A monthlong season of BBC films examining the liv

first_imgA month-long season of BBC films examining the lives of young disabled people will feature issues such as parenting, hate crime, relationships, and the qualities required of personal assistants.BBC Three’s Defying The Label season will begin on Monday 20 July with Don’t Take My Baby, a factual drama about a disabled couple’s struggle to keep their daughter.Among the current affairs offerings, Adam Pearson (pictured) is the latest presenter to explore the issue of disability hate crime, aiming to find out why it is “under-reported, under-recorded and under the radar”, in The Ugly Face Of Disability Hate Crime.Artist, campaigner and presenter Sophie Morgan travels to Africa to ask whether Ghana is the “world’s worst place to be disabled”.Among her discoveries, Morgan is taken by a disabled activist to meet a so-called “fetish priest”, who admits that he will dispose of a disabled child for money.The Defying The Label season also features a two-part mini-series which takes a group of young people and interviews them for a job as personal assistant for a disabled person their own age, and follows their experiences over the course of 10 days.Two programmes in the season are set at segregated, specialist colleges.One, Life Begins Now, looks at six students with learning difficulties as they prepare to graduate and “enter the real world”.Another, The Unbreakables: Life And Love On Disability Campus, looks at “the everyday antics” of students with high support needs who are living away from home for the first time, at the National Star College in Gloucestershire.Other programmes in the season examine young people adjusting to life after serious brain injuries; an 11-year-old boy who wants his leg to be amputated because a genetic condition has left his body affected by more than 200 tumours; a disabled teen who has been forced to leave the care system; and the challenges facing four young people with epilepsy.There is also a one-off mock gameshow, The Totally Senseless Gameshow, which “explores disability by disabling its celebrity contestants”, and “plays with taboos and flips between the action on stage to a behind-the-scenes comedy drama back-stage”.last_img read more

A disabled campaigner has won his third legal case

first_imgA disabled campaigner has won his third legal case against separate government departments over their failure to provide information in accessible formats.Graham Kirwan had already secured victories over the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the Department of Health.DWP previously paid him £1,700 damages for refusing to communicate by email over his personal independence payment claim, and in 2015 he was responsible for persuading NHS England to publish its first accessible information standard, thanks to another legal action.Now he has secured a confidential sum of damages from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) over its failure to provide accessible versions of the forms he needs to take legal action for disability discrimination under the Equality Act.Kirwan, who is partially-sighted, has computer software that can magnify text, but it does not usually work with scanned or PDF documents.He had tried in 2015 to access forms from the HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) “form finder” web pages but they were only available in PDF format.He asked HMCTS to make all its forms available in both PDF and Word formats on its website but was told instead to contact his local court every time he required a form.But this “reasonable adjustment” meant it sometimes took six weeks for a form to arrive, while on most occasions he never received it.Kirwan eventually launched a legal case against the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), which continued to insist that asking Kirwan to request forms from his local court was a reasonable adjustment.He pointed out that the court system was seriously under-resourced and that he was often facing delays of up to six weeks to secure forms that non-disabled people could download in minutes.He also pointed out that disability discrimination claims under the Equality Act must be lodged within one day short of six months, so the lengthy delay could be crucial in deciding whether he secured access to justice.Kirwan continued to push for a centralised system that provided disabled people with “a single point of contact and a prompt turnaround for requested forms”.MoJ finally conceded defeat and agreed to set up “a robust system whereby a court user can directly request and receive accessible forms promptly”, and to pay Kirwan damages and court costs.HMCTS has set up a centralised email address for requests for court forms and guidance in alternative formats (hmctsforms@justice.gov.uk) and says all such forms will be sent out within a maximum of 10 days.A Ministry of Justice spokeswoman confirmed the legal settlement.Kirwan says forms he requests in accessible formats are now arriving within 48 hours, thanks to the new system.He said: “I understand that the solution may not be ideal, especially as I originally wanted all forms on the site to be available in multiple formats.“It is now up to larger organisations with much more resources then me to push for bigger change.“I believe that in the circumstances the new system is much more efficient then that proposed by the MoJ and is a step in the right direction.”But he added: “There are still massive hurdles to overcome for disabled users of the civil justice system.“The judiciary is not bound by the Equality Act and it is extremely difficult to get respondents and defendants and specifically the legal profession to correspond in an accessible format.”last_img read more

WITH the start of the new season just days away th

first_imgWITH the start of the new season just days away the media spotlight is now trained on Engage Super League XVI but there is only one place where fans will find the cream of Rugby League writers have come together – the official Millennium Magic programme.Many of the leading lights of the national Rugby League press have contributed unique articles for the event publication, with features covering every Engage Super League club.And to celebrate the Magic Weekend’s move to its new season launch position, the official RFL event programme comes with a free copy of a 68-page pocket guide to preview the new season, which includes a statistical spotlight on all 14 clubs plus essential supporter information too.Under the editorship of Sunday Times writer Chris Irvine, the main Millennium Magic programme includes features with Jamie Peacock, Brett Hodgson, Matt Diskin and Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook to name but a few.There’s also Robbie Hunter-Paul’s season preview and club-by-club predictions, plus interviews with Iestyn Harris and Rob Powell – two of six new head coaches at Super Leagues clubs.With the Magic weekend fixture list reverting to a derby-dominated line-up fans give their views on just what it means to play their local rivals.The official RFL event programme and season pocket guide will be available throughout the Millennium Stadium over the Magic Weekend priced at £5 or by calling 01347 821344.last_img read more

WILLIE Manu was part of the Tonga side that beat t

first_imgWILLIE Manu was part of the Tonga side that beat the Cook Islands 22-16 in last night’s crunch Group C/D clash at Leigh Sports Village.The win kept up his side’s hopes of qualifying for the quarter finals.Now they face Italy on Sunday with the winner possibly progressing to the next round.But they won’t progress no matter what the result if Scotland beat USA on Thursday!Willie’s thoughts.last_img

Club

first_img“The Rhinos will come with confidence after their win over Salford at the weekend. They had a bit of a slow start but that’s to be expected when you have a new coach and new players, they will of course get better over time as their new guys gel together.They have recruited well from the NRL, with Trent Merrin and Conrad Hurrell, to add to some of the dangerous guys they already have in their team like Jack Walker.I am happy how we have started the season and we want to continue that this week against a tough opponent, who generally plays well at our stadium. We will need to be on our game as always against them to get the two points.We don’t want to give them the freedom to play. We want to be on our game defensively and slow down their quick style of play down, as well as execute our own plays in attack.From our side, everyone is fit and we will probably run with the same side as Wakefield. It should be a great game.”After a week-off for the World Club Challenge Justin commented:“The break is probably not ideal after round two but it’s forced upon so we have to just get on with it. We have trained as normal and we have benefitted from the Roosters session which gave some our young players a great experience of being able to train against an NRL team.”On our players who have been featuring for Leigh Centurions, he commented:“Without a reserves competition, the dual-reg partnership with Leigh is our best option to get players who aren’t in the 17, much needed game time.Players should be playing as much as they can. Over in Australia, there are plenty of good players who aren’t in the 17 who have to play games for their feeder clubs. How else can you earn your way back in? The Championship is a good standard and it will certainly keep players sharp when they aren’t able to make it into our starting 17.The game against Leeds Rhinos kicks off at 7:45pm this Friday, 22 February, with tickets still available from the Club Ticket Office at the Totally Wicked Stadium, by calling 01744 455052 or by clicking here.last_img read more

Wilmington man in serious condition following late night shooting

first_imgWILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A Wilmington man is in serious condition after a late night shooting on Walnut Street.Wilmington Police say officers responded to 821 Walnut Street shortly before 10 p.m. and found 33-year-old Kareem Thomas outside the home with a gunshot wound.- Advertisement – Police say there were also several men with Thomas asking for help.Thomas was transported to New Hanover Regional Medical Center where he under-went emergency surgery.No arrests have been made.Related Article: Chadbourn duo accused of beating woman, dog, with baseball bat during home invasionIf you have information, use Text-a-Tip or call (910) 343-3609.last_img read more

12 jurors seated 3 alternates still needed in death penalty case

first_img Bradley also spent nearly 25 years in prison for the 1988 killing of his 8-year-old stepdaughter,The court is still looking for three alternate jurors in the Tucker trial. Jury selection began Jan. 22. James Bradley enters court on June 29, 2017. (Photo: Hannah Patrick/WWAY) WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — After seven long weeks of jury selection, 12 jurors have finally been seated in the James Opelton Bradley death penalty trial.Bradley is charged with the murder of Elisha Tucker, 34. Her body was found five years ago in Pender County while investigators were looking for Shannon Rippy Van Newkirk. Bradley is currently serving 30 years in prison for the murder of Van Newkirk, whose body was never found.- Advertisement – last_img read more

PD washes its hands off President Vellas nomination debate

first_img SharePrint The Democratic Party said that it will not attend Tuesday’s parliamentary debate which will nominate former minister George Vella to become the President of Malta. The reason given by PD is that it said that Government will not amend the Constitution to appoint the new President by a two-thirds majority.Although the Democratic Party welcomed George Vella to the role, it reiterated its belief that Malta is suffering from a dysfunctional democracy, and that the President of the Republic is simply a figurehead.Party Leader Hon Godfrey Farrugia said presidents need more powers to ensure good governance, such as a Council of state, which its main focus will be to advise the President.WhatsApp <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a>last_img read more

Kamra TalPeriti celebrates centenary of Architects Ordinance

first_imgWhatsApp It was on the 25th July 1919 that Herbert Plumer, then Governor of Malta, brought into force the Architects’ Ordinance, which governed the profession of Land Surveyor and Architect and paved the way for the establishment of the profession of Architect and Civil Engineer (Perit) as we know it today.This year, the Kamra tal-Periti is therefore celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Ordinance, and is marking this special occasion with the second edition of its Premju Emanuele Luigi Galizia.The Premju Galizia was first launched in 2018, the culmination of a long-held ambition of the Kamra to award excellence in architecture, civil engineering, urban regeneration and interior design. In this year’s edition, the Kamra is once again also awarding the best emerging practice, as well as launching two new categories, one for multiple dwelling projects having three or more units, and one for the best international project carried out by a locally warranted perit.Following a shortlisting process which took place earlier this month, the finalists will now present their projects to various panels of judges. The 2018 cohort of graduates of the Faculty for the Built Environment will also be presenting their Master of Architecture and Master of Engineering theses and dissertations, after also having gone through a shortlisting process last October. The presentations are open to the public and will be held at the Phoenicia Hotel between Monday 22nd and Wednesday 24th July as per the online programme.The final awards will be presented during a Gala Dinner to be held on the 25th July 2019, which will also be accompanied by an outdoor exhibition of the finalist projects which will be installed near the Christ the King monument in Floriana, and which will remain open until the 2nd August 2019. SharePrintcenter_img <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a>last_img read more

Apple bought Lightning trademark from HarleyDavidson

first_imgAdvertisement Apple officially landed the European trademark over the weekend on the Lightning name for its new mobile connector, but local regulatory filings show that Apple had to buy the rights from motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson.As the patent blog Patently Apple first reported, Harley had been granted the Lightning trademark in Europe in 2005 for a line of motorcycles and parts, though it doesn’t appear that the company ever brought any bikes to market with that name. Harley-Davidson did not respond to a request for comment.Apple was officially granted two European trademark registrations for “Lightning” on Nov. 24. The trademarks were only partially transferred from Harley, meaning that Hogs could carry the Lightning name in the future. – Advertisement – Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.The trademarks Apple received cover a broad list of items, from motorcycle electrical parts and speedometers to audio and video equipment. They also cover vending machines, slot and pinball machines, Christmas tree ornaments, golf tees, cat toys, television sets and eyeglasses.Though the list was likely generated by Harley to cover all of its potential marketing bases, the TV and eyeglasses inclusions piqued some interest in the blogosphere. Could Apple be planning an iTV, or glasses that include the Lightning connector? If so, the company is now covered — in Europe, at least. An Apple spokeswoman was unavailable to comment for this story.Apple unveiled its new eight-prong Lightning connector in September when the company debuted the iPhone 5. It’s much tinier than the 30-pin connector that had been Apple’s standard since 2003, and it now helps power the iPad Mini, fourth-generation iPad and much of the iPod lineup, in addition to the latest iPhone.Though Apple says the smaller connector was necessary to miniaturize its product lineup, customers with legacy hardware have cried foul that Apple is charging $20 and up for an adapter. Cheap knockoffs have made their way to market, despite new restrictions put in place by Apple to prevent copycats.Credit: CNNlast_img read more

Orange to Power Nakuru Towns Free WiFi

first_imgAdvertisement Orange, in partnership with INFONET,a Kenyan based innovations group working towards improving interactions between government, civil society and citizens through ICTs, will power the Wi-Fi access to be provided to residents of Nakuru town, giving them free access to the Internet.This initiative by the Nakuru County Government and the State House Digital team is in line with Orange’s strategy of enhancing the use of its infrastructure to offer value-added data and voice solutions to the counties.Nakuru is set to become the first Kenyan town to provide free Wi-Fi to its residents in the country, and the third in Africa after Kigali, Rwanda and Cape Town, South Africa and the sixteenth globally. – Advertisement – The Wi-Fi range will work within a 10-kilometer radius, in the first phase, covering Nakuru Town’s Central Business District (CBD). The county government expects to extend this to other parts of Nakuru progressively. With seven base stations spread across the CBD, users will be allowed 24-hour unlimited data usage. Movie downloads and visits to adult sites will however be restricted.Orange CEO Mickael Ghossein said that the provision of free wireless Internet to the counties across the country will help in making the counties more accessible for business, as well as assist the county governments to improve their service offering through integrated ICT solutions.Source: CIOlast_img read more

US blocks Intel from updating Chinas supercomputer

first_imgAdvertisement The US government has blocked Intel from helping China update the world’s biggest supercomputer.The company applied for a licence to export tens of thousands of chips to update the Tianhe-2 computer, but the Department of Commerce refused, saying it was concerned about nuclear research being done with the machine.Intel had also signed a separate deal worth $200m (£136m) with the US government to build a massive supercomputer at one of its national laboratories. – Advertisement – The Tianhe-2 super computer uses 80,000 Intel Xeon chips to generate a computational capacity of more than 33 petaflops. A petaflop is equal to about one quadrillion calculations per second. It is at the moment the world’s most powerful machine.The machine was due to undergo a series of upgrades to boost its number-crunching abilities past 110 petaflops, but the upgrades would depend largely on new Intel Xeon chips. The chipmaker informed US authorities of its involvement with the upgrade programme and was told to apply for an export licence.The US Department of Commerce said it refused Intel’s application to export the chips for Tianhe-2 and three other Chinese supercomputers because the machines were being used for “nuclear explosive activities”.Intel has has signed a large deal to build the Aurora supercomputer at the Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois. When finished that machine is expected to have a peak performance of 180 petaflops.Via BBClast_img read more

STAR PREVIEW Queens Cork Coronation

first_img[dropcap]W[/dropcap]inner, winner chicken dinner.Julia Dream duly landed the recommended bet at Windsor last night and whilst at 5/4 we didn’t get too rich it was at least enough for a Nandos chicken dinner rather than a KFC.Mick Channon is putting the miles in today when taking Harlequeen to Cork for the Group 3 Give Thanks Stakes at 8.35.She surely deserves to pick up a prize like this after finishing third in both the Epsom and Irish Oaks.She was beaten at tonight’s Group 3 level at York earlier in the season but that came in the Musidora Stakes won by So Mi Dar and that looked a much stronger race than tonights. Just like M&S mince pies….. there are Group 3’s and then there are Group 3’s.Harlequeen could easily still find further improvement on only her sixth start of her career and holds Aidan O’Brien’s Somehow on both Epsom and Curragh Oaks form.O’Brien’s other runner Best In The World might have to be referred the Advertsing Standards Authority as, so far at least, she isn’t living up to her lofty name.Joseph O’Brien’s Arya Tara bids for a five-timer but this, by far, is her toughest task to date.Dermot Weld has a terrific record in this race – winning three of the last four – and the biggest danger may come from Shamreen who was a good second to Pretty Perfect in the Munster Oaks. However, Pretty Perfect was tailed off in the Irish Oaks so you’d have to be pretty confident that the selection Harlequeen will have her measure.RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-100 points)BACK HARLEQUEEN 25 points at SP with Star SportsPROFIT/LOSS SINCE EUROS: +77 pointsBET NOW WITH STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321last_img read more

STARTERS ORDERS Sunday

first_imgHORSE RACING1.20 NaasAmerican Tom 10/11 > 8/113.40 FontwellMilzipa 7/1 > 7/24.00 ChepstowGreyed A 11/4 > 7/4LIVE FA CUPFA Cup 3rd Round13:30 BT Sport 2 / BT Sport 2 HD / BT Sport 4K UHD1/8 Liverpool 20/1 Plymouth Argyle 8/1 DRAWFA Cup 3rd Round16:00 BBC One / BBC One HD1/4 Tottenham Hotspur 11/1 Aston Villa 9/2 DRAWBET WITH STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321 [dropcap]W[/dropcap]elcome to Starters Orders. Our daily midday update from the trading room at Star Sports with our key market movers for the day across all sports.Sunday 8 Januarylast_img read more

BettingPeople RICK TRIGG

first_imgSimon Nott is author of:Skint Mob! Tales from the Betting RingCLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS Interview: RICK TRIGG Rick Trigg has been a professional poker player for 13 years. He’s earned the nickname ‘The Grinder’ for his work ethic, often working the on-line tables 7 days a week for weeks on end in his early days. In 2014 he was ranked #4 on-line player on the planet. He’s also successful backing horses. Wonder how he does it? Meeting Rick Trigg.RICK TRIGG (part 1 of 3)Professional poker player and punter Rick Trigg talks about his poker career, having won £10,000,000 on-line poker (with his backers copping well from that too). Ranked #4 in the world in 2014, he explains ‘make-up’ and the ups and down of a professional poker player. Why he’s known as ‘The Grinder’, playing 7 weeks for weeks on end, juggling the life with family life. He laments the heyday of on-line poker. He has ideas on how poker sites could generate new players and business but they have to up their game.<span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span>RICK TRIGG (part 2 of 3)Professional poker player and punter Rick Trigg talks about the day he won his biggest pot but sold a large percentage of it to backers, finishing 2nd from 55,000 players. He explains the important role ‘stakeholders’ play in the life of a professional player and why he’s interested in winning money and not the spotlight. He continues with the difference between live poker and its on-line equivalent and how boredom can be your enemy. How has he coped with spending 13 years of his life in one of the most solitary versions of ‘the game’? He also talks about collusion in the on-line game and how to spot ‘robot’ players.<span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span>RICK TRIGG (part 3 of 3)In the final part of our three-part interview with professional poker player Rick Trigg he talks about his horse racing betting and how he gets a few quid from sharp information. He talks how the ‘edge’ in Poker, Horse Racing and Life itself, namely to know more than anyone else. Is a bad losing run on the horses any different to a bad losing run in poker? How he gets his live horse racing bets on but wouldn’t want to spend his winnings owning one. He also talks about losing his ability to play as well as he should and what the future holds for him as a professional punter.<span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span>last_img read more

£25 FREE BET 855 Kempton

first_img£25 FREE BET IFCHLOELLIE WINS 8.55 KEMPTONWe are giving all starsports.bet NEW CUSTOMERS a £25 FREE BET if CHLOELLIE WINS 8.55 KEMPTON.You simply need to open an account and place a bet at evens or above, of at least £10, on any market at starsports.bet between 8am on Wednesday 22 May and 8.55pm on Wednesday 22 May. TERMS AND CONDITIONS(1) This promotion is for new account holders only. To qualify, you must open a new account at starsports.bet anytime from 8am (GMT) on Wednesday 22 May to 8.55pm (GMT) on Wednesday 22 May.(2) In addition, you must place at least one bet online with starsports.bet before 8.55pm (GMT) on Wednesday 22 May. The bet must be for a stake of £10 (or more), on a selection at evens or above, on any market as displayed on the starsports.bet web site, excluding specials or enhanced odds markets.(3) The bonus promotional offer of £25 will be paid as a Free Bet if CHLOELLIE WINS 8.55 KEMPTON. The Free Bet will be valid for a period of 7 days from the point of issue and must be used within this period otherwise will expire.(4) If, for any reason, the event(s) do not take place or are declared void for betting purposes this offer will also be voided.(5) The bonus Free Bet, if successful, will be credited within 48 hours, direct to your online account.(6) Free Bets may not be used in conjunction with any other current promotion.(7) Star Sports reserve the right to withdraw or refuse any Free Bet promotion at any point.(8) Free Bet stakes are not returned with winnings.(9) Free Bet awards cannot be exchanged for cash.(10) Free Bet awards can be used online, tablet or mobile only.(11) The Free Bet must be used within the timeframe specified on the promotion details and may not be either part used or carried forward.(12) This promotion can only be used once per person and per account. Only one bonus can be awarded per person, household, shared computer or shared IP address. In the event of a customer opening more that one account to claim multiple offers we reserve the right to suspend/close duplicate accounts and void any bets placed.(13) Usual Star Sports Betting Rules and Terms and Conditions apply, these can be viewed at starsports.bet.(14) If you have any further questions about this promotion you can contact our customer service team cs@starsportsbet.co.uklast_img read more

Rice Universitys Shell Center for Sustainability calls for submissions to art exhibit

first_imgShareCONTACT: Franz BrotzenPHONE: 713-348-6775E-MAIL: franz.brotzen@rice.edu Rice University’s Shell Center for Sustainability calls for submissions to art exhibitHouston artists offered opportunity to express views on water resourcesRice University is asking Houston-area artists to submit an artistic representation of what water means to them for the sustainability art exhibition “Water: Effects on Life in the Houston Area.” National and local academics and other experts will come together at Rice’s Shell Center for Sustainability to discuss the sustainability of water in the Houston region Oct. 13. They will address growth, environment, health and public policy. The art exhibition is a strong component of the conference, allowing artists to participate with their representation of the various aspects that water has in their community.The exhibition will run through the month of October and will officially open with a reception and an awards presentation Oct. 13 in Farnsworth Pavilion, Ley Student Center, on the Rice University campus, 6100 Main St. A People’s Choice award will be given to first-, second- and third-place winners as voted by the attendees at the opening reception.The exhibition is open to artists who are 19 or older and who live in the Houston metropolitan area. The deadline to enter is Aug. 17. The prospectus and entry form can be found at http://cohesion.rice.edu/centersandinst/shellcenter/outreach.cfm?doc_id=13235. AddThislast_img read more

Hutchinson named dean of undergraduates at Rice Burrus to serve as interim

first_imgShareCONTACT: B.J. AlmondPHONE: 713-348-6770E-MAIL: balmond@rice.eduHutchinson named dean of undergraduates at Rice; Burrus to serve as interim dean of engineeringRice University Professor of Chemistry John Hutchinson has been appointed dean of undergraduates, President David Leebron and George McLendon, who will become provost next week, announced today. The appointment is effective July 1.“I am thrilled that John Hutchinson, with his history of dedication to the Rice undergraduate experience, has agreed to become our next dean of undergraduates,” Leebron said.Hutchinson is a seven-time recipient of Rice’s George R. Brown teaching awards. Prior to the reorganization of administrative and academic leadership of undergraduate education under the dean of undergraduates five years ago, Hutchinson served as assistant vice president for student affairs and interim vice president for student affairs. He also has been a master of Rice’s Brown and Wiess residential colleges. Hutchinson succeeds Rice’s first dean of undergraduates, Robin Forman, who left Rice to become dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Emory University.“John’s numerous teaching awards are testimony to his rapport with students and his grasp of the academic aspect of the student experience at Rice,” McLendon said.Leebron and McLendon also announced that former engineering dean Sidney Burrus will serve as interim dean of the George R. Brown School of Engineering, effective Sept. 1.“The School of Engineering thrived under Sid’s leadership, and we’re very happy to welcome him out of retirement and back into the role of interim dean while the search for a new dean is under way,” McLendon said.Burrus, a Rice alum and the Maxfield and Oshman Professor Emeritus of Electrical and Computer Engineering, served as Rice’s dean of engineering from 1998 to 2005. He has also served as chair of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and as director of the Computer and Information Technology Institute. A former master of Lovett College, Burrus is also the recipient of multiple teaching awards at Rice and the Association of Rice Alumni’s highest honor, the Gold Medal. Current Dean Sallie Keller will be leaving Rice at the end of the summer to become director of the Science and Technology Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. AddThislast_img read more

Rice University students to destress with therapy pets during finals week April

first_imgShareMEDIA ADVISORYDavid Ruth713-348-6327david@rice.eduJeff Falk713-348-6775jfalk@rice.eduRice University students to de-stress with therapy pets during finals week, April 24-May 1HOUSTON – (April  18, 2013) – Rice University students will have the opportunity to mingle, de-stress and share hugs with dogs of various breeds during finals week, April 24-May 1, at the university’s Fondren Library, 6100 Main St.The library has asked Houston pet therapy organization Faithful Paws to bring its friendly canines to the first-floor reference collection area of Fondren from 5 to 9 p.m. April 25, from 3 to 9 p.m. April 26 and from 2 to 8 p.m. April 27. Two therapy cats will also be present during the April 25 session.Fondren Library held its first therapy dog sessions during finals last December and received overwhelmingly positive feedback from students, according to library staff members.For more information about Faithful Paws, a program founded in 1997 and sponsored by Bellaire United Methodist Church, visit www.faithfulpawshouston.com.Media interested in covering one of the pet therapy sessions should RSVP to Jeff Falk, associate director of national media relations at Rice, at jfalk@rice.edu or 713-348-6775.-30-Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,708 undergraduates and 2,374 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice has been ranked No. 1 for best quality of life multiple times by the Princeton Review and No. 2 for “best value” among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to http://tinyurl.com/AboutRiceU.  AddThislast_img read more

Whether anger impacts negotiation outcomes depends on ethnicity of negotiator

first_imgShareDavid Ruth713-348-6327david@rice.eduAmy Hodges713-348-6777amy.hodges@rice.eduWhether anger impacts negotiation outcomes depends on ethnicity of negotiatorHOUSTON – (May 6, 2013) – It’s said you should never go to bed angry, but what about to the negotiation table? Researchers at Rice University and New York University suggest that ethnic backgrounds can influence the effectiveness of expressing anger in negotiations. In a series of studies, the researchers found that angry individuals of East Asian descent are perceived as tougher negotiators than their angry European-American counterparts, and consequently elicit greater cooperation at the negotiation table.“There’s no denying it — emotions play a very important role in negotiations,” said Hajo Adam, visiting assistant professor of management at Rice’s Jones Graduate School of Business. “However, no prior research has investigated how the cultural background of the emotion expresser impacts the negotiation results.”Results from four studies revealed that angry negotiators are perceived as tougher and more threatening when they are of East Asian rather than European-American descent, despite the fact that both parties are perceived as equally angry. As a result, parties in a negotiation are more likely to make concessions to angry East Asian counterparts than to angry European-American counterparts.Other findings:In study No. 1, participants indicated that they would cooperate more with angry East Asian counterparts than with angry European-American or Hispanic counterparts, ruling out the possibility that the predominantly European-American participants cooperate more with angry counterparts regardless of foreign culture.In study No. 2, nonangry East Asian negotiators elicited similar cooperation as nonangry European-Americans in negotiations, ruling out the possibility that individuals were cooperating more with East Asian counterparts than European-American counterparts in general.In study No. 3, both East Asian and European-Americans perceived East Asian counterparts as being tougher and more threatening negotiators than European-Americans and made larger concessions as a result.In study No. 4, participants again made larger concessions to an angry East Asian than to an angry European-American counterpart; however, this effect only emerged for participants who held the stereotype of East Asians being emotionally inexpressive and European-Americans being emotionally expressive. It did not appear when participants did not hold this stereotype, which suggests that the effect emerges because of cultural stereotypes about the emotional expressivity of different cultural groups.Adam said he hopes the research will add to the body of literature on the interplay of culture and emotions in social interactions, especially as places of employment grow more diverse and rely more on interpersonal communication.“The workplace is an increasingly diverse place, and it has changed dramatically in recent years,” Adam said. “More and more, employees must interact with their fellow workers and other company stakeholders from different cultures, and emotions play a huge role in negotiating this interpersonal dynamic.”Details on the study procedures:Study No. 1 recruited 98 participants (64 men, 34 women, average age of 32.01) from Amazon’s Mechanical Turk website to participate in an online negotiation. All participants were from the U.S. and the vast majority of them (79.6 percent) were of European ethnicity. Participants were told they would be randomly matched with another user to conduct an online negotiation; in reality they negotiated with a simulated counterpart. Participants played the role of a project manager negotiating an IT contract and were provided with information about their counterpart, identifying them as European-American, Hispanic or East Asian. After participants made a first offer, they received feedback that read, “Wow, this offer makes me really angry. … I expect a better offer; I’m pretty pissed off.” After receiving the message, participants were told the negotiation was over and were asked questions about their behavior intentions.Study No. 2 included 120 participants (55 men, 65 women, average age of 33.24) from Mechanical Turk. All participants were from the U.S. and the vast majority of them (80.8 percent) were of European ethnicity. Participants were presented with a longer version of the same basic scenario as in study No. 1; however, instead of leading participants to believe that they were to negotiate with another participant, they were simply told to read a scenario and imagine how they would react to the situation. Participants were told that their counterpart in the negotiation responded to their initial offer in either an angry or an emotionally neutral fashion. The counterpart was described as either European-American or East Asian. At the end of the experiment, participants were asked what their final offer would be.Study No. 3 included 288 participants (122 men, 166 women, U.S. college students with an average age of 20.58). Approximately half the participants were of European descent; the other half were of East Asian descent. Students were randomly assigned as “Student 1” or “Student 2” and were paired with a student of the same sex to negotiate how to work on a student project. “Student 1” was randomly assigned to one of two anger conditions: In one condition, they were instructed to express anger; in the other condition, they were instructed to remain emotionally neutral.Study No. 4 included 110 participants (52 men, 58 women, average age of 32.27 years). All participants were from the U.S., and the majority of them (83.6 percent) were European-American. Participants took part in the study on Amazon’s Mechanical Turk website and were told that they would complete two separate studies. In the first part of the study, participants were told they participated in a pilot test for another experiment. This part of the study actually assessed whether participants hold the stereotype of East Asians being emotionally inexpressive and European-Americans being emotionally expressive. In the second part of the study, participants engaged in a computer-mediated negotiation with a simulated counterpart who expressed anger throughout the negotiation and was described as either European-American or East Asian.The paper, “Not All Anger is Created Equal: The Impact of the Expresser’s Culture on the Social Effects of Anger in Negotiations,” was co-authored by Aiwa Shirako, visiting professor of management and organizations at New York University, and is available online at http://bit.ly/101HGTI. Faculty research grants awarded to the authors by New York University and Northwestern University funded the research.-30-For more information, contact David Ruth, director of national media relations at Rice, at 713-348-6327 or david@rice.edu.This news release can be found online at http://news.rice.edu/.Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.Related Materials:Hajo Adam headshot (Photo credit: Rice University):Hajo Adam bio: http://business.rice.edu/OnlineDirectory/PersonnelDetail.aspx?id=4294970598Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,708 undergraduates and 2,374 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice has been ranked No. 1 for best quality of life multiple times by the Princeton Review and No. 2 for “best value” among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to http://tinyurl.com/AboutRiceU. If you do not wish to receive news releases from Rice University, reply to this email and write “unsubscribe” in the subject line. Office of News and Media Relations – MS 300, Rice University, 6100 Main St., Houston, TX 77005 FacebookTwitterPrintEmailAddThislast_img read more

Rice University appoints Alison Weaver to direct Moody Center for the Arts

first_imgShare5NEWS RELEASEB.J. Almond713-348-6770balmond@rice.eduRice University appoints Alison Weaver to direct Moody Center for the Arts HOUSTON — (July 13, 2015) — Alison Weaver, an art historian and former director of affiliates for the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, has been named executive director of Rice University’s Moody Center for the Arts.Weaver will oversee the $30 million, 50,000-square-foot facility, currently under construction, that will be an interdisciplinary center with space for arts education, performances, gallery exhibitions, material fabrication and digital media art production, as well as a site for collaborations with local and international arts institutions.“Alison brings a wonderful combination of deep passion for the arts and practical experience as a senior administrator in one of the world’s best museums,” Rice President David Leebron said. “Her wide-ranging background and perspective make her the ideal person to serve as the first director of the exciting new Moody Center for the Arts at Rice.”The Moody Center will benefit from Weaver’s museum management experience, knowledge of art history, solid business background and ties to the Houston community. In her six years at the Guggenheim, Weaver led its programs and operations in Berlin, Venice, Las Vegas and Bilbao, Spain, while managing its departments of Exhibition Management, Registration, Art Services and Library/Archives in New York. Together with her curatorial colleagues, she implemented a wide range of international traveling exhibitions, from historical loan shows such as “Art in America: 300 Years of Innovation” to new commissions such as William Kentridge’s “Black Box/Chambre Noire.” She also coordinated the museum’s strategic-planning process and managed the Guggenheim’s reaccreditation by the American Association of Museums.Weaver has a Master of Arts degree from Williams College and will complete a Ph.D. in art history this fall at City University of New York, where her research focuses on the dialogue between Europe and the United States from 1945 to the present. She has written about a variety of international artists, including Nam June Paik and Sigmar Polke, and has taught Introduction to the Visual Arts of the World at City College of New York. Her current research focuses on the U.S. reception of the German artist Joseph Beuys. She also has an MBA from the Yale School of Management and a B.A. cum laude in the history of religion from Princeton University. Before joining the Guggenheim staff, she was an engagement manager for the consulting firm McKinsey & Co.“Alison’s combination of a strong business background, an incredibly strong academic background and very significant museum experience is remarkable,” said Sarah Whiting, dean of Rice’s School of Architecture, who chaired the search committee for the Moody Center director. “She can engage artists, faculty, students and the general public with the same ease because she has such a breadth of experience and interests. She’s going to bring a new way of thinking to Rice, and we’re very excited to have her.”Weaver said that working internationally with the Guggenheim’s affiliates, each of which faced local as well as global challenges, helped her appreciate the importance of working together to realize common goals. That experience, she said, will be relevant to Rice.“A crucial part of my role will be to listen and respond to the various creative ideas of the departments across campus,” she said. “My goal is to involve everyone  – whether you’re an artist or an engineer or a member of the visiting public. There will be exciting programs and classes held at the Moody Center designed to attract and engage diverse audiences.”Weaver also expressed her excitement about partnering with the Menil Collection, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Contemporary Arts Museum and other local arts organizations on exhibits at the Moody Center. “It will be a homecoming of sorts,” she said. Weaver grew up in Houston and developed her own passion for the arts by visiting local museums, theaters and community art spaces.“My interest in art began while growing up in Houston wandering through the Menil and marveling at its extraordinary collection, and was further developed as an undergraduate at Princeton,” Weaver said. “While taking a class on early Chinese art, I had the opportunity to physically handle a Shang bronze ritual vessel in the collection of the university museum. It was a transformative experience that led to a lifelong interest in the power of art, and ultimately to a career as an art historian and arts administrator.“I believe that every student at Rice and every visitor to the Moody Center should be given the opportunity to have a transformative experience with a work of art, and I look forward to partnering with my Rice colleagues to bring stimulating objects, compelling classes and memorable programs to the Moody.”Weaver will start her new position Sept. 1.The Moody Center was made possible by a $20 million gift from the Moody Foundation with additional support from the Brown Foundation and other donors. Los Angeles-based Michael Maltzan Architecture is building the center, which will be located on the south side of campus.The two-story building will provide lecture and studio classrooms for physical and digital arts making, a theater for experimental and smaller-scale productions, and galleries for exhibitions of student and faculty works and works curated by Rice or in collaboration with local museums, private collections and international artists. The studio art spaces will include wood, metal and paint shops where students can collaborate to create art as part of experiential learning.The design calls for glass walls on the lower level that will allow passersby to view artwork being created and displayed. Dark brick with pink mortar will encase the upper level, which will extend out over the lower level so that people can walk underneath and get a closer view of the galleries inside. The dark brick and large “lantern-like” structures on the east and west ends of the north facade will help distinguish this building from others on campus.The Moody Center is scheduled to open in fall 2016 and will complement Rice’s strengths in the arts, architecture, music, engineering, digital computation, theater and fine arts. # # # High-resolution IMAGES are available for download at:http://news.rice.edu/files/2015/07/0713_MOODY_Alison_Weaver.jpgCAPTION: Alison WeaverPHOTO CREDIT: David M. Russellhttp://news.rice.edu/files/2015/07/0713_MOODY.jpgCAPTION: This is a rendering of Rice University’s Moody Center for the Arts, which is currently under construction. Alison Weaver has been appointed executive director of the center.This release can be found online at news-network.rice.edu/news.Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews. AddThislast_img read more

Employee Surveillance Startup Contests and More – Boston News

first_imgData4You, an all-ages coding boot camp.Jobiri, which “assists people with finding jobs through an AI-driven career adviser.”micro:bit, which “provides tiny programmable computers for students and teachers.”Income Growth and Job CreationABURY’s “Design meets Craft” connects “designers and artisans through a digital platform to find creative project partners, and connect with the global market.”mecasa is an “online platform connecting caretakers with senior individuals who need daily support.”ProGlove is a “smart glove designed to scan and streamline manufacturing and logistics work.”Financial Inclusionhiveonline is a “mobile platform offering small- and micro-businesses administrative help and access to financial services.”Trezeo, which “provides a mobile financial platform for independent workers.”Sherpa, which “offers insurance to people who are self-employed, freelancers, contractors, and other entrepreneurs.”Technology AccessBLITAB, a “tactile tablet designed for blind and visually-impaired users.”Pangea Electronics “builds sustainable and eco-friendly technology.”Teqmine Analytics uses “AI to help customers with their research and development questions.”You can read more about the event here.Think You’re Having a Heart Attack? If You’re a Woman, Insist on a Female Physician – Harvard Business School NewsNew PNAS research co-authored by HBS Associate Professor Laura Huang, along with the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities’ Brad Greenwood and Washington University in St. Louis’ Seth Carnahan finds that of “more than 500,000 heart attack patients admitted to hospital emergency departments in Florida between 1991 and 2010, female patients treated by male physicians were less likely to survive than patients of either gender treated by female physicians or male patients treated by male physicians.”Moreover, “survival rates among female patients treated by male physicians improved with an increase in the percentage of female physicians in the emergency department and an increase in the number of female patients previously treated by the physician.”In “Patient-Physician Gender Concordance and Increased Mortality Among Female Heart Attack Patients,” the researchers write:“These results suggest a reason why gender inequality in heart attack mortality persists: Most physicians are male, and male physicians appear to have trouble treating female patients. If female patients tend to be more challenging for male and female doctors to diagnose and treat, the patterns we document may reflect the fact that the most skillful physicians (i.e., female physicians) provide the highest return to their skills when treating the most challenging patients (i.e., female patients).”You can read more about the research here. regions: Boston Last Updated Aug 13, 2018 by Jonathan PfefferFacebookTwitterLinkedinemail About the AuthorJonathan PfefferJonathan Pfeffer joined the Clear Admit and MetroMBA teams in 2015 after spending several years as an arts/culture writer, editor, and radio producer. In addition to his role as contributing writer at MetroMBA and contributing editor at Clear Admit, he is co-founder and lead producer of the Clear Admit MBA Admissions Podcast. He holds a BA in Film/Video, Ethnomusicology, and Media Studies from Oberlin College.View more posts by Jonathan Pfeffer Employee Surveillance, Startup Contests, and More – Boston News Let’s explore some of the most interesting stories that have emerged from Boston business schools this week.The Surprising Effects of Employee Surveillance – Questrom School of Business BlogBU Questrom School of Business professor Michel Anteby recently co-authored new research that explores the ways in which increased surveillance of employees can lead “to workers’ strikes and sometimes even quitting their jobs altogether.”The article points to a 2011 experiment where TSA managers installed cameras to monitor officers “as an attempt to stop the disappearance of baggage in airports.” According to TSA officers, they felt they “as though their managers were merely looking for a reason to discipline them.”New BU research finds that workplace scrutiny often leads to a worse work environment, even if it is inadvertently / Photo via bu.eduAccording to Anteby’s research, “under such scrutiny, one tends to lose sight of the bigger picture, which ends up with employees feeling undervalued and over scrutinized.” You can read the full article here.These 12 European Startups Are Using Technology to Improve Opportunities For Low-And Middle-Income Workers – MIT Sloan NewsroomThe MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy’s Global Inclusive Innovation Challenge announced its 12 European finalists, all of which are working to improve economic opportunity for workers. According to the article, “the competitors are judged on vision, impact, participation, and scalability.”Initiative Director Erik Brynjolfsson writes, “If we employ inclusive innovation globally, it could be the best thing that ever happened to humanity. We can have more wealth, better health, and widely held prosperity.”According to the article, the European finalists will travel to “Darmstadt, Germany, in early September, where they will pitch their ideas at a regional competition. The winner of each category then goes on to compete in November during the Global Grand Prize Gala at MIT. The gala includes four $250,000 prizes, one for each category.”The 12 European finalists, organized by category, are as follows:Skills Development and Opportunity Matching RelatedManaging a Personal Crisis, and More – Boston NewsWhat’s going on in Boston this week? How to Manage an Employee Who’s Having a Personal Crisis – Harvard Business Review The Harvard Business Review recently explored how managers can best support employees to “take care of themselves emotionally while also making sure they are doing their work.” Annie McKee,…July 16, 2018In “Boston”Meet Boston Questrom’s First Female Dean, Susan FournierWhat does it take to be the first female dean at your business school? It takes a lot of experience, know-how, and pioneering research. That’s precisely why Boston University’s Questrom School of Business choose Susan Fournier to be the first female to lead the school. After 13 years as a…October 17, 2018In “Boston”MIT Faculty Director Explains Wave of “Alt” Jobs – Boston NewsLet’s explore some of the most interesting stories that have emerged from Boston business schools this week. How Transportation Disruption and Electric Vehicles Can Slash Greenhouse Gases – Questrom School of Business Blog BU Questrom Professor of the Practice and Director of the university Institute for Sustainable Energy (ISE)’s Peter…November 7, 2018In “Boston”last_img read more

