SDSU astronomers discover third planet in twostar solar system

first_img Posted: April 16, 2019 KUSI Newsroom, April 16, 2019 SDSU astronomers discover third planet in two-star solar system SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A group of researchers led by astronomers at San Diego State University Tuesday announced the discovery of a third planet in the Kepler-47 solar system, making it the only known system with multiple planets that orbit two stars.The researchers spotted the Neptune-to-Saturn-sized planet between the system’s two previously observed planets while monitoring data from NASA’s Kepler telescope. SDSU astronomers believe the planet has gone largely unnoticed until now because it may have passed in front of one of the system’s two stars, weakening its transmission signal.The planet has been dubbed Kepler-47d.“We saw a hint of a third planet back in 2012, but with only one transit we needed more data to be sure,” said SDSU astronomer Jerome Orosz, the lead author of the study published in the Astronomical Journal. “With an additional transit, the planet’s orbital period could be determined, and we were then able to uncover more transits that were hidden in the noise in the earlier data.”In addition to confirming the planet’s existence, the research team discovered that it is the largest body on record in the Kepler-47 system. All three planets also have a lower density than Saturn, our solar system’s least dense planet. Kepler 47 is roughly 3340 light-years from Earth toward the northern constellation Cygnus.The system itself is fairly compact and could fit within Earth’s orbit around our sun. One of the system’s stars is roughly similar in size to the one in our solar system while the other is roughly one-third that size. All three planets are at least three times larger than Earth, with Kepler-47d registering at seven times larger.“This work builds on one of the Kepler’s most interesting discoveries: that systems of closely-packed, low-density planets are extremely common in our galaxy,” said Jonathan Fortney, a UC Santa Cruz astronomer who was not involved in the study. “Kepler-47 shows that whatever process forms these planets — an outcome that did not happen in our solar system — is common to single-star and circumbinary planetary systems.” KUSI Newsroom Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

What AncestryDNA taught me about DNA privacy and the complex world of

first_img Share your voice Tags The hardest thing about having your DNA sequenced is generating a teaspoon’s worth of spit.They don’t tell you this in the marketing materials for your typical at-home DNA test kit, but producing enough saliva to fill a pen-sized tube up to its high spit mark is hard work — and strangely nerve-wracking, too.I sneak into an unused meeting room, chewing on air to generate slobber. The kit has two tubes. One, now full of my spit, and a second smaller tube with a chemical mix that stabilizes DNA. After uniting the two tubes, I stick the pale blue spit-mix into a box and mail it off to AncestryDNA, the genetics arm of the world’s largest genealogy company, Ancestry.In 2012 Ancestry launched the AncestryDNA service, which provides paying users the ability to build a timeline of their genes, search for relatives and understand what geographic regions their DNA originates from. Ancestry has sold 14 million kits since launch, and the number continues to grow as curious consumers turn to DNA to unravel their histories. The AncestryDNA kit Chris Linton So it’s not just me caught up in this craze — search for “Ancestry DNA results” on YouTube and you’ll find an entire subculture propped up by enthusiastic explorers probing their genetic histories. There’s a whole genre of evening TV dedicated to analyzing the family histories of the rich and famous. Over the last two years many DNA kit manufacturers have begun marketing their products as “perfect gifts.” In the 2018 Thanksgiving period, AncestryDNA broke its November sales record. Your DNA story has become this year’s hottest Christmas gift! Consumer genealogy tests have become big business practically overnight. Why are we so interested in finding out the secrets of our DNA?”I think the major appeal of DNA testing is to find out something new about us,” says Caitlin Curtis, a population geneticist at the University of Queensland. That’s certainly true for me, at least. My first thought is what revelations my spit might teach me about myself. But in the quest for answers, do we truly understand what kind of information we’re giving up?Related: The best DNA testing kits for 2019 Digging into your DNAThe almost unfathomable complexity of all life on Earth, from bacteria to humans, relies on DNA, but the DNA code itself is made up of just four letters: A, T, C and G.These letters, known as bases, always pair together the same way — A with T, C with G. The order in which these letters are arranged is what makes us different and gives us our unique traits. And because we hand parts of our DNA from parent to offspring, it also links us to the past. We just need to be able to “read” it and put all those bases in order. This is known as DNA sequencing. In the future, not even your DNA will be sacred Genealogy site credited with helping ID Golden State Killer suspect Best DNA Ancestry Testing Kits Now playing: Watch this: The genealogy craze 8 7:06 DNA data storage could solve a big problem Comments Who does that data belong to? It can be confusing, especially when these companies make deals with huge corporations to share their data.”I believe that there is an ethical obligation for these companies to be very upfront, honest and explain in simple terms to people what might happen to their data after they take a test, but that is not always the case,” says Curtis.AncestryDNA’s terms and conditions state that it “does not claim any ownership rights in the DNA submitted for testing” but by submitting a sample you effectively “grant AncestryDNA … a royalty-free, worldwide, sublicensable, transferable license to host, transfer, process, analyze, distribute, and communicate your Genetic Information for the purposes of providing you products and services.”It may be my DNA, but how it’s used in the future is something that AncestryDNA decides. However, there is a failsafe. The nuke-it-all option.”It’s your data, you should be able to do with it what you want,” Starr says. “If you decide at some point that you don’t want us to have it anymore, you can tell us to delete it and you can even tell us to destroy the DNA sample.”DNA as data”The biggest danger with handing control of your DNA data is the potential for discrimination based on that information,” says Curtis.Now that even our DNA is being digitized and stored in the infinite online filing cabinet of the World Wide Web, we must confront a reality in which our own genetic makeup can be hacked, stolen or used against us.”There are some parallels to broader conversations around how to govern our personal digital data online – and the possibility for it to be used in unanticipated ways in the future,” she continues.When we began signing up, en masse, for social media services such as Facebook and Twitter over a decade ago, we blindly shared our best baby photos and snarkiest thoughts with reckless abandon. Little did we know our personal data was being siphoned off insidiously and then used to target us in ad campaigns. And that data is still being generated and used today — Facebook gets to know exactly who we are in a matter of months. A cautionary tale, it would seem, considering genealogy testing has undergone rapid growth in the last two years. And though the science is getting better, the regulations and potential pitfalls are becoming harder to nail down.”It’s a complicated issue because in some countries there is protection against discrimination, and in some countries there are very few laws about what you can do with genetic data,” explains Curtis. In the US, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 prevents health insurers and employers from discriminating against you based on your genetic profile. However, in Australia, insurance companies can discriminate based on the results of a DNA test, increasing premiums or completely excluding coverage for certain diseases.Cool. Cool cool cool. Almost none of this research was done before I spat into a tube six or seven weeks ago, and now I realize my nerves weren’t about how much spittle I could produce. I jangled because I was diving headfirst into a world I thought I understood, but actually knew hardly anything about. There were voices gnawing at my subconscious. A devil on one shoulder, an angel on the other. One quietly trying to tell me that it’s kind of weird to give a private, multinational company access to the immutable information that can be used to identify me — and only me. The other saying “what can you lose?”You already know which one I listened to. I click through ready to solve this admittedly feeble personal mystery. But there are no shocking revelations. I end up with an ethnicity estimate that puts my DNA origins at 55 percent England, Wales and Northwestern Europe and 44 percent Ireland and Scotland.However, there’s also a zero to 1 percent chance my DNA comes from a region in West Africa that AncestryDNA pegs as relating to “Benin/Togo.” Surprising to me, but not unusual, according to Starr.”A 0-1 percent would say there might be something interesting here, but there might not,” he says. A result such as this might “fall out” in the future, as AncestryDNA’s databases continue to be refined by additional samples and research programs. My ethnicity estimate is only one half of the picture, however, because I can also look at my DNA matches, which directly correlates my DNA with that of other users in Ancestry’s database. In my case, it throws up two matches that AncestryDNA classes as “second cousins” — pretty close relatives of mine, according to my genes.I’ve never seen these people.And this is a caveat for the AncestryDNA kit. Your DNA might kick up matches with people you’ve never seen before, but if you want to fit them into your family tree, you need to subscribe to the other side of the Ancestry business to pore over how you might, potentially, be related to one another.  dnastoryMy ethnicity estimate had me at a 0 to 1 percent chance of having genetic heritage in Benin/Togo Jackson Ryan Digital DNA trailIn January, Buzzfeed News reported that FamilyTreeDNA, another huge provider of at-home DNA kits, had given the FBI access to its database of over a million profiles. The company provides the FBI with the ability to upload genetic profiles from crime scenes to FamilyTree’s database, which may aid them in genetically hunting down criminals. However, FamilyTree didn’t notify users that their genetic information might be used this way before giving the FBI access. And while there have been high-profile, beneficial uses for law enforcement — the apprehension in 2018 of a suspect in the Golden State Killer case, for example — it does raise issues about how this highly personal information may be shared in the future. Particularly concerning is the idea that you don’t even have to share your own DNA data for it to become searchable because your third cousin has already uploaded their own profile. It’s your data, you should be able to do with it what you want. Barry Starr The technology to perform this task has improved dramatically over the last two decades, driving the costs of DNA sequencing down from $10,000 in 2011 to $1,000 in 2017, according to the US National Human Genome Research Institute. Those advances have trickled through to the commercial sector, allowing a myriad of companies, from startups to huge public organizations, to develop their own at-home DNA testing kits.Kits provide customers with an estimation of their genetic histories, ancestries and even potential health issues they might run into. But going from a saliva sample to a genetic history solution is a complex process involving overwhelming amounts of data and statistical analyses that often confound more than they clarify. “There is a general lack of knowledge about how the whole process of ancestry testing works,” Curtis says. “People’s perceptions of the results might be different from the way a genetic scientist might interpret the results.”I’m pretty well versed in the complexities of molecular biology, but after sending my spittle away I become acutely aware that I have no idea how AncestryDNA’s test works. I know it’ll give me an “ethnicity estimate” and tell me my “DNA story,” but beyond the marketing buzzwords I’m in the dark.Science, math and dataAncestryDNA uses a database that contains more than 16,000 reference DNA samples from 43 regions around the world. About 12,000 of these samples come from Ancestry users who opt in and allow the company to use their DNA for research purposes, while the remaining reference samples come from public databases such as the 1000 Genomes Project.”We find people with long family histories from a certain part of the world and we analyze their DNA, and their DNA becomes, by definition, 100 percent from the region” says Barry Starr, director of scientific communications at AncestryDNA. The science of it is complex: The procedure splits up a DNA sample into 1,001 different “windows,” as Starr calls them. All up, those 1,001 windows look at approximately 700,000 spots in the DNA code. When you take the test, every window is compared to the 1,001 windows in a reference sample, and that occurs for each of AncestryDNA’s 43 regions.If 500 of those windows match, say, a Canadian region, then by AncestryDNA’s definition, I am 50 percent Canadian. Sci-Tech “It really is cutting-edge science, and as the field advances we advance with it and so provide updates to consumers when we have made changes based on the progression of the science,” says Starr.CNET rates AncestryDNA as having one of the best kits available, in large part thanks to its huge database. But testing doesn’t just rely on database size — where the data comes from is also important. Almost 75 percent of AncestryDNA’s ethnic regions skew toward European descent, so detailed estimates of ethnicity from other regions is difficult to obtain at present. A study, published in Nature in 2016, suggested that the scientific inquiry into genomes was also suffering from bias.With fewer reference samples from both consumers and scientific research available in regions of Africa and Asia, accurate estimates for genetic heritage in those locations are more prone to error. “Everyone started out in Africa, and a small set of them moved out of Africa and colonized the world,” explains Starr. “The genetic diversity within Africa is huge compared to the rest of the world, which means you need larger reference panels.”And the results of different genealogy tests may show marked differences. For instance, 23AndMe, a rival genealogy company based in California, has a more extensive catalogue of East Asian regions than AncestryDNA. Providing DNA samples to both companies could lead to completely different ethnicity estimates. It’s not that your DNA has changed — but the different databases and algorithms used to calculate it have. ancestrydnakit-3crop Ian Knighton/CNET My DNA storyI’m not exactly sure where I come from.An educated guess would say this impressively pale skin hails from a region localized entirely within Britain. There could be some Scottish in there. Maybe a hint of Irish, too. I don’t think there’s lots of room for suspense or intrigue here.Four weeks after I spat in a tube, my email chimes. Your AncestryDNA results are in!last_img read more

