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A beacon is an intentionally conspicuous device designed to attract attention to a specific location. A common example is the lighthouse, which provides a fixed location that can be used to navigate around obstacles or into port. More modern examples include a variety of radio beacons that can be read on radio direction finders in all weather, radar transponders that appear on radar displays. Beacons can be combined with semaphoric or other indicators to provide important information, such as the status of an airport, by the colour and rotational pattern of its airport beacon, or of pending weather as indicated on a weather beacon mounted at the top of a tall building or similar site; when used in such fashion, beacons can be considered a form of optical telegraphy. Beacons help guide navigators to their destinations. Types of navigational beacons include radar reflectors, radio beacons and visual signals. Visual beacons range from small, single-pile structures to large lighthouses or light stations and can be located on land or on water.

Lighted beacons are called lights. Aerodrome beacons are used to indicate locations of helipads. Handheld beacons are employed in aircraft marshalling, are used by the marshal to deliver instructions to the crew of aircraft as they move around an active airport, heliport or aircraft carrier. Classically, beacons were fires lit at well-known locations on hills or high places, used either as lighthouses for navigation at sea, or for signalling over land that enemy troops were approaching, in order to alert defenses; as signals, beacons were part of a relay league. Systems of this kind have existed for centuries over much of the world; the ancient Greeks called them phryctoriae, while beacons figure on several occasions on the column of Trajan. In ancient China, sentinels on and near the Great Wall of China used a sophisticated system of daytime smoke and nightime flame to send signals along long chains of beacon towers. Legend has it that Zhōu Yōu Wáng, king of the Western Zhou dynasty, played a trick multiple times in order to amuse his melancholy concubine, ordering beacon towers lit to fool his Marquess and soldiers.

At some point, friends became enemies and when enemies, led by Marquess of Shen arrived at the wall. But this time, when the towers were lit, no defenders came, leading to Yōu's death and the colapse of the Western Zhou dynasty. In the 10th century, during the Arab–Byzantine wars, the Byzantine Empire used a beacon system to transmit messages from the border with the Abbasid Caliphate, across Anatolia to the imperial palace in the Byzantine capital, Constantinople, it was devised by Leo the Mathematician for Emperor Theophilos, but either abolished or radically curtailed by Theophilos' son and successor, Michael III. Beacons were used in Greece as well, while the surviving parts of the beacon system in Anatolia seem to have been reactivated in the 12th century by Emperor Manuel I Komnenos. In Scandinavia many hill forts were part of beacon networks to warn against invading pillagers. In Finland, these beacons were called vainovalkeat, "persecution fires", or vartiotulet, "guard fires", were used to warn Finn settlements of imminent raids by the Vikings.

In Wales, the Brecon Beacons were named for beacons used to warn of approaching English raiders. In England, the most famous examples are the beacons used in Elizabethan England to warn of the approaching Spanish Armada. Many hills in England were named Beacon Hill after such beacons. In England the authority to erect beacons lay with the King and was deligated to the Lord High Admiral; the money due for the maintenance of beacons was called Beaconagium and was levied by the sheriff of each county. In the Scottish borders country, a system of beacon fires was at one time established to warn of incursions by the English. Hume and Eggerstone castles and Soltra Edge were part of this network; the Great Wall of China is a beacon network. In Spain, the border of Granada in the territory of the Crown of Castile had a complex beacon network to warn against Moorish raiders and military campaigns. Vehicular beacons are rotating or flashing lights affixed to the top of a vehicle to attract the attention of surrounding vehicles and pedestrians.

Emergency vehicles such as fire engines, police cars, tow trucks, construction vehicles, snow-removal vehicles carry beacon lights. The color of the lamps varies by jurisdiction. Beacons may be constructed with halogen bulbs similar to those used in vehicle headlamps, xenon flashtubes, or LEDs. Incandescent and xenon light sources require the vehicle's engine to continue running to ensure that the battery is not depleted when the lights are used for a prolonged period; the low power consumption of LEDs allows the vehicle's engine to remain turned off while the lights operate nodes. Beacons and bonfires are used to mark occasions and celebrate events; the Mishna describes a system of fire beacons used by the high court in Jerusalem to communicate the declaration of a new month to Jews in Israel and Babylon. Beacons have allegedly been abused by shipwreckers. An illicit fire at a wrong position would be used to direct a ship against shoals or beaches, so that its cargo could be looted after the ship sank or ran aground.

