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Apple’s isn’t ready to premiere its first retail store in Downtown Los Angeles just yet, but the stage is set. Broadway’s Tower Theatre is undergoing the largest transformation in its 92-year history. Apple’s restoration of the building will save an important part of Los Angeles culture and draw new energy to downtown’s core. Here’s a look at what’s been done so far.
Last August, Apple officially unveiled its plans for the Tower Theatre after nearly three years of rumors. With stores in L.A.’s suburbs but none downtown, the Tower presented an excellent opportunity for Apple to grow in a way that exemplifies its modern retail values.
Late in October 2023, I documented the dilapidated state of the Tower Theatre just as Apple’s renovations were beginning. The terra-cotta structure was still immaculately detailed, but tired and worn from decades of neglect and nearly a century of opening nights. Last Sunday, November 3, I revisited the Tower to check in on its restoration progress.
Apple has rehabilitated dozens of historic buildings, mostly outside of the United States. The latest project, Apple Carnegie Library in Washington, D.C., shows that a proper restoration takes time but is well worth the wait. That’s sure to be the case in Los Angeles as well, where exterior work on the Tower Theatre appears slow but steady.
Over the past year, the arched stained glass window above the theater’s entrance has been boarded over, presumably for cleaning and releading. The 1960s-era marquee is partially demolished, with scaffolding rising on top of the remaining portion. Apple’s renderings show that the theater’s original 1927 marquee will be recreated.
Left: October 2023. Right: November 2023.
Black construction walls obscure the Broadway entrance and cover every ground-floor window. The ornate 8th Street canopy has been reinforced with plywood supports so crews can work above. Last year, the theater’s 8th Street facade was still carved up by a collection of shuttered and recently relocated shops. The tenant spaces have been removed, and new doors will open the main store area directly to the street.
Visible work on theater’s iconic and severely damaged namesake tower has yet to begin, but hints of progress can be found all over the facade. Small elements — a decorative cast iron column, a few pieces of terra-cotta, and canopy detailing — have been removed. These features will likely be used as templates to recreate missing or damaged details elsewhere on the building.
Blue painter’s tape maps a grid of points on the terra-cotta tiling near the front of the building. Just below, graffiti from a tagging this past summer has been scrubbed. The LA Historic Theatre Foundation reported in October that new exterior lighting is being trialed on the clock tower and 8th Street facade.
The exterior lights weren’t on when I visited just after sunset on the 3rd, but lights inside on the second floor offered a glimpse of scaffolding and construction. According to the Los Angeles Theatres blog, considerable demolition work has already been completed inside.
It’s not just Tower Theatre that’s changing. All of Downtown Los Angeles is still rapidly evolving. Next door to Apple, signage is already lit in the window for the Vans flagship store promised to open in fall 2023. Compared to last year, the area felt cleaner, safer, and better maintained. Downtown no longer feels like a strange location for an Apple Store.
Broadway is growing, but with it has come a homogenizing force brushing the streets and storefronts of some unique character. The arrival of international brands and boutique restaurants with a universal design taste makes Downtown Los Angeles feel just a little more like any other city.
When the opening credits roll and the Tower Theatre comes to life again, it’ll be Apple’s job to celebrate the arts and culture of Los Angeles through Today at Apple, reminding visitors of the building’s cinema past and creative future. Will you be there for the premiere?
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Photos inevitably get damaged with the pace of time no matter how much we care about them. They get scratched up, stained, or discolored. Luckily, it is possible to save treasured pictures. All you need is a bunch of your digitized photos and powerful photo restoration software. But you will not need to spend hours looking for a handy program. We’ve tried lots of different editors and handpicked the 5 best photo restoration programs for you. Ready to explore them? Then, let’s dive in.
Best Online Courses to get highest paid in 2023PhotoGlory AKVIS Retoucher
This software can help you to erase tears, dirt, and other damages from your images as well as to reconstruct some missing parts of the chosen photos. You can employ this program to fix your pictures manually using content-aware brushes. Alternatively, you can select certain areas, and the software will automatically redeem all the damage. AKVIS Retoucher works as a Photoshop plugin too. Nevertheless, there are some cons: the software is quite expensive and it doesn’t have any tools for image coloring.SoftOrbits Photo Retoucher
One of the best programs since it can help you to remove scratches, stains, and tears from your digitalized old images. The software allows you to get rid of blur and grain in your pictures and add date stamps and text captions to your photos. You can do all the job manually or employ the automatic mode, which can sometimes be not precise. The interface of this photo editor is quite simple so you will not need to watch lots of tutorials to start restoring your old photos. SoftOrbits Photo Retoucher also allows you to colorize your images and further enhance them in a couple of minutes. Perhaps, you’ll need to download some additional presets.Photoshop PhotoWorks
One of the best software to restore old photos. You can manually erase scratches, stains, and marks from your pictures with the help of the Healing brush. PhotoWorks allows you not only to fix your images but edit them the way you need. You can make use of the software’s content-aware AI and let the program enhance your pictures automatically. Due to the built-in tips and user-friendly interface of PhotoWorks, you can edit your photos manually. You can use the software to fix blurry images and increase their clarity, get rid of unwanted objects, swap the backdrop of your photo, and correct perspective and distortions. When your old photo is restored you can also apply more than 200 effects to it.
