Hundreds of kids make Jollibee’s Kids Who Can! Concert a success

Last October 16, Jollibee and friends brought in the fun as Jollibee Kids Club successfully staged the Kids Who Can! Concert, the show for kids and by kids. Children of all ages, along with their family and friends, braved the rains and packed the Ninoy Aquino Stadium to witness the grand concert full of wonderful performances. Joining Jollibee, Hetty, Popo, Twirlie and Yum were Jollibee Kids Club members who showcased their singing, dancing, acting and hosting skills in front of an enthusiastic crowd of thousands.

More than a hundred Jollibee Kids Club members were trained by the best mentors just for the concert. Making the event even more spectacular were host Nikki Gil, popular entertainer Sam Concepcion and actress Andi Eigenmann.

The event was opened by Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim, who shared his welcome remarks, and Jollibee marketing vice president Albert Cuadrante. Exciting pre-show activities sponsored by Milkita soon followed, and kids won great prizes. All the guests also received loot bags filled with toys and Milkita candy.

Finally, children and parents alike started clamoring for Jollibee, Hetty, Popo, Twirlie and Yum. The audience joined in giving a loud and spirited introduction, cheering with the help of the Central Colleges of the Philippines and the Mapua Institute
of Technology pep squads, the CCP Bobcats and the MIT Cheerping Cardinals, respectively. As the crowd roared and made human waves around the stadium, Jollibee and friends arrived with the Jollibee Kids Club members to kick off the singing and

“The Kids Who Can! Concert is Jollibee Kids Club’s grandest activity this year, and all our activities have been leading up to this,” shared Cuadrante. “We hope that more and more kids discover their talents because for us in Jollibee, all children are stars.”

By holding a spectacular showcase of talent, Jollibee Kids Club hopes to inspire more young and gifted children to develop their skills and be molded into well-rounded individuals as they grow up and have fun alongside Jollibee.

Jollibee Kids Club extends a helping hand to parents in guiding kids to their full potential. Parents of non-Jollibee Kids Club members can enroll their children in select Jollibee branches.


Singapore hosts first “Decade of the Mind” conference in Asia and expands efforts in brain & cognition research

400 delegates from multidisciplinary fields and communitiesconverge at Fusionopolis for this international conference

Signals from the arm muscles are used to generate a set of commands for gamers to control video games; the same technology can be harnessed to control articulation by a set of dexterous grasps on a multi-fingered hand.

18 October 2010, Singapore – A total of 15 world renowned cognitive scientists have been invited to share recent advances in their respective fields at the 6th Decade of the Mind Conference to be held at Fusionopolis from 18 – 20 October 2010. Jointly organised by A*STAR’s Institute of High Performance Computing (IHPC), MINDEF’s Defence Research & Technology Office (DRTech) and NUS’s Temasek Laboratories, it is the first such conference in Asia to promote awareness of Cognitive Science research done in Asia and from around the world. The conference also includes a Public Exhibition, showcasing cutting edge technologies.

Keynote speakers include Professor James McClelland from Stanford University, a pioneer in the cognitive science research on spoken word recognition and visual word recognition; Professor Kenichiro Mogi from Sony Computer Science Lab for his study of mind-brain issues and Professor Christof Koch from California Institute of Technology, a world pioneer in consciousness research. Other topics include sleep research that shows how some blind people can retain normal responsiveness to light, neurostimulation devices developed to treat neuroscience diseases; neurosensors for real-time sensing of cognitive states for use in controlling prosthetic limbs, computers, wheelchairs and future entertainment systems; visual prostheses, automated cognitive tutors that helps students through adaptive tutoring and domestic robots that can ease future demands on society’s pressure with an ageing population.