There are, however, no substantiated occurrences of such intentional shipwrecking. In wireless networks, a beacon is a type of frame, sent by the ac

Margarethe Arndt-Ober

Margarethe Arndt-Ober was a German opera singer who had an active international career during the first half of the twentieth century. A skilled contralto, Ober enjoyed a long and fruitful association with the Berlin State Opera from 1907 to 1944, she was notably a principal singer at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City between 1913 and 1917. A native of Berlin, Margarethe Ober studied singing in Berlin with Benno Stolzenberg and Arthur Arndt, the latter of whom she married in 1910. Ober made her professional opera debut as Azucena in Giuseppe Verdi's Il trovatore at the Opern- und Schauspielhaus Frankfurt in 1906. After a short stint at the opera in Stettin, she became a principal singer with the Berlin State Opera in 1907, remaining with that company for over 35 years. In 1908 she had her first major success in Berlin singing Amneris in Verdi's Aida with Enrico Caruso as Radames; that same year she portrayed the title role in the German premiere of Jules Massenet's Thérèse. In April 1910 she sang in the world premiere of Arthur Nevin's Poia.

In 1913 she portrayed Eboli in the Berlin premiere of Verdi's Don Carlos. In 1913 Ober joined the roster of principal singers at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, singing with the company for four seasons, she made her debut with the company on November 1913, as Ortrud in Richard Wagner's Lohengrin. With the company she notably sang Octavian in the United States premiere of Richard Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier, Katharine in the Met's first production of Hermann Goetz's Der Widerspänstigen Zähmung, Alisoun in the world premiere of Reginald de Koven's The Canterbury Pilgrims, her other Met roles included Amneris, Brangäne in Wagner's Tristan und Isolde, Dalila in Camille Saint-Saëns's Samson et Dalila, Eglantine in Carl Maria von Weber's Euryanthe, Erda in both Wagner's Das Rheingold and Siegfried, Fricka in Wagner's Die Walküre, Laura in Amilcare Ponchielli's La Gioconda, Nancy in Friedrich von Flotow's Martha, Waltraute in Wagner's Götterdämmerung, the Witch in Engelbert Humperdinck's Königskinder.

Her final and 182nd performance at the Met was as Marina in Modest Mussorgsky's Boris Godunov on April 27, 1917. On May 8, 1917, Ober performed in a benefit concert for the composer Eugen Haile. With news of an imminent declaration of war against Germany circulating among audience members at the April 2, 1917, performance of The Canterbury Pilgrims, spontaneous displays of American patriotism interrupted the performance. Shortly after the opera had resumed, Ober fainted on stage within full view of the audience. On November 2, 1917, a few days before the opening of the 1917-18 season, the Met cancelled the contracts of several of its German artists, including Ober, citing its right to cancellation reserved for events such as war. Ober sued for $50,000 for breach of contract, maintaining she was "simply an artist." She lost her case, but was detained in America until the end of the war. Ober returned to Germany in 1919 and resumed her career at the Berlin State Opera until her retirement from the stage in 1944.

In 1924 she portrayed Kostelnicka in the Berlin premiere of Leoš Janáček’s Jenůfa, on 11 May 1925 she sang in the Berlin premiere of Der Ferne Klang by Franz Schrecker, alongside the composers's wife and Richard Tauber, conducted by Erich Kleiber. Other Berlin highlights included appearances in three more world premieres: Eduard Künneke's operetta Die große Sünderin, the operas Der singende Teufel by Franz Schreker and Peer Gynt by Werner Egk. Outside of Berlin, Ober was a regular performer at the Zoppot Festival, appearing there every year from 1922 to 1942, she made appearances in Spain, the Netherlands, Norway, at most of Germany's major opera houses. Her voice is preserved on a number of recordings made on the HMV, Parlophon, Pathé, Victor labels, she died in 1971. Margarethe Arndt-Ober at Flickr Commons