Tata Motors subsidiary Jaguar Land Rover to hire 5000 staff in Britain

first_imgPhoto taken on July 6, 2016 shows the displayed Jaguar XE car at the 7th International Auto Exhibition 2016 in Xi’an, capital of northwest China’s Shaanxi Province.IANSBritain’s biggest carmaker Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) will hire 5,000 staff as it boosts its skills in autonomous and electric technology, a welcome business endorsement as Prime Minister Theresa May starts Brexit talks after a botched election.JLR, which employs more than 40,000 people globally, said it would hire 1,000 electronic and software engineers as well as 4,000 additional personnel including in manufacturing, most of whom will be based in Britain.The recruitment process will take place over the next 12 months, during Britain’s talks to leave the European Union, which carmakers have warned must result in a deal which retains free and unfettered trade to protect jobs.May lost her parliamentary majority in the June 8 general election that her Conservatives fought on the promise of a clean break with the EU single market and customs union.The renewed political uncertainty has seen business confidence tumble in recent days, according to surveys and business groups.Hours before the talks were due to begin in Brussels, the heads of the UK’s biggest business lobbies called on the government to engage “continuously” with UK business interests and strike a deal that preserves the benefits of EU membership including tariff-free trade, guarantees for EU citizens living in the UK and minimal customs formalities.Finance minister Philip Hammond said leaving the EU without an agreement would be a “very, very bad outcome for Britain” and he wanted an exit that would support employment and investment.”When I talk about a Brexit that supports British jobs, British investment and British business I mean a Brexit that avoids those cliff edges,” Hammond said in an interview with BBC television on Sunday.JLR, which is owned by India’s Tata Motors, will build its first electric vehicle, the I-PACE, in Austria but has said it wants to build such models in Britain if conditions such as support from government and academia are met.Automakers are racing to produce greener cars and improve charge times in a bid to meet rising customer demand and fulfil air quality targets but Britain lacks sufficient manufacturing capacity, an area ministers have said they want to build up.JLR, which builds just under a third of Britain’s 1.7 million cars, has said half of all its new models will be available in an electric version by the end of the decade, requiring new skills among its staff.last_img read more

China castigates US over warship sailby in Taiwan Strait

first_imgFlags of China and USAChina said Thursday it had lodged a protest with Washington after two US warships sailed through the Taiwan Strait amid rising tensions between the two powers.The US Navy said the USS Preble, a destroyer, and USNS Walter S Diehl, a supply ship, conducted a routine transit “in accordance with international law” on Wednesday.”The ships’ transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the US commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific,” the navy said.”The US Navy will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows.”US warships periodically conduct “freedom of navigation” exercises in the narrow waterway separating the Chinese mainland and Taiwan, triggering angry responses from Beijing every time.Beijing views any ships passing through the strait as essentially breaching its sovereignty, while the US and many other nations view the route as international waters open to all.”We have lodged solemn representations with the US,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a regular press briefing.The sail-by comes on top of tensions between the United States and China over trade and US efforts to thwart Chinese telecom giant Huawei over security concerns.The transit also comes as the US, Japan, South Korea and Australia kicked off operation “Pacific Vanguard” near Guam, bringing together more than 3,000 sailors from the four countries.Drills will focus on “live fire exercises, defensive counter-air operations, anti-submarine warfare, and replenishment at sea,” the US 7th Fleet said.In April, Beijing said its navy warned off a French warship that had entered the Taiwan Strait and lodged an official complaint with Paris.China sees Taiwan as part of its territory to be reunified, despite the two sides being ruled separately since the end of a civil war on the mainland in 1949.The US diplomatically recognises China over Taiwan, but remains the island’s chief military ally and arms supplier.For the Guam naval drills, Australia has contributed two frigates, Japan two destroyers and South Korea one destroyer. The USS Blue Ridge, the 7th Fleet’s flagship, will lead the operation from the US side.Home to more than 160,000 people, Guam was at the centre of nuclear tensions between Washington and Pyongyang in 2017, with North Korea threatening to hit the US territory with “enveloping fire”.last_img read more

