Friday, October 17, 2008



She was the first monarch to send an e-mail. She has her own Web site. And on Thursday, Queen Elizabeth II uploaded video to YouTube during a visit to Google's British headquarters.

The company celebrated the queen's visit by creating a special version of its home page, which featured a silhouette of her head as the second G and a regal crown atop the E in their logo.

During the visit, the queen and her husband, Prince Philip, saw a demonstration of the company's technology and met schoolchildren who won a competition to design their own Google doodles – what the Mountain View, California-based company calls special editions of their blue, red, yellow and green logo.

The royal couple met users of the Google-owned YouTube video Web site, including Peter Oakley, an 81-year-old known as Geriatric1927. Oakley's videos on the site earned him a nomination for a YouTube award in 2006.

The queen herself has a presence on YouTube – she launched the Royal Channel in December. There are 54 videos on the channel, which range from the Queen's 1957 Christmas message to a day in the life of Prince Charles. On Thursday, she uploaded archive footage to the channel of a 1969 reception at Buckingham Palace for British Olympians.


Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle led a delegation to the Denver Mint on Tuesday for the striking of the first of that state's commemorative quarters — and the last in a 10-year series commemorating the 50 states.

Hawaii's coin features monarch King Kamehameha I stretching a hand toward the eight major Hawaiian Islands. Inscribed is the state motto, „The Life of the Land is Perpetuated in Righteousness,“ in the Hawaiian language. It will go into circulation Nov. 3.

„It's our vision for Hawaii's future, and it shows our respect for all the land,“ Lingle said of the quarter's design and motto. „And it also shows that although there are many islands, we're united as a state.“

Kamehameha ruled from 1782 to 1819 and unified the islands. The Kingdom of Hawaii that he established in 1810 retained its independence, except for a five-month British occupation in 1843, until it was annexed by the United States in 1898. It was this legacy that earned Kamehameha the epithet „Napoleon of the Pacific.“

Mint officials expect about 520 million Hawaii quarters to be produced.


Celebrating Dashain, the main festival of Nepali Hindus, the former royal couple, King Gyanendra and Queen Komal offered ‘tika’ (a mixture of rice, vermillion, and curd) to citizens in the capital, on October 9.

Around 5,000 of people had gathered at the king’s private residence in Kathmandu and waited for several hours to get the blessings from the former royal couple.

Earlier, the kings used to formally offer Dashain blessings to ministers, officials and the general public; but now that monarchy is abolished in the country, the ex-royal couple organised the programme at their private residence.

Kamal Thapa, former Home Minister and now chairperson of Rastriya Prajatantra Party Nepal, after receiving the blessings, told journalists that although there is no technical and constituional existence of monarchy in Nepal, it is still alive in the hearts of Nepalese people.

„At Dashain it's traditional to get blessings from your guardians and I still think of the king and queen as my guardians,“ said Ram Bahadur Bishworkarma, 45, a jeweller, who waited more than an hour and a half to see the former royals.

„I still have immense respect for them and think of them as my king and queen.“
Gyanendra has been living as a virtual recluse in a former hunting lodge on the outskirts of the capital since his reign was ended by a Maoist-dominated assembly in May.

But last Thursday he looked relaxed and happy as he placed tika, blessings in the form of red paste, on the foreheads of hundreds of supporters.

Earlier in the day, Nepal's republican president held a similar event at his residence on the outskirts of Kathmandu, where he offered tika to about eight hundred people.

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