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They made us cry, they made us laugh and sometimes they made us do both at the same time. Just how many hours have we wasted (read cherished), ruminating about their inner feelings and predicting their next course of action? What do these ladies have that keeps us glued to the screen? While on that thought, check out our own hottest picks of the year.

Ellen Pompeo

1.Ellen Pompeo as Dr Meredith Gray in “Grey's Anatomy”
The pretty lady has us all captivated by her portrayal of a new intern in Seattle Grace Hospital. She does an amazing job juggling her grueling medical career and an even more grueling love life, while providing us with all the charms of Grey's Anatomy. Well we know Meredith is smart, funny, emotional and sometimes, utterly confused but the woman behind the role is someone who is betting bigger and bigger in the fame list. After Pompeo got her start as an actress with a pair of appearances in the popular television drama Law & Order, she has appeared in many films such as Steven Spielberg's Catch Me If You Can (2002) , the comic-book adaptation Daredevil (2003) and had an Oscar-worthy performance in Moonlight Mile(2002), which many critics and fans consider to be her breakout role.

Evangeline Lilly

2.Evangeline Lilly as Kate Austin in “Lost”
Those of us who are hooked onto this so one of a kind, incredibly awesome series, are, without doubt, ardent fans of this intriguing character. Evangeline Lily plays Kate, the passionate, caring and mysterious lead actress whose courage knows no barriers and who carries a dark past which she is less willing to reveal. This charming Canadian says her Lost character, Kate and she are very much alike. Maybe that's why she does it so well and earned a place as one of our most favourite and loved TV actors.


Teri Hatcher

3.Teri Hatcher as Susan Mayer in “Desperate Housewives”
Widely considered as one of Hollywood's hottest actresses, Teri Hatcher has enthralled us numerous times in numerous roles. Who can forget her as the beautiful Lois Lane in “Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman”? After landing remembered roles in many films including “Tango and Cash”, “The Big Picture”, “Spy Kids” and “Tomorrow Never Dies”, Hatcher finally hit the jackpot when she was cast as a lead in ABC's comedy “Desperate Housewives”. Her role as a clumsy, single mom, searching for love amid the sordid happenings of her suburban neighbourhood, has won her the 2005 Golden Globe Award (Best Actress in a Leading Role, Musical or Comedy, Television), as well as a 2005 Screen Actors Guild Award (Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series) and a 2005 Television Critics Award.

Hilary Burton

4.Hilary Burton as Peyton Sawyer in “One Tree Hill”
The beautiful Hilary Burton with her beautiful curly blonde locks has us charmed by her portrayal of the fiercely independent Peyton Sawyer in One Tree Hill. In my opinion, the show owes a big part of its worldwide success to the lovable Peyton and the magnetic and attractive Burton. Hilary Burton made her entry in showbiz as one of MTV's hottest VJs and made her film debut in 2005's “Our Very Own”, a comedy/drama set in Nashville, Tennesse, in the 1970s.


Sandra Oh

5. Sandra Oh as Dr. Christina Yang in “Grey's Anatomy”
Meet Christina Yang. The extremely driven, ambitious and competitive new intern, a typical workaholic, she's got it all to be an incredible doctor except one thing, her lack of people skills. Oh is wonderful as Yang, aptly fitting into the role and molding into Yang's character without the slightest glitch. A Canadian of Korean heritage, Yang received the 2006 Golden Globe award for best supporting actress for role in Grey's Anatomy. Apart from the popular series, Oh has several successful movies under her belt, like “Sideways”(2004) and “Under the Tuscan Sun” (2003)


Rachel Bilson

6.Rachel Bilson as Summer Roberts in “The O.C”
Bilson is the fun loving Summer, who's so full of life that it's infectious. She's is the all confident party girl and one of the most popular ones in school. But she can't help falling for Sandy Cohen, the geeky teen unsure of how to deal around girls and especially Summer. Although the O.C was Bilson's break through role, she has acted in numerous TV series such as “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, “Ten Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter” and the “70's Shows”. Fans of Summer look out. Her new movie Jumper is out next year!