UPDATE Small Caribbean Islands To Get Hit From Irma

first_img11:05 a.m.Tropical Storm Jose has formed in the open Atlantic far from land.Jose is located to the east of Hurricane Irma, which is a powerful and dangerous storm heading toward Antigua and perhaps the U.S.Jose is the 10th tropical storm of the season. It has maximum sustained winds of 40 mph (65 kph) and is about 1505 miles (2420 kilometers) east of the Lesser Antilles.___10:55 a.m.The Dutch government says it is sending about 100 marines to the Caribbean island of St. Maarten to help prepare it and two other small islands for the arrival of Category 5 Hurricane Irma.The government said Tuesday that the first marines were flown from the island of Aruba to St. Maarten in a coast guard plane. Some then traveled on to St. Eustatius and Saba.Two Dutch navy ships based in the Caribbean also are sailing toward the islands to provide help assessing damage and repairing vital infrastructure after Irma has passed.St. Maarten is an independent former Dutch colony that still relies on the Netherlands for defense and foreign relations issues. St. Eustatius and Saba are overseas municipalities of the Netherlands.St. Maarten has a population of around 37,000, Saba has 2,000 residents and St. Eustatius has about 3,200.___10:45 a.m.Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello says he has spoken to White House Chief of Staff John Kelly as he seeks to have a state of emergency declared in the U.S. island territory due to Hurricane Irma.Rossello thanks Kelly in a tweet for “the attention given to Puerto Rico” as the storm approaches.Puerto Rico has announced a number of steps in preparation for the storm, including a 24-hour ban on the sale of alcohol starting 6 a.m. Wednesday.The government has also dispatched inspectors to stores throughout the territory to check for possible price-gouging.___9:50 a.m.The governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands says he has submitted an emergency declaration to the White House due to the approach of Hurricane Irma and is urging residents of the territory to take the storm seriously.Gov. Kenneth Mapp says in a news briefing that he doesn’t want to frighten anyone but that forecasters predict the storm could skirt the territory or even pass directly over it.Mapp says people in the islands may start to feel the storm’s effects around midmorning Wednesday.___8:35 a.m.American Airlines has added extra flights out of two Caribbean islands to get people out of the path of Hurricane Irma, a powerful Category 5 storm.The flights were added in St. Maarten and St. Kitts and Nevis. Those are in addition to regularly scheduled flights Tuesday and Wednesday to Miami.Both islands are part of the northern Leeward Islands and are under a hurricane warning as Irma approaches the region Tuesday.American says it expects to make additional flight changes as it monitors the storm.___8 a.m.Hurricane Irma has strengthened into a Category 5 storm as it roared toward the northeast Caribbean on a path toward the U.S.Irma’s maximum sustained winds increased to 175mph (280 kph) early Tuesday. It was centered about 270 miles (440 kilometers) east of Antigua and moving west at 14 mph (22 kph).Authorities warned that the storm could dump up to 10 inches (25 centimeters) of rain, cause landslides and flash floods and generate waves of up to 23 feet (7 meters). Government officials began evacuations in certain islands.Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello warned that all decisions taken in the next couple of hours would make a difference between life and death.States of emergency were declared in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and all of Florida. Share APThis Monday, Sept. 4, 2017, satellite image provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows Hurricane Irma nearing the eastern Caribbean. Hurricane Irma grew into a powerful Category 4 storm Monday. (NOAA via AP)The Latest on Hurricane Irma:4:35 p.m.Some small Caribbean islands are bracing for a big hit from Hurricane Irma.Forecasters say those in the path of the Category 5 storm include tiny Anguilla as well as the islands of Barbuda and Anegada. All will be near or directly in the path of Irma.Anguilla is British Island territory of about 15,000 people. It is a low-lying island known for its smooth sandy beaches.Authorities are expecting the eye of Irma to pass directly over Anguilla early Wednesday.Disaster Management agency Director Melissa Meade says Anguilla is expecting the full force of the storms with winds of 185 mph. They also expect storm surge and flooding.Meade says four shelters are opening on the island Tuesday though people tend to stay with friends and family.___4:10 p.m.Florida Gov. Rick Scott is ordering the suspension of road tolls across the state as Hurricane Irma continues its ominous move toward the region.Scott says tolls will be suspended to keep traffic flowing as residents begin to evacuate coastal areas in the potential path of the dangerous Category 5 storm.The governor adds that tolls will remain suspended “for the duration of the storm’s impacts to Florida.”Several important Florida highways are toll roads including the Florida Turnpike, which runs from 60 miles north of Orlando all the way to Miami-Dade County.___4:05 p.m.The University of Central Florida has moved its football game against Memphis up a day as a precaution due Hurricane Irma.The UCF athletic department says the home game will be played Friday at 6:30 p.m. at Spectrum Stadium in Orlando.The American Athletic Conference opener was originally scheduled for Saturday at 8 p.m.The school also announced Tuesday that there will be no tailgating. Parking lots and the stadium will open for fans at 5 p.m.___4:00 p.m.Water and basic foodstuffs are flying off the shelves of some stores in Florida as residents stock up ahead of Hurricane Irma.Pablo Rodriguez surveyed the empty water aisle at a Fort Lauderdale Winn Dixie with dismay, saying “I was hoping to get a few cases.”The 65-year-old said he would have to try other shops, because “all the people are stocking up quick.”Theresa Webster, 60, of Fort Lauderdale had heard water was sold out at Publix but still available at Winn Dixie, but there was none by the time she got there in the afternoon.She was also stocking up on canned tuna, crackers and bread.Said Webster: “I got some water already but I wanted more.”3:30 p.m.Hurricane Irma is the most powerful storm ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean.The U.S. National Hurricane Center says the Category 5 storm has winds of up to 185 mph (297 kph) as it approaches the Leeward Islands of the northeast Caribbean.Four other storms have had winds that strong in the overall Atlantic region, but they have been in the Caribbean Sea or the Gulf of Mexico where the usually warmer waters fuel tropical cyclones.Hurricane Allen hit 190 mph in 1980, while 2005’s Wilma, 1988’s Gilbert and a 1935 great Florida Key storm all had 185 mph winds.Experts say Irma’s strength is a result of unusually warm water for that part of the Atlantic.___3:15 p.m.Miami-Dade County’s mayor says residents and visitors should be prepared to evacuate Miami Beach and most of the county’s coastal areas as Hurricane Irma heads toward Florida.Mayor Carlos Gimenez says the voluntary evacuations could begin as soon as Wednesday evening.Gimenez activated the emergency operation center and urged residents to have three days’ worth of food and water. The mayor reminded residents that tap water was a good resource, telling them to fill up bottles with tap water now.Evacuation will begin Wednesday morning for special needs residents.All Miami-Dade County offices will be closed Thursday and Friday.12:30 p.m.Officials in the Florida Keys are gearing up to get tourists and residents out of the possible path of Hurricane Irma.Monroe County spokeswoman Cammy Clark says in a news release that a mandatory evacuation for tourists will begin at sunrise Wednesday. An evacuation plan for residents is also under way but a timetable hasn’t been determined.Clark says government offices, parks and schools will close and there will be no shelters in Monroe County. The county’s three hospitals are also beginning evacuation plans.U.S. 1 is only route in and out of the island chain off the southern peninsula of Florida.Clark says residents and tourists should begin filling their tanks with fuel to prepare to drive to the mainland.#Irma is the strongest #hurricane in the Atlantic basin outside of the Caribbean Sea & Gulf of Mexico in NHC records https://t.co/tW4KeGdBFb pic.twitter.com/P8ebbQJR4k— NHC Atlantic Ops (@NHC_Atlantic) September 5, 2017___12:10 p.m.Florida Gov. Rick Scott is activating 100 members of the Florida National Guard to prepare for Hurricane Irma.Scott says in a statement that the initial 100 troops will be stationed throughout the state. Some 7,000 National Guard members will report to duty Friday, when the storm could be bearing down on Florida.Scott said Tuesday that the exact path of the storm is still unknown but officials “must prepare for the worst.”On Monday he declared a state of emergency in all of Florida’s 67 counties.Two hurricanes hit the state last year but neither was as powerful as Category 5 Irma is right now.National Weather ServiceIrma’s latest trajectory.___11:25 a.m.Antigua’s airport has closed with an ominous statement from local authorities as Hurricane Irma approaches the Caribbean island.The statement from the V.C. Bird International Airport says it is shutting down Tuesday and advises all visitors and residents of the two-island nation of Antigua and Barbuda to seek protection from the “onslaught” of the Category 5 storm.It closes with: “May God protect us all.”The center of the storm was expected to start passing north of Antigua and near or over Barbuda on Tuesday night.last_img read more

