smaller, more liberal cousin, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) to recognize the greatest movies of 2008. These institutions run two of the film industry's biggest award ceremonies: the Oscars and the Golden Globes, respectively. Nominations for each award are highly coveted and the golden statuettes are supposedly given to nothing less than the best Tinseltown has to offer.
You don't have to be a corporate accountant to know that executives make more money than the rest of us. This is the way it's always been - and in a way, it makes sense: as a person climbs up the corporate ladder, their responsibilities increase dramatically and their salaries should reflect that. Then again, the earnings of corporate executives may reflect their positions a little too well.
Hollywood has a knack for trying to make money off of the latest real-world crises, the theory apparently being that factual adversity makes for timelier, more believable fiction. Now, as hunched-over, defeated banking executives testify about our broken economy before Congress, the studios have brought for our consideration "The International," a faux-intellectual semi-thriller that ditches the time-tested machinations of a human villain for (drumroll…) the evil practices of a big mean bank.
For most Washington teams, it's been a season of heartbreak and disappointment. Amidst this gloomy atmosphere, fans are shifting their support to an unlikely team: the traditionally horrendous Washington Capitals.
Ah, 2009. Right now, it's a clean slate. We here at Silver Chips Online believe that the mistakes of the past year were forgiven when the ball dropped in Times Square on Dec. 31. Forget your past inadequacies. A new year calls for new failings, new insecurities and new missed opportunities.
If you've turned on the radio in the past few years, you're probably familiar with the robotic twang of "T-Pained" vocals. This trademark motif of namesake and Florida R&B crooner T-Pain is caused by Antares Audio Technologies's Auto-Tune plug-in, a program that snaps sour notes into a computerized pattern with a distinctive tremble.
Here's a premise: a comedic British television personality with absolutely no political experience attempts to squeeze confessions out of a disgraced American president in four unprecedented interview sessions. It sounds dull and tedious, more at home in a history class than a movie theater. Yet screenwriter Peter Morgan manages to spin this thin material into "Frost/Nixon," an entertaining and enjoyable work of art.
Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Superintendent Jerry Weast presented his budget proposal for fiscal year (FY) 2010 at the Carver Educational Services Center (CESC) on Dec. 11. The roughly $2.1 billion budget contains no new initiatives and calls for a net increase of 2 percent, or $40.2 million, over FY 2009, less than half of last year's 5.6 percent increase over FY 2008. The MCPS Board of Education will finalize and vote on the budget on Feb. 9.
It's been almost a month since America swept then-Senator Barack Obama into the office of the President-elect. Emphasis on what separated him from his opponents won him initial support: his proponents emphasized the fact that he was the only candidate that, for example, didn't support the invasion of Iraq, to the chagrin of his main Democratic rival, Senator Hillary Clinton. As Obama prepares to take the reins from his universally despised predecessor, he is continuing to emphasize his unique opinions - this time with the actual institutional power to make decisions that move towards change.
From the outside, it seems like a normal late Thursday night at the Majestic 20 in Downtown Silver Spring. It's past 11 p.m. on Nov. 20 and the box office line is almost nonexistent. But a journey up the escalator towards the theaters reveals hordes of energetic, talkative teens donning collector's jewelry from Hot Topic and promotional t-shirts emblazoned with images of black book covers or a pale-white vampire with glowing golden eyes.
On Nov. 4, President-elect Barack Obama made history, defeating his opponent, Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.), in an electoral landslide to become the nation's first black president. Voters also elected a solid majority of Democrats in both houses of Congress. Now that Democrats possess control of both the legislative and executive branches of the federal government for the first time since 1992, what lies in America's political future?
On Nov. 4, voters nationwide will gather at the polls to elect the next President of the United States. Whomever the voters choose will have a massive economic crisis to settle. Banks and mortgage companies are failing left and right, sending real estate prices tumbling. Revenue generated by property taxes has decreased as well, leaving public schools, which derive their financial support from property taxes, in a fiscal quandary. Maryland as a whole is suffering from this crisis as well, as the State Legislature's fiscal advisers are predicting an over-$1 billion budget shortfall for the coming fiscal year.
Everybody has certain things they feel very strongly about. Harry Potter, correct grammar, Blair football... fixations also extend into more serious fields such as political issues and social causes and can be perfectly healthy expressions of personal opinion. If left unchecked, however, they morph into obsessions that negatively affect us all.
In a 7-2 vote on Oct. 14, the County Council formally approved the transfer of the historic J.C. Penney facade on Colesville Road from current owner Lee Development Group (LDG) to county control. The land will be used to build the Fillmore concert hall, Downtown Silver Spring's first major live performance venue.
Ever since the beginning of the Iraq War, Hollywood has been searching for ways to profit from Middle East turmoil with rather limited success. Warner Bros., the latest studio to jump on the bandwagon, brings together superstars Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crowe in "Body of Lies," the eponymous film adaptation of David Igantius's 2007 bestseller. Unfortunately for audiences, the movie is low on action and heavy on meaningless dialogue.
School systems across the country are taking a financial beating this year. Energy costs are skyrocketing. Diminishing property values have significantly reduced the amount of funding available to public schools, which draw most of their funding from property taxes. Amidst this turbulent economic atmosphere, schools are frantically searching for new ways to save money. Instead of laying off staff or cutting back on academic programs, a growing number of schools are considering a four-day school week.
Take a convoluted storyline, mix it with a disappointing supporting cast, uninspired cinematic direction and questionable production quality - the result is a film that exudes the pungent stench of "done before." Then, throw in two of cinema's most critically acclaimed actors: Robert de Niro ("Raging Bull," "Taxi Driver") and Al Pacino ("The Godfather," "Scarface") in their first collaboration in 13 years. The result: "Righteous Kill," a testament to wasted potential.
In a summer drowning in light-hearted, comedic superhero blockbusters - think smash hits such as "Iron Man" and "Hancock" - "The Dark Knight" provides a welcome respite from cheerful brightness. Director Christopher Nolan creates an intensely dark and dramatic film that places a menacing spin upon the Batman franchise and its most enduring villain: the Joker.
The College Board – makers of the SAT Reasoning Test required for entrance by colleges across the nation – announced a policy change in June. Starting with the class of 2010, students can now choose to only show certain test scores to schools, with the ability to hide attempts that resulted in low grades. Colleges now won't know whether a score was earned in one try or six. Before the cheering begins, however, look at the other side of the coin. Although this change is a stress reliever for many, its repercussions, as well as the College Board's motives, are far more sinister.
The cost of Blair's graduation ceremonies is projected to more than double this year, a burden that could prevent the rising senior class and future classes from graduating at the University of Maryland College Park's Comcast Center. Initial county estimates, outlined in a memo by the Office of School Performance, project that commencement at the Comcast Center for the class of 2009 will cost Blair $13,000.
Junior Chloe Sheridan's "Twilight"-themed wardrobe includes an official "Twilight" t-shirt and "Twilight" jewelry.
Meet your friend Luna, the SCO teaching unicorn! :D
Senior co-captain Mike Mozer races past a defender on the way to one of his five goals during the Blazers' 11-6 win over Northwest.
The Echo Boom in-studio mastering their album.
Junior Chloe Sheridan's "Twilight"-themed wardrobe includes an official "Twilight" t-shirt and "Twilight" jewelry.