Now you’ve explored the 5 best old photo restoration software and hopefully have chosen the one for you. Not yet? Then, you can make use of the free trial versions and pick the one that perfectly suits both your creative needs and your budget.
The UNALOME is a center for tranquility and wellness with a cohesive approach designed by Sofia Stok, Devyani Jain, and Shandon Herft as a part of PAACADEMY’s “Meta-Fluid Studio” with Mariana Cabugueira. The project’s main objective was to create a seamless transition between nature, built and unbuilt while satisfying human senses.
© PAACADEMY – Studio Mariana Cabugueira / META-Fluid Studio / Group 4 – Sofia Stok – Devyani Jain – Shandon Herft
The Meta-Fluid online workshop was hosted by PAACADEMY, between May 15-July 15, 2023, on ZOOM. Meta-Fluid is one of the High-demand workshops at the PAACADEMY that focuses on exploring the quality and power of Fluid Design to conceive cyber-urban environments in virtual cities. The goal is to create a free-standing virtual city designed by 30 different designers teamed up in 3s. Some teams create meta-archi typologies for this studio, and some designers will join skills to develop a ‘Meta-Urban’ base. Combined, they make a free-standing, fluid virtual urban field and prove the Multi-Author Urban Design to be the directionality for the future of virtual cities.
© PAACADEMY – Studio Mariana Cabugueira / META-Fluid Studio / Group 4 – Sofia Stok – Devyani Jain – Shandon Herft
The designers believe architecture is not just about creating a physical structure but a space that actively addresses the five senses. As architects, they can positively impact better health practices. The starting point was to create a magnificent structure around a stimulating waterfall and enable the user to effectively access all the parts of the building. The designers drew inspiration from a lotus flower, and how it is a positive symbol of health and spirituality encouraged us to adopt the idea of embracing its natural shape in architecture while also fulfilling the functional requirements.
© PAACADEMY – Studio Mariana Cabugueira / META-Fluid Studio / Group 4 – Sofia Stok – Devyani Jain – Shandon Herft
The inspiration for this project was the Lotus flower, symbolic of spiritualism and wellness since ancient times across various cultures. Furthermore, the Lotus represents purity, calmness, and connecting with the inner self. As the petals of the Lotus flower open at sunrise and close at sunset, this beautiful flower symbolizes the circle of birth, purity, calmness, and beauty. Its natural environment is water. The roots of the Lotus are hidden deep in the mud, from which the long stem rises towards the surface of the water, where leaves and flowers float, the same way the tower is designed. The project gives an illusion of a lotus-shaped tower floating above the water and petal-like entrances opened to provide access to visitors.
In the wellness sector of yoga and meditation, spiritual symbols bring us more concrete understandings of abstract philosophies. They add depth to these wellness practices and get poignant lessons from ancient spiritual beliefs. Therefore, the project is named The Unalome because of its ornate and elegant meaning and universal representation of overcoming the cycles of suffering and embracing one’s unique journey through life. Altogether, the Lotus Unalome is the connection between the strength to overcome obstacles and the transformation of one person in life. The designers aimed to create a biophilic design approach by replicating nature experiences in design to reinforce humans’ connection with nature.
The design process started by defining different activities in various types of spaces. As for public areas, Something could be appreciated from inside and outside the tower also, is accessed through the high street. The reservoir on the tower’s base contains and recycles the waterfall’s water. Inside the building is the waterfall, which is the focal point of the design. Also, there is a ramp running around the waterfall, which makes the entire tower accessible to the public and, metaphorically, gives the user a feeling of being elevated. The design contains private areas, like capsules that act as the wellness and therapy rooms which are not accessible to the public, and only the patients can get transported there through tubes. Each capsule has a different function like yoga & meditation, massage, therapeutic rooms, etc.