Investigation of Fatal Explosion at Gas Drilling Rig Owned by Houston Company

first_img Share U.S. Chemical Safety BoardThis photo shows the wreckage of the Patterson-UTI Drilling rig after a deadly January 2018 explosion.A federal investigation of an explosion and fire that occurred in January and that killed five workers at an Oklahoma natural gas drilling rig owned by a Houston-based company has made new findings.The explosion may have started after natural gas escaped from the well and safety equipment failed to prevent it, State Impact Oklahoma reported.Patterson-UTI Drilling owns the rig and new findings from the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB) suggest the accident occurred after workers removed pipe from the well.Investigators said that more than 100 barrels of drilling fluid were pushed into the drilling site’s mud pits before the blowout, far above levels that should have triggered alarms — and a strong indicator natural gas was flowing into the wellbore.Lead investigator Lauren Grim said the agency is examining the blowout preventer, a last-chance device used to shut down an uncontrollable well. “We are analyzing the data and testing the equipment to identify why the blowout preventer did not function,” she said.Investigators are also scrutinizing other equipment and crew experience, training and communication to see if proper procedures were followed and if workers missed any warning signs before the explosion and fire.The agency is also working to determine what ignited the fire.Fined by OSHAIn July, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited and fined Patterson-UTI Drilling and two Oklahoma City firms, Crescent Consulting and Skyline Directional Drilling, for improperly operating a heat lamp near the combustible opening of the well.OSHA also cited and fined Patterson-UTI Drilling and Crescent Consulting for not maintaining proper controls during drilling.The CSB investigation is expected to continue for months. A final report could include recommendations for industry and regulators.In a statement released after the agency updated its findings, a Patterson-UTI Drilling spokesperson said the company is cooperating with the investigation, will work to understand any related recommendations and is committed to workplace safety.At least three wrongful death lawsuits have been filed over the accident. Michael Lyons, an attorney who represents the family of one of the men killed, said the new information showed the accident “was 100 percent preventable.” “This disaster was the product of multiple failures to adhere to safe oilfield drilling practices,” Lyons said.last_img read more

Nelson Mandela New Wax Figure at Madame Tussauds

first_imgMadame Tussauds Washington, D.C. celebrates the life of Nelson Mandela with a wax figure of the social and political icon. To remember his life and recognize the two years since his tragic passing, his wax figure will be placed next to the historic “Free Mandela” Sidewalk Slab located on the George Washington University’s campus, H Street, Between 22nd and 21st Streets NW, on Dec. 4 from noon – 2 p.m. For more information, visit madametussaudsdc.com or call 202-942-7300.last_img

2 Officers Cleared in Gray Case to Receive Back Pay

first_imgTwo Baltimore police officers are getting back pay after being cleared of criminal charges in the death of a young Black man whose neck was broken in a police vanSgt. Alicia White and Officer William Porter will receive $96,855 and $70,523 respectively. They were suspended without pay after being charged with felony manslaughter in the April 2015 death of Freddie Gray. The Board of Estimates was scheduled to approve the payments on Aug. 24.In this July 27, 2016, file photo, with a mural depicting Freddie Gray in the background, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, center, speaks during a news conference after her office dropped remaining charges against the three Baltimore police officers who were still awaiting trial in Freddie Gray’ death in Baltimore. Baltimore police officers routinely discriminate against blacks, repeatedly use excessive force and are not adequately held accountable for misconduct, according to a harshly critical Justice Department report being presented Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2016. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark, File)White and Porter were among six officers charged in Gray’s death. Prosecutors dropped all the cases after three of them were acquitted.The Board of Estimates previously approved nearly $127,000 in back pay for Lt. Brian Rice, the highest-ranking officer in the group, and about $87,700 for Officer Caesar Goodson, who drove the van where Gray’s neck was broken and faced the most serious charge, of second-degree murder.The four officers had been suspended without pay since May 1, 2015, when State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced felony charges against them. Two others, Edward Nero and Garrett Miller, were suspended with pay because they faced only misdemeanors.Gray’s family received a $6.4 million settlement after his death in police custody touched off protests and rioting and became a rallying cry for the national Black Lives Matter movement.None of the six officers have been reinstated to the force, pending an internal investigation. At the request of Commissioner Kevin Davis, two outside departments, from Montgomery and Howard counties, are participating in this review.last_img read more

