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Jimmy Buzz, the loopy marionette from Top Streaming

Who's who - February 15, 2017

Jimmy Buzz broke the TV host mold. Contrary to Alicia Fall, his co-host on Top Streaming sur Cstar, he’s all peps and flex. “Jimmy’s the epitome of the TV host. He’s cheeky, charming, and cheerful,” declared Christophe Albertini in Le Parisien, May 2015.

Yes, Jimmy and Christophe are one and the same, the latter is Jimmy’s puppetier. Christophe Albertini appears on the French satirical show Les Guignols and The Muppet Show.

The show is a review of the week’s best streaming moments, dissected with a mix of humor and gravitas. Jimmy Buzz knows a thing or two about off-beat interviewing. His chat with French afro trap phenom MHD, is a gem!

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Jimmy Buzz, the marionette who’s shaking up music streaming, with rapper MHD © CStar

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Florence Omagbemi, coach of Nigeria’s unstoppable women’s eleven

Who's who - February 08, 2017

Nigeria has always been a football powerhouse. But when it comes to women’s football, Nigeria is THE powerhouse. Of the 12 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations since the event’s inception in 1991, Nigeria has won 10 of them. Their dominance is due in large part to Florence Omagbemi, both as a player and now coach.

Two months ago she brought home another title, as Nigeria bested Cameroon in the final. “Going into this thing, my goal wasn’t to make personal history but to advance women’s football in Nigeria,” she declared with modesty to the local press after her team’s victory. Florence Omagbemi for president!

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Florence Omagbemi’s game face © africapresse.com

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Warren Ellis, the eccentric writer who gave us Transmetropolitan

Who's who - February 01, 2017

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Warren Ellis, maestro of cyberpunk comics © J. Longo

Literature and cinema are ideal media for science-fiction, but author Warren Ellis discovered another vehicle that’s perfect for sci-fi: comics. Of all his books, Transmetropolitan is his crowning achievement. Throughout the 60 issues published from 1997 to 2002, gonzo journalist Spider Jerusalem, avatar of the one-and-only Hunter S. Thompson, chronicles the myriad abuses of power in his futuristic postcyberpunk city. Injustice and corruption flourish in a city drowning in information pollution, personalized advertisements, floating road signs and wall-sized screens. It’s a vision of sensory overload that looks a lot like Beijing, Tokyo, New York, Stockholm, and Shanghai… And Warren Ellis saw it coming, 20 years ago.

He made plenty of other predictions, too. In an issue published in 1997, Spider Jerusalem even wrote an article by using a series of tweets. His signature colored glasses have a built-in camera, so he can film and photograph whatever he’s looking at. He’s got a 3-D printer at his pad for making whatever the wily reporter needs.

Our intrepid reporter rubs shoulders with humanoids, robots, mutants, and humans endowed with enhanced technologies. Transmetropolitan is the vision of a cloud-based society where transhumanism and cryonics are the new normal, where science-fiction is reality: a reality that now faces scientists and citizens alike.

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Regina Dugan, the DARPA alum who nudged Google into research

Who's who - January 25, 2017

Basically, if it weren’t for Regina Dugan, Google may never have even gotten into research and development. It’s not a stretch to say that this New Yorker is one of the Web’s key historical figures. This science whiz joined DARPA (US defense project launched in 1958 that was the Web’s precursor) and became its first woman director, then headed over to Google in 2012 where she then set up Google ATAP (Advanced Technology and Projects), the lab responsible for many of Google’s innovations.

Regina’s the Queen of Google tech: we have her to thank for most of their ground-breaking inventions. Regularly head-hunted, she wound up at Facebook last year. Zuck knows a thing or two about talent-scouting brainy women!

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Google’s Regina Dugan, innovation is her game © Virginia Tech University

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Tim Urban, the author and procrastinator Musk has taken a shine to

Who's who - January 18, 2017

Tim Urban, an expert in the fine art of procrastination:

The site Wait But Why, cofounded by American Tim Urban, offers long articles, sometimes whimsical, sometimes tongue-in-cheek, on subjects like artificial intelligence, exploration of deep space, and his most disruptive inventions (the ones that change the world)… Another of his favs is procrastination, the art (or compulsion) of putting off until tomorrow what you could do today. He’s even given a TED talk on it.

So what does Elon Musk see in Tim Urban? Certainly not procrastination. Musk probably doesn’t even know the word. In addition to being one of the 4 people Musk follows on Twitter (of his total 38 subscriptions), Tim Urban is a sort-of conscience the engineer/entrepreneur has hired to assess his projects and companies – an ethical mirror. His 4 articles (complete with analyses, interviews, illustrations, videos, and plenty of rapier wit) are a useful warning light for Musk, keeping his projects on the straight and narrow.

  1. Article 1 introduces you to Elon Musk, the man, his background, his ambitions and his conception of Humanity.
  2. Article 2 is all about how Tesla is going to revolutionize the world.
  3. In Article 3, Tim Urban zooms in on Elon Musk’s most ambitious project, the colonization of Mars.
  4. Finally in Article 4 the author elucidates Musk’s method, deepest motivations, and the nuts and bolts of guiding projects and running companies.

