The Chicago Journal

Biden Announces Federal Measures, Setting Out More Vaccinations and Testing Sites to Counter Omicron Variant

Source: Kget

On Tuesday, December 21, US President Joe Biden announced the outset of additional federal vaccinations and testing locations to address a rise in COVID-19 cases caused by the Omicron variant. 500 million at-home tests will be made available for free to all Americans beginning in January. 

Biden extended a warning to the unvaccinated, saying that they should have a “good reason to be concerned.” He then provided reassurance to the vaccinated, saying that they can come together for the holidays even with the new variant drifting across the country. 

“No this is not March of 2020,” Biden said in a statement at the White House. “Two hundred million people are fully vaccinated, we’re prepared, we know more.”

Biden specifically remarked that those who are unvaccinated “have a significantly higher risk of ending up in the hospital or even dying.” He is referring to one out of four Americans who have not been fully vaccinated or even those who refused to be vaccinated.

Inclusive in the course of action that was announced on Tuesday is to assign 1,000 military medical work force to aid hospitals that are overloaded with COVID patients. 

Biden’s COVID-19 measures has received a lot of criticism for its heavy attention to vaccines and for miscalculating the effects of politically motivated anti-vaccine drive in the United States. 

As per World Health Organization’s statement, the Omicron variant, which was identified in November, is generating infections to double in 1 ½ to 3 days. There is yet to know what sets it apart from the previous variant Delta’s critical effects. 

Up from under 1% in early December, according to current US data, 73% of all the new cases are rooted from Omicron. 

With the rapid increase of infections, long lines for COVID-19 tests are beginning to emerge in Washington, New York and other cities across the US. People are committed to finding out whether they are infected by the virus or not before spending the holidays with their families. 

“If I don’t I could take a chance of sending it home to my family, and I’m not trying to do that,” said a person waiting in line to get tested in Washington.

The Weeknd Pushes Back Scheduled Tour

Source: GQ

The Weeknd’s much-awaited After Hours Tour has been postponed to a later date again. This is happening after a previous reschedule, which was slated for January. Instead, the tour will now be held in summer 2022, so the musician can do something special and bigger for his fans.

The Weeknd posted a statement on his social media platform on October 18 that said, “Due to the constraints of arenas and the demand for more shows, I want to do something special and bigger for you, my fans, which requires stadiums.” The new tour dates are yet to be announced.

This is the third time The Weeknd is postponing the world tour, and his fans await the elaborate arrangements the musician has to entertain them come summer 2022.  With the recent developments, all previously announced venues and cities have been canceled, with a new list of venues and cities to be unveiled in some months. The tour has now been rebranded as “After Hours Til Dawn” Stadium Tour. This points to the fact that the tour will be held in Europe, North America, South America, Australia, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.

Tickets previously sold for the tour will be invalid for the new dates and venues, with punters set to receive automatic refunds. The Weeknd’s statement also noted that “all ticket holders will receive priority when purchasing tickets for the new tour dates when they go on sale.” The announcement came with a short teaser of the tour, which featured the snippet of an untitled song. Earlier in the month, The Weeknd stated that his forthcoming album, his fifth studio album, was almost completed. He also teased that only “a couple of characters are missing to complete the narrative.” He previously announced that the album would be completed by the end of August.

Earlier this year, in August, The Weeknd shared his album’s lead single, “Take My Breath.” In a GQ interview with Mark Anthony recently, he described his next record as the album he has always wanted to make. His lead single was released alongside a film clip slated for release in IMAX theatres, but due to epilepsy concerns, it was pulled immediately.

The Weeknd, who has publicly cited Kanye West, Nas, and Britney Spears as his inspirations, was named a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations this month, a title he has expressed his gratitude for and said was a “profound honor.”

MK Rodriguez Makes History as the First Transgender to Secure a Golden Globe Award

Photo: Variety

It is time to pay attention to another notable event in entertainment history as another first time has occured. The world is swiftly transitioning into an accepting environment for different kinds of people with different races and different sexualities.

On Sunday, Michaela Jaé “Mj” Rodriguez, an American actress and singer, secured a Golden Globe Award as best actress in a TV drama for her portrayal of Blanca, a housemother and nurse, on the show “Pose.” 

