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Watch out for Borussia Dortmund this season in Europe

first_imgWe take a closer look at the many virtues that this Borussia Dortmund side has this season, they could compete for everything in Europe.The Borussia Dortmund board of directors have been doing things right at least for the last decade, they nearly conquered Europe back in 2013 with the guidance of Jürgen Klopp.They were in a small hiatus for a few years, but this season was key for them to get refreshed by many new talents and many well-established players are also responding very well to the challenge as Borussia Dortmund takes the Bundesliga by storm and does in the same fashion they have always done it historically.This is a squad that stays dynamic during the whole season, they always strive to practice the most offensive football one could ever hope for and they just keep discovering new talents every single year.The Dortmund supporters weren’t ever worried after Ousmane Dembele left to play for Barcelona, because the club’s scouting system is one of the best in the world and they quickly found a replacement who is even better than the Frenchman.We are going to talk about three key players who might transform this Borussia Dortmund side into a serious threat for any Champions League opponent they face this season.#SquadGoals pic.twitter.com/77NFtNAk8o— Borussia Dortmund 🇺🇸🇬🇧 (@BlackYellow) October 6, 2018Marco ReusBorussia Dortmund’s absolute leader, a man who has never left the institution that has always supported him when things got heavy for him.Reus has struggled with nasty injuries in the past, one even made him miss the World Cup in 2014 and prevented him to become a World Cup champion.The winger seems to be living a second youth before he turns 30 and he understands his role as the club’s frontman who should be good enough to take them very far in all competitions this season.He is the perfect role model for the generation of players who are also coming forward this season for the club, Marco Reus deserves to finally get this recognition as the leaders that he is.Paco Alcácer leads the Bundesliga in goals.He’s only played 81 minutes. 😱😱 pic.twitter.com/kOfGA2WHpn— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) October 8, 2018Paco AlcacerWhen Spanish striker Paco Alcacer first arrived in FC Barcelona last season, he suffered from the same problems that other strikers go through when they compete every day against Lionel Messi or Luis Suarez.Jadon SanchoMerson believes Arsenal should sign Sancho Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho might be the perfect player to play for the Gunners, according to former England international Paul Merson.The Valencia CF product wasn’t able to keep up with any of both players and decided to leave, he took the offer from Borussia Dortmund and it didn’t really take him a long time to adapt.Today in the Bundesliga, Alcacer is the undisputed top scorer so far in the season and he was exactly the kind of striker that the German club had been craving for such a long time.With already 6 goals in the competition, there is no doubt that Paco Alcacer will finish his season with the highest goal-tally of his career.The #Bundesliga after 7 MatchdaysTop scorer:▪️@paco93alcacer: ⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️▪️Minutes played: 8⃣1⃣Most assists:▪️@Sanchooo10: 👟👟👟👟👟👟▪️ Minutes played: 2⃣1⃣4⃣#bvb pic.twitter.com/OlbmdFm0pc— Stefan Buczko (@StefanBuczko) October 6, 2018Jadon SanchoArguably the greatest discovery that Borussia Dortmund has done since Robert Lewandowski first arrived at their doorstep, English lad Jadon Sancho is the biggest sensation in European football right now alongside French wonder kid Kylian Mbappé.The Golden Boy award will be disputed by the PSG star and this young player who already has 7 assists in all competition for Borussia Dortmund, which are more than any other player on the continent.Sancho just was called-up to play for his country in the next international break, it’s a dream come true for a player who is still too young and needs to take his career slowly.There are no guarantees that manager Gareth Southgate will give him the first minutes for England, but traveling with the squad so young is already a great achievement for the kid.Emotional. Inspirational. Unbelievable.Going into international break on a high note 🙌📰 https://t.co/m7qiJAH0Rh pic.twitter.com/dvfHEQE3Mx— Borussia Dortmund 🇺🇸🇬🇧 (@BlackYellow) October 8, 2018Which other players would you add to Borussia Dortmund’s best this season? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.last_img read more

Sterling praises Sanchos work ethic

first_imgRaheem Sterling paid tribute to Jadon Sancho’s work ethic and insists he’s unsurprised on how quickly the teenager’s adapted at EnglandThe 18-year-old winger made his international debut for the senior England team in Friday’s goalless draw at Croatia by replacing Sterling for the final 12 minutes.Despite the short amount of time on the pitch, Sancho left observers impressed with his seamlessly transition into the Three Lions squad.But Sterling, who trained alongside the youngster at City before his switch to Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund, insists that it is of no surprise to him.“He is a really good talent and someone I’ve thought highly of since the first time I saw him at Manchester City when he was training with us in pre-season,” said Sterling, according to the Irish Mirror.“I thought highly of him – his work ethic and what he does with the ball. I know him really well and he’s someone that is really modest but when he’s on the field he wants to express his ability.”Sterling also backed Sancho’s shock decision to leave for Germany last year.“For someone so young to back themselves to go abroad is a credit to them,” he added.“To go abroad so young and back yourself, that shows a lot about the person. He could have taken the easy route and stayed at City but he saw himself developing better.Jadon SanchoMerson believes Arsenal should sign Sancho Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho might be the perfect player to play for the Gunners, according to former England international Paul Merson.“That’s what it’s about in football – you have to judge your own situation and he did that perfectly and all credit to him.“He has knuckled down in Germany and, when you’re that age, it’s probably something you need. To have that seclusion and be by yourself a bit and to concentrate solely on football. I’m really happy for him.”After Friday’s match, the England squad had a break at the team hotel with Sterling and Sancho getting involved in a video game showdown between Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain.Playing as Juventus, Sancho led the Italian side to a 3-1 win over Sterling’s PSG – which the latter certainly didn’t enjoy come the full-time whistle.We all know that friend 👋😂🤣#Sterling #Sancho #FIFA #FIFA19[🎥IG/sanchooo104] pic.twitter.com/eraKZXU4WY— Xtra Minute (@XtraminuteTV) October 14, 2018last_img read more

Former Arsenal legend talks about Bob Wilson

first_imgFor David Seaman, the chance he had to work together with Wilson was perfect and praised the work of his former teammateEnglish goalkeeper David Seaman played with Arsenal in the English Premier League from 1990 to 2003.And with the Gunners, he worked closely with former footballer Bob Wilson.“What makes Bob special is that he used to give you confidence in training, so you didn’t have to go and play well in a game,” Seaman told the club’s official website.Daniel Fark, Norwich City, Premier LeagueDaniel Farke, From mid-table in the Championship to the Premier League Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Norwich City manager, Daniel Farke, has taken his team from the middle of the table in the English Championship to play with the big boys in the Premier League.“In training, he would do exercises where you would have to make two or three worldie saves, ones that really turn a game or are really special.”“But what he used to do is, if you made one of those worldie saves in the first two or three minutes, he’d say ‘Right, out,’ and you’d go out of that session feeling so full of confidence because you’d make this great save,” he added.“That was a specialty of Bob’s because you could make that worldie and then the next ball that comes in you could mess it up and as a goalkeeper you will remember the one that you’ve messed up and that would get you down, but Bob knew ‘Right, you’ve made a great save, out you go,’ and you’d keep that confidence.”last_img read more

