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Corvus Wins Huge Battery Package Order for Hybrid Vessels

first_imgzoomIllustration of the new Havila Kystruten ships; Image Courtesy: Havyard Canadian manufacturer of energy storage systems Corvus Energy has signed a contract with Norwegian Electric Systems (NES) for the marine world’s largest battery package for hybrid-powered vessels.As informed, the technology will be installed onboard Havila Kystruten’s environmentally-friendly coastal vessels.“This is a big step for the cruising industry and we are extremely proud to receive this order… The Energy Storage System (ESS) is the world’s largest package ever delivered to a ship and will enable the vessels to enter fjords and ECAs on zero emission mode five years before the deadline,” Geir Bjørkeli, CEO of Corvus Energy, said.Corvus Energy will deliver an air-cooled ESS with Corvus’ patented single-cell thermal isolation which exceeds class requirements.“The Energy Storage System has a capacity per vessel of 6,100 kWh, which is double the capacity of any existing battery-operated vessel,” Roger Rosvold, Vice President Sales at Corvus Energy, explained. “The unused potential for using batteries on board cruise and passenger ferries is huge. Batteries reduce fuel consumption and maintenance costs, cut pollution and, with increasing environmental regulations and requirements that will incur costs for air emissions, provide a very compelling business case.”“As more and more shipowners wake up to this, we expect to see uptake accelerating across the board. The industry is just starting to understand the power of batteries,” Rosvold further said.The newbuilds are part of Havila’s contract with Norwegian Ministry of Transport for the construction of four environmentally-friendly vessels that will operate on the Bergen-Kirkenes coastal route.Two of the vessels will be built by Turkish shipbuilder Tersan and the remaining by Spanish Barreras. Featuring a length of 125 meters and a width of 20 meters, the ships will be able to accommodate 700 passengers.The vessels will have a hybrid gas-electric propulsion system with battery, where four gas-powered engines in each vessel run the generators. The system is also adapted to the next generation of technology, using hydrogen fuel cells.The equipment from Corvus Energy is scheduled for delivery in 2020 and the coastal route vessels will be in service from 2021.last_img read more

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Mississauga Markham opt out of hosting retail cannabis stores

first_imgThe Canadian Press Two Toronto-area municipalities have decided not to allow brick-and-mortar cannabis stores within their boundaries.Councillors in Mississauga and Markham voted Wednesday to opt out of hosting privately operated retail cannabis stores, which are expected to open across the province next spring.Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie says the city feels there are too many unanswered questions on cannabis stores and the province has not given municipalities any control over where the shops would be located.She says Mississauga may choose to opt in at a later date but wants to consult further with the community.Markham’s mayor, Frank Scarpitti, tweeted about the decision, saying councillors voted 12-1 to keep cannabis stores out of the city.The province gave municipalities until Jan. 22 to decide whether they want to host cannabis stores. For now, cannabis can only be bought legally in Ontario through a government-run website.last_img read more

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Bombardier swings back to profit beating expectations

MONTREAL — Bombardier Inc. says it earned a fourth-quarter profit of US$55 million compared with a loss a year ago.The plane and train maker, which keeps its books in U.S. dollars, says the profit amounted to two cents per diluted share for the quarter ended Dec. 31.That compared to a loss of $188 million or nine cents per share a year earlier.Revenue totalled $4.30 billion for the last three months of 2018, down from $4.61 billion in the final quarter of 2017.On an adjusted basis, Bombardier says it earned five cents per share for the quarter compared to an adjusted loss of two cents per share a year ago.Analysts on average had expected a profit of two cents per share for the quarter, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

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Michigans shot at No 1 bucked by Ohio State