“Brain and cognition research is an important emerging research area in Singapore,” emphasised Associate Professor Koo Tsai Kee, Singapore’s Minister of State for Defence at the Opening Ceremony, under its theme “Cognitive Science and Neurotechnologies: Looking Forward to the Next Ten Years”. Professor Koo said that there was growing interest in brain and cognition research in Singapore and noted that such research could bring significant benefit to our society in areas such as healthcare, education, industry, security and defence. Furthermore, Singapore’s small and highly networked environment lends itself well to the inter-disciplinary nature of brain and cognition research. He revealed that discussions are currently underway among A*STAR, DRTech and the universities to establish a centre of excellence for research in cognitive science and neuro-technologies.

Human-like robots like this Telenoid was shown at the "Neurotechnology and Robotics Exhibition" held alongside the Decade of the Mind Conference in Singapore

Professor Koo also reiterated the importance of R&D to Singapore’s development into a knowledge-based and innovation driven economy. This was reflected in the Singapore government’s recent commitment of S$16.1 billion to fund R&D over the next 5 years.

Professor David Srolovitz, IHPC’s Executive Director said, “The field of cognitive science and our understanding of it have grown tremendously over the past 10 years. We are pleased to host this conference in Fusionopolis, Singapore as we envision it to bring local research communities, stakeholders and policy makers together to drive new discoveries in this area of R&D. This in turn will stimulate enterprise and establish Singapore as an innovation hub.”

Professor Srolovitz also added, “In A*STAR, an interdisciplinary team in computational social cognitive science was set up in IHPC to design computational models that explore the interplay between the social and cognitive processes behind behaviour, perceptions and interactions. Through our collaborative effort on social robotics and artificial intelligence across various A*STAR research institutes and partners, we hope to contribute towards building models of socially intelligent robots and other computational agents that are inspired directly from human interactions in social situations in Singapore and the region.”

Dr Kenneth Kwok, Head of the Cognitive Science Programme in NUS’s Temasek Laboratories and Chairman of the conference’s organizing committee, said that research in cognitive science would be relevant to defence in areas such as reducing training time, exploiting unmanned technologies via non-invasive brain computer interface, and potentially improving cognitive performance of our soldiers.


Manila Hotel Chef wins gold in the National Food Showdown 2010

The annual National Food Showdown 2010 is a prestigious event in the Food and Beverage industry in the Philippines. It’s a two-day culinary event that features the prowess of the country’s greatest culinary experts. This year, the event took place at the A Venue Events Hall in Makati where chefs from various five star hotels competed against each other in different categories.

The recently concluded National Food Showdown 2010 saw the Manila Hotel regaining its position as one of the leaders in culinary expertise in the country. Led by Chef Roland Macatangay, Executive Pastry Chef of the Manila Hotel, and with inspiration from Manila Hotel’s Executive Chef Konrad Walter, the Manila Hotel team won a GOLD medal in the Dress The Cake On The Spot category, a SILVER in the Mini Cakes Display and a DIPLOMA in Cold Dessert Display. The Manila Hotel team is comprised of Chefs Roland Macatangay, Apolonio Buiza, Maricar de Vera and Manuel Sy.


Learning is Fun at the Nick Jr.’s Play to Learn Pre-School Tour

Four year-old Rhianna Saavedra with mom Ria learned new things together at the Play to Learn Pre-School Tour.

Hundreds of pre-school children experienced the fun of learning at the recently launched Nick Jr.’s Play to Learn Pre-School Tour organized by Nickelodeon and Wyeth Progress Pre-School Gold in five different schools in Metro Manila. The tour’s engaging and exciting activities gave hundreds of kids a head start by helping them cultivate a stronger love for learning and by enhancing their mental and physical skills.

Six year-old Kenrick Sze with mommy Wingki marveled at the screening of Team Umizoomi.

“Children learn most when they are having fun. That is why we worked together with Nickelodeon which is known for their entertaining and educational shows. We want to instill enthusiasm for learning in the minds of preschoolers through this partnership. We want them to know that learning can be a lot of fun,” says Wyeth Progress Pre-School Gold’s Senior Product Manager Rachel Tongson. Through the challenges, the kids were able to test their brains, grow their knowledge and even learn about team spirit. They also had a blast participating in entertaining games, playing in interactive booths, and watching the newest Nick Jr. show, Team Umizoomi, an animated series that teaches kids basic principles in Math and Geometry through its cool characters. The kids were also treated to a surprise appearance by Kai-lan (from the hit Nick Jr. series Ni Hao, Kai-Lan) or the fun-loving sea sponge from Nickelodeon, SpongeBob SquarePants.

