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Chinese makers roll out wave of Apple watch lookalikes

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A month before Apple Inc.’s smartwatch hits the market, China’s thriving copycat manufacturers are selling lookalikes, some openly advertised as Apple copies. “Apple Smart Watch with Bluetooth Bracelet,” says one vendor on Alibaba Group’s popular Taobao e-commerce website. Photos on the vendor’s page appear to be the real Apple Watch. It says features on the Chinese version include text messaging and a music player. It starts at 288 yuan ($45), or one-eighth the $349 price of the cheapest Apple Watch.…

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Let it go (again)! Disney announces plans for ‘Frozen 2’

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Let it go (on)! The Walt Disney Co. on Thursday announced plans to make a sequel to the animated mega-hit “Frozen.” Bob Iger, Walt Disney Co. chief executive, and John Lasseter, head of Walt Disney Animation Studios, joined in officially announcing “Frozen 2” at the company’s annual shareholders meeting in San Francisco. The sequel had been widely expected for a film that has become a juggernaut for Disney. Since its release in November 2013, “Frozen” has made nearly $1.3 billion…

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‘Going Clear’ documentary unites voices against Scientology

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Mike Rinder had spent virtually all of his life in the Church of Scientology. From the age of 6 he was raised in the church, eventually rising to become its chief spokesman. Everyone he knew was a Scientologist, including his wife, his two children, his mother, his brother and his sister. But after spending more than a year in a disciplinary facility known as “the hole,” where Rinder says he and other Scientology executives were confined, an increasingly disillusioned Rinder…

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Florence Snyder: In loving remembrance of Gus Harwell

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By the time reporters like the Miami Herald‘s Mike Sallah and Carol Marbin Miller and Kimberly Miller of The Palm Beach Post took starter jobs at the Boca Raton News, 1960s-era Publisher Gus Harwell was long-gone to bigger jobs at Knight Newspapers. But his legacy as a reporter’s publisher continued to attract top young talent for years after he moved on to the Tallahassee Democrat and a corporate vice-presidency before retiring in 1995. Harwell, who died last Friday in Port…

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Today on Context Florida: Banned phrases, repeating history, polluted water and high-stakes cheating

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Today on Context Florida: In light of Gov. Rick Scott banning use of the phrases “climate change” and “global warming” by Department of Environmental Protection staff, Daniel Tilson offers a “Top Ten” list of terms not to use in any form if working for the governor. Terms include “Affordable Care Act” (should be…“Obamacare” or “Socialist health care law”), “Voter suppression” (should be …“Fighting voter fraud” or “Election integrity”), “Bad jobs” (should be…“New opportunities” or “Let’s keep working”) and “Middle-class stagnation” (should…

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Matt Gaetz, Alan Williams are ‘dueling bartenders’ for charity Wednesday

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A pair of Florida legislative leaders will be taking a break from official business to act as “dueling celebrity bartenders” for charity tomorrow at a Tallahassee fundraiser. Wednesday, March 11 marks the inaugural Red Dog/Blue Dog Bipartisan Celebrity Bartender event, beginning 6:30 p.m. at Madison Social. Until 8 p.m., Fort Walton Beach Republican state Rep. Matt Gaetz and Democratic state Rep. Alan Williams of Tallahassee will tend bar, competing for tips. The pair will be working cash registers, mixing and serving drinks.…

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Annual Capitol Press skit show skewers Tallahassee elite

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News will take a backseat to humor Tuesday night when the Capitol Press Corps presents the 60th edition of the sometimes Annual Press Skits; a tradition that began when the senior members of Florida’s political/media class were toddlers. “It’s become ingrained in the culture of Tallahassee, said Steve Bousquet, appearing in his 21st Press Skits show. “You almost have to be a part of Tallahassee to get the jokes and they serve as sort of a release valve for lawmakers…

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