Honor 8X phone looks glorious in shifting purplyblue finish at CES 2019

first_img Honor View 20’s hypnotic colors will make your jaw drop Phantom blue Honor 8X is pure eye candy The Honor View 20 may be Huawei’s only new phone at CES 2019 (and, in fact, the only satisfying phone of the entire show), but the company threw in a bonus device. Or rather, a bonus color for the Honor 8X: Phantom Blue. Take a look at the photos below — it’s pretty.What makes the color “phantom” is the shifting quality of its finish, which changes from blue to purple and pink when it catches the light. It’s a technique that Huawei and other Chinese rivals have used on phones in 2018 to eye-catching effect. The Huawei P20 Pro was one particularly successful example, with a similar color gradient to the new Honor 8X shade. $174 Now playing: Watch this: Post a comment 2:58 CES 2019: See all of CNET’s coverage of the year’s biggest tech show.Dazzling Honor View 20 has you in its thrall at CES 2019 14 Photos Mentioned Above Huawei Honor 8X (black) CES 2019 0 Huawei Honor 8Xcenter_img See it Preview • The Honor 8X is like a super-cheap iPhone XS Max, in all the best ways Dazzling Honor View 20 phone will dazzle you Phones Tags 28 Photos Huawei has sold 6 million Honor 8X phones, the company announced ahead of CES 2019.The Honor View 20, which we also saw here at CES, comes in Phantom Red and Phantom Blue, which are equally mesmerizing. See what I mean in the gallery below. Huawei Share your voice CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Colors may not seem like the last thing people should care about when buying a new phone, but bright hues and eccentric finishes are one surefire way for companies to grab buyers’ attention in a crowded marketplace. While Huawei is struggling to sell its phones in an increasingly hostile global environment that questions the company’s close relationship with the Chinese government, it nevertheless continues to push phones in friendly markets and innovate on features, software and design.last_img read more

Yuvraj Singhs exgirfriend Kim Sharma flashes her belly button piercing in bikini

first_imgHowever, Kim is not the only actress Yuvraj was linked with in Bollywood, before he settled with Hazel. He also reportedly dated Preeti Jhangiani, Minissha Lamba, Shamita Shetty, Riya Sen and even Deepika Padukone. Preity Zinta’s name had also come up once, but angry about the references she had clearly denied having a relationship with Yuvraj.Kim had made her debut in Bollywood with Aditya Chopra’s Mohabbatein in 2000 but she struggled to cement her position in the industry. She soon vanished from the Hindi film industry after delivering a slew of flops in her career. She was last seen in SS Rajamouli’s Telugu blockbuster Magadheera making a special appearance. Kim SharmaInstagramActress Kim Sharma may have been away from showbiz but for the past one year, she was in the news for her relationship with actor Harshvardhan Rane. But their romance was short-lived as they parted away in April this year after dating for a year. The actress, however, didn’t let the break up affect her emotionally and she has now turned her focus on living the present to the fullest. And her Instagram account is a proof of that wherein she keeps giving a sneak peak into her daily life.She recently posted a picture wherein she was seen flaunting her belly button piercing while chilling in the swimming pool wearing a multi-coloured neon bikini. Showing off her well-toned body with a smile on her face, Kim said that she misses sunshiny day in the midst of the gloomy ones.Last night, Kim attended her rumoured ex-boyfriend and cricketer Yuvraj Singh’s retirement party in Mumbai wherein she was seen having a great time with the man of the evening. She also happily posed for pictures with Yuvraj and wife Hazel Keech together which speaks a thousand words about their cordial relationship.Wearing a leopard print thigh-high slit strapped gown, Kim Sharma looked hotter than ever. After the India’s all-rounder announced his retirement from all forms of cricket earlier in June, Kim had lauded him for his achievements on the field.As Hazel called it the “end of an era” on Yuvraj’s retirement, Kim Sharma, whom the cricketer reportedly dated for some years before splitting in 2007, had left a note on Hazel’s post which reads, “Shine brighter you lovely duo.”She also took to her own Twitter account and wrote, “Well played Yuvraj. A standing ovation for some unforgettable moments in sport. May your next phase be as smashing with Hazel.” Kim Sharma, Yuvraj SinghInstagram Kim Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, Hazel KeechInstagramlast_img read more