Feng County, Jiangsu

Feng County, or Fengxian, is under the administration of Xuzhou, Jiangsu province, China. The northwestern-most and westernmost county-level division in the province, it borders the provinces of Shandong to the north and west, Anhui to the south; the county is well known for its about 11,120 acres of the Fuji apple trees. The word "Feng" here has dual meanings: For one thing, it was the name of an ancient tributary of the Si River which flowed through the area. For another the area was deemed to be bountiful, while "feng" is an adjective to describe such a condition in Chinese. Feng county proper was administered as a town under Pei county called Feng yi by the early Han dynasty before its establishment, it was assigned to Pei Commandery, Yu province until 583, being a part of Pengcheng Commandery. It was once disestablished, but was restored in 457; the county was temporarily under the jurisdiction of Shandong province during 1949–53.


MageSlayer is a computer game released in 1997. It was based on the Vampire engine, developed along with Take No Prisoners; the engine provides a top-down view with 2D sprites for the character and monsters in a full 3D environment with dynamic and colored lighting. The score was composed by Kevin Schilder. MageSlayer marked another Raven Software collaboration with the fantasy artist Brom, who produced the box cover artwork for the game. In a world of fantasy far away, a shower of meteorites called; the meteorites lie about everywhere pulsing with radioactive power which the people of the land scramble to exploit. Of the people only three professions had the power to exploit the radioactive stones; the Mages, in their hungry studies of the meteorites, gained knowledge of the use of the stones and gained terrible power. Consumed by their lust for the power of the stones, they dominated over all; the five Mageslayer clans were formed to free the people of the lands from the power hungry Mages that had enslaved them.

The Mageslayers learned to harvest the power of two powerful meteorites that fell from the sky. The first, the Sun Orb, was studied and they learned to control powerful magic, without the megalomaniac side effects that the Mages experienced; the second, the Starstone, was crafted into five powerful Relics. Using these two forces the MageSlayers drove the Mages into retreat; when the Mages fought back, the Clan of Knowledge was sacrificed in order to save the other clans. The Mageslayers were victorious, but it cost them the five Relics crafted from the Starstone and the Clan of Knowledge was destroyed; each of the clans passed the knowledge of the SunOrb down through the generations. A single leader of each of the clans was selected to guard the most revered of the Clan secrets. A millennium has passed; the Lore Thane, Leader of the Clan of Knowledge and descendant of one of the five powerful Mageslayers, seeks revenge for what he sees was a betrayal. Now the Lore Thane is ready to take revenge on the other four Guilds that refused to help him against the Mages which led to his clan's destruction.

He's unearthed the five Starstone relics that won the Mage Wars and placed them under the protection of his minions. The four remaining Mageslayer clans have joined forces and sent their leaders to fight their way through the dominions of the Lore Thane's allies in order to recover the relics. Scribes, named Archivists, have foretold a coming conflict with a powerful and evil undead Lore Thane named Wyark, growing in terrible strength with the aim of complete conquest of the world; the archivists have determined that the retrieval of the five special relics will enable the Mageslayer forces of good to defeat the evil Wyark. The players takes on the role of the Mageslayer tasked with retrieving the artifacts and defeat Wyark; the game is a 3D top-down hack-and-slash dungeon-type game, utilizing four different character classes with differing spells and abilities. The game offers different multiplayer options; the player journeys through 30 levels of dungeons, rivers of death, lava pits, monster rooms across five realms in order to defeat each realm's ruler and gain its relic.

Utilizing the same Vampire engine as Take No Prisoners, MageSlayer was Raven's tribute to top-down action games. The main inspiration for MageSlayer was Atari's game Gauntlet. Next Generation reviewed the PC version of the game, rating it four stars out of five, stated that "Overall, this game's action, level design, multiplayers modes make this game stand out from most other shooters on the block. For those players who possess the benefit of 3D acceleration, this title could be quite a nice one to showcase your shiny new hardware." MageSlayer at via Internet Archive MageSlayer at via Internet Archive MageSlayer at MobyGames GameSpy review