This is the first time in history that a transgender act has taken home a Golden Globe. And this marks the first Golden Globe win for “Pose,” which showed last 2018. 

However, this is not the first time that Rodriguez marked a notable event in history. Rodriguez became the first transgender performer to be nominated in the Emmys for a lead acting last summer. But Rodriguez did not win the award. 

Though “Pose” has been commended for their enormous transgender casting in a series, the show’s acts has been forthright about the insufficient recognition they have been receiving. 

“Pose” co-stars Indya Moore and Angelica Ross voiced out their opinions about Emmys failing to notice the show’s Black transgender cast in the list of nominees in 2020. 

“Something abt trans ppl not being honored on a show abt trans ppl who created a culture to honor ourselves bc the world doesn’t,” says Moore in a tweet, who portrays Angel Evangelista, a transgender sex worker pursuing a career as a fashion model. “Let’s call it cognitive cissonance.”

Angelica Ross, who portrayed Black transgender woman Candy Ferocity, retweeted Moore’s statement and posted on Instagram about the Black trans overlook. 

“I want you to know from the jump that these tears are not about an award or a nomination,” Ross stated. “Ultimately, I need y’all to understand that I’m so tired — those of you who know me know I’m not just working on screen or behind screen but I’m working around the clock to get our society to value trans lives and Black trans lives.”

Rodriguez announced her win on social media Sunday and commended fellow nominees Uzo Aduba, Jennifer Aniston, Christine Baranski, and Elisabeth Moss.

Otaku Origins Brings the World of Anime to the Solana Blockchain

The NFT industry has seen massive growth in recent years. This meteoric rise in the industry has given birth to several projects coming out of the woodwork set in various niche communities. One prominent and highly anticipated NFT project is geared towards fans of the wildly popular anime industry, with fans dubbed as Otaku or anime lovers. 

Anime is a massively popular art form that has drawn a loyal audience from all over the world. Fans of the art form each have their own unique tastes with the plethora of anime titles that are readily available worldwide. Otaku Origins is an NFT project made by Otakus for Otakus. It is geared towards fans of this cultural art form that is sweeping the globe and mainstream media.

The Otaku Origins NFT collection consists of 5,000 unique anime-inspired digital art pieces for investors and collectors to enjoy. Each token is aesthetically designed to pay homage to popular anime titles with themes and designs relating to specific characters. These designs and attributes range from popular anime titles such as One Piece, Naruto, Fullmetal Alchemist, Black Clover, and Dragon Ball, to name a few. The NFTs will be developed and stored on the Solana blockchain featuring 6 legendary mints, which will soon be expanding as per the development timeline.

“We are not looking to imitate what already exists but improve on the best concepts within the NFT ecosystem,” explained the project developers. “Innovation is our number one goal, and we have pushed ourselves to embed functional as well as creative uniqueness into Otaku Origins. Not only will each Otaku have individual traits and yield different weapons, but they will also have unique stances and poses. This will elevate the artwork as well as the value of our NFTs,” they added.

Each digital art piece has unique attributes that signify its rarity, which in turn affects the value of each token. The Otaku Origins founders are planning to introduce new significant variations between each token, allowing them to create a new rarity metric that remains unexplored among procedurally generated NFT projects today.

The project is positioned to change the game within the NFT market with its authentic anime illustrations, well-designed backgrounds, and high-quality production. Ultimately, Otaku Origins aims to be a community-oriented project by establishing its own Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO). 

“Moving forward, we want to become the first indie manga publishing DAO, which will focus on finding and sponsoring indie authors and artists to help jump-start their own creative goals and stories,” explained the founders. On their mission to create the first independent publishing within the NFT space, the founders are already looking for talented storytellers and artists who want to showcase their talent in the digital landscape.

Holders of the NFT will be able to vote on the story elements of the upcoming manga. This includes the fight outcomes, plot points, character details, and the overall decision-making of the venture. The manga is on a mission to engage its holders in a unique story revolving around the otakus and their fight to escape the Otakuverse. The first chapter of the manga is already in production at the moment, and it is poised to dominate the world of manga through the efforts of its loyal community. 

Additionally, Otaku Origins is also poised to launch its own P2E game, partnering with a Canadian game development company to produce the beta phase. The game will feature full 3D fighting mechanics and an immersive story, allowing for a totally unique NFT experience that has never been seen before in the industry.

