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Monday, February 9, 2015

Iconic designer Diane Von Furstenburg calls PHL paradise

Top fashion designer Diane Von Furstenberg of the iconic wrap dress came to the Philippines in February and appeared smitten by the country as she posted instagram shots and even wrote a memoir of her experience in the place she calls, “paradise.”

“Today is my husband’s birthday, our anniversary and we are in paradise! Love from the Philippines. Diane,” went Von Furstenberg’s caption on her post of a sea, mountain and sky view from her island holiday in Palawan, south of Manila.
The posts sent a flurry of excitement in the country’s fashion circles as outpourings of welcomes, thank yous and invitations to visit other Philippine spots flooded the comments.

Von Furstenberg left America with her husband Barry Diller, just before Fashion Week, to celebrate in the southern islands of PalawanEl Nido and Coron which she referred to in her DVF site’s Love Diane section as “spectacular.”
She wrote about what she appreciated most about her holiday, “The rich vegetation of palms and bamboos, the sculpted rock formations and the most elegant simple villages, all a powerful reminder that nothing beats the beauty of nature. Then there is the underwater world and its splendor, the coral reefs and the multi color fishes… sure to inspire yet another collection in the future.”
Von Furstenberg posted her last instagram shot of the Philippines on February 6th, a snapshot of a bougainvillea plant against an azure sky over the country.
Von Furstenberg was recently touted by the Philippine fashion community after picking Filipina-American Brittany Hampton to be the first global brand ambassador for her DVF brand.

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UP Diliman physicist discovers how to slow light

A Filipina physicist from the University of the Philippines and her colleagues at the University of Glasgow have discovered how to slow down light travel to less than the speed of light without actually touching it.
Dr. Jacqueline Romero, who finish
ed both her undergraduate and graduate studies in Physics at the UP and is currently on a post doctoral fellowship in Scotland, is part of a team of scientists who have finally proven by experiment that light particles can be slowed down in a near- vacuum.
The speed of light at 186,282 miles per second in free space has been regarded as an absolute.
In common refraction, this speed has been observed to slow down and change direction when passing through glass or water and going back to its higher velocity as soon as it returns to free space.
But Romero’s team has shown that the speed of light can remain slowed down even after returning to free space, and that it can do so without interacting with glass or water.
The results been published in the Science Express journal in the paper “Spatially structured photons that travel in free space slower than the speed of light” by collaborators from the Scottish Universities Physics Alliance which include fellow physicists Daniel Giovannini, Václav Potocek, Gergely Ferenczi, Fiona Speirits, Stephen M. Barnett, Daniele Faccio, and Miles J. Padgett.
Their experiment had the team placing individual particles of light called photons on a racetrack with one photon left in its normal state, and the other sent through a special mask. The mask changed the photon’s shape, slowing them to less than the speed of light. The photon continued to travel at the lower speed at 0.001% slower than the (normal) speed of light even after being released to free space.
The experiment is considered ground-breaking and will likely change how science views light henceforth.
The implications may range from a review of the accurate measure if very short distances using large aperture lenses, to the use of light to make extremely precise measurements in determining how far the Moon is from Earth.
While there are no immediate practical applications for this scientific feat, the results of the experiment has reignited talk of the possibility of teleportation and suspending sunlight in thin air.

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Philippines one of the world’s inexpensive countries

The Philippines has been cited in a world map infographic as a country with one of the world’s most inexpensive cost of living.

The South East Asian archipelagic country ranked 15th in the Lowest Cost of Living index.
Movehub, a website that provides information on the most popular destinations for expats, presented the infographic showing the difference in living costs around the globe.
The map is based on data provided by Numbeo, the world’s largest database of user-contributed data on costs and prices around the world.
Numbeo collects data on the prices of goods and services submitted by government institutions, supermarkets, and even press reports. For this current map, data from July 1, 2013 to January 2, 2015 were used.
Consumer Price Index (CPI) was used to determine the variations in costs of living between countries, accounting for the prices of groceries, restaurants, transportation, and utilities.
The Movehub infographic uses a country’s CPI in relation to New York’s cost of living.
The supermarket grocery cost consists of the charge for bread, eggs, fruits, meat, rice, vegetables and even alcohol.
Restaurant costs refer to prices for dining in expensive, mid-range and inexpensive eating places, the alcohol and water charges, and the price of coffee products.
Transportation costs include fuel prices, taxi fares, train ticket fees, and car prices.
The costs of utilities are based on the charges such as for electricity, water, heating, and the internet.

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