Practicing the Advanced 7 Minute Workout

A week ago the New York Times came out with a free mobile app for the popular Scientific 7-Minute Workout and the new Advanced 7-Minute Workout.  The App itself is interesting for how it installs and is used on a Desktop as well as a phone.  This is a very nicely designed piece of software and should be on everyone’s plate to see.  The workout is pretty cool as well. 

The app offers a step-by-step guide to both 7-minute workouts, offering animated illustrations of the exercises, as well as a timer and audio cues to help you get the most out of your seven minutes.

How To Install

On an iOS device, open this link. Tap the “Bookmark” button, then “Add to Home Screen.” The app is then usable even if you don’t have an Internet connection.

On an Android device, use the Chrome browser to open this link. Then tap the “Menu” button, then “Add to Home Screen.” The app is then usable even if you don’t have an Internet connection.

To use on a desktop or other device, click here.

How to Make Money with Minecraft

Read the article on titled “Minecraft Stars on YouTube Share Secrets to Their Celebrity”

Videos by Mitchell Hughes, a top Minecraft YouTuber, often consist of him and his friends exchanging jokes as they play survival games with other online players. CreditEve Edelheit for The New York Times

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Excerpts of the article

YouTube videos about Minecraft are giant hits, even though the game’s blocky graphics don’t seem to scream excitement. Millions of people watch players narrate while they fly, hike and excavate Minecraft’s virtual world, which is akin to an open world digital Lego set. The Minecraft narrators – often men in their early 20s with effervescent personalities – act as solo tour guides as they build skyscrapers, ships and other structures or engage in battles of survival.


YouTube, which is owned by Google, says Minecraft is the most popular game of all time on the site, ahead of Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty, two major video game franchises. Last year, “Minecraft” was the second most searched term on YouTube, after “Frozen.” The popularity of the game explains why Microsoft paid $2.5 billion last year to acquire Mojang, the Swedish company that created Minecraft in 2009.

“The amazing thing about using this software is you can produce an amazing video every day with big production values,” said Joseph Garrett, a master of the Minecraft YouTube genre who uses the handle Stampy. “If you were doing live action shows that could be done, but it wouldn’t be as easy.”

Based on publicly available audience numbers and typical advertising rates, Peter Warman, an analyst with the market research firm Newzoo, estimates there are eight to 10 Minecraft YouTubers who earn over $1 million a year.

To get a better grasp on what it takes to be a successful Minecraft YouTuber — and, by extension, better understand what makes the videos so popular….

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The Selfie Stick Takes Manhattan


This is the second of TWO articles for use in class.  As always, if you have free views left on NYTimes read the comments and related articles on

Selfies Get a Little Help
Selfies Get a Little Help

CreditHiroko Masuike/The New York Times

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If the throngs of tourists who congregate each December in Times Square and Rockefeller Plaza were not conspicuous enough, the selfie stick took matters to new heights this holiday season. On the last day of the year, you could barely walk through New York’s most touristy areas without getting poked or prodded by the latest craze in digital accessories.

The selfie stick is, as the name suggests, an extendable rod to which a smartphone can be affixed for selfies to be snapped from a longer-than-an-arm’s distance. In a culture where technological advances are often used to help humans connect more deeply to their own narcissism, this is an important innovation.

“It’s one of those things where we were like, ‘We should have thought of this ourselves!’ ” said Ivonne Rivera, 24, who was about to pose for a selfie-sticked selfie in Times Square last Tuesday.

Before leaving Los Angeles for a visit to New York, she and her sister Sophia Ortega, 21, bought two sticks, each for about $25. They have used the contraptions to take self-portraits wherever they have walked and when seeing the sights from a tour bus. “They’re really sturdy so no one can knock the phone off the stick, which is good because that would ruin the whole trip,” Ms. Rivera said.

Approaching tourists in Times Square who were mid-selfie-stick selfie with questions about the apparatus resulted in a few general reactions: visible embarrassment, versions of “I don’t speak English” and requests to join in a group self-portrait.

Rima Slim, who was visiting the United States, said, “You see these all the time in Dubai but here, people stop you to say, ‘What is that?’ ” Her husband, Ibrahim, was holding a GoPro rod with an encased video camera as he and his family walked through Times Square. They also relied on it a lot when visiting California earlier in December, they said. “We used it to take videos of us on all the rides at Disneyland,” Mr. Slim said.

The phone-holding rods have been available in the United States since at least 2011 when they were offered by iStabilizer, a company near Park City, Utah. Noah Rasheta, iStabilizer’s chief executive, said he began to sell tripods for smartphones in 2010 after wishing he could take an iPhone video of himself playing with his young son at a park. On a trip to Asia in 2011 to meet with parts suppliers for the tripod, he found himself frustrated by the quality of the selfies he took while sightseeing.

“I hated that my arm was in every picture,” he said.

He and his suppliers got to work on a selfie stick right away. Called the Monopod, the device retails for about $35. About 40,000 have been sold since 2012, he said, with about 13 percent of sales occurring just last month. The current critical mass, Mr. Rasheta said, is a result of the average Joe’s interest in capturing the kind of in-action footage made popular online byGoPro videos. “It’s no longer just the vain teenager who wants to do the duck-face picture,” he said.

Mark Mizrahi, 20, and Jaeda Olivieri, 19, said that they had come to Rockefeller Plaza from New Jersey just to take a selfie with Mr. Mizrahi’s new GoPro camera and rod. “We wanted a picture of us with the tree,” Ms. Olivieri said.

As they smiled and posed, curious bystanders asked Mr. Mizrahi to demonstrate how the rod folded up and unfurled. He had just returned from a trip to Barcelona, Spain, where, he said, the selfie sticks were even more ubiquitous than in Midtown Manhattan. “I pulled it out one time and swerved around and a passing bus almost trashed it, but the video came out awesome,” Mr. Mizrahi said.

Outside NY Gift, a souvenir store on West 42nd Street, a mannequin was wearing a neon NYC sweatshirt and a green foam Statue of Libertyheadpiece as it held a selfie rod in its hand. “It’s working very well,” said Sunam Sherpa, a store clerk who was busy showing features of the gadget to tourists.  “You don’t have to ask anyone for a favor to take your picture,” he said. “And that’s very New York not to bother anyone.”