Calls for Respect for Black America at Franklin Funeral

first_imgBy ERRIN HAINES WHACK, AP National WriterDETROIT (AP) — As Aretha Franklin was remembered at her funeral Friday as a proud Black woman who also used her magnificent voice to stand up for the Black community she loved, several speakers used the moment to continue to demand respect for Black America.Amid the gospel, personal reflections and grief were calls to register and turnout to vote in November and condemnation of President Donald Trump, who, upon her death, referred to Franklin as “someone who worked for me” — a comment that rankled many African-Americans.Michael Eric Dyson speaks during the funeral service for Aretha Franklin at Greater Grace Temple, Friday, Aug. 31, 2018, in Detroit. Franklin died Aug. 16, 2018 of pancreatic cancer at the age of 76. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)“No — she used to perform for you,” the Rev. Al Sharpton said to cheers and applause from the crowd. “She worked for us. Aretha never took orders from nobody but God.”Franklin’s civil rights legacy was mentioned often during the eight-hour service, and was tied to her faith and roots in the Black church. Many also mentioned her father, the Rev. C.L. Franklin, and his civil rights leadership, which influenced his daughter from a young age.Late Friday, Franklin was laid to rest in a mausoleum at Woodlawn Cemetery, the final resting place of her father.None of the politicians present — including former President Bill Clinton and former Attorney General Eric Holder — took the opportunity to turn the event partisan. Michigan Democratic House Rep. Brenda Lawrence took a moment to recognize Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain, whose funeral is Saturday.But others seized on Trump’s comments and Franklin’s message of dignity to speak to the present social and political climate. In pointing out the long lines to pay tribute to Franklin this week, the Rev. Jesse Jackson lamented that the lines to vote often aren’t nearly as long.“Aretha was on the battleground for 60 years,” Jackson told the audience. “We have long lines to celebrate death, and short lines for voting. Something is missing. If you leave here today and don’t register to vote, you’re dishonoring Aretha.”Judge Greg Mathis, one of Franklin’s many friends who often talked politics with her, said that his last conversation with Franklin earlier this summer was about the ongoing water crisis in Flint, Michigan, where government negligence has left residents living with lead-tainted water since 2014.“Her last words to me … were “‘Go back up there and sock it to ’em!,’” Mathis told the crowd before vowing that he would in her memory.Some made a statement without saying a word. When she was shouted out from the stage, California Democrat Rep. Maxine Waters — who has called frequently for Trump’s impeachment and is a campaign rally punching bag for the president — acknowledged the crowd with the “Wakanda salute,” from the movie “Black Panther,” closing her fists and crossing her arms over her chest to applause.Many in the audience, including President Clinton, stood and cheered.“Everybody just point over there and tell her, ‘We got your back!’” said Bishop Charles H. Ellis III, pastor of Greater Grace Temple, which the audience shouted in Waters’ direction.Georgetown University sociologist Michael Eric Dyson took several shots at Trump in his remarks, assigning the president several nicknames: “orange apparition,” ”lugubrious leech,” ”doppleganger of deceit and deceit,” ”lethal liar,” ”dimwitted dictator,” ”foolish fascist.”“She ain’t work for you,” Dyson shouted over applause. “She worked above you. She worked beyond you. Get your preposition right.”Whack is The Associated Press’ national writer on race and ethnicity. Follow her work on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/emarvelous.last_img read more

Fire breaks out at Priya Cinema no casualties

first_imgKolkata: Fire broke out at the first floor of Priya Cinema Hall, one of the premier movie theatres of the city, at around 10:15 pm on Sunday. According to initial reports, the heater of a momo counter has been said to be the cause behind the mishap.Five fire engines rushed to the spot and brought the blaze under control. The owner of the theatre Arijit Dutta, along with four of his family members were rescued from the building. Rescue work is still underway. However, no casualties have been reported as of now. Mayor Sovan Chatterjee visited the spot soon after the incident and surveyed the area and the extent of damage.Preliminary investigation has revealed that the momo counter which caught fire, did not have enough fire extinguishers in supply. A forensic team is likely to visit the spot on Monday morning.last_img read more

Costa Rica targets undiscovered destinations at 35th annual Expotur

first_img Share By: Vawn Himmelsbach SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA — Costa Rica has built its tourism industry on ecotourism and soft adventure. But at this year’s 35th anniversary of Expotur, one of the most important travel marts in Latin America, the focus was on showcasing new consumer offerings.“We are very proud of what we have accomplished as a tourist destination,” said Maria Amalia Revelo, Costa Rica’s Minister of Tourism, during a press conference. But, she added, “we know we still have a lot of work to do.”Organized by the Costa Rican Association of Professionals in Tourism (ACOPROT), this year’s travel mart featured 230 purchasers with delegates from 35 countries, showcasing many of the country’s micro, small and mid-size businesses.The U.S. and Canada are considered priority markets, bringing in the highest number of tourists, though ACOPROT is further developing the European market, as well as the South American countries of Chile, Argentina and Brazil. Tags: adventure, Costa Rica, tourism, undiscovered, wildlife Costa Rica targets ‘undiscovered’ destinations at 35th annual Expotur Built on public-private partnerships, Costa Rica’s tourism industry has, for the most part, taken a consistent strategy for the past 25 years.“It wasn’t easy — we took one step forward and two steps back. But in the end we managed to agree that sustainable tourism was going to help us as a country, and Costa Rica has been successful because we’ve been very consistent,” said Revelo (through a Spanish-to-English translator). “We don’t change strategies because a new government comes in.” Ecotourism has been a natural fit, since Costa Rica is home to 5% of the world’s biodiversity, making it popular with nature-lovers, bird-watchers and conservationists. But while tourism is built around the country’s natural assets, “we have decided to try to add more value to other cultural aspects like gastronomy,” said Revelo.About one-third of tourists who come to Costa Rica by air are return visitors, she said. But many tourists go to the same places: Arenal volcano, the cloud forests of Monteverde and the beaches along the northern Pacific Coast.More news:  Onex paying big to get WestJet and that will send airfares soaring, says CWT“I think that our idiosyncrasy is what makes tourists fall in love with this country and this is proven by the data of people who come back to the country, and coming back at different stages of their lives,” said Revelo.That’s why the country’s national tourism strategy — along with local tour operators — is focused on promoting the ‘undiscovered’ areas of Costa Rica, particularly to repeat visitors, while maintaining its commitment to sustainability.One such area highlighted at this year’s Expotur was Puntarenas — both a city and a province — on the central Pacific Coast. As the gateway to Costa Rica’s Gulf Islands, it’s only a 90-minute drive from the capital, San Jose.Billy Johnson, marketing manager of Vista Los Suenos Adventure Park, was at Expotur promoting the Central Pacific region, which he says has a lot of offer Canadians. While there’s much to see in the popular tourist destinations of Costa Rica, he believes the central Pacific Coast is an untapped region, and in the past year his company started offering day tours (with a choice of activities) directly from San Jose.The adventure park offers ziplining, ATVing and horseback riding, but it’s only three kilometres from the beach so visitors can also take surf lessons. “That’s very different than going to a place in the mountains because you only will be doing those [mountain] activities,” said Johnson.Aside from soft adventure, the central Pacific Coast is quieter, naturally lending itself to nature-based resorts and activities. In Puntarenas, for example, there are plenty of wildlife sanctuaries — but without the crowds and long queues.Outside the city of Puntarenas, for example, is Natuwa Wildlife Sanctuary, which rescues, rehabilitates and releases scarlet and great green macaws back into the wild. But it also provides refuge for other animals, such as monkeys, tapirs, ocelots and sloths, many of which eventually return to their natural habitat. For visitors, it’s a chance to see these animals in a natural setting and support conservation work.More news:  Consolidation in the cruise industry as PONANT set to acquire Paul Gauguin CruisesIn Curú National Wildlife Refuge, on the southern Nicoya Peninsula, it’s relatively easy to spot white-faced monkeys, white-tailed deer, collared peccary, coati and tropical birds. These species live in the wild, but the refuge is managed sustainably to protect threatened and endangered forested habitats, such as mangroves and tropical forests.There are several walking trails throughout Curú, ranging from easy to difficult; Sendero Finca de Los Monos is considered one of the best trails for spotting birds and small mammals.The region also offers Costa Rica’s only private-island resort, located in the Gulf of Nicoya. Isla Chiquita is a glamping resort with 15 tent suites and one new master tent suite that opened in February. The resort works with Canadian travel agents and offers meal plans, according to resident manager Jason Barahona.Isla Chiquita is designed as a back-to-nature getaway with no motorized vehicles and access to eco-adventures on land and sea, from ocean kayaking to artisan fishing, sunset cruising and beach hopping. But it can also accommodate groups and even corporate events.Back on the peninsula is Tambor Tropical, an adults-only boutique beach resort that offers a quiet escape on Tambor Bay — one of the country’s premiere bird-watching locales.“The advantage of being a small destination is we can still locally try to build it without having anything too large,” said general manager Juan Carlos Cruz. Activities include bird-watching and a turtle rescue program. “We have released over the last two years 17,000 baby turtles, so we’re trying to do activities that are nature-oriented, but they also have to be feasible [for the local community].”Expotur takes place annually; this year, the travel mart received a certificate of carbon neutrality for the fourth consecutive year. Tuesday, May 28, 2019 << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Vodafone España has made its TV service available

first_imgVodafone España has made its TV service available via Samsung smart TVs, enabling users of Samsung 2017 and later models to access all the Vodafone TV services they subscribe to on the TV without the need for a set-top box.Vodafone said that Samsung smart TV users would be able to access full seasons of their favourite series, thousands of movies in all genres, and a broad on-demand catalogue that also spans kids, sports and music titles as well as seven-day catch-up and startover TV.Vodafone TV users can access content via up to four devices including smartphones, tablets PC and smart TV, enabling them to use Samsung devices as a secondary platform. They can access content simultaneously on two devices.Qualifying viewers need to have a Samsung TV from 2017 or later that is connected to the internet via WiFi or Ethernet, to be able to access the Samusng Smart Hub app store and to have an active Vodafone multiscreen account.last_img read more

