Comparison pictures of Samurai Taisho Darth Vader & Ronin Kenzan Boba Fett 7" action figure

continued from previous toy blog post

Having reviewed both the Bandai Tamashii Nations Star Wars Movie Realization Samurai Taisho Darth Vader 18 cm action figure (posted HERE and HERE) as well as Bandai Tamashii Nations Star Wars Movie Realization 7-inch tall Ronin Kenzan Boba Fett action figure (posted earlier HERE and HERE), it’s time to put the two action figures side-by-side for a size comparison.

Star Wars gave us a lot of interesting characters, chief among them has to be Darth Vader and Boba Fett, two of the most notorious and famous villains we have ever come across. These two have been made into so many countless action figures that it boggles the mind but they have never been re-imagined and re-designed as Samurai warriors until now. And that is why Bandai Tamashii Nations‘ Movie Realization series for Star Wars has made such an impact, becoming one of the most sought-after lines in the collecting community. They are different, they are unique and they are beautifully designed and thought out. I already have four from the series (these two plus a Ashigaru Stormtrooper action figure which I have reviewed on my toy blog HERE and HERE as well as the Teppo Ashigaru Sandtrooper which will be reviewed soon) and am looking forward to the Akonaze Royal Guard.

All the Star Wars characters being reimagined as Japanese warriors so far have masks and helmets which helps in the redesign. We haven’t seen any of the heroes from the film franchise because most of them have faces (Luke, Leia and Han Solo) which might be a little more tricky to interpret. Still, I am glad that these figures got made and even though they are not 1:6 scale, I for one am not complaining.

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Related post:
Square Enix Play Arts Kai Star Wars Variant 1:7 scale Boba Fett 10-inch Action Figure Review posted HERE and HERE

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DeepMind moves to TensorFlow

Posted by Koray Kavukcuoglu, Research Scientist, Google DeepMind

At DeepMind, we conduct state-of-the-art research on a wide range of algorithms, from deep learning and reinforcement learning to systems neuroscience, towards the goal of building Artificial General Intelligence. A key factor in facilitating rapid progress is the software environment used for research. For nearly four years, the open source Torch7 machine learning library has served as our primary research platform, combining excellent flexibility with very fast runtime execution, enabling rapid prototyping. Our team has been proud to contribute to the open source project in capacities ranging from occasional bug fixes to being core maintainers of several crucial components.

With Google’s recent open source release of TensorFlow, we initiated a project to test its suitability for our research environment. Over the last six months, we have re-implemented more than a dozen different projects in TensorFlow to develop a deeper understanding of its potential use cases and the tradeoffs for research. Today we are excited to announce that DeepMind will start using TensorFlow for all our future research. We believe that TensorFlow will enable us to execute our ambitious research goals at much larger scale and an even faster pace, providing us with a unique opportunity to further accelerate our research programme.

As one of the core contributors of Torch7, I have had the pleasure of working closely with an excellent community of developers and researchers, and it has been amazing to see all the great work that has been built on top of the platform and the impact this has had on the field. Torch7 is currently being used by Facebook, Twitter, and many start-ups and academic labs as well as DeepMind, and I’m proud of the significant contribution it has made to a large community in both research and industry. Our transition to TensorFlow represents a new chapter, and I feel very excited about the prospect of DeepMind contributing heavily to another great open source machine learning platform that everyone can use to advance the state-of-the-art.

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MOMTOYS 1:6 FEMALE CLOWN 12-inch Action Figure is Batman: Arkham Knight Harley Quinn

“You’re gonna pay for letting Mistah J die!”

In “Batman: Arkham Knight”, Harley Quinn and Batman’s foes united with Scarecrow to destroy Batman, and she still blamed him for the Joker’s death. Grief-stricken and vengeful, Harley brutally reasserted control of the Joker’s gang, which threatened to fragment after his death. Freed from the Joker’s domineering personality, Harley became a dangerous, and unpredictable new force in the Gotham City underworld.

MOMTOYS MOM-TS001 1:6 scale FEMALE CLOWN 12-inch Action Figure aka “Batman: Arkham Knight” Harley Quinn will come with: Arm Sleeves / Gloves X 1 Pair, Baseball Bat, 12-inch Female Body, Boots X 1 Pair, Dress, Hands X 4, Head Sculpt, Pants, Shirt

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The release date is approximately 3RD QTR 2016.

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I Cittadini hanno diritto di sapere

I Cittadini di Buscate hanno diritto di sapere chi andranno a votare. Forse non tutti leggeranno i programmi amministrativi, ma almeno i Cittadini vogliono sapere chi hanno di fronte come candidati sindaco e quali idee sostengono.

Per essere chiari:
- due liste hanno come Candidato Sindaco esponenti locali di Forza Italia o ex Forza Italia, tutti e due di stretta "fede" mantovaniana (Fabio Continua a leggere

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Are Merrill Lynch Thieves?

In my early 20s, round about 1973, I received a phone call from Merrill Lynch – it was a stock broker who was looking for the ‘other’ Tom Lee. I lived in Michigan and there were two of us with the same name. I occasionally got calls for him. Anyway – while the call was not for me, I was interested. I was in my first job after university and wanted to start investing for my future. My great grandmother was a big fan of investing and told me I should do so as young as possible.

So following that call, I opened a Share Builder account and started investing. The idea was you sent them money and they bought fractional bits of shares and credited your account. Dividends were re-invested. It was sweet – I put a few dollars in on a fairly regular basis and slowly my portfolio grew. It was a nice programme and I invested consistently.

In 1975, I moved to the UK – but mail does get here from the US, and I managed to organise change of address with no problem. With currency control in effect at that time, I was unable to invest more – but was happy with the growth due to dividends. I hoped, one day, to be able to invest more.

In 1981, I joined what was then Arthur Andersen (now Accenture) and was forced to sell all my shares – except for one that I did not sell. I had a few shares of IBM and wanted to keep those. I was successful.

Since then, the shares just grew – each quarter, the dividend bought more bits of shares and, along with a few stock splits, I ended up with around 320 shares by last year. And although IBM has gone through a rough time – this is to me a lot of money that I planned to use in my retirement. I reached 65 last summer and was considering what to do with these shares. I did not need the money urgently so was happy to wait.

But then Merrill Lynch ‘helped’ me. In December 2015,they took all the shares, closed my account and now they refuse to talk to me. They claim they tried to contact me in August 2015, but I never received any communications. They have been utterly unhelpful at tracking down my missing IBM shares.

They claim the money has been given over to the state of Delaware under an escheat scheme. Well – Delaware has no record of any money or shares given over. And Merrill Lynch have refused to talk to me saying I should talk to Delaware.

Bottom line: I have lost 320+ shares of IBM (worth today roughly $47k). They refuse to help – and just refer me to Delaware ( Having spoken to the folks in Delaware – they know nothing about it.

What can I conclude but that Merrill Lynch are thieves and crooks? Maybe that’s strong language. But what do you call a firm of bankers who take your money and in effect laugh in your face and tell you to get lost? I am gutted to have lost that much money due to bankers who seem to be able to get away with it.

If you know any one at Merrill Lynch, feel free to point them to this blog post.

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