65 Arrested at ProTrump Rally in Nigeria

first_img(Google Maps)  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Police in Nigeria say they’ve arrested 65 people at a pro-Donald Trump rally on Friday in the southern city of Port Harcourt, according to media reports.The rally was organized by pro-independence activists in the country’s southern part, AFP reported on Jan. 22.“Some suspected members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) … staged an unlawful protest in the Port Harcourt metropolis,” Rivers State’s deputy police chief Ahmed Magaji told the news agency. The march, he added, was not authorized, claiming it disturbed public order.IFOB also claimed that Nigerian forces killed 11 people—which the Nigerian government denied, AP reported. Ugochukwu Chinweuba, a member of the group, said police and soldiers used live rounds and that “scores” were wounded in addition to the dead.Nnamdi Omoni, a spokesman for Rivers state police, said the claim was false and that police only used tear gas.“To the best of my knowledge, there was no casualty as the police merely employed minimal action, which involved the use of tear gas to disperse protesters,” he said. “About 65 of them were arrested” on suspicion of belonging to the separatist IPOB, which is an activist group calling for the creation of an independent republic in Nigeria. They had the movement’s flag, an official said.At least 1 million people were killed in the 1967-70 civil war that was started by Biafran secessionists.The Associated Press contributed to this report. 65 Arrested at Pro-Trump Rally in Nigeria Group claims 11 people killed by security forcesBy Epoch Newsroom January 23, 2017 Updated: January 23, 2017 Share this articlecenter_img US Share Show Discussionlast_img read more

Playground Slide Explodes Burning 9YearOld Boys Leg

first_img US Show Discussion Ambulance waits outside a hospital.(Stefan Wermuth/Reuters) Playground Slide Explodes, Burning 9-Year-Old Boy’s Leg By Jack Phillips June 28, 2017 Updated: June 28, 2017 Sharecenter_img A plastic playground slide in Wisconsin bubbled and “exploded,” injuring a 9-year-old boy, local reports said.Giuseppe Storniolo, 9, was at the Reservoir Park in West Allis when the incident took place. People said they heard a loud bang.“I just heard like a big explosion so I thought maybe something fell,” Storniolo’s mother, Diana, told WTMJ.She ran over and saw a warped slide and her injured son.(Screenshot/WTMJ Facebook Page) (Screenshot/WTMJ Facebook Page)It’s unclear why the slide exploded. A hole was created at the bottom, triggering it to bubble up before popping, Fox News reported.“It was like the slide had almost been inflated,” West Allis Mayor Dan Devine told local outlets. “It just opened up, bubbled.”“I’ve never heard of this happening,” added Michael Lewis, the West Allis director of public works, Greenfield West Allis Now reported. “I sent an email to my professional organization this morning to see if anybody else had an experience like this.”The firm that installed the slide last year will inspect it this week.There were theories that heat was to blame for the slide explosion.“The slide went through more heat the week before,” Lewis was quoted by the website as saying. The weather at that time was in the 90s.“They have the same exact model in Arizona,” Devine noted, adding that temperatures in Arizona get much hotter.Police have ruled out vandalism or terrorism.“Police tested it for explosives and didn’t find anything,” Lewis noted.The young child suffered second-degree burns on his leg, Fox News reported. Share this article  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   last_img read more

An Addicted County and a Sheriffs Cry for Help

first_img DAYTON, Ohio—The sheriff of Montgomery County is fighting an uphill battle. He has been fighting it for four years, but it has only gotten worse. His county has the unfortunate burden of being the worst in the nation for opioid overdose deaths, per capita.His deputies are spending more than half their time responding to overdose calls. One dose of the opioid-blocker Narcan often isn’t enough to revive a patient anymore, and when it does work, he said, 35 percent of the time the addict stands up, walks away, and does it again the next day.“That’s the frustrating part,” Sheriff Phil Plummer, 52, said in his Dayton office on Aug. 3.“In our county, we are averaging 10 overdoses a day. Last night, we had 17,” he said. “It fluctuates when we see different product coming in, or a different gang mixing the product. When they put too much fentanyl in it, we have a large amount of overdoses that day.“Envision this: You’ve got gangs selling this stuff on the streets; the cartel brings it here, and they filter it out to our gangs, on our streets and in our neighborhoods. So they are sitting at the kitchen table stuffing these gelcaps with whatever they want to put in them,” said Plummer.Montgomery County Sheriff Phil Plummer at his office in Dayton, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times) Montgomery County Sheriff Phil Plummer at his office in Dayton, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times) Seven years ago, there were 127 unintentional drug overdose deaths in Montgomery County. This year, the numbers are on track to hit 800, more than double the number last year.The synthetic opioids fentanyl and carfentanil are to blame for the spike. Starting in late 2013, several states reported surges in fentanyl overdoses. Between 2013 and 2014, there was a 79 percent increase in deaths related to synthetic opioids, according to the 2016 Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) heroin report.Now it’s hard to find heroin on the streets in the county—fentanyl is the new high. It was originally developed as a painkiller and an anesthetic, and is 50 to 100 times more potent than heroin. Two milligrams of fentanyl is a lethal dose for a non-opioid user.Carfentanil is less common but way more deadly; it is used as an elephant tranquilizer and is 10,000 times more powerful than morphine, according to the DEA. Even a few specks of airborne powder can be fatal.“Now they don’t want heroin anymore, now they want fentanyl, and so they’re climbing the ladder as to how potent the product is,” Plummer said. “A drug dealer gives somebody a dose of fentanyl or carfentanil, and they overdose and die, then all the addicts seek out that drug dealer because they want the next strongest product. It is a very bizarre addiction.”Montgomery County Deputy Sheriff Andy Teague, speaks with two people who had allegedly been using drugs inside an abandoned home in the Drexel neighborhood of Dayton, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times) Deputy Sheriff Andy Teague, speaks with two people who have allegedly been using drugs inside an abandoned home in Montgomery County, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)Illicitly produced fentanyl is sold alone or in combination with heroin and other substances. It has also been identified in counterfeit pills, mimicking pharmaceutical drugs such as oxycodone, according to the DEA. In 2015, the agency issued a nationwide alert on fentanyl, designating it a threat to health and public safety.Related CoverageA Glimpse Into the Human Toll of Opioid AddictionBut it is still prescription painkillers, such as OxyContin and Vicodin, that are getting most people hooked in the first place. An estimated 2 million Americans are addicted to prescription painkillers, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Eighty percent of heroin users initiated their substance abuse with prescription drugs—most often by obtaining pills through a friend or family member.Approximately 52 people in the United States die every day from overdosing on prescription painkillers, according to the CDC.Plummer said he saw the arc from prescription pills to illicit synthetic opioids happen over several years.A gelcap with powder residue, possibly fentanyl, found in a vehicle in Montgomery County, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times) A gelcap with powder residue, possibly fentanyl, found in a vehicle in Montgomery County, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times)“We didn’t know we had a pill problem. We then shut down some pill mills—where people could go see a doctor with no patient care and just walk out with a prescription they wanted for only $50 cash,” he said.“We didn’t know, with shutting those down, that we had that many addicts, and so of course they morph to heroin.”He called it a “perfect storm.”“The Mexican cartels then realize we are shutting the mills down, so they flood us with heroin. The heroin is really cheap; it’s only $6 for a gelcap,” Plummer said.“There is still a mixture of prescription drugs on the streets but they are very expensive and they can get heroin so much cheaper. So they all move to heroin … and then they’re chasing pure fentanyl, then carfentanil.”The largest population struck by the opioid crisis is white males between the ages of 31 and 39, “which should be your strong working class, not your strong addicted class,” said Plummer.DistributionFentanyl is being produced clandestinely in Mexico and also comes directly from China, according to the DEA. And Mexican heroin accounted for 79 percent of the total weight of heroin analyzed by the DEA in 2014.Plummer said Dayton has become a hub for opioid distribution.“It’s very, very different from the past. In the past, it would go to Columbus, or from Chicago to Dayton. And now it’s coming directly from Mexico to Dayton, Ohio,” he said. “We have highway 75 coming through our community and Interstate 70, two major interstates, so now they can come to Dayton, get on 70, then go east to New York or west to Chicago.”Plummer said dealers from neighboring Indiana travel to Dayton to buy the $6 gelcaps and then sell them for $20 a pop in Indiana.A man is searched by Montgomery County Deputy Sheriff Andy Teague for any drugs or paraphernalia in the Drexel neighborhood of Dayton, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times) A man is searched by Deputy Sheriff Andy Teague for any drugs or paraphernalia in Montgomery County, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)In the past, the cartel would handle the dealing, car to car, but now they turn the work over to the local gangs, Plummer said. He said there are a lot of homegrown gangs in the area, such as the Dayton View Hustlers, as well as national gangs like the Crips and the Bloods.The Mexican cartels “bring up the large shipments, and the gangs distribute it on the streets, and the cartel collects the revenue and then takes it back to Mexico,” he said.Plummer said an estimated $65 million in drug money is going back to Mexico from his county annually.“And I can’t even afford a new police car because we are so strapped for finances,” he said, adding that besides the cartels, the only ones who benefit are the funeral homes.“You see, what these dealers are doing now is, they go to gas stations, and they will throw two to three gelcaps in your car, and these are called testers,” Plummer said. “Then they will toss their business card in there too, ‘Try these. If you like them, call me.’ So if you try one, you’re addicted, and they’ve got you.”That’s the street distribution.Law enforcement officials at the home of a man who was found dead from an apparent drug overdose in the Drexel neighborhood of Montgomery County, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times) Law enforcement officials at the home of a man who was found dead from an apparent drug overdose in Drexel, Montgomery County, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)The other major distribution method is much more hidden and harder to intercept. It happens online over the darknet—which masks the user’s location and identity—and through the postal service. Addicts can purchase fentanyl and heroin on a website that can only be accessed using special software. The drugs then get shipped via FedEx or UPS directly to their doorstep.“We have only one postal inspector in this region, and he is in Kentucky, so there is a huge gap,” Plummer said. “We need more assets in all these hubs. We need dogs sniffing boxes.”An online darknet marketplace called AlphaBay was seized and taken down by the Department of Justice in July. The site hosted some 220,000 drug sale listings and was responsible for countless synthetic opioid overdoses, the DOJ said in a statement.Attorney General Jeff Sessions shared the story of Grant Seaver, who was a 13-year-old student in Utah. Seaver died after overdosing on a synthetic opioid that had been purchased by a classmate on AlphaBay.“The ability of these drugs to so instantaneously end these promising lives is a reminder to us all of just how incredibly dangerous these synthetic opioids are—especially when they are purchased anonymously from the darkest places on the internet,” Sessions said in a speech on July 20.* *SolutionsInstead of shoring up his resources to fight the tide of addiction overwhelming his county, Plummer has been forced to lay off officers due to budget constraints in recent years.“If I had 20 people to throw at this, I could have 24-hour, continual pressure on this problem, and we could change it,” Plummer said.He sees the solution as three-pronged: cutting off supply, treating addicts, and preventing the next generation from entering the cycle.“Unfortunately, America has become a pill society. If you have a headache, you take a pill. If you have a backache, you take a pill. We have to change the culture, and it is going to take a while. We didn’t get like this overnight, so it’s going to take a long time to educate folks,” Plummer said.He wants to see tougher measures against drug traffickers and believes the current administration is moving in the right direction.“The frustrating part is, we’re using Narcan to revive people and then they [cartels] send over stronger synthetic products that are now starting to defeat our Narcan. We are used to using two doses of Narcan to revive somebody, and now we are up to six. Our record is 46 doses of Narcan on one person to revive them. And that’s $50 a shot.”Narcan contains 4 milligrams of naloxone hydrochloride, which blocks the effects of opiates in the body. It is a nasal spray administered up the patient's nostril and the effects are often very quick. Subsequent doses can be administered every two to three minutes, depending on patient response. (PureRadiancePhoto/Shutterstock) Narcan contains 4 milligrams of naloxone hydrochloride, which blocks the effects of opioids in the body. It is a nasal spray administered up the patient’s nostril and the effects are often very quick. Subsequent doses can be administered every two to three minutes, depending on patient response. (PureRadiancePhoto/Shutterstock)The department conducts blitzes in cooperation with local police departments. Officers in unmarked cars watch locations like gas stations, which are common places for drug dealing.“We will watch the drug deal go down, then marked cars will come in and try to stop the dealer and the addicts,” he said. The locations are chosen based on overdose data and complaint calls.If someone dies from an overdose, the department’s HEAT (heroin eradication apprehension) team investigates the scene for evidence of who the dealer is.“If you die from that dealer’s product, we try to charge the dealer with involuntary manslaughter. We’ve had two or three cases that were successful already,” Plummer said.On the addict side, Plummer’s department has set up several initiatives to try to get people into treatment. Deputies, faith-based volunteers, and other volunteers will go to the home of an addict who has overdosed and required Narcan to be revived.“We go out in your neighborhood, knock on your door, and we educate your family on the dangers of the stuff and what kind of resources are out there for treatment,” he said.“Every Wednesday, they’re out knocking on the doors, like those 17 overdoses that we had? Wednesday, they will be out knocking on their doors, and they will drag you to treatment. It’s been pretty successful.”Local police and paramedics help a man who is overdosing in the Drexel neighborhood of Dayton, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times) Paramedics assist a man who has just been administered a dose of Narcan for an apparent opioid overdose in Montgomery County, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)In 2013, Plummer said the department was getting calls from parents, saying, “My child’s addicted, and we have no place to take them, and they’re going to die.”So the Front Door program was launched, in which a deputy would go to pick up the addict.“We had agreements with treatment centers, so we would drive them right to the treatment center, no questions asked, start the treatment, and we would figure out how to pay for it later,” he said.“We need to treat these folks and keep them alive. We have to give them another day to fight for their lives,” he said.But there is always a new challenge.“The majority of our people dying now are individual addicts who are sneaking off and doing it by themselves, so there is nobody there to support them. We are finding them in their bathroom; they sneak in there and shoot up, out they go, and there is nobody there to find them,” Plummer said.“The addiction is so great, it’s hard to turn the addict around.”Federal SupportAt the federal level, President Donald Trump instructed his administration to use all “appropriate emergency and other authorities” to respond to the opioid epidemic, in an official statement on Aug. 10.The president was briefed two days prior by his Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis.“We’ve got a tremendous team of experts and people that want to beat this horrible situation that’s happened to our country,” Trump said on Aug. 8 in Bedminster, New Jersey.“We have no alternative. We have to win for our youth. We have to win for our young people. And, frankly, we have to win for a lot of other people, not necessarily young, that are totally addicted and have serious, serious problems.”President Donald Trump speaks with administration officials on the opioid addiction crisis at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., on August 8. (NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images) President Donald Trump speaks with administration officials on the opioid addiction crisis at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., on August 8. (NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)Attorney General Jeff Sessions traveled to Columbus, Ohio, on Aug. 2 to announce the creation of the Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit, a pilot program of the Department of Justice.The unit will delve into data that shows “which physicians are writing opioid prescriptions at a rate that far exceeds their peers; how many of a doctor’s patients died within 60 days of an opioid prescription; the average age of the patients receiving these prescriptions; pharmacies that are dispensing disproportionately large amounts of opioids; and regional hot spots for opioid issues,” Sessions said in a statement.Sessions is also assigning 12 prosecutors to investigate and prosecute opioid-related health care fraud cases in a dozen locations around the country, including Dayton, Ohio.Plummer attended the announcement by Sessions and said it was “very encouraging, because we have been experiencing this problem now for over four years and, finally, our federal government is realizing this is turning into an epidemic.”“It is good to know that the government is taking this seriously and they’re going to throw additional resources at this.”Get HelpIf you or someone you know needs help for an opioid addiction:Call the helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)Get resources online: SAMHSA.gov  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Share this article Show Discussion Share Follow Charlotte on Twitter: @charlottecuthbo An Addicted County and a Sheriff’s Cry for Help Opioid addiction is unrelenting in Ohio’s Montgomery County, but the sheriff’s resources are stretched too thin to make a dentBy Charlotte Cuthbertson August 23, 2017 Updated: October 6, 2017 US News Local police and paramedics help a man who is overdosing in the Drexel neighborhood of Dayton, Ohio, on Aug. 3, 2017. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times) last_img read more

Childrens ClimateChange Suit Temporarily Halted

first_img Children’s Climate-Change Suit Temporarily Halted by Chief Justice Roberts By Matthew Vadum October 23, 2018 Updated: October 23, 2018 Share this article Show Discussion The sun rises over the United States Supreme Court on the morning of July 10, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Alex Edelman/Getty Images) US News Chief Justice John Roberts temporarily blocked the scheduled Oct. 29 start of the trial of an unusual lawsuit in Oregon, in which a group of young people is seeking a declaration that the Constitution requires the federal government to take action against climate change.A limited-government group praised the decision.“The Supreme Court is acknowledging what we have really known all along: this is a policy issue that belongs in the Halls of Congress, not the courts,” Frank Maisano of the Policy Resolution Group told The Daily Caller. U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John G. Roberts in the East Conference Room of the Supreme Court in Washington on June 1, 2017. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)center_img The legal proceeding, according to critics, is a political stunt aimed at raising public awareness of environmentalist groups’ controversial claim that the consumption of oil and other fossil fuels boosts the emission of greenhouse gases which in turn leads to changes in the earth’s climate that could prove catastrophic in the long term.If the lawsuit succeeds at trial, the government could be required to develop a far-reaching policy to crack down on the emission of greenhouse gases throughout multiple sectors of the economy, a move that could inflict long-lasting damage on the economy without necessarily having much, if any, impact on climate change.The government already has significant regulatory power to curtail pollution, including the emission of greenhouse gases, but the Trump administration doesn’t wish to gain additional regulatory power in this arena. In fact, President Donald Trump has been on a crusade to cut bureaucratic red tape at the government, in order to promote economic expansion and job growth.The Trump administration, and before it, the Obama administration, have tried to have the lawsuit dismissed. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rejected a request in March by the Trump administration to throw out the case, saying such a move would be premature. The full Supreme Court itself was asked to review the case earlier this year, but declined to do so.The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Oregon on Aug. 12, 2015, by 21 young plaintiffs who then ranged in age from 10 to 21, is known as Juliana v. United States. In it, the plaintiffs claim the United States has known for more than 50 years that carbon dioxide “pollution from burning fossil fuels was causing global warming and dangerous climate change, and that continuing to burn fossil fuels would destabilize the climate system on which present and future generations of our nation depend for their well-being and survival.” A natural gas pump jack in Lost Hills, California on March 24, 2014. (David McNew/Getty Images) Despite knowing that the use of fossil fuels would “significantly endanger” the plaintiffs, the government continued allowing those fuels to be used and sources of the fuels to be developed, the legal complaint states.Specifically, the lawsuit singles out the Jordan Cove liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Coos Bay, Oregon, which it claims “will significantly increase the harm” caused by fossil fuels and “enhances the cumulative danger caused” by the government’s actions protecting and promoting the use of fossil fuels.The plaintiffs want the court to declare that the government has “violated” and continues to violate the plaintiffs’ “fundamental constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property by causing dangerous [carbon dioxide] concentrations in the atmosphere and dangerous government interference with a stable climate system.” The plaintiffs are seeking an injunction preventing the government “from further violations of the Constitution underlying each claim for relief.”In a legal memorandum dated Oct. 19, Roberts ordered the beginning of the trial delayed, and temporarily halted the pre-trial fact-finding process, Bloomberg News reports. The chief justice gave plaintiffs until Oct. 24 to respond to the Trump administration’s emergency request, dated Oct. 18, to prevent the trial from moving forward.“We are confident once Chief Justice Roberts and the full court receive the youth plaintiffs’ response to defendants’ mischaracterization of their case, the trial will proceed,” said plaintiffs’ attorney Julia Olson. Share  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   last_img read more

Former Assistant Attorney General John Carlin L

first_imgFormer Assistant Attorney General John Carlin (L) and Assistant Attorney General John Demers appear in the panel “Dawn of the Code War” at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington on Jan. 15, 2019. (Jennifer Zeng/The Epoch Times) Share this article Share  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Show Discussioncenter_img WASHINGTON—The United States is at the beginning of an era of cyberwarfare with China and several other adversaries, and needs to take vigorous actions to fight and win this war, two Justice Department (DOJ) experts said.Referring to the national security threats in cyberspace the United States is facing, John Carlin, former assistant attorney general in the DOJ’s National Security Division, said: “We are at the beginning of this space. And we are still feeling out what red lines look like. But it’s begun.”John Demers, assistant attorney general, National Security Division, said: “There is a lot going on in this space. Just keep your eyes open. We are not talking about history. We are talking about the present and the future.”Carlin published the book “Dawn of the Code War” last October to discuss the rise of cyber threats from U.S. adversaries, and the strategies that have been developed to combat them. He and Demers appeared at a panel named after his book at the Center for Strategic and International Studies on Jan. 15.Demers shared some behind-the-scenes stories about some of the attacks.“What they are stealing is not national secrets. It is things like email telling the pricing for a solar company, so they could price dump, right below what that solar company could bear,” he said. “And then, to add insult to injury, after that solar company went bankrupt, and sued for unfair trade practices, they stole the whole litigation strategy out from under them.“And we put together an attachment showing when this activity happened. From 9 a.m. in the morning, until around noon, it spikes. It decreases from noon to 1 p.m.: lunch break. It increases again from 1 to 6 p.m. It decreases overnight, on weekends, and on Chinese holidays.“So the former prosecutor and I would say, ‘Circumstantial evidence: This is coming from China.’ ”Demers said that in the last eight years, 90 percent of the DOJ’s cases alleging economic espionage involve China.“There is an international norm, that is, the intelligence agencies [of] countries do not steal commercial and intellectual property. Period. We don’t do it.“The reason I know that there is an international norm is that in the last eight years, 90 percent of the economic espionage cases we have charged involved one country, and that’s China. Which means the rest of the world isn’t doing it, either,” Demers said.In a Senate hearing on “China’s Non-Traditional Espionage Against the United States: The Threat and Potential Policy Responses” in December, the People’s Republic of China was named as the greatest threat to U.S. economy and national security.General Keith Alexander called China’s estimated gains from economic espionage of up to $600 billion, “the greatest transfer of wealth in history.”Indictments and SanctionsBoth Carlin and Demers said that, given the credibility of the U.S. justice system, indictment is a very good tool to tackle the problem, as it will let the American public know how serious the “code war” is.Another good tool is sanctions.Carlin said, “Another tool that I think is not being used enough, which was signed into effect under an executive order by President [Barack] Obama, and is being signed again with the same declaration of economic emergency by President [Donald] Trump, is the executive order that allows the sanctioning not just on the cyber actors who steal information, but on the companies who benefit from the stolen secrets.”On April 1, 2015, Obama signed an executive order “Blocking the Property of Certain Persons Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities,” authorizing targeted sanctions against individuals or entities whose actions in cyberspace result in significant threats to the national security, foreign policy, economic health, or financial stability of the United States.In 2015, Obama and Chinese leader Xi Jinping reached an agreement, in which “the United States and China agree that neither country’s government will conduct or knowingly support cyber-enabled theft of intellectual property, including trade secrets or other confidential business information, with the intent of providing competitive advantages to companies or commercial sectors.”However, Demers said that it was very frustrating that instead of abiding by the agreement, “some countries are providing a safe harbor, at best, to criminals, and worse, are working with those criminals.”On Dec. 20, 2018, the United States charged two Chinese hackers associated with the Ministry of State Security in China with an extensive global computer-intrusion campaign carried out over more than a decade.Demers said the significance of the case was that it was the first indictment against Chinese hackers after the Obama–Xi cyber agreement.Demers said he hopes the indictment could lay a foundation for later groundwork for other agencies, so they could use their authority to shine a spotlight on this. It could also help members of Congress become aware of these activities. US News Experts: US Must Be Ready for Cyberwar By Jennifer Zeng January 17, 2019 Updated: January 17, 2019last_img read more

The stage for the Republican presidential debate

first_imgThe stage for the Republican presidential debate, hosted by CNN, at The Venetian hotel in Las Vegas, Nev., on Dec. 15, 2015. (L.E. Baskow/AFP/Getty Images)  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Share Review of Russia Investigation Coverage Reveals Lineup of False News By Petr Svab March 26, 2019 Updated: March 27, 2019 With special counsel Robert Mueller wrapping up his probe and recommending no further charges, legacy media’s breathless coverage of the theory that Donald Trump colluded with Russia to usurp the presidency suffered a gut punch.On the nightly newscasts of just three broadcast networks—ABC, CBS, and NBC—a combined 2,284 minutes of “collusion” coverage has aired since Jan. 20, 2017, the Media Research Center reported. That doesn’t include the thousands upon thousands of articles published by legacy press outlets and the avalanche of coverage on cable networks.The coverage has been marked with embarrassing mistakes and false reports, such as those repeatedly promising a smoking gun on the collusion theory, only to be debunked or later retracted.Comey Will ‘Refute’ Trump?A day before former FBI Director James Comey testified to Congress on June 8, 2017, CNN ran a story that claimed that Comey was “expected to refute Trump” and to “dispute … Trump’s interpretation of their conversations.”Trump said that Comey had repeatedly assured him that he was not under investigation. But CNN reported that three “sources familiar with Comey’s thinking” had said Comey was going to explain that he had not given the president any such clear assurance.The next day, under oath, Comey said, “I offered that assurance.” 3 Resign at CNNJust a few weeks later on June 26, 2017, CNN reporter Thomas Frank, editor Eric Lichtblau, and executive editor Lex Haris resigned over their involvement in a debunked story about Trump’s then-adviser Anthony Scaramucci. The story claimed, among other issues, that the Treasury was looking into whether Scaramucci discussed lifting sanctions at a meeting with a Russian banker during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, four days before Trump’s inauguration. CNN eventually deleted the story and apologized to Scaramucci.Neither ‘Donations’ nor ‘Donor’On Aug. 31, 2017, NBC News claimed that “Paul Manafort’s notes from a controversial Trump Tower meeting with Russians during the 2016 presidential campaign included the word ‘donations,’ near a reference to the Republican National Committee,” according to “two sources briefed on the evidence.”Manafort shortly served as Trump’s campaign manager and was recently sentenced for crimes probed by Mueller but unrelated to the campaign or the “collusion” allegations.NBC News edited its story by the next day to say that Manafort’s notes actually only included the word “donor,” according to one of its sources. But “government officials and others who have looked at the notes” told Politico that not even the word “donor” appeared in the notes, which were “not seen as damaging to the Trump family or campaign officials.”Republicans Paid for the Dossier?Multiple journalists made the erroneous claim that Republicans initially paid for the infamous Steele dossier, a collection of unsubstantiated claims about alleged Trump–Russia collusion. Some Trump opponents on the Republican side indeed hired the same opposition research firm, Fusion GPS, to dig up information on Trump. But they withdrew the funding before the firm hired Steele for the job.It was actually the Democrats and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who paid for the dossier.Ross Versus DowOn Dec. 1, 2017, ABC News’s Brian Ross said on air that Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn was “prepared to testify that President Trump, as a candidate … ordered him to make contact with the Russians, which contradicts all that Donald Trump has said at this point.”Shortly after, the stock market tumbled with the Dow Jones Industrial Average losing 350 points before recovering some.Yet hours later, Ross came back with a “clarification”: Trump only asked Flynn to contact the Russians after he was elected. Indeed, it was Flynn’s job during the transition to contact representatives of foreign governments to lay down the diplomatic groundwork for the incoming administration.Ross was suspended for the gaffe and later left the network.Trump Jr. Knew—Just Like Everybody ElseJust a week later, CNN extensively covered a bombshell revelation: Donald Trump Jr. was given early access on Sept. 4, 2016, to the emails of former Secretary of State Colin Powell allegedly hacked by the Russians. Yet shortly after, multiple media reported that the supposedly incriminating message Trump Jr. received granting him access to the emails was actually sent on Sept. 14—a day after the emails were released publicly.Call to White House Tapped?On May 3, 2018, NBC News reported that federal investigators had, for weeks, wiretapped the phone lines of Trump’s then-lawyer Michael Cohen, “according to multiple senior officials and individuals with knowledge of the legal proceedings involving Cohen.” The story even stated that at least one call with the White House was intercepted. The claim was significant because wiretaps must be approved by a federal judge and require proof of an ongoing crime, said NBC News’s own analyst, Former U.S. Attorney Chuck Rosenberg, in the original article.But later that day, NBC News issued a correction and rewrote the story, saying that the investigators had looked at the log of who called or were called from Cohen’s lines rather than wiretapped them (listened to the calls themselves). The correction came after three senior U.S. officials disputed the original story, the correction stated.BuzzFeed RebuttedOn Jan. 18, BuzzFeed reported that Mueller’s office had learned about Trump instructing Cohen to lie to Congress. “Cohen then acknowledged those instructions during his interviews with that office,” the report stated.Yet, in a rare move, the Mueller office rebutted the report.“BuzzFeed’s description of specific statements to the special counsel’s office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen’s congressional testimony are not accurate,” the office’s spokesman Peter Carr said in a statement.The reporters behind the story, Jason Leopold and Anthony Cormier, still tried to defend the story, giving somewhat diverging details on whether they had actually seen the underlying documents they claimed as one of their sources.But The New York Times and The Washington Post, citing anonymous sources, reported that the Mueller statement was meant as a full rebuttal of the core claims of the BuzzFeed story. Follow Petr on Twitter: @petrsvab center_img Share this article US News Show Discussionlast_img read more

A judge in the antidiscrimination case of former

first_img A judge in the anti-discrimination case of former Google engineer James Damore denied the company’s attempts to have the suit thrown out and allowed the plaintiffs to proceed to a phase where they can prompt the tech company to produce data and answer questions on its hiring practices.Damore and another plaintiff are alleging that Google discriminated against them based on their political leanings. They filed a class-action lawsuit in January on behalf of all job applicants who claim Google discriminated against them because they were white or Asian, or because of their politics.Google argued it would be impossible for it to produce hiring data because several million people applied for its jobs during the four-year period covered by the suit, Damore’s lawyer, Harmeet Dhillon, told Fox News on June 10.“The court said, ‘No, you have to allow discovery on this and we are going to find out if you discriminate on these bases,’” she said.The suit was filed in Santa Clara Superior Court in California. It was forced by Google into arbitration by a third party, Dhillon said.While arbitration can be disadvantageous to plaintiffs, she noted that California law requires a degree of transparency regarding hiring practices and the discovery will allow the plaintiffs “to delve into [Google’s] employment practices and see what they do behind the scenes.” “It’s a notoriously opaque process,” she said, referring to Google’s employment process.According to the lawsuit, “Google employees who expressed views deviating from the majority view at Google on political subjects … such as ‘diversity’ hiring policies, ‘bias sensitivity,’ or ‘social justice’ were/are singled out, mistreated, and systematically punished and terminated from Google, in violation of their legal rights.”Damore was fired in 2018 after an internal memo he wrote went viral. He argued in the 10-page document that Google had trouble hiring women to tech and leadership roles partly because the jobs catered more to the aptitudes and proclivities that are generally more prominent among men. Damore had proposed tweaking the jobs so they would be more inviting to women, rather than discriminating against men in hiring.Google CEO Sundar Pichai said Damore’s memo was in violation of the company’s Code of Conduct because it advanced “harmful gender stereotypes.”Google BiasGoogle and other large tech companies have been known to have a predominantly left-leaning workforce.More than 90 percent of all political donations made by Alphabet employees, including Google and YouTube, went to Democrats between 2004 and 2018, according to a report by GovPredict, a research and analytics company, citing FEC records.A video recorded at a Google company meeting after the 2016 election showed top leaders bemoaning the victory of Donald Trump over his opponent, Hillary Clinton.“I certainly find this election deeply offensive, and I know many of you do, too,” Google co-founder Sergey Brin said at the meeting.Trump and other Republicans have accused Google of putting conservatives at a disadvantage in its products.“Google & others are suppressing voices of Conservatives and hiding information and news that is good,” Trump wrote in an Aug. 28, 2018, tweet. “They are controlling what we can & cannot see. This is a very serious situation-will be addressed!”The tweet came after PJ Media reported that among the top 100 search results for “Trump” on Google News, 96 percent of them were from left-leaning media. The Epoch Times conducted a similar experiment on multiple dates, each time producing a similar result.Google has denied political bias in its products.Correction: A previous version of this report incorrectly characterized the order issued by a judge in James Damore’s lawsuit. The Epoch Times regrets the error. Follow Petr on Twitter: @petrsvab Judge Denies Google’s Attempts to Stop Suit Alleging Political Bias By Petr Svab June 10, 2019 Updated: June 10, 2019 Show Discussion Share this article The Google logo outside its office building in New York on June 3, 2019. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images) center_img Politics  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Sharelast_img read more

ACA Hosts 6th Annual National Paddlesports Conference September 2729 at the Mt

first_img Tumblr on September 24, 2013 Pinterest By CBN Google+ In partnership with Tumalo Creek Kayak & Canoe and the Bend Paddle Trail Alliance, the ACA has planned a full schedule of events for the 2013 NPC, including a silent auction to benefit stewardship programs, educational sessions, a river clean up, and guided rafting and kayaking trips down the Deschutes River. The Reel Paddling Film Festival will take place on Thursday evening, benefiting the Bend Paddle Trail Alliance (BPTA) and the ACA’s stewardship initiatives. The ACA will present BPTA with an award on Friday evening at the Pickin’ & Paddlin’ Event at Tumalo Creek Kayak & Canoe. On Saturday, the annual ACA Awards Ceremony & Banquet will feature keynote speaker and Executive Director of the ACA, Wade Blackwood. All guests at the NPC will be welcome to attend courses or sessions at the Whitewater Symposium, simultaneously taking place at the Mt. Bachelor Village Resort throughout the weekend. Founded in 1880, The American Canoe Association (ACA) is a national nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization serving the broader paddling public by providing education related to all aspects of paddling; stewardship support to help protect paddling environments; and sanctioning of programs and events to promote paddlesport competition and recreation. The ACA has over 20,000 members, and 300 paddling clubs and affiliated organizations.  The ACA sponsors over 1,400 events each year, including 200 races.  The ACA education program has an estimated outreach of 800,000 people a year. www.americancanoe.org E-Headlines Share.center_img Facebook ACA Hosts 6th Annual National Paddlesports Conference September 27-29 at the Mt. Bachelor Village Resort in Bend. 0 Twitter LinkedIn Emaillast_img read more

OSUCascades of Bend Oregon Launches Hospitality Management Degree

first_img E-Headlines LinkedIn 0 Pinterest Google+ Facebook Share. on January 8, 2015center_img Twitter By CBN Oregon State University – Cascades is adding a new bachelor’s degree in hospitality management, filling a need for highly-skilled employees in one of Oregon’s most important industries. OSU-Cascades will begin offering hospitality management classes in fall 2015. The multi-disciplinary degree program will prepare graduates for a wide range of hospitality careers within a corporate setting, in a hospitality operations setting, or as an entrepreneur.Among the possible career fields are hotel management, cruise operations, conference services, restaurant ownership and food and beverage services. It is the only degree program of its kind in Oregon.“We are thrilled to offer a program that will attract students and faculty, and provide talented interns and graduates for the lodging and restaurant industry in the state and region, ultimately increasing its significant contribution to Oregon’s economy,” said Becky Johnson, vice president of OSU-Cascades.The branch campus’s newest degree is the first four-year hospitality degree to be offered in Oregon in more than 20 years and will cater to the state’s hospitality and tourism industry, the second-largest industry in Oregon.OSU-Cascades is an ideal location for a hospitality management program. Tourism and hospitality businesses are among the largest employers in Central Oregon and the industry is currently experiencing a surge in growth.The hospitality management program will be led by Executive-in-Residence Todd Montgomery and will be offered through the OSU College of Business. The multi-disciplinary program will include classes in management, human resources, food and beverage operations, technology within the hospitality sector, and service delivery.Students will also complete a business minor with courses in marketing and accounting, and be required to participate in internships and other work experience programs. The program is expected to draw interest from high school students, community college transfer students and culinary institute graduates.“Our goal is to prepare our students for key positions in the hospitality industry in Central Oregon, throughout the state and beyond,” Montgomery said. “We want to give them the skills and tools they need to be leaders and innovators in the hospitality field.”Budget cuts forced the closure of a similar hospitality degree program at OSU in the early 1990s; students then sought programs and careers outside of the state. Industry leaders in Oregon have been advocating for the program’s return and support from the state and local hospitality and tourism industry helped make the new degree possible. In 2012, the branch campus received gifts totaling $320,000 to develop the new program.Located in Bend, Oregon, Oregon State University’s branch campus features outstanding faculty in degree programs that reflect Central Oregon’s vibrant economy and abundant natural resources. Eighteen undergraduate majors, 30 minors and options, and three graduate programs include computer science, energy systems engineering, exercise and sport science, hospitality management, and tourism and outdoor leadership. The branch campus plans to expand to a four-year university beginning fall 2015.www.osucascades.eduwww.facebook.com/osucascadeswww.twitter.com/osu_cascades OSU-Cascades of Bend, Oregon Launches Hospitality Management Degree Tumblr Emaillast_img read more

