Apple is building a $1 billion campus in Austin

Apple is expanding in the U.S. in a big way.
Apple is expanding in the U.S. in a big way.

Image: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Apple is planning a major expansion of its operations across the U.S., including a $1 billion investment in a new campus in Austin, Texas, the company announced Thursday. 

The plan also includes establishing new sites in Seattle, San Diego, Culver City, as well as expanding in cities including Pittsburgh, New York and Boulder, Colorado over the next three years.

Apple plans to create 20,000 new jobs in the U.S. by 2023.

Apple plans to create 20,000 new jobs in the U.S. by 2023.

The new campus, located in North Austin, will measure 133 acres, with 50 acres of preserved open space. Apple’s current facility in Austin accommodates 6,200 people, but the new campus, which will be located less than a mile from the current one, will initially accommodate 5,000 additional people, with the potential to grow this number to 15,000. 

Just like Apple’s Cupertino campus, the new campus in Austin will be powered by 100 percent renewable energy, Apple said. 

Apple's current facility in Austin.

Apple’s current facility in Austin.

“Apple is proud to bring new investment, jobs and opportunity to cities across the United States and to significantly deepen our quarter-century partnership with the city and people of Austin,” Apple CEO Tim Cook, said in a statement. 

Besides this investment, Apple also said it plans to invest $10 billion in data centers in the U.S. over the next five years. 

The company also plans to expand to over 1,000 employees in Seattle, San Diego and Culver City each, while “hundreds” of new jobs will be added in Pittsburgh, New York, Boulder, Boston and Portland, Oregon. In total, Apple plans to increase its workforce in the U.S. from 90,000 to 110,000 by 2023. 

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Airports unite for an ‘Elf on the Shelf’-inspired challenge

The Elf on the Shelf is taking to the skies. 

In a festive move, the Vancouver airport has created an Elf on the Shelf-inspired photoshop challenge. On Monday, they shared a photo of Lil Wayne atop a plane, with the caption, “You’ve heard of Elf on the Shelf, now get ready for…” 

Since then, multiple airports (and airport adjacent companies) have been replying to the tweet with their own heavily doctored photos, using the same simple rhyme scheme. It’s a delightful variation on the Elf on a Shelf rhyming meme that surfaced last year, and the results are a reminder that the internet is actually quite good — sometimes.

There’s Austin Powers on towers:

Cher in the air:

Snoop on a Swoop:

Nicki Minaj on a Fuselage:

James Taylor on a maintenance trailer:

Thor on a Condor:

Ye on BA — not an amazing rhyme, but we’ll accept it.

Clearly, this is the airports’ holiday gift to us all, now we just have to see if it’s enough to get us through the dreary holiday travel season.

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The 10 funniest Netflix comedy specials of 2018

Netflix released too many stand-up comedy specials this year.

Tons of hour-long comedy specials dropped on Netflix throughout 2018, and even a handful of half-hour sets with Netflix’s The Standups, showcasing dozens and dozens (and dozens) of comedians. While there were a bunch that were mediocre and some that were bad, luckily, some of them were great. Amazing, even.

To help you separate the wheat from the chaff, we compiled a list of the 10 best comedy specials to hit Netflix in 2018, including the triumphant returns of a couple of classic comics who haven’t released specials in years, and some truly transcendent material from some lesser-known names.

10. Ali Wong: Hard Knock Wife

After her hilarious special in 2016 won over just about everybody, Ali Wong returned in 2018 with Hard Knock Wife, just as pregnant as she was before, but this time she has the experience of one birth behind her to add a little extra anger behind her comedy. Babies are hard on the human body, as Wong describes in vivid, unflinchingly funny detail, but that doesn’t slow her down from talking about some very adult topics.

9. Natasha Leggero and Moshe Kasher: The Honeymoon Stand Up Special

Natasha Leggero and Moshe Kasher, two great comedians, got married about a year and a half before they filmed this stand-up special, where the two do individual sets and then hang out on stage together to do some crowd work with other couples in the audience. It’s a refreshing concept and the two work wonderfully with each other as they joke about their relationship and forthcoming baby.

8. Hari Kondabolu: Warn Your Relatives

Hari Kondabolu makes his Netflix debut with Warn Your Relatives which, while deeply entwined in our current times, has jokes and points that are incredibly resonant. Kondabolu jokes about racism, comments about Indian stereotypes (including revealing the secret stereotype that they all love mangos), and makes poignant observations while delivering laughs the whole time.

7. Adam Sandler: 100% Fresh

Adam Sandler did a stand-up special and it’s great. Filmed in various venues of varying sizes, 100% Fresh is both hilarious and surprising. The special is filled with a bunch of new comedic songs from Sandler, who made a name for himself on Saturday Night Live with his classic tunes like “The Hanukkah Song” and “Lunch Lady Land.” There is no real structure to 100% Fresh, with no segues to speak of, but Sandler surprises with his chops that remind the world of a time when he made really, really good movies.

6. Aparna Nancherla (The Standups)

Aparna Nancherla does some great powerpoint-based comedy.

Aparna Nancherla does some great powerpoint-based comedy.

Image: Saeed Adyani / netflix

In a tight 30-minute set, Aparna Nancherla covers a lot of ground in classic deadpan style, but then she shifts about halfway through and brings out a television to show off a powerpoint presentation. It’s a great way to tell jokes as she comments on slides that mostly cover smartphone-related grievances and musings about technology. This special is episode 6 of the second season of The Standups.