Aaron Craft insisted all week it wasn’t about him versus Trey Burke. But with only seconds remaining in No. 15 Ohio State’s matchup against No. 2 Michigan, that’s exactly what it came down to. With 29 seconds left, OSU’s once dominating 21-point lead had been whittled down to two, and the sold-out crowd at the Schottenstein Center – some of which had been camping out for the game since Friday – roared in anxiety. Isolated one-on-one against Craft, Michigan’s sophomore Player of the Year candidate stepped back and launched a three over Craft’s outstretched arm in the game’s waning seconds. “I thought it was going to go in when I turned around,” said Craft, a junior guard. And for a second it appeared he was right. But then the ball rattled around the rim and squirted into the arms of a leaping junior guard Lenzelle Smith Jr. His free throws, along with Craft’s, put the contest away in the final 14 seconds as OSU pulled away for a grueling 56-53 victory. The missed shot gave OSU (13-3, 3-1) its first win against a ranked team in four attempts this season and allowed the Buckeyes to remain within striking distance in the young Big Ten season. “It’s always in the back of your mind,” Craft said. “We haven’t played our best when we played the better teams that we played throughout this year. I think we just took a step back and found a way to get a big win.” The victory was a stark contrast to OSU’s previous contests against No. 1 Duke, No. 6 Kansas and No. 12 Illinois when the Buckeyes never shot better than 35 percent and struggled to find an offensive rhythm outside of junior forward Deshaun Thomas. OSU shot 52 percent from the floor Sunday, and though Thomas led the way, it was far more than OSU’s leading scorer that helped the Buckeyes jump out to a commanding 20-point advantage about 10 minutes into the first half. Craft, who has been criticized for a lack of production on the offensive end, attacked the basket early, scoring from both the outside and in. He stepped into a three in the game’s opening minutes and followed it up by twice slicing to the basket, finishing with nine points and four assists. Sophomore forward Sam Thompson added a spark as well, equaling his season average of seven points before the nine minute mark of the first half. Then there was Thomas, who continued his high-level of offensive play this season, with 20 points, including two 3-pointers in the first half – one of which fueled him and many of his teammates to pound their chests on the way down court. “I was geeked, as they say,” Thomas said. The biggest contributor of all though, might have been the Buckeye defense, which smothered the Wolverines from the opening tip. Led by Craft, OSU forced 13 turnovers, nine of which came in the first half. Burke, junior guard Tim Hardaway Jr., and freshman guard Nik Stauskas came into the game averaging a combined 48 points per contest but were held to just 27 points on 9-for-31 shooting Sunday. “Ohio State is a really, really good defensive team,” said Michigan coach John Beilein. “Really good. You’re seeing a team that plays defense, buys into it and very skilled defenders out on the perimeter.” Behind that defense, OSU built a 29-8 advantage, but slowly Michigan started chipping away. By halftime the lead was down to 12. A 10-0 run cut the lead to one and, with 6:59 remaining, the score was knotted up at 46. “We stopped executing,” said OSU coach Thad Matta. “We need five guys to play and we went through a stretch there when only the guy on the screen and the guy with the ball were the only guys playing.” But it was the Buckeyes that would write the game’s final chapter. Back-to-back buckets from senior forward Evan Ravenel and a jumper from Thomas gave OSU a six-point lead it would never relinquish. After Burke misfired on his late-game three, free throws sealed the win. “In the past we might have splintered apart on that run,” Craft said. “But we just kind of got together and took a few deep breaths and understood that our system has worked throughout the game and it was going to work down the stretch.” The win moves the Buckeyes to 13-3 on the year and hands Michigan, which was previously the nation’s only unbeaten team, its first loss of the season. It also prevented the Wolverines from rising to the top of the national rankings, and though the basketball rivalry between the two schools certainly isn’t as storied or intense as it is in football, the circumstances made the win a little sweeter for the Buckeyes. “There’s always satisfaction in denying Michigan the No. 1 spot in the country,” Ravenel said. OSU is set to next play Michigan State Saturday in East Lansing, Mich. read more