Texas Cities Want Millennials Living Downtown So Why Does The State Keep

first_imgLess than 3 percent of the $42.9 billion in traditional federal and state transportation money in the plan goes toward projects built for pedestrians and bicyclists; less than 1 percent goes toward public transit. About 15 percent of the $38.2 billion for major highway construction is budgeted for building freeways and corridor extensions that don’t yet exist, including $2.8 billion for a new regional loop north of Denton and McKinney. Cooper Neil for The Texas TribuneInterstate 345 in Dallas connects two major highways and separates downtown Dallas from the Deep Ellum neighborhood.As the neighborhoods in and around downtown Dallas redeveloped in recent decades, they became hotbeds for millennials who, more than their parents did, rely on everything from walking and shared bikes to light-rail trains and ride-hailing apps to get around.The same dynamic has played out in other Texas cities as people with college degrees and higher incomes return to the inner city neighborhoods that previous generations abandoned for the suburbs. But car ownership is still a necessity in most of the state’s urban areas, which still trail other American metros in luring educated young professionals — who in turn help attract new businesses and sustain government coffers.That’s a conundrum for transportation planners like Kevin Feldt, who spends his workdays inside a nondescript Arlington office building trying to figure out how to build North Texas’ future transportation grid for a new generation while political and financial inertia still heavily favor the kind of highway building that exacerbates sprawl.“Where are we headed?” Feldt asks. “And what does the future hold? That’s my dilemma.”Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson for The Texas TribuneA man walks his dog near the farmers market in downtown Dallas in June 2018. The neighborhood has driven much of the population growth in the central business district in recent years.Feldt is a program manager for the North Central Texas Council of Governments, one of many metropolitan planning groups around the country that the federal government has tasked with overseeing transportation planning in urban areas.Texas has 25 such entities, including Austin’s Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, San Antonio’s Alamo Area Metropolitan Planning Organization and southeast Texas’ Houston-Galveston Area Council.Of the state’s four largest metro areas, only North Texas has completed its long-term transportation plan for 2045. Such plans influence a web of federal, state and local entities as they spend billions of taxpayer dollars turning those plans into miles of new freeways, city streets, transit lines and bike lanes.And while millennials may be pushing away old ideas about what transportation infrastructure — and the development patterns it creates — should look like, the Council of Governments’ proposed $135 billion plan for North Texas’ future looks decidedly old school: One of the goals of the long-term North Texas plan, dubbed Mobility 2045, is to give people alternatives to driving everywhere solo. But the political reality is that highway projects are much easier to sell in the suburbs than pedestrian, bicycle and transit projects.“It’s a vicious cycle that’s going on here,” said Dallas City Councilman Scott Griggs. “It’s transportation planning right out of the 1950s.”One of the most crucial contributors to what has become a self-fulfilling highway-building bureaucracy can be found at the beginning of the planning process itself: forecasting future transportation demand.“We look at 2045, but we use today’s travel behavior and reasons for traveling as staying constant,” Feldt said. “I don’t think that will be the case, but we have no way of understanding what travel demand will be like in 2045, so we do the best we can.”A return to the urban coreThe Austin area leads the state and is 11th in the nation when it comes to the percentage of millennials who have college degrees, according to a Brookings Institution analysis of census data. Dallas-Fort Worth is tied at 40th with Los Angeles. Houston, the state’s largest metropolitan area, came in at 51st, while El Paso and San Antonio are near the bottom at 73rd and 78th, respectively.Meanwhile, Dallas and other Texas cities find themselves competing not only against other U.S. cities but against their own suburbs for college-educated young workers. Dallas has shown signs of progress on that front.An analysis of census data by the University of Virginia Demographics Research Group found that during the redevelopment of Dallas’ urban core between 1990 and 2012, the growth of college-educated residents — and per-capita incomes — in those neighborhoods outpaced the downtown areas in America’s 50 biggest metropolitan regions.Similar trends have played out in Austin and Houston, which saw the biggest increases in college-educated residents and per-capita incomes in and around their downtowns. But those areas and North Texas also saw above-average increases in educated residents and incomes out in the suburbs — and San Antonio’s biggest increases happened in neighborhoods more than 15 miles from downtown.Does that mean educated millennials prefer dense, urban neighborhoods or more spacious suburbs? It’s hard to tell, because members of the up-and-coming generation have to adapt their lives to metropolitan areas that were built around the automobile long before they were born — which can fool planners who use current behavior to predict future needs.Do people live far from work and avoid public transit because they want to, or because previous planners didn’t invest in sidewalks and rail lines that would make such options viable?Kyle Shelton, the director of strategic partnerships for Rice University’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research, thinks it’s the latter: “We have legitimately not created the infrastructure that makes it the most convenient and makes it the most effective,” he said.Tallying the needLeslie Boorhem-StephensonKevin Feldt, a program manager for the North Central Texas Council of Governments, in his Arlington office where he works on transportation plans for the Dallas-Fort Worth area.The Regional Transportation Council — a 44-member body of elected and appointed officials that prioritizes which projects get funded — unanimously approved Mobility 2045 this month for the Dallas-Fort Worth area.And while highway construction projects got more money than rail expansions, sidewalks and bike lanes combined, regional officials say they still face a $327 billion shortfall in what they need for the region’s roads.How did they get to that number?“We assume that we’re going to remove all of the congestion,” Feldt said.It’s an assumption that everyone involved knows will never become reality. That’s because it would entail something that transportation and urban planning experts say is counterproductive: building even wider highway corridors, which typically prompt more drivers to use them, which only perpetuates congestion in what becomes a never-ending cycle known as induced demand.Feldt admits it’s not a feasible solution. “I don’t think you want to [keep expanding highways] because it would be very ugly and very land-intensive,” he said.So why spend the time to estimate the number at all?Because those alleged shortfalls are what local and regional officials use to persuade state lawmakers to provide more money and allow more financing mechanisms to pay for more roads — which Feldt acknowledges is just another mechanism for perpetuating the sprawl that leads to more demand for roads in coming years.The coming population boomWhen it comes to regulating how land is developed for housing and businesses — which can influence the kinds and amount of transportation infrastructure that is needed — cities hold the reins. And city officials typically focus on how development can increase their lifeblood: property taxes and sales tax revenues.“They’re not going to put a limit on where they can grow and how they can grow,” Feldt said.Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson for The Texas TribuneSince the Dallas North Tollway has expanded farther north into Collin County, once sleepy farm towns have ballooned in population and turned into suburbs that draw major employers.Republican state Rep. Ron Simmons of Carrollton, who sits on the Texas House Transportation Committee and also is a nonvoting member of NCTCOG’s executive board, said cities are prone to green-lighting developments, then turning to transportation agencies to build the roads and other infrastructure to support the growth that follows.“That’s not a good way to do business,” he said.But for planners like Feldt, there’s pressure to accommodate the expected onslaught of people coming to suburban Texas, even if there are cultural and technological shifts currently changing what people want out of their transportation networks.“Well, we’ve got to accommodate those people somehow,” he said.Between now and 2045, NCTCOG estimates the North Texas region will grow from 7.2 million to 11.2 million people — and nearly one-third of those additional 4 million people are expected to live in suburban Collin and Denton counties. Dallas County, the area’s urban center, housed 46 percent of the region’s population in 1990. That is projected to fall to just over 30 percent in 27 years.As a result, the long-term plan under Mobility 2045 includes nearly $5 billion for projects like the outer loop in Collin County, widening the Dallas North Tollway for its entire stretch through Collin County and extending it to within a county of the Oklahoma state line.Planners are quick to point out that many revenue streams come with restrictions on the kinds of projects that can be built. But heavily favoring suburban toll roads and freeway expansions threatens to exacerbate the middle-class flight away from the urban core, a phenomenon that already has left Dallas to grapple with growing income inequality, housing stock that doesn’t match up with what residents can afford and underperforming schools.“We want suburbs to be successful, but we also want a strong core,” said Griggs, the Dallas councilman. “So much of this suburban growth has been at a cost and at the expense of the city of Dallas.”Legislative hurdlesMobility 2045 calls for more than $33 billion to pay for rail expansion and improved bus and paratransit service — including planned rail lines that would connect to Frisco, McKinney, Midlothian, Cleburne and Waxahachie, all of which are suburbs or rural county seats that don’t currently pay into any transit agencies.Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson for The Texas TribuneA Dallas Area Rapid Transit light-rail train pulls out of the Deep Ellum Station in Dallas in June 2018.But more than $22 billion of the $33.3 billion budgeted for transit capital projects comes from public-private partnerships or a $10 fee on vehicle registrations or other funding mechanisms that do not yet exist and could require legislative approval. Dallas Area Rapid Transit board chair Sue Bauman is skeptical that either could get support from state lawmakers, who have spent minuscule amounts of money on transit agencies once they wrote legislation creating them.“I think they feel like by doing that, they’ve done their share,” she said.Since the 1990s, DART has built what agency officials boast is the largest light rail network in North America. Which is true, if measured only by the length of tracks. DART has 93 miles of light rail and jointly operates another 34 miles of commuter tracks with Fort Worth’s Trinity Metro. That dwarfs Houston METRO’s 22 miles of light rail and Austin Capital Metro’s 32 miles of commuter rail.But DART’s light rail system was built to mimic its highway system — it acts as a hub-and-spoke network where all major corridors meet downtown and then fan out to suburban neighborhoods in every direction. Critics say that design leaves several urban neighborhoods without rail and suppresses the number of people who would use the system because its bus service is often infrequent and undependable.DART is embarking on plans to build a second downtown Dallas light rail line, expand its urban streetcar system, overhaul its bus routes and construct the suburban commuter Cotton Belt rail line to DFW Airport.Its plans to finance all of this rely on DART’s own sales tax revenues and federal loans and grants that must be divvied up between all of the nation’s mass-transit providers. While the Texas Department of Transportation has a budget of more than $26 billion for the 2018 and 2019 fiscal years, less than 1 percent of that is earmarked for public transit.“There’s zero (state money) and that’s the way it’s set up,” said Bauman, who also sits on the RTC. “I wish there was a mechanism, but there really isn’t.”Simmons, the Carrollton lawmaker, is pessimistic that lawmakers will start steering more state money toward transit any time soon.“You’re not going to get passed in the Legislature money from the state for mass transit when you have such needs for road construction itself,” he said.A budgeting trickMeanwhile, the Council of Government’s highway construction plans are also predicated on revenues that don’t yet exist, although they make up a much smaller percentage of the total. More than $7.2 billion of the money needed to make all the highway construction a reality comes from the assumption that lawmakers will hike both state and federal gas tax rates twice in the next 28 years — even though they haven’t done so in the past 25 years.It’s a budgeting trick that planners like Feldt use as a placeholder for extra money that hasn’t yet materialized.“It’s reasonably prudent to assume we’re going to get some additional funding,” he said. “We just don’t know where or how much, so we take our best guess and come up with stuff.”But if transportation funds are so limited — especially when it comes to transit and other non-car-centric projects — what makes planners so confident that highways will get even more?“History has told us over the last 30 or 40 years that somehow, some way, we always get additional funding,” Feldt said.This story was written in collaboration with D Magazine and is not available for republishing until July 25, 2018. For questions regarding Texas Tribune republishing email director of media relations and partnerships, NatalieChoate at nchoate@texastribune.org.Disclosure: Rice University has been a financial supporter of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune’s journalism. Find a complete list of them here. Share About 58 percent of the $89.4 billion earmarked for capital projects is for new pavement — everything from highways and tolled lanes to city streets. And while there’s $33.3 billion earmarked for public transit construction and improvements, nearly two-thirds of that money is from revenue streams that do not exist yet.last_img read more

India Turkey to enhance bilateral ties

first_imgKolkata: Ambassador-Designate of India to the Republic of Turkey Mr Sanjay Bhattacharyya on Monday stressed on the importance of cultural ties between Kolkata and Turkey. He laid emphasis on the promotion of tourism between the two countries.He was addressing a special session: ‘Economic Climate and Business Opportunities in Turkey and Egypt’ organised by Bharat Chamber of Commerce at its office. He briefed the business community of Kolkata to new opportunities of trade and investment in Turkey and Egypt while addressing the session. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsWhile talking to the Millennium Post on the sideline of the programme, he said a festival on Rabindranath Tagore will be organised in Egypt to boost cultural ties between the two countries. He also visited Shantiniketan recently in this regard. He said there has been an influx of tourists to Egypt from India but the number of people visiting India from Egypt is not up to the mark due to lack of tour operators. During his speech, Bhattacharyya said as a result of the recent transformation in the Egypt, more transparency is being induced in the system of business practices through Legislative and Economic reforms. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedTurkey’s economy witnessed a significant momentum of growth during the last decade and a half. In this context, Mr Sitaram Sharma, president, Bharat Chamber of Commerce referred to increased trade between India and Turkey recorded at USD 5.85 billion during 2016. He also laid emphasis on creation of a Free Trade Agreement in order to expand the horizon of economic ties between the two countries. Egypt ranks as the best FDI destination in Africa for India.last_img read more