Varadvinayak spelt as Varadavinayaka, is one of the Ashtavinayak temples of the Hindu deity Ganesha. It is located in Mhad village situated in Khalapur taluka near Karjat and Khopoli of Raigad District, India; the temple was built by Peshwa General Ramji Mahadev Biwalkar in 1725AD. This place doesn't come in raigad district, but rather in pune district, but it's close to panvel. Legend has it that the childless king, Bhima of Koudinyapur and his wife met the sage Vishwamitra while they had come to forest for penance. Vishwamitra gave the king a mantra Ekashar Gajana Mantra to chant and thus his son and heir, prince Rukmaganda was born. Rukmaganda grew up into a beautiful young prince. One day, on a hunting trip Rukmaganda stopped at the hermitage of Rishi Vachaknavi; the Rishi's wife, fell in love at the sight of the handsome prince and asked him to fulfill her desires. The virtuous prince flatly left the ashram. Mukunda became lovesick. Knowing her plight, King Indra made love to her. Mukunda gave birth to a son Gritsamada.

In time, when Gritsamada learned of the circumstances of his birth, he cursed his mother to become the unattractive, thorny berry-bearing "Bhor" plant. Mukunda in turn cursed Gritsamada, they both heard a heavenly voice saying, "Gritsamada is the son of Indra", leaving them both shocked, but too late to alter their respective curses. Mukunda was transformed into the Bhor plant. Gritsamada and penitent, retreated to the Pushpak forest where he prayed for a reprieve to Lord Ganesh. Lord Ganesha was pleased by Gritsamada's penance and offered him a boon that he will bear a son who would not be defeated by anybody other than Shankara. Gritsamada asks Ganesh to bless the forest, so that any devotees who pray here will be successful, urged Ganesha to stay there permanently and asked for knowledge of Brahma. Gritsamada built a temple there and the Ganesha idol installed there is called Varadavinayaka. Today the forest is known as Bhadraka, it is said that if the coconut received as prasad during Maghi Chaturthi is consumed, one will be blessed with a son.

Hence the temple is full with devotees during Maghi Utsav. The idol of this temple Varada Vinayak is a swayambu and was found in the adjoining lake in an immersed position in 1690 AD; this temple is said to be built in 1725AD by Subhedar Ramji Mahadev Biwalkar. The temple premises are on one side of a beautiful pond; the idol of this temple has his trunk turned to the left. There is an oil lamp in this shrine, said to be burning continuously since 1892; this temple has the idol of Mushika, Navagraha Devtas and Shivalinga. There are 4 elephant idols guarding the 4 sides of the temple. In this Ashta Vinayak Temple devotees can enter the Garbagriha and pay their homage and respects to the idol personally. Devotees visit the Varadvinayak shrine throughout the year. During festivals like the Magha Chaturthi huge crowds can be seen in this temple. Ashtavinayaka

LG Optimus Pad

The LG Optimus Pad is a tablet computer developed by LG Electronics for its own line-up and for specific mobile carriers in selected countries. Mobile carries include NTT DoCoMo and T-Mobile which unlike its domestic rival, Samsung offering the same tablet model for specific carriers, LG does not alter the specs of those they release to these carriers and the only alteration is on the addition of the mobile carriers logo on it; the LG Optimus Pad was first released in South Korea in April 2011 and in the US in March 2011, known as the T-Mobile G-Slate. It is LG's first device running Android 3.0 and appeared at the Mobile World Congress in February 2011. The LG Optimus Pad has a 5MP rear-facing camera, it features an 8.9-inch touchscreen that includes Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n and Bluetooth 2.1 and is powered by a 6400 mAh Li-Ion which runs on a 1 GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 processor and Android 3.0 Honeycomb with Optimus UI. The tablet has been criticised for the lack of updates provided by LG and for locking the bootloader with the first update it got without notifying users.

Neither LG or T-Mobile were helpful with any of the issues playing dead. While its competitors like Motorola Xoom were updated at least to Android 4.0 ICS and even to 4.1 Jelly Bean, LG only gave its G-Slate 2 minor updates and wasn't able to release an important version 3.2 Honeycomb which should be theoretically simple for LG to make and would improve compatibility with apps and extend functionality. Because of this and closed drivers the Android community was not able to make a functional ICS or Jelly Bean ROM - most camera can't be used with those builds. Latest official ROM was released in March 2012 and unofficial ROM was abandoned in January 2013. LG Optimus Pad LTE The first successor to the LG Optimus Pad LG G Pad 8.3 The second successor to the LG Optimus Pad