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New maximum duty knife gate valve for abrasive cyclone use from DeZURIK

first_imgDeZURIK now offers the new KGC-MD Maximum Duty Cast Knife Gate Valve. These valves are specifically designed to provide the shearing and sealing capabilities needed in demanding services such as cyclone separators. Because the valve is designed to provide long service life in highly abrasive applications, it can be used in many applications in the mining and minerals industries.The KGC-MD Knife Gate Valves are available in 80-600 mm (3-24″) sizes with metal or dual metal and resilient seats. To withstand highly abrasive media, the valves are available with a replaceable hardened seat, hardened gate, full 100% port opening, high performance packing system with wire scraper rings, and heavy-duty superstructure. All these features combine to provide a longer service life, less downtime and less maintenance than other valves designed for these tough applications, DeZURIK reports.last_img read more

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Metso to deliver three Vertimill grinding lines to Russias iron ore major

first_imgMetso will deliver three grinding lines including spare parts and supervision to NLMK Group’s Stoilensky GOK iron ore production plant in southern Russia. NLMK Group, an international metallurgical company, has launched the construction of an additional concentration section including the three new grinding equipment lines with Metso’s Vertimill®. The lines will be assembled by 2020 in a single production unit and will enable scaling up the concentrate output with a 14% increase in capacity.“The technique of using vertical mills to grind ore has been successfully applied at more than 100 iron ore mining and processing enterprises worldwide. This technology at Stoilensky GOK will increase the efficiency of production processes and provide the necessary growth in the production of iron ore to enable the supply of cost-competitive raw materials to the Novolipetsk Metallurgical Combine, Russia’s largest steelmaking enterprise,” said Marat Mryasov, Director, Project Management at Stoilensky GOK“For today’s miners, saving energy and improving productivity while reducing costs are an integral part of building profitable business. When creating sustainable and resource-efficient processing solutions for our customers, we tap into Metso’s 150 years of global design and engineering expertise,” said Victor Tapia, President, Metso’s Mining Equipment business area.This order is Metso’s first Vertimill® 4500 stirred mill installation for the Russian iron ore industry. The order was booked in Metso’s 2nd quarter 2018 orders received, and the delivery will take place in Q4/2019.“Metso Vertimills® are globally recognized as energy-efficient grinding machines with proven grind efficiency from varying feeds, from as coarse as 6 mm to products finer than 20 microns. In addition to reduced media consumption, the lower installation cost, minimal maintenance and minimal liner wear of Metso’s Vertimill® make it the lowest total cost of ownership solution in many applications. Since its introduction in 1979, Metso has delivered over 440 Vertimills® globally.”last_img read more

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We were afraid for our children 10000 flee Iraq town

first_imgThe latest influx will place further pressure on resources there, particularly housing and fuel supplies.The autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq has already seen an influx of people fleeing a Sunni militant offensive, led by jihadists from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), that has swept parts of the country.Those who fled Qara Qosh had no access to showers or air conditioning, worsening already difficult conditions in Iraq’s scorching summer heat, the UNHCR said, adding many were concerned about a lack of medical care.The UNHCR and fleeing residents interviewed by AFP said heavy shelling of Qara Qosh and the surrounding area of Hamdaniyah from neighbouring villages had forced them to leave.It was not immediately clear who carried out the mortar shelling.Children afraid, adults escape“Our children did not sleep for two days because they were afraid from the shelling,” said Azaar Behnam, who was sitting near her five children in a youth centre in Arbil where those who fled were being sheltered.“We escaped and left everything behind because the sound was really terrible, and life became impossible.”Other residents of the Hamdaniyah area interviewed by AFP gave similar accounts.“The weather was very hot, we were suffering, and there was no electricity or water,” said Taala Ishaq, a 65-year-old who fled with 24 relatives, including 18 grandchildren.We left the city because we were afraid for our children.The population of Qara Qosh is mostly Syriac Catholic, and security forces in the town have long been drawn from local Christians.A Christian militia also reports to the police and provides security for churches and church property.Iraq’s Christian community is a shadow of what it once was — it once numbered more than a million, but now there are fewer than 400,000 Christians left across the country.- © AFP, 2014Read: $500 million to be spent training rebels, as US steps up Syria involvement> UP TO 10,000 people have fled a mostly Christian town in northern Iraq after it was shelled with mortars, former residents and the UN’s refugee agency said today.Residents of Qara Qosh, east of the militant-held city of Mosul in Nineveh province, left in a rush and had little time to take their possessions, with most fleeing to the Kurdish regional capital Arbil, the UNHCR said.“Up to 10,000 people from the predominantly Christian communities of Qara Qosh have fled their homes after mortar rounds landed near their ancient town earlier this week,” the UN agency said on its website.last_img read more