Making money is first and foremost about backing t

first_imgMaking money is first and foremost about backing the right people.Next, it’s about timing.Casey Research readers have had great success by identifying, following, and backing up-and-coming stars. The best of the best in the business.          In this video, Louis James from Casey Research introduces you to two innovators of tomorrow.These are two people whom smart investors are following very closely.last_img

With guest host John DonvanFor several months th

first_imgWith guest host John Donvan.For several months, the Childrens Health Insurance Program (CHIP) was in limbo. Its budget expired and Congress took no action to reauthorize it. Then, relief came as part of the bill that ended the government shutdown last week.But the future of another vital health service remains uncertain. The more than 10,000 community health centers that treat low-income Americans have not seen a funding reauthorization.The centers, funded by the Affordable Care Act, retain bipartisan support, The Hill quotes Republican Senator Tom Cole saying “I certainly didn’t support Obamacare but I think one of the good provisions was the expansion of the community health centers … I think they’re a wonderful model. They’re a much cheaper way to deliver care to people that really need it. So, again, I think there is a commitment there to find a solution.”What will become of the centers where an estimated one in 13 Americans gets care?GUESTSJames Macrae, Associate Administrator, Bureau of Primary Health Care,Health Resources and Services Administration,U.S. Department of Health and Human ServicesLeighton Ku, Professor and Director of the Center for Health Policy Research, Milken Institute School of Public Health, George Washington UniversityDan Hawkins, Senior VP of Public Policy & Research,National Association of Community Health CentersKim Wagenaar, Chief Executive Officer, Cabarrus Rowan Community Health CentersFor more, visit https://the1a.org.© 2018 WAMU 88.5 – American University Radio. Copyright 2018 WAMU 88.5. To see more, visit WAMU 88.5.last_img read more

At my babys sixmonth appointment a few months ba

first_imgAt my baby’s six-month appointment a few months back, I got a one-pager from the pediatrician titled “Starting Solid Foods.””It is critical that the baby develop a taste for rice cereal at the beginning, to offset the loss of iron from formula or breast milk,” it reads.Sounds serious. Then come the all caps: “THE FIRST TWO WEEKS OF FEEDING GIVE RICE CEREAL ONLY.” That is followed by advice to introduce pureed vegetables before fruits so the baby doesn’t develop a sweet tooth.I obediently went out and bought some sand-textured baby cereal. (Organic, of course.)”Oh no, we’re not doing that.” My spouse pointed me to a parenting book we had on the shelf. “There’s no need for cereals alone; they are bland and bulky and their iron benefits are overstated,” it reads. “The idea that you should introduce vegetables before fruits to avoid creating a sweet tooth is just an unfounded myth. A carrot has virtually the same amount of sugar as an apple.”Welcome to early parenthood’s barrage of contradictory advice. It tends to be detailed, with convincing internal logic. “Studies” are often invoked. And the stakes feel so high — like, if I do this wrong, will my baby be malnourished or end up a picky eater or not succeed in life somehow?Enter Brown University economics professor Emily Oster and her new book, Cribsheet: A Data-Driven Guide to Better, More Relaxed Parenting, From Birth to Preschool. It’s the follow-up to her first book, Expecting Better, a deep look at the data behind pregnancy advice, which has a bit of a cult following. (I am in this cult.)In her new book, Oster ticks through big and small parenting dilemmas. She uses her training as an economist to look at the relevant research for each of them and to assess how much stock we should put in the findings.”What I do in the book is actually try to comb through these studies and figure out which of them are giving us the best information,” Oster says. “So then you can make these choices having the best information, not just the first thing that comes up when you Google it at 3 o’clock in the morning.”OK, so what about my solid-food dilemma? Yea or nay on rice cereal? Veggies first?”It turns out there isn’t any evidence to suggest that is a particularly important way to introduce foods or not,” she says. The answer to this one: You do you. Keep the food mushy, and don’t stress about it too much.This wasn’t my only point of confusion that this book cleared up, even though I’m nearly four years into parenthood. Here are a few of my personal takeaways.Nipple confusion is not a thing — you don’t need to wait three weeks after birth to give a pacifier or bottle. (This makes me feel better about giving my firstborn a pacifier on day two.)Baby milestones have a wide normal range, so don’t obsess. (Still vaguely worried that by nine months my baby should be clapping.)Breastfeeding does not help mom lose weight. (Crushed.)A lot of the other takeaways are kind of nuanced. They don’t give you a clear-cut answer, so much as information to help you make your own decision. One reason for that is designing a good study of the risks and benefits of a parenting decision is really hard. Take, for example, Chapter 4: “Breast Is Best? Breast Is Better? Breast Is About the Same?” Oster provides a path through the maze of conflicting advice by sifting out the convincing studies from the questionable ones.”Most of the studies on this are done by comparing the kids whose moms breastfeed to the kids whose moms don’t,” Oster says. “The issue with that is that the kind of moms who breastfeed are different than the moms who don’t, on average. So, in the U.S. in particular, moms who breastfeed tend to be better educated, higher income, more likely to be married.”(It’s unclear why that demographic breastfeeds more, Oster says, but the timing for the trend is connected to the public health push away from formula that began in the 1970s.) Now, let’s say you want to find out the impact of breastfeeding — and not of these demographic differences — on things like IQ and obesity.”When we narrow in on some studies that are better — like, for example, studies that compare siblings, where one sibling is breastfed and one sibling is not — those studies do not show the same kinds of impacts on long-term things like obesity or IQ,” Oster says.For the record, she found that there are some health benefits to breastfeeding, but they’re more limited than the hype. If it works for you and your family, Oster concludes, great; if not, formula is a good option.So, even if you’ve made a decision about how to introduce solids and whether to breastfeed or bottle-feed, there are so many other ones to make! What about baby nap schedules, how to potty train or the financial impact of choosing a nanny versus day care versus staying at home?As an economist, Oster advocates for taking some of the angst out of it. When making a parenting decision, she says, “Step one is to kind of really figure out what the best evidence says about the choice.” Look for randomized studies and big sample sizes.”But then there’s a really important second step, which is to combine that with what is going to work for your family,” she says.For instance, when she first brought her baby daughter home, she knew the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that your baby sleep in your room, ideally for the whole first year, as part of its safe infant sleeping environment guidance.”My husband did one day with our older daughter, and he was like, ‘I can’t believe it’s making those noises.’ He just couldn’t do it. He wouldn’t sleep,” she says. Room sharing for a full year was just not workable for her family.With Cribsheet, Oster is trying to make parents less confused, more confident in their choices and less judgmental of other parents who make different choices. Reading the book makes that feel surprisingly achievable. Laying out the research really strips these decisions of their drama, and you end up wondering why it all felt so overwhelming in the first place.When the time came to break out the solid foods with my baby, we did mashed sweet potato. A few months into it, emboldened by Oster’s book, we’ve gotten adventurous: This weekend at our Seder, baby even had a bit of brisket smushed up with horseradish. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more