Breaking Barriers Conference – Life Beyond Labels Conference in Redmond

first_img Friday, April 29 is the 2nd annual Breaking Barriers Conference. The conference is guided by a vision for an inclusive community where barriers don’t exist and labels such as disability have no meaning. This conference will serve as a platform to share the unique and diverse perspectives of all members of our community. Together they will learn to create a truly inclusive society, where all people will enjoy a fulfilling and self-directed life beyond labels.The conference is open to the public and is intended to provide a platform for people with disabilities, families, teachers and service providers. This year’s keynote presenter is Matt Roloff, who is best known for starring in the hit TLC reality show Little People, Big World.Break out groups and panelists will explore themes like positive behavior support in the family home, future career expectations and exploration, keeping behaviorally challenging students in the classroom, and assistive technology, and more.This conference is made possible by local and state partners like Autism Society of Oregon, Central Oregon Disability Support Network (CODSN), Deschutes County and many others.Registration is required: http://www.breakingbarriersoregon.com/When: Friday, April 29 from 9am – 4pmLocation: Deschutes County Expo Center – Middle Sister Conference Center, 3800 SW Airport Way, Redmond, OR 97756 LinkedIn Tumblr Email on April 28, 2016 Google+ Share. Twittercenter_img E-Headlines Facebook Breaking Barriers Conference – Life Beyond Labels Conference in Redmond Pinterest 0 By CBNlast_img read more

How to Make a Splash At Your Next Conference

first_img E-Headlines 0 Facebook LinkedIn Share. How to Make a Splash At Your Next Conference Google+ on May 14, 2019center_img Conferences are a great way to make business connections, generate leads for your business, and learn new insights about your industry. But in a sea of booths and custom pens, how do you stand out amongst your competitors? We’re giving you some tips to help you make the most of your conference table buy-in and turn casual conversations into qualified leads.Offer useful (and cool) customized goodsTake a moment to walk around a conference and you’ll quickly be able to tell which goodie bags are popular, and which ones are just missing the mark. There are the classics: the pens, the sticky notes, and the customized notebooks that are often swept up early on in the event. But then there are the other items that just don’t seem to fare as well, because they’re not as useful or valuable as their more popular counterparts.When choosing which branded items to pass out at your next conference, consider these three things before placing your order.Is it useful?Is it trendy or relevant at the moment?Will attendees find this item valuable?Once you identify which branded items make sense for your business and budget, be strategic about how you give them away. Less expensive items like pens are great to have out on the table for attendees to pick up as they pass by; while Items like a custom Yeti cooler would make a great raffle prize. Simply collect contact information in exchange for a raffle entry and you’ll have people volunteering to connect and learn more about your organization.Set up a photo boothA photo booth is a fun and cost-effective way to attract conference attendees to your table, and an even better way to establish personal connections with them. Set up a custom themed photo booth (with a touch of your own branding). Offer to email the participant their photos in exchange for their consent to accept marketing emails. It’s a win-win for both of you—bonus points if they share and tag you on social media!Host an eventSponsoring a conference happy hour or dinner may not be the most budget-friendly tactic to make an impression at your next conference event. But, this strategy can give you the opportunity to get to know your colleagues and connections on a more intimate level than simply engaging in small talk as they pass by the rows and rows of booth at the conference center. If you have a few individuals or teams you’re really interested in working with, wow them with a private invite to your event and they’ll surely remember your brand long after the conference has concluded.Engage attendeesRather than having the same old setup with info packets and business cards at your table, make an impression with conference attendees by hosting activities at your booth! Trust us, word will spread fast if you’re giving away the best food or swag bags on the conference floor.Here are a few ideas to help you revamp your setup:Invest in a prize wheel for visitors to spinHost a trivia sessionCoordinate a social media scavenger huntGo all out with a silent discoBoost your brandingBefore you pack up your conference setup and get ready to flex your networking skills, you need to make sure your branding is on-point. From your nametags, to signage and social media, it’s important to have a strong brand image if you want to make an impression on thousands of conference attendees. Connect with other companies and attendees ahead of time by advertising your plans to attend the upcoming event, and call out any workshops or events you’re hosting by posting on your social media channels. Get a retweet from the event organizer? Great, that’s free press—and what’s more valuable than that?Sponsor the wifi serviceThe moment conference attendees arrive to the event, they’ll be connecting to the wifi—meaning they’ll be exposed to wifi sponsors with signage throughout the event and online. This is an unconventional (and expensive) way to make a splash, but it’s repeated exposure and familiarity that convert. Check with the event’s organizer preceding the event to inquire about wifi sponsorship opportunities.In conclusionStale booths and uninspiring signage, step aside. Follow these tips to make a lasting impression at your next conference event. Tumblr By CBN Twitter Email Pinterestlast_img read more

8 Management Behaviors That Drive Change Without Crisis

first_img Filed Under: Advice, Management, Resources, Strategic In this era of rapid market and technological change, I know I have to challenge my small business advisory clients to keep innovating and stay ahead of the game. As you can imagine, it is human nature to look for a stable and unchanging business process, after all the pivots and chaos of starting your business. Innovation driven only by crises is not leadership and growth.For example, I’m even getting worried about Apple not showing the kind of innovative leaps that Steve Jobs was famous for. Per a well-known Apple evangelist, Guy Kawasaki, real innovation is a lot more than “simply making the iPhone smaller or the iPad bigger.” Apple needs a product that jumps to the next curve. Customers and analysts are always looking for innovation indicators.These indicators are a mindset and actions that every one of us can develop and demonstrate, without any special birthright, genes, or advanced intelligence. I will suggest to you as a business owner and entrepreneur that you focus on certain key behaviors will drive innovation without waiting for the next competitive crisis:Be outspoken in communicating proactive required change. Andy Grove was a master at this, with his well-known motto that only the paranoid survive. His mantra was built on evidence that the number of transistors on a chip doubles every 18 months, changing everything. He didn’t wait for competitors to prove current products obsolete.Always be looking “around the corner” for paradigm shifts. Other champions of innovation, including Elon Musk with SpaceX and Hyperloop, always seem to be building future opportunities from trends and technology turns. They have the courage to make bold decisions, often contrary to conventional market research and linear thinking.Tie your business to a higher social purpose for inspiration. I find that entrepreneurs who change ahead of the times usually start with the “big” vision of making the world a better place. If you, like John Mackey with Whole Foods, are driven by a cause, rather than just money, you may be bending the market rather than have it bend you.Create and maintain a sense of urgency for the future. Too many companies try to force a sense of employee urgency through deadlines and performance goals. The best companies, including Google, create urgency within their team by engaging them in the business, addressing personal needs and flexibility, and building win-win relationships.Isolate new product teams from decimation by daily crises. Today’s business teams are typically understaffed, so expecting them to create the next generation of innovations will not work. Make sure that new projects are an ongoing part of your business, with control of resources, and responsibility to deliver results, like other business components.Allocate funds for intrapreneurship and acquisitions. In addition to investing in internal new innovative ideas, every successful company regularly looks outside to buy innovation, and use it to change their business. IBM, for example, regularly buys about a dozen companies a year to supercharge their own innovation efforts.Create positions for exemplary talent from other disciplines. If your business hires only to fill existing openings, it is falling behind, and ripe for competitive crisis. You need to always be scouring your industry and universities for thought leaders and influencers, and working to attract them to your company with new and creative positions.Set metrics and rewards specifically for innovation. What would happen in your company if all bonuses were predicated on at least 20 percent of revenue coming from products launched within the last three years? People work on what they get measured on. Metrics can be used to change ingrained behavior, as well as build revenue.These behaviors which accelerate innovation apply to you as a leader at all levels – from an entrepreneur with a small team to every business executive in a large corporation, to the chief executive of a multi-national conglomerate. Every one of us must actively be inventing the future, rather than reacting to it. It’s a key part of working on the business, rather than just working in it.Reprinted by permission.PREVIOUS POSTNEXT POST 8 Management Behaviors That Drive Change Without CrisisAugust 27, 2018 by Martin Zwilling 254SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedinlast_img read more

A Personal Saga To Understanding Hardware Market Opportunities

first_img Filed Under: Hardware Tagged With: Anki, Dr. Andre Geim, Dr. Paul Thibado, Earthdas, Gigafactories, Lara Sorokanich, littleBits, Nawa Technologies, RobotGalaxy, Sphero, Ulrik Grape A Personal Saga To Understanding Hardware Market OpportunitiesMay 14, 2019 by Oliver Mitchell 250SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedin The shock ripped through the industry, on almost every social media platform techies were bemoaning the loss of Anki. As a former robo-toy maker, I read the epitaph months earlier in the title of Lara Sorokanich’s Medium post, “Anki’s AI Robot Is a Delightful (and Expensive) Desk Toy.” When asked this week to comment, I could only lean on my experiences in founding, and eventually shuttering, RobotGalaxy.My startup was launched in 2006 to address what we believed was an underserved retail market – boys. The build-your-own robot concept opened to roaring fanfare reviewed on almost every news broadcast and morning show, driving stratospheric opening sales. The experience combined so many different educational mediums, such as Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) as kids transformed into galaxy explorers in constructing, programming and launching their very own mechanical buddies, supported by a virtual world and rich comic book backstory. So, what happened that led to its closure in 2012?After the economic downturn in 2008, we had to face the reality that robot toys fall low on Maslow’s “Hierarchy Of Needs.” This actualization unveiled the most important lesson learned that is applicable to Anki. Starting a toy business without marketing is next to impossible (and ultimately a waste of good money). As much as Anki was brilliant (and aimed mostly at adults) it was ultimately merchandised and viewed as a very costly unknown gadget without a movie. In the world of Marvel Avengers, almost every action figure and plaything is connected to a media property. Even LittleBits and Sphero licensed Star Wars characters to drive revenues. In retrospect, it would have been a better use of Anki’s $200 million to develop an entertainment property behind Cozmo and Vector before stocking inventory. While my schooling came at a smaller price tag, I swore to myself after RobotGalaxy that my next venture would be as vital as air.Thinking about mission-critical technologies, as I pen this piece my iPhone’s battery is blinking red. So many unmanned systems are dependent today on lithium-ion batteries from robots to drones to autonomous vehicles. This is driving an enormous demand to mine more of the mineral, which negatively impacts the environment and depletes natural resources. According to the 2015 US Geological Survey, “the world has enough known [lithium] reserves for about 365 years of current global production of about 37,000 tons per year.” However, this figure is based upon the usage four years ago, whereby only a third of lithium was utilized for batteries. Re-estimating the figure to include future projections of electric vehicles, especially with Elon Musk’s Gigafactories coming online, the report states that “Current demand will shoot up, way up, if these revolutions do happen. The 100 Gigafactories scenario could come true. And if that happens, the 365-year supply would be less than a 17-year supply.” In addition to the conservationist argument, lithium-ion is inefficient. As an example, recharging one’s Tesla at their supercharging station takes 40 minutes, compared to five minutes at the pump for a combustion engine.However, today we are on the cusp of major discoveries that promise to save the planet. Starting back in 2004, at the University of Manchester, a breakthrough new energy source was found inside the common pencil. Graphene is 200 times stronger than steel and more conductive than any other known carbon-based material. Up until recently, it was layered within graphite and unable to be isolated into single layers. Then Dr. Andre Geim and his team were able to break it apart and conduct electricity through it. “For decades graphite was used by researchers as a kind of ‘philosopher’s stone’ that can deliver all probable and improbable phenomena including room-temperature superconductivity. Our work shows what is, in principle, possible in this material, at least when it is in its purest form,” exclaimed Dr. Geim.Twelve years later, researchers at the University of Arkansas took Dr. Geim’s work to the next level by creating a battery methodology to turn graphene into an unlimited supply of clean energy. Dr. Paul Thibado and his lab started to harvest energy from graphene by placing the material within a scaffolded grid of copper to produce ripples of electric current. In explaining the innovation, Dr. Thibado said, “This is the key to using the motion of 2D materials as a source of harvestable energy. Unlike atoms in a liquid, which move in random directions, atoms connected in a sheet of graphene move together. This means their energy can be collected using existing nanotechnology.” Thibado’s technology is micro-small as the graphene demonstrated only measures 10 microns across, enabling 20,000 pieces of graphene to fit on the head of a pin (hence, less mining). This means a tiny graphene membrane could power an Apple watch forever, without ever being charged. Thibado calls his technology the “Vibration Energy Harvester” a self-charging power source for the future. The professor is aiming to take his innovation to the healthcare space as “Self-powering enables smart bio-implants, which would profoundly impact society.”While still early in its development, graphene batteries are starting to be integrated into next-generation electronics and vehicles. Recently, Chinese manufacturer Dongxu Optoelectronics unveiled its “graphene supercapacitor” that is the size of a laptop battery that transforms hours of charging time into minutes. Spanish startup Earthdas plans to market later this year its own battery for e-bikes and motorcycles boasting of a 12x faster charging time than current lithium-ion batteries. One of the most exciting use cases for this innovation is incorporating graphene into the bodies of automobiles. A French company, Nawa Technologies, is already working on developing flexible polymers or coatings that are built directly into a vehicle’s chassis. As the company’s CEO, Ulrik Grape, boasts, “In a way, it will be like having a battery-free car.” Further validating Grape’s statement, Lamborghini partnered with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to develop a graphene-enhanced supercapacitor built directly into its car body.The demise of Anki and RobotGalaxy should be seen as part of the natural maturity of the industry, enabling for ground-breaking inventions to push the entire ecosystem further. Who knows, perhaps the doctoral students working on graphene today were inspired by the robot toys of their youth? Then again, it could have been Tony Stark who gave them the idea of alternative energy in the first place?Reprinted by permission.PREVIOUS POSTNEXT POSTlast_img read more

Carmelo Anthony Just Invested in This FoodTech Startup

first_imgCarmelo Anthony Just Invested in This FoodTech StartupOctober 13, 2016 by AlleyWatch 374SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedin Filed Under: #NYCTech, AlleyTalk, FoodTech, Funded in the Alley, Funded in the Alley, Funding News, Interviews, News, Startups You know you want to try new food, but where do you start? The choices can be overwhelming.  Yelp can give you ideas, but you’ll need to sort through annoying reviews and bad pictures. Instagram will show you nice pictures but not tell you if it’s filtered or how it tastes; just looks alone. Where should you turn? Wine n Dine. This food discovery platform that allows you to explore pictures of actual dishes people are eating around you, making food discovery easy and fun. Simply scroll through and as your mouth begins to salivate over enticing items, you can save them for later. Hoping to expand your palate, the company just raised a $2.5M seed round.AlleyWatch chatted with cofounders Adam Cooper and Josh Stern about the young startup and its first round of funding.Who were your investors and how much did you raise? We raised a $2.5M seed round led by Jordache Ventures, The Chetrit Group and Carmelo Anthony’s fund Melo7 Tech Partners.Tell us about your product or service.We’re a dish and restaurant social discovery tool. The product is super simple. Our users post recommendations (it’s overwhelmingly positive) of dishes and restaurants they love. When people see something they like they save it to their ‘wanna try’ section and then go to the spots to try food they’ve discovered. It all wraps up into our ‘explore’ section, which algorithmically takes the pulse of a city. We have a really unique take on menus and everything is organized visually and by popularity — we’re the only player doing this in the space.What inspired you to start the company?Josh and I have been friends forever. Our friends seemed pretty frustrated by Yelp and were constantly taking screenshots and sharing photos of food from Instagram. So we built something simple and shared it with our friends to help solve the problem. At the time I was working in venture debt with tech companies and Josh was working on a concierge app called I Know The Chef. Our friends loved what we did and started sharing it with their friends, so we took the leap!How is it different?Our big differentiator is being dish centric. We’re the only app that gathers very granular dish data and we lead people to discover new spots not by the restaurants themselves, but by the awesome food they serve. We’re also super positive, as over 90% of our posts are positive. We’re recommendation based, not review, and it’s proven to be a valuable and unique differentiator for our community.What market you are targeting and how big is it?Everybody loves food and everyone eats. This year, restaurants will bring in over $700B in revenue and we want to position ourselves at the forefront of discovery. Additionally, our dish data is unique and valuable and we’re very confident that the multi-billion dollar publishing industry will take notice.What’s your business model?We’re currently pre-revenue, but plan to monetize our dish data, as well as position ourselves as a valuable advertising platform.What are customers saying thus far?Our beta users absolutely love the app and they’re sharing it with friends at an incredible rate…our growth thus far has been completely word of mouth. Users constantly use the ‘wanna try’ feature and love being able to search by specific dishes. A new feature, our popularity based menus, are very quickly becoming a must look when users sit down at restaurants.What was the funding process like?We learned a ton through our initial raise, it was a very fun and exciting team. At the time it was only Josh and I, but people were coming in the door fast. Investors were keen on the potential market size and the uniqueness of the dish centric product. We got lucky and linked up with people who really believed in not only us, but the product as well.What are the biggest challenges that you faced while raising capital?To be honest, we got hot quickly and the fundraising process was a breeze, though we know that’s not always the case. Having launched our first company, getting organized from a legal perspective was hard, but we managed!What factors about your business led your investors to write the check?Early traction and huge potential. A lot of players, some massive, are in the space, but our unique data driven approach to the dish was a big winner.What are the milestones you plan to achieve in the next six months?We’re totally focused on post growth. The more posts, the easier it is for us to make precise recommendations and leverage our data. We’ve set goals to add millions and million of posts by the end of this year. We want to be the index for image driven menus across the internet, so this is key. On the user front, we want multiply, but maintain our high engagement and retention. To us, a highly engaged healthy user base is far more valuable than a massive MAU number that churns out over time. We’ll continue to focus on building a great product, but the only way to do that is to continue adding smart and hardworking people to our team.What advice can you offer companies in New York that do not have a fresh injection of capital in the bank?Work as hard as you possibly can to get to product market fit and don’t be distracted by anything else. If you can solve a real problem, engaged users will come and smart money will follow.Where do you see the company going now over the near term?Team, team, team. Building a great team will lead to a great product and success will follow. We’re extremely focused on team building, plus being smart with our funding. We’re rapidly growing in cities around the world, so focusing on where we can generate quality and sustained users is imperative to us. Adding a precise and relevant recommendation engine is a huge focus for us on the product front.What’s your favorite rooftop bar in NYC to unwind?We actually love hanging out at The Whitney Museum Rooftop. It’s got incredible views and truly let’s us unwind. You can find us there pretty frequently. It’s nice to get distracted by the incredible art — it inspires us to build.PREVIOUS POSTNEXT POSTlast_img read more

10 Lessons Learned from New York VCs

first_img Filed Under: #NYCTech, AlleyTalk, Funding, The Watch, Venture Capital The East Coast startup scene, namely Silicon Alley, is unlike the West Coast, namely Silicon Valley. The West Coast scene is about being consumer-focused and getting a large scale user adoption. Take a look at Facebook that is connecting everyone in the world, or AirBnb which is helping individuals to belong everywhere. On the other hand, the East Coast startups are deeply segmented into multiple industries: fintech, healthtech, foodtech, fashiontech, edtech, and other industry-focused tech. With that deep segmentation comes a sharp focus. Check out Ordego that promises to deliver convenience-store items within a 15-minute timeframe, or Knewton, an adaptive learning platform that personalizes teaching method for every child.Recently at Techweek, Reza Chowdhury, the CEO and Founder of AlleyWatch, sat down with a panel of New York Venture Capitalists (VCs) to talk about their approach to investments, the future of tech, and what resources their funds provide in addition to money.Learn 10 lessons from these VCs:•Jonathan Lehr, Managing Director, Work-Bench, an enterprise technology VC fund with a high focus on community and propelling the New York startup ecosystem.•Avi Savar, CEO, Dreamit, “a global network of entrepreneurs, investors and corporate innovators on a mission to Find The Future.” Dreamit is focused on pre-early stage, “seed-to-soil” companies.•John Frankel, Founding Partner, ff Venture Capital, “the most engaged technology venture capital firm in NYC.” The firm is focused on providing resources to help teams scale from 3-10 to 30-40 people.Lesson 1: The East Coast Term Sheet Has More than Two LinesCompared to Silicon Valley, the players are a tad more grounded in numbers and revenue in Silicon Alley. If your company is in the process of being evaluated by a New York VC, be prepared for a thorough due-diligence process. As Lehr pointed out, “New York is grounded on cynical practicality.” The notion of working on a project for three- four years prior to brainstorming monetization tactics does not work here. In New York, people are focused on making money; thus, be prepared to show how you plan to realistically make money with your venture.Lesson 2: The future is indeed in AR, AI, and VRIf you plan to start a company in New York, learn these acronyms by heart:•   AI – Artificial Intelligence•   AR – Augmented Reality•   VR – Virtual RealityFrankel calls Artificial Intelligence a dominant area for investments in the next 5-15 years. He says, “We normally look to invest in companies that make things ten times better. AI makes things a hundred, a thousand times better.” Savar is excited about AR and VR transforming education, healthcare, and retail, making digital experiences in these industries more meaningful and immersive. He brings up an example of a knee replacement embedded with a chip that informs a patient’s doctor about recovery progress.Lesson 3: Evaluating with Few or No MetricsWhen a new disruptive technology evolves, it is hard to put a finger on it, or measure and dissect it. Even if the metrics for evaluating your company’s success are not yet set or standardized, think about the impact you are making. Savar recommends mapping it to the pain point you are trying to solve. How are you making things better, faster, or cheaper? For example, take x.ai, a fully automated assistant. Today, less than 1% of workforce has a personal assistant. How many hours a day will you save by using this tool?Lesson 4: De-Risk Assumptions with your CustomersSavar’s company places a heavy focus on customer immersion. “With ideas you can get emotional. – says Savar. “We have a model of de-risking any assumptions that we identify with a company’s business model by going through internal data and research, but primarily through customer navigation.” Get on a phone or meet a real person to validate and de-risk your assumptions.VCs understand that obstacles are inevitable, but it’s best to fully analyze any potential risks before making a bet.Lesson 5: Be the First and Be NeededMySpace was one of the first movers in social media industry, but how often do we hear about it today? While bringing a novel idea to the market is still rewarded, it is important be first and needed. As an entrepreneur, you need to ensure that people actually want the product or service you are building. “You have to align your solution to the timing of the pain point. People are your buyers,” says Frankel.Lesson 6: Seek Warm IntroductionsVCs are swamped with a myriad of emails, meetings, and work functions. They are drowning in the deal flow, says Frankel. Thus, a warm introduction, when someone introduces you to a potential investor, works best. Check your LinkedIn, Facebook, or Snapchat account to find out how many degrees of separation there are between you and the investor you are trying to contact. Good news – there won’t be more than six! Your best bet is to find someone who looks like a present or a former colleague of the VC you are targeting or a person who works for the VCs portfolio company.Lehr says that there are over 200 events that Work-Bench organizes every year in their large workspace on 5th Avenue. Polish your pitch, get up, and head to those events. The standard pitch is 30-seconds, but I highly recommend to shorten it to 10 seconds – if modern advertisers can do it with 6-10 second video ads, you surely should be able to do it with your pitch.Lesson 7: Do Something Original to Get in Front of the InvestorsSavar recommends doing something that will make you stand out and fluff the VCs ego (Really? Does their egos need any more fluffing? :)) “If you can get in front of me in an interesting way, do it” says Savar.Lesson 8 (a long one): Do your Homework and be In the KnowThe VC game is for smart guys and gals. You need to do your homework and know your potential investor inside out.Prior to asking for an introduction or making your one-of-a-kind appearance in front of a VC, research the following questions:In what stage of the investment cycle is the company? Will you be the first or the last to apply for the investment? Timing matters!How many investments has the company already made? The deal flow increases with a span of time, says Frankel, and VCs need to continually re-evaluate their existing investments.Does the fund invest in companies similar to yours?Does your team meet the criteria the VC is looking for? Some VC funds are very specific about founding teams; for example, some won’t invest unless the team is diverse enough.Doing this homework will ensure that the VC swipes right when they get an intro to you, and may even throw a poke-ball at you to add your company to their portfolio.Lesson 9: Ensure 100% Accuracy in Everything You Send to a VCWhile 80% is “good enough,” when sending decks, emails, and other resources to a prospective VC, you need to ensure you are maxing it out to the perfect 100%. While your idea might be excellent, if the VC encounters misspellings or other errors in emails or materials you provide, it can turn them dawn. Notice, you almost stopped reading my article and were ready to throw it into a virtual trash-can when you saw “dawn”; it obviously should have been spelled “down,” but I wanted to highlight the effect your typo/misspelling could have on your dream VC.VCs want to see effort and thought put into your work from day 0 – before you even meet.Frankel advises, “Spell-check everything you send. Grammar-check everything you send. Be thoughtful and then be lucky.”Lesson 10: Investors Raise Money Just Like You Do“Raising money always sucks on either side,” says Savar. The VCs need to make a pitch to their investors and engage in a fundraising process that is very similar to the fundraising process of a new startup. “Fundraising process is about a narrative – what is your story, who is resonating with it, and why should we believe in your thesis.”Frankel adds that the VCs goal is to explain why we live in a startup economy and how meaningful returns are made. He observes that VC-world is the closest to capitalism in highly regulated financial markets: “It’s about the efficient allocation of capital. Good companies get funded. Bad companies don’t.”Lesson 11 (Bonus): How Investors Can Help Beyond Making InvestmentsChowdhury points out that smart money is better than dumb money, but dumb money is better than no money. However, what else do VC companies bring to the table besides money?Savar says that Dreamit has created a highly validated clustered ecosystem that can help entrepreneurs bypass the building steps – that usually take a long time – and get you in front of the enterprise buyers within two to four months. In addition, Dreamit focuses on the aforementioned customer immersion with a strong syndicated and co-investor network.Lehr highlights that Work-Bench helps companies navigate banks and big buyers. Work- Bench has fostered a large community, and produces summits and meet-up events that brings people together to create shared learning experiences. If you are one of Work- Bench’s portfolio companies, you will be placed in front of that talent. New York Enterprise Technology Meetup is among the most popular startup meetups in New York.Frankel describes a suite of services that ff Venture Capital offers to help companies scale. These include financial planning, accounting, help with logistics. The VC fund is willing to help with high-cost resources and bringing its portfolio ‘babies’ to success and yielding a high ROI.PREVIOUS POSTNEXT POST 10 Lessons Learned from New York VCsOctober 20, 2016 by Lesya Pishchevskaya 292SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedinlast_img read more

Facebook Google Apple and Amazon will answer questions from regulators during a

first_imgThe Fed Has Concerns About Facebook’s LibraFed Chairman Jerome Powell explains why.ShareVideo Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 1:05Loaded: 15.04%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time –:- Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PauseMuteCurrent Time 0:10/Duration 0:15Loaded: 0%0:10Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:05 Playback Rate1xFullscreenAmid calls for big tech to be regulated—and even broken up—Facebook, Google, Apple, and Amazon will face questions from lawmakers at several hearings on Tuesday that could serve as a flashpoint for how regulators deal with big tech in the future.”These are the early stage discussions focused on understanding the underlying issues to solve the right problems,” says Jason Kint, CEO of Digital Content Next, a trade group that represents media organizations.On Tuesday at 2 p.m. ET, the four tech giants will send representatives to answer questions in front of the House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee. Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI), the leader of the panel, has pledged to review the alleged anti-competitive practices of the tech giants and “how consolidation is hurting entrepreneurs.”In terms of antitrust, Kint thinks the hearing will show Congress taking a step away from the tech companies. “Look at the long, documented history of Facebook making decisions that benefit the company over consumers,” he says. “Despite growing distrust, and in light of that, can we envision giving them that sort of role over the future?”While the four tech giants will testify together, Kint says he expects they’ll be quick to point out their differences and perhaps some will put distance between themselves and Facebook.”There is a lot of momentum in antitrust around the platforms’ use of data privacy,” Kint says. “Apple has a pro-consumer viewpoint that is different than Facebook and Google, for instance.”In addition, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing called “Google and Censorship Through Search Engines” on Tuesday afternoon. Karan Bhatia, Google’s vice president for government affairs and public policy, will answer questions in the hearing, which will be presided over by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who has been a vocal critic about perceived conservative censorship. Kint will testify during this hearing, along with a panel of other experts, including Andy Parker, the father of slain journalist Alison Parker, and Dennis Prager, founder of the conservative site PragerU.In two hearings this week, Facebook’s plan to release its Libra cryptocurrency will be scrutinized on Capitol Hill. David Marcus, head of Facebook’s cryptocurrency initiative, will testify before the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday at 10 a.m., and the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday at 10 a.m.”Our first goal is to create utility and adoption, enabling people around the world—especially the unbanked and underbanked—to take part in the financial ecosystem,” he plans to tell lawmakers, according to prepared remarks released on Monday.Marcus’s testimony comes as politicians and government officials have expressed scrutiny about Facebook’s plan to release its Calibra digital wallet and Libra cryptocurrency in 2020.In his remarks, Marcus says Facebook won’t release Libra until all regulatory concerns are “fully addressed.” He added that it will be registered with the Department of the Treasury and won’t compete with sovereign currencies.Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) is working on a proposal called the “Keep Big Tech Out of Finance Act,” which would prohibit large internet companies from becoming a financial institution or offering cryptocurrencies.Last week, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell told the House Financial Services Committee he’s concerned about Libra.”While the project’s sponsors hold out the possibility of public benefits, including improved financial access for consumers, Libra raises many serious concerns regarding privacy, money laundering, consumer protection and financial stability,” Powell says. “These are concerns that should be thoroughly and publicly addressed before proceeding.”Ultimately, this week will be about taking another step toward ensuring big tech is accountable, learns from its mistakes of the past, and moves forward with an approach that respects the rights of consumers, Kint says.”These companies are the most powerful, most valuable and most innovative companies on the planet,” he says. “They do have unbelievable amounts of resources and engineering talent and ideas and employee capital to do things better.”More must-read stories from Fortune:—The fall and rise of VR: The struggle to make virtual reality get real—A new A.I. is running the table against poker pros. Is business strategy next?—Video game addiction: These are the warning signs to look out for—Apple has new MacBooks. Here’s what you need to know—Listen to our new audio briefing, Fortune 500 DailyCatch up with Data Sheet, Fortune’s daily digest on the business of tech.Catch up with Data Sheet, Fortune’s daily digest on the business of tech.You May LikeEntertainmentSass as a Strategy: How Netflix’s Twitter Became Just as Entertaining as Its Shows and MoviesHealthFormer GE CEO Jeff Immelt: To Combat Costs, CEOs Should Run Health Care Like a BusinessHealthFor Edie Falco, an ‘Attitude of Gratitude’ After Surviving Breast CancerLeadershipGhosn Back, Tesla Drop, Boeing Report: CEO Daily for April 4, 2019AutosElon Musk’s Plan to Boost Tesla Sales Is Dealt a SetbackMPWJoe Biden, Netflix Pregnancy Lawsuit, Lesley McSpadden: Broadsheet April 4last_img read more

Who Owns UserCreated Content

first_imgUser Agreements Set User Content RulesLots of companies allow  user-generated content to be posted on their sites in order to create a rich site experience. Once posted, who owns that content? According to Curtis Smolar, a partner at Ropers Majeski Kohn & Bentley, the broad answer is that the site and the creator own the content.The real question, according to Smolar is, “What terms of use does the service (site) require?” Molar cites the example of an artist painting a mural on the wall of an abandoned plant. Who owns the mural? Is it the plant owner or the artist? Can the plant owner re-purpose the artist’s copyrighted work?“United States copyright law states that any idea fixed in a tangible means of expression is protected.” writes Smolar, “United States copyright law states that any idea fixed in a tangible means of expression is protected.  So, it would follow that if comments are posted on a Website’s comments section, that the online user’s comments are copyright protected by the law.  In the wall analogy, if you own the content, and a Website ‘reprints it’ (and someone else views it), the Website has violated your protected work.”This is not true for online user content. The general rule is that a content creator in the Web world, owns the material and grants a license to the Website for further use. Therefore, while the artist owns the mural, the plant owns the wall. By posting content, users have agreed that the Website can use it any way it chooses.This ‘license’ is usually granted to the site owner with a user agreement. By clicking that they agree with the user agreement, users give a company, permission to use, reproduce and alter submissions. The company does not have to pay you money for any use of the content. One hand washes the other in that, as the ‘artist’ you get to use the company website or ‘wall’ to display your ‘art.’ AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

Ween Off Lean Why Going Big Works Well Too

first_imgThe beauty of startup culture is that ideas come first.One idea in particular has been the subject of some controversy. Eric Ries, entrepreneur and pioneer of the lean startup movement, has led a revolution in terms of how startups are being launched. Ries’ brainchild has been met with some criticism as of late. And now, a counterculture seems poised to form around the notion that, for startups, bigger may be better. Phil Fernandez, CEO of Marketo, explains why he has taken a stance (somewhat) against the learn startup.The main argument Fernandez pushes is that, before the entire lean cycle can even be fully executed, a company may have already failed. In many businesses’ rush to iterate and push out a minimum viable product, they fail to create a scalable business model. Backtracking can do little at this point. To Fernandez, it’s a design flaw of lean.So, the idea that Fernandez introduces in the end is fairly simple: hurry to get big. By taking this approach instead of Ries’, a startup may be giving itself better odds at survival. For more why going big can work, too, read the full article by Fernandez.Photo by: Kevin DinkelAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

5 Ways to Make Customers Your Best Salespeople

first_imgYour customers are your most valuable asset in more ways than one. Not only do they create revenue by making purchases, but they can also help you with leadership development, marketing and sales. Every customer you connect with has the potential to be a brand ambassador, and ultimately a source of sales revenue. Even better, they do this work without demanding a paycheck or health benefits.As with any other asset, your goal should be to maximize your returns. Here are five ways to convert customers into a powerful sales force.Create a Referral ProgramOne simple way to get customers to promote your products is to provide them with an incentive for doing so. That’s why so many companies have created referral programs. Through these, they provide valued customers with discounts, rewards points, gifts, cash and even special access for referring friends and family members.In many cases, customers are provided with a personalized link or referral code that they can pass along to others. When a referral visits the company website through that link, or keys in the referral code, credit is given to the referring customer. This shouldn’t be confused with affiliate programs where compensation only comes after the sale is made.Referral programs are an excellent option because they are simple and straightforward. Customers know how they’ll be rewarded for providing referrals to their friends and family members. This is a great way to get new business from customers with large networks of people who share similar interests.Use customer testimonials to build trustIt’s a big accomplishment when you draw a potential customer to your website or one of your landing pages. Still, you know your work isn’t done yet. You’ve still got to get them to take the final step of answering your call to action, and make a purchase. This is where you’ve really got to convince them to keep moving forward.Of course, your primary focus should be on sharing the benefits of your product, but trust is important as well. Remember that when customers make a purchase, you’re asking them to hand over personal and financial data, and to trust you to handle that information with utmost care and discretion. To complete sales, you’ve got to inspire confidence and trust.Customer testimonials are one way to do that. Now more than ever consumers are more interested in what their peers have to say about products and services than brands. 84% trust people more than brands. By soliciting and posting customer testimonials, you can broadcast that trust to potential buyers.Identify Influencers and Brand AmbassadorsCustomer reviews and testimonials are valuable. When these come from influencers and brand ambassadors, they are absolutely priceless. There’s a reason that YouTube and other channels are full of product review content. Interested customers are inspired to make purchases by the information they receive from the people that are influential to them.You know those posts you see on Instagram that are tagged #Spon, #Sponsored, #Ad, #Paid, etc.? Those are all examples of influencer posts promoting products and services. These along with the aforementioned YouTube videos are usually the direct result of companies sending influencers and ambassadors free products so that they can talk about them through their own social media channels.If you connect with the right influencers, this can lead to a real boost in your sales figures. The key is identifying the influencers that can truly connect your brand to networks of interested customers. It’s not enough for them to have extensive networks. In fact, you may get more value from an influencer with a smaller, but very active, audience with a proven interest in your niche.Get Customers to Share User Generated ContentUser-generated content is any brand-relevant content that is created by your followers or customers. Examples of user-generated content include:Customer reviewsTips and advice generated by ‘power users’Customer storiesPictures and videos of customers using your products and servicesUser-generated content can be published and shared on your website, social media pages, third party websites and the customers’ owned social media. Wikis, YouTube channels and podcasts can act as other sources of user-generated content.As a brand, you can use this content to create engagement among your audience members. You can encourage your customers to share content by providing them with a platform for thoughts, stories, and images on your website and social media. You can even find ways to provide customers with incentives for doing just that.Simplify And Encourage SharingEven the most satisfied customer is only going to go so far in advocating for your products and services. It’s your role to encourage them and to make the process as easy as possible. You can do this by taking every opportunity you can to encourage customers to review your products, share your content and otherwise let people know about your products and services.Take friction out of social sharing, and you’ll see more customers doing your outreach for you. Do this by:Placing social share buttons in conspicuous placesAsking for likes and shares in your social media postsLinking to your social media pages on your websiteSend order confirmation emails with links to review sitesUse tools like Click to Tweet to encourage customers to share your content without much effort at allSolicit customer testimonials from highly satisfied customersReach out to customers directly on product review sitesYou can even create your own comments/reviews section directly on your own site. There, you can collect positive feedback from customers to share.Final ThoughtsIf you keep your customers happy, make it easy for them to share their thoughts about your products, and provide the right incentives, they will happily become your secondary sales force. Try using a combination of the five methods above to get the most out of your ability to get your customers excited about your products and services.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis28last_img read more

3 Steps to Choosing Your Next Product Build

first_imgMost of the time, the hardest problem isn’t building your product, it’s figuring out what product to build. You typically don’t have a lack of ideas; there are only so many hours in the day, so you need to make smart choices about where you invest your time. My secret sauce for picking the “right” product to work on is to only choose products that allow me to deliver a unique solution to a pronounced and widespread problem.I came to this approach after realizing how many people make the mistake of choosing what to build based on their personal passions. While this might make sense in a do-what-you-love/love-what-you-do sense, it’s not always the right move for the market. Every once in a great while, you’ll hear a story about a founder who followed their passion and managed to tap into the zeitgeist. But those are usually outlier cases, not the norm.Step 1: A Better Way to Decide What to BuildA more reliable approach to choosing what to build is to identify where your audience is experiencing acute pain and then go as deeply as possible into the nature and causes of that pain so you can build a product that solves the problem in an innovative way. Find the pain. Solve the pain. And do it in a way that gives you the opportunity to make your go-to-market messaging about how your specific approach to solving the problem is new, different and better than the status quo.Here are a few examples of how companies I have founded follow this method:Crazy Egg helped pioneer the category of heat maps for websites, giving site owners visual analytics that provide an easy-to-understand overview of visitor behavior on a web page. The problem it solved: too many bar graphs and pie charts getting in the way of a site owner’s ability to quickly and easily understand what’s working on their sites, and what isn’t. The solution solved a major pain point and did it in an innovative way that literally drove an entire analysis category forward.KISSmetrics, which started out as a funnel analytics tool, was always much more than that because of the pains we discovered and how we uniquely solved them. We developed this product to address a number of different problems with analytics including the inability to tie data back to individuals, the 24-hour lag time that used to exist between tracking data and being able to view it in an interface, and the constant need to debug the data before you could actually do anything with it. To overcome all these issues, we built a really good API and what we call a debugger, which is a real-time view of the analytics—something that didn’t exist in that form until we built it. This innovation allowed engineers and non-engineers to see exactly what data was getting into the system when they were integrating analytics. The other really useful thing we did was to build a left-to-right funnel—something that may seem pretty mainstream today, but which, when we first invented it, was a completely different way of looking at the steps people are taking on your website or with your business. This new approach made it really easy to segment your data by anything you wanted, because it looks like a table and was really intuitive.FYI, my latest company, helps people find their documents in three clicks or less—solving the universal and super annoying problem of having to search through multiple locations for way too long before you can put your hands on the document you’re looking for. Our solution connects to all the cloud services people use—Asana, Slack, Dropbox, G Suite, Windows, etc.—to deliver a centralized way to organize and search all your documents in one place.Each of these products arose out of a desire to provide relief around a common pain point. It sounds simple, but it can be a challenge to find a problem that’s actually worth solving. It’s also important to acknowledge that you probably won’t get it right on the first try. We worked through at least ten or eleven failed products before we found Crazy Egg. The good news is that, if you’re paying attention, your learning curve will level out as you continue to build new products. These days, it only takes a couple of tries before my team lands on the right solution.One of the often overlooked keys to success is doing your research. This applies to the phase before you’ve landed on a product and the phase leading up to building that product. Interviews, surveys, and general market research are a powerful way to hone in your audience’s number one challenge. And then once you’ve decided what you’re going to work on, become an expert on that problem. After building FYI, I can go on for days about documents and all the different kinds of issues companies have around productivity, document organization, search and workflow. We collected more than 2,000 survey responses and did more than 200 customer interviews to make sure we were getting all the details from potential customers.Step 2: The 5-day MVPHaving all those details and such a deep understanding of the users and the challenges they face is a critical step in a successful product launch. It’s only from that strong foundation of immersion into the world of the problem you’re trying to solve that you can build an effective solution.Once you have that foundation, I’ve found that an efficient way to get to the next step is what we call a “five-day MVP.” For FYI, as an example, we built an initial version of the product in 3 days, shipped it internally, iterated on it for 2 more days, and then shipped it to a group of approximately 20 people. At that point, the entire interface consisted of a search box and the ability for the user to connect three cloud accounts—G Suite, Dropbox, and Box. That was it, but we learned so much. And from there, we were able to iterate based on the feedback to get to where FYI is today.Step 3: Customer-centric AssessmentAlong the way, as your product’s user base grows, you’ll want to identify a few indicators that can tell you how things are going and whether what you are doing is hitting the mark or missing by a mile. Personally, I like to focus on the sentiment of the customer and look at that from both a qualitative and a quantitative perspective.On the qualitative side, I keep an eye on things like whether people are excited about the product—are they telling their friends about it, tweeting about it, emailing us? On the quantitative side, we look at the standard KPIs—retention and engagement—paying special attention to where people are falling off and which ones are most engaged.From there, we can triangulate to determine what’s working and what’s not. And even if we feel like—overall—the product isn’t hitting the mark, we still take the time to look for pockets where it’s working.You never know what you’ll learn and how your product will evolve until you get it in front of people.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis1last_img read more