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Sonys RX100 is setting the pointandshoot world on fire

first_imgOne of the most hotly contested segments in the gadget world is that of the “serious compacts”. These are the high-end, fixed lens cameras that are favored by photo enthusiasts, professional photographers, and vacationers who would rather pay a little more money than waste time researching.In the past there has been an incredible amount of competition, but there have been relatively few runaway hits. This is, of course, in part due to that competition — the difference between the offerings from Nikon, Panasonic, and Canon, for instance, just isn’t that great — but it’s also due to companies not wanting to rock the boat. Serious compacts that are too good compete with DSLRs and mirrorless cameras, which are often sold with pricey accessories that lock in consumers.With the recent release of the RX100 Best Price at Amazon Sony has upended the serious compact world in a way that we haven’t seen since Canon released the S95 in late 2010. At the time the S95 was lauded by a number of sources as the best point-and-shoot on the market and the one-to-buy, despite stiff competition from the Panasonic LX-5 and Samsung TL-500. And now Sony, who has made major strides since that time, has matched, if not exceeded, that level of near-universal praise despite pricing their camera at $650, considerably more then the S95’s and S100’s (its successor) $400.Why has the RX100 been making so many headlines over the past few weeks? The main reason is because of its monstrous sensor. Sony’s new point-and-shoot packs a 1-inch sensor. That might not sound like a lot, but it is — an inch put it at 2.5 times the size of the sensor on Canon’s S100Best Price at Amazon. The 1-inch size is comparable to that used on Nikon 1 series (J1 and V1 MILCs). Of course the J1 with a lens is selling for $500 (down from $700) these days, so the sensor size might not be as shocking. What’s most impressive is the size of the Sony’s sensor compared to that of the overall camera body.The key point about the size is this: the RX100 will fit into a man’s breast pocket (the old floppy disk test) and is light enough to carry around all day. And despite that, you get excellent picture quality, very good low-light performance, 3.6x optical zoom, and an f/1.8 lens (up to f/4.9 at full zoom). Basically it’s all the camera that enthusiasts want, with a size that’s small enough for it to be the camera that is always with you.Another big selling point for the RX100 is speed. The on/off times might not be too impressive for DSLR users, but the shot-to-shot times are fantastic for a 20MP point-and-shoot, even when you are shooting RAW+JPG. With JPGs at about 5MB and RAW files around 20MB, you’ll be filling up SD cards in no time flat.Pricing and features aside, there is no doubt that the RX100 is a hit. The camera has nearly flawless reviews and is currently ranked number one in Amazon.com’s Best Sellers list for cameras. For reference, the S100 is ranked 14th, the S95 is 40th, and the Panasonic LX7 is 424th (though it is currently out of stock). Nikon’s J1Best Price at Amazon is available in a number of different kits and colors, but the most popular of them (the white body) is in the 2000+ range. Of course popularity isn’t a stand in for quality, but what it comes down to is that Sony has put out the digital camera that people have wanted for some time, and the word is getting out.Of course, all is not perfect with the RX100. At $650, with no discounts in sight, the camera is expensive, it lacks GPS support, it doesn’t have a hot shoe or accessory port like the Olympus XZ-1 (which means no view finder), and it features Sony’s hate-it-or-don’t-mind-it menu system. Also, the battery can only be charged in-camera, the zoom is a bit sluggish, and the LCD does not articulate.While there are some legitimate concerns here, the RX100 will win people over with its size, its huge sensor, and then some very smart decisions, like the ability to charge using micro USB, and the built-in lens cap, which almost all of the competition was unable to pull off.Sony really stepped up their game here, and people are responding accordingly. The company has been able to make bold decisions and upset the complacency apple cart that camera manufacturers (and camera buyers) know so well. Despite their excellent NEX series (which is worth protecting) and considerable brand loyalty for the Canon and Panasonic offerings, Sony went ahead and released a dominant fixed lens camera. It’s not something that will kill the DSLR or mirrorless market, but it’ll take a bite out of both and make it clear that competitors will need to step up their games if they want to take on this pocketable powerhouse.Sony RX100 camera – frontSony RX100 camera – frontsony_rx100_002sony_rx100_003sony_rx100_0044sony_rx_100_fullZoom_crop100% crop:last_img read more