Tributes have been paid to Stephen Hawking the wo

first_imgTributes have been paid to Stephen Hawking, the world-renowned physicist and “disability icon” who was seen by many disabled people as a hugely-important role model, who died this week.Among the disabled people who highlighted the importance of his achievements was the political journalist Dr Frances Ryan, who said on Twitter: “Growing up disabled in Britain, you don’t get many role models.“But seeing a genius, witty and kind Prof gain the world’s respect from his wheelchair meant something. All of us know we can reach for the stars.”Professor Tom Shakespeare, professor of disability research at Norwich Medical School, said on Twitter that “as well as his brilliant career in Physics”, Hawking had “allied himself to the disability rights struggle time and again” and “always challenged assumptions”.He added: “Stephen Hawking showed that you could make strides, even if you couldn’t walk; that you could have a powerful voice, even if you couldn’t talk; that you could be disabled and change the world. RIP.”Another disabled campaigner, Kaliya Franklin, who tweets at @BendyGirl, said Hawking showed others that “the richness and depth of human experience is part of all [of] us, regardless of appearance or ability to speak out loud” and that he had showed that disabled people “could achieve anything, at a time when so many were still institutionalised”.There was also irritation from many disabled people at the repeated efforts of the mainstream media to hail Hawking as an “inspiration” for “overcoming” his impairment.Disabled scientist Fiona Robertson said on Twitter: “Don’t say he ‘overcame’ his illness.“He was still disabled. He was both disabled and brilliant, not ‘in spite of’.”Robertson was another who had seen Hawking as a role model.She said: “As a young teenager, my battered copy of A Brief History of Time revealed to me how much people yearn for the complexity of science, to understand reality, to connect with that awe.“As a disabled scientist, I looked to #StephenHawking to see that I still had a role to play.”She was one of many who pointed out that he was only able to be “the light of cosmology” because “he had access to medical care, social care, adaptive technology, mobility aids”.She added: “He succeeded because of his brilliance *and* his access to support.”Franklin agreed, pointing out that he was enabled to live his rich life by “the NHS, PAs to support independent living, PAs to support his work, assistive tech and most importantly, to be surrounded by people determined to ensure those things happen”.The Centre for Disability Studies at the University of Leeds highlighted “the wondrous ways Professor Hawking explained the cosmos and its complex beauty” but also how he had supported disability rights, including criticising cuts to support for disabled students and fighting to protect the NHS.Marsha de Cordova, the disabled MP and Labour’s shadow minister for disabled people, said Hawking had been “a ground-breaking physicist, a firm advocate for the NHS, and a staunch defender of the welfare state and human rights – from opposing the Vietnam war to standing up for the Palestinian people” and had “never let his disability define him”.Disability Rights UK marked Hawking’s death by reposting the speech he gave as the fourth annual Jack Ashley Memorial Lecture last October.In the lecture, he spoke about his life with motor neurone disease, and his belief in the principles of the NHS, that good care should be provided “at the point of need, to everyone, without regard for personal circumstance, or ability to pay”.He added: “It is important that care is available, without any of the added burdens for people that come with private health insurance.“My team and I have had experience of dealing with health insurance companies in the US, and that disappointing experience shows that a health insurance company will try its best not to pay.”He also spoke in the lecture of his public row with Jeremy Hunt over the health secretary’s “cherry picking” of evidence on weekend NHS care, which Hawking said was “unacceptable”.He added: “International comparisons indicate that the most efficient way to provide good health care is for services to be publicly funded, and publicly run.“The more profit is extracted from the system, the more private monopolies grow, and the more expensive health care becomes.”He also said in his lecture that disabled people “must find new ways of doing things”.He said that he had travelled internationally, visited Antarctica, dived in a submarine, and experienced gravity-free space flight, as well as writing books, appearing in television programmes, and lecturing in the Royal Albert Hall.He told the audience: “I am not showing off. I am explaining that disabled people can do anything if they have a fierce will to succeed.”But he stressed, as other disabled people did this week after hearing of his death, that his international travel “involves an entourage of dedicated assistants and nurses, and my fame protects me against some of the types of indignity that we often suffer”.last_img read more

Twitter Retweets Can Now Contain Photos Videos GIFs

first_img Image credit: via PC Mag Twitter Retweets Can Now Contain Photos, Videos, GIFs New Twitter features roll out at a snail’s pace, with the memorable big changes being the increase in character limit and the switch from stars to hearts. This week we got a smaller, but still significant change to retweets. It’s now possible to retweet with a photo, video, or GIF attached.As The Verge reports, retweeting until now has been limited to two options: a simple retweet of the original tweet, or you could retweet with a comment. It’s that second option which is being expanded to allow the inclusion of media. So clicking “Retweet with comment” will now allow you to embed a photo, a video, or a GIF.For now, the retweet tweak is limited to Twitter on Android, iOS, or the Twitter mobile website. Desktop users don’t have access to it yet and these new media-rich retweets will look a little strange on desktop until that’s fixed. Even so, it’s sure to be a welcome update by users who’d rather not be limited to text when sharing someone else’s tweet with their followers.From Twitter’s point of view, the change proved quite challenging because it was difficult to get the layout right without things looking confusing. Stacking media can make the stream of information look muddled, so Twitter needed it to be very clear how the media was linked between the two tweets. This was achieved by placing the original tweet in a smaller box below the retweet, but also indented from it. That way the retweet looks more prominent, but it’s visually quite clear it’s a response to the indented tweet below.Retweeting with media is already being used and some major brands are taking full advantage, including Game of Thrones. It’s one of those features that will soon become a natural part of retweets and we’ll all forget how limited retweeting used to be. 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List Add to Queue The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. This story originally appeared on PCMag Senior Editor Next Article center_img It’s a relatively small change for users, but apparently a really challenging new feature for Twitter to implement and get right. May 7, 2019 Twitter 2 min read Apply Now » Matthew Humphries –shareslast_img read more

Dealing With Internal Security Threats

first_img May 6, 2003 –shares Technology Next Article Add to Queue 4 min readcenter_img Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. It’s often the internal, not external, threats that pose the greatest risk to your network. Are you prepared for the worst? Dealing With Internal Security Threats Q: How easily could a nontechnical internal employee hack my company’s network?A: With all the recent press regarding the sharp rise in Internet-based external threats, is it any wonder that internal threats continue to be overlooked? Many companies today continue to focus the majority of their budgets and effort on “external” penetration and denial of service (DOS) risks. Regardless of the source, you will consistently find that internal security breaches continue to lead to external breaches by a significant majority. In fact, the risk of internal attacks is very likely to rise in the coming year due to the growth, sophistication and ease of use of hacking tools available online.For years, security professionals have commonly communicated the vulnerabilities of operating systems and network services–such as Web, e-mail, ftp and telnet–to the public in many forms. In order for would-be hackers or disgruntled employees to take advantage of these published vulnerabilities, they’d have to create application code or scripts after studying the notes of a select group of experts who originally discovered and documented the vulnerability. Taking advantage of these security holes would require a level of knowledge beyond that of many common IT administrators and the majority of nontechnical individuals. Hence, the most common threats from nontechnical internal employees have mostly been limited to a matter of improperly managed permissions, weak authentication and other administrative-level issues.Over the past year, the number of precoded exploit applications has been on the rise. The more sophisticated hackers are now writing and publishing applications that nontechnical individuals can use on UNIX or Windows PCs. These exploit applications can scan internal networks for vulnerable servers and then perform a specific exploit against the selected target.The most common type of attack used by these new applications is DOS attacks that crash production servers with little or no way to track the source of the problem. Crashing a server is a significant issue since it not only affects productivity, but can also corrupt data, causing integrity issues. The need is apparent for constant attention to security patches and fixes as well as internal auditing and/or intrusion detection systems.Internal auditing is one critical aspect of a security plan that can reduce the risk associated with these new attack tools. However, many internal-auditing projects, if they are being done at all, focus on high-level policy issues like weak passwords, directory and file permissions, and disaster-recovery procedures. Often, it is only the external audits that commonly test for the actual operating system and network service vulnerabilities being exploited by this new age of hacking tools. It is vital that the IT managers evaluating security-auditing vendors be sure that internal-auditing vendors provide a comprehensive analysis of the operating system and application vulnerabilities. Without this analysis, these new risks to business continuance and data integrity may go undetected until they directly affect the bottom line.Many managers assume that nontechnical employees do not pose a significant risk to business continuance from an information security standpoint. Unfortunately, because of the easy access to more sophisticated exploit tools, that assumption is costing business today in terms of service outages and lost revenue. Know your risks and remediation requirements by performing an internal audit before your company becomes the next victim.Michael Bruck is the founding partner of BAI Security, an 8-year-old information security consulting firm. Bruck leads his security team with a successful 16-year background in IT management and senior engineering positions. He is also the developer and author of best practices that are becoming standards in the information security consulting business. He can be reached via www.baisecurity.netor by e-mail at mbruck@baisecurity.net.The opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, not of Entrepreneur.com. All answers are intended to be general in nature, without regard to specific geographical areas or circumstances, and should only be relied upon after consulting an appropriate expert, such as an attorney or accountant.last_img read more

