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Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Six Degrees: Dubai's finance minister to Tiger Woods

December 2nd, 2009
07:28 PM ET

Time to get your thinking caps on: it's time for the Connect The World Six Degrees game. Here’s how to play: We choose two people in the news this week and ask you to connect them in six short steps. 

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/12/02/woods.art.jpg ="Tiger Woods has probably had better weeks in his career. "]

This week we're asking you to take a giant leap because our newsmakers come from very different fields. We want you to link Abdulrahman Al Saleh – Director General of the Dubai Department of Finance – and star golfer Tiger Woods.

Up for the challenge?

Leave your submissions in the comments section below, and the team will pick the most creative connection. We'll announce the winner on Friday's show.

Remember: you need five other people between those two: no more, no less. If you want your friends to take the challenge as well, then click the “share post” button below. To see previous challenges, click here. Happy connecting!

Friday's Connector of the Day – Victoria Coren

December 2nd, 2009
06:12 PM ET

Cashing in on the global expansion of poker is millionaire British journalist Victoria Coren.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/12/02/coren.art.jpg caption="Million dollar poker queen Victoria Coren."]

In her new book "For Richer For Poorer" Coren describes her life-long love affair with the game...

Which finally paid off in 2006 when she won a million dollars – tax free – on the London leg of the European Poker Tour, a four-day long gambling marathon.

Victoria is the daughter of celebrated humorist Alan Coren, who died in 2007, and sister of Giles Coren, food critic and tv presenter.

Blessed with the family writing gene, she started penning columns aged 14 for a London newspaper, and had her first book published when she was 16.

But poker always held a fascination for her.
From her teenage years when she yearned to join her older brother’s gang of mates around the kitchen table dealing cards.
Till now when she writes about poker, commentates poker tournaments, and spends every spare minute in her favourite casino or gambling online.

Female players are still in the minority, and the book describes how there is little room at the poker table for husband and children. For now, anyway.

Sophisticated, talented and skilful, or lucky and loaded?
Million-dollar poker player, Victoria Coren is our Connector of the Day – send your questions for her here, and we’ll put the best of them to her on Friday’s show.

Connector of the Day: Stevie Wonder

December 2nd, 2009
06:01 PM ET

Singer-songwriter Stevie Wonder is the newest U.N. Messenger for Peace.

Throughout his blockbusting hit career, Wonder has recorded more than thirty U.S. top ten hits, including songs like ‘Superstition’, ‘Higher Ground’ and ‘You Are The Sunshine Of My Life’.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/12/02/wonder.art.jpg caption="Stevie Wonder: living legend and White House favourite."]

He has won twenty-two Grammy Awards – the most ever won by a male solo artist.

Blind from birth, Wonder’s music has always reflected his concern with humanitarian issues. He has written, produced and performed songs to endorse charities for disabilities, AIDS, cancer, diabetes, hunger and homelessness and domestic abuse.

A much-loved favourite at the White House, Wonder's tune, "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours," was often played at President Obama's campaign stops.

The president has been known to cite Wonder's music as the soundtrack to his youth and marriage. Wonder's love song, "You and I," had been the couple's wedding song.

This week he is joining the prestigious list of United Nations Messengers of Peace to advocate for the Organisation’s work.
“Our newest Messenger of Peace is someone who is admired by millions of people and has given back to millions of people,” U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said, ahead of Wonder’s official designation.

Stevie Wonder will be our Connector of the Day – send your questions and we’ll put the best of them to him on the show.

Wizards versus vampires

December 2nd, 2009
01:14 PM ET

Filming on the final two parts of the massively successful Harry Potter series is close to wrapping up in Hertfordshire, UK.  

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The final movie of the seventh J.K. Rowling book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, is a two-part film, whose first instalment is due to be released in November 2010.

Broadcasters have just gotten their first peak at the upcoming mega-hit.

And so the young global superstars borne from the Harry Potter movie franchise – Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint – are looking towards a Harry Potter-less future after a decade growing up together on screen.

But what of the legions of Harry Potter fans around the world? Deathly Hallows broke sales records as the fastest-selling book ever, selling 15 million copies in its first 24 hours.

Where do they find a home now?

At the same time that Harry Potter winds down its amazing run in all medium – print, film and merchandising knock-offs – another mega-series is taking shape: Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight saga about repressed teenage love between a vampire and his high school sweetheart.

The second instalment in the American romantic fantasy film series, “The Twilight Saga: New Moon ,” broke box-office records this November as the biggest single day domestic gross at $72.7 million.

Like the Harry Potter franchise, Meyers’ books are instant best-sellers; the films instant super-hits. The film’s smouldering young British star, Robert Pattinson, has already graced magazine covers. Legions of screaming young girls follow him wherever he appears.

Is Twilight the new Harry Potter?

Can Harry Potter fans transition from wizards to vampires? Will Twilight continue the path blazed by Harry? Or is it just not the same thing?

Filed under:  General