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May could be decisive month this year

first_imgGreece is expected to make more progress on the macroeconomic front in 2014, but a large part of the population is likely to come under more pressure as austerity policies bite deeper, increasing political risk in view of elections for the European Parliament and local authorities in May. Whether growing public discontent may lead to a period of political uncertainty remains to be seen. This will be the main factor that will determine whether 2014 will be a bad or good year for the economy.In some respects, 2014 is a lot like 2009. In the spring of 2009, former conservative prime minister Costas Karamanlis reportedly sought the consent of main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou to implement tough measures to cut the budget deficit. With just 151 deputies in the 300-seat Parliament and little influence over trade unions, the New Democracy leader thought his government would have been ousted if he were going alone.On his part, Papandreou felt that conditions were on his side with public discontent on the rise. He warned that PASOK would trigger elections in the spring of 2010 and topple the government by refusing to agree with the conservatives on a candidate for the presidency, meaning the nominee would not get the 180 votes in Parliament needed. Karamanlis decided to carry on and suffered a comparatively mild defeat in the elections for European Parliament in June 2009.However, he soon realized the need for an ambitious program of fiscal consolidation and called early elections in October 2009. He ran a pre-election campaign on a platform of austerity and reforms and the New Democracy party, which had disappointed even its core constituency with its past performance, was routed. PASOK and Papandreou, who campaigned by telling the public that “there is money (for spending),” won handily.Back to the present. Undoubtedly, conservative prime minister Antonis Samaras is not Karamanlis, and unlike his conservative predecessor he leads a two-party coalition government. Alexis Tsipras, the leader of the main opposition radical leftist party, is not Papandreou and he knows that even if his party wins it will have to form a coalition government. But both face European and local elections in May and Parliament has to select a new president next year.Moreover, Tsipras has made it clear he will seek general elections if SYRIZA wins the May elections for the European Parliament. The party could also force national elections in 2015, when the term of current President Karolos Papoulias expires, and it can count on public discontent to enhance its electoral chances as the troika insists on more austerity measures to achieve primary budget surplus goals in 2014 and 2015.So, Prime Minister Samaras is facing a similar dilemma to that of Karamanlis in the spring of 2009, although the economic situation is quite different. Public finances have been put in order at a very high cost in terms of lost output, jobs and purchasing power. In addition, the political landscape is more fluid and gives rise to two scenarios.Under a benign political scenario where the political risk does not translate into a protracted period of political uncertainty and the economic program is broadly implemented, even with some delays, one should expect positive economic outcomes.Greece should produce a bigger primary surplus than in 2013, perhaps close to the target of 1.5 percent of GDP, and the current account balance may post a surplus. In addition, recession should continue to recede and may give way to stabilization and slim growth at some point in the second half of 2014, aided by another strong year for tourism and a small rebound in investment spending with some highway projects being restarted. This should help stabilize and even trim the high unemployment rate, but will do little to make the positive impact felt by society.In this context, Greece should also be able to capitalize on the expected debt relief measures to be decided by the Eurogroup to partially access financial markets at acceptable borrowing costs in the second half of the year. This should further boost market and business sentiment and put the virtuous cycle in full motion, paving the way for a return to growth which will be felt more by the masses in 2015.Under an adverse political scenario marked by a protracted period of political uncertainty, the economic landscape would be quite different. Progress on the fiscal front would be limited at best and the chances for an economic recovery later in the year will be trimmed if not eliminated as market sentiment turns sour, hurting consumption and business investments. Unemployment may even march higher and income inequalities rise further as more people from the middle class join the ranks of the poor. Greece will have no access to global markets and will be forced to seek a new bailout loan with conditionality. Since the main political forces do not want to leave the euro, they will have to swallow the bitter pill but the economy will have lost precious time.Of course, no one can say for sure what will happen next May and beyond. However, it is clear that politics will be the most important factor in economic developments in 2014. It will determine whether the Greek economy will suffer a setback or enter a virtuous cycle. Premier Samaras was of the opinion back in 2009 that the conservatives should have implemented fiscal austerity and not called early elections. This time he has to make the call but he has to count on the deputies of the junior coalition partner, PASOK, to go along. It will not be easy. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