CopacinoFujikado Helps Brands Navigate LGBTQ Marketing Beyond Pride Month

first_img Brand Pride GuideCopacino+FujikadoLGBTQ+ communityMarketing TechnologymicrositeNews Previous ArticleStepStone Acquires Majority of US Technology Provider AppcastNext ArticleCalendar-Based Scheduling Now Available for Geopointe on Salesforce AppExchange, the World’s Leading Enterprise Cloud Marketplace Copacino+Fujikado Helps Brands Navigate LGBTQ+ Marketing Beyond Pride Month Globe NewswireJuly 2, 2019, 5:52 pmJuly 2, 2019 Seattle Creative Agency’s LGBTQ+ Employees Spearhead Pride GuideCopacino+Fujikado, an independent creative agency in Seattle, Washington, announces the launch of its first-ever Brand Pride Guide, entitled “Rainbow with a Cause.” The guide takes the form of a microsite and offers tips to brands around how to use Pride flags and their respective colors in internal and external communications, generating increased awareness across the advertising and marketing industries beyond Pride Month.“We wanted to do something coming off of Pride that reflected our personal queer identities and our identity as an agency, while educating our peers on how to reach the LGBTQ+ community in an authentic way,” said John Line, Senior Account Director at Copacino+Fujikado.Marketing Technology News: Digital Communication Tools Leave Many Workers Feeling Squeezed out by Tech-Savvy Colleagues“As a queer person in advertising, I continually see my community asking brands to do better, but I rarely see an industry perspective on how to help brands make that progress,” said Caroline Henry, Senior Copywriter at Copacino+Fujikado. “We all know slapping a rainbow on your logo doesn’t cut it; you have to communicate exactly how you’re helping the LGBTQ+ community 365 a year.”“Rainbow with a Cause” aims to do just that, helping brands navigate marketing to the LGBTQ+ community in an authentic way. It covers the history of Pride, correct Pride flag usage, and how to ensure your brand’s efforts steer clear of  “Rainbow-Washing,” or using the Pride flag purely for publicity or profit, year-round. As the guide states, “LGBTQ+ consumers are savvy and painfully aware when a brand doesn’t dive any deeper than a pretty glitter exterior.”Marketing Technology News: Selligent Marketing Cloud Study Reveal Digital Marketers Struggle to Deliver Consistent Omnichannel ExperiencesThe idea originated from Copacino+Fujikado’s LGBTQ+ employees and came into fruition with the help of the agency’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative group, EDGE, which stands for Empowering Diversity and Growing Equity. Founded in 2018, the initiative aims to empower everyone at Copacino+Fujikado and create a more diverse, equitable and inclusive culture at the agency, in its work, and beyond.Marketing Technology News: LivePerson Wins 2019 Artificial Intelligence Breakthrough Awardlast_img read more

Purdue engineers develop tiny glutamate sensors for spinal cord injuries

first_img Source:https://www.purdue.edu/newsroom/releases/2019/Q1/implant-to-better-track-brain-chemical-gone-rogue-after-neurotrauma.html Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 28 2019Your chances of getting a nasty migraine increase following a spinal cord injury, thanks to a chemical messenger in the brain that spikes to toxic levels, past studies have suggested.For treatment to get any better, researchers need to catch that split-second spike in action and closely follow its path of destruction.Purdue University engineers have built a tiny, flexible sensor that is faster and more precise than past attempts at tracking this chemical, called glutamate. The sensor, an implantable device on the spinal cord, is primarily a research tool for testing in animal models, but could find future clinical use as a way to monitor whether a drug for neurotrauma or brain disease is working.The group’s work appears in a forthcoming issue of Biosensors and Bioelectronics.”When you feel like you’re running a fever, it doesn’t matter when you check your temperature – it will probably be the same for several hours. But a glutamate spike is so fast that if you don’t capture it at that moment, you miss the whole opportunity to get data,” said Riyi Shi, a professor of neuroscience and biomedical engineering in Purdue’s Department of Basic Medical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine and Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering.Impact, such as from a car accident or tackle in football, can injure the spinal cord – also injuring the nerve structures that transport glutamate, which sends signals to excite nerve tissue for performing functions such as learning and memorizing.Damaged nerve structures means that loads of glutamate leak out into spaces outside of cells, over-exciting and damaging them. Brain diseases, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, also show elevated levels of glutamate.Devices so far either haven’t been sensitive enough to detect glutamate, fast enough to capture its spike or affordable enough for long-term research projects.Purdue researchers are addressing these issues through implantable sensors that they have 3D printed and laser-micromachined – processes that are already used regularly in the lab and industry. A YouTube video is available at https://youtu.be/hyn9SM1wdz0.Related StoriesNew therapy shows promise in preventing brain damage after traumatic brain injuryResearch team to create new technology for tackling concussionNeural pathways explain the relationship between imagination and willingness to help”We wanted to create a low-cost and very fast way to build these sensors so that we can easily provide researchers with a means to measure glutamate levels in vivo,” said Hugh Lee, a Purdue assistant professor of biomedical engineering, who focuses on implantable microtechnologies.The technique allows researchers to rapidly change the size, shape and orientation of the sensors and then test in animal models without having to go through the more expensive process of microfabrication.Measuring levels in vivo would help researchers to study how spinal cord injuries happen, as well as how brain diseases develop.”How big of a problem is a migraine? Is too much glutamate really behind the pain, or is it that the system that cleans up glutamate is down?” Shi said.The researchers implanted the device into the spinal cord of an animal model and then injured the cord to observe a spike. The device captured the spike immediately, whereas for current devices, researchers have had to wait 30 minutes to get data after damaging the spinal cord.In the future, the researchers plan to create a way for the biosensors to self-clear of inflammatory cells that the body recruits to protect itself. These cells typically form a fibrous capsule around the biosensor, which blocks its sensitivity.The technology could also allow for implanting more sensors along the spinal cord, which would help researchers to know how far glutamate spreads and how quickly.The researchers have filed a patent application for this device with the Purdue Research Foundation Office of Technology Commercialization. The work was supported by the Global Research Outreach program of the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology, the National Institutes of Health, and sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation under grant CNS-1726865.This research aligns with Purdue’s Giant Leaps celebration, acknowledging the university’s global advancements made in health, longevity and quality of life as part of Purdue’s 150th anniversary. This is one of the four themes of the yearlong celebration’s Ideas Festival, designed to showcase Purdue as an intellectual center solving real-world issues.last_img read more