Amazons Ring gave access to its employees to watch live footage of

first_imgAccording to a report by The Intercept, Ring, Amazon’s smart doorbell company gave access to its employees to watch live footage from cameras of the customers. As per the claim, Ring engineers and executives were allowed to watch the unfiltered footage of the users. Last year in February, Amazon acquired Ring for $1 billion. Amazon had been in the news last year for its data breach where the company leaked out the customers’ email addresses. Ring markets its cameras, mounted as doorbells as a security means that act like a privatized neighborhood watch while the user was away. The staff at Ring was able to gain access to the cameras inside as well as outside the home, depending on where the devices were positioned. Ring has been accused of mishandling videos collected by the smart device and failing to protect the footage with encryption. The Ring customer’s email address is enough to get access to cameras from user’s home. According to The Information and The Intercept, Ring’s video annotation team would watch camera footage and tag objects, humans and other things in the video clips so that its object recognition software could better itself. In 2016, Ring provided its Ukraine-based research and development team unfettered access to a folder on Amazon’s S3 cloud storage service that had unencrypted videos created by Ring cameras. Ring’s Neighbors app, that lets users receive real-time crime and safety alerts, doesn’t include any mention of image or facial recognition in its description. Ring’s terms of service and its privacy policy don’t mention any details about the manual video annotation being conducted by humans. Ring tried to justify that the videos weren’t shared by the company. Ring responded to this post stating, “We take the privacy and security of our customers’ personal information extremely seriously. In order to improve our service, we view and annotate certain Ring video recordings. These recordings are sourced exclusively from publicly shared Ring videos from the Neighbors app (in accordance with our terms of service), and from a small fraction of Ring users who have provided their explicit written consent to allow us to access and utilize their videos for such purposes. Ring employees do not have access to livestreams from Ring products. We have strict policies in place for all our team members. We implement systems to restrict and audit access to information. We hold our team members to a high ethical standard and anyone in violation of our policies faces discipline, including termination and potential legal and criminal penalties. In addition, we have zero tolerance for abuse of our systems and if we find bad actors who have engaged in this behavior, we will take swift action against them.” Because of the privacy concerns, users are now skeptical about using Ring’s smart doorbell. One comment on HackerNews read, “The ring doorbell is installed at your front door. It records pretty much all movement to and from your house. It records audio at the doorstep, so if you’re having a conversation with anyone at your doorstep, that gets recorded too.” Another user commented, “If some rando gets my ring doorbell footage and figures out where I live, that’s hard to undo. If someone steals my stuff and gets away with it because I didn’t have a ring doorbell, that’s annoying but much easier to recover from. We are talking about the difference between an insurance claim and moving house.” According to a few users, this device is prone to DDOS attacks. One of the users commented, “Aside from the 700 person team given access to live video feeds and customer databases, the lack of proper security of this product makes it a PRIME target for DDOS attacks that could cripple infrastructure.” But few users are in the favor of such devices as they find them safe and convenient to use. One user commented, “These devices are extremely popular in my neighborhood, and cost/convenience is the only thing keeping them from being universal.” Another user commented, “I’d say, yes. I’ve been able to watch that many people see the ring (they see the camera), and they back right off the porch. It’s been awesome in this respect, people simply ring it less.” Some users believe such surveillance devices shouldn’t use cloud but instead have data stored locally. Others are now looking out for alternatives like Xiaomi Dafang camera, RCA doorbell camera, and Blue Iris. This news surely makes one reflect on how home appliances could get monitored by companies or hackers and personal data might get misused. Note: We have edited this news to include the response from the Ring team to our post. Read Next AWS introduces Amazon DocumentDB featuring compatibility with MongoDB, scalability and much more Amazon confirms plan to sell a HIPAA eligible software, Amazon Comprehend Medical, which will mine medical records of the patients US government privately advised by top Amazon executive on web portal worth billions to the Amazon; The Guardian reportslast_img read more

Costa Rica to join Earth Hour on Saturday

first_imgNo related posts. Ticos on Saturday night will participate in “Earth Hour,” a global initiative to raise awareness for the need to take steps to address climate change.From 8:30-9:30 p.m., Costa Rican residents will join millions of people around the world in turning off all non-essential lights in their homes.Members of the nongovernmental organization Sustainability Consultants, the official organizer of the event in the country, also expect businesses to go dark for the planet. Last year, nearly one billion people in 7,000 cities of 152 countries joined the initiative after the inaugural Earth Hour was held in Sydney in 2007, involving at the time two million individuals and 2,000 businesses.For more info, visit: www.earthhour.org. Facebook Commentslast_img

Amazon has added the AE Networks History Play st

first_imgAmazon has added the A+E Networks’ History Play streaming service to its line-up of Prime Video Channels in the UK, Germany and Austria, marking the first time the service has been available in the three countries.Prime members will gain access to History Play with an add -n subscription of £3.99 in the UK and €3.99 per month in Germany and Austria, with a seven-day free trial in the UK and a 14-day free trial in Germany and Austria.The service will be available on smart TVs, iOS and Android mobile devices, Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, Fire tablets and games consoles and through the web.At launch the service will offer UK Prime members shows including Madness front man Suggs who teams up with leading detectorist Stephen Taylor as they unearth secrets from the Second World War inWW2 Treasure Hunters, Hunting Hitler and The Curse of Oak Island.“We’re thrilled to now offer Prime members in the UK, Germany and Austria access to a wide-range of popular documentaries and series for the first time with A+E’s on-demand subscription service, History Play, through Prime Video Channels.  History Play adds an incredible line up of ground-breaking stories across different areas of history, to the wide selection of entertainment we offer customers through Prime Video Channels in the UK, Germany and Austria,” said Julian Monaghan, European MD of Channels at Amazon Prime Video. Dean Possenniskie, managing director, A+E Networks EMEA, said: “Launching History Play is a great opportunity to share our quality content with new audiences through Prime Video Channels.  With our mix of UK talent-led commissions and our best-in-class factual programming from around the world, History Play will present a unique offering to Prime members.”last_img read more