Google Faces New Internal Protest Over Forced Arbitration

first_img Michael Kan Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Add to Queue Reporter –shares Image credit: via PC Mag Google 3 min read A group of Google workers wants the right to sue the company over workplace harassment and discrimination claims. Next Article January 15, 2019 Guest Writer Google Faces New Internal Protest Over Forced Arbitration A group of Google employees is demanding the right to sue the tech giant out in the open when it comes to all workplace discrimination and harassment claims.On Monday, the group called on Google and the tech industry to end the practice of forced arbitration, which requires employees to deal with workplace complaints behind closed doors and not in court. “Ending forced arbitration is the gateway change needed to transparently address inequity in the workplace,” the Googlers for Ending Forced Arbitration wrote in their blog post.The demand is the latest employee-led activist effort to confront Google. In November, over 20,000 staffers at the tech giant participated in a company-wide walkout to protest Google’s handling of workplace sexual misconduct claims.The walkout came after The New York Times reported that Google had privately given lucrative exit packages to two former company executives, despite credible claims of sexual misconduct against them.In response to the employee-led protest, the company said it would end forced arbitration, but only for individual sexual harassment and sexual assault complaints. “We recognize that we have not always gotten everything right in the past and we are sincerely sorry for that. It’s clear we need to make some changes,” company CEO Sundar Pichai wrote at the time.But Google’s pledge may have been in name only. On Monday, the group of protesting Google employees said the tech giant is still sending out job offer letters with the company’s old arbitration policy. No mention is made that the prospective hire has the option to sue Google in court over sexual harassment claims.No court is going to invalidate Google’s forced arbitration provisions based on a press release. It makes for nice headlines but until Google actually amends its employment agreements, current and future workers could still be forced into arbitration for sexual harassment claims. https://t.co/ofrBQoAwhK— O’Dwyer & Bernstien (@ODwyerLaw) January 14, 2019″The change yielded a win in the headlines, but provided no meaningful gains for worker equity … nor any actual change in employee contracts or future offer letters,” the group said. In addition, the company’s old arbitration policy also remains in force for workplace discrimination cases related to race, religion, and sexual orientation.So far, Google hasn’t responded to the claims. But on Tuesday, the protesting employees plan to launch a social media campaign that’ll share interviews from tech workers who’ve been forced to deal with the effects of forced arbitration policies. This story originally appeared on PCMag Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Register Now »last_img read more

Canada Takes Next Step Toward National Marijuana Legalization

first_img –shares Next Article Even as voters in more U.S. states approved legalized recreational marijuana this November – and 28 states have legalized medical marijuana – the federal government still lists marijuana as an illegal drug.However, just north of the border, Canadian leaders have started moving in the opposite direction.Justin Trudeau, the prime minister of Canada and leader of the Liberal Party, created a committee in the summer of 2016 to look into the issues surrounding making marijuana legal for recreational use across the entire country.The panel recently submitted its findings. They call for a tightly controlled, heavily regulated recreational market that aims to provide adults who want to use cannabis a safe and legal way to buy it, while at the same time cracking down on the marijuana “black market.”Related: How to Retain More Customers Without Spending a DimeThe panel, chaired by former Canadian Deputy Primate Minister Anne McLellan, wrote in its report that if put into action their recommendations will  “strike a balance between implementing appropriate restrictions, in order to minimize the harms associated with cannabis use, and providing adults access to a regulated supply of cannabis while reducing the scope and scale of the illicit market and its social harms.”Trudeau has said he expects to file legislation based on the panel’s recommendations in the spring of 2017.Different approach in Canada.In the U.S., some in the marijuana industry have voiced concerns about President-elect Donald Trump’s position on legalized marijuana, particularly since his nominee for attorney general, Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, have been a vocal opponent of legalized marijuana.In Canada, the Liberal Party has taken a clear stance on making recreational marijuana legal. On the party’s website, it states: “We will legalize, regulate, and restrict access to marijuana.”“Canada’s current system of marijuana prohibition does not work,” they further state. “It does not prevent young people from using marijuana and too many Canadians end up with criminal records for possessing small amounts of the drug.”Related: The Next Entrepreneurial Gold RushThe party hopes that legalizing recreational marijuana will reduce the amount available to young people and also keep the profits “out of the hands of criminals.”Getting there, according to the panel, will take a great deal of work on the part of the national government.Key recommendations.The lengthy panel report focuses on taking a public health approach to regulating legalized marijuana. In doing so, the panel considered health issues such as chronic use of marijuana, mixing it with abuse of other substances (such as alcohol) and young people having too much access to cannabis. They also took into consideration the dangers of interaction with the illicit marijuana market.Some of the key recommendations include.Regulating advertising so it will not appeal to young people, or associate marijuana with use of other substances such as tobacco or alcoholSet the legal age limit at 18Requiring packaging that clearly states what the product contains, including strain of cannabis and amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the ingredient in marijuana that causes the “high”Conducting sales only through specialty stores licensed by the governmentHomeowners could have up to four cannabis plants, and individuals could carry up to 30 grams in publicCreating a “seed-to-sale” tracking system for recreational cannabis productionExtending the restrictions on public smoking of tobacco products in Canada to include cannabisStrengthening penalties for selling cannabis outside the legal systemRelated: Entrepreneur.com Staffers Pick Their Favorite Solutions of 2016While the panel concludes that creating a government-run infrastructure for cannabis sales will take time and effort, they conclude that “Canada is well-positioned to undertake the complex task of legalizing and regulating cannabis carefully and safely.” Cannabis While the US federal government remains stubbornly opposed to legalizing marijuana, our neighbor to the north is increasingly interested in cannabis commerce and moving away from pot prosecutions. Add to Queue Image credit: Harrison Ha | Getty Images 4 min read Guest Writer Canada Takes Next Step Toward National Marijuana Legalization Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. dispensaries.com Free Green Entrepreneur App December 29, 2016 Easy Search. Quality Finds. Your partner and digital portal for the cannabis community. Keep up with the latest trends and news in the cannabis industry with our free articles and videos, plus subscribe to the digital edition of Green Entrepreneur magazine. Download Our iOS Applast_img read more

What Does the Star Wars Universe Smell Like Head to Disney

first_img August 7, 2017 –shares Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Register Now » Angela Moscaritolo Add to Queue Next Article At Disney, a ‘truly transformative experience’ includes all the senses, so get ready. Disneycenter_img What Does the ‘Star Wars’ Universe Smell Like? Head to Disney. Reporter This story originally appeared on PCMag 2 min read Image credit: via PC Mag Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. A new virtual reality experience headed to Disney later this year will give you the opportunity to step into a galaxy “far, far away” in a more immersive way than ever before.Dubbed Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire, the new experience is being developed by Lucasfilm entertainment division ILMxLAB and VR experience creator The Void. It’s slated to open to the public this holiday season at Downtown Disney at Disneyland Resort in California and Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.”A truly transformative experience is so much more than what you see with your eyes; it’s what you hear, feel, touch and even smell,” teased Curtis Hickman, co-founder and chief creative officer at The Void. “Guests who step into Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire won’t just see this world, they’ll know that they are part of this amazing story.”That, according to ILMxLAB Executive Vicki Dobbs Beck, means the experience will invoke “all the senses.” In other words, if you’ve ever wondered what the Star Wars universe smells like, you’ll soon find out.According to a news release, visitors will “move freely throughout the untethered, social and multi-sensory Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire experience in a way that allows them to interact and engage with friends, family and Star Wars characters.” Guests will “become active participants in an unfolding Star Wars adventure,” Beck says.last_img read more

As Michigan Awaits Millions in Marijuana Tax Revenue Massachusetts Still Waits

first_img A tales of taxes in both states reveals the frustrations and benefits of legalizing recreational marijuana. 3 min read Free Green Entrepreneur App Will Michigan voters have green on their minds next week at the polls?  Marijuana supporters are hopeful, as they anticipate impressive tax revenue — as high as $520 million over the next five years — for the state if voters approve recreational marijuana sales. In Massachusetts, state officials also have money on their mind — the millions the state is losing each month by delaying the start of adult-use marijuana sales, two years after voters approved it.It’s a tale of two different states with two different priorities — but both aiming for the same goal. Related: What Will Happen if the U.S. Legalizes Pot Like Canada? A Mind-Boggling Economic Boon, That’s What.Michigan awaitsIn Michigan, voters will consider Proposal 1 on the November ballot. If passed, it will legalize recreational marijuana sales statewide.This could be a boon for the state’s economy. The Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, one of the groups backing the legalization effort, recently projected that legalization of adult-use marijuana will bring in $134 million in state taxes in 2023 alone.In total, they estimate marijuana taxes would reach $520 million in the first five years after sales begin. The taxes would come from a 10 percent excise tax on marijuana, according to Ballotpedia.There’s been precedent for these kind of numbers. Other states have seen an enormous influx of cash from marijuana. Washington, which has about two million less people than Michigan, collected about $319 million in marijuana taxes and license fees in 2017, according to the state treasurer’s office. But the excise tax is much higher at 37 percent.Colorado, which also is smaller than Michigan in population, collected about $247 million in marijuana taxes and fees in 2017, the state’s Department of Revenue reported. Colorado has a 15 percent marijuana excise tax and a 10 percent tax on marijuana sales, reported Ballotpedia.According to the ballot proposal, tax revenue in Michigan would be sent to local governments. The money would pay for local government operations, improvements to schools, and road and bridge repair and maintenance.Related: Exclusive: New Report Estimates Over $1 Billion In Cannabis-Derived Taxes For NevadaMassachusetts waitsMeanwhile, in Massachusetts, leaders have grown concerned about not raking in the marijuana tax money they had counted on for the current fiscal tax year.That’s because Massachusetts, which approved legal recreational marijuana in November 2016, still has not launched its program. State officials now believe they are weeks away from the first dispensary being allowed to sell to the public.Massachusetts has been unusually slow to act. In comparison, Nevada had its program launched by July 2017 and California by January 2018. Voters in both of those states also approved adult-use sales in November 2016.What’s the holdup? There have been many, but the latest roadblock has been a slow licensing process for marijuana testing facilities.Sales were expected to start last July. Proponents of the measure said the state is losing about $176,000 a day since then. That’s an issue as state officials had hoped marijuana taxes would help to balance the state budget in 2019.Now they’re hoping to finally bring the earnings just like their beloved Red Sox. Follow dispensaries.com on Instagram to stay up to date on the latest cannabis news. As Michigan Awaits Millions in Marijuana Tax Revenue, Massachusetts Still Waits Guest Writer October 30, 2018 Politics dispensaries.com Easy Search. Quality Finds. Your partner and digital portal for the cannabis community. –shares Next Article Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Download Our iOS App Image credit: Shannon Price | Getty Images Keep up with the latest trends and news in the cannabis industry with our free articles and videos, plus subscribe to the digital edition of Green Entrepreneur magazine. Add to Queuelast_img read more

CocaCola Amatil converts to sustainable sugar in Australia

first_imgCoca-Cola Amatil converts to sustainable sugar in AustraliaPosted By: Jules Scullyon: March 01, 2019In: Beverage, Business, Environment, Industries, Social Responsibility, Social responsibility, Soft drinksPrintEmailCoca-Cola Amatil has switched to 100% sustainably accredited sugar across its non-alcoholic beverage portfolio in Australia.Under contracts running to 2021, Amatil’s sugar purchases are now a mix of Bonsucro and Smartcane Best Management Practice (BMP) certified sugar. Bonsucro and Smartcane BMP are production frameworks which aim to increase on-farm productivity while reducing environmental and social risks.The decision means the company’s sugar is obtained from farms that have decreased herbicide and pesticide use, a chain of responsibility process from production to final use, and increased use of ethanol – rather than fossil fuels – in growing and milling.Alison Watkins, Coca-Cola Amatil managing director, said: “We have responsibilities to the community on resource use and renewal, and we’ve also heard customer feedback in favour of greater sustainability in the products we sell.“The switch to sustainably accredited sugar is a step forward for our overall operations, and also in meeting that customer demand.”Last year, Coca-Cola Amatil announced plans to reduce the sugar content in its non-alcoholic portfolio of sales by 20% by 2025, as part of an industry-wide pledge announced by the Australian Beverages Council.In its full-year results published last month, Amatil said Coca-Cola volume sales in Australia grew in the second half of 2018, driven by Coca-Cola No Sugar and the ongoing consumer trend towards low- and no-sugar choices.Coca-Cola No Sugar volume sales led overall Coca-Cola trademark volumes into positive territory for the half. “We’ve heard the message on consumer wellbeing, and we’re delivering with low- and no-sugar options for all our major beverage brands,” said Watkins.In a move to boost its sustainability efforts, Coca-Cola Amatil earlier this year announced it will no longer distribute plastic drinking straws or stirrers in Australia and will instead stock fully recyclable and biodegradable Forest Stewardship Council-accredited paper straws.Share with your network: Tags: AustraliaCoca-Cola Amatilsugarsustainabilitylast_img read more

Did We Learn Nothing From the DotCom Bust

first_img Add to Queue January 15, 2018 Columnist at PCMag.com Lessons Did We Learn Nothing From the Dot-Com Bust? A lot of ‘tech’ these days would fit perfectly into the pre-bust dot-com era-and that should have us all very, very nervous. This story originally appeared on PCMag Next Article Image credit: via PC Magcenter_img Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. 4 min read Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business This promises to be a year of confusion in the tech world. Less than two weeks in, and we’re already mired in this chip flaw madness, while the continued rise in Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies is concerning. What’s a sure thing? Driverless cars? Quantum computing? Nobody knows.I could go down the list, but I’m feeling a little déjà vu. In the late ’90s, those who questioned a stupid idea or trend were immediately told they did not “get it.” We were in a “new economy” where everything had changed, after all.What didn’t change was an economic collapse when reality set in. Having dog food shipped to your house by Pets.com was not viable as a business model. It folded.How is that different from what Amazon is doing today with Amazon Prime? You join Amazon Prime for $99 a year and get all sorts of free benefits including video streaming of movies and free two-day shipping of everything imaginable. Only creative bookkeeping makes it work. Hello 1999. I won’t even bother with the Webvan parallels.Then there is the mania over driverless cars. According to one observer at CES, if you weren’t there with some driverless car technology, you might as well have stood in the corner.Driverless cars will only work in a crime-free, vandal-free world. Don’t kid yourself, these devices have decades to go. It’s not because of the car tech. It’s because computers are still stupid and can easily be fooled when placed in the real world to navigate and interact on their own.Onward to the most dubious of all technologies: quantum computing. Nobody can ever explain it in a way that doesn’t make you draw back your head and flash a sour look on your face. I have listened to the theoretical angles about this so-called technology and, afterwards, felt I was just in a game of three-card monte.I spent a long time talking to one of the most knowledgeable reporters who has covered the technology from the outset and he still doesn’t know what to make of it and whether the inventors are sincere, deluded or just full of it. It’s impossible to tell. Yet, Intel and others are jumping on board “just in case.”Perhaps the most amazing hoax ever perpetrated since Piltdown man is Bitcoin, all the other cryptocurrencies and the blockchain hoo-hah.We were all fools not to buy it when one bitcoin was 50 cents. That much I will agree on. But would we be holding on forever? Who knows? For years I have equated Bitcoin with the Beanie Babies phenomenon; its collapse foretold the dot-com collapse. At least a Beanie Baby had an intrinsic worth, that of a small plaything for kids. Bitcoin has removed anything intrinsic. All it has is perceived value. You cannot play with a Bitcoin, you cannot melt them down, you cannot use them as a toy or art. They are magic dust.But mention this to a Bitcoin fanatic, and I’m told I “don’t get it.” Hello, 1999.I’ve heard there is a Bitcoin vending machine someplace, but I cannot imagine what a hassle it would be to use. It’s nuts. But through the mechanism of mass hysteria, they are worth a fortune and going higher in value.How long can this go on? If the scene has locked on to the late 1990’s groove of insanity, it’s possible that we are in an analog of 1998 and can maybe make it through the year without a collapse. But looking at the start of the year, I doubt it. Smoke, meet mirror. John C. Dvorak –shares Register Now »last_img read more

Sidel unveils its allinone Super Combi packaging solution

first_imgSidel unveils its all-in-one Super Combi packaging solutionPosted By: News Deskon: September 11, 2017In: Beverage, Industries, Labelling, Manufacturing, PackagingPrintEmailPackaging manufacturer Sidel has launched its Super Combi model, an all-in-one system for water and carbonated soft drinks production that delivers ready-to-sell products.Unveiled this week at Drinktec, the machine is billed as the ‘next generation’ solution and has five process steps: preform feeder, blower, labeller, filler/capper and cap feeder into an all-in-one system. Sidel has focused on creating a safer and more hygienic model, with ‘positive handling of the bottles’ by the neck throughout the whole system, ‘enabling higher overall’ bottle quality.In a bid to ensure more sustainable production, the Super Combi has been designed to minimise the use of resources. Sidel said consumption of electrical power is reduced by up to 45%, preform-heating time is lowered by up to 15% and, with the option of AirEco2 double air-recovery, a 35% reduction in the use of compressed air is also achieved.In a statement , Sidel said: “The integration of innovative new technologies minimises changeovers on the Sidel Super Combi, which can be guided for improved speed and efficiency to keep the line running smoothly with minimal downtime.“The simplified settings of the preform feeder, the quick release blowing moulds and a reliable high-speed reel auto-splicer, along with the sector based vacuum drum of the labeller, are just some of the ways that Sidel Super Combi makes changeovers easier and faster than ever.”With different machine configurations possible based on the output required, the new labelling process is efficient, said Sidel, with the integrated labeller being able to carry out different labelling processes, including the application of PSL (pressure sensitive labels) and roll-fed labels.By utilising integrated equipment intelligence and innovative technologies, the new Super Combi also aims to provide continuous production-optimisation and enhanced performance for producers of PET bottled water and soft drinks.Share with your network: Tags: Drinktec 2017manufacturingpackagingSidellast_img read more

Nestlé begins work on 308m Russia infant formula facility

first_imgNestlé begins work on $30.8m Russia infant formula facilityPosted By: News Deskon: October 12, 2017In: Food, Industries, Manufacturing, NutritionPrintEmailNestlé will invest CHF 30 million ($30.8 million) to build a new infant formula plant in Russia to offer more variety to consumers.The facility will be part of the existing Vologda site, where Nestlé has operated for 14 years. The move sees Nestlé strengthen its position in the Russian infant formula market, as well as support export to neighbouring countries.The investment is in line with Nestlé’s strategy to increasingly focus capital spending on the high-growth food and beverage categories of coffee, infant nutrition and bottled water.In total, Nestlé owns eight factories in Russia and it is estimated that the new infant formula site will be fully operational by 2019.Nestlé Russia CEO Martial Rolland said: “This new factory will allow us to strengthen our leading position in the Russian infant formula market by developing our ability to supply both the domestic and the export markets.”Nestlé baby food factory manager Eddy Dauphin added that the new site will allow the company to meet consumer demand in the region.“Today we are happy to announce that we start construction of the infant formula site, which will allow us to double the capacity of our local production from 2019 onwards,” he said. In the last 20 years, Nestlé Russia has invested about $2 billion into the development of local production. The company claims that about 70% of raw materials and 90% of packaging used in its products are of local origin.Share with your network: Tags: infant formulaNestléRussialast_img read more

Nomad Foods completes the acquisition of Goodfellas Pizza

first_imgNomad Foods completes the acquisition of Goodfella’s PizzaPosted By: News Deskon: April 23, 2018In: Business, Food, Industries, Mergers & AcquisitionsPrintEmailNomad Foods has completed the €225 million acquisition of Green Isle Foods, (Goodfella’s Pizza) from Boparan Holdings subsidiary 2 Sisters Food Group.Goodfella’s Pizza manufactures and sells and sells frozen pizzas for the UK and Irish markets, and its Goodfella’s brand is one of the market leaders in the UK’s frozen pizza category.This acquisition strengthens Nomad’s position in the UK’s frozen food sector, as the company’s portfolio of frozen food brands already includes the Birds Eye, Findus and Iglo brands.As well as the Goodfella’s brand, Nomad Foods will acquire the San Marco brand and two frozen pizza manufacturing facilities, which the company claims will “provide a foundation for future expansion in the category.”Nomad Foods’ CEO Stefan Descheemaeker said in May 2017 that Nomad Foods had a €600 million acquisitions fund and that the company would seek to expand its portfolio of businesses.Descheemaeker said: “Goodfella’s represents an important step in expanding our share of the frozen food category in Western Europe.The transaction is expected to be immediately accretive to earnings and creates a complementary avenue of growth to our base business, which continues to gain market share.“We are excited to welcome Goodfella’s to the Nomad Foods organization and look forward to driving shareholder value by combining our scale and commercial capabilities with their deep knowledge and expertise of the attractive frozen pizza category.”Share with your network: Tags: frozen foodGoodfella’sNomad FoodspizzaUKlast_img read more

Danones Aptamil brand unveils new infant formulas

first_imgDanone’s Aptamil brand unveils new infant formulasPosted By: News Deskon: June 13, 2018In: Beverage, Dairy, Health, Industries, New products, NutritionPrintEmailDanone’s Aptamil brand will release several new infant formula products which utilise a new ‘next-generation’ formula.Six new products will be made available to UK consumers, covering the entirety of the ‘infant journey stage’ from birth to 3 years old through First Infant Milk, Follow On Milk and Growing Up Milk powders.The new formula used for the Aptamil Follow On Milk and Growing Up Milks with Pronutra – Advance product line uses a ‘unique process’ to blend a mix of ingredients such as vitamin D in order to support the immune health of growing infants.Aptamil has also overhauled the packaging of the majority of its product range – excluding the brand’s tailored nutrition range – to make the products easily identifiable on shelves.Marie-Astrid Gosse, marketing manager at Aptamil said: “At Aptamil, we are devoted to bringing mums and their little ones the latest innovations our ground-breaking science and research has to offer.“We work with passionate experts to continuously develop our products and we’re extremely proud and excited about this launch.“This is the biggest change we have made in over a decade and we truly believe our investment in maintaining quality means our range is one of the best in market.“Not only do we have powder formulations with a unique blend of ingredients but the new-look packaging across the range now further reflects the premium nature of our brand, giving retailers a visual point of sale and helping consumers understand which product is most suitable for their needs.”The new product range will be available from UK retailers nationwide from the end of June.Share with your network: Tags: AptamilDanoneinfant formulaUKlast_img read more

The a2 Milk Company agrees distribution deal with Walmart

first_imgThe a2 Milk Company agrees distribution deal with WalmartPosted By: Martin Whiteon: August 23, 2018In: Beverage, Business, Dairy, Health, Industries, RetailPrintEmailThe a2 Milk Company has expanded its presence in the US market by signing a distribution agreement with Walmart, meaning a2 Milk products are now available in Walmart stores throughout New York, Pennsylvania, Florida, Texas, Maryland, and Washington DC.Australia-based a2 Milk offers a range of alternative milk products which it claims are ‘easier to digest’ than conventional milk products, as they do not include the A1 beta-casein protein, which can cause of digestive discomfort.The new deal follows on from the company’s US expansion efforts earlier this year, which made a2 Milk products available from 1,400 stores in the US Northeast, and consumers can now find a2 Milk products at more than 6,000 retail outlets in the US.Rising consumer demand from consumers with dairy intolerances has drastically accelerated the growth of the brand, and increased global sales led to the company recording a 68% increase in annual revenue in its latest financial results.Blake Waltrip, US CEO of The a2 Milk Company said: “Achieving distribution with such a powerful and respected retailer like Walmart further validates the a2 Milk brand proposition in the US and marks a critical point in our company’s drive to bring consumers back to dairy by providing our products to the roughly 75 million Americans who report dairy intolerance.“The a2 Milk proposition is unique in the dairy industry, and we are looking forward to continuing to spread awareness of the benefits of A1 protein free milk with the first to market brand, a2 Milk.”The a2 Milk Company global managing director and CEO Jayne Hrdlicka added: “We are thrilled that millions more Americans will now have the opportunity to bring a2 Milk into their homes for their families.“Our products offer a natural solution to those people who experience digestive discomfort from dairy and this is the next step of our goal of giving everyone the chance to enjoy the nutritious benefits of real milk.”Share with your network: Tags: a2 MilkDairyUSWalmartlast_img read more

Donald Trump Jr calls his father a Christmas regifter

first_imgDonald Trump news Share on Messenger This article is more than 7 months old Share on Facebook Reuse this content Thu 13 Dec 2018 06.23 EST Last modified on Mon 18 Feb 2019 10.25 EST Share via Email Share on WhatsApp Share on LinkedIn Share on Twitter Pinterest Trump Jr also said he would be spending the Christmas holidays with his family and his girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle at the president’s Mar-a-Lago club in Florida.“It would be a wonderful thing” if he could tweet his father’s holiday dinner commentary, he said. Donald Trump: If it’s good enough for me, it’s good enough for you.Photograph: Oliver Contreras/EPA US president’s son says he once received back a monogrammed item he had given as a presentFollow the latest US politics news Associated Presscenter_img Donald Trump’s eldest son has said the US president is a “regifter” who once gave him the same gift he had presented to his father the year before.Donald Trump Jr said in an interview with the US entertainment programme Extra that because he is his father’s namesake, he “got regifted all the things that were monogrammed for him at times”.He also said he had challenged his father about the issue one Christmas, explaining that he was the one who had given him the monogrammed item he then received back. Share via Email Twitter Support The Guardian Topics This article is more than 7 months old Shares156156 … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Since you’re here… Facebook Share on Pinterest Share on Twitter Donald Trump Jr calls his father a Christmas ‘regifter’ Donald Trump Share on Facebooklast_img read more

John Bolton the man driving the US towards war … any war

first_imgJohn Bolton John Bolton in typically pugnacious mood, inveighing against Iran while US ambassador to the United Nations in 2006. Photograph: Justin Lane/EPA Read more Julian Borger in Washington Is John Bolton the most dangerous man in the world? North Korea Donald Trump’s national security adviser is stoking tensions with North Korea, Iran and Venezuela, in line with decades of taking the most hawkish position on any given issue Share on Twitter Share via Email This man is different from anyone I have met in my life. He doesn’t allow for a dialogue. It’s just brute forceJosé Bustani Topics Pinterest Ben Armbruster Sign up for the US morning briefing Share on WhatsApp John Bolton Last modified on Fri 17 May 2019 14.15 EDT Share via Email Iran Read more … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Bolton ‘played Trump like a Stradivarius’, according to one former aide. Photograph: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images Support The Guardian Venezuela Share on Messenger In the run-up to the Iraq invasion, Bolton was serving as under-secretary for arms control in the state department. He was not making the policy, but he was enforcing it.In one telling episode, he was dispatched to The Hague to get rid of the director general of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, a Brazilian diplomat called José Bustani, who had convinced Libya and Iraq to sign the Chemical Weapons Convention. That would have undermined the case for war with Saddam Hussein, and Washington was furious, insisting Bustani had exceeded his mandate. Bolton arrived in the Netherlands in February 2002 with an ultimatum.“He came to my office and said: ‘You have 24 hours to quit, and this is the instruction from Mr Dick Cheney,’” Bustani recalls. Bustani refused, pointing out he had only recently been elected for a second term with US support. “And then Bolton said: you better think it over, because we know where your kids are.”Bustani’s two sons were working in New York at the time. Bustani was stunned and held his ground, but to no avail. The Bush administration convened a special conference of member states and ultimately forced Bustani out.Bolton has previously denied making the threat about his children.“It was a very unhappy experience,” Bustani said. “This man is different from anyone I have met in my life. He doesn’t allow for a dialogue. You don’t discuss anything with him. It’s just brute force, that’s all.”Bolton’s management style came back to haunt him when he applied for his next job, as US ambassador to the UN, in 2005. The Senate refused to confirm him, and Bush had to bypass Congress altogether, putting him in the post with a temporary appointment that ended in 2006.He spent his years outside government in high-paying jobs at the American Enterprise Institute, the premier conservative intellectual hub in Washington, as a Fox News pundit, and most notably a paid speaker for the cult-like Iranian opposition group, the People’s Mojahedin Organisation (MeK), which was for many years categorised as a terrorist group by the US and EU. Facebook Fri 17 May 2019 11.07 EDT Twitter Share on Facebook Shares11,00811k John Bolton: the man driving the US towards war … any war It is that background that has convinced Tehran that Bolton is implacably set on forcible regime change. If there is to be an off-ramp on the road to war, and a return to dialogue it may require Trump to fire Bolton.Trump has joked with other officials and foreign leaders that Bolton wanted to get him into a war. “I actually temper John, which is pretty amazing,” the president told reporters last Thursday.But there have been reports that the joke may be wearing thin and that Trump is growing concerned about the direction Bolton is leading him.“John played Trump like a Stradivarius,” Groombridge, Bolton’s former aide, said. “John understands and knows the president very well … He knows to keep it very simple.“[But] I think his influence has waned in the last month or so because he was, unfortunately, in my opinion, factually wrong about the strength of opposition in Venezuela. And now you’ve got a number of people squabbling … about what’s going on with respect to Iran.”Groombridge added: “The problem is that we have a president who is so mercurial that you know he could wake up at four in the morning and just randomly tweet: John is gone.” Since you’re here… Twitter Bolton seems to have played a key role in the collapse of the second Trump summit with Kim Jong-un in February, when he appeared to have drafted a maximalist list of demands for all-or-nothing disarmament that was presented to the North Korean dictator in Hanoi. A year of diplomacy ground to a halt, and Kim, who had been expecting a more gradualist approach, has now started goading the US with a return to missile tests.In the standoff in Venezuela, Bolton was again centre stage, making himself the lead US voice for a failed effort at regime change in Venezuela in late April, producing a personal video appeal calling – in vain – on Nicolás Maduro’s top aides to defect. Behind the scenes he has urged a reluctant US Southern Command to come up with ever more aggressive solutions to Maduro’s hold on power.And in the fast-moving escalation of tensions with Iran, it is Bolton who has seized the initiative, spun military deployments in the Gulf that were already in the pipeline as confrontational steps against Tehran, and reportedly irritated some in the Pentagon and intelligence agencies by putting a sensationalist spin on intelligence about Iranian military movements.Bolton is reported to have convened a deeply unusual meeting on Iran on 29 April, not in the White House, but at CIA headquarters. It was an echo of the buildup to the Iraq war, when Dick Cheney, George W Bush’s vice-president, did the same thing.It now appears likely that Iranian military preparations that the intelligence appeared to suggest, may have been contingencies in anticipation of a US attack – not an unrealistic expectation in view of Bolton’s record. In 2015, he savaged Obama’s diplomatic efforts and penned a now infamous commentary titled To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran. In the Obama era, Bolton’s bristling walrus moustache was a near constant presence on television, almost always Fox News, from where he would vent scorn and spleen on the Democratic administration.These days, Bolton looks considerably more cheerful, having reached the peak of the policymaking establishment that had once seemed out of his reach. Trump administration Throughout his career John Bolton has taken Winston Churchill’s maxim that ‘jaw-jaw is better than war-war’ and turned it on its head.Photograph: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images US politics Share on Pinterest The US is now engaged in three major confrontations around the world that have the potential to degrade into war. And in the driving seat on all three fronts is John Bolton, one of the most fervent believers in American military power ever to work in the White House. Donald Trump’s 70-year-old national security adviser has been a fixture in US foreign policy over the past four decades, and has spent that time, whether in or out of government, mostly arguing for the most hawkish position on any issue put in front of him.“He actually believes when America leads, the world is a safer and better place – not just for us but for the world,” said Mark Groombridge, who worked for Bolton for more than 10 years. Pinterest Bolton grew up in a working-class Republican family in Baltimore, and his first political experience was as a volunteer in the doomed 1964 campaign of Barry Goldwater, a staunch conservative from Arizona.Bolton, who saw Goldwater as having been caricatured by the mainstream media, deepened his dislike of liberal eastern elites at Yale University, where he arrived in 1966 on a scholarship. Unlike many of his fellow students, he fiercely supported the war effort in Vietnam, but not to the point of taking part himself. He avoided the draft by joining the Maryland national guard.He put his law degree to use as a counsel in the Reagan administration, and in 2000 Bolton was one of the Republican lawyers flown into Florida to help tilt the deadlocked election in Bush’s favour.In Bush’s state department, Bolton went to work dismantling US diplomatic efforts. He gleefully described taking a “hammer” to the 1994 Agreed Framework deal with North Korea. It was already fraying but it had at least kept Pyongyang’s plutonium production in check for seven years. The Bush team ruled out talks with the rogue regime, but, argued Christopher Hill, a former US lead negotiator, it had no workable alternative.“You would think John Bolton wanted to invade North Korea,” Hill said. “I never saw him put on a helmet, pick up a gun, so I’m not sure what he had in mind with that.”“This is someone who does not have an interactive mind. He has his perspective, his position, and that’s the end of it,” Hill added. profiles Reuse this content US foreign policy Missouri House passes extreme eight-week abortion ban – as it happened Facebook Share on LinkedInlast_img read more

Accessible Adventures in Indiana

first_imgA boardwalk at Indiana Dunes State ParkIndiana Dunes State ParkWith a 25-mile stretch of sand that hugs a body of crystal-blue water on the southern shore of Lake Michigan, the Indiana Dunes State Park is “the closest thing to the ocean that you’ll experience here in the Hoosier State,” Edwards said.But the experience isn’t limited to climbing up sand dunes and splashing around in the waters of Lake Michigan. There are plenty of accessible adventures in store for people with disabilities.The boardwalk on the Great Marsh Trail is an ideal spot for birdwatching while the Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk offers an accessible fishing pier and a paved trail that passes through the dunes.There’s also an accessible paddling launch at Marquette Park, and the Lake View area provides grilling areas, picnic tables and a stunning view of the Chicago skyline. Clifty Falls State ParkAlthough it’s known for its rugged hiking trails, this popular park in Madison, Indiana also includes many accessible trails and an accessible overlook of its titular attraction, which dazzles visitors even from a distance.As the DNR website states: “The park’s waterfalls change moods with the weather and the seasons, and can range from roaring plunges to delicate bridal-veil mists to gleaming frozen titans.” Indiana State FairThis event is coming up soon — August 4-20. The Indiana State Fair offers several services in accordance with ADA standards, including: free assisted listening devices; accessible seating on all levels of the Indiana Farmers Coliseum; accessible parking; service animals; and more.Hearing/visual impaired seating is also available, and ASL interpreters can be requested for performances a minimum of 10 business days prior to the date of the event. For more accessibility information, visit http://www.indianastatefair.com/coliseum/plan-your-visit/adaaccessibility-info/. Holiday World and Splashin’ SafariAlong with its reputation for being one of the most family-friendly theme parks in America, Holiday World in Santa Claus, Indiana boasts a slew of accessible features.First, free parking is available for guests with disabilities. All restaurants and gift shops are wheelchair accessible. The park also has three theaters that accommodate wheelchairs — Santa’s Storytime Theater in the Christmas section, Hoosier Celebration Theater in the Fourth of July section, and the Aqua Stadium in the Halloween section.Accessibility Guide at Holiday WorldA new, unique feature for guests with disabilities or special needs is the Calming Room located inside the First Aid building, where guests can take “a quiet, relaxing break from the park’s sensory stimulation.”Best of all, Holiday World offers an in-depth accessibility guide that was compiled in cooperation with the Easterseals Rehabilitation Center of Evansville, Indiana. Trail to an overlook at McCormick’s Creek State Park“Indiana is becoming more accessible now than ever before,” said Ric Edwards, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Program Director for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR).A wheelchair user since 1970, Edwards has watched closely as the state’s level of accessibility has evolved over the years. His work for the DNR involves keeping people up to date with the efforts implemented to make the state’s parks more accessible to visitors with disabilities.His department’s 2017 Outdoor Recreation Guide details areas of the state’s parks that meet ADA standards.A fishing pier at Atterbury Fish and Wildlife AreaIn terms of accessible spots for summer activities, the guide offers an abundance of riches — paved trails, accessible beaches, boardwalks, paddling launches and so much more.“My personal favorites just depend on what kind of mood I’m in,” Edwards said. “If I’m in the mood to commune with wildlife, then I’ll visit McCormick’s Creek or Turkey Run or Shades State Park, where I can get lost in nature pretty easily. There are more accessible places for summer fun in Indiana than you’d imagine — not just state parks but all sorts of great outdoor spots.”Here are a few of the best places to have accessible adventures this summer, including DNR properties and more! Taylor’s Dream Boundless PlaygroundLocated in Fort Wayne’s Kreager Park, this inclusive playground was built from the imagination of an 11-year-old girl.In 2008, fifth-grader Taylor Reuille conceived the idea for this playground during recess when she noticed a fellow student who wasn’t able to enjoy the slides, swings and monkey bars like the other kids.Taylor’s Dream Boundless Playground“There are thousands of kids with disabilities — most of them are not able to play at a regular playground because their needs are not accommodated. A Boundless Playground™ serves all children so that we can play together,” Reuille said in a statement for Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation.After years of fundraising and fierce determination, Taylor’s dream turned into a reality, opening in the summer of 2011.Indiana’s first Boundless Playground™, Taylor’s Dream features three circular pods of playground equipment connected by accessible ramps. Each activity area accommodates children with physical, developmental, cognitive and sensory disabilities.Although this playground was developed for children, it brings joy to people of all ages. In an article for Accessible Playground, one of the park’s attendees, 50-year-old Sherry Woodman, talked about how Taylor’s Dream allowed her the chance to fully experience a playground for the first time in her life.“I’m a disabled parent, and I couldn’t come when the kids were little and play with them anywhere on a playground because I couldn’t get through with the mulch — you know mulch is really hard for wheelchair tires and stuff,” said Woodman. “Parents with disabilities are going to be able to come here and feel like normal parents and be able to just enjoy their kids. I didn’t leave here till I’d been on every part of the playground — I wanted to do it all.” Fishing pier at Raccoon LakeStart Your Adventure Today!Keep in mind — these are just a few of the many accessible adventures Indiana has to offer. There is plenty more in store for people with disabilities this summer and all year round.Share this…TwitterFacebookPinterestLinkedInEmailPrint RelatedAccessible Paths at 100 AcresJuly 19, 2010In “Accessibility Reviews”Accessible Education in IndianaNovember 17, 2009In “Accessibility Reviews”Accessible Playground to open Memorial Day in Fort WayneMay 17, 2011In “Conferences and Events”last_img read more