“Our target audience is a community of Otakus that wants to be directly involved in influencing the story of our comic book series, funding emerging indie artists, and benefit from our P2E gaming mechanics,” shared the developers. The Otaku Origins NFT will be available for minting on the Solana blockchain from February 2 to 8. The founders are currently drawing a whitelist for the project’s pre-sale, where selected individuals will be able to acquire the NFTs at reduced prices and receive additional airdrops for future collections.

There’s nowhere to go but up for the Otaku Origins project. Anime has been such a massive global phenomenon, and fans of the art form are poised to keep growing as more and more unique and remarkable titles are released. 

To know more about Otaku Origins, make sure to visit the project’s official website. For more live updates, join the NFT’s Discord server.

From Child Actress to Class-Action Lawsuit Lawyer, Kelly Hyman Has Done It All

Kelly Hyman is well-known for her extraordinary and multifaceted career. Born in Miami Beach, Florida, Kelly is an Australian American raised by a single mother in the busy streets of New York City but later on moved to Southern California. The Floridian native started her career in the entertainment industry at just five years old, where she appeared in numerous print ads, commercials, and television shows. It was also there that she met her childhood best friend, Shalane McCall, and they were simultaneously nominated for a Youth in Film Award. 

Kelly was known for portraying numerous characters in several TV shows, including playing the role of Loretta on the soap opera The Young and the Restless, Normal Fell from Three’s Company, as well as Donna in the 1988 film Doin’ Time on Planet Earth, where she worked alongside Batman’s Adam West. Aside from her acting career, Kelly also performed off-Broadway in New York City and lent her voice to several ads, including the distinguished Kit Kat “Give Me A Break” commercial. 

Later on, Kelly wholly focused on her education despite still being in the entertainment industry and eventually earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). While traversing her busy college life, Kelly took the opportunity to become an intern at the Office of Presidential Inquiries at The White House. Subsequently, in 2000, she received a Master of Arts in Communication at Barry University. Finally, in 2003, she was awarded the Juris Doctor Degree with honors from the University of Florida College of Law. 

The former actress’s remarkable academic background opened many doors for her. It didn’t take long before she took on more career-defying jobs, including working for well-known law firms such as Kozyak, Tropin & Throckmorton Law Firm, and Searcy, Denney, Scarola, Barnhart & Shipley PA. Additionally, she served as a law clerk for the former U.S. District Court Judge Brian Sandoval, Judge Robert Mark for the United States Bankruptcy Court, and the esteemed Judge Wendell Graham for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit Court. 

In 2017, Kelly was elected President of the Federal Bar Association in Palm Beach County, Florida. She was also on the Board of Directors for Dress for Success, Palm Beach. As a lifelong democratic, the distinguished lawyer committed herself for the election and reelection of President Barack Obama back in the days and volunteered for the democratic party as a poll watcher to protect voters’ rights during the then-presidential election.

Despite her departure from the entertainment business, Kelly continues to appear on television as a legal analyst and has appeared numerous times on Law & Crime, Court TV, OANN, as well as with Fox and Friends First. She’s also made countless appearances on BBC, ABC, NBC LX, The Ingraham Angle, I24 News, Newsmax TV, and so much more.

Currently, Kelly remains a democratic political commentator and lawyer, where she focuses mainly on class actions and mass tort litigation, with Forbes calling her the “modern-day Erin Brockovich.” Adding to her already long list of achievements, Kelly is also the author of two politically-driven books called Top Ten Reasons To Drop Trump in 2020 and Build Back Better: 100 Days of the Biden Administration and Beyond. In addition, the established lawyer is married to Paul G. Hyman Jr., a judge for the United States Bankruptcy Court.

To learn more about Kelly and her accomplishments, check out her website.

Dune: Part Two Officially Greenlit with an October 2023 Release Date

Source: Warner Bros.

Denis Villeneuve’s epic two-part adaptation of Frank Herbert’s sci-fi novel Dune has officially been greenlit by Warner Bros. and Legendary Entertainment, sending fans into a positive frenzy as the future of the film franchise was hanging on the official decision. Villeneuve will finally get to fulfill his plans of a two-part adaptation following an opening weekend at the box office of $41 million-plus stateside.

