Lego Slithers Into Digital Age With Biting Robot Serpent

Lego Slithers Into Digital Age With Biting Robot Serpent

Lego fans no longer need to fret about the cat or dog knocking over their constructions. When bothersome housepets or other pests come too close, they can ward off the intruder with one of their plastic-brick creations. The R3PTAR, a robotic snake from Lego A/S, can be programmed from a smartphone app to attack felines, canines, and siblings — or simply scuttle along the floor and give them something to chase. Equipped with a snapping mechanical jaw and fangs, the serpent might just send even courageous hounds, pusses and pesky kid brothers packing.

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Cheung Kong Losing Luster for Billionaire Li: Chart of the Day

Cheung Kong Losing Luster for Billionaire Li: Chart of the Day

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Li Ka-shing is buying the fewest shares of his flagship Cheung Kong Holdings Ltd. in at least eight years as he considers selling assets in Hong Kong, the city that helped make him Asia’s richest person. The CHART OF THE DAY tracks Li’s monthly purchases in the company he founded against the stock’s weekly performance since June 2005. The 85-year-old, nicknamed “Superman” by the local media for his investing acumen, bought HK$28.3 million ($3.6 million) of shares since September 2012. That’s the smallest amount for any 12-month period since at least 2005, according to filings with the city’s stock exchange. Read more of this post

Brand-hungry LVMH seeks new niche as Vuitton flags

Brand-hungry LVMH seeks new niche as Vuitton flags

5:07am EDT

By Astrid Wendlandt and Pascale Denis

PARIS (Reuters) – Neverfull – the name of Louis Vuitton’s best-selling handbag – sums up well its parent LVMH: even if it snapped up all of the world’s last remaining independent luxury brands, it would still have room for more. The French group’s insatiable appetite for acquisitions has been tolerated by investors while its cash cow Louis Vuitton, which contributes half of group profit, grew revenues at a rate of more than 10 percent in the past two decades. Read more of this post

Supreme Owner Made a Billionaire Feeding U.S. War Machine

Supreme Owner Made a Billionaire Feeding U.S. War Machine

Chemical warfare and car bombings are just a few of the hazards working in war-torn countries such as Iraq and Syria. For Supreme Group BV, it’s the cost of doing business. Dubai-based Supreme delivers fuel and food — 100,000 meals a day — to troops stationed in some of the most inhospitable parts of the world, including Liberia, Mali and Sudan. The perilous business, where contractors dodge bullets fired by the Taliban and explosives set by insurgents, has made the company’s majority owner, Stephen Orenstein, a billionaire. “Our mantra is to provide the same quality of service in Rwanda or Somalia as we do for restaurant chains in Germany,” Orenstein, 49, said in a phone interview from his office in Dubai. “We took a developed world standard and brought it to the developing world.” Read more of this post

Just what is in that chicken nugget? Stand-up comedians have long joked that some things, like the actual components of chicken nuggets, are better left mysterious

Just what is in that chicken nugget?

Fri, Oct 4 2013

By Kathryn Doyle

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – Stand-up comedians have long joked that some things, like the actual components of chicken nuggets, are better left mysterious. Recently, Mississippi researchers found out why: two nuggets they examined consisted of 50 percent or less chicken muscle tissue, the breast or thigh meat that comes to mind when a customer thinks of “chicken.” The nuggets came from two national fast food chains in Jackson. The three researchers selected one nugget from each box, preserved, dissected and stained the nuggets, then looked at them under a microscope. Read more of this post

Pearson Drops as Investors Call for Faster Drive to Digital

Pearson Drops as Investors Call for Faster Drive to Digital

Pearson Plc (PSON) shares have lagged behind peers since hitting a 12-year high in July as a restructuring at the publisher of everything from textbooks to Tom Clancy’s thrillers failed to convince investors of its digital strategy. The owner of the Financial Times newspaper has dropped 9 percent since the end of July, when it reported sales that topped analysts’ estimates. While the stock is up 4.3 percent this year in London trading, it’s the worst performer in the 48-company Bloomberg World Media Index. Reed Elsevier NV jumped 30 percent and Wolters Kluwer NV (WKL) climbed almost 25 percent. Read more of this post

London Cash Buyers Send Banks North to Riskier Loans

London Cash Buyers Send Banks North to Riskier Loans

The risky loans that helped cause the U.K.’s real-estate crash are making a comeback as cash buyers from abroad limit lending opportunities in London and banks instead venture into the weakest markets. Five years after Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and Lloyds Banking Group Plc (LLOY), the U.K.’s biggest mortgage lender, were bailed out by the government, the number of mortgages with down payments of 15 percent or less rose almost 50 percent in August from a year earlier. In London, where prices are rising fastest, only 1 in 25 borrowers took out a low down payment loan. In the north of England, the country’s most-volatile housing market, it’s about one in five, according to property appraisal firm e.surv Ltd. Read more of this post

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