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Liverpool Danny Murphy questions United players effort

Liverpool Danny Murphy questions United players effort

first_imgFormer Liverpool midfielder Danny Murphy has questioned the effort of Manchester United players under Jose Mourinho.Murphy insists United’s players must take responsibility for their performances when Mourinho was in charge.United sacked the Portuguese gaffer in December with the Red Devils 19 points behind league leaders Liverpool after their 3-1 loss to the Reds at Anfield.Former United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was appointed on an interim basis until the end of the season and has led the club to six wins on the bounce following their 1-0 win over Spurs on Sunday afternoon.Speaking in the aftermath of the victory against Tottenham, Murphy questioned the efforts of the United players, saying, as quoted by Manchester Evening News: “They are putting a shift in and putting the effort in, that’s the biggest part of it.”Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedSolskjaer praises Harry Maguire after Man United’s 1-0 win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Ole Gunnar Solskjaer singled out Harry Maguire for praise after helping Manchester United keep a clean sheet in their 1-0 win over Leicester City.“However disgruntled you are with the manager it is your duty to go out and give your everything.”“You have to give 100 per cent effort in every training session and every single match.”“Can those players say they did that for Jose Mourinho? Aside from the Juventus win, I never saw that kind of performance from every single Manchester United player.”“So they have to hold their hands up, whatever reason that was.”“But all credit to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, he’s come here with a clear plan to play on the counter-attack and he’s done incredibly well.”last_img read more

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99 of junior doctors vote in favour of industrial action

99 of junior doctors vote in favour of industrial action

first_imgJunior doctors in England have voted in favour of industrial action over changes to their contracts, including pay and working hours.Some 99% of the 76% of junior doctors who took part in the ballot are prepared to take industrial action short of a strike, while 98% are prepared to take industrial action that includes a strike.Two full walk-outs have been proposed from 8am to 5pm on 8 and 16 December. Industrial action is also proposed for 8am on 1 December until 8am on 2 December that would follow an emergency care only model. This would see junior doctors provide the same level of service that happens in their given speciality, hospital or GP practice on Christmas Day.The British Medical Association (BMA) has approached the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) to offer conciliatory talks with health secretary Jeremy Hunt and NHS Employers.Jeremy Hunt, health secretary, said: “It is regrettable that junior doctors have voted for industrial action which will put patients at risk and see operations cancelled or delayed. We want to ensure patients have the same quality of care across the week, and have put forward a generous offer that increases basic pay by 11% and reduces doctors’ hours.“We hope junior doctors will consider the impact this action, especially the withdrawal of emergency care, will have on patients and reconsider.”Mark Porter, council chair at The British Medical Association, added: “We regret the inevitable disruption that this will cause but it is the government’s adamant insistence on imposing a contract that is unsafe for patients in the future, and unfair for doctors now and in the future, that has brought us to this point.“Patients are doctors’ first priority, which is why, even with such a resounding mandate, we are keen to avert the need for industrial action, which is why we have approached ACAS to offer conciliatory talks with the health secretary and NHS Employers to clarify the conflicting information coming from government over the past weeks.”last_img read more