Legendary Entertainment has officially given the greenlight to the sequel of the first film, which was released on October 22 in theaters and on HBO Max. The first film ended on a cliffhanger as Paul Atreides joined the Fremen at the film’s conclusion to bring peace to the desert planet of Arrakis. The sequel is scheduled to release in theaters on October 20, 2023, as per Warner Bros.

Globally,  Dune: Part One has earned $220 million and counting at the box office. Warner Bros. was waiting to see how well the film performed at the box office and on WarnerMedia-owned HBO Max before giving the official greenlight to director Denis Villeneuve, who’s already well at work on the script for the highly anticipated sequel.

“I just received news from Legendary that we are officially moving forward with ‘Dune: Part Two,’” Villeneuve said in a statement. “It was a dream of mine to adapt Frank Herbert’s ‘Dune,’ and I have the fans, the cast, and crew, Legendary and Warner Bros. to thank for supporting this dream. This is only the beginning.”

Chairman of Warner Bros. Pictures, Toby Emmerich, added, “Denis Villeneuve has crafted a film that is both visually extraordinary and emotionally transporting, as evidenced by its global success both critically and at the box office. We are thrilled to continue on this journey with Denis and his cast and crew and our partners at Legendary, and we can’t wait to bring the next chapter of this epic tale to theaters in October 2023.”

Throughout the film’s long-running press tour, beginning while the film was in post-production during the lockdown and continuing through the film’s world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, Villeneuve remained confident he would get the chance to make Part Two. As the director told Total Film magazine, “There’s no such thing as ‘Dune 1’ and ‘Dune 2.’ It’s ‘Dune: Part One’ and ‘Dune: Part Two.’” Villeneuve said that he only agreed to direct Herbert’s novel for Warner Bros. and Legendary if they let him split the first book into two parts. It would have to take a total box-office disaster for “Part Two” not to get made. Earlier this week, Warner Bros. CEO Ann Sarnoff all but confirmed that the sequel was definitely happening. 

“We have been hearing in the past few decades that it’s not possible to adapt this book and that it’s an impossible task. I think that in the back of the mind of the studio, it’s still the same!” Villeneuve recently told Total Film. “The first thing was to prove that there was a beautiful, popular movie that can exist, and I think that I proved that — everybody at Warner Bros and Legendary, they are 100 percent behind the project. They feel that it would need a really bad outcome at the box office to not have a ‘Dune: Part Two’ because they love the movie. They are proud of the movie, so they want the movie to move forward. And they still did half of it. So you know, I’m very optimistic.”

Fans will finally get to see the epic conclusion of Villeneuve’s epic sci-fi adaptation, and it comes as no surprise to many from the community as they thoroughly enjoyed the director’s magnificent take on the source material. With all of the setup that the first film brought to the story, audiences will be in for a wild ride for the sequel to come in October 2023.

Upcoming Project Chroma World Prepares to Push the Boundaries of Art Within the NFT Space

As the world evolved through the centuries, the traditional arts have also evolved. From cave paintings to primed canvas, artists have always found a way to innovate their medium to suit their means of expressing themselves or their message. In addition, modern-day artists have thrived thanks to technological innovation, bringing a new wave of artists in the digital age.

Non-fungible tokens have been pegged to become the next step towards art, coming in various forms that range from visual arts to music and typography in the form of social media posts. However, most NFT projects opted for digital art as their medium, believing it was the best way to reach out to their audience. Chroma World is a project that strives to bring the best of both traditional and digital art into the NFT space.

Chroma World is an upcoming project that celebrates traditional art, specifically the abstract movement. For years, the art movement that artist Wassily Kandinsky popularized had captivated and puzzled viewers, including the developers of Chroma World. However, they decided to take their fascination to the next level by implementing abstract works into NFTs.

“Chroma World is a place welcome to all, especially if you love weird-looking abstract art,” said the Chroma World developers. “Nothing needs to make sense when it comes to expressing your imagination. One of our main goals is to connect digital and physical art, which will be done in a variety of ways.”

Dubbing the first phase of their roadmap, “Season One,” the project will consist of 9,001 NFTs called ‘Abstractars,’ which will be built on the Ethereum blockchain. The collection has been described as something “that is different, but in a way, makes sense.” 