During the event, the kids didn’t only play to learn, they also learned how to play. Apart from being educational, all the games were exciting and proved to the young ones that learning can indeed be lots of fun. The Backyardigans’ Musical Magic Carpet game, an improvised version of the traditional “Newspaper Dance” and “The Boat is Sinking,” allowed kids to focus and enhance their math knowledge as they danced and grouped themselves. Team Umizoomi’s Silly Fix It game, on the other hand, taught them how to appreciate different shapes and forms. Other games were also themed after their favorite Nick Jr. shows like Yo Gabba Gabba and Ni Hao, Kai-Lan.

Mommy Ivy Yang with her five year-old son, Sedric, both enjoyed the study sessions together

At the Play to Learn Pre-School Tour, children are given the opportunity to excel as they enjoy what they see, hear and do with the engaging and informative activities that it brings. Playful six year-old Kenrick Sze, who enjoyed the screening of Team Umizoomi, was one of those who enjoyed the play day. “I learned how to match and fit different shapes and sizes,” he shares. Four year-old Rhianna Saavedra adds, “I learned how to behave when I am out of the classroom. I lined up and obeyed my teacher.” Friendly five year-old Sedric Yang also had a blast during the event. He has been an avid fan of the Nick Jr. show Dora the Explorer, where he learned a lot of Spanish words like gracias (thank you) and abre (open). He also learned how to count from one to ten in Spanish, just by enjoying his favorite program.

With the Play to Learn Pre-School Tour, the combined benefits of fun learning and good nutrition were made more accessible to children, fulfilling Progress Pre-School Gold’s goal to provide avenues to strengthen kids’ love for learning and help put them a step ahead in life.


LG doodles for Google

Google is on a mission, that’s why it asked LG to “doodle”.

Google, which runs the world's most popular Internet search engine, set a goal to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. For Google, the mobile world was the next natural step. After all, it's a rare situation to find oneself in front of a desktop PC or laptop when the need for specific information arises.

So in 2005, Google acquired Android, Inc., a small startup company based in nearby Palo Alto that makes mobile phone software. One of Android's co-founders included Andy Rubin, who had previously started up a company named Danger to build and market a messaging phone in the United States that caught on quickly with celebrities like Paris Hilton. With this transaction, Google had entered the mobile phone market.

Google spent on developing the Android OS (a mobile-only platform) and Google Mobile Services (advanced mobile features), and allowed global device makers to use them free-of-charge.

Because of its strong market presence globally, operational excellence, proven track record of innovation in technology and design, and openness to outside partners, LG was the one approached by Google to develop a smart phone that can help achieve their mission and business strategy.

LG’s strengths will remove barriers for consumers’ use of smartphone -- changing the whole smartphone landscape from a “techno-geek market” or “high-end market” to “everybody’s phone” or “mass phone market 2.0”.

In an unprecedented move, a team of smartly-dressed Korean designers, programmers and interface experts found themselves in Mountain View, California, a sleepy town on the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains and the heart of America's Silicon Valley, which Google called home. It was then that LG incorporated and optimized a device for the Froyo platform and Google Mobile Services earlier than other device makers.

The result is LG OPTIMUS One with Google™, a smartphone that blends superb design with ease of use, making it the perfect entry point for prospective smartphone owners. Playing a key role in achieving both Google and LG’s mission, “The LG OPTIMUS One with Google™ is developed to provide optimum smartphone experiences and serve as a leader in the popularization of smartphones by increasing the number of Android users and expanding the overall Google mobile experience around the world,” said Richard Javier, mobile communication division head of LG Electronics Philippines.