5. John Mulaney: Kid Gorgeous at Radio City Music Hall

John Mulaney takes over the very classy Radio City Musical Hall.

John Mulaney takes over the very classy Radio City Musical Hall.

The kid is back with another slam dunk of a comedy special, telling story after story at the illustrious Radio City Music Hall. John Mulaney spends the special recounting hilarious tales about Chicago police detective J.J. Bittenbinder, talking about his jealousy of Timothee Chalamet, and expounding on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. His delivery is dramatic and his timing perfect.

4. Todd Glass: Act Happy

With a live band on stage and unmatched energy, Todd Glass delivers his best standup special yet. For the most part it’s classic Glass, commenting with gusto on the minutia of life with the occasional input from the band to punctuate jokes or add a little flair to a story. It works very well, especially with Glass’s quick, dynamic, stream-of-conscious style of comedy.

3. Tig Notaro: Happy To Be Here

In an intimate room in Houston, Tig Notaro blends some of the deepest vulnerability you’ll see in comedy with some of the most casual jokes and delivery that it’s almost discomforting. But at the same time, Notaro masterfully brings you into her life, her feelings, and her thoughts, so it feels like an oddly welcoming hour of material that ends with a joke that goes on for 15 minutes of hilarious suspense.

2. Chris Rock: Tamborine

In his first stand-up special in 10 years, Chris Rock delivered one of his strongest performances to date, cracking jokes about raising his kids in a world rife with racism, politics, religion, and his own life with no reservations. So much of Rock’s content in Tamborine is raw and difficult, but he navigates everything with so much ease and so many deft punchlines that it never loses its steam or its hilarity.

1. Hannah Gadsby: Nanette

Certainly not your typical comedy special, Hannah Gadsby’s Nanette transcends comedy. For much of the hour, Gadsby’s two main focuses are her own identity and comedy itself, and while there are plenty of expert jokes throughout, that’s not what makes Nanette so great. Nanette is propelled by passion, expertise, and fascinating deconstructions of society and comedy. It’s a case against classic comedy stylings, showing the sort of growth that comedy needs to go through to be truly accessible to everyone as a medium as well as impactful to the people who need it.

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Taylor Swift’s ‘Reputation’ tour is coming to Netflix: Watch

Look what we made her do! 

Winding down another ridiculously successful year, Taylor Swift is bringing her big reputation to Netflix this December. For the lucky thousands who snagged tickets to see it in person, it’ll be a glittery walk down memory lane. But for those Swifties who didn’t catch the tour, it’ll finally mean Taylor for all.

Supported by artists Charli XCX, Camila Cabello, and Broods, Swift’s tour visited 7 countries and clinched the title of highest-grossing concert series in United States history. (We’re guessing the spectacular pyrotechnics and gigantic cobra named Karyn had something to do with that…)

So get those snake T-shirts ready. Taylor Swift reputation Stadium Tour is coming to Netflix Dec. 31 at 12:01am PST. Some might say: in the middle of the night, in the middle of my dreams…

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‘Love Actually’ writer answers all your burning questions about your favourite holiday movie

Emma Freud just spilled some sweet 'Love Actually' secrets.
Emma Freud just spilled some sweet ‘Love Actually’ secrets.

Image: PA Images via Getty Images

The holidays are great for many reasons. Time off, celebrations with family, good food, and festive spirit all around. But above all, it’s the time of year where you’re allowed to watch Love Actually as many times as you want without judgement.

The 2003 Christmas classic is two hours and 25 minutes of pure holiday joy. And now, a Love Actually writer has addressed some of the questions and theories fans have long had about the nine intertwined stories that make up the best Christmas movie ever (don’t @ me).

Speaking to news.com.au, the movie’s script editor Emma Freud answered some burning questions about some Love Actually conundrums that you may or may not have pondered yourself.

First of all, does Liam Neeson’s character, the widower Daniel, have a crush on Karen, played by Emma Thompson? The fact that Daniel accidentally calls Claudia Schiffer’s character Carol by the name Karen had fans wondering if this is some kind of Freudian slip. 

“No, that was genuinely a mistake by Richard [Curtis, director of the movie] who had forgotten that Emma Thompson’s character was called Karen,” says Freud. Glad we cleared that up. 

Freud also said that while it technically fits the storyline that the Prime Minister’s chief of staff, Annie, played cupid and brought the PM and his assistant Natalie together (she chooses Natalie’s Christmas card out of a selection of presumably thousands of cards), this was not in the script. 

“That was certainly not in Richard’s mind,” Freud tells news.com.au. “But I think he’ll want to agree with it because that idea does make a lot of sense.”

Finally, Freud addressed one of the cutest scenes in the movie, that could have played out quite differently, had the wrong person answered the door. In the scene where Andrew Lincoln’s  heartbroken character Mark declares his love to Juliet (played by Keira Knightley) in a pretty adorable way, what would have happened if Juliet’s husband had answered the door?

“Maybe he would have given him the CD player as a Christmas gift and hidden the cards behind his back,” says Freud. That would still have been pretty awkward, though. 

One question that still remains unanswered is this: WHY and HOW could Alan Rickman do that to Emma Thompson. We’re still not over that.

h/t news.com.au

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