Israel and militant group Hamas are still fighting. The conflict started about three weeks ago and over the weekend the UN asked Israel and Hamas to take a break. While Israel agreed, Hamas continued to launch rockets. The Jerusalem Post reported Hamas then decided they would agree to a cease-fire which coincided with the celebration of the end of Ramadan. Israel agreed to only fire when fired upon. US Secretary of State John Kerry was there last week to assist in the brokering of a cease-fire and was unsuccessful. He returned to Washington, DC (The Guardian).
A lightning storm at Venice Beach, CA killed one and injured 12 others last night (Buzzfeed). According to authorities, a 20-year-old man died after the summer storm swept through Southern California (Huffington Post). The LA Times reports the weather conditions that created the storm are expected to linger throughout the early afternoon today.
The Sarah Palin Channel has gone live. Former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican VP nominee announced the launch via Facebook post last night. The site is an interactive online network designed as an alternative to mainstream news media (Politico). According to NBC News, Palin says she oversees all content posted to the channel, which includes her own political commentary. Membership is set at $9.95 per month or $99.95 per year.
Real Estate company Zillow will acquire real estate company and competitor Trulia in a $3.5 billion stock deal, the companies announced today (USA Today). The deal is expected to close next year. The companies expressed hope the merger will prove better opportunities for leveraging ad sales. Business Insider reports the move could clear out America's realtor population within 2 years.
Amazon opens up its 3D Printing Store today, allowing the customization of more than 200 products. These include but are not limited to dog tags, credit card holders, iPhone cases and custom bobble heads (The Verge). Amazon won't actually be printing the items, but they are serving as the connection between the shopper and the 3D-printer. Petra Schindler-Carter, Director for Amazon Marketplace Sales said, "the introduction of our 3D Printed Products store suggests the beginning of a shift in online retail -- that manufacturing can be more nimble to provide an immersive customer experience" (Time).
Actress Kristen Bell (Frozen, Veronica Mars, Couples Retreat) stars as a struggling Mary Poppins in Funny or Die's latest video. In the video, Bell must leave the Banks family to find a better paying job, as her ruler measures she is currently practically perfect in every way, and grossly underpaid. See it here: http://FunnyOrDie.com/m/924y
On this date in 1896 the city of Miami, Florida was incorporated! Kind of turned out to be a big one for me :)