On the top is a magnificent rooftop accessible by the central pipe, which takes the avatar to the top. The avatar is then dispersed to different capsules through various tubes branching out of the nucleus attached to the central pipe. Capsules are crucial to the design as each capsule has a different function, like yoga & meditation room, spa & sauna room, mud therapy, thermal pool & jet hydrotherapy, physical Therapy Room, and changing rooms. The group also added herbal and medicinal plantations comprising Trees, shrubs, and herbs, parts of which are used to extract and prepare medicines.
The software used for modeling was MAYA. The group started by modeling the skin of the tower along with the main waterfall, keeping in mind the functional requirements of a wellness center, and then eventually evolving their built form over weekly discussions with Mariana. After modeling the basic skeleton of the structure, they designed the petals to open up in different positions. Later, they detailed the Rooftop and created a central pipe within the waterfall for the avatars to move up and be dispersed in their respective capsules through the tubes branching out from the Nucleus. Finally, the Final touches and details created a distinct movement line for the visitor with lights guiding them.
For visualization, They decided to use Unreal Engine 5.0 Epic Games because it enables them to get real-time renders that help them understand and perceive the design better. The latest Unreal version has photorealism, making it hard to believe that even renders could look so realistic. Unreal Engine’s flexibility is one of the primary reasons for its popularity. Whatever the kind of task or however vast the scale, UE can handle that. It is a very versatile software. It is easier to perceive spaces because the avatars can be placed in various scenes and have a human perspective on the project. The emissive and lumen technology introduced in the latest Unreal Engine 5 is a game changer. Unreal Engine seems to be the perfect fit for designing the Metaverse as the renders and interface are futuristic and provide them with all the tools needed to create a futuristic scene. They used Unreal to get an idea of what experiencing the space by a user would like. Designing such a unique space had to be complemented by a unique way of representing it, which is why Unreal was the ideal pick.
The key feature of this design is to create a space that actively interacts with all human senses. The form has various elements that engage different senses and create a positive healing environment. The design is a symbolic representation of the Panchatatva of Wellness while also fulfilling the functional requirements, activating all human senses. Ayurveda believes that the entire universe is composed of five elements; Vayu (Air), Jala (Water), Aakash ( Space or Ether), Prithvi (Earth), and Teja (Fire).
These five elements (referred to as Pancha Mahaboota in Ayurveda) are believed to form the human body’s three basic humors (Tridoshas) in varying combinations. The three humors control the basic physiological functions of the body: Vata dosha (maintains the cellular transport, electrolyte balance, elimination of waste products) Pitta dosha (regulates the body temperature, optic nerve coordination, and hunger and thirst management); and Kapha dosha (It is increased due to sweet and fatty food, and it provides lubrication to the joints for proper functioning).Credits:
5 Ways to Fix Checking Your Browser Error on Cloudflare The solutions from this article were tested by our experts
You should wait it out when Cloudflare checks your browser, as this is often resolved automatically.
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If you’ve sometimes wondered Why is Cloudflare checking my browser? You’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll explain why you get this message in the first place.
Cloudflare offers these services to websites that want to protect their servers from Denial-Of-Service (DDoS) and other types of cyber attacks.
Because of the size and power of Cloudflare, a DDoS attack would not work on their server. This allows other websites to use Cloudflare protection for a fee.
This article will explore the reasons for this happening and answer essential questions.What is Cloudflare checking your browser?
Similar to Bad Behavior, the Cloudflare BIC (Browser Integrity Check) scans for standard HTTP headers that spammers often misuse and block access to your website if it finds any.
It also presents difficulties for user agents with malicious crawlers, bots, or users.
By default, Browser Integrity Check is turned on. You may deactivate the BIC as an administrator using a firewall bypass rule. Additionally, you may selectively activate or disable this functionality for certain areas of your website using a Page Rule.
Why does it say checking your browser before accessing?
If you see the Checking your browser message, it simply means that the website you’re trying to access hired CloudFlare to protect their page against DDoS attacks.
For this reason, a temporary page will be presented to you containing the message mentioned above, and at the same time, the servers are checking if your PC is genuine.How do I disable CloudFlare browser check? 1. Use an alternative browser
We recommend downloading and installing Opera One on your device to protect your user data and block cyberattacks.
The sites protect their data by checking your IP, the type of packet sent to the website server, its size, and the rate at which they are received, along with other details. Opera One offers a free and unlimited VPN, which helps mask your IP address.
Moreover, with Opera One, you get a built-in ad blocker so that you can navigate the internet with fewer distractions.