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Arrests of BJYM hyderabad city leaders condemned

Arrests of BJYM hyderabad city leaders condemned

first_imgHyderabad: The BJYM city wing has condemned the illegal arrests by TRS government, when its activists tried to protest in front of TS Secretariat on Thursday for illegal demolition of Secretariat and to reconstruct new building. They alleged that it is a huge loss and misuse of public money. BJYM city vice-president Bhaskar Giri, BJYM city general secretary Shivaji, Rajesh Kumar Netha, the city wing vice-president, Laddu, Ayush, Mallesh and others participated in the protest. They were arrested and shifted to Ramgopalpet police station and released in the evening on personal sureties.last_img

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Another robber killed in Cumilla gunfight

Another robber killed in Cumilla gunfight

first_imgProthom Alo IllustrationAn alleged robber was killed in a ‘gunfight’ between his cohorts and Detective Branch (DB) of police at Kongshonagar in Burichang upazila of Cumilla early Thursday, making him the second one to face the same fate in 24 hours.The deceased, according to the police, is Halim, a ringleader of a robber gang and son of Mafizul Islam of Bajebaherchar village in the upazila.Being tipped off that a gang was preparing to commit robbery, a team of DB police conducted a drive in the area around 3:00am, said Abdullah Al-Mamun, additional superintendent of Cumilla police.Sensing the presence of the detectives, the robbers opened fire on the law enforcement, prompting them to retaliate. Halim was caught in the line of fire and sustained bullet injuries.He was taken to Cumilla Medical College Hospital where the doctors declared him dead.Police also arrested two robbers — Jakir Hossain and Limon Sarkar — from the spot.Three policemen, including officer-in-charge of DB Nasir Uddin Mridha, were also injured in the gunfight, police added.A case was filed with Burichang police station in this connection.Another suspected robber, Rubayet Hossain Babul, was killed in another ‘gunfight with police in Daudkandi upazila of the district early Wednesday.The law enforcement’s version of the event was, however, not verified independently as no version of the incident was available immediately either from any witnesses or from any members of the victim’s family.last_img read more

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Biman staff enjoy 85 to 100pc discount on its tickets