Jennifer Love Hewitt

7. Jennifer Love Hewitt as Melinda Gordon in “The Ghost Whisperer”
After her success in “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, Jenifer Love Hewitt is back again in another popular series, “The Ghost Whisperer”, playing the role of Melinda Jordon, a 'gifted' woman having the ability to see and talk to the spirits of the dead people. Newly married to a paramedic, Melinda uses her gift to help the ghosts wandering in the new town to overcome their dilemmas and fulfill unfinished tasks of their former lives.



You don't have to be a tech junkie to know that computer softwares are continuously changing the way we live our lives. I bet the majority of the fans of RS simply cant live without nifty things like Instant Messengers, or word processors to help them with their daily chores. For a tech junkie like me, my day starts with turning on my computer to listen to music in my Winamp and ends the day late night watching DVD in PowerDVD. In between I am either tweaking with some images in Photoshop, playing games (which also a kind of software) or doing my assignment in MS Word. So instead of elongating this pointless discussion about why software is important, lets look at some major landmarks in this arena in 2006.

Windows Vista
We have spent the better part of last year waiting for the all-new Windows Operating system, which is billed as the next generation upgrade to Microsoft's windows operating system. It will have two basic version, a 32 bit and a 64 bit version and will come in 5 retail flavours to cover a wide variety of users from students to home users to professionals.

From what I have seen from screenshots and internet reviews, Vista looks awesome. It will also come with built-in widget sidebar for handy access to many online and offline contents in our hard drive. Appearance wise, the most thrilling concept according to me is the fully 3D desktop, in which you can rotate translate and do other stuff with your windows. You can literally “jump” one window to the other and can also run apps in 3D windows. Isn't that cool!

Microsoft promises tighter security for Vista, but we all know how Microsoft is in keeping promises like these. It will be hooked to the Microsoft Live Network so that you can download security patches and other upgrades easily. However, the Beta version of Vista has been patched by hackers to be made available to the poor people who cannot afford to purchase an original piece of software. Although I have seen that several disks are out bearing the name of windows Vista available in our local markets, these are all window blinded versions of WinXP, I suggest to wait a while to get a copy. By the way, whether or not your computer is ready for Vista is a question you should start pondering upon from now on. Vista works best on 64 bit processors (Core 2 Duo or Athlon 64) and requires mighty amount of ram (at least 512 MB) to work smoothly. I say you sill have a little bit of time so go for it.

Microsoft Office Vista
Many of you may not know, but the pirated Beta Version copies of Office Vista are out in the CD shops. Not going too deep into details, Office Vista will come in 64 and 32 bit format. I have tested the 32 bit beta version of it.

It has a totally changes look, compared to office 2003. The regular toolbars are thrown aside for more adaptive tool bar which changes according to how often you use your tools and are grouped together. It has also adopted a new native format, the X format, so that the .doc format is now the .docx and the .xls format is now the .xlsx format. These new format is not compatible with the older office versions, but you can still save in the older versions and port easily if you want. MS Word, the most important software of the suit looks amazing. Now the type face looks exactly what it would look if you print it and has native PDF support so that you can convert or save to PDF on the fly. Office still retains all of its usabilities of the past versions but have made it easier to use and much more practical.

Windows Live Network, Is it worth it?
Now lets go on to the world of internet technology. Sometimes last year, I heard about the introduction of new World Wide Web 2 technology which promises internet to be faster than ever before, however, the technology has yet to be implemented and several tests have been run. For now, you will be lucky if the new fiber optic connection that reached our shores be available sometimes within the next year or so. But that shouldn't keep you from enjoying what's there in the wide world of internet.

The biggest internet happening for me was the unveiling of the Windows Live Network, which is an integration of Hotmail (to be known as Live Mail from now on to) with MSN network, Upcoming windows Vista, MSN Search and other Microsoft .net online platform. Finally Microsoft has some senses put into it as it has started giving upto 2Gigabytes of email box to its Live Mail and existing Hotmail users. Too late Mr. Bill Gates, cos both Yahoo and Gmail has taken this intiative eons ago. MSN Messenger is also renamed Live Messenger and has some new cool features. Live Mail too is highly upgraded version of Hotmail and has Java support and is really fast and cool to use. However, hot on the heels of Live mail, yahoo has also upgraded to the use of java for it's yahoo mail and has added services so that you can check emails even from your cell phones. After a failed attempt to buyout google search, Microsoft has now focused in MSN search to make it better, but google still rules.