Let’s have a look at some more key functionalities:
Easy to use search function through open tabs.
Integrated social media accounts.
Free VPN that ensures all your data is kept private.
Battery saver function.
Enjoy navigating the Internet without having your browser crash multiple times!
Free Visit Website2. Scan your PC 3. Disable your browser extensions or add-ons
Now you should verify if it is still checking the browser before granting website access.5. Use a VPN
Using a VPN masks your IP address, so you will not be affected if Cloudflare is restricting a specific IP or region.
Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, are used to link your computer to various locations across the globe safely. Choose one of the best VPNs for Windows if you don’t already use one.Cloudflare checking your browser loop
You should wait patiently when you are stuck in checking your browser before accessing a website. Most of the time, this will correct itself, and you will not have to take action.
If this becomes a loop, you should try any of the solutions listed in this article. A loop means that something is wrong with your browser or computer, and you will not be allowed access to the website until you resolve the problem.
This article answers the question: Why is Cloudflare checking my browser?
We can conclude that the Cloudflare browser check performed by some websites is not damaging in any way to your PC and is only performed to make sure your PC is real.
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What’s in a name? HP goes for an emotion to describe its high-end computers: Envy. Acer conjures aggressiveness for its gaming PCs: Predator. And Dell uses a spelling-challenged acronym for its best PCs: XPS (Xtreme Performance System). What concept does Digital Storm seek to conjure with its pricey ($2200) Virtue midtower gaming rig—moral superiority?
The company’s actual goal isn’t quite that lofty. “We noticed there are not many PC manufacturers designing mid-tower gaming systems with the same ardor and attention that ultra-tower PCs receive,” Digital Storm’s director of product development, Rajeev Kuruppu, said when the Virtue was announced. “As its name suggests, Virtue represents a higher standard of PC gaming, both in terms of aesthetics and performance.” Robert Cardin“Modest” might have been a better name for this PC, given its unassuming enclosure.
To reach that standard, Digital Storm packed an unlocked Intel Core i7-4770K CPU from Intel’s new Haswell family of processors, 16GB of DDR3-1600 memory, and Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 780 discrete graphics card into a compact steel-and-brushed-aluminum case. (The Virtue also comes with Windows 8.) The result is a compact gaming rig that delivered a very respectable Desktop WorldBench 8.1 score of 399. It fell just short of the cheaper Micro Express MicroFlex 47B’s score of 421, though the latter is a full-size tower and has a more powerful video card. Why? While neither manufacturer elected to overclock its system, Micro Express splurged with a 512GB SSD where Digital Storm provides just a 120GB SSD. As a result, the MicroFlex performed much better on our productivity benchmarks.
The Virtue looks much more interesting on the inside.
On the gaming front, the Virtue bested the MicroFlex 47B on both our synthetic and real-world benchmarks, delivering a 3DMark Cloud Gate score of 26214 versus the MicroFlex’s 24864 at a resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels. With real games and visual quality set to Ultra, the Virtue just missed reaching the coveted 60-frames-per-second mark with Dirt Showdown at 2560-by-1600-pixel resolution (it hit 57.3 fps, versus the MicroFlex 47B’s 41.4 fps). The same goes for BioShock Infinite at those settings: Digital Storm’s system reached an impressive 55.4 fps compared with the Micro Express tower’s frame rate of 46.9.
The Virtue can accommodate a second two-slot video card, but not more.
If you’re considering a midtower system, you probably don’t want a plus-size PC sucking up a lot of floor or desktop space. And if you want something small, you probably expect it to be quiet, too. Digital Storm accomplishes that goal in part with a Corsair H100i liquid-cooling system that consists of a CPU water block and a 240mm radiator mounted to the top of the case. This machine won’t keep you up at night or interfere with movie-watching or music-listening sessions.
Despite its smaller case dimensions (17.7 inches high by 17.7 inches long by 8.3 inches wide), the Virtue has plenty of room for expansion inside. If you want higher frame rates with games, throw in a second graphics card (you can configure the Asus Gryphon Z87 micro ATX motherboard to operate with one x16 PCIe 3.0 slot or two x8 PCIe 3.0 slots, and it supports both Nvidia’s SLI and AMD’s CrossFire multi-GPU standards). The system’s 1050-watt power supply, Corsair’s Pro Series HX1050, provides more than enough juice to support such a configuration.
Our test Virtue came with a 1TB, 7200-rpm WD Caviar Black hard drive in addition to a 120GB Corsair Neutron GTX SSD, leaving room for one additional 3.5-inch drive and three more SSDs. A Blu-ray player/DVD burner resides in one of the 5.25-inch drive bays (the second bay is mostly blocked by the radiator mounted on the top of the case).