Everything you ever wanted to know about Elon Musk, and more.

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Casey Hudson, the man who designed the aliens in Mass Effect

Who's who - January 11, 2017

Huge or little, hideous or sexy, humanoid or cosmic exotic, the space folk dreamed up by Casey Hudson are a pretty diverse crowd.

This artist and his Canadian studio BioWare have created an unbelievable number of space creatures to people its hit video game Mass Effect, the last episode of which, Andromeda, is slated for release in late March. In far-flung galaxies, Casey Hudson’s legions of bizarre creatures live on planets that humans dream of colonizing. The local space freaks aren’t about to roll out the welcome wagon for the invading earthlings, so this invasion won’t be a walk in the park.

Worse, the aliens outnumber the invading humans. May need some energy drinks for this one!

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© Casey Hudson dreaming up aliens

ELSEWHERE ON ORANGE POP

Who’s who: Syd Mead, the king of retro-futuristic design

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Olivier Kmia films earth with the help of his drones

Who's who - January 04, 2017

Miami, Denver, Buenos Aires, New York, Dubai, Hong Kong, Rio de Janeiro… Oliver Kmia, American videographer and aerial film specialist, has captured all these cities with his ultra-sophisticated kit.

The result is as impressive as it is beautiful. The director, his crack mechanics, and the drones he’s dubbed Team Black Sheep, filmed the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the tallest building ever built (828 meters). His footage from airborne cameras zipping among skyscrapers or skimming the coast of Puerto Rico and Lake Tahoe (US) not to mention his time-lapse videos of Miami’s famous glitz and glitterati.

His films offer an alternative vision of earth, and through his lens cities can appear microscopic or gigantic. His perceptive eye reveals the diversity and beauty of the everyday and the spectacular, alighting on a detail, taking in a landscape that only an aerial viewpoint offers. Oliver Kmia has the knack for making the familiar brand new!

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A man and a woman destined to clash

Who's who - December 28, 2016

Time magazine names Donald Trump its “Person of the Year”

No other publication but Time could presume to award the honor “Person of the Year”, as it’s done annually since 1927. This year the prestigious weekly has selected American billionaire and president-elect Donald Trump, whose mug adorns the year-end issue. Fond as ever of irony and wit, the magazine calls him, ”The President of The Disunited States of America”, because as the editor-in-chief points out, “So, will he be the best or the worst? The challenge for Donald Trump is a country deeply divided by the answer to that question”.

In the long portrait piece published on Time’s website the freshly elected president responds via video, modestly affirming that he doesn’t need “Beyoncé, Jay Z and Bruce Springsteen to turn out a crowd. Me and my ideas are all people want to hear.” (meaning, “contrary to Hillary Clinton, who trots them out for rallies.”). The future will tell…

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Time cover for the 18 December issue © Nadav Kander for TIME.

Madonna is Billboard’s 2016 Woman of the Year

A few days later, Billboard magazine named Madonna its 2016 “Woman of the Year” 2016. She used her reception speech at the Billboard’s Women in Music ceremony on 9 December to blast Donald Trump, branding him a misogynist and racist whose business MO is harassment and denigration. At the age of 58 years, the “Queen of the Pop” isn’t about to leave the stage, or abandon her role of championing women’s causes! A great moment is pop history:

 

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Tom Fletcher, the young adult lit author shakes up the list of Xmas classics, sowing mirth worldwide

Who's who - December 21, 2016

Former singer/songwriter for the English group McFly, a band that had a nice run of success, Tom Fletcher was a total novice when he waded into the world of children’s books in 2012. He wrote the best-selling children’s book “The Dinosaur That Pooped Christmas” with another McFly alum, his friend Dougie Poynter. The book sold 72,000 copies, combining a funny ginormous dinosaur with a lot of Xmas kitsch.

The two friends did the voiceover for the video and digital versions themselves. It’s a kitschy, fun, fan-fest you don’t want to miss!

They followed up on their phenomenal success with more great tales on the twin theme of thunder lizards and scatology, and in October, Fletcher started writing his first young adult lit title: “The Christmasaurus. It’s the story of the zany adventures of young William Trundle on Xmas Eve. Hot off the presses, the book seems to have already caught Hollywood’s eye. Makes sense: Xmas and dinosaurs are kids’ two favorite things!

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Franck and Kim Kuhn, champs of the 2015 Great Christmas Light Fight

Who's who - December 14, 2016

Some take Christmas decorations more seriously than others. For the last three years, the American channel ABC has aired the show ‘The Great Christmas Light Fight, showcasing and discerning prizes to the most festive homes in the United States. One couple, from Saint George, Utah, decided to turn their house into a castle festooned with cartoon characters. The result is pretty impressive – turrets, ramparts, and even a drawbridge overrun by cartoon characters from the show “Phineas and Ferb”.

This spectacular deco extravaganza reached epic proportions on 7 December 2015, when they lighted all 500,000 bulbs to the blaring strains of the “Kuhns’ Christmas Spectacular” song. And with that, they secured the Grand Prize for the 2015 ‘Great Christmas Light Fight‘, pocketing a tidy $50,000 and the show’s famous trophy. The 2016 challenge started on 5 December. Get your sunglasses out!

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