The Abstractars will include over 250 hand-drawn traits used to generate each unique piece. The collection will feature abstract art and include pixel art, simplistic, clean, grayscale, and rare gold traits, among many others. In addition, the art will feature graffiti outlines of humans, animals, robots, and pop culture set against a colorful background of chaotic yet hypnotic colors.

While most NFTs tend to focus more on the central object, Abstractars will take its viewer’s attention to the background, blending in with the character.

“The emphasis on the collection is aimed at the background artwork,” explained the developers. “Each background is hand created and are all very different. Therefore, they will come in a variety of styles and colors.”

Chroma World will be the first collection in the NFT space to create a unique set of works, pushing boundaries in the online world. It will also be paying tribute to some of the fantastic communities in the space and can be seen as an extension to the holder’s previous collection. Additionally, Chroma World will also have a feature program that connects and supports other creators across the globe, helping a united community grow while inspiring people.

Learn more about Chroma World by visiting their official website. You can also stay updated by following them on Twitter, TikTok, and Instagram or joining their official Discord server and Telegram group.

Axiom Chiropractic Drawing Attention to Chiropractic Service and Serving Patients with the Best Care

Optimal health is non-negotiable, and the process of achieving that cuts across taking care of every part of the body. So for Dr. Tyler Hartley and Dr. Megan Hullihen, establishing Axiom Chiropractic was a needed move as it gave them the chance to carry out life-changing, powerful and healing work every day.

Through Axiom Chiropractic, the experienced medical professionals aim to show the world that chiropractic is more than fixing neck and back pain. In Dr. Tyler’s words, “It’s a holistic approach to health designed to improve overall body function and optimize performance.” At Axiom Chiropractic, health is a top priority, and all the medical professionals working at the facility understand that fact. Dr. Tyler and Dr. Megan also make sure to pass along the necessary education to keep patients up-to-date about the right decisions they need to make to ensure optimal health for their bodies.

Axiom Chiropractic’s operation thrives on the individualized approach to treating patients. “We understand that no two people are the same. So we take the time to discover your wants, but more importantly your needs, and deliver the best results in the Charlotte area,” Dr. Tyler said. 

The practice utilizes the most specific full-spine chiropractic adjusting technique called the Gonstead Method, which applies five different criteria to identify the cause of a health concern. This method has been highly successful and has played a massive role in the high level of trust that many patients have in Axiom Chiropractic.

“We believe that the amazing results we achieve are credited to detailed nervous system exams, as well as attention to specificity when delivering the chiropractic adjustment. When performed correctly, the chiropractic adjustment will alleviate nerve pressure at the root and allow proper efferent and afferent signals between the brain and body to take place,” Dr. Megan Hullihen explained.

Axiom Chiropractic has plugged itself to the center of educating the entire Charlotte community and beyond about where health truly comes from and connecting the bridge between symptoms or chronic health concerns and how chiropractic procedures correct those problems. In receiving this education, patients get both evidence and knowledge to understand everything about their health and what they need to do or not do.

“We always use objective measurements before we perform any adjustment. We must know when to correct, but even more importantly, we need to know when not to adjust. We cannot juxtapose one for the other to avoid issues,” Dr. Tyler Hartley shared.Over the next few years, Dr. Tyler Hartley and Dr. Megan hope to make Axiom Chiropractic’s office one of the busiest in the greater Charlotte area, focusing on families, pediatrics and athletes. The ultimate goal is to reduce the use of pharmaceuticals and surgery to the barest minimum while putting the power back in the patients’ hands regarding decisions about their health.

How the APE-X Meme Community Guarantees Liquidity

APE-X provides high-risk investment opportunities while developing an ecosystem that protects the welfare of all its holders. Seeing that more and more crypto enthusiasts are becoming aggressive in their investment choices, the creators of the community deemed it vital to establish a niche crypto meme community that has the potential to grow significantly over time. While several coins are inclined towards promoting dogs, such as Shiba Inus, DOGECoin, and SHIB, APE-X is finding it more profitable to highlight the qualities of apes. 