Great Panther Silver Limited TSX GPR NYSEA GP

first_imgGreat Panther Silver Limited, (TSX: GPR NYSE.A: GPL)headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, is a profitable primary silver producer operating two 100% owned mines in Mexico.  Over 94% of revenues are derived from unhedged precious metals production with approximately 74% generated from silver sales and 20% from gold.  Since entering production in the first quarter of 2006, the Company has seen five consecutive annual increases in revenues and provides strong leverage to future rises in precious metals prices. The Company has also been growing its resource and reserve base at both 100% owned operations. A new resource/reserve estimate is expected for the Guanajuato Mine Complex and the San Ignacio Project in the second quarter of 2012 and a new resource/reserve estimate for the Topia Mines during the third quarter of 2012. Great Panther continues to replace mined ounces, grow resources and reserves at both operations, and is targeting a 10 year mine live at each.For more information, please visit the website or contact Rhonda Bennetto, VP Corporate Communications, toll free at 1-888-355-1766 or by email at rbennetto@greatpanther.com. Sponsor Advertisement As Ted Butler has pointed out countless times, it’s what JPMorgan et al do on the next rally that will determine how it unfolds.Gold traded within a five dollar price band through most of the Friday trading day on Planet Earth…exceeding it only briefly between 8:10 a.m. at 9:40 a.m. Eastern time.  Those two times represented the high and low price ticks of the day…such as they were.I was particularly impressed by the fact that ‘free-market forces’ were able to thread the needle by closing gold on Friday in the 60 cent price gap between the Wednesday close and the Thursday close.  I hope there was a prize for doing that.Gold closed on Friday at $1,642.40 spot…down twenty cents from Thursday.  Net volume, at 77,000 contracts, was the lightest since I can’t remember when.Silver’s price action was rather similar to gold’s, but the price was more ‘volatile’…with the high and low price ticks come at approximately the same times as gold.  The silver price actually broke through the $32 price mark on its high tick [$32.01 spot] for the second day in a row but, as you can tell, it wasn’t allowed to close anywhere near that price.Silver closed at $31.70 spot…down a dime from Thursday.  Net volume was a shockingly light 19,000 contracts.The dollar index hung in around the 79.60 mark until about 10:00 a.m. Hong Kong time on their Friday morning…and then rolled over.  Most of the decline was in by 10:30 a.m. Eastern time in New York…and the index basically traded sideways from there.  The dollar index closed down about 34 basis points at 79.14.Four out of the five days this week, gold stocks opened in positive territory…and then quickly got sold off into negative territory regardless of the price action in gold that followed…with stock prices continuing to erode all day along.  The Friday trading action was exactly that as well. The HUI closed on its low of the day, down 0.97%.  In my twelve years of watching this market, I’ve never seen anything like this.  It’s unnatural.Virtually all of the silver stocks finished down on the day as well…including all the stock represented in Nick Laird’s Silver Sentiment Index.  It closed down 0.17%…the same amount it closed up on Thursday.(Click on image to enlarge)The CME’s Daily Delivery Report was a yawner, as only 11 gold contracts were posted for delivery on Tuesday.There were no reported changes in GLD yesterday, but over at the SLV ETF an authorized participant withdrew 1,262,086 troy ounces of silver.For the third day in a row there was no sales report from the U.S. Mint.The Comex-approved depositories reported receiving 732,023 troy ounces of silver on Thursday…and shipped only 4,966 ounces out the door.  Since Wednesday, JPMorgan’s precious metals warehouse has added another million ounce of silver to their stash, which now sits at 14.0 million ounces.  The link to that action is here.The Commitment of Traders Report that came out yesterday [for positions held a the close of Comex trading on Tuesday] was basically a non-event.  There was virtually no change in the Commercial net short position in silver…less than a hundred contracts but, as Ted Butler pointed out to me, the total open interest blew out by almost 7,000 contracts, so a lot of spread trades were put on during the reporting week.In gold, the Commercial traders increased their net short position by a hair over 5,000 contracts, or 500,000 ounces.  Nothing to see here, folks.As expected, The Central Bank of the Russian Federation updated their website with the March numbers…and they showed that they had purchased 500,000 ounces of gold to add to the 28.3 million ounces they already held.  I must admit that after seeing nothing added in January…and 100,000 ounces sold in February…I was relieved to see this number.  I thank Nick Laird for his wonderful chart below.(Click on image to enlarge)Here’s a chart that Washington state reader S.A. sent our way yesterday.  It’s entitled “Total Credit Market Debt Owed“…and needs no further embellishment from me.(Click on image to enlarge)Here’s an interesting story that appeared in an Australian newspaper just the other day.  It includes a photo of the Perth Mint’s 10 kilogram “Year of the Dragon” gold and silver ‘coins’.  I thank Australian reader Brad Ellett for sending it to me…and Australian reader Wesley Legrand for putting it in a format that I could use in this column.  You’ll certainly need the ‘click to enlarge’ feature for this one.(Click on image to enlarge)I have the usual number of stories for a Saturday, including a bunch that I’ve been saving all week for today’s column.  I hope you have the time to run through them all over the weekend.Inflation is as violent as a mugger, as frightening as an armed robber…and as deadly as a hit man. – President Ronald ReaganToday’s ‘blast from the past’ isn’t really from the past at all…but a “60 Minutes” video that was sent to me by my father-in-law, Bill Radtke.Lesley Stahl profiles British musical savant Derek Paravicini, whose computer-like memory for music is matched by his creative abilities to play it in any style. Derek, a musical genius and nephew of Camilla Parker Bowles, plays the piano like you’ve never heard. Yet, he doesn’t know his age, nor does he know how to hold up three fingers! Also, he is blind!Having taken seven years of classical piano classes…plus having sat on the Programming Committee of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra for eleven years…I know greatness when I hear it.This is one of the most amazing videos that you’re ever likely to watch.  It runs 14:22 minutes…and is posted over at youtube.com…and the link is here.Well, it was a very quiet Friday and, for the most part, a very quiet week in both gold and silver.  But it wasn’t quiet because that’s what the markets in the precious metals wanted to do…it was quiet because, as Jim Rickards pointed out in his commentary above, these markets are managed.Where we go to from here is the $64,000 question for which I have no answer at the moment.  Of course, if left to their own devices, the precious metals would explode the outer edges of the known universe almost instantly…and the current economic, financial and monetary system would be a smouldering ruin within five business day…as I have pointed out on many occasions.But since that won’t be allowed to happen, at least not while ‘da boyz’ have any say in the matter, we’ll probably get something quite a bit less than that.I doubt very much that this current oversold condition in the precious metals and their shares will last much longer…and it only remains to be seen how high and fast gold and silver will be allowed to rise once they break through the key moving averages.And, as Ted Butler has pointed out countless times, it’s what JPMorgan et al do on the next rally that will determine how it unfolds.  Will they immediately become the short seller of last resort once again, or will they step aside and let the metals run for a bit?That, and only that, will be the deciding factor…and all we can do is wait it out.  A lot of investors have already voted with their feet and their wallets and have exited the precious metals market…and as we know, any bull market tries to shake off as many non-believers as it can before making its next big move…price-managed or not.  This is certainly the case here.I’m still “all in”…so nothing has changed from my end.Before signing off for the day and the week, I have this little announcement that the nice ladies over at Casey Research sent my way yesterday…and I’d like you to run through it, if you wouldn’t mind.Next week Casey’s spring summit…“Recovery Reality Check”…will be held in Florida. If you’re not registered to attend, you may want to purchase the complete audio collection (available in a 20-CD set and/or MP3 downloads) so you can listen at home. The faculty presenting includes David Stockman, director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Reagan; resource investing legend Rick Rule; Casey Research Chairman Doug Casey; Harry Dent, best-selling author of The Crash Ahead; Lacy Hunt, executive VP of Hoisington Investment Management…and 26 other financial luminaries. And they are telling me if you order before the show starts on April 27th…you’ll save $100.  To learn more about the 31 financial experts and what they are presenting, you can click here…and it costs nothing to check it out.I’m outta here!  Enjoy what’s left of your weekend…and I’ll see you on Tuesday.last_img read more