HG Insights Partners with Forrester to Expand Worldwide Technology Adoption Coverage

first_imgForrester Uses Technographics from HG Insights to Give Customers a More Strategic Way to Allocate Sales and Marketing ResourcesHG Insights, the global leader in technology intelligence, announced a partnership agreement with Forrester’s Business Technographics Service. The combined offering leverages technographics from HG Insights to give Forrester’s global customers the ability to see technology adoption trends in more than 45 different markets worldwide. With these combined insights, sales and marketing teams can further refine strategic decisions about which markets to enter or expand, and determine the right level of resources to allocate to sales territories, sales enablement, and demand generation initiatives.Continuously updated technographic intelligence from HG Insights also provides Forrester clients with the ability to adjust their go-to-market plans throughout the year with new technology adoption information. This gives marketing teams the flexibility to reallocate their budgets to support more optimal sales territories, and arms sales organizations with the information they need to modify their plans in order to take advantage of new opportunities.Marketing Technology News: SetSail Introduces Machine Learning-Powered Incentives to Enhance Sales Behavior and Accelerate Performance“Forrester’s primary objective for our Business Technographics Service is to help our B2B clients target the right markets so they can be more efficient in their resource allocation and ultimately acquire more customers,” said Tyler McDaniel, Vice President Product – Buyer Experience Analytics at Forrester. “The depth of technographics coverage from HG Insights, the quality of the insights, and the frequency with which they are updated enhances our ability to provide this guidance to our customers.”Marketing Technology News: Stingray Selects Triton Digital for Digital Audio Monetization“Forrester is a well respected, premier research and advisory firm that challenges the thinking of its clients and helps them lead change in their organizations,” said Don Wynns, Vice President of OEM and Channel Partnerships at HG Insights. “We’re honored that Forrester has affirmed the quality of our technographics by partnering with HG Insights to make this intelligence available to their B2B sales and marketing customers.”Marketing Technology News: PubNub Closes $23 Million Funding Round to Accelerate Global Adoption of its Data Stream Network HG Insights Partners with Forrester to Expand Worldwide Technology Adoption Coverage MTS Staff WriterApril 16, 2019, 5:32 pmApril 15, 2019 Business Technographics ServiceforresterHG InsightsMarketing TechnologyNewstechnology intelligenceTyler McDaniel Previous ArticleGamification: A Game-Changer for Inspiring Your Sales TeamsNext ArticleQuanticMind Offers SEM Marketers Powerful New Automated Bidding Capabilitieslast_img read more

Data Over Half of Consumers Will Pay More to Buy from a

first_img Yes Marketing Finds Most People Rank Value/Quality of Products as Their Top Driver for Loyalty to Retailers Over half of consumers say they will pay more to buy from a retailer they’re loyal to, indicating a significant opportunity for brands to drive long-term revenue from their loyal customer base, according to a new study by Yes Marketing.In “The Retail Shopper’s Journey to Loyalty” report, Yes Marketing surveyed over 1,000 retail shoppers to identify their priorities and motivations as they move along the customer journey, from initial interaction with a brand to brand loyalty. The report revealed that 41% of consumers rank product quality/value of products as the top reason they’re loyal to a retailer while 35% rank price highest.The findings indicate that elements like free shipping perform well in driving purchases with new customers but are less influential for long-term loyalty. In fact, only 3% of shoppers ranked free or expedited shipping as the top driver of loyalty. On the other hand, 40% of consumers ranked it as the top convenience factor they consider before making a purchase with a new retailer.Marketing Technology News: How to Solve Latin America’s E-Commerce ProblemMarketers can leverage these findings to prioritize the benefits they communicate to customers at different points in their journey.“The seamless and personalized consumer experience, which is a critical component of loyalty, has become table stakes,” said Jim Sturm, president of Yes Marketing. “It takes so much more to deliver on the different expectations customers have for retailers at each stage of their journey. Smart brands must differentiate between effective acquisition tactics and effective loyalty strategies. This distinction can help brands increase lifetime customer value and create truly successful lifecycle programs.”In terms of rewards, the report found that cash is king with 39% of consumers reporting that cash incentives make them feel most rewarded for their loyalty, followed by early access to products (23%) and exclusive promotions (18%).Marketing Technology News: Nielsen Launches Global Measurement For YouTube Mobile App“With the continuous evolution of the retail sector, retailers must build strong customer relationships to create lifetime loyalty and drive revenue,” said Michael Iaccarino, CEO and chairman of Infogroup, parent company of Yes Marketing. “Given the significant impact customer loyalty has on business results, retailers need to find a service and technology partner who can enhance and execute their marketing strategies to adapt to changing consumer expectations.”Marketing Technology News: Credorax Launches Smart 3D Secure Solution in Partnership With Netcetera free shipping performloyal customer baseMarketing TechnologyMichael IaccarinoNewsRetail ShopperYes Marketing Previous ArticleFinding the Whale and Other Ways Big Brands Can Learn from Start-UpsNext ArticleSecureAuth Innovates Secure Identity Management with its Intelligent Identity Cloud Service Data: Over Half of Consumers Will Pay More to Buy from a Retailer They’re Loyal to PRNewswireJune 5, 2019, 2:02 pmJune 5, 2019 last_img read more

Mobiquity Technologies Releases AdTribute™ RealTime Ad Effectiveness Attribution

first_imgMobiquity Technologies Inc., a leading technology provider in next generation programmatic advertising released AdTribute as an additional measurement feature of the Advangelists ad tech operating system. a leading technology provider in next generation programmatic advertising today released AdTribute as an additional measurement feature of the Advangelists ad tech operating system. Advangelists’ AdTribute provides marketers the ability to identify in-store, brick-n-mortar visitation (footfall) as a result of exposure to digital advertising.Integrating digital footfall reporting, directly into the Advangelists platform data features results is actionable real-time measurement of physical campaign performance that eliminates delays and enables an advertiser to make smarter, faster spending decisions. In comparison, third party digital footfall solutions require several weeks of in-flight media followed by 2-3 weeks of data analysis by an outside vendor to generate a report on in-store campaign success. Advertisers could not make actionable changes or campaign optimizations until a later date.AdTribute uses a control-exposed methodology, identifying advertising impression views and subsequent lift in physical brick-n-mortar visitation as a result of campaign exposure. Additional measures include time between ad exposure and subsequent visitation to the store. The product further identifies when statistical significance is achieved, allowing marketers to confidently optimize their media campaigns.Marketing Technology News: Shuttlerock Expands European Presence to ParisWhen combined with web site visitation, Advangelists’ AdTribute feature provides a holistic view of an advertiser’s ability to influence both digital and physical store visitation in one platform. This solution has immediate applications in a wide range of end use advertising segments, including brick-and-mortar advertisers, restaurants, travel destinations, event and entertainment marketers, and flash sales.“With AdTribute, the Advangelists platform is able to match anonymous audience profiles to transactional or place-visit data sets to determine purchase or traffic lift and report back to our clients in real time,” explained Mr. Dean Julia, CEO of Mobiquity Technologies.Marketing Technology News: Informatica Unveils AI-Powered Product Innovations and Strengthens Industry Partnerships at Informatica World 2019“What’s unique about AdTribute is its ability to allow advertisers to begin viewing in-store traffic attributed to message exposure as the campaign launches and makes the data available to identify successful campaigns/audiences or messages for optimization mid-campaign,” continued Mr. Julia. “We are absolutely thrilled to be able to offer this feature free as part of Advangelists and recognize this as a distinct advantage over traditional DSP platforms working with location data providers.”Marketing Technology News: Tata Elxsi is a Certified Widevine Partner, Selected as the System Integrator for Google Widevine CAS solutions ad tech operating systemAdTributeMarketing TechnologyMobiquity TechnologiesNewsprogrammatic advertising Previous ArticleSelligent Marketing Cloud to Showcase Collaboration with Genesys at Xperience19Next ArticleMarTech Interview with Inbal Lavi, CEO at Webpals Group Mobiquity Technologies Releases AdTribute™ Real-Time Ad Effectiveness Attribution PRNewswireJune 11, 2019, 2:29 pmJune 11, 2019 last_img read more

Ajith Impresses in Nerkonda Paarvai Trailer Sunaina Roshan Denies Being Bipolar

first_img Ajith KumarAjith Kumar in Pink remakeamitabh bachchanAmitabh Bachchan Bihar First Published: June 12, 2019, 7:47 PM IST Tamil star Ajith Kumar’s much anticipated 59th film’s trailer has been released by the makers on YouTube. Titled Nerkonda Paarvai, the H Vinoth directorial is the official remake of Amitabh Bachchan’s courtroom drama Pink, which released in 2016 and had Tappsee Pannu, Kirti Kulhari and Andrea Tariang in pivotal roles. Read: Bat in Hand, Deepika Padukone Shows Ranveer Singh Who’s the Boss in Real and Reel Life A few days back it was reported that Hrithik Roshan’s sister Sunaina has been kept under medical observation following her deteriorating health and condition. A report in TimesofIndia.com said that Sunaina suffers from bipolar disorder and is under observation of the medical staff. The daughter of Rakesh Roshan has now dismissed the reports, saying that she wasn’t in the hospital, rather, she was partying with friends.Read: Katrina Kaif Channels Her Inner Black Panther, Goes ‘Wakanda Forever’ on Dance FloorAlso, Amitabh Bachchan wrote in his blog that he had payed off the loans of 2100 farmers in Bihar through One Time Settlement (OTS) plan. The 76-year-old actor also wrote that there is “another promise to be completed”.Read: Priyanka Chopra Wraps Up the Shoot for The Sky is Pink, Shares Heartfelt Post on InstagramScroll down for more news from the world of entertainment and lifestyle.In Nerkonda Paarvai, Ajith will portray the role of an aged lawyer, the part played by Amitabh Bachchan in Pink. National award winning actress Vidya Balan is also making her Tamil debut with the courtroom drama. However, she does not appear in the two-minute-long trailer that released on Wednesday.Read: Nerkonda Paarvai Trailer Presents Ajith in His Most Intense Avatar, Promises a Thrilling RideAlso read: Vidya Balan is in Bali on a Holiday and Her Pictures are BreathtakingAlso read: #MeVijay: Here’s What Vijay Fans are Sharing on TwitterAlso read: Kaala Director Pa Ranjith Booked for Controversial Speech About Chola Emperor Rajaraja CholanAlso read: As an Actor, You Always Have to Be on Your Toes and Think About What People Want, Says DhanushSunaina Roshan, sister of Hrithik Roshan, said that she doesn’t suffer from bipolar disorder and wasn’t under treatment for it. Reports had earlier claimed that she was under medical observation following her worsening condition. She said that being angry and short-tempered does not make one a patient of bipolar disorder, which causes shifts in mood and energy.Read: Hrithik Roshan’s Sister Sunaina Says She is in a ‘Living Hell’ Because of Family IssuesAmitabh Bachchan has cleared the loans of over two thousand farmers from Bihar. “A promise made done… the farmers from Bihar that had outstanding loans, picked 2100 of them and paid off their amount with a OTS (One Time Settlement) with the Bank called some of them over to Janak and personally gave it to them at the hands of Shweta and Abhishek,” Amitabh wrote on his blog.Read: Amitabh Bachchan Pays Off Outstanding Loans of 2100 Farmers from BiharAlso read: Randeep Hooda Joins Relief Efforts in Drought-Hit Areas of MaharashtraAlso read: Mohit Raina Hopes More People from His Home State Jammu & Kashmir Find a Livelihood in BollywoodEarning Rs 8.30 crore on its seventh day, the total collection of Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif starrer Bharat stands at Rs 167.60 crore. Notably, the actor has three films in the Rs 300 crore club and two in the Rs 200 crore club.Read: Bharat Box Office Day 7: Salman Khan Film Earns Rs 167 CroreAlso read: MS Dhoni, Shikhar Dhawan Watch Bharat in England, Salman Khan Thanks Team India Also read: Eid Clash Averted, Akshay’s Sooryavanshi will not Release with Salman’s InshallahAlso read: Salman Khan Adds a New Twist to Nach Baliye Season 9, Brings Ex-Couples Under One RoofA Bombay Times report had claimed that despite denying it several times, Kushal Tandon and Ridhima Pandit were indeed dating and called it quits after nine months of togetherness. However, on June 10, Kushal took to Instagram to release a statement to clear the air about their ‘non-existing’ relationship.Read: Kushal Tandon and Ridhima Pandit Deny Relationship Rumors, Say They are Just Good FriendsAlso read: Esha Deol-Bharat Takhtani Share Daughter Radhya’s Excitement of Welcoming Sister Miraya Also read: Prince Harry Gifted Meghan Markle an Eternity Ring, Here’s What It MeansAlso read: Katy Perry Calls it a Truce With Taylor Swift, Offers Her CookiesCheck back tomorrow for more news from the world of films and fashion.Follow @News18Movies for more last_img read more

Kriti Sanon Soaks Up the Sun in Maldives With Her Tribe See

first_imgBollywood actress Kriti Sanon knows how to go for a vacay. The actress keeps going on holidays often, with her friends and family. After a Goa holiday, Kriti is off to another vacation. The actress is having the time of her life in Maldives before starting the promotions of Arjun Patiala. The Bareilly Ki Barfi actress flew to down to Maldives on Sunday with her friends. Sharing a picture with her close buddies, Kriti wrote, “Vibing with my tribe!!#Maldives” In the picture, Kriti looks effortlessly chic as she is wearing a black halter-neck top and denim. Not just posts, Kriti also took to Instagram stories to share her vacation fun with her fans. Posting a video of her cycling in Maldives amid lush green surroundings, Kriti captioned it, “finally! #Maldives” The actress also shared a series of pictures with her friends during her ongoing trip to Maldives. While the days are filled with greenery all around, Kriti shared a picture of the night view of the Maldives sky, which she posted with the caption, “I’m such a “look at the moon” kinda person… And when its a full moon night, i can just stare and stare for hours! what a beautiful night this is…!” Kriti can be seen looking at the moon, dressed in a yellow dress, staring at the moon in the cloud-filled sky. On the work front, Kriti is currently filming Panipat opposite, Arjun Kapoor. She was last seen in the blockbuster film Luka Chuppi with Kartik Aaryan. She will also be seen in Housefull 4 and Arjun Patiala.Follow @News18Movies for more arjun kapoorArjun PatialaBareilly Ki BarfiHousefull 4 First Published: June 18, 2019, 11:01 AM ISTlast_img read more

23 Feared Dead After Tiware Dam Breached in Maharashtras Ratnagiri 11 Bodies

first_img maharashtramonsoonmumbai rainsRatnagiri First Published: July 3, 2019, 4:44 PM IST Mumbai: At least 23 nwere killed and several missing after a dam in Maharashtra’s coastal Konkan region breached following incessant rains, leading to a flood-like situation in downstream villages, officials said on Wednesday.The Tiware dam in Chiplun taluka of Ratnagiri district has a storage capacity of 20 lakh cubic metre. It developed a breach late on Tuesday night after heavy rains, a district official said. A local police official said 11 bodies have been recovered so far, adding that the total toll would be 23. The dam breach caused a flood-like situation in seven downstream villages, with as many as 12 houses being swept away.When contacted, Additional Superintendent of Police, Ratnagiri, Vishal Gaikwad said a search operation has been launched by the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and state police personnel and the villagers moved to safety.”Police have moved the villagers to safer places. The situation is under control now,” he said.Another police officer said rescue operations were hampered initially due to darkness and sudden influx of water.However, local public representatives alleged that the government neglected their pleas for maintenance of the dam. They claimed to have written to the administration about the cracks in the walls of the dam, but no action was taken.Relatives of the victims said they had asked district administration to repair the dam as they had spotted cracks in November last year.There was an issue over the jurisdiction of which tehsil Tiware dam falls in, as Chiplun and Dapoli tehsil offices had ignored the application of the villagers, said a family member of one of the dead.”It is only because of their negligence that we have seen this day,” he said. “My parents, wife and child of one and a half year is missing,” he added.”My brother, who had gone to bring his vehicle did not return,” he said.Maharashtra Water Resources Minister Girish Mahajan said villagers in the area had complained of cracks in the dam.”This dam was built 14 years ago. The state government will find out at which level there was negligence and necessary action will be taken accordingly,” he said.Homes of the villagers washed away will be constructed at safe places, he said. A compensation of Rs 4 lakh will be given to the kin of each of the deceased person, he added.Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has ordered an inquiry into the incident. “The reason for the breach will be probed and action would be taken against the guilty expeditiously,” he said.Fadnavis contacted the district administration and took stock of the relief and rescue operations, an official statement said.Some local residents claimed that Water Resources department official recently visited the dam, which was filled to its capacity, after complaints that the walls had developed cracks. (With inputs from PTI)last_img read more

Couple Arrested in West Bengal for Suspected Honour Killing of Teenage Daughter

first_img gangahonour killingMaldaWest Bengal First Published: July 7, 2019, 8:33 AM IST Malda: A couple were arrested Saturday for allegedly killing their 16-year-old daughter and dumping her body in the Ganga river as they were against her relationship with a youth, police said.The incident, a suspected case of honour killing, occurred on Friday in Mahendratola village under the jurisdiction of Bhutni police station, they said. Acting on a tip-off, the police went to their residence and arrested Dhiren Mondal and his wife Sumati Mondal, a police officer said.The girl was having an affair with a youth, Achintya Mondal, a resident of adjoining village, the police officer said, adding, the girl’s parents were against the relationship.The couple, after killing the class 9 student, put her body in a gunny bag and threw it in the Ganga, he said.A suo motu case was lodged under various sections of the IPC, Superintendent of Police (Malda district) Alok Rajoria said.Efforts were on to recover the body from the river, the SP said, adding that divers were engaged to find the body. last_img read more

Allahabad Court Allows Minor Rape Survivor to Terminate Pregnancy of 21 Weeks

first_img LucknowminorpregnancyRape First Published: July 20, 2019, 7:20 AM IST | Edited by: Ahona Sengupta Lucknow: Considering the trauma that the minor rape survivor may face if she has to give birth to an unborn child, the Allahabad High Court Friday permitted her to medically terminate her pregnancy, even if it crossed 20 weeks, the permissible limit given in Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971.The Lucknow bench of the court asked her to get herself admitted to KGMU on the day itself. Meanwhile, the court also asked a panel of doctors to preserve the residue of the embryo so that it may be available for scientific investigation, if so needed.A bench of justice D K Upadhyay and justice Alok Mathur passed the order on the writ petition moved by the father of the minor rape survivor.It was pleaded in the petition that the petitioner girl was raped and then she became pregnant by 21 weeks.An FIR has been lodged in the matter against the accused who is of father’s age of the survivor.The petitioner pleaded that under the MTP Act, since pregnancy of 21 weeks cannot be terminated and as such, it is only the high court which could pass the appropriate direction to permit the survivor to get rid of the unwanted unborn child.Taking up the matter, the court on July 17 had directed the KGMU to constitute a panel of four doctors to explore the situation as to whether the termination can be allowed in the present case looking to the physical and mental condition of the survivor during pregnancy and after she has to give birth to the child.KGMU counsel Abhinav N Trivedi presented the report in the court on Thursday.At this, the court requested senior counsel J N Mathur and Bulbul Godial to assist it as amicus-curie (friend to the court).The two counsel argued at length on Friday and suggested to the bench that in the present matter, it would be just if the termination was allowed.The court also directed for preservation of tissues of the embryo after its termination so that it can be available during investigation if so required. last_img read more

This incredible VR system doesnt require a headset

first_imgIf you’ve ever gone to a high-end arcade, there’s a decent chance you’ve played within a ‘game pod’ — that is, an enclosed booth with a semi-spherical screen that surrounds the player’s vision. These are often used for things like fighter jet games, mech battles, and similar, but they could also be used as an immersive way to watch video. While those game pods are usually low-resolution, this new technology is quite the opposite. A new type of virtual reality experience doesn’t require users to wear a VR headset. The system was created by researchers in Japan who replaced the headset with a large semi-spherical display, one that is coupled with a mechanical chair that physically moves the viewer in sync with the imagery. The technology has been demonstrated with a new ‘8K:VR Ride’ video that is something like a theme park ride. As the ride’s name suggests, the technology utilizes an 8K super-high-definition 4K display, which itself is inside of a theater where it measures 17ft across and about 11ft in height. Joining it is a seat connected to machinery that moves the viewers into the air, tips them forward and back, and slants them at angles to match whatever they’re watching.In the case of this ride, viewers appear to be shot into the air quickly, where they then fly over a city, at one point zooming downward at the landscape rapidly. The seat moves in sync with these visual movements, tipping the viewers forward or back to add to the realistic sensations. Because the screen fully engulfs the viewers’ vision, it is easy to become immersed in the environment.The system was developed by Wonder Vision alongside NHK Enterprises, NHK Media Technology, and RecoChoku Labs. The technology will be demonstrated this upcoming October at the Digital Content Expo 2017 in Japan, though it was already showcased at SXSW this year. Plans for the technology aren’t clear, but it is easy to see how it could be utilized by theaters and theme parks, among others.SOURCE: Phys.orgImage via The Japan Timeslast_img read more

Galaxy Note 8 eight things to love about it

first_imgThe Galaxy Note 8 is here at long last and it was everything we heard it would be and then some. There is quite a bit of fuss being made over its $1,000 price tag, at least before the iPhone 8 hits that price point as well next month. That said, there might be some things going for Samsung’s latest phablet that could make that four-digit price worth its salt. Here are eight of them. The S PenAside from the dual cameras, which we’ll get to later, the S Pen is really the only reason you’ll even consider shelling out $1,000 for a smartphone. Naturally, this is also where Samsung has devoted much, though not all, of its attention. If you’ve experienced the Galaxy Note 7 first hand, you’ll be familiar with many of the features you’ll meet in the Galaxy Note 8, albeit with some added perks. For example, it has the same 4,096 levels of pressure, but now matches the color of the phone it comes with. Translation has leveled up to process whole sentences and there’s a new Live Message feature that turns your scribbles into animated shorts. And that’s on top of the general productivity and creativity that a built-in stylus offers.All in all, the S Pen makes a significant improvement over the Galaxy Note 5 even if it’s only an incremental step forward from the Galaxy Note 7. We don’t speak of that phone anymore, anyway.IP68 even without the S PenAnother example of an incremental improvement is waterproofing. The Galaxy Note 7 was already IP68 rated and its S Pen was similarly waterproof. The problem was that the phone alone wasn’t completely protected without the stylus tucked inside. Samsung has finally fixed that seemingly ridiculous limitation which, in truth, is a bit harder to pull off. It’s hard to keep the water out if you intentionally leave a gaping hole.So the Galaxy Note 8 is now IP68 water proof, even without the S Pen inside. More than just bragging rights, this means that users can have more confidence and peace of mind to use the Galaxy Note 8, S Pen and all, in whatever condition they find themselves in. Inspiration sometime comes at the most unexpected moments and places, and your Galaxy Note 8 will always be ready to capture it.Screen Off MemoProductivity gurus often advise against using phones for jotting down ideas or information quickly because of the time it takes for you to take out your phone, unlock it, launch the right app, and begin typing. The improved Screen Off Memo flies in the face of such conventional wisdom.You basically have the digital equivalent of a 100-page notepad at your fingertips with the Galaxy Note 8, completely editable and reusable. It takes the same amount of time to start scribbling on the screen as taking out a notepad and pulling out a pen. It might actually be faster since you don’t have to flip to the next blank page. And unlike a physical notebook, you can always keep a memo on top. This is a productivity junkie’s must have device.Two apps are better than oneSamsung has been doing split screen multitasking for years now but, thanks to Android 7.0 Nougat, that features has been brought into the limelight. While stock Android tries to catch up with what Galaxy Note owners have been enjoying for quite a while now, Samsung has added another feature to spice things up: App Pairs.Truth be told, you can survive even without this feature, but productivity is about being efficient and spending less time on mundane tasks. If you find yourself often launching apps only to split them in specific pairs, then App Pairs is going to be a huge timesaver.Large Infinity DisplayIt’s almost too easy to dismiss the Galaxy Note 8’s screen since we’ve seen it before. It is practically a slightly larger and flatter Galaxy S8+ screen. But those two differences, even if subtle, have significant implications for the Galaxy Note 8 beyond its entertainment value.A larger screen means you also have more room to draw and write. That’s the same reason why Samsung made the edge’s curve sharper than that on the Galaxy S8+. The curve drops further towards the edge, which not only leaves more room but also helps prevent the S Pen from sliding over the edge too easily.OIS on both lensesSamsung is admittedly late to the dual camera party but it arrived with guns blazing. Putting optical image stabilization on both telephoto and wide-angle cameras, while keeping the entire structure as compacts as it can be, is no small feat. And yet it is also one of the most desired feature among smartphones with high quality dual cameras. Even better, the OIS works for both stills and videos. No users no longer have to make an upfront decision, which could take time and cause stress, which camera to use or to worry that their video will turn out to be rather shaky.Telephoto *and* wide-angle simultaneouslyPart of not having to make users choose when they just want to capture the moment is not having to decide which of the two cameras to use in the first place. Sometimes you want to capture the whole surrounding but also want to focus on a specific subject. Sometimes you also want to change your mind. For once in a lifetime moment, you don’t get a second chance. Fortunately, the Galaxy Note 8 save you from having to make that choice in the moment. Sure, it’s limited to the certain camera modes, but, that’s the mode most will use anyway. Plenty of RAMAlthough Samsung has long boasted of its capability of producing RAM modules that could amount to 6 GB in total, it never actually used that much in any of its smartphones. Until now that is. There’s still some debate on whether smartphones really need 6 GB, much less 8 GB, of RAM and, truth be told, mobile platforms should be optimized enough that they should run flawlessly with just 4 GB.But 6 GB of RAM plays a special role in the Galaxy Note 8 specifically. It will be useful for making DeX work as if it were really a desktop computer. DeX gives the illusion of running a regular desktop and users are more likely to tax their smartphones beyond their usual capacities. Having enough wiggle room with 6 GB RAM is definitely a s must and it’s a bit disappointing that the Galaxy S8 or even the Galaxy S8+ didn’t have as much.Wrap-upSamsung is, as always, billing the Galaxy Note 8 as a phone for those who want to do more, be it watching more videos, creating more art, or being more productive. In that respect, the Galaxy Note 8 does seem fit for the job. It’s far from perfect, of course. There are still a few kinks that Samsung needs to iron out, like Bixby and DeX. And the price tag, is going to loom over it like a ghost. But if you are looking for a productivity beast and have the cash to spare, or are able to get a sweet deal, the Galaxy Note 8 is definitely the smartphone to beat.last_img read more

Huawei Maimang 6 official 189 screen 4 cameras

first_imgTruth be told, that camera system might also be called a “dual dual camera” or a “2×2 camera”, because that is practically what it is. As leaked before, there are two cameras on the back, 16 and 2 megapixels, and two on the front, 13 and 2 megapixels. This means that your bokeh needs are covered, whichever side you use.Equally interesting is the Maimang 6’s screen. It is a 5.9-inch 2160×1080 screen, which means an aspect ratio of 18:9 not unlike that of the LG G6 and LG V30. This makes it Huawei’s formal entry into the FullView type of screen. The difference, however, is that there are still very noticeable bezels top and bottom and some at the sides. This is no bezel-less phone.The rest of the Maimang 6’s specs are on par with a 2017 mid-range smartphone. That means Huawei’s custom-made Kirin 659 processor, 4 GB of RAM, and 64 GB of expandable storage. There’s a non-removable 3,340 mAh battery inside. It runs Huawei’s EMUI 5.1 custom experience on top of, sadly, Android 7.0 only.If the Huawei Maimang 6 is indeed the Huawei Mate 10 Lite, we could expect somewhat of the same in the Huawei Mate 10 in two weeks. Except with better specs and perhaps, this time, a nearly bezel-less design. There might also be an embedded fingerprint scanner, though it’s more certain that Huawei will play on the machine learning capabilities that its Kirin 970 processor will give the phone.VIA: Vmall Even before the Huawei Mate 10 could break cover, it seems that its “smaller” sibling has gotten a head start. In China, Huawei officially revealed the Maimang 6. A weird name for English-speaking markets, the smartphone might be known internationally by another name: the Mate 10 Lite. If true, then we are already getting a glimpse of the direction tht Huawei is taking its handsets, which, unsurprisingly, includes an 18:9 “FullView” display and an odd but totally not groundbreaking “quad-camera” system.last_img read more

Xiaomi Mi 9 DxOMark score will give rivals reason to worry

first_imgWith a price tag averaging $500, the Xiaomi Mi 9 can definitely give consumers pause for thought in making their next smartphone purchase. Sadly, all that goodness won’t matter to US buyers as the company continues to withhold its best products from that market. Of course, one of Samsung’s main points for the Galaxy S10 is its cameras but the jury and the reviews are still out on that one. In the meantime, Xiaomi Mi 9 is already here with its whopping 48 megapixel Sony IMX586 camera, a 12 megapixel telephoto camera, and a 16 megapixel super wide angle shooter. And until Samsung proves otherwise, the Mi 9 is already second (or third) best on DxOMark’s list.DxOMark notes how the Mi 9 yields consistently accurate exposure and color balance in still photos while noise levels are kept under control. Even the LED flash produces excellent results in low light situations, one of the best the benchmark testers have seen so far. Granted, they also found the dynamic range to be a bit limited and close-up inspection reveals less fine details compared to the competition, but the still photography performance is pretty much one of the best, it says.Unlike most smartphones, however, it seems that the Mi 9 shines brightest in video recording, in no small part to that Sony sensor. It records in 4K by default and has smooth image stabilization despite the high resolution. DxOMark has given it the highest video score it has so far. Xiaomi’s decision to unveil its latest flagship just hours before Samsung may have been a stroke of genius. It was, in effect, showing off what you can have at half the Galaxy S10’s price. The one thing, however, that Xiaomi’s affordable flagships have not been traditionally known for are their cameras. That might be changing with the Xiaomi Mi 9 now that DxOMark has placed it near the top of the list, besting everyone else except titleholder Huawei.center_img Story TimelineXiaomi Mi 9 features land days before debut, Explorer Edition includedHuawei P30 Pro, Xiaomi Mi 9 show off camera capabilities with full moon shotHow Xiaomi Mi 9 details out-style Galaxy S10 on launch daylast_img read more

Apples new iPad 2019 could keep two beloved features

first_imgApple’s new iPad (2019) won’t follow the iPad Pro in dropping two of the tablet’s most popular features, a new report claims, with the iPad 7th generation said to stick fairly closely to the existing design. Apple left some tablet users frustrated with the two new iPad Pro models in 2018, after dropping Touch ID in favor of Face ID facial recognition. Even more annoying, the iPad Pro (2018) also did away with the 3.5mm headphone jack. Instead, buyers would need to use a Lightning to 3.5mm adapter if they had existing headphones they wanted to listen with. That’s a strategy we’ve seen Apple – and indeed others in the smartphone industry – follow in recent years, but adopting it on the iPad Pro still came as something of a surprise. After all, the tablet has more chassis space, critics pointed out, which would arguably leave more room for an old-school jack. Of course, Apple would rather iPad Pro owners pick up a pair of AirPods, and go entirely wireless. Where that might leave the new iPad (2019), then, has been a topic of some discussion. According to supply chain sources speaking to Japanese rumor site Macotakara, however, the iPad 7th generation won’t go the same way as the latest iPad Pro. In fact, both Touch ID and the 3.5mm headphone socket are tipped to remain. If true, there are a few potential reasons why Apple might have made that decision. On the one hand there’s the cost benefit of not shifting away too far from the existing tablet’s industrial design. If Apple can reuse the same design as the iPad 6th generation, that should make the tooling process less expensive. There’s also arguably more room for push-back from budget users, too, who may be more unwilling to spend money upgrading their headphones to support either Lightning or Bluetooth. For Apple, too, Touch ID sensors are less expensive than the complex TrueDepth camera array which Face ID relies upon. If the iPad 7th generation is to remain as affordable as the current model – which starts at $329 – then the Cupertino company will need to balance its upgrades with relatively low-cost components.Other specifications for the new iPad are unconfirmed. Differing reports have suggested that Apple may either stick with a 9.7-inch display, or alternatively switch to a 10-inch touchscreen – albeit in the same form-factor, using narrower bezels to accommodate the slightly larger panel. At the same time, Apple could well release a new version of its smaller tablet, which has gone neglected for some time. The iPad mini 5 has not been confirmed yet, but Apple may well choose to update it at the same time as it reveals the 2019 iPad, the sources suggest. Story TimelineiPad mini 5, 10-inch iPad coming first half of the yeariOS 12.2 hints at upcoming iPod Touch, iPad modelsiPad mini 5 tipped to cut costs, even with feature boostlast_img read more

Amazon Echo Show 5 is a 90 Alexa smart display with privacy

first_img Disclosure: SlashGear uses affiliate links, If you click on a link in this article and buy something we’ll get a small cut of the sale. Amazon has added a new smart display to its Alexa-powered range, with the Amazon Echo Show 5 arriving at $89.99. The new model has a 5.5-inch touchscreen with a camera above it; in a nod to privacy, there’s both a button to disable the microphone and camera and stop Alexa from listening, and a switch that slides a physical shutter over the camera. The Echo Show 5 slots in-between Amazon’s existing Echo Show and the much smaller Echo Dot, at least in size. The former has a 10-inch display, while the latter has a circular 2.5-inch screen. However it’s also the cheapest smart display that Amazon sells. The screen can be used for the usual Alexa features, like playing videos on Vevo, NBC, and Prime Video, and – in the pipeline, Amazon says – how-to videos from wikiHow. There’s also visual recipes, with navigation controlled by voice and clips to show different stages of preparing a meal. Amazon is pitching the Echo Show 5 as a smart home control hub too. There’s a new dashboard that offers on-screen controls for things like connected lighting, cameras, thermostats, and more. Alternatively, Alexa can control individual devices and groups by voice command. Alexa routines are being added to, too, with more support for customization. There’s the ability to add things like nature or other sleep sounds within nighttime routines, while morning routines can include Alexa Sunrise, the screen gradually brightening before the alarm is due to go off.A new ambient lighting mode can automatically adjust the backlighting according to the room lighting. There’s now a shortcut menu available – accessed by swiping left from the right side of the screen – which has shortcuts and other features. Of course, one of the biggest use-cases is video calling. If you have multiple video-enabled Echo Show devices at home, you can use them as a multi-room intercom system. Alternatively there’s Amazon’s own video calling system along with Skype support. Flick the shutter switch, meanwhile, and the camera is physically covered. center_img Alexa is getting a new privacy talent, too. Amazon is making it more straightforward to delete the audio records it keeps of Alexa interactions. By saying “Alexa, delete everything I said today” users will be able to clear out her cache of saved audio files. Soon, Amazon says, you’ll be able to be more granular, and say things like “Alexa, delete what I just said.”Amazon Echo Show 5 is available to preorder now, priced at $89.99. It’s offered in Charcoal and Sandstone finishes, and there’ll be a magnetic stand which tilts the smart display for $19.99. They’ll ship in in the US, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia from June 26, before arriving in India in July. A Mexico release is planned for shortly after.last_img read more

New Google Pay features make the experience more seamless

first_imgOf course, none of these happen by magic and merchants will have to do the work to make that magic happen. Some of these features are still coming or will still expand but those that are already here available are just waiting for partners to flip the switch and make it happen. You’d think that a mobile payment system would be as simple as managing your credit cards or payment options and letting you easily buy stuff over the Internet or on your phone. While that is indeed the core purpose of platforms like Google Pay, it has long outgrown that basic function. Google is now giving developers and users a quick preview of upcoming Google Pay features that will not only make it easier to buy things but even get on your plane. One of the most nerve-wracking parts of making online purchases is making sure you’re seeing the right price before you finalize the payment. More often than not, the product price isn’t actually what you’ll end up paying, especially when you factor in additional fees like shipping. Google Pay will soon reflect those factors in real-time so users won’t have to go back to the merchant site just to double check.Things can also get complicated when you have more than one payment option, making you double check if you’re actually using the right one. Changes to Google Pay’s purchase button will make that clearer and will even tell you if you need to sign in first.AdChoices广告Google Pay, however, is more than just about payment despite its name. Like a true digital wallet, the platform’s Passes feature lets you manage loyalty cards and even boarding passes. After completing a check-in via Google Assistant, the user’s boarding pass will appear on Google Pay, allowing them to digital keep track of their travels just like their purchases. Google Pay will also automatically pull in loyalty programs from specially marked emails in Gmail so you won’t have to do it manually one by one.last_img read more

Aston Martin can cram an EV powertrain into a classic Aston cars

first_imgUmbilical cords from the power unit feed electrical systems in the car. Power management can be done via a dedicated screen that is fitted discreetly inside the vehicle. The original powertrain can be added back in after conversion if desired. Heritage EV conversions are expected to start in 2019. Aston Martin says that its process to convert classic Aston cars to EV drivetrains is a way to future-proof the classic cars. Aston claims to have the world’s first reversible EV powertrain, but Jag did announce its reversible EV transplant for the E-Type back in August.The conversion to EV power mitigates any future legislation that might restrict the use of classic cars. The conversion is built around what Aston calls a “cassette” EV powertrain. Knowledge to create this cassette powertrain was gleaned during the final phase development of the Rapide E and future planning of the new range of Lagondas vehicles.Components from the Rapide E program will be used to create the EV cassette. The very first ride to get the EV powertrain conversion is an original 1970 DB6 MkII Volante. The EV systems sit on the original engine and gearbox mountings and is enclosed in its own cell.AdChoices广告 Aston Martin is taking a page from the Jaguar playbook and is offering up the ability to put an electric powertrain into a classic Aston Martin. Jaguar did this with its E-Type and made the retrofit process reversible so real E-types could be converted to EV and back if needed. Aston is now doing the same thing.last_img read more

Ferrari says no more engines for Maserati

first_imgWhat was said by Ferrari CEO Louis Camilleri is that “eventually” Ferrari will stop supplying engines to Maserati. The CEO says that is a good thing from its perspective. Camilleri says that the change will allow Ferrari to move a lot of the labor that has been involved with engines to the car side of the business.Maserati has used Ferrari engines in its cars since 2002. The last Ferrari engined Maserati we talked about was the Levanti GTS last summer. The engine sharing came about because Ferrari and Maserati were both under the FCA umbrella at the time. However, Ferrari was spun off from FCA in 2015.After being spun off from FCA Ferrari continued to supply Maserati engines including a 3.8-liter twin turbo V8, 3.0L twin-turbo V6, and a 4.7L naturally aspirated V8. Ferrari will stop providing engines to Maserati in 2021 or 2022. After that date, Ferrari will only supply itself with engines.AdChoices广告What Maserati will do after that remains to be seen. It could reach into the FCA parts bin for engines, which hardly seems to have anything appealing for Maserati or it could develop its own engines. Maserati has already said no to a future powered by batteries, but many will wonder if that might change with Ferrari’s announcement. Maserati has made no official announcement at this time. The only places you could traditionally get a screaming Ferrari engine was to buy a Ferrari or a Maserati. During the recent Ferrari Q1 earnings call the most significant revelation from the event was that Ferrari plans to stop supplying Maserati with engines. The Ferrari engine is a major selling point for the Maserati brand.last_img read more