The LG OPTIMUS One with Google™ offers a new Android mobile experience with only the latest and easily accessible mobile features and services to power the consumers’ lifestyles -- thanks to the integration of LG’s cutting-edge mobile technology and the most advanced of Google’s mobile services.

Javier said: “Combining the ‘with Google™’ logo to a certain product name not only means a strong partnership with Google but also proves that the product is optimized for Google mobile services.”

The phone also provides easy access to Google’s Android Market™ where over 80,000 mobile applications are fully available. With the phone’s speedy Android 2.2 Froyo OS, consumers can enjoy all the applications and services with 2 to 5 times faster browser performance than the previous Éclair OS.

LG OPTIMUS One with Google™ will be available in the Philippines in time for the holiday season.

In another development, LG is closely at work with Google to integrate a tablet-optimized OS into what will be a superior tablet device.

Javier said the company will introduce the best-in-market tablet that will stand among the best existing products, especially among hardware and software. “The Android 2.2, or Froyo OS, was designed specifically for smartphones and is not optimized for tablet use. We do not intend for our tablet to be a large smartphone.”


Saving up without feeling the pinch

As the Philippines saw a steady influx of business process outsourcing (BPO) companies over the past decade, the country’s youth became economically powered in ways they have never been, creating a legion of young professionals whose incomes are nothing like what one earned from a summer job working in the food service industry back in the day. Today, fresh graduates who enter the BPO scene can earn 50% higher than a regular starting employee.

Still, while young professionals may now enjoy unprecedented spending power, it always pays to be smart about one’s finances. SM Development Corporation (SMDC), the fastest-growing real estate developer that prides itself in offering affordable, quality homes for every Filipino, provides a few tips on how young professionals can save up without feeling the pinch.

SET A BUDGET Keep close tabs on where your money is going; that way, you will know if you have any financial leaks (something you’re spending money on unnecessarily) and plug them accordingly. From there, you can set a monthly budget for expenses that are necessary—and stick to it.

TRIM, TRIM, TRIM Be honest with yourself and be able to distinguish between your wants and your needs. Identify what you can trim so that you will enjoy even more purchasing power. For example, list down the cable TV channels that you never watch but are adding to your monthly fee. And why are you still subscribed for a 2,000-minute cellphone plan when telecoms now offer unlimited calls and texts at dirt-cheap prices?

CONSIDER SECONDS If you’re an avid gamer or a bookworm, there are burgeoning online communities that trade or sell pre-used game titles that are in excellent condition; while stores specializing in second-hand books have sprouted throughout the country. Imagine the savings you will make in going for seconds.

DON’T FORGET THE LEFTOVERS Pack the leftovers from last night’s dinner and take them to work. Not only will you help declutter the family fridge, but home-cooked meals are infinitely more delicious and healthier than what you can find at the cafeteria or some fast-food joint. The substantial savings you make from not lunching out might surprise you.

A THIRD VENTI CUP? REALLY? Sure, a large cup of steaming-hot café latte is one of life’s little pleasures, but maybe you should rethink that second or third cup you consume on a daily basis. Not only will it be better for your weight (those lattes and frappucinos pack quite some calories) and your nerves, but imagine the money you would have saved at the end of the month from cutting back. The sum would also be nothing to sneeze at.

By adopting smart ways in managing your hard-earned money without crimping your style, you can begin to consider investing the money you save into opportunities that yield genuine long-term benefits.

The money you save from cutting back on blended coffee drinks, for example, will be enough to acquire your very own condo unit at SMDC’s MyPlace, an innovative four-tower, 23-storey residential condominium project that caters to young professionals. Strategically located in the South Triangle area of Quezon City, MyPlace offers young hard workers an affordable option to enjoy independent living.

“Our payment schemes can run as low as P5,000 a month, a very affordable price for the fulfillment of their independence. Every month, they can actually set aside the accumulated value of two blended coffee drinks a day to buy a unit,” said Imee Landicho, SMDC assistant vice president and project director.