The Tsimane people descendants of the Incas are

first_imgThe Tsimane people, descendants of the Incas, are among the most isolated people in Bolivia. They number about 16,000 and live in 80 mostly riverbank villages of 50 to several hundred people scattered across about 3,000 square miles of Amazon jungle. They are forager-farmers who fish, hunt, cut down jungle trees with machetes and produce an average of nine children per family, says Michael Gurven, chair of the Integrated Anthropological Sciences Unit at the University of California at Santa Barbara.Gurven has visited and studied the Tsimane people for 16 years. Last month, he and colleagues published a paper in the journal Social Science & Medicine on why these impoverished people, who live an average of just over 50 years (compared to the world average of 71.5), often won’t take advantage of medical care, even when it’s free and offered by people they’ve come to trust.What the researchers found offers some clues about why many of us resist going to the doctor when things like rashes, coughs and pains make it pretty clear that we should. Dr. Lisa Cooper, professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, is not connected with the social science study, but she studies medical adherence and preventive care in the U.S. She says the study shows that while providing medical services is important, it’s not enough to ensure good health.”We also have to deal with belief systems, with world view, with spiritual beliefs,” she says. “We’ve got to take a much broader view of health.”When Gurven and his team made trips to Bolivia over the years, they brought medical teams to the most remote villages. “We’d set up a camp and provide health care,” he says. “If there were 100 people in the village, maybe 30 would come. And every time, it would be the same people. I wondered: Were they the sickest? Why didn’t others come? We didn’t charge them, so money wasn’t the reason. We were right there, so they didn’t have to travel anywhere.”In less remote villages closer to bigger towns, health clinics existed. But in these villages as well, a lot of sick people didn’t go for health care.To find out why, researchers asked 690 people, ages 40 to 89, about their priorities, their perceptions about health, their knowledge of medical care. But they also probed deeper, looking into people’s beliefs about the extent to which their actions mattered.”We tried to get at what they think,” says Gurven. “If they think they’re in charge of what happens to them, that what they put into their body or what they do effects what happens, they’re more likely to go to the doctor. With that feeling of control, they’re likely to believe that medical treatment will help heal them, or that they might be able to prevent getting sick in the first place.But people who think outside forces are in charge — fate or chance — are less likely to seek out care. They believe that nothing they do will matter, or matters far less than the forces of nature or the whims of others, so why bother, says Sarah Alami, a graduate student in anthropology at UC Santa Barbara and lead author of the study. It turned out that the Tsimane people largely believed that forces outside their control — like a mosquito bite that results in a deadly fever or a neighbor who puts a curse on them– mattered more than things within their control.Alami has spent eight months in Bolivia, working with the Tsimane people. She’s seen active people in good health: men felling tall trees, children using the jungle as a playground, women juggling a couple of kids while breastfeeding and fishing.But she’s also seen their ill health. A villager she met a few weeks ago might be gone on her next visit, having succumbed to dengue fever. “You can see they’re heavily burdened by parasites,” she says. “You see open sores that are infected, and they might not go for help. For something they know will kill them, like a snake bite, they’ll try to go for help.” But where it gets trickier, she says, is a less immediately urgent problem, like a cough that might be tuberculosis.The researchers concluded that, from the point of view of a Tsimane villager, not taking advantage of medical care might be a rational decision. They know, Gurven says, that while they might get relief from a parasitic infection by going to a clinic, they also know that they’re quite likely to get reinfected right away. Or maybe they’ll be bitten by a snake on the way home, so they shouldn’t risk venturing as far away as a health clinic.The same kind of thinking in the U.S. keeps people from medical care, Cooper says. “I liken it to what I see in disadvantaged communities where things are chaotic and people believe their circumstances are controlled by chance,” she says. “You go in for care, and the doctor tells you to eat better and exercise.” But you can’t afford to join a fitness center, and you live miles from any store that sells fresh fruits and vegetables. “People living in chaotic environments might think that they don’t have control over what’s happening today, so why worry about what might happen in the future,” she says.Like the Tsimane, poor people in the U.S. might decide to skip medical care, she says. And from their point of view, it’s a rational decision.Even among middle-class people in the developed world, fears of losing control can lead people avoid medical care. “People are afraid they’re going to be diagnosed with something that will limit their employment, or that their disease is so serious, treatment won’t work,” Cooper says. So again, why bother.Avoiding trips to the doctor happens all over the world. But a couple of things have worked to get the indigenous Bolivians to the clinic. “We don’t just explain the illness, and how a treatment will have an effect. Medical knowledge isn’t the answer,” Gurven says. “We try to get them thinking that it matters to their family that they get treated. We get them thinking about their lives in the future. We ask them about their children’s lives five years from now.”It’s the line spouses all over the world use, Gurven says, to get their mates to the doctor: If you won’t do it for yourself, think of the kids.Susan Brink is a freelance writer who covers health and medicine. She is the author of The Fourth Trimester and co-author of A Change of Heart.Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.last_img read more

Simple Upgrades Complex Helpers

first_imgTechnology Next Article Fireside Chat | July 25: Three Surprising Ways to Build Your Brand Add to Queue –shares Sometimes a simple fix can do the job, and sometimes you need the works. This month we look at an easy-as-pie mouse utility, a feature-rich tweaking program, and an arcade-style game that builds in complexity.Teach Your Mouse New TricksYour mouse’s scroll wheel can be handy, but it’s a one-trick animal. KatMouse adds new functionality to the wheel, making navigating multiple windows easier and faster. The freebie lets you scroll through windows without selecting them first.KatMouse leaves your keyboard to focus on a given window while allowing your mouse to scroll other open windows. If you IM or e-mail with a browser window open, it’s balm to your aching hands.Another nifty feature sends a window to the bottom of the heap: Click the scroll wheel, and KatMouse banishes the window on which your pointer rests to the back of the queue. When you have a big window blocking others, this action takes less time than clicking around or using the taskbar to bring up other programs.Though KatMouse doesn’t promise to work with every program, I found that it worked with the current versions of Firefox and Internet Explorer. Developer Eduard Hiti offers KatMouse for free, but accepts donations for his efforts. Free/donationware.Go Nuts for PitaschioMost PCs could stand some usability upgrades–but who wants to spend hours, or a fortune, getting them? With Pitaschio (yes, that’s spelled correctly), making dozens of Windows tweaks is as simple as checking boxes–and it’s free.Pitaschio’s very first window presents dozens of check boxes you can use to tweak the taskbar, disable sometimes-troublesome keys (such as Caps Lock and Insert) or the maximize and minimize buttons on windows, and more. The Autoraise function pulls to the top any window you mouse over.Mouse shortcuts deliver extra power, activating different functions depending on where you click (desktop, taskbar, title bar). You can customize each mouse or mouse-and-key combo by assigning options such as turning off the monitor, opening Control Panel, and changing virtual desktops.Japanese developer Ara hands out Pitaschio at no charge–yum. Free.Don’t Let ’em Bug YouStopping an insect infestation is a blast–no, make that a loud implosion. In the seemingly simple arcade-style game Cosmic Bugs, armored insects have invaded your space station and stripped it to the girders. Your mission: Repair the station and crush the bugs.Grasping the basics is easy. You’re under no time limits, and you rarely target bugs directly. Instead, you shoot lines that seal off sections of the station. If you trap bugs inside, the bugs get smooshed–but if the lines don’t completely extend before a bug reaches them, your lines become insect chow.As you sanitize the station, the levels grow more complicated. Some insects crawl along the girders, and other sail through open spaces; each moves at its own rate and in a distinct style, so sealing them all up is a challenge. Various power-ups give you an edge if used wisely. But be warned: The bugs get power-ups, too.Cosmic Bugs can start your heart pumping, but the lack of time limits lets you proceed at your own pace. I defeated a satisfying 25 levels by the time the hour-long demo expired. Twenty-five down, only 500-odd more to go after paying for the full game. Free 1-hour demo, $20 for full game.Did you have an interesting experience with one of these programs? Is your favorite file missing from PC World’s Downloads library? E-mail your comments to Laura Blackwell . Messages containing attached files will be deleted unread. 3 min read Enroll Now for $5center_img Simple Upgrades, Complex Helpers Brought to you by PCWorld Make your mouse mighty, tweak Windows massively, and crush cosmic creepy-crawlies. Learn from renowned serial entrepreneur David Meltzer how to find your frequency in order to stand out from your competitors and build a brand that is authentic, lasting and impactful. Laura Blackwell May 9, 2008last_img read more

Uber Pledges to Enlist a Million Female Drivers by 2020

first_imgGender Gap Apply Now » Uber Pledges to Enlist a Million Female Drivers by 2020 Next Article Image credit: Reuters | Sergio Perez –shares Add to Queue Reuters center_img Ride-hailing app Uber, under the microscope due to a handful of driver assaults on passengers in some cities, pledged in a blog post to sign up one million female drivers globally by 2020.The ride service did not provide comparable figures for how many women drivers are on the Uber service globally today. In the United States, about 14 percent of its 160,000 drivers are female, the company said, and the company adds thousands more drivers each month.”Uber does not require (minimum) hours, and it does not require a schedule,” said Salle Yoo, Uber’s general counsel, in an interview Monday about why women might find working for Uber attractive. “It offers the chance to be entrepreneurial, the chance to balance work and family.”Women passengers won’t yet have the ability to request women drivers, Yoo said. She stressed the app’s safety features, including the notification of who a driver is, and the ability to share an estimated arrival time with others.The pledge comes as the rapidly expanding company deals with fallout over incidents of assaults by drivers from Boston and Chicago to New Delhi.In the highest-profile case, an Indian woman said in December her driver raped her in Delhi, leading to outcries and a temporary ban of Uber in that city.The female driver initiative is timed to a United Nations gathering in New York Tuesday evening celebrating women’s rights, where Yoo will speak.Uber screens drivers, including using background checks that vary from country to country, but doesn’t hire them as full employees. Instead, it lets drivers use its smartphone-based app to connect them to passengers looking for a paid ride, and takes a cut of the fare.(Reporting by Sarah McBride; Editing by Jeremy Laurence) This story originally appeared on Reuters March 10, 2015 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List 2 min read The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue.last_img read more