The Challenges Of Coordinating Care

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. News outlet explore issues related to hospital quality of care, costs and a predicted shift from inpatient to outpatient treatment. Kaiser Health News: Health Care’s ‘Dirty Little Secret’: No One May Be Coordinating CareCoordinated care is touted as the key to better and more cost-effective care, and is being encouraged with financial rewards and penalties under the 2010 federal health care overhaul, as well as by private insurers. But experts say the communication failures that landed [Betsy] Gabay in a rehab center, rather than in surgery, remain disturbingly common” (Rabin, 4/30).Bloomberg: Hiring A Guide To The Medical Bill MazeWhen Annrose Isaac’s twins were born prematurely, she thought her insurer would cover their stay in the neonatal intensive care unit. “The hospital was in our network, but it turned out the physician in the NICU who saw our daughters didn’t participate with our insurer,” says the Westwood (New Jersey)-based financial planner. “All of a sudden we were getting bills for over $30,000” (Braham, 4/29).Modern Healthcare: Healthcare Leaders Expect Big Shift Toward Outpatient CareAs the care delivery models of hospitals and health systems evolve, healthcare executives and materials and practice area managers predict a major shift in admissions from inpatient to outpatient settings. According to Premier healthcare alliance’s spring 2013 Economic Outlook, 69% of the survey participants predict that outpatient volume will rise in 2013, as compared to last year’s volume. And as outpatient admissions are projected to increase, nearly 24% of respondents suggest that inpatient volume this year will drop (Landen, 4/29). The Challenges Of Coordinating Carelast_img read more

New Psychiatric Diagnostic Manual Released

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. New Psychiatric Diagnostic Manual Released Long-awaited update of “the psychiatrist’s bible” has stirred controversy.Marketplace: How Much Is The DSM-5 Worth?Controversy has dogged the new DSM-5, what people like to call “the psychiatrist’s bible,” and it won’t even be officially released until this weekend. Really, the book is a manual clinicians use to diagnose and classify people with mental illness. While it sounds pretty dry, there’s a whole lotta drama around this book. The federal government has questioned its value. … some practitioners are boycotting it and there are charges that it’s not ready for prime time. Before I say anything more about the DSM-5, here are a couple of facts about the DSM IV. It’s 19 years old and it still brings in about $4-5 million a year (Gorestein, 5/17). Reuters: Psychiatrists Unveil Their Long-Awaited Diagnostic ‘Bible’The long-awaited, controversial new edition of the bible of psychiatry can be characterized by many numbers: its 947 pages, its $199 price tag, its more than 300 maladies (from “dependent personality disorder” and “voyeuristic disorder” to “delayed ejaculation,” “kleptomania” and “intermittent explosive disorder”) (Begley, 5/17).Medpage Today: APA Leaders Defend New Diagnostic GuideThe fifth edition of the “psychiatrist’s bible” was officially released here in all its 947-page glory, with its developers offering a spirited rebuttal to their critics. Known as DSM-5, the new version of the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders was launched at a press briefing to kick off the organization’s annual meeting. Most of the changes from the previous edition had already been made public, at least in general outline (Gever, 5/18).McClatchy: Child Mental Health Disorder Rising, Cost Society $247 Billion AnnuallyUp to one in five American youngsters – some 7 million to 12 million by one estimate – experience a mental health disorder each year, according to a new report billed as the first comprehensive look at the mental health status of American children. And the rate is increasing, said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which produced the study, released Thursday (Pugh, 5/16).last_img read more

Employers Get Extra Year To Carry Out Health Law Coverage Mandate

first_imgThe Obama administration’s surprise announcement will delay penalties for one year — until after the mid-term elections — and raises doubts about the implementation process at a crucial moment. Officials said the extension was a response to business requests for more time to navigate complex regulations. Kaiser Health News: Delay In Major Health Law Provision Raises Doubts At Critical Stage Of RolloutThe Obama administration’s decision Tuesday to delay a major component of the Affordable Care Act — the requirement for employers with at least 50 workers to offer health coverage — postpones another feature of the law and hands ammunition to critics who contend it is unworkable. But it could have a relatively small effect on the number of Americans who gain medical insurance next year. The law’s other two major provisions, expanding Medicaid and requiring individuals to obtain coverage or pay a penalty, were projected to add far more people to the ranks of the insured than the employer mandate, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. Those measures are still in effect, although many states have opted not to expand Medicaid next year (Hancock and Appleby, 7/2). Kaiser Health News: Employers To Get An Extra Year To Implement Health Law Requirement On CoverageThe Obama administration Tuesday announced a one-year delay in the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that businesses with 50 or more employees offer coverage to their workers or pay a penalty. Administration officials said the delay was in response to employers’ concerns about the law’s reporting requirements (Carey, 7/2). The New York Times: Crucial Rule Is Delayed A Year for Obama’s Health LawIn a significant setback for President Obama’s signature domestic initiative, the administration on Tuesday abruptly announced a one-year delay, until 2015, in his health care law’s mandate that larger employers provide coverage for their workers or pay penalties. The decision postpones the effective date beyond next year’s midterm elections (Calmes and Pear, 7/2).The Washington Post: White House Delays Health-Care Rule That Businesses Provide Insurance To WorkersThe White House on Tuesday delayed for one year a requirement under the Affordable Care Act that businesses provide health insurance to employees, a fresh setback for President Obama’s landmark health-care overhaul as it enters a critical phase. The provision, commonly known as the employer mandate, calls for businesses with 50 or more workers to provide affordable quality insurance to workers or pay a $2,000 fine per employee. Business groups had objected to the provision, which now will take effect in January 2015 (Goldfarb and Somashekhar, 7/2).The Wall Street Journal: Health Law Penalties DelayedSome companies had bet the law was going to be overturned by the Supreme Court last year, or by a new presidential administration after the 2012 election. After it withstood those legal and political challenges, some firms said there was too little time remaining before the provision was due to kick in. “They realized they were not ready, and we were not ready,” said Neil Trautwein, vice president at the National Retail Federation, an employer trade group. “At the very least, this will give retailers and chain restaurants a chance to breathe.” The decision follows media reports that companies had already cut back on some workers’ hours to avoid exposure to penalties under the new health-care law. Those who work fewer than 30 hours a week aren’t counted as full-time employees, according to the law (Radnofsky, 7/2).Los Angeles Times: Obama To Delay Healthcare Law’s Employer MandateThe one-year delay, announced by the Treasury Department late Tuesday in response to complaints from businesses, marks a major retreat in implementing the 2010 Affordable Care Act. It also underscores the immense pressure the administration is under as it tries to roll out the extremely complex law. By next year, most Americans were supposed to be guaranteed access to health coverage even if they have preexisting conditions (Levey, 7/2).The Associated Press/Washington Post: Obama Administration Delays Central Element Of Health Care Law Until After 2014 ElectionsTuesday’s move — which caught administration allies and adversaries by surprise — sacrificed timely implementation of Obama’s signature legislation but might help Democrats politically by blunting an election-year line of attack Republicans were planning to use. The employer requirements are among the most complex parts of the health care law, designed to expand coverage for uninsured Americans (7/2).Politico: Key Obamacare Rule For Business Delayed For YearThe delay, revealed just as the administration was stepping up efforts to educate the public about enrollment this fall, is at least partial proof of what Republicans have been predicting for months: that the health law is way too complex to be ready to go live in 2014. And that’s a message that may well resonate all through next year – including the 2014 midterm elections (Norman and Haberkorn, 7/3).NPR: U.S. Pushes Businesses’ Health Insurance Deadline To 2015U.S. businesses that had been looking at possible penalties if they don’t provide health insurance to their employees by January are getting an extra year before they must comply with the new law, the White House says. The requirement, part of the health care overhaul known as “Obamacare,” affects all companies that have at least 50 employees (Chappell, 7/2).USA Today: Obama Administration To Delay Part Of Affordable Care ActThe announcement by the Internal Revenue Service comes after numerous complaints from businesses that the requirements were too complicated and difficult to implement in time. … Other key parts of the law, including the health exchanges where individuals can buy insurance, are on schedule. The exchanges will open on Oct. 1, wrote Valerie Jarrett, a senior adviser to President Obama, in a White House blog released Tuesday (Kennedy, 7/2).Politico: 6 Questions About The Obamacare MandateThe bombshell announcement came from the Treasury Department on Tuesday night, catching even the administration’s close allies by surprise: A key part of Obamacare will be postponed for one year. The employer mandate — or as the administration calls it, the shared responsibility rules — was put on hold. Businesses won’t have any new requirements to cover workers, or penalties if they don’t, until 2015. The news came just as the White House was building momentum for its public education campaign and trying to send out signals that everything was on track for enrollment to begin in October. Tuesday’s announcement throws such assurances off course (Haberkorn, Millman and Norman, 7/2).Reuters: U.S. To Delay Key Health-Reform Provision In 2015The move raised questions about the future of other provisions of the law, including the mandate for individuals to obtain health coverage in 2014, and followed widespread complaints from businesses and their lobbyists about reporting requirements for employers with 50 or more full-time workers (Morgan, 7/2).Marketplace: Affordable Care Act Mandate Delayed (Audio)Late this afternoon the Obama administration said it’s gonna delay a key part of the Affordable Care Act — the part that would force companies to provide health insurance coverage for their workers or pay a $2,000 fine. Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Mark Mazur, wrote on the department’s Web site: “We have heard concerns about the complexity of the requirements and the need for more time to implement them effectively. We recognize that the vast majority of businesses that will need to do this reporting already provide health insurance to their workers, and we want to make sure it is easy for others to do so.”McClatchy: Obamacare ‘Employer Mandate’ Delayed Until 2015After months of conferring with fretful employers, the Obama administration announced Tuesday that it will delay enforcement of the Affordable Care Act’s so-called “employer mandate” until 2015. A signature provision of the federal health care overhaul, the contentious measure would have required firms with more than 50 full-time employees to provide affordable health insurance or face a penalty of $2,000 per employee in 2014, when the law was set to be fully implemented (Pugh, 7/2).PBS NewsHour: Key Provision Of Health Reform Law Delayed Until 2015Delaying the law’s “employer responsibility” provision would give employers more time to comply and give the government more time to consider ways to “simplify the new reporting requirements consistent with the law,” according to a blog post from Mark J. Mazur, the assistant secretary for tax policy at the Department of Treasury. Most of the employers impacted by the delay already offer coverage to workers, Mazur said. He added that the announcement did not delay the Oct. 1 scheduled start of the online marketplaces, or exchanges, or the subsidies intended to help individuals with low to middle incomes purchase coverage or the requirement that most individuals purchase coverage or pay a fine (7/2). Fox News: Administration Delays Key ObamaCare Insurance MandateThe Obama administration announced Tuesday that it is delaying a major provision in the health care overhaul, putting off until 2015 a requirement that many employers offer health insurance. The announcement was made late Tuesday by the Treasury Department, at the beginning of the holiday week while Congress was on recess. It comes amid reports that the administration is running into roadblocks as it prepares to implement ObamaCare (7/2). NBC News: Employers Get An Extra Year To Provide Health Insurance (Video)On Tuesday the government said they could have more time to get it done. Saying the goal is to implement reform in “a careful, thoughtful manner”, assistant Treasury secretary Mark Mazur said the administration would spend the extra year finding ways to simplify the process (7/2). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Employers Get Extra Year To Carry Out Health Law Coverage Mandatelast_img read more

Sebelius Faces Withering Criticism On And Off Capitol Hill

first_imgThe Health and Human Services secretary is testifying before the House Energy and Commerce Committee today, as critics question her leadership of the department.The Associated Press/Washington Post: Sebelius Heads To Hill To Defend Health Law And Her Job As Problems Plague Website’s RolloutEager to cast blame, lawmakers are preparing to grill President Barack Obama’s top health official over problems with the rollout of the government’s health care website. A growing number of Republicans in Congress are calling for Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to step down or be fired because of problems consumers are having signing up for insurance coverage on the government’s new website (10/30).The Wall Street Journal: Sebelius To Testify Before House PanelThe testimony by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who has borne the brunt of criticism over the HealthCare.gov website, comes a day after Marilyn Tavenner, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, testified before the House Ways and Means Committee. Ms. Tavenner apologized on Tuesday, saying the site “can and will be fixed” (Schatz and Radnofsky, 10/30).Politico: As Turmoil Swirls, Kathleen Sebelius Takes Hot SeatNot so long ago, Kathleen Sebelius was a popular two-term governor with bipartisan appeal, a possible Democratic vice presidential prospect, a woman whom President Barack Obama could entrust with overhauling the nation’s health insurance system. Even Bob Dole volunteered to introduce her at her confirmation (Dovere and Haberkorn, 10/30).NBC News: How Did Obamacare Site Go So Wrong? 5 Questions Sebelius Must AnswerMarilyn Tavenner, administrator of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, apologized outright on Tuesday at a hearing before the House Ways and Means Committee. Last week, officers of four of the main government contractors that built and are running different parts of the site, said the final testing had been too rushed — and a CMS spokesperson agreed. Now, it’s time for Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to take her turn at hearing today. These questions remain unanswered (Fox, 10/30). Fox News: Sebelius To Face Grilling At Hearing On Glitch-Ridden Obamacare Website RolloutIn written testimony released ahead of Wednesday’s hearing, Sebelius vowed to improve the website and said the consumer experience to date is “not acceptable.” But she defended the law itself and said extensive work and testing is being done. “We are working to ensure consumers’ interaction with HealthCare.gov is a positive one, and that the Affordable Care Act  fully delivers on its promise,” she said in the prepared remarks. Sebelius blamed the website contractors and the “initial wave of interest” for the glitches, but expressed confidence in the experts and specialists working to solve “complex technical issues” (10/30).Bloomberg: Republicans Seeking Obamacare Accountability Tag SebeliusA day after her deputy apologized for the botched Obamacare exchange, U.S. Health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius will have to stare down accusations that she wasn’t forthcoming enough about the potential problems. Republicans said they primarily want to know at a hearing today about the lack of transparency ahead of the rocky Oct. 1 debut of the insurance exchange, which is supposed to let people compare and buy health plans (Wayne, 10/30).The Washington Post: Kathleen Sebelius, Welcome To An Unwelcome Washington Tradition: The Deathwatch.It’s Kathleen Sebelius’s turn now. On the Hill, they’re calling for her resignation and tossing around words like “subpoena.” Pundits are merrily debating her future. (She’s toast! Or is Obama too loyal to fire her so soon?) Her interviews, more closely parsed than usual, seem wobbly. Though never a colorful presence on the political scene, she’s suddenly a late-night TV punch line (Argetsinger, 10/29). Sebelius Faces Withering Criticism On And Off Capitol Hill This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Health Insurer To Stop Covering Uterine Procedure

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Highmark Inc., which sells plans in Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia, will stop covering power morcellation, a technique often used in hysterectomies, after the Food and Drug Administration advised doctors against it because it may spread cancer. The Wall Street Journal: Health Insurer To Stop Covering Uterine ProcedureIn the procedure, a bladed device is used to cut up common uterine masses called fibroids, often in hysterectomies, so the tissue can be removed through tiny incisions in minimally invasive surgery. Highmark is the first insurer known to be halting coverage of power morcellation, and the move is the latest in a series of mounting pressures on use of the tool. … The FDA estimates the instruments were being used in 50,000 hysterectomies a year (Levitz, 8/2).Reuters: U.S. Insurer To Stop Coverage Of Gynecological ProcedureA health insurer with 5.2 million members in three Eastern U.S. states said on Saturday it would stop providing coverage for a procedure called laparoscopic power morcellation that is used in gynecological surgery and may inadvertently spread cancer. Highmark Inc, which has customers in Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia, will stop covering the procedure on Sept. 1, company spokesman Aaron Billger said in an email. It is the first insurer to halt coverage of power morcellation after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration advised doctors in April against it (Walsh, 8/3). Health Insurer To Stop Covering Uterine Procedurelast_img read more

State Highlights La Struggles With State Worker Health Program Costs Aging In

first_imgState Highlights: La. Struggles With State Worker Health Program Costs; Aging In Ky. This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. A selection of health policy stories from Hawaii, Louisiana, Kentucky, New York, New Jersey, Georgia, Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Missouri.The Associated Press: Hawaii Public Hospitals Cut While Hurting For CashPublic hospitals across Hawaii are finding ways to reduce staff and cut services because they don’t have enough money to make ends meet. Executives from the Hawaii Health Systems Corp. told lawmakers Friday that even after layoffs they are facing a $30 million deficit in 2015. One hospital on Maui chose to close its adolescent psychology unit because it couldn’t sustain the appropriate staffing levels to provide the services. It’s also considering cuts to oncology and dialysis services if the situation doesn’t improve (9/20). The Associated Press: Health Insurance Program Still Hemorrhaging CashDespite sweeping changes enacted by Gov. Bobby Jindal’s administration, the [Louisiana] health insurance program for state workers and public school employees will have to use $88 million from its reserve fund to cover its costs this year. The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Office told lawmakers Friday that the Office of Group Benefits will spend an estimated $7.4 million more each month on claims and operating expenses than it will receive in premium payments. A “negative burn rate” continues even after premium hikes, service reductions and higher deductibles are put in place during the current budget year that began July 1, according to Travis McIlwain, an analyst with the fiscal office. To cover its costs, the Office of Group Benefits will continue to deplete a reserve fund that once stood at $500 million three years ago, but that has dropped to $207 million and is expected to shrink to $119 million by the end of this budget year (Deslatte, 9/19). The Associated Press: Kentucky Aiming To Revamp Services For ElderlyKentucky is overhauling its elderly services with the aim of stretching resources and helping aging baby boomers remain independent and live out their final years at home, rather than in an institution. The state has struggled to keep up with demand, forcing many elderly residents to remain on waiting lists for critical programs or enter nursing homes earlier than necessary (9/21). Kaiser Health News: Too Many People Die In Hospital Instead Of Home. Here’s Why.”New York City continues to lag in serious ways with regards to providing patients with the environment that they want at the end of life,” says Dr. David Goodman, who studies end-of-life care at Dartmouth College’s Geisel School of Medicine. The reasons they do this are many, but most experts agree that it has less to do with the unique characteristics and desires of people in New York and New Jersey than the health care system and culture that has evolved here. The result: More people dying in the hospital, often in an intensive care unit on a ventilator or feeding tube; more doctor visits leading to tests, treatments and drug prescriptions; and more money being spent by the government, private insurers and patients themselves (Mogul, 9/22).Georgia Health News: Kaiser Tops Georgia Rankings Once AgainKaiser Permanente of Georgia remains the highest-ranked private health plan in the state for the 10th consecutive year, according to the National Committee for Quality Assurance. The new NCQA ratings put Kaiser at No. 19 among 507 plans nationally. The next highest Georgia insurer was a Humana plan, at 147, and Aetna, at 151 (Miller, 9/19).Minneapolis Star-Tribune: Test Shows How Hospitals Battle To Balance Care, CostResults from an experimental Medicare program launched as part of health care reform efforts show that three Twin Cities health care systems all took good care of their patients, but couldn’t always cut costs at the same time. Park Nicollet, Allina Health and Fairview Health Services all agreed to act as “accountable care organizations” under the Pioneer program — overseeing the care of elderly Medicare patients, and gambling that the hospitals could profit by keeping patients healthy while lowering medical costs below expected levels (Olson, 9/21).Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: Chis Abele’s Budget Would Add Money For Mental Health Care, SheriffThe proposed 2015 budget of Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele calls for no new taxes, but it would give hefty increases to two departments — the Behavioral Health Division and the sheriff’s office. Abele has proposed an estimated $3 million increase for the Behavioral Health Division, which is now run by the new Milwaukee Mental Health Board, an independent, nonelected 13-member board entrusted with overseeing the county’s mental health programs and services (Pabst, 9/21).Charlotte Observer: To Big To Be Home? Changing Medicaid Rules Force Closing Of Greensboro’s Bell HouseIn 1979, 26-year-old Doris Lentz found a home at Bell House. Next month, she’s losing it. The residents and staff she considers family, some of whom have been together for 35 years, must scatter. The dorm-like building that is home to 22 people with cerebral palsy and similar disabilities is closing because of efforts to move people out of institutions. North Carolina says Bell House is too big to qualify for federal money that’s designated to help people live full lives in their community. Lentz, who is 61, says she knows what institutional life is like. When her mother died, the young woman spent more than three years in a nursing home before coming to Bell House (Helms, 9/21).Philadelphia Inquirer: Whistleblower Suit Filed Against Abington MemorialA former billing manager at Abington Memorial Hospital has filed a whistle-blower lawsuit accusing the hospital of Medicare fraud and wrongful termination. According to the suit, Joanne Cleighton, 55, of Roslyn, had been talking to hospital officials for nearly a year about her concerns involving blood samples at the laboratory. In March, the suit says, she was fired on the same day she was scheduled to meet with the hospital’s compliance officer. In a statement, the hospital denied Cleighton’s allegations and said it would vigorously defend the case in court. The suit, filed last month in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, alleges that lab technicians were marking routine blood samples as urgent to keep the samples in-house and get paid for their testing (Parks, 9/19). Philadelphia Inquirer: Waiting To Live: Pa. And N.J. Have One Of The Country’s Longer Lists For TransplantsWhen Donald Johnson checked out of Hahnemann University Hospital on June 27, he and his family thought he was coming home to die. Johnson, 63, a Warminster resident and director of a municipal authority, had end-stage fatty liver disease and his kidneys had failed. He needed two organ transplants and had even considered going to Florida to increase his chances of getting help. He had good reason to be afraid. At the time, he was one of nearly 2,500 patients on liver transplant waiting lists in federal Region 2, which includes Pennsylvania and South Jersey. He was also among nearly 15,000 patients waiting for a kidney in Region 2, which tends to have longer waiting lists than other regions (Scott, 9/21). Philadelphia Inquirer: Community Clinics Say Delayed Payments Threaten Their SurvivalCommunity health center officials say their ability to function is being threatened by delays in resolving a long-running dispute with the state over how the centers should be paid. A federal district judge has ordered the state to change how it calculates Medicaid payments to federally qualified health centers, which serve as primary-care clinics for low-income residents. The centers sued in 2012 over changes that state officials made in how payments are determined, saying they thought the FQHCs were being overpaid. But while the courts have ruled in favor of the clinics, state officials recently asked for more time to respond to the judge’s order. Meanwhile, New Jersey’s 20 FQHCs say the payment changes are costing some facilities more than $1 million per year, making it impossible for them to cover their costs (Kttchenman, 9/19).St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Dental Benefits For Missouri’s Low-Income Adults Still On HoldWith the dust settled on Missouri’s contentious veto session, about 300,000 low-income Missouri adults are still waiting to hear whether their government-funded health plan will cover the costs of dental care. When the Republican-controlled Legislature voted in May to restore dental benefits for most adult Medicaid recipients, it seemed like a slam dunk. Republicans had cut the dental benefits from Medicaid nine years earlier, but this year rallied behind restoring dental coverage as a means to promote cost-effective preventive care and oral health. Democrats, who lamented the earlier cuts, had been advocating to restore the funding for years. But the legislative accord over dental coverage was threatened by a budget dispute with Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat, over tax breaks for certain industries and lower-than-anticipated state revenues (Shaprio and Liss, 9/20). last_img read more

State Highlights Calif Judge To Rule On RightToDie Lawsuit Cleveland Stops Providing

first_img Healthcare advocates in California this year successfully pushed for medical coverage for kids who are in the country illegally. But they say they’re not satisfied. At a news conference Thursday, state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) outlined his efforts to further expand coverage to Californians who entered the country illegally. (Karlamangla, 7/23) A Dubuque mother says a wrinkle in Iowa’s cannabis oil program is forcing her to take her young son out into the parking lot of his care facility for his twice-daily dose of the medicine. Jennifer McFadden jumped through all the hoops to obtain a new state cannabis oil card. The permit is supposed to allow her to possess the oil for treatment of her 12-year-old son, Liam, who has severe epilepsy. To get the card, McFadden found a University of Iowa neurologist willing to sign a state form giving approval of the treatment. She then found a Colorado firm willing to send her the oil. But the agency that runs the facility where Liam lives says it can’t allow the oil into the place. McFadden said the agency, Hills & Dales, noted that even though state law allows her to possess the oil, federal authorities still consider it a strictly controlled marijuana product. (Leys, 7/23) Washington state can force pharmacies to dispense Plan B or other emergency contraceptives, a federal appeals court said Thursday in a long-running lawsuit brought by pharmacists who said they have religious objections to providing the drugs. The unanimous decision Thursday by the three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a 2012 ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Ronald B. Leighton, who had found that the state’s rules violated the religious freedom of pharmacy owners. It was the second time the appeals court reversed Leighton in the case. (Johnson, 7/23) The Associated Press: California Judge To Rule On Right-To-Die Lawsuit The Associated Press: Florida Medicaid Plans Seek Raise From State Amid Losses Private health insurance company Health Net gave the wrong information to nearly 14,000 Medicare customers in Arizona during open enrollment last fall, a miscue that prompted the federal government to fine the health insurer nearly $350,000. (Alltucker, 7/23) WellStar Health System, fresh from abandoning a proposed deal with Emory Healthcare, has now landed a new potential partner. The Marietta-based WellStar is beginning negotiations with Tenet Healthcare to buy Tenet’s five hospitals in Georgia — all in greater metro Atlanta. (Miller, 7/23) The Associated Press: Ruling: Washington Can Require Pharmacies To Dispense Plan B The Associated Press: Coalition To Give Voice To Medical Marijuana Patients In the Los Angeles Police Department manual, the section addressing contact with persons who have a mental illness says the goal is to provide a humane, cooperative, compassionate and effective law enforcement response, reduce the potential for violence, and assess services available to the person involved. That’s easier said than done when an officer encounters a person who’s irrational, disconnected from reality, and threatening himself or someone else — maybe even the officer. (Stephens, 7/23) The costs for basic hip and knee surgeries were staggering, but even more confounding were the wild variations in charges for these common procedures. When analysts at Colorado PERA, the Public Employees Retirement Association, tracked exactly what they and their younger retirees had paid for knee and hip replacement surgeries in 2013, they found stunning variations. (Kerwin McCrimmon, 7/23) Insurers participating in Florida’s new Medicaid managed care program say they’ve lost $542 million through 2014 and want the state to raise their rates. But after losing major federal funding for hospitals, Gov. Rick Scott doesn’t want to use any more state money for the Medicaid program. Scott and the insurers are locked in intense negotiations that could undermine the fledgling program that gives federal funds to private health insurance companies to oversee medical care for poor and disabled people instead of reimbursing doctors and hospitals for each service. (7/23) State Highlights: Calif. Judge To Rule On Right-To-Die Lawsuit; Cleveland Stops Providing Family Benefits For Unmarried Couples Health care stories are reported from California, Ohio, Illinois, Florida, Arizona, Georgia, Washington, Iowa, Colorado, Nebraska and Massachusetts. Arizona Republic: Insurance Company Health Net Fined Nearly $350,000 For Enrollment Miscues Hospital profits have crept up over the past decade, thanks in part to taxpayer support, yet patients continue to struggle to find price and quality information — issues the governor’s healthcare commission vowed to tackle during its meeting in Miami Thursday. “We’ve got to make the costs for procedures available to consumers,” said Carlos Beruff, president of a home building company and chairman of the Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding created by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. “But that needs to be in conjunction with quality.” (Chang, 7/23) More than a dozen groups have formed a statewide coalition to make sure patients can get access to medical marijuana under Illinois’ new pilot program.Organizers have announced the formation of the Cannabis Patient Advocacy Coalition. They say it will seek to remove barriers to care and make sure policymakers hear patients’ personal stories. The coalition will also push for Gov. Bruce Rauner to approve recommendations to add 11 health conditions, including post-traumatic stress disorder, to the state’s medical marijuana program. (7/23) The Chicago Tribune: Federal Judge Orders Rauner To Keep Medicaid Money Flowing In Cook County The Miami Herald: Governor’s Health Care Commission Urges Price, Quality Transparency Los Angeles Times: Legislator Vows To Seek More Healthcare Coverage For Immigrants center_img The Associated Press: Winnebago Hospital Loses Medicare Funding For New Patients The Associated Press: Cleveland Abolishes Family Benefits For Unmarried Couples This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey is presenting a plan to divert low-level mentally ill offenders from jail and toward treatment. Among the recommendations: expanding law enforcement training to raise sensitivity and more effectively interact with the mentally ill; adding more urgent care centers to determine what services are needed; and establish detox centers for those with substance abuse issues. (7/23) City employees with domestic partners are now expected to marry if they want to continue receiving benefits, officials said. Cleveland City Council on Wednesday ended the program extending family benefits to employees’ domestic partners, Northeast Ohio Media Group reported Wednesday. The council also introduced legislation to terminate the city’s domestic partner registry. (7/23) Medicare funding for new patients ended Thursday at a troubled Nebraska hospital where, according to a federal report, inadequate treatment resulted in one death this year and harm to at least nine other patients. Spokesman Bob Moos for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services said payments may continue for up to 30 days for current patients at the Winnebago Indian Health Service Hospital in Winnebago. (7/23) Georgia Health News: WellStar In Talks To Buy Tenet’s Hospitals In State The Associated Press: Iowa, Federal Rules Differ Over Marijuana Oil Extract Health News Colorado: Fixed-Price Surgeries Come To Colorado Retirees A single mom given only months to live and other California right-to-die advocates are hoping a court will do what the Legislature did not: allow doctors to prescribe fatal medication for terminally ill people who want it. A San Diego Superior Court judge is expected Friday to hear a motion to dismiss a lawsuit against the state by Christy O’Donnell, two other terminally ill Californians and a San Diego doctor seeking such a right. The plaintiffs are backed by Compassion and Choices, an advocacy group that has supported legislative efforts and similar lawsuits in various states. (7/24) California Healthline: Evaluation Trumps Incarceration In L.A. Police Dept. Mental Health Efforts Money to repair highways, rising health care costs and controversies surrounding attempts to combat global warming are among topics the nation’s governors plan to tackle when they gather this week in West Virginia. The National Governors Association summer meeting, which runs Thursday through Saturday at The Greenbrier resort in White Sulphur Springs, comes as states find themselves grappling with an array of issues that defy easy answers. Those include long-range funding for infrastructure upgrades, the effects of prolonged drought, and adequately funding public schools and colleges. (7/23) Kaiser Health News: Having A Baby? Big Differences Noted In Hospital Quality Across Mass. The Associated Press: From Highways To Health Care, Challenges Confront Governors Another pressure point in the Springfield stalemate was relieved Thursday when a federal judge ruled that payments owed to many Cook County health care providers who serve the poor must be made despite the absence of a state budget. The ruling opens the spigot for much of an estimated $8 billion in state taxpayer contributions to the Medicaid program to go out without delay while Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democrats who control the General Assembly remain locked in a political fight that has stalled agreement on a spending plan for the budget year that began July 1. (Geiger and Venteicher, 7/23) When women prepare to give birth, their choice of a hospital is usually dependent on how close it is to their home, where their doctors practice or where their insurance coverage sends them. What they might not realize is that there are often big differences in quality. In Massachusetts, with a little effort, the 70,000 women who give birth each year can check on those measures that set hospitals apart on a tool developed by Boston public radio station WBUR. (Bebinger, 7/24) The Associated Press: Los Angeles DA Recommends Diverting Mentally Ill From Jails last_img read more

The Good News And The Bad News Drugs May Offer Relief To

first_imgThe Good News And The Bad News: Drugs May Offer Relief To Migraine Sufferers, But They Come At High Cost An analysis finds that the new medications, which could carry a $8,500 price tag, are not cost effective. In other pharmaceutical news, a gene therapy trial for Duchenne muscular dystrophy has begun, and an online pharmacy is fined for importing counterfeit cancer drugs. The Associated Press: Canadian Pharmacy To Be Fined Millions For Illegal Imports A pair of long-acting drugs that would be the first used for preventing migraines may cause a different kind of headache. Known as CGRP inhibitors, the injectable drugs work by interfering with a substance involved in modifying nerve signals, and recent studies found that two of the medicines reduce the frequency at which migraines appeared. This may be good news for the estimated 38 million migraine sufferers in the U.S., as well as investors, since the market for such drugs will be worth billions of dollars. (Silverman, 4/12) An online pharmacy that bills itself as Canada’s largest is expected to be fined $34 million Friday for importing counterfeit cancer drugs and other unapproved pharmaceuticals into the United States, a sentence that one advocacy group called too light for such a heinous crime. Canada Drugs has filled millions of prescriptions by offering itself as a safe alternative for patients to save money on expensive drugs, and its founder, Kristian Thorkelson, has been hailed as an industry pioneer for starting the company in 2001. (Volz, 4/13) Stat: Pfizer Latest To Test Gene Therapy For Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy  center_img Stat: New Migraine Drugs May Give Insurers A Headache Pfizer (PFE) has begun its first human trials of a gene therapy to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy, following two other companies that have launched trials and one treatment for the disease in recent years. The first patient received the experimental therapy, called PF-06939926, on March 22, Pfizer said Thursday. The study is expected to run through 2019 and to enroll about a dozen boys from 5 to 12 years old at four sites. (Cooney, 4/12) This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Medicare For All Was Once A Fringe Policy Proposal Now Its A

first_img Medicare for All has become a litmus test for 2020 Democrats, but the party is struggling to balance the grassroots enthusiasm for the cause with the political challenges of making it a reality. Kamala Harris was the latest candidate to come under fire from the left, right and center. In a widely watched CNN town hall, the California senator quickly embraced “Medicare for All” and said she was ready to see the private health insurance industry killed off. But quickly, she and her staff offered a more nuanced story: Harris also backs many incremental, go-slow plans that aren’t as radical, and add up to something more like “Medicare for More” or a strengthened version of Obamacare. (Ollstein, 1/31) The Hill: ‘Medicare For All’ Opens Up Dem Divide  NPR: ‘Medicare-For-All’ Endorsed By Some Democrats Considering A Run For President The embrace of “Medicare for all” legislation by top 2020 Democratic presidential candidates has opened up a rift in the party. Democrats highlighted health care in the 2018 midterm elections and reclaimed the House majority by picking up 40 seats. But their message was focused on protecting ObamaCare, not implementing a single-payer system — which is favored by progressives. Some on the left maintain that backing Medicare for all legislation is a must for anyone who wants to secure the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020.  (Weixel and Hellmann, 1/30) “Medicare-for-all,” once widely considered a fringe proposal for providing health care in the U.S., is getting more popular. Several Democratic presidential hopefuls are getting behind the idea. Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., endorsed the approach Monday in a CNN town hall-style event, saying her aim would be to eliminate all private insurance. “Who of us has not had that situation, where you’ve got to wait for approval and the doctor says, well, ‘I don’t know if your insurance company is going to cover this,’ ” Harris said. “Let’s eliminate all of that. Let’s move on.” (Kodjak, 1/30) center_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. ‘Medicare For All’ Was Once A Fringe Policy Proposal, Now It’s A Litmus Test For 2020 Dems Progressive Democrats have seized on “Medicare For All” as a winning health strategy as they kick off their campaigns for 2020. But what does that mean in a party where leadership is advocating for incremental fixes to the health law instead of sweeping policy changes geared toward universal coverage? Politico: Harris Dives Into ‘Medicare For All’ Minefield last_img read more

LEGO Star Wars The Skywalker Saga – All 9 films in one

first_img This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply. Sign up for the Mobile NewsletterSign Up Please keep me up to date with special offers and news from Goodtoknow and other brands operated by TI Media Limited via email. You can unsubscribe at any time. If you told me a few months ago that one of my favourite experiences of E3 2019 would be LEGO game, I’d have brushed your wild predictions off in seconds. But upon my jetlagged return to Trusted Towers, it’s something I can’t get out of my head. Traveller’s Tales’ now archaic gameplay formula has long since hit its breaking point, with licenses continuing to abide by a tired cycle of studs, jokes and exploration that simply isn’t that compelling anymore. That changes with The Skywalker Saga, a next generation vision of what LEGO can do. Trusted Reviews has compiled everything you need to know about LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga including all the latest news, release date, gameplay and more.Related: Amazon Prime Day 2019LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga release date – when is it coming out?Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment confirmed a 2020 release date for The Skywalker Saga across PS4, Xbox One and PC. Our money is on a Switch release, too.It’s curious that it isn’t launching until after Rise of The Skywalker, perhaps they’re hoping to avoid major spoilers or simply work on their new technology as long as they can. Either one sounds good to us!Related: Final Fantasy 7 Remake PreviewLEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga trailer – how does it look?LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga gameplay preview – how does it play?I had a chance to see a behind-closed-doors demo for The Skywalker Saga at E3 2019, and I came away with my feelings on LEGO titles completely reinvigorated. No longer am I expecting a simplistic platforming adventure with trivial puzzles and light exploration. The studio’s new vision is far grander, echoing the freedom of No Man’s Sky instead of linear, scripted levels. Obviously, the latter will still be present, with all 9 films being either completely remade or brought into the LEGO limelight for the first time. The older films aren’t just remasters, they’re built from the ground-up with a new engine. Related: Cyberpunk 2077The E3 2019 presentation begins with a scrawl through the user interface, presenting all nine films in an easily accessible selection menu. After being given a brief tour, we’re thrust into the Millennium Falcon and taken to the sand-drenched plains of Tatooine. One of the first things I noticed was perspective. You now play from a third-person viewpoint peering from behind the shoulder, closing in on the player in a way not dissimilar to Uncharted or God of War. Except, you’re an adorable LEGO figurine. While it might seem like a small tweak, this transformed how I viewed my surroundings. During the demo we were taken through what is apparently a minuscule section of this colossal galaxy, drifting through tight corridors and vast desserts all crawling with intriguing collectibles. Studs are still spread all over the place, so I expect Mini Kits and True Jedi gauges won’t be going anywhere. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Battles have been overhauled massively with a combo system that allows you to string together attacks that vary depending on which weapons you’ve equipped. Shooting has also been altered to a tried-and-true ADS (aim down sights) method which works really well, offering a lock-on option for younger players. Related: DOOM Eternal PreviewNeither of these additions are going to challenge you too much, since at its core, this is still an experience created for all ages. But that’s fine, I know older and younger generations of players who adore LEGO titles, their accessibility being the reason behind their appeal. I go to them for cutesy, rewarding platforming inside universes I’m already familiar with. Having grown up with the original duo of LEGO Star Wars titles on PS2 and Xbox, I’m pretty excited to see the first six films completely reimagined. It’s a harsh truth, but the level design of those original titles is now outdated, giving way to overly tight environments and puzzles that lack the complexity of recent entries. If these are all recreated with the full potential of Star Wars in The Skywalker Saga, we’re in for a treat.I’m pinching myself while typing this, but I’m also flabbergasted by how stellar The Skywalker Saga looks from a visual perspective. This is all thanks to how Traveller’s Tales has analysed how LEGO reacts to elements of the real world. Sand clings to the feet of both humans and animals as they walk across Tatooine, the same applying to snow or rogue particles in space. It looks luscious, even with a year and change until release.First impressionsLEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga gives the Traveller’s Tales formula a much-needed kick in the butt, shaking up mechanics that have remained commonplace for over a decade now. However, it’s struck a balance that guarantees purists of all ages won’t feel dissapointed. We’d also like to send you special offers and news just by email from other carefully selected companies we think you might like. Your personal details will not be shared with those companies – we send the emails and you can unsubscribe at any time. Please tick here if you are happy to receive these messages.By submitting your information, you agree to the Terms & Conditions and Privacy & Cookies Policy. Show More Unlike other sites, we thoroughly review everything we recommend, using industry standard tests to evaluate products. We’ll always tell you what we find. We may get a commission if you buy via our price links.Tell us what you think – email the Editorlast_img read more