5% of all transactions within the APE-X is compiled in the token contract. The moment it is collected, half of it is automatically sold to BUSD. The remaining half of APE-X and the recently acquired BUSD will be put together and redirected to the liquidity pool. Apart from liquidity generation, investors are also attracted to the community frictionless yield, which makes things a lot easier for crypto enthusiasts who invested their money in the token space. 4% of all transactions will be automatically distributed to all APE-X holders according to their appropriate proportion. This means that those who own more tokens will get higher yields. Investors no longer need to waste gas and do staking. They only need to wait for the benefits of their investment. 

“We believe that there is a cultural revolution currently happening in finance. This revolution is being fuelled by people who want to take their finances into their own hands and have the ability to access financial instruments with high investment potential, which are typically only reserved for institutions and high net worth individuals,” the community’s creators shared. “A subset of these people are what we refer to as apes – those that invest in tokens solely for the reason that they connect with the meme of the token and it offers the potential for high ROI.”

Undoubtedly, APE-X has captured a special market of investors who find the apes engaging and fun. They no longer have to ride on the present popularity of the dog crypto memes but instead created a whole new niche that future animal meme communities can also tap into. 

Currently, APE-X is in its second phase, and holders will see the initiative to apply for new exchange listings, the development of the community’s DAO App, the building of partnerships with big social media platforms, and the launching of the APE-X merchandise store. 

They are also hosting a massive giveaway for a Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT to one lucky holder of the APE-X token. Full details are available on their website. The third phase is the part where the community votes for the initiatives to be undertaken in 2022. 

Phase 3, on the other hand, will involve the community in voting for its 2022 initiatives. This stage will also see the forging of partnerships with artists for an NFT series and more exchange listings. 

Learn more about APE-X by visiting its website. Follow the community on Twitter to get updates on the latest developments. Check it out on Instagram for more information on the community. 

uClouldlink Introduces Connectivity Enhancers, HyperConn™ and Numen

Although internet speed is one of the essential factors in a digital network experience, signal strength and how that data is delivered depends on numerous things, including proximity to servers. This has proven a significant challenge for internet service providers and companies who offer connectivity until uCloudlink came up with functional and swift connection access with minimal downtime known as HyperConn™ . 

uCloudlink is a leading data traffic sharing platform globally that is pioneering innovative techniques through its CloudSIM technology; the company offers easy and flexible ultra-high-speed internet connectivity for mobile, home, and office users using a network of more than 200 service providers located across over 140 countries and regions. 

uCloudlink provides consumers with not just fast connections but also high performance, so they’re free from worries about their connection dropping down or getting interrupted during use- even at peak hours when others have problems reaching certain sites due to traffic congestion caused by other users loading up pages simultaneously trying out streaming services like Netflix.

By leveraging a specific Artificial Intelligence to determine the most efficient network coverage based on a user’s present location, internet usage, and performance of all available broadband networks, HyperConn™ guarantees its users a great, if not the best, network connection possible at all times. Furthermore, through its robust and seamless switching, HyperConn™ ensures that the given network will never fail regardless of the open applications, how many people are utilizing the network connection, or where the user is.

uCloudlink’s products and services are known for delivering unique value propositions to mobile data users, handset companies, MVNOs (Mobile Virtual Network Operators). The company leverages its innovative CloudSIM technology and architecture, the foundation of our business model that redefines how people connect with their phones.

A new approach we take into account when designing these solutions ensures reliable connectivity at consistently high speeds while also providing competitive pricing so you can enjoy a seamless experience on your device no matter where or what type it may be, including smartphones as well as laptops, computers and tablets.

While describing the technology’s functionality, “Imagine a car being able to freely make use of all the lanes available on a highway without needing to stop for tolls and other barricades. This level of flexibility and freedom is what we offer with HyperConn™. We believe that our forward-thinking solution will help the world prepare for whatever may come our way in the future and move us one step closer to sharing without limitations.” CEO and Director Chaohui Chen said.

“HyperConn™ is a groundbreaking technological advancement,” Chen added and he describes it as the result of years of a collective effort from our hundred-strong R&D team

Along with HyperConn™, uCloudlink has introduced Numen, a world-first – an ultra-fast 5G mobile WiFI device that can connect to all signals available, including fixed broadband WiFi and 4g/5g data networks. In addition, it will constantly monitor your connection for optimum performance, so you never have any more problems with weak or congested links!

Learn more about HyperConn™ and uCloudlink on their website.