Public health leaders issue statement asserting its commitment to vaccine acceptance

first_imgThis statement represents the consensus of a group of independent leaders in public health, law, and medicine who are deeply concerned by the growing threat of hesitancy of parents to vaccinate their children against preventable infectious diseases.”Senior Scholar Scott Ratzan, CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)May 31 2019On Thursday, an international coalition of public health leaders including CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy (CUNY SPH) Dean Ayman El-Mohandes and Senior Scholar Scott Ratzan issued a statement asserting its commitment to vaccine acceptance around the world and to eliminating vaccine-preventable diseases, including childhood diseases such as measles, mumps, and rubella.The Salzburg Global Fellows, made up of public health leaders from Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, and the Americas, pledged to support the development and implementation of new fact-based communications programs to help parents, community, and government leaders make appropriate decisions on childhood immunization, while assuring a continuous and affordable supply of needed vaccines. “When the World Health Organization declares vaccine hesitancy to be one of this year’s ten greatest global threats to human health, it is time to take the opponents of vaccination very seriously,” he continued. “The erosion of parental trust can have long-lasting harm for public health. We must respond with greater creativity, purpose, and generosity of spirit and use multi-sectoral approaches to address this issue.”To address these growing global risks, the authors of the Salzburg Statement founded the International Working Group on Vaccination and Public Health Solutions (IWG) to advocate for, and help develop, new approaches to managing vaccine hesitancy.Source: CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policylast_img read more

Researchers explore connection between sense of smell pollution and neurological disease

first_imgThe question, however, is how does the cerebrospinal fluid — or CSF — leave the enclosed area of the brain and spinal column and where does it go? Research into old scientific papers indicated that some scientists had speculated that one exit pathway was through the nose.”I was trying to label cerebrospinal fluid with a dye for another experiment,” said Jordan N. Norwood, graduate student in cellular and developmental biology and Drew’s student. “We started seeing this dyed cerebrospinal fluid drain out through the nose.”More research into old scientific papers showed that not only had others suggested that the cerebrospinal fluid left through the nose, but that there was a connection to the sense of smell. The researchers also found that there is a long-held connection between loss of smell and the early beginnings of such neurological diseases as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.Using chemical ablation, the researchers destroyed the olfactory sensory nerves that come through the mouse’s hard palate. Destruction of these nerves causes loss of the sense of smell, but also caused the flow of cerebrospinal fluid to stop.Related StoriesAir pollution associated with high risks for birth defectsExposure to particulate matter can cause birth defects and fatalities during pregnancyInhaling irritant that mimics air pollution changes defensive heart-lung reflex for hypertension”The mice seem normal after we used zinc sulfate to ablate the nerves in the nose,” said Drew.Because the flow of fluid from the nose stopped, the researchers checked to see if the pressure around the brain and in the spinal cord increased.”Animals and people are constantly making CSF so if it doesn’t go out, pressure will go up,” said Drew. “But we found that the pressure did not increase after the flow from the nose stopped.”The researchers believe that some other pathway may increase its flow or CSF to compensate for what would normally go out through the nose. These other pathways could include those around the brain that drain into the lymphatic system.Another possibility is that the production of CSF decreases in response to stoppage of CSF flow through the nose.The researchers suggest in a recent issue of eLife, “that damage to olfactory sensory neurons (such as from air pollution) could contribute to altered CSF turnover and flow, providing a potential mechanism for neurological disease.” They also state that “reduced CSF turnover may be a contributing factor to the buildup of toxic metabolites and proteins that cause neurodegenerative disorders.”Both the effects of pollution and the effects of reduced CSF turnover might explain the origin of some of these diseases.”By ablating the neurons, we were able to disrupt and disable flow in the nose,” said Norwood. “People in areas with heavy air pollution may be breathing stuff that does the same thing as our experiments.”Next we would like to collaborate with a lab in the Materials Research Institute that is working with soot or jet fuel particles to see if we get the same effect,” she added. Source:Penn StateJournal reference:Norwood, J.N. et al. (2019) Anatomical basis and physiological role of cerebrospinal fluid transport through the murine cribriform plate. eLife. doi.org/10.7554/eLife.4427. Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jul 2 2019A consensus is building that air pollution can cause neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, but how fine, sooty particles cause problems in the brain is still an unanswered question. Now a team of Penn State researchers, using mice, have found a possible way, but more research is still needed.The researchers looked at how cerebrospinal fluid, the liquid that flows around the brain and spinal cord, flows out through the nose, and what happens when the flow of fluid is stopped. There has been a lot of interest in understanding cerebrospinal fluid movement in the last 5 years. More and more it is realized that it does not just cushion the brain, but may also transfer stuff out of the brain and spinal column area.”Patrick Drew, Huck Distinguished Associate Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics, Neurosurgery and Biomedical Engineeringlast_img read more

Learning Chinesespecific encoding for phonetic similarity

first_imgVisualization representing the phonetic encoding of Pinyin initials. Credit: IBM How Google’s Pixel Buds earphones translate languages Provided by IBM More information: DIMSIM: An Accurate Chinese Phonetic Similarity Algorithm based on Learned High Dimensional Encoding: aclweb.org/anthology/K18-1043 Citation: Learning Chinese-specific encoding for phonetic similarity (2018, November 6) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-11-chinese-specific-encoding-phonetic-similarity.html However, artificially constraining the encoding space to a low dimension (e.g., indexing every initial to a single categorical, or even numerical value) limits the accuracy of capturing the phonetic variations. The correct, data-driven approach is therefore to organically learn an encoding of appropriate dimensionality. The learning model derives accurate encodings by jointly considering Pinyin linguistic characteristics, such as place of articulation and pronunciation methods, as well as high quality annotated training data sets.Demonstrating a 7.5X Improvement Over Existing Phonetic Similarity ApproachesThe learned encodings can therefore be used to, for example, accept a word as input and return a ranked list of phonetically similar words (ranked by decreasing phonetic similarity). Ranking is important because downstream applications will not scale to consider a large number of substitute candidates for each word, especially when running in real time. As a real world example, we evaluated our approach for generating a ranked list of candidates for each of 350 Chinese words taken from a social media dataset, and demonstrated a 7.5X improvement over existing phonetic similarity approaches.We hope that the improvements yielded by this work for representing language-specific phonetic similarity contributes to the quality of numerous multilingual natural language processing applications. This work, part of the IBM Research SystemT project, was recently presented at the 2018 SIGNLL Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning, and the pre-trained Chinese model is available for researchers to use as a resource in building chatbots, messaging apps, spellcheckers and any other relevant applications.center_img AI approaches for parsing and understanding text require clean input, which in turn implies a necessary amount of pre-processing of raw data. Incorrect homophones and synophones, whether used in error or in jest, must be corrected just like as any other form of spelling or grammar mistake. In the example above, accurately transforming the words “hear” and “so” to their phonetically similar correct counterparts requires a robust representation of phonetic similarity between word pairs.Most algorithms for phonetic similarity are motivated by English use cases, and designed for Indo-European languages. However, many languages, such as Chinese, have a different phonetic structure. The speech sound of a Chinese character is represented by a single syllable in Pinyin, the official Romanization system of Chinese. A Pinyin syllable consists of: an (optional) initial (such as ‘b’, ‘zh’, or ‘x’), a final (such as ‘a’, ‘ou’, ‘wai’, or ‘yuan’) and tone (of which there are five). Mapping these speech sounds to English phonemes results in a fairly inaccurate representation, and using Indo-European phonetic similarity algorithms further compounds the problem. For example, two well-known algorithms, Soundex and Double Metaphone, index consonants while ignoring vowels (and have no concept of tones).PinyinAs a Pinyin syllable represents an average of seven different Chinese characters, the preponderance of homophones is even greater than in English. Meanwhile, the use of Pinyin for text creation is extremely prevalent in mobile and chat applications, both when using speech-to-text and when typing directly, as it is more practical to input a Pinyin syllable and select the intended character. As a result, phonetic-based input mistakes are extremely common, highlighting the need for a very accurate phonetic similarity algorithm that can be relied on to remedy errors.Motivated by this use case, which generalizes to many other languages that do not easily fit the phonetic mold of English, we developed an approach for learning an n-dimensional phonetic encoding for Chinese, An important characteristic of Pinyin is that the three components of a syllable (initial, final and tone) should be considered and compared independently. For example, the phonetic similarity of the finals “ie” and “ue” is identical in the Pinyin pairs {“xie2,” “xue2”} and {“lie2,” “lue2”}, in spite of the varying initials. Thus, the similarity of a pair of Pinyin syllables is an aggregation of the similarities between their initials, finals, and tones. Performing the mental gymnastics of making the phoenetic distinction between words and phrases such as “I’m hear” to “I’m here” or “I can’t so but tons” to “I can’t sew buttons,” is familiar to anyone who has encountered autocorrected text messages, punny social media posts and the like. Although at first glance it may seem that phonetic similarity can only be quantified for audible words, this problem is often present in purely textual spaces. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Trust the priority for Facebook with earnings due