Each unit can be easily personalized—SMDC’s nod to its market of highly individualistic young professionals. Besides being a platform for individuality, MyPlace also offers non-stop WiFi Internet service, swimming pools, a SaveMore Market, Chillscape Garden Lounge, and a jogging path. Its location—bounded by Panay Avenue and Mother Ignacia Street—also provides its young and forward-thinking residents easy access to major transport systems, plus a host of business, entertainment and leisure establishments along with major medical and educational institutions.

So, young professional, start getting smart about your money and consider the opportunities available to you to grow your earnings. Visit www.smmyplace.com or call 858-0300 for


Have a dazzling, sparkling holiday with Avon Fashions

With the holidays just around the corner, writing Christmas lists is now a Filipina’s favorite pastime.

If you’re after the perfect gift for yourself or for a loved one, Avon Fashions Intimate Apparel has what you need. ’Tis the season to be merry and sparkle with Avon Fashions 2010 Holiday Collection!

Diamonds are a girl’s best friend. This makes Avon Fashions’ Deena Underwire Convertible Brassiere (P475) and Deena Panty (P199) your soulmate. Embellished with bluish silver microfiber fabric that mixes with delicate lace to give off brilliance and shine, the set will bring out a woman’s inner queen. The Deena set is both elegant and versatile with multi functionalities -- wear it conventionally, strapless, halter-like, criss-cross and asymmetrically.

Get ready to glam up this merrymaking season and let Avon Fashions Intimate Apparel get you into a fashionable holiday mood from within!

The Avon Fashions Holiday Collection is available through Avon Representatives nationwide. Don’t have an Avon lady yet? Contact the Avon Customer Hotline at 8642900 or visit www.avon.com.ph.


Runners share the road for the second Quezon City International Marathon

The most anticipated running event is happening in Quezon City on December 5 this year. Now on its second year, the Quezon City International Marathon is organized by the Executive Runners Club of the Philippines (RUNNEX) and is supported by the city’s local government headed by Mayor Herbert Bautista and Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte.
Touted to be the biggest and most exciting international marathon this year, recreational, professional and beginner runners will outrace each other as they pound the road to the 5 km, 10 km, 21 km and 42 km finish line. As with last year, thousands of runners are expected to register from October 4 to November 7 for the different race categories. Registration sites will be at R.O.X. Bonifacio High Street, Chris Sports outlets, Secondwind in Ortigas, the Quezon City Hall and the RUNNEX office at the Bahay ng Alumni in UP Diliman.

Registration fees are P650 for the 42 km, P500 for the 21 km and P350 for the 5 km and 10 km distance. Race kits will be released on November 27 and 28 at the Bahay ng Alumni, University of the Philippines, Diliman. A finisher’s medal will be awarded to participants who will cross the 42km and 21km finish line.

Considered an important landmark in the city, the iconic Quezon Memorial Circle will serve as the start and finish lines for the race. Depending on the category, the race route will traverse the famous landmarks that make Quezon City a place with many attractions. Known as the widest road in the area, runners will run along Commonwealth Avenue and pass through a portion of La Mesa Dam Eco Park, a venue providing for healthful outdoor recreation and a true forest experience. It is a living classroom and laboratory for environmental education and aims to be a center for biodiversity conservation. The road back will bring the runners inside the University of the Philippines, a favorite running spot because of the tree-lined roads that offer shade to hot and weary runners. Here, the Oblation may be viewed, another of the city’s famous icons.

Inspired by the huge turnout of last year’s Quezon City International Marathon, RUNNEX teamed up with Neville Manaois to ensure a safe and unique running experience for all participants. Doing away with the usual come-on gimmicks of other races, QCIM will instead focus on the safety and needs of the runners by making sure water stations abound and marshals are deployed to ensure that the action on the road is constantly monitored. With the meticulous and careful planning put into this event, local and foreign runners may look forward to a safe and fun filled run from their first step to the finish.
For more details, please contact the Runnex secretariat at (02)435-5291, or visit the site www.runnex.org or QCIM2’s official Facebook Page www.facebook.com/qcim2