Money Matters - Simplified


Report: Idol eyes Vegas, communal living

Hollywood -- Big changes may be in store at American Idol, including location shooting in Las Vegas and more behind-the-scenes footage, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter.

The Reporter said this week that among the ideas under consideration is having the top 12 contestants bunk together in a Hollywood Hills home with more interviews and off-stage footage.

There will also be looser rules on social media.

The Reporter said the producers will relax rules that had abruptly folded the singers' Twitter accounts into one single feed for the entire show.

As for Las Vegas, sources say the plan thus far would ship 60 contestants to The Vegas Strip where they would be integrated into a production of

Site lists most 'obscene' U.S. cities

Ashburn, Va. -- A business news Web site said its analysis of Google data named Ashburn, Va., as the most obscene location in the nation.

Business Insider said its analysis was performed by putting comedian George Carlin's famous "seven dirty words you can never say on television" into Google Trends and giving each city a score for each appearance of the word in a local Google search.

The news Web site said the rest of the Top 10 on the list, which is in its third year, are Tampa, Fla.; Herndon, Va.; Rochester, N.Y.; Irvine, Calif.; Newark, N.J.; Philadelphia; Louisville, K.Y.; Pittsburgh and Los Angeles.

10 Black Friday apps to avail best bargains

The Black Friday is just a day away and like always, hundreds of shoppers will be thronging retail stores to avail the best discounts and lowest prices.

'Cupcake Lady' truck seized by city

Philadelphia -- The Philadelphia "Buttercream Cupcake Lady," who sells treats at various locations from an old postal truck, said her truck was confiscated by city authorities.

Cupcake hawker Kate Carrara, who announces her intended stops on social networking sites, said she arrived at a stop on Market Street near 33rd at noon Tuesday and her truck was quickly surrounded by city Department of Licenses & Inspections business compliance officers, the Philadelphia Daily News reported Wednesday.

Carrara said the officers confiscated her truck and she had to pay $200 to get it back. She told the Philadelphia Inquirer she has a permit to sell the cupcakes on the move, but the list of approved locations is unclear.

Burger King pizza burger: 2,520 calories

New York -- Fast food chain Burger King said the 2,520-calorie NY Pizza Burger is on its way to the franchise's flagship location in Midtown New York.

Officials said the burger, which features pepperoni, mozzarella, marinara sauce and nearly 2 pounds of beef, will debut exclusively at the Whopper Bar in Times Square early next month, the New York Daily News reported Thursday.

The sandwich comes served on a 9 1/2-inch sesame seed bun and is sliced into six pizza-style pieces.

Burger King Vice President John Schaufelberger said the NY Pizza Burger is a tribute to the city that also "demonstrates the type of menu offerings our guests can expect."

Alberta, Canada, favored by miners

Montreal -- Alberta, Canada, has bumped the province of Quebec off of its perch as the most preferred location for mining companies, the Fraser Institute said Wednesday.

The "Survey of Mining Companies: 2010 Mid-Year Update" said taxes increases imposed on the industry "without consultation" in Quebec had "shaken" the confidence of mining companies.

Quebec "remains a good place to mine," the report said, but its ranking fell to third behind Alberta and Finland.

Among locations listed as "losers" that fell in the rankings, Australia's plan to initiate a resources super profits tax pushed its score on the annual index from 62.9 (out of a possible 100) to 40.9., dropping Australia's ranking from 18th on the list to 31rst out of 51 locations studied.

Study zeroes in on genes 'at work'

Los Angeles -- U.S. researchers say they're using human gene maps not just to show their location but also which ones interact with each other to help cells thrive.

Scientists at UCLA say their findings will help researchers understand which genes work together as cells grow, function and then die, a university release said Monday.

Humans have about 20,000 different genes that initiate and control all bodily processes, from moving blood through the veins to stimulating the immune system to attack a cold virus.

Not all genes in a cell are active during the processes, but some are almost always engaged in either one-on-one reactions or creating networks involving dozens of genes.

Extreme jumper stuck in extreme location

Squamish, British Columbia -- An extreme jumper was stuck in an extreme location on a Canadian mountain Monday, authorities said.

The stranded BASE jumper was spotted stranded on Stawamus Chief Mountain, a popular British Columbia venue for the risky activity, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported.

BASE stands for the four types of extreme jumping locations: buildings, antennae, spans (bridges), and earth (cliffs).

Rescuers were making their way to the parachutist, who was safe but unable to make his own way down the mountain, Vancouver radio station CKWX reported.

Twitter becomes location savvy, acquires Mixer Labs

San Francisco, California, December 24: Twitter has acquired Mixer Labs, the company that manufactured GeoAPI, an application that provides geolocation services for mobile applications and is all set to provide the users with navigation services on their mobile phones while tweeting with friends.

5 Mistakes Startups Make

Every start-up business makes mistakes frequently. Quite a few of these are common mistakes from which every business must learn.