Takeover War
When it comes to graphics and design, Adobe is a Goliath. It owns 70% of the global market with its digital creative design suit the CS2 which came out sometimes late 2005. It has already announced CS3 to come out soon sometimes early next year. Till now, the only software company to match Adobe's performance was Macromedia with its drawing and animation tools such as Freehand and Flash. However, in the second quarter of 2006, Adobe declared the takeover of Macromedia by Adobe, making Adobe the only market super power. Just imagine the power of Photoshop merged with the animation capabilities of Flash, wouldn't that be awesome?

Another very important software takeover was the acquisition of award winning 3D animation software Maya by Autodesk, the makers of 3D studio Max. All the movies Pixar movies that we love are made using Maya, and 3D Max is mainly used in the development of games such as Prince of Persia and Splinter Cell. Now with the power of these two software combined, you can expect the most unexpected in the field of Computer Generated Movies and gaming.

Google Rulez
Google is a big believer in people priented software and technology. Which is why almost all its softwares are almost free to use and highly user friendly. Last year google came up with Skechup, which is a free 3D modeling software making the art of 3D much more accessible for the normal users of computer for everyday purposes. It uses an intuitive pencil style to draw 3D shapes. I was even able to create a rough 3D mode of a sports car using it. you can even hook it up with Google earth and share your models with your friends. In addition Google have introduced an online Word Processors and spreadsheet for the purpose of online use making sharing information easier between friends. not to mention youtube.com, a partner site with google which has caught the latest buzz amongst young film makers. youtube is quite simply a site whereby you can upload your videos and share it with the online community. It is an innovative idea which started sometime ago but really picked up in popularity last year. In case you didn't know, one of the founder members is a Bangladeshi guy called Jawed.

Well, if I go on, there wont be any stop so here’s where I draw the line, for now.

Erin Gruwell: Hilary Swank
Scott Casey: Patrick Dempsey
Margaret Campbell: Imelda Staunton
Steve Gruwell: Scott Glenn
Eva: April Lee Hernandez
Andre: Mario

Hilary Swank gives a powerhouse performance as a maverick high school teacher in "Freedom Writers," an often gripping and sometimes even inspiring film drama taken

This is a gripping and powerful story taken from the real-life story of Erin Gruwell, a first-time freshman English teacher at a school California. She turns a rough classroom situation into a local educational triumph through sheer determination and a heck lot of inspiration.

Erin is smart, dedicated, warm-hearted and constantly struggles to bring out the teeming potential of her mostly lower-class students. She tackles head-on all the grievous personal problems to bring out the hidden talents of he her white, black, Asian and Latino kids.

For some reason she abandons a seemingly sure-fire career as a lawyer, shepherded by her successful attorney dad Steve (Scott Glenn), Gruwell takes over a class of hard-case students who at first ignore or ridicule her, while working with cynical colleagues who think that teaching these kids is a waste. But Erin breaks through, giving the students a taste for "The Diary of Anne Frank" and Homer's "Odyssey," even though their own lives are riddled with broken homes, turf wars, drive-by shootings and personal tragedy--and even though many of them have lost at least one friend to gang violence.

"The Freedom Writers Diary" came out as an anthology of journals and personal writings done in Gruwell's class. These memoirs convey the tension and danger--and sometimes overwhelming sadness--of the students' lives, and bits of them are used in voice-overs during the film. This whole effect lends an emotional appeal to the film providing a rich insight into the individual characters.

The film's emotional high comes when Gruwell (as it happened in life) brings to her class--all the way from the Netherlands--one of the main characters in Anne Frank's diary: Anne's friend and protector, Miep Gies, now an elderly woman played by Pat Carroll.

If this were fiction, the average screenwriter probably would have dismissed that scene as unbelievable--but it's precisely why Gruwell's story is worth telling. Swank makes the role her own, and she helps her fellow actors shine, too, including Patrick Dempsey as her initially supportive but eventually alienated husband, Scott, and Imelda Staunton (the great "Vera Drake") as her most persistent foe at school--as well as younger actors like April Lee Hernandez as gang-girl Eva, Mario as street guy Andre, and Deance Wyatt as nasty class-clown Jamal.

It is an amazing mix of reality, sentiment and high drama with a balance that catches the story's raw anxiety and heartfelt connections.


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