Sonos One Deal Save a Whopping £50 with Amazons Bundle Offer

first_imgSonos One speakers are an asset to your home sound system set-up. Build a greater sound with its dual Class-D amplifiers without sacrificing space, or an aesthetically pleasing home with the Sonos One’s sleek white or black casing options. They are also equipped with the ability to tune in and adjust to any given room’s acoustics for optimised audio quality.Related: Amazon Prime Day Sonos and Soundbar DealsCustomise based on where and at what volume you want your audio output to be. Able to control through the Sonos smartphone app, the Sonos One also comes with Amazon’s AI, Alexa, built in, or, if you’d prefer, Google Assistant. This means you can also use voice commands in order to chop and change what’s playing. This is an especially useful feature of this later generation, meaning anyone can control what’s playing, rather than simply relying on having an app on your phone.With the added bonus of AI assistance, we concluded in our review that the Sonos One speaker “isn’t just a great music player but the most flexible smart speaker, too.” Best Sonos One Speaker DealSonos One (Gen 2) – The powerful Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in, BlackMake the most of this bundle deal and get two for £348, saving you £42 and helping to build a fantastic home sound system.Amazon|Buy 2 for £348|Now £195.00View DealNow £195.00|Buy 2 for £348|Amazon This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply. With a £42 saving, buy two Sonos One speakers for less in this Amazon multi-buy offer.There is already a small discount on individual Sonos One speakers (£195 down from £199), but you can go one step further for a truly phenomenal deal.The ideal time to pick up a pair of Sonos speakers if you’re looking to really optimise on a great sound around the home, you can now buy two of the speakers at a reduced rate. Place two of the Sonos One speakers into your Amazon basket and buy for just £348 instead of £390. Best Sonos One Speaker DealSonos One (Gen 2) – The powerful Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in, BlackMake the most of this bundle deal and get two for £348, saving you £42 and helping to build a fantastic home sound system.Amazon|Buy 2 for £348|Now £195.00View DealNow £195.00|Buy 2 for £348|Amazon We’d also like to send you special offers and news just by email from other carefully selected companies we think you might like. Your personal details will not be shared with those companies – we send the emails and you can unsubscribe at any time. Please tick here if you are happy to receive these messages.By submitting your information, you agree to the Terms & Conditions and Privacy & Cookies Policy. Show More Unlike other sites, we thoroughly review everything we recommend, using industry standard tests to evaluate products. We’ll always tell you what we find. We may get a commission if you buy via our price links.Tell us what you think – email the Editorcenter_img Build or expand your sound set-up today and you can pick up two powerful Sonos One speakers for just £348, granting you a saving of £42. For those out there that appreciate quality audio, it’s a bundle not to be missed.Want to stay up to date with Amazon Prime Day 2019? We’ve got you covered. For more amazing offers, follow us @TrustedDealsUKWe may earn a commission if you click a deal and buy an item. That’s why we want to make sure you’re well-informed and happy with your purchase, so that you’ll continue to rely on us for your buying advice needs. Sign up for the Mobile NewsletterSign Up Please keep me up to date with special offers and news from Goodtoknow and other brands operated by TI Media Limited via email. You can unsubscribe at any time. Dealslast_img read more

Postmedia partners with tech news service The Logic Another bet on journalism

first_img Email 0 Comments Facebook May 22, 201910:07 PM EDTLast UpdatedMay 22, 201910:11 PM EDT Filed under News Featured Stories Postmedia Network, Inc., the company that owns the National Post, will take a minority interest in The Logic, a subscription-based online news service that reports on the innovation economy.The deal is in its early stages and terms have not yet been agreed, but a letter of intent signed Wednesday will see Postmedia invest in The Logic and offer a selection of its work through online products including the National Post and various city papers.Some of The Logic’s content will be available to National Post readers, while some will remain restricted to paying subscribers.The Logic launched last year as a subscription based news service that also offers conference calls and daily briefings focused on tech and innovation. It has published ground-breaking work on issues such as Toronto’s dealings with Sidewalk Labs, and Facebook’s controversial advertising policies.The innovation economy is thriving in Canada and The Logic has tapped into the stories and insights that make it tick advertisement Postmedia CEO Andrew MacLeod: “Partnering with The Logic provides the opportunity to build, grow and validate digital subscription models which are showing increasing traction around the world.”Peter J. Thompson/Financial Post/File Postmedia partners with tech news service The Logic: ‘Another bet on journalism’ The deal will see Postmedia invest in The Logic and offer a selection of its work through online products including the National Post and various city papers More Comment Recommended For YouU.S. FDA approves Karyopharm Therapeutics’ blood cancer drugOntario Cannabis Store pulls affected CannTrust products amid Health Canada probeUPDATE 2-FDA approves expanded label for Regeneron/Sanofi’s DupixentTrump pick for Fed seat says doesn’t want to pull rug from under market -CNBCAP Explains: US sanctions on Huawei bite, but who gets hurt? What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation Join the conversation → Joseph Brean Share this storyPostmedia partners with tech news service The Logic: ‘Another bet on journalism’ Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Sponsored By: Headed by David Skok, formerly of the Toronto Star and Boston Globe, The Logic will retain its independence, and will continue to serve its community of subscribers, while also trying to expand it through the vastly larger distribution network of Postmedia.“The premise is that tech is not a siloed vertical, it really is the future of Canada,” Skok said in an interview. For a small startup, he said the investment and access to distribution will allow the news operation to grow and hire more journalists.Skok said that offering for free what it has so far charged money for will not dilute the value of his team’s work any more than the syndication strategies used by large American media outlets such as The New York Times and Washington Post. On the contrary, he expects it to lead to more subscribers through greater visibility.“It’s another bet on journalism for Postmedia,” said Postmedia CEO Andrew MacLeod in an interview.He described the partnership as a “graceful” way of simultaneously chasing the proven potential of digital subscriptions, while not threatening the company’s broader strategy of digital advertising.Putting up increasingly strict paywalls in pursuit of subscription dollars is a common strategy, but can be at cross-purposes to a digital advertising strategy that aims at the largest possible audience.MacLeod said there is evidence, however, that people are willing to pay for certain “bespoke” content bundles, such as The Logic, and these can be profitable.MacLeod also described the investment as something of a test for that strategy, which could be replicated in areas other than the innovation economy, such as food and wine or sports.“The innovation economy is thriving in Canada and The Logic has tapped into the stories and insights that make it tick while demonstrating, in a very short period of time, its strength and credibility in the space,” MacLeod said in a statement. “Partnering with The Logic provides the opportunity to build, grow and validate digital subscription models which are showing increasing traction around the world.”• Email: jbrean@nationalpost.com | Twitter: Reddit Twitter ← Previous Next →last_img read more

Nissan LEAF NISMO RC IMx KURO Show Up At CES Video

first_img14 photos See Also Source: Electric Vehicle News Nissan Trademarks IMS & IMQ: Possible Electric Crossovers Nissan CES 2019: “See The Invisible” Plus Maybe 60-kWh LEAF e-Plus Nissan LEAF Nismo RC At The Track: Videos Nissan shows three EVs at CES.The LEAF e+ was not the only Nissan‘s EV at the 2019 CES in Las Vegas – the other two are LEAF NISMO RC and IMx KURO concept.The Nissan LEAF NISMO RC is a proper racing car, based on the second-generation LEAF.  With more than double the maximum power and torque output of its predecessor, this is one hot electric machine. Sadly, Nissan won’t sell this car to the public.“With dual electric motors, advanced battery technology, all-wheel drive capability and an aggressive, restyled body shape, the purpose-built car represents the pinnacle of electric power. The two electric motors, at opposite ends of the chassis, manage power independently to each axle. The motors produce 240 kilowatts combined (120 kW each) and an astounding 640 Nm of instant torque to the wheels. A new all-wheel-drive system gives the LEAF NISMO RC its outstanding cornering prowess.A long hood and Nissan’s signature V-motion grille highlight the totally restyled front end. The distinctive silver-and-black paint scheme with NISMO red accents – similar to the Nissan Formula E car – make the LEAF NISMO RC seem like it’s in constant motion, even when sitting still at the starting line.”center_img 4 photos The IMx KURO, on the other hand, is a concept all-electric, long-range crossover. We are all waiting on the production SUV/crossover from Nissan.Nissan IMx quick specs:up to 600 km (373 miles) of range in JC08 (which means about 225 miles/360 km translated to real world/EPA driving)double-motor all-wheel drive – 320 kW and 700 Nm of system output .embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; } Nissan LEAF NISMO RC specs:0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 3.4 secondsbattery capacity: undiscloseddual motor all-wheel drivesystem output: 240 kW (2x 120 kW) and 640 Nm of torquecurb weight: 1,220 kg Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 13, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

Review VeloMini Scoot and T1 trailer turns an electric scooter into a

first_imgJust when I thought I had seen all there was to see in the electric scooter industry, the VeloMini Scoot and T1 trailer popped up on my radar. I’ve seen bicycles pull trailers before, but I’ve never had an electric scooter that I could do all of my grocery shopping with… until now. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://youtu.be/ee5nKd7zjWoThe post Review: VeloMini Scoot and T1 trailer turns an electric scooter into a truck appeared first on Electrek. Source: Charge Forwardlast_img read more

Trainers held BHA confidence vote

first_imgHorse racing Topics British Horseracing Authority Since you’re here… Read more First published on Mon 9 Jun 2008 19.01 EDT Trainers held BHA confidence vote Share on WhatsApp Share via Email Share on Facebook Share on Pinterest … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Arnold said the question, “Do you have confidence in the BHA’s security department?”, was posted in a section of the NTF’s website which could be accessed only by its members, of which there are approximately 560, representing more than 90% of trainers in the country. The vote was available for “about a couple of months” and seven trainers voted, five replying ‘No’.”We regularly have a question on our website,” Arnold continued. “It can be anything, but it’s always a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ question and it’s a little bit of interest. It’s not something we base a lot of policy on, though we may do.” “We were aware of the poll,” said BHA spokesman Paul Struthers, who played down its significance. “It was entirely a matter for the NTF and we certainly are not opposed to people expressing their opinion, though the very small response would strongly suggest that it wasn’t a primary concern for the NTF’s members.”The BHA’s independent regulatory director, John Bridgeman, is to meet with the NTF council in November.Several trainers were called to give evidence at the trial of Fallon and five others on charges of conspiracy to defraud punters, which collapsed in December when a judge ruled there was no case to answer. A report by Dame Elizabeth Neville, commissioned by the BHA, has since offered no serious criticism of racing’s rulers for their actions in relation to the trial.Trainer Ralph Beckett indicated yesterday that he was leaning against sending Friday’s Oaks winner Look Here to The Curragh for next month’s Irish Oaks, citing her inexperience. He named the St Leger on September 13 as a more likely target.Ron Cox’s tip of the day Drawn Gold 7.15 ChesterA Newmarket winner last season on just his fourth outing, this lightly raced four-year-old is still at the right end of the handicap. Drawn Gold shaped promisingly on his return when staying on into third behind Motafarred over a mile at Pontefract. He had to be switched to make his run, by which time the winner had flown, and Drawn Gold should be suited by this extra two furlongs. Kieren Fallon The Recap: sign up for the best of the Guardian’s sport coverage Support The Guardian Brian Radford Shares11 Website poll held in the wake of Kieren Fallon scandal met with apathetic response from trainers Britain’s trainers have held an informal vote of confidence in the sport’s ruling body following last year’s collapse of the fraud trial involving Kieren Fallon and others. The revelation shows the extent to which relationships within racing were undermined by the trial, though the response to the poll has proved apathetic.Rupert Arnold, chief executive of the National Trainers’ Federation, said yesterday that he had now closed the poll, which had been conducted solely through the NTF’s website. “There was a certain amount of reaction to the trial and the British Horseracing Authority’s handling of that, throughout racing, so the question was initiated by that,” he said. “And it doesn’t seem to be an issue for trainers, if this vote is any kind of barometer.” Share on Messenger Share on Twitter Share via Email Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn British Horseracing Authority Share on Twitter Mon 9 Jun 2008 19.01 EDT Reuse this contentlast_img read more

Issues To Consider From The AstraZeneca Enforcement Action

first_imgThis post summarized the recent SEC Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against AstraZeneca in which the company, without admitting or denying the SEC’s findings, agreed to cough up $5.5 million.This post continues the analysis by highlighting additional issues to consider.TimelineIn an August 9, 2010 filing, AstraZeneca first disclosed:“AstraZeneca PLC has received inquiries from the US Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission in connection with an investigation into Foreign Corrupt Practices Act issues in the pharmaceutical industry. AstraZeneca is cooperating with their inquiries.”Thus from start to finish, AstraZeneca’s FCPA scrutiny lasted over six years.It is absolutely inexcusable on any level for FCPA scrutiny to last over six years. If the SEC wants the public to view its FCPA enforcement program as legitimate, credible, and effective, it must resolve instances of FCPA scrutiny much faster.Sparse AllegationsRarely has an SEC enforcement action against an issuer contained such few allegations against, well, the issuer.Aside from the two conclusory legal allegations:(i) AstraZeneca violated the books and records provisions because its subsidiaries mischaracterized improper payments as legitimate expenses in AZN’s books and records; and(ii) AstraZeneca’s internal controls were deficient because with the benefit of hindsight there were things the company could have perhaps done betterthe SEC’s order contains no substantive allegations against AstraZeneca itself as opposed to its China and Russia subsidiaries.Approaching 25Certain people seem to be confused about the reasons why FCPA enforcement has generally increased over the past decade.However, there are several practical (as well as provocative) reasons.Among the more obvious practical reasons (no doubt it is provocative as well) is that in 2002 the FCPA enforcement agencies came up with the theory that employees (such as physicians, nurses, mid-wives, lab personnel, etc.) of certain foreign health care systems are “foreign officials” under the FCPA and thus occupy a status equal to Presidents, Prime Ministers, and other bona-fide foreign officials that Congress had in mind when passing the FCPA in 1977.It is one of the more aggressive and dubious FCPA enforcement theories there is.  It has never been subjected to judicial scrutiny and perhaps most telling as to its validity and legitimacy, the DOJ has never charged an individual with an FCPA violation based on this theory.Nevertheless, the theory is frequently used in FCPA enforcement actions and the AstraZeneca enforcement action provides yet example in that the conduct at issue focused on various things of value provided to health care providers in China and Russia. Sure the enforcement action found “only” FCPA books and records and internal controls violations (presumably because the U.S. nexus needed for the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions to be triggered against a foreign company were lacking), but make no mistake this enforcement action was all about the alleged “foreign officials.”According to FCPAnalytics, the number of FCPA enforcement actions based on the enforcement theory that employees of certain foreign health care systems are “foreign officials” under the FCPA is approaching 25.Interested in learning about other practical reasons for the general increase in FCPA enforcement? This prior post details three historical events that together served as the foundation for 35% of all corporate enforcement actions between 2007-2011 and resulted in 55% of the settlement amounts in corporate enforcement actions between 2007-2011.No Charged Bribery DisgorgementThe $5.5 million AstraZeneca enforcement action was mostly comprised of disgorgement and prejudgment interest (approximately $5.1 million) even though the company was not charged with violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions.As highlighted in this previous post, so-called no-charged bribery disgorgement is troubling.Among others, Paul Berger (here) (a former Associate Director of the SEC Division of Enforcement) has stated that “settlements invoking disgorgement but charging no primary anti-bribery violations push the law’s boundaries, as disgorgement is predicated on the common-sense notion that an actual, jurisdictionally-cognizable bribe was paid to procure the revenue identified by the SEC in its complaint.” Berger noted that such “no-charged bribery disgorgement settlements appear designed to inflict punishment rather than achieve the goals of equity.”Chinese Travel CompaniesAs highlighted in this recent guest post, several FCPA enforcement actions have been based on alleged improper travel involving alleged Chinese officials. Often times, this travel is facilitated through Chinese travel agencies – a well-known corruption risk.For instance, in the recent SciClone enforcement action the SEC found:“Local Chinese travel companies were routinely hired to provide services (such as arranging transportation, accommodations, and meals for HCPs) in connection with what were ostensibly legitimate conferences, seminars, and other events. In addition to a lack of due diligence for these third party vendors … there was a lack of controls over the events to ensure they had an appropriate business purpose and that the events actually occurred.”Similarly, in the recent Novartis enforcement action, the SEC found:“As part of its normal business operations, Sandoz China hired local Chinese travel companies to arrange transportation, accommodations, and meals for HCPs in connection with education events. However, in many instances, the actual trips did not include an educational purpose or the scientific/educational components were minimal in comparison to the sightseeing or recreational activities, and were instead a method of influencing the HCPs. The related expenses were approved and paid with little or no supporting documentation.”[…]Between 2011 and 2013, employees and agents of Novartis China made payments to government officials in China in connection with pharmaceutical sales. The payments were made through event planning and travel companies retained by Novartis China ostensibly to arrange transportation, accommodations and meals for HCPs in connection with educational conferences and other business activities. Through the use of these complicit vendors, HCPs were provided with improper inducements to prescribe or recommend Novartis products. The subsidiary recorded these payments as legitimate selling and marketing costs in its books.Novartis China retained numerous third-party travel and event planning vendors to organize and manage marketing for HCPs events, both locally within China, and outside China. The range of services varied but in some cases vendors arranged the venue, food, entertainment, flights, hotels, and transit depending upon the location of the event and number of participants. In the past several years, Novartis China has hosted thousands of such events, and the pharmaceutical business unit within Novartis China was the largest consumer of these services.Despite the widespread use of third-party travel and event planning vendors in China, Novartis did not have sufficient internal accounting controls or anticorruption compliance measures in connection with the use of these vendors. Among other things, Novartis failed to conduct sufficient training of its sales staff and managers to prevent and detect inappropriate payments made to and/or through these vendors, failed to conduct proper due diligence in connection with these vendors and failed to ensure sufficient and appropriate support for the selling and marketing expenses submitted by these vendors.”On this topic, the SEC’s AstraZeneca order found:“In numerous instances, AZ China sales staff submitted, and managerial employees knowingly approved, fake fapiao (tax receipts) for fraudulent reimbursements to generate cash that was used to make improper payments to HCPs.Other methods were also used, such as establishing bank accounts in doctors’ names as part of an improper payment scheme, or engaging a collusive travel vendor who submitted fake or inflated invoices to generate cash that could be used to funnel money to HCPs.As a result of the deficient controls, AZ China employees were regularly reimbursed for submitted expenses despite inadequate supporting documentation.[…]AZN did not employ reasonable due diligence and monitoring of third-party contractors engaged by its China and Russia subsidiaries, such as travel vendors who provided false invoices to the subsidiaries’ employees that facilitated the unauthorized use of corporate funds to improperly incentivize HCPs.”last_img read more

Jeffrey Chow Is The Lawyer Implicated Connection With The Keppel Offshore Marine

first_imgIn connection with last week’s net $105.5 million Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against Keppel Offshore & Marine (see here for the prior post), the DOJ noted that it “also unsealed charges … against a former senior member of KOM’s legal department, who pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA on Aug. 29, 2017 in the Eastern District of New York.”That individual is Jeffrey Chow, a U.S. citizen and Tulane educated lawyer, who had various positions in the legal department of KOM “including Administrative Manager, General Manager and Director, from at least in or about and between 1990 and 2017.” (See here for the DOJ information).The conduct alleged in the Chow information is the same Brazil bribery schemes alleged in the KOM enforcement action and the DOJ alleges:“To facilitate the payment of those bribes and to conceal the true nature and purpose of the payments, in accordance with the established practices at [KOM] Chow and other employees at [KOM] created and executed false agreements on behalf of [KOM] with consulting companies controlled in whole or in part by [KOM Agent]. These agreements falsely represented that payments were made to [KOM Agent] for his assistance and support in discussions and negotiations with prospective customers when, in fact, portions of these payments were being paid as bribes. Certain of these agreements also falsely represented that [KOM Agent] was abiding by anti-bribery laws and was not making improper payments.”The DOJ alleges that Chow:“coordinated the signing, in Houston, Texas, of a marketing and sales representation agreement between [KOM and KOM Agent];”“executed an agreement … with [KOM Agent]”;“executed a marketing, consulting and services agreement [with KOM Agent]; and“sent an e-mail to an executive of [KOM] discussing how to structure commission payments that [KOM] would make to [KOM Agent]”last_img read more

Record Texas MA But Who is Doing the Legal Work

first_img Remember me Mergermarket reports that a handful of large corporate law firms are benefiting greatly from the M&A boom of 2014. Three Texas firms – V&E, Baker Botts and Bracewell – are leading their fair share of the deals. Out-of-state firms, including Latham, Jones Day and Kirkland, score big, too. The Texas Lawbook exclusively lists the top 20 M&A firms and there are some surprises . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Password Lost your password?center_img Username Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.last_img read more

Love Conquers Ageism

first_imgby, Kavan Peterson, Editor, ChangingAging.orgTweetShareShareEmail0 SharesOne year ago an unknown film called Alive Inside took the Sundance Film Festival by storm and showed audiences that the spark of life can be ignited in the most unlikeliest places through the universal power of music.What I love most about Alive Inside is how it changed the way thousands (maybe millions) of people think about dementia, and by extension, their own identity and their own aging.Since its success, I have been keeping an eager eye out for the next film to have similar potential to transform the way people think about aging. Last week I found one – The Age of Love.If there is a greater universal truth than the power of music, it is the power of love. Hands down. The Age of Love is a ground breaking new documentary that captures the universal nature of love through a humorous, poignant and unprecedented inside look at the dating scene for 70-to-90-year-olds.The Age of Love is an almost painfully honest look at ordinary people finding themselves unexpectedly looking for love in late life. It follows eight older adults in the city of Rochester, N.Y., who agreed to be filmed as they participate in the emotional rollercoaster of speed dating.Yes, speed dating — for septa-and-octogenarians. It’s a growing trend nationally and when filmmaker Steven Loring learned that 30 adults age 70-to-90 had signed up for a speed dating event in his home town of Rochester he started calling participants to ask if he could interview them and film their experience. 15 Dates 5 Minutes Each — And Lots of Decisions to Make!Speed dating is a structured event that gathers a group of singles together and pairs them with one-another in a series of five minute mini-dates. Participants note down potential romantic interests on a scorecard that is submitted to an organizer after the event. No contact information is exchanged but if the scorecard indicates chemistry individuals are notified by mail and it’s on them to take it from there.Sound like a gimmick put on for reality TV? One audience member at an early screening did call it “the best reality show I have ever seen.” That is actually a profound compliment to the filmmaker and participants.Dating late in life is no joke. We are inundated with cultural messages and Janice on a 5 minute speed date with Pacho.advertisements telling us we are less beautiful and less desirable the older we get. Many people find themselves alone and isolated just at the point in life when they most need and desire companionship. As Janice, one of the film subjects, put it, “The heart might even be capable of more love now then before because I think I have a lot of love to give but I don’t have all the distractions I had before.”Loring told the website Senior Planet about an even more poignant conversation he had with another subject in the film. That woman told him, “‘My own children don’t ask me what’s in my heart, what I’m feeling. They ask me what I need, they take care of me, they love me. But they never ask me about what I’m feeling emotionally. And I have so much to tell you…’”I’m not reviewing this documentary as a film critic but as a pro-aging activist. From a critical standpoint it’s a phenomenal film, no question – it’s getting rave ratings. But from a transformational viewpoint this film humanizes aging in an unprecedented way. It’s subversively radical. This film lets viewers – no matter their age – genuinely experience the truth that love and companionship transcend age.Why is that subversive? It flies in the face of our culture’s rampant ageism. Ageism is perpetuated by the mass media through propaganda that tells us that love, passion, sex and beauty are the exclusive domains of youth.“When they put themselves out there and participated in this event these people just came alive,” Loring said. “They told me they felt liberated from society’s stereotypes.”Just like governments use propaganda during times of war to dehumanize the enemy, our mainstream media uses propaganda to dehumanize old people and pressure all of us into buying youth-centric products. I’m not sure I can think of a more damaging stereotype than the myth that older people or disabled people or people living with cognitive changes like dementia do not desire or deserve love, companionship and physical intimacy as much as anyone else.The beauty and power of The Age of Love is that it doesn’t hit viewers over the head with this message or an agenda. And there are no fairy tale endings in this film. It simply gives viewers an experience where they feel what these people feel. That is how change happens.However, Loring does want pro-aging activists like us to help him spread the word. He has a beautiful plan to bring this film to the masses. He is organizing nationwide grassroots screening events in February 2015 around the theme of Valentine’s Day:Beginning on Valentine’s Day 2015, we will be offering screenings of THE AGE OF LOVE for your local theater, corporation, residential community, ‘healthy aging’ organization, conference or school.We’ve chosen Saturday, February 14th as the launch date in order to bring attention to stereotypes about the hearts of seniors on a day typically devoted to youth and romance. We want to send a strong message to national media that the desire to be seen and understood by a companion is universal, and that the urge to love and be loved remains strong, regardless of age.CLICK HERE for details: theAgeofLoveMovie.com/host-a-screening/Steve’s goal is to organize 300 screenings throughout the month of February reaching 25,000 people. He’s specifically targeting organizations that can follow-up with organized speed dating events in their communities. It’s super easy, cheap and incredibly fun and impactful.I have a challenge specifically for ChangingAging’s audience. I know a lot of LTC culture change organizations read this blog. I’m talking to you now – LOVE is not just for “active seniors”.  I want to see nursing homes and assisted living homes and memory care homes  and home care agencies get behind this film. I want to see YOU hosting screenings AND hosting speed dating events. I know of at least one nursing home that has gotten involved and I’m going to report on their experience.Don’t own a nursing home? You can help out too. One thing I learned from Alive Inside’s experience trying to break into the theaters was that film distributors, funders and even the media really pay attention to social media metrics – how many likes the film has on its Facebook page, how many notes of interest/support on the timeline or how many followers and retweets is has on Twitter. If you think this message deserves to be shared, “Like“ The Age of Love on Facebook here, follow it on Twitter here, and please post a comment.Who’s in? The Age of Love – Official Trailer from Steven Loring on Vimeo.Related PostsAlive InsideLast summer Al Power called me to tell me about a film maker who wanted to explore the connection between life, art, music and aging. I jumped at the chance to to meet up with them at St. John’s and we spent a day there talking about ideas and doing…“Alive Inside” Viral Video Sweeps Internet In Advance of World PremiereFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE A video clip from the upcoming documentary Alive Inside demonstrating the power of music to awaken and transform a man seemingly living in a stupor in a nursing home has swept the Internet with over 3.5 million views in only three days. Debuting in New York April…Looking For Best Intergenerational ProgramsI’m speaking on a panel about intergenerational engagement at a local conference in Seattle. I’d love to get feedback from or audience on amazing intergenerational programs from around the world.TweetShareShareEmail0 SharesTags: DisruptAging lovelast_img read more

New technology enables round the clock observation of dementia patients in their

first_img Source:https://www.surrey.ac.uk/news/dementia-patients-could-remain-home-longer-thanks-ground-breaking-technology Jun 5 2018Innovative new technology will enable people with dementia to receive round the clock observation and live independently in their own homes, a new study in the Journal PL0S One reports.During this unique study, researchers from the University of Surrey in partnership with Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust have developed state of the art AI technologies, powered by machine learning algorithms, to monitor the wellbeing of people with dementia.The study known as Technology Integrated Health Management (TIHM) for dementia, uses the ‘Internet of Things,’ a network of internet enabled devices (sensors, monitors and trackers) installed in homes, which can detect an immediate crisis as well as changes in people’s health and daily routines. Any change could indicate a potential health issue and if identified early could prevent a person from becoming seriously unwell and requiring emergency hospital admission.Related StoriesCommon medications can masquerade as dementia in seniorsCaregiver depression linked to increased emergency department visits for patients with dementiaAn active brain and body associated with reduced risk of dementiaThe well-being of people with dementia can also be monitored using this innovative technology which can detect agitation and irritability.Dr Payam Barnaghi, Reader in Machine Intelligence at the University of Surrey, said:”The impact of a simple algorithm on the life of people with dementia is staggering. Our algorithms and the unique technology it powers means that round the clock observation of people is possible and this not only helps inform clinical decision making but enhances the care and support given to people with dementia and their carers.”Technology plays a growing role in our healthcare system and it is crucial we capitalize on this to improve the care people receive.”Dr Helen Rostill, Director of Innovation and Development at Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted to be working with the University of Surrey on this ground-breaking study which we believe has the potential to not only transform support for people with dementia and their carers but also people with other long term and complex health conditions.”Figures from the Alzheimer’s Society indicate that there are 930,000-people with dementia in the UK, with numbers set to rise to over 1 million by 2025. Currently there is no cure for this very challenging illness, placing financial strain on the NHS as the cost of care continues to soar. Innovative technology like this will help slow the decline and maintain independent living for people with dementia.last_img read more

NSAIDs use may increase cardiovascular risk associated with osteoarthritis

first_imgJun 13 2018Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are the cornerstone of pain management in patients with osteoarthritisThe results of a study presented today at the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR 2018) suggest that over two thirds of the increased cardiovascular risk associated with osteoarthritis is linked to the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).Osteoarthritis is a common condition that makes a person’s joints stiff and painful, particularly in the morning. It is caused by, amongst others, thinning of the cartilage within the joints, which allows the bones to rub against each. Joint swelling and pain are frequent symptoms. It is the most common of all the different types of arthritis, and typically becomes more common as people get older.”The examination of cardiovascular risk among individuals with osteoarthritis is an important area of research as very little is known about the association, despite osteoarthritis being the most common rheumatic disease with high prevalence among the elderly,” said Professor Thomas Dörner, Chairperson of the Abstract Selection Committee, EULAR. “This study is important because it provides new information about the potential causal role of NSAIDs for the observed cardiovascular complications among individuals with osteoarthritis.”Recent research suggests that osteoarthritis is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD) and several mechanisms have been suggested to account for this association. One of these is the frequent use of NSAIDs in the treatment of osteoarthritis as they have been shown to be a proven risk factor for CVD.Related StoriesResearchers report new regenerative medicine approach for treating osteoarthritis of the kneeDaily life disability before hip replacement may predict poor post-operative outcomesUsing gene therapy strategies to rejuvenate aging cells and treat osteoarthritis”To the best of our knowledge, this is the first longitudinal study to evaluate the mediating role of NSAID use in the relationship between osteoarthritis and CVD in a large population‐based sample,” said Professor Aslam Anis, School of Population and Public Health, University of British Columbia (study author). “Our results indicate that osteoarthritis is an independent risk factor for CVD and suggest a substantial proportion of the increased risk is due to the use of NSAIDs. This is highly relevant because NSAIDs are some of the most commonly used drugs to manage pain in patients with osteoarthritis.”Results of the study demonstrate that people with osteoarthritis had a 23% higher risk of developing CVD. The increased risk of congestive heart failure (CHF), ischemic heart disease (IHD), and stroke was 42%, 17% and 14% respectively. Investigators then calculated the impact of NSAID use on the increased risk and found that 68% of the total effect of osteoarthritis on CVD risk was due to NSAID use. The proportion of the increased risk due to NSAIDs seen in CHF was calculated at 45% and more than 90% for IHD and stroke respectively.This population-based cohort study used data from 7,743 osteoarthritis patients and 23,229 non-osteoarthritis controls matched for age and gender from health administrative data from British Columbia, Canada. Statistical analysis was used which adjusted the results for age, gender, socioeconomic status, body mass index, and several conditions known to be associated with CVD, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and Romano comorbidity score. Source:https://www.congress.eular.org/last_img read more

Study shows that overload training may alter firing in the bodys sympathetic

first_imgJun 27 2018With many recreational triathletes and runners ramping up their training in hopes of getting a personal best this summer, a new measure of stress in the body demonstrates that more isn’t better when it comes to endurance sport training.A University of Guelph study is the first to show that overload training may alter firing in the body’s sympathetic nerve fibers, which could hinder performance.”The theory behind overload training is that you train to the point of complete exhaustion, so that when you rest and recover, you will be able to perform at a higher level than before,” said Alexandra Coates, a PhD student in human health and nutritional science and lead author of the study.”But that may not be entirely correct.”The study revealed that muscle sympathetic nerve activity, which constricts the muscle’s blood vessels and indicates stress in the body, increased in over-trained athletes.”Athletes who followed a consistent training regime and didn’t have the same overload stress demonstrated improvements in their overall fitness and other markers of cardiovascular health,” said Coates.Published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, this is the first study to investigate the impact of overload training on muscle sympathetic nerve activity.Previous studies have measured indirect physiological factors, such as heart rate variability, but examining muscle nerve fibre activity provides a direct measure of the nervous system’s response, said Coates.The study involved recreational triathletes and cyclists. Over three weeks, one group did overload training (150 per cent of their regular training volume), and the other group continued with their regular training regimen.Coates measured the athletes’ sympathetic nerve activity, as well as heart rate variability and reflexive blood pressure regulation, before and after the three weeks.Related StoriesUTHealth researchers investigate how to reduce stress-driven alcohol useStress-induced changes in heart rate may impair auditory perceptionStudy explores the effects of near-miss experiences associated with 9/11 terrorist attacks”Measuring sympathetic nerve activity requires specialized equipment and trained technicians, so it is difficult to capture,” said Coates, who conducted the tests with Prof. Philip Millar, Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences.Millar runs one of the few labs in North America that can measure muscle sympathetic nerve activity.To measure that activity, a researcher inserts a micro-electrode needle into a nerve in the lower leg while the athlete lies still. This needle records how often the sympathetic nerve fires.In general, a high level of resting sympathetic activity will reflect an unhealthy state; very healthy athletes typically have low levels of sympathetic activity at rest.Coates and her team discovered sympathetic nerve activity increased in the overtrained athletes after the three-week period of overload training.”This was very interesting to us, because generally sympathetic nerve activity stays pretty consistent day to day, therefore we believe the athlete’s nervous systems were temporarily altered by the overtraining,” she said. “In this instance, it seems like the athletes overdid it.”The recreational athletes who followed their regular training showed no jump in nerve activity. Instead, they demonstrated improved cardiac reflex sensitivity and heart rate variability – signs of improved physical health, added Coates.”The athletes who did the overload training did not experience this same level of improved health,” she said. “They didn’t get worse, but they didn’t get any better either, and their sympathetic nerve activity went up. It appears the overtraining negated some of the beneficial effects of the regular training.” Source:https://news.uoguelph.ca/2018/06/u-of-g-study-finds-new-measure-for-stress-in-over-trained-athletes/last_img read more

Study Obese patients have high risk of infection and death after colon

first_img Source:https://journals.lww.com/ Jul 31 2018Do obese patients have a higher risk of infection and dying after colon surgery? In a study published in the August issue of Diseases of the Colon & Rectum, investigators from the University of Alabama at Birmingham sought to answer this question.While it has been long recognized that heavy patients are at higher risk of complications after surgery, Dr. Wahl and his colleagues wanted to find out whether there was a difference whether a patient was merely pudgy or downright obese. The authors used a large database, the 2011 to 2013 American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement database and evaluated over the 74,000 patients undergoing colorectal surgery. Among these, approximately 4% were underweight (defined as having a body mass index [BMI] < 18.5), 29 % were normal weight (BMI 18.5-24.9) ,33% were overweight (BMI 25-29.9), 20% were obesity class I (30-34.9), 8% obesity class II (BMI 35-39.9) and 6% to obesity class III (> 40 BMI). Compared to normal weight patients, the chance of getting a wound infection after surgery increased with each increasing class of obesity. In other words, patients in obesity class I were one and a half times more likely to get a wound infection, while those in obesity class III were twice as likely to get a wound infection compared to normal weight patients. In addition, very obese patients (obesity class III) were more likely to have severe infections, pneumonias, urinary tract infections, and to rupture their abdominal incisions compared to normal weight patients. The risk of death after surgery was also highest in this group. With the significant increase in overweight patients in our country, the findings of this study have significant financial implications for our healthcare system. For potential patients who may be undergoing surgery, this is one more way you can make surgery safer…by keeping off those extra pounds!last_img read more

Former Polish PM to lead European Parliaments research committee

Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Buzek was a member of ITRE from 2004 to 2009; in 2006, he was the author of the Parliament’s opinion on Framework Programme 7, the giant research funding package that started in 2007 and closed last year. In that capacity, he was the Parliament’s lead negotiator during the launch of the prestigious European Research Council, as well as a series of partnerships between public and private research bodies, called Joint Technology Initiatives (JTIs). “The main idea was to [channel] the money dedicated for research through industry. It was not very easy to explain such a point of view to my [academic] research community. … They hated me,” Buzek said, with tongue in cheek, in his first public speech as ITRE chair at an event yesterday to launch the second wave of JTIs. In Poland, Buzek was the architect of major reforms of the health care, pensions, and education systems, as well as an effort to decentralize government.Buzek was elected by acclamation on Monday—meaning that he was the only candidate for the post, following intense horse-trading between political groups and national delegations within the Parliament. The committee also decided that after 2 and a half years, former E.U. budget commissioner Janusz Lewandowski will take over from Buzek, who’s 74. Lewandowski is another high-profile, conservative member from Poland with substantial insider’s knowledge of the E.U. machinery.Buzek’s candidacy speaks to ITRE’s political importance in the European Parliament, Langer says. With 67 members, it is the third biggest committee in the chamber, after those responsible for foreign affairs and public health and environment issues. At this stage in his career, Buzek “would not pick up a secondary [role],” Langer says.For policy wonks, the list of ITRE members includes other familiar names, such as former industry commissioner Antonio Tajani from Italy; and ITRE alumna Marisa Matias, a left-wing member from Portugal; and German Christian-democrat Christian Ehler, who played an active role during Horizon 2020 negotiations. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe BRUSSELS—Following the E.U. elections in May, the European Parliament’s research committee has gotten itself a high-profile chair—at least in Brussels circles. Jerzy Buzek, a conservative politician from Poland and a former chemical engineering professor, presided over the European Parliament from July 2009 to January 2012 and was prime minister in his country from 1997 to 2001.As chair of the Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) Committee, Buzek will have a strong voice in the union’s science and innovation policies. In the lengthy negotiations over Horizon 2020, the bloc’s 7-year science funding program that has just started, ITRE has consistently pushed for a bigger science budget while cost-conscious member states tried to keep it down.Now that Horizon 2020 is under way, energy policy—one of Buzek’s pet subjects—will be higher on ITRE’s agenda, says Jerzy Langer, a Polish physicist who served as deputy science minister in 2005. Langer praises Buzek as an enthusiastic “gentleman professor” and a good listener with a knack for consensus. He is “the right person in [the] right moment at the right place,” Langer says. 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IPCC reaches finish line releases major climate change synthesis report

first_imgClimate change is taking hold and will bring worrying impacts—but there is still time to limit the damage. That, in a nutshell, is the message delivered by a new report that synthesizes the findings of three massive studies issued by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) over the past year. The Synthesis Report, released today at a meeting in Copenhagen, caps work on the fifth assessment of climate science and mitigation that the IPCC has completed since 1990.The report demonstrates that “we have the means to limit climate change,” said Rajendra Pachauri, chair of the IPCC, in a statement. “The solutions are many and allow for continued economic and human development. All we need is the will to change, which we trust will be motivated by knowledge and an understanding of the science of climate change.”The synthesis report wraps together highlights from the three earlier reports, on:climate science, released in September 2013; Although the new report’s “core findings aren’t new, [it] makes them clearer than ever, and they are worth underscoring,” said Bob Perciasepe, president of the Arlington, Virginia–based Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, in a statement. “The core message from the IPCC is the growing urgency of action. … The scientists have done their job. Now it’s up to governments to do theirs.”In particular, advocates for government action on climate change are focusing on a new round of international negotiations on some kind global climate pact. In December, nations meet in Peru to talk over some options, with the goal of arriving at a final agreement at a meeting in Paris in December 2015. It’s unclear, however, whether the new IPCC report can help overcome the political and economic obstacles that have blocked major movement of reducing emissions. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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The report is designed to make state-of-the-art thinking about climate change available to policy makers and the public.center_img Email potential climate impacts, and ways to adapt and reduced vulnerability, released in March 2014; and Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