first_imgFacebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been investing in tools to protect user data and prevent the spread of misinformation amid heightened scrutiny of the leading social network © 2019 AFP Reassuring usersFacebook has faced criticism that it has been used as a platform to spread divisive or misleading information, as was the case during the 2016 election that put US President Donald Trump in the White House.It is also under heightened scrutiny over how it handles the sensitive personal data it collects from its users, with new privacy rules in place in Europe and legislation under consideration in Washington.”Facebook’s future is going to be determined by whether users uncomfortable with being tracked disengage from using Facebook services,” said Richard Windsor, an analyst who pens the Radio Free Mobile blog.But Windsor said costs are still likely to rise much more quickly than revenues as Facebook hires more people to police its content. Facebook faces challenges on how it deals with personal user data and manipualtion of the platform Winning back trust is seen as the key priority for Facebook as the world’s biggest social network readies its financial update on the final months of 2018 Wednesday. Facebook is looking to rebound from a horrific year marked by a series of scandals over data protection and privacy, and concerns that it had been manipulated by foreign interests for political purposes.Facebook so far has been able to keep revenue momentum thanks to its unique advertising model. Its global user base has risen to more than 2.2 billion, although growth has stalled in North America and Europe.In the quarter that ended in September, Facebook saw a profit of $5.14 billion on revenue that leaped 33 percent to $13.7 billion.Industry tracker eMarketer expects Facebook’s share of the global digital ad market to grow this year. The social network claims 20.5 percent of an overall $327.28 billion spent.But analysts say the trust issue is crucial for Facebook if it wants to move forward on its mission to connect the world.”Facebook needs a fresh start in 2019, and what it reveals about its usage and revenue… will tell us just how feasible that fresh start will be,” said eMarketer principal analyst Debra Aho Williamson.”In order for Facebook to move forward, it needs to show that its daily and monthly active user counts in the US and Canada and in Europe have stabilized, and that its ability to grow its ad revenue in those important regions has not been seriously impacted by the scandals and investigations of 2018.” “The net result is further declines in the valuation to match the unwinding of profitability,” he wrote.The California-based company also faces demographic challenges as younger users shift to other platforms, seeing Facebook as less cool than it was.It may be able to compensate with gains in other services, including its popular visual social network Instagram, messaging services WhatsApp and Messenger and its Oculus virtual reality division.Facebook found itself facing yet another potential embarrassment Wednesday over a report saying it paid users, including teens, to track their smartphone activity. Younger users may not see Facebook as cool anymore, but some of them are using its sister social network Instagram Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Trust the priority for Facebook with earnings due (2019, January 30) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-trumps-money-facebook-due.html The TechCrunch report said Facebook paid users ages 13 to 35 up to $20 a month for “root” access to their devices to track their location, app usage, spending habits and other activity.Facebook said there was “nothing secret” about its efforts and that it obtained parental consent where required.Defending the ad modelFacebook co-founder and chief Mark Zuckerberg last week renewed his defense of the social network’s business, arguing that targeting ads based on interests was different from selling people’s data.”If we’re committed to serving everyone, then we need a service that is affordable to everyone,” Zuckerberg wrote in The Wall Street Journal.Advertisers have generally remained true to Facebook, which lets businesses large or small precisely target messages to preferred demographics or geographies with measurable results.”There are more than 90 million small businesses on Facebook, and they make up a large part of our business,” Zuckerberg wrote.”Most couldn’t afford to buy TV ads or billboards, but now they have access to tools that only big companies could use before.” Facebook boosts ‘stories’ format, now open to adslast_img read more

Gir National Park to remain shut for four months from June 16

first_imgWild Life June 15, 2019 SHARE SHARE EMAIL Published on forests Gujarat The Gir National Park, which is home to over 520 Asiatic lions, will remain shut for tourists, both domestic and foreigners, from June 16 to October 15, an official said Saturday. The park is closed during this period every year as it is the breeding season for many animals, including the big cats, said Rajiv Gupta, Additional Chief Secretary of Environment and Forest Department of Gujarat government.“Four months of monsoon are considered the best season for the breeding,” he said.The Gir sanctuary, located at Sasan in Junagadh district, is the only home for the Asiatic lions and attracts a large number of tourists from India and abroad.“During the monsoon, the condition of roads inside the forest area also deteriorates and it becomes unsafe for visitors to travel on such roads,” he said.Besides, the forest department also undertakes maintenance work of the national park in September as peak tourist season starts from November and continues till March end, the official said. COMMENTS SHARE COMMENT BL09ASIATIC_LIONlast_img read more

With 100 members in attendance Lok Sabha sits till 1158 pm to

first_img Press Trust of India New DelhiJuly 12, 2019UPDATED: July 12, 2019 13:05 IST During the debate, the Opposition accused the Modi government of trying to sell off railways’ assets instead of focusing on services. (File Photo)The Lok Sabha sat till 11.58 pm on Thursday to conclude discussion on demands for grants for the Railway Ministry, with Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi saying it is for the first time in nearly 18 years that the Lower House has sat for this long.Railway Minister Piyush Goyal is likely to reply to the debate Friday afternoon, following which the demands for grants will be put to vote.Nearly a 100 members participated in the debate which began Thursday afternoon and concluded at 11.58 pm.”It is a record,” Joshi said.During the debate, the Opposition accused the Modi government of trying to sell off railways’ assets instead of focusing on services, but the BJP asserted that the transport behemoth is breaking new ground everyday especially in areas of infrastructure and safety.The Congress, TMC and other parties tore into the government as they opposed alleged attempts to “privatise” the railways and claimed that the NDA dispensation was “selling dreams” like the ‘bullet train’ to the people, which were “not feasible”.Countering the opposition’s allegations, BJP MP Sunil Kumar Singh said the performance of railways is much better now than under the Congress rule and the national transporter was achieving new milestones.Railway accidents have reduced by 73 per cent in the five-year period of Modi government from 2014 to 2019, he noted.ALSO READ | 29 elected unopposed to Parliamentary Estimates panelALSO WATCH | Narendra Modi arrives for the first parliament session of 17th Lok SabhaFor the latest World Cup news, live scores and fixtures for World Cup 2019, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for World Cup news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted bySnigdha Choudhury With 100 members in attendance, Lok Sabha sits till 11.58 pm to conclude debate on railwaysParliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi said it is for the first time in nearly 18 years that the Lower House has sat for this long.advertisement Nextlast_img read more