Two USB 3.0 ports as well as microphone and headphone jacks are conveniently located on the front of the machine. Four additional USB 3.0 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, gigabit ethernet, S/PDIF out, and the usual analog audio ports are around back. The video card’s mounting bracket has ports (one each) for dual-link DVI, single-link DVI, HDMI, and DisplayPort.
The Virtue is jam-packed with quality components that enable it to deliver the performance of machines twice its physical size. Its dimensions and motherboard won’t let you go beyond two video cards, but it delivers solid performance on today’s games with the one card it has now. Gamers will love the Virtue, even if their wallets won’t.
Tower defense games are a new niche in the gaming market. They have gained a significant following, thanks to the extensive marketing done by their developers. A tower defense game involves an arena, typically set in the medieval era (it could be different though), two warring groups, and a lot of weapons. One team protects the fort or city while the other attacks to gain on enemy territory.Tower Defense Games for Windows 11/10
Tower defense games aren’t fighting or shooting games, but strategy games, just like chess. Players need time to master the skill.
Royal Revolt 2
Tower Defense Clash Clans
Tower Defense Clash of Royale
Here is the list of best tower defense games for Windows 11/10 from the Microsoft Store:1] Royal Revolt 2 – Tower Defense 2] Zombie Survival – Addictive Tower Defense
The story of Zombie Survival is as follows. A toxin has infected a city, and all the residents have turned into zombies. The only exception is the special squad. The special squad is assigned the duty to kill the zombies and recapture the city. You can assume the role of either of the eight characters of the special squad. Read more about it on the Microsoft Store here.3] Tower Defense Clash Clans
If you are interested in the strategy more than the graphics, Tower Defense Clash Clans would be the perfect game for you. It has a variety of maps, even more, numerous arenas. In the game, you could fight over forests, wasteland, and mountains. The motive remains the same as for any other tower defense game – saving the kingdom. This extensive game has 45 levels, so you would probably never get bored. Tower Defense Clash Clans can be downloaded from the Microsoft Store.4] League Legends
League Legends is a classic defense game which involves protecting the world from the rise of the dark forces. A revolt has started against the existing government, and your job is to help in suppressing it. Build a fort, train archers, start an army to fight against the evil and win the battle. The game is available on the Microsoft Store.5] Tower Defense Clash of Royale
If you are searching for another tower defense gain based in the medieval era, Tower Defense Clash of Royale would be worth a try. The game involves protecting a kingdom. You are allowed to build up to 12 towers for the purpose, and defeat the barbarians playing as the mystical character you chose. Read more about the game on the Microsoft Store here.6] Survival Arena
Survival Arena is perhaps the most versatile of tower defense games. It has a lot of options for the gaming arenas and a variety of dangerous creatures you might need to encounter. Unlike other tower defense games, Survival Arena doesn’t assign you a single character. You control all the deadly towers, ammunition, heroes, and power-ups. The outcome of the game is totally a result of your capabilities. The game could be downloaded from the Microsoft Store.7] Kingdom Defense
Kingdom Defense is one perfect strategy game. You could rate it low on the graphics and the story, but intellectuals would love it for the mental challenge it offers. The gameplay involves setting up towers on the road leading to the kingdom. As you kill the enemies, you earn points. The points could be used to upgrade the towers, thus strengthening your defense further. You could check more about the game on the Microsoft Store here.8] Olympus Rising – Hero Defense
Have you heard of Mount Olympus? The game Olympus Rising requires you to set a city on top of Mount Olympus and start an army to protect it. The interesting part is that other than men, you could include mystical creatures from Greek mythology as defendants in your forces. The game has amazing graphics and sound effects. It is available on the Microsoft Store.9] Prime World – Defenders
If you are looking for a decent mix of strategy and graphics in a game, Prime World would be worth a try. The game exactly what amateurs need. The gameplay is based in a futuristic world. You need to create towers and use blue laser guns of varying sizes to neutralize the enemy. The towers could be merged to increase their power. The game could be downloaded from the Microsoft Store.10] Royal Revolt
While the second version of Royal Revolt is a hit in the market, the first version set the base. Whether you play its sequel or not, Royal Revolt is worth playing to know the first part of the story. In the game, you assume the role of a young prince who is sent to Bogsmarts to learn magic. Let the rest remain a secret. Play it to know better. The game is available on the Microsoft Store.
Hope you enjoy playing them.
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