What the microbes in your home say about you

first_img“It’s clever that they analyzed dust from above the door jamb,” says Linsey Marr, an environmental engineer at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg who wasn’t involved in the research. “It’s somewhere people never clean.”Residents also filled out a detailed questionnaire about their living habits and their house, including its age, the types of pets that lived there, and even how many smokers and vegetarians called it home. Then, the researchers used genetic analyses to identify the major groups of fungi and bacteria inhabiting the grunge.The fungi found inside homes were similar to those found outside, suggesting that these microbes probably wafted in from the environment and had little to do with household inhabitants. But the bacteria told a different story, says Noah Fierer, a microbial ecologist at the University of Colorado, Boulder. The types of bacteria found in interior dust samples largely depended on the ratio of male to female residents and on the presence of pets such as dogs and cats, he and his colleagues report online today in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. The genera found include human fecal and vaginal bacteria as well as those that live on human skin, Fierer says. Many of the fecal bacteria may have been borne aloft by air currents generated when toilets are flushed.Two types of skin-dwelling bacteria—those in the genera Corynebacterium and Dermabacter—and the fecal-associated genus Roseburia were more abundant in homes with more males. That may be because men typically are larger than women and therefore have more skin and shed more such bacteria, but the finding may also be driven by different hygiene practices among men and women. For instance, women harbor fewer bacteria on their skin and therefore shed them less often, possibly because of more frequent bathing or showering or a more prevalent use of skin care products.The researchers could also tell whether a home had a dog or a cat with 92% and 83% accuracy, respectively—a sign that pets have a highly predictable influence on the bacterial diversity in household dust. In homes with cats, 24 genera of bacteria were significantly more abundant than they were in homes without cats, the researchers found. In residences with dogs, the researchers found higher numbers of bacteria from 56 different genera.The results suggest that relatively simple tests of household dust collected from infrequently cleaned areas could help forensic scientists identify the sex of a home’s occupants—and maybe even its frequent visitors, the team says. Because such dust accumulates very slowly, however, it might be asking too much for such tests to identify occasional or one-time guests. The microbes in your home know all of your dirty little secrets. According to a new study, bacteria on your door frames can provide clues about how many males and females live in your house and what types of pets you have. Eventually, the findings could help forensic scientists develop new crime-solving techniques. “This is a powerful study,” says Rachel Adams, a microbial ecologist at the University of California, Berkeley, who was not involved in the new research. The findings nicely mirror results from other, smaller studies, she adds.To conduct the study, scientists asked residents of about 1200 homes scattered across the continental United States to swab dust that had accumulated in two places: their main external doorframe and an internal door frame in their home’s main living space. But they couldn’t swab it just any old way. Instead, they had to take their samples from the hard-to-reach and rarely disturbed upper surface of the trim above the door. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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When whales disappear so does their ecosystemsustaining poop

first_imgHumans have been bad for blue whales. As many as 350,000 of the giant mammals (pictured) once plied the oceans; now, only a few thousand are left. Although removing such creatures from ecosystems can have a host of effects, a new study draws attention to one in particular: There’s a lot less poop getting spread around the planet. In the research, published online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the scientists describe how losing these animals and other “megafauna” has upset a global cycle that once passed large amounts of nutrients like phosphorus from the ocean depths where large marine mammals like blue whales often feed into the sunlit surface waters where seabirds or migrating fish like salmon browse. As those fish swam back up the rivers where they were born or the birds returned to dry ground, the nutrients went with them, incorporated into their bodies or excreted, eventually feeding a host of terrestrial organisms. In turn, those animals’ own waste—and eventually decomposing bodies—helped spread the nutrients even further, fertilizing the interior of continents, the scientists say. In all, the researchers used a set of mathematical models to reveal that today animals only have about 6% of their former capacity to move such nutrients away from “hot spots” and across the oceans and land. Such a loss may continue to weaken ecosystem health, fisheries, and agriculture, leaving them less naturally productive than they might otherwise be. Protecting whales, migratory fish, and seabirds could make a difference in restoring, at least somewhat, the nutrient pathway, the scientists say.last_img read more

United States will miss Paris climate targets without further action study finds

first_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Although the Obama administration recently announced it will officially sign the climate change agreement forged in Paris nearly a year ago, making good on the deal’s promise to stem greenhouse gases could be a stretch, a new study concludes. Even if the United States implements all current and proposed policies, it would miss its 2025 target by as much as 1.5 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide per year—roughly 20% of the nation’s total emissions, according to the analysis published today in Nature Climate Change. The 2025 target is to cut greenhouse gases 26% to 28% below 2005 levels—down to between 4.5 billion and 5.5 billion metric tons.One big challenge to U.S. efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions comes this week, as a federal circuit court hears arguments over a challenge to the White House’s major climate change initiative, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) regulations targeting emissions from power plants. Even if the so-called Clean Power Plan survives the legal gantlet, however, the United States will still fall short in meeting its pledged reductions for 2025 without significant additional efforts, according to researchers at the federal government’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, California. Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)center_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe The United States could come closer to meeting the 2025 bar if the Clean Power Plan holds up, and U.S. policymakers stack on further measures. Those could include more electricity regulations, and stopping methane leaks from the pipelines and gas drilling. But even then, the United States would reach the goal only in the most optimistic scenario, the authors conclude, and is likely to miss it by half a billion metric tons or more.Still, the lead author is taking a glass-half-full view of the findings. “I see it as a best level effort, and hopefully with continued movement in the right direction, we’ll be able to get there,” says Jeffery Greenblatt, a greenhouse gas policy analyst in the lab’s Energy Analysis and Environmental Impacts Division. “If the U.S. fell a little short of their goal, I don’t think people would roundly criticize them.”Analysis goes deepIn the run-up to the Paris conference, most of the world’s countries, including the United States, submitted goals they would aim to reach, known as Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, or INDCs. These pledges offer the most detailed account of what countries say they will do to address climate change.The study is the newest and one of the most comprehensive analyses of the gap between the United States’s Paris promises and real policies. It’s also the first by federal scientists.The results are in the same ballpark as studies issued earlier by a host of think tanks, with a few important caveats. Closing the gap got a little tougher in the new study thanks largely to recent research showing that emissions of methane—a potent but short-lived greenhouse gas—are higher than previously thought. And the new study makes explicit the potential uncertainty for each policy, showing a range of possible outcomes rather than a single number.Karl Hausker, a policy analyst at the nonprofit World Resources Institute in Washington, D.C., says the new study shows that although the Barack Obama White House has made progress over 8 years, “there’s more the next president is going to have to do to get there.” But, he says, “this report does not say it’s impossible. This report does not say it’s technically infeasible or will destroy the economy.”Stephen Eule has a less optimistic outlook. The vice president for climate and technology at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for 21st Century Energy in Washington, D.C., says the new study reaffirms that the government will have to dig further for more emissions savings, including into industries such as cement and petrochemicals. “Really the third biggest emissions sector is the industrial sector. No one is talking about regulating the industrial sector. And I think I know why: because it’s a job killer,” Eule says.Clean Power Plan keyThe study underscores the importance of EPA’s Clean Power Plan for meeting the climate change promises. It’s expected to reduce emissions 240 million metric tons in 2025—nearly half the total cuts contained in current or proposed regulations. To help close the remaining gap, Greenblatt and his co-author point to potential reductions from an “enhanced” EPA rule that could add another 407 million metric tons in cuts. But the study offers few details of what the additional regulations would be.Meanwhile, the fate of the existing power plan remains in doubt. On 27 September, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit hears arguments in a case challenging the regulations, brought by a coalition of 27 states. The U.S. Supreme Court has put a hold on the EPA rules while the legal fight unfolds.The new study includes other strategies beyond current policies to help reach the 2025 goal: staunching methane leaks (121 million tons), reducing the use of refrigeration chemicals that are powerful greenhouse gases (67 million tons), and increasing efficiency standards for appliances and buildings (29 million tons each).Further steps could include pushing for more renewable energy; an aggressive cut in the use of coal and natural gas to make electricity; wider use of electric cars, biofuel, and hydrogen fuel; changes in farming practices; and putting a price on carbon pollution. But the study doesn’t say how much additional cuts would come from each of those actions.United States still climate leaderAlthough the U.S. path to meeting its promises is uncertain, it has made further progress than some other countries, says Bill Hare, a climate scientist and CEO of Climate Analytics, a nonprofit climate change consulting firm in Berlin. Hare’s company is part of Climate Action Tracker, a European consortium of private and government groups that analyze the climate change commitments of countries around the world.Policies in some other countries, including Australia and Canada, threaten to drive them further from their targets, he says. Others, such as India, are expected to see major increases in future emissions. By comparison, Hare says, the U.S. effort, “gets relatively close, within 500 megatons. So that’s not bad.”All told, the consortium estimates that current policies around the globe translate into a 3.6°C increase in average temperatures by 2100, compared with preindustrial levels, well above the 2°C threshold often noted by scientists, or the 1.5°C goal set out in Paris.Updated, 9/27/2016, 1:40p.m.: In the last paragraph, the predicted average increase in temperature by 2100 was misstated. It is 3.6°C, with an upper bound of 4.9°Clast_img read more

FDA experts offer a unanimous endorsement for pioneering gene therapy for blindness

first_img FDA experts offer a unanimous endorsement for pioneering gene therapy for blindness The panel experts faced questions about the durability of this eye therapy, the possibility that patients will need multiple treatments in order to preserve vision gains, the right age to use it and the use of a completely novel endpoint for the primary goal when standard visual acuity achievements fell far short of the goal on statistical significance.The experts, though, seemed generally impressed by the results—with some reservations about the endpoint—and several were open to treating very young patients. Spark is suggesting 3 and older, and CEO Jeff Marrazzo told me he was interested in the encouragement he heard to go even younger in some cases.While a formal approval is not guaranteed, it would be confounding for the agency to ignore the panel and the roster of patients who came forward to talk about being able to play, study and participate in the kind of day-to-day activities that had been denied them all their lives. An approval here could well be the first of many to come, as a group of players advance treatments that use a benign virus to introduce a corrected gene to fix a wide range of conditions.“It really came together in triangulating a bunch of points,” Marrazzo told me after the landmark vote came through, citing not just the patient testimony but also the physicians who were there to back up the application.Marrazzo isn’t offering any price yet, and won’t until the approval comes through. But it won’t be cheap. Estimates for one-time costs often hover around the $1 million mark in gene therapy. The CEO, who’s obviously thought quite a lot about it, says the clear path to ensuring access under the current rules that govern insurance points to a one-time charge per eye. It’s hard to offer an alternative model, he adds, given the kind of portability issues and payment models people have with their insurance coverage today—but he’s interested in exploring it and seeing what has to change to make that happen.Eighteen years ago, the gene therapy field was nearly shoved into oblivion after the death of a patient in a trial being conducted by Penn’s James Wilson. But over the past 10 years investigators, using some of the same technology that Wilson helped create, have mounted a massive comeback effort. In Spark’s case, the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia played a key role in pushing the early R&D work, giving the biotech a big leg up in the race to get the first such gene therapy into the U.S. market.There have been two other gene therapies in Europe, including GlaxoSmithKline’s Strimvelis. But they’ve been rarely used. The question now is how these treatments can get rooted in the U.S. market and then start to spread around the world.That day looks much closer than it has ever been.Katherine High, president and head of R&D at Spark Therapeutics said: “The clinical program for Luxturna includes patient data that show efficacy for up to four years on endpoints including bilateral multi-luminance mobility test (MLMT) score change and full-field light sensitivity threshold (FST) testing, with observation ongoing. We look forward to continuing to work with FDA as it completes its review of Luxturna.” The U.S. Food and Drug Administration/Flickr By John Carroll, Endpoints NewsOct. 13, 2017 , 11:25 AM This was no panacea. As the agency’s internal review made clear, voretigene neparvovec (or Luxturna) — which uses an adeno-associated viral vector — improved sight using the light levels measured for the primary endpoint, but fell far short of curing retinal dystrophy triggered by genetic RPE65 mutations. Improvement in vision is also limited by the number of viable retinal cells they have left at the time they’re treated, according to investigators. Read more… Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Reprinted from Endpoints News. Copyright 2017. Endpoints News reports and analyzes the top global biotech and pharmaceutical R&D news of the day. Sign up for its free reports at https://endpts.com The FDA is reviewing a novel gene therapy approach to treat a form of blindness. A pioneering AAV gene therapy from Spark Therapeutics took a giant stride toward an FDA approval yesterday as an outside panel of experts offered their support for getting this game-changing treatment into the market after looking over the data and hearing from some of the severely sight-impaired patients whose lives had been transformed by this therapy.The vote was 16 to 0 favoring the benefit-risk profile of the drug, backing an OK for voretigene neparvovec by the agency’s Cellular, Tissue and Gene Therapies Advisory Committee and providing a compelling reason for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to follow through with an historic first U.S. approval of a vector-delivered gene therapy.“Gene therapy has made my world so much more brighter,” said one young patient, who went on to describe how he could see the moon for the first time, go out at night, watch facial expressions, and basically live his life more normally instead of waiting for blindness to take over. And Christian Guardino talked about how the treatment four years ago saved his sight, a span of time when the darkness might well have closed in. Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

Genome editor CRISPRs latest trick Offering a sharper snapshot of activity inside

first_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe AGT CT A K. SUTLIFF/SCIENCE Cells are noisy places with lots of complex molecular conversations, and new strategies based on the genome editor CRISPR can record them. Airplane flight recorders and body cameras help investigators make sense of complicated events. Biologists studying cells have tried to build their own data recorders, for example by linking the activity of a gene of interest to one making a fluorescent protein. Their goal is to clarify processes such as the emergence of cancer, aging, environmental impacts, and embryonic development. A new cellular recorder that borrows from CRISPR, the revolutionary genome editing tool, now offers what could be a better taping device that captures data on DNA.In Science online this week, chemist David Liu and postdoc Weixin Tang, both of Harvard University, unveil two forms of what they call a CRISPR-mediated analog multievent recording apparatus, or CAMERA. In proof-of-concept experiments, they show in both bacterial and human cells how this tool can record exposure to light, antibiotics, and viral infection or document internal molecular events. “The study highlights the really creative ways people are harnessing discoveries in CRISPR to build these synthetic pathways,” says Dave Savage, a protein engineer at the University of California, Berkeley.Other investigators have created recording devices with CRISPR components, among them Timothy Lu of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. But Lu notes that his system was limited to bacteria, and compared with CAMERA it required “an order of magnitude” more cells to reliably record signals and had a much poorer signal-to-noise ratio. The new work, he says, “is really beautiful stuff” and has “a level of efficiency and precision that goes beyond what we did earlier.” (Lu this week plans to release a preprint describing a system similar to one version of CAMERA.) A new lens on cells One form of a research tool called CAMERA engineers cells to record signals triggered by various stimuli using the DNA of a “safe harbor” gene. The original use of CRISPR was to target and cut double-stranded DNA. Cells naturally repair these cuts, but in the process, they can introduce random, or stochastic, errors to a target gene, disabling it. Several groups have used these random errors as markers—or barcodes—to track how cells “differentiate” from one state to another. Liu sought a cleaner readout. “We wanted to shy away from that stochastic mixture. It’s much harder to interpret your findings.” His team also aimed to record not just whether a cell experienced a stimulus, but how strong it was and how long it lasted. To better understand cancer, for example, Liu says, “We’d love to be able to see whether cells in certain states listen to or ignore signals to stop growing.”One form of CAMERA takes advantage of a peculiarity of bacteria: the circular “plasmids” of DNA that float in their cytoplasm, copying themselves but tightly regulating their population size. The researchers introduced two “recorder” plasmids, R1 and R2, that settle at a stable ratio. They then fashioned a separate plasmid with genes for CRISPR’s components—a “guide” RNA (gRNA) that targets a DNA sequence and the Cas9 enzyme that cuts the double helix. Those genes are designed to kick into action, making the components that target R1 for destruction, when the cell experiences a specific stimulus. In one test, they equipped bacteria with an antibiotic-activated CAMERA. By sequencing the plasmids and documenting how the R1:R2 ratio had changed, they could tell how long the cells had been exposed to the drug.A second CAMERA makes use of a modified Cas9 that doesn’t cut the double helix and is linked to an enzyme that chemically switches cytosine, one of four DNA bases, into another one, thymine. To record an event, the gRNA shuttles this so-called base editor to a “safe harbor” gene, whose DNA can be altered without harming the cell. Again, the researchers tailor the system to respond to specific signals. As a test, they stimulated human cells to activate the Wnt signaling pathway, which plays a role in the development of embryos and in cancer. CAMERA turned on in the presence of Wnt activity, inscribing a record of those signals in the safe harbor gene.​CAMERA works in samples that contain as few as 10 cells, nearing the goal of recording the actions of a single cell. “If you’re doing the activity map of the brain, each cell is a different story,” notes Harvard geneticist George Church, whose own lab has developed CRISPR-based recording devices. “Ideally you’d have a nice single molecule ticker tape recording of a DNA sequence that you could read off and it tells you what was happening in each cell over the function of time.”CAMERA has other potentially useful features, including the ability to erase its recorded information, with drugs that “reset” the plasmid ratio to their baseline, for example. CAMERA also can record several different signals at the same time or one after the other. But for CAMERA to prove its worth in the crowded biological recording field, researchers have to show that it can work when engineered into the cells of an animal—not simply in the cell line used in Liu’s Wnt experiment. “The real power is what’s going to happen next,” Savage says. “Right now, the killer app is still to come.” CellgRNABase editorBase editorcenter_img Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Russell Kightley/Science Source By Jon CohenFeb. 15, 2018 , 2:00 PM Genome editor CRISPR’s latest trick? Offering a sharper snapshot of activity inside the cell The gRNA shuttles the base editor to the target on the safe harbor gene.A cell’s response to a stimulus leads plasmids to produce guide RNA (gRNA) and a base editor.Base editor alters DNA, recording cell’s response to stimulus.StimulusgRNACytidine deaminaseCas9 nickaseGGC CT A Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

Slowmotion video reveals killer whiplash butcherbirds use to take down prey

first_imgWhen the team analyzed the shaking motions, they found that the shrikes could exert up to 6 gs of accelerative force. By comparison, humans in low-speed, rear-end car crashes can experience head accelerations of 2 to 12 gs, enough to cause whiplash. On a mouse’s smaller spine, these forces can be fatal.The results could help explain how shrikes—and other species like snakes and lizards—tackle prey larger than they are, by using the weight of their prey’s own bodies against them. For now, add another brutal move to the butcherbird’s vicious arsenal.*Correction, 5 September, 2:25 p.m.: This story has been updated to note that the loggerhead shrikes in this study were observed catching prey up to 40% of their body mass. By Frankie SchembriSep. 4, 2018 , 7:01 PM Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Email For animals unlucky enough to run into a carnivorous songbird known as the shrike, a quiet scurry through the woods can quickly morph into a dance with death. Loggerhead shrikes (Lanius ludovicianus), aka butcherbirds, impale their prey on spiky plants or barbed wire before delivering a death blow to the neck with their hooked beaks. Now, a new study shows how the birds can take down lizards and mice with body masses up to 40% of their own. Scientists used a high-speed video camera to film 28 shrikes attacking large vertebrate prey at a zoological research center on San Clemente Island in California. When the researchers examined the slowed-down footage, they found that in nearly all fatal attacks, the shrikes would first latch onto the necks of their prey, vigorously shaking them up and down.By using their prey’s neck as a pivot to whip them in wavelike motion, the shrikes could cause fatal damage to cervical vertebrae and spinal cords, the researchers report today in Biology Letters.center_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Slow-motion video reveals ‘killer whiplash’ butcherbirds use to take down preylast_img read more

This famous tortoise lived for 100 years His genome may reveal how

first_img Email Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe This famous tortoise lived for 100 years. His genome may reveal how he did it However, the study offers no insight into why George remained lonesome to the end, unable to father any offspring. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Lonesome George, the Galápagos tortoise who became famous as the sole survivor of his species, may have had a souped-up immune system, top-flight DNA repair, and increased resistance to cancer, according to an analysis of his genome.George, the last member of the tortoise species that formerly lived on the Galápagos island of Pinta, was about 100 when he died in 2012. Researchers have now sequenced his genome and that of a giant tortoise from a different species that inhabits the Aldabra Atoll in the Indian Ocean. The results, reported today in Nature Ecology and Evolution, divulge some clues about why the reptiles can live so long.For one thing, the immune systems of both tortoises appeared to be anything but sluggish. Mammals harbor one copy of a gene that enables immune cells to punch holes in invading or abnormal cells; the two giant tortoises carried 12 copies. George and his giant counterpart also sported a version of a DNA-fixing enzyme that may be more efficient, one of the signs that they are particularly good at mending genome damage. Duplications of two genes that may quell tumor growth, along with other genomic differences from mammals, suggest the tortoises may have evolved stronger defenses against cancer, which older animals are susceptible to. Other turtles share some of these adaptations, but some are unique to the giant species. By Mitch LeslieDec. 3, 2018 , 11:00 AM JAD DAVENPORT/National Geographic Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

Podcast Can we inherit trauma from our ancestors and the secret to

first_imgX. Liu et al., Science 2019 Can we inherit trauma from our ancestors? Studies of behavior and biomarkers have suggested the stress of harsh conditions or family separations can be passed down, even beyond one’s children. Journalist Andrew Curry joins host Sarah Crespi to discuss a possible mechanism for this mode of inheritance and mouse studies that suggest possible ways to reverse the effects.Spiky, pulsating ferrofluids are perpetual YouTube stars. The secret to these dark liquid dances is the manipulation of magnetic nanoparticles in the liquid by external magnets. But when those outside forces are removed, the dance ends. Now, researchers writing in Science have created permanently magnetic fluids that respond to other magnets, electricity, and pH by changing shape, moving, and—yes—probably even dancing. Sarah Crespi talks to Thomas Russell of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst about the about the applications of these squishy, responsive magnets.This week’s episode was edited by Podigy.Listen to previous podcasts.About the Science Podcast[Image: X. Liu et al., Science 2019; Music: Jeffrey Cook]last_img read more

DEF concerned about TVET and vending in Roseau

first_imgShareTweetSharePinAchille Chris Joseph, Executive Director, DEF. File photoPresident of the Dominica Employers Federation (DEF) Achille Joseph has raised concerns about what he says is the non-functioning Technical Vocational Educational and Training Council (TVET) in Dominica.Joseph told a pre-budget discussion at Fort Young Hotel hosted by the Dominica Business Forum that the non functioning of TVET is impacting the business community.“We have the issue of the Technical Vocational and Education program in Dominica which has been lacking tremendously which has been championed by BCAD [the Builders and Contractors Association of Dominica] and we can not move forward in rolling out more technical competences as well as the CVQs because the TVET Council in Dominica basically does not function and for us to have our CVQs in Dominica, the council must vet the CVQs accessors as well as the institution doing the training,” he stated.He explained that if BTC wants to train people to write the CVQs, BTC can not do that until they are vetted by the TVET council.“The TVET council, I don’t know if it has a spirit or a bad ghost but it has not been functioning and if there is a TVET council appointed for the 2019 period I can tell you it does not meet; it does not function and as a result, the business community can not have people certified for their technical competences,” Joseph explained.Joseph added that the issue of vending in Roseau is a matter of concern.“Another issue that the private sector has been grappling with and I use the word grappling, because it’s been a long time; that has to do with two major issues in the city of Roseau. The vendors who by law, selling fresh produce are supposed to be in the confines of the Roseau market by law, are all over the place on the side walks in Roseau, especially right in front of retail operations, retailing products at prices that compete directly with the retail operations,” the DEF official stated.He said they [DEF] have had meetings with DEXIA and DEXIA has admitted its role in confining these people to the Roseau market but that is proving very difficult.last_img read more

DRT orders Nirav Modi his firms and companies to repay debts of

first_img Taking stock of monsoon rain Post Comment(s) Singapore court freezes over Rs 44 crore in bank accounts of Nirav Modi kin Four bank accounts of Nirav Modi, family frozen in Switzerland Advertising Advertising The order was passed by Deepak Thakkar, the Presiding Officer, DRT in Pune, who also hold the additional charge of DRT-I, Mumbai and DRT, Aurangabad. The order was passed in connection with two out of the three cases filed by PNB at DRT-I, Mumbai against Nirav Modi, Nirav Modi Firms and Nirav Modi companies. One more case filed by PNB against Modi and his firms in connection with debt of about Rs 1700 crore is pending before the DRT-I, Mumbai.Modi is currently lodged at Wandsworth prison in south-west London in United Kingdon since his arrest on March 19 this year by the Scotland Yard police in connection with the nearly USD 2 billion PNB fraud and money laundering case. His extradition proceedings are going in the UK Westminister Court.Nirav Modi along with his uncle Mehul Choksi is alleged to have siphoned off Rs 13,500 crore from the coffers of PNB through fraudulent issuance of letters of undertaking and letters of credit. Best Of Express After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan More Explained In January 2018, the PNB had detected massive fraudulent activities allegedly perpetrated by Nirav Modi, Nirav Modi Firms and Companies. Complaints have been filed by PNB at the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) in this regard. Ministry of Corporate Affairs has directed investigation by “Serious Fraud Investigation Office” into the affair of the “Nirav Modi Group”.Investigations by CBI and ED have found that Modi diverted a large part of these funds to family members and for personal purposes. ED has already attached properties worth over Rs 1873 crore belonging to Modi while assets worth Rs 489.75 crore have been seized. The attachments include assets worth Rs 961.49 crore located in Hong Kong, Switzerland, UK, USA, Singapore and UAE.In the two cases before DRT, lawyers Aditya Malhotra, Adrish Majumdar of “Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas – Advocates” represented PNB, while no lawyer appeared in defence of Nirav Modi and his firms and companies during the hearings in Mumbai and Pune.PNB versus Stellar Diamonds and 15 othersThe case of PNB versus Stellar Diamonds and 15 others including Nirav Modi and his family members their partnership firms was registered on September 9, 2018 and came up for hearing before DRT’s presiding Deepak Thakkar in Pune on July 16, 2019. Written by Chandan Haygunde | Updated: July 7, 2019 5:06:55 am Nirav Modi, Nirav modi jail, Arthur Road prison, arthur road jail, nirav modi jail, nirav modi mumbai jail, nirav modi cell. cell in mumbai prison, high security jail, indian express Modi is currently lodged at Wandsworth prison in South-West London in United Kingdon since his arrest in March in connection with the PNB fraud and money laundering which nearly amounts to USD 2 billion. (File photo)The Debts Recovery Tribunal (DRT) on Saturday passed an order directing diamond merchant Nirav Deepak Modi, Nirav Modi Firms and Nirav Modi companies to repay debts to the tune of Rs 7,300 crores to the Punjab National Bank (PNB). The order further stated, M/s Stellar Diamonds, M/s Solar Exports, M/s Diamond R US, all Mumbai based companies, their partners and beneficiaries, Firestar International Limited and Firestar Diamond International Private Limited (both companies belonging to Nirav Modi group), are directed to pay PNB either jointly and severally the aggregate sum of Rs 7029,06,87,950.65 with interest 14.30 percent per annum from June 30, 2018 till payment.Two PNB officials nailedThe order also nailed PNB officials for their alleged involvement in the fraud. “The present lawsuit narrates the modus operandi of Nirav Modi and others made fraudulent and unauthorised transactions with the applicant (PNB)….. and connivance with the applicant’s employees Gokul Nath Shetty, Deputy Manager and Manoj Hanumant Kharat, Single Window Operator. Nirav Modi enjoyed the credit facilities by unlawful means, conspiracy and deceit,” it is stated.“Nirav Modi managed the delinquent employees and obtained (from PNB) 150 letters of undertaking (LOUs) in favour of Nirav Modi Firms without any sanction or approval of requisite authority. The fraud was systematically perpetrated in breach and open defiance of the SWIFT system and Core Banking System…….The NOSTRO account of the applicant (PNB) was misused and misutilised to settle the buyer’s credit by making payment of the previously issued aunthorised LOUs…No entry was made in the Trade finance Module of the Core Banking System and therefore the fraud went undetected. The fraudulent transaction was circulated between Nirav Modi Firms and Nirav Modi Companies,” as stated in the order.In the order, the presiding officer also stated details from a press release on G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan held on June 28 and 29, 2019 wherein the Indian government had strongly urged the global community to fight the menace of fugitive economic offenders running away. “The issue addressed at G20 summit by the Indian government was pointing of finger at Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi,” the order stated.PNB versus Firestar Diamond International Private Limited and othersThe second case of PNB versus Firestar Diamond International Private Limited and others was registered on November 19, 2019. It came up for hearing before presiding officer Thakkar at DRT, Pune on April 24, 2019. Oriental Bank of Commerce, Gurgaon, Bank of India, Bandra (East), Bank of Baroda, Alkapuri, Baroda, Bank of Maharashtra, Lokmangal, Shivajinagar, Pune, UCO Bank, Kolkatta, Corporation Bank, Pandeshwar, Mangalore, United Bank of India, Kolkatta, are also among the applicants along with PNB in this case. In this case filed under sections of the Recovery of Debts due to Bank and Financial Institutions Act, 993, PNB had sought an order for recovery of debt to the amount of about Rs 7029.06 crores, allegedly obtained by fraudulent means.Passing an order in this case, Thakkar stated that firm “M/s Stellar Diamonds”, its partners, trustees and beneficiaries including Nirav Deepak Modi, Ami Nirav Modi, Neeshal Deepak Modi, Deepak Keshavlal Modi, Nehal Deepak Modi, Rohin Nirav Modi, Ananya Nirav Modi, Apasha Nirav Modi, all residents of Grosvenor House, Peddar Road, Mumbai and Purvi Mayank Mehta of Atlas Apartment, Mehta Road, Mumbai, are directed to pay PNB either jointly and severally the aggregate sum of Rs 2309,04,08,900.40 with interest 14.30 percent per annum from June 30, 2018 till payment.The order also stated that firm “M/s Solar Exports”, its partners, trustees and beneficiaries including Nirav Deepak Modi, Ami Nirav Modi, Neeshal Deepak Modi, Deepak Keshavlal Modi, Nehal Deepak Modi, Rohin Nirav Modi, Ananya Nirav Modi, Apasha Nirav Modi, all residents of Grosvenor House, Peddar Road, Mumbai and Purvi Mayank Mehta of Atlast Apartment, Mehta Road, Mumbai, are directed to pay PNB either jointly and severally the aggregate sum of Rs 2328,77,10,253.79 with interest 14.30 percent per annum from June 30, 2018 till payment.The order also stated that firm “M/s Diamond R US”, its partners, trustees and beneficiaries including Nirav Deepak Modi, ANM Enterprises Private Limited Company, NDM Enterprises Private Limited Company in Mumbai, are directed to pay PNB either jointly and severally the aggregate sum of Rs 2391,15,68,796.46 with interest 14.30 per cent per annum from June 30, 2018 till payment. Mehul Choksey had retired from the partnership of this firm on May 10, 2000. PNB scam: Singapore HC orders freeze on bank account owned by Nirav Modi’s sister LiveKarnataka floor test: Will Kumaraswamy’s 14-month-old govt survive? Passing an order in this case today, Thakkar stated that Firestar Diamond International Private Limited, Nirav Modi, Firestar International Limited and Radashir Jewellery Company Private Limited are directed to applicants (PNB and other banks) either jointly or severally a sum of Rs 232.15 crores with pendent lite and future interest 16.20 percent per annum from July 27,2018 till payment. Modi and his firms had obtained loans from PNB and other banks by mortgaging properties. As per the order, Firestar Diamond International Private Limited is “granted liberty to redeem the mortgage properties within the period of three months from the date hereof, failing which the applicants shall become entitled to put the mortgaged properties for sale…” Advertising Virat Kohli won’t have a say in choosing new coach Related News last_img read more

NIH director expresses concern but offers no new policy on sexual harassment

first_img NIH director expresses concern but offers no new policy on sexual harassment for grantees By Jocelyn KaiserSep. 18, 2018 , 3:35 PM National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Francis Collins in Bethesda, Maryland, yesterday ended a monthslong silence on the topic of sexual harassment in biomedical research, announcing plans to beef up procedures in NIH’s own laboratories. But the agency did not reveal any new policies to sanction NIH-funded investigators who commit sexual harassment at universities, a step that some researchers and some members of Congress would like him to take.Sexual harassment is “morally indefensible” and “unacceptable,” Collins said in a written statement. “Personally, I find this to be a matter of extreme importance,” he added in a follow-up interview with ScienceInsider. But he says the agency’s hands are tied because of “legal reasons.” In particular, Collins says the agency can’t move quickly to require that institutions report sexual harassment findings to the agency, as the National Science Foundation (NSF) plans to do. Collins’s comments come after several high-profile cases of sexual harassment in academic science. The incidents have inspired new policies by scientific organizations, including AAAS (publisher of ScienceInsider), which this week announced a new process for revoking fellow status for those found guilty of sexual or other misconduct. Tomorrow, NSF is expected to finalize a policy issued earlier this year that would require universities to tell NSF once they have completed an investigation into allegations of harassment by an NSF grantee and whenever they place a grantee on administrative leave. (ScienceInsider’s report on the NSF policy can be found here.)  Email Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe NIH’s main lever for preventing sexual harassment, according to the agency, is a provision of a 1972 education law, called Title IX, that prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender by any educational institution receiving federal funds. In abiding by those provisions, Collins said, universities are required to take steps to ensure “a harassment-free environment.” Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Francis Collins Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country National Institutes of Health NIH also requires that institutions report whether an NIH-funded grantee has been put on administrative leave or removed from their position for any reason. If NIH is not satisfied with the university’s subsequent decision to replace the grantee, the statement explains, “we then have the option to suspend or terminate the grant.” The proposed NSF policy also noted that the agency could take “unilateral action [including] suspension or termination of the award,” but NSF has since clarified that this may not necessarily mean an investigator found guilty of sexual harassment will be removed as principal investigator of a grant.Collins says NIH can’t automatically cut off funding to individual grantees accused of or found guilty of sexual harassment because the funding goes to the institution. Transferring a grant instead of ending it can be preferable to “preserve the science,” NIH notes, and to allow other staff, including possibly even the person who was harassed, to continue with their research.Last month, Senator Patty Murray (D–WA) and Representative Rosa DeLauro (D–CT) criticized NIH’s approach to sexual harassment. In a 6 August letter to Collins, the lawmakers wrote that “the agency has largely failed to take steps to hold its awardee institutions accountable for fostering safe workplace environments regarding sexual harassment.” On 31 August NIH acknowledged that the agency has not sanctioned any institutions for failing to certify that they will comply with the civil rights policies.Its response to Murray and DeLauro also revealed that NIH has spent $2 million over the past 5 years on dozens of settlements involving cases of sexual harassment. (These incidents presumably occurred in NIH’s intramural program, although the letter does not specify that.) NIH’s plans for its intramural program announced yesterday include an updated policy on sexual harassment, a simpler reporting process and plans for a survey.Collins told ScienceInsider that no scientist has been suspended or barred from receiving NIH funding because of sexual harassment. NIH can refer allegations involving grantees to the Inspector General (IG) for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), NIH’s parent agency. But Collins said that office is overwhelmed with Medicare fraud and other wrongdoing and doesn’t have the “bandwidth” to deal with NIH matters. The agency wants Congress to shift $5 million from its pending 2019 budget to the IG to help it pursue such cases and other transgressions, such as breaches of peer review and intellectual property theft.Requiring institutions to report sexual harassment findings to NIH would be a first step toward better oversight. But NIH can’t immediately follow NSF’s example, as Collins explained in a second statement released on 19 September. Unlike the standalone NSF, NIH—as part of HHS—must follow the Administrative Procedure Act, which requires a formal rulemaking process to make such a policy change. “That is why at the moment, we’re not in sync,” Collins says. Such a rulemaking, which involves the White House Office of Management and Budget, would take at least a year and “can readily get snagged along the way,” he adds.Asked why NIH can’t go ahead with such a rulemaking, Collins said, “We are actively exploring that possibility.” He also expects to discuss a new rule that would cover all research agencies as part of a plan work with NSF director France Córdova on harmonizing policies. Collins’s initial statement has gotten a mixed reception. “I don’t want to see the man found guilty of viciously retaliating against me at a national meeting with new trainees,” says neuroscientist BethAnn McLaughlin at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, who is circulating an online petition that calls on NIH to take away training, travel and grant money, and study section services from any investigator found guilty of sexual misconduct. “It terrifies me.”Benjamin Corb, director of public affairs at the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in Rockville, Maryland, says, “I think the community is looking for more, and rightly so.” He noted that the society recently sent a comment to one of NIH’s institutes calling for new policies. “I recognize it’s complicated for the NIH to work through,” he adds.Tracy Costello, chair of the National Postdoctoral Association, was more positive about yesterday’s statement. “I think NIH is moving in the right direction. … I think it’s a very complicated problem and I don’t know that there’s one quick answer,” says Costello, whose group is worried that a federal agency might take punitive action before an institution completes its investigation.Murray is also waiting to see what happens next. “I’m encouraged that [NIH] has acknowledged that it needs to do more, but we know the devil is in the details,” she told ScienceInsider. “So I’ll be watching closely to make sure they take serious action that has a real impact.”*Update, 20 September, 3:25 p.m.: This story has been updated to correct the description of the legal restrictions on NIH policymaking and to include a statement NIH released on 19 September.last_img read more

RTI activists murder Special CBI court orders police protection for four witnesses

first_img Jharkhand court drops ‘donate Quran’ condition for bail to Ranchi woman over offensive post Two NPCC officers held for seeking bribe to clear bills: CBI By Express News Service |Ahmedabad | Published: July 18, 2019 2:57:07 am Bhagwandas Dhakan, who had been re-examined in January 2018, expressed fear of being attacked by the accused or their family members. The court extended his police protection until pronouncement of the judgment.Sources said an assessment would be made and depending on the threat perception, further extension may be granted to the four key witnesses. Salve hails verdict, says ICJ protected Jadhav from being executed RTI activist's murder: Special CBI court orders police protection for four witnesses The court had on July 11 convicted former BJP MP Dinu Solanki and six others and sentenced them to life imprisonment for the murder.A special CBI court on Wednesday ordered police protection for four crucial witnesses who had deposed during the trial in the murder of RTI activist Amit Jethwa in 2010. The court had on July 11 convicted former BJP MP Dinu Solanki and six others and sentenced them to life imprisonment for the murder. ‘Truth, justice have prevailed’: PM Modi on Kulbhushan Jadhav verdict He said he had also requested the court to order that appropriate legal action be taken against the person who issued the threat. On July 12, Judge Dave granted “full police protection till July 17”. On Wednesday, the court granted a further extension in the period of protection until January 2020.Rama Solanki used to work for the former MP Dinu Solanki at his farmhouse in Harmadiya. By his own submission, Rama was investigated and cross-examined as a witness and his statement taken on May 16, 2013.Dharmendragiri Balugiri Goswami, another key witness and resident of Una, was among 26 witnesses re-examined by the special CBI court. Goswami said, “It was at my hotel, Hotel Comfort Inn, where the murder was plotted. I have had police protection since the re-trial was ordered in 2017.” Goswami was re-examined in 2018. As per court records, on February 1, 2018, after completion of the first part of his cross-examination, Goswami informed the court that his wife had telephoned him and told him that somebody had kidnapped their son.However, his wife later informed him that their son had returned home. Following this incident, judge Dave said, “…if police protection to the witness and his family is extended till pronouncement and final judgment, it would serve the purpose and if the witness intends police protection even for further time, he may approach this court for further relief.” Best Of Express center_img Advertising Advertising Legal sources said that the period of protection given to witnesses expired the day the court pronounced its judgment, following which Special CBI Judge KM Dave chose to extend protection, considering the perception of threat to the witnesses.Of the four witness, main witness Rama Haja Solanki has been granted protection until January 20, 2020. Two others, Dharmen-dragiri Goswami and Bhagwan-das Himmatbhai Dhakan, have been granted protection until August 16 this year, while advocate Anand Yagnik, a star independent witness, has been granted protection for four weeks.Speaking to The Indian Express, Rama Solanki said, “I have had police protection for the past four years. On the day of the judgment (July 11), a man called at 6.48 pm , merely hours after the court pronounced its verdict, threatening to kill me.” He said the man claimed to be calling from Surendranagar. “The next day, I filed an application at the Kodinar police station as well as before the court seeking police protection.” CBI raids: Opposition MPs write to PM accusing govt of ‘intimidation’ and ‘coercion’ CBI searches former Samajwadi Party MP Ateeq Ahmad’s premises in UP Related News Post Comment(s)last_img read more