Biman staff enjoy 85 to 100pc discount on its tickets

first_imgAlthough the national flag carrier Biman Bangladesh Airlines is often criticised for corruption, irregularities and incurring losses, it issued around 48 thousand tickets to its employees free of cost or for minimal fare over the last one decade.The parliamentary standing committee on the civil aviation and tourism ministry has raised questions over issuing the tickets worth Tk 700 million.Biman on Sunday submitted a report to the parliamentary committee which sought information about the free tickets from the flag carrier.Biman apparently issued as many as 47,845 tickets to its officials at a discount of 85 to 100 per cent since 2009.Biman staff issued those tickets either for themselves or for family members.The engineering and material management department’s 551 staff took 10,848 tickets. Flight operations’ Tania Reza alone took 338 tickets. Joynal Abedin of the same department issued 173 tickets. Finance department’s Nargis Sultana took 170 tickets. Junior commercial officer Anwer Hossain issued 142 and traffic department’s ground service supervisor Arif Ahmed issued 150 tickets respectively. Those tickets were issued for trips to London, Dubai, Jeddah, Singapore, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Kathmandu, Kolkata, Chattogram, Sylhet, Cox’s Bazar, Jashore, Syedpur and Rajshahi.Deputy general manager of the public relations department, Tahera Khandker, issued 81 tickets for herself, her husband, offspring and mother. Flight service department’s junior purser Mostari Anwar took 61 tickets for Thailand, Singapore, India, Saudi Arabia and Malaysia. Parvin Shirin, Shabnam Kader, Sanjida Parvin, Gahida Rommi and Rozina Akter of the same department took 40-50 international tickets. Assistant manager (purchase) Swapan Kumar Dey took 68 tickets. He got 11 tickets for Dhaka to London round trip with 90 per cent discount and two for free. Swapan took four tickets of Dhaka-Singapore-Kuala Lumpur-Dhaka and Dhaka-Kolkata-DhakaPublic relations department’s DGM Tahera Khandker sent a written explanation about this matter to this reporter which said that the employees of Biman get concession tickets during their service period. An official (along with dependents) can annually avail highest 20 tickets with 85 to 100 per cent concession in domestic and international destination.The parliamentary committee, however, thinks that such wholesale concession tickets are irrational. Member of civil aviation and tourism ministry’s standing committee Kazi Firoz Rashid told Prothom Alo, “Biman is already incurring losses. Flights operate with empty seats, but at the same time tickets are unavailable. Passenger service doesn’t even exist. Yet tickets are being issued free or at minimum price to the staff. This is not right. This should be reviewed.”Biman sources said 2,472 tickets were issued for free from London while DGM Shafiqul Islam was country manager of United Kingdom. Of those, 1,136 were business class and 1,336 were economy class tickets. Those tickets were worth Tk 160 million. Shafiqul was made OSD (Officer on Special Duty) last April for reportedly embezzling money.Civil aviation and tourism ministry’s secretary Mohibul Haque thinks that provision of issuing tickets at such a big discount should be changed.He said that ministry would issues directives in this end.Biman authorities had not included the price of the discounted tickets in the report they submitted to parliamentary committee. Only a few departments including procurement and logistic support have given a complete report.Analysing the report of the procurement and logistic support department, it has been found that 33 officials of the department took 555 tickets since 2009. Of those, 363 are tickets of domestic flight and 192 are of international round trips. Most of the domestic flight tickets were also of round trips.Of the international tickets, 48 were of Dhaka-Jeddah-Dhaka, 35 of Dhaka-London-Dhaka, 34 of Dhaka-Singapore-Dhaka, 14 of Dhaka-Singapore-Kuala Lumpur-Dhaka, 14 of Dhaka-Kuala Lumpur-Dhaka, 3 of Abu Dhabi-Dhaka, 10 of Dhaka-Bangkok-Dhaka and 28 of Dhaka-Kolkata-Dhaka.Given the low cost of Biman’s tickets and also the concessions given to its staff for tickets, the airline is spending around Tk 70 million on ticket facilities for its employees.>Transparency International Bangladesh’s executive director Iftekharuzzaman, speaking to Prothom Alo, termed this rule unacceptable.“Issuing tickets almost free of cost at the cost of public funds is not acceptable at all. It should be thoroughly investigated whether this facility is being misused.”* This report appeared in the print edition of Prothom Alo and has been rewritten in English by Galib AshrafRead more:ACC to quiz Biman officials, ex-MD over ‘recruitment irregularities’last_img read more

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White Terminates Ward 8 Recount

White Terminates Ward 8 Recount

first_imgTrayon White ran in the April 28 Ward 8 D.C. Council special election. (AFRO File Photo)Trayon White, the second-place finisher in the recent Ward 8 D.C. Council special election, told officials at the District of Columbia Board of Elections on May 29 to cease the recount effort he was paying for. A short statement released by the elections board that day stated, “the termination was requested by the recount petitioner” and “as a result the certified election results for that contest stand.”LaRuby May (D-Ward 8) defeated White and a number of other candidates with 1,955 votes (26.75 percent). White had 1,877 or 25.68 percent.Denise Tolliver, a spokeswoman for the elections board, said White had to pay for the recount process as mandated by District law. “If Trayon White had gotten 50 more votes, the recount would have been paid for by the taxpayers,” Tolliver said.The first day of the recount took place on May 28 at the elections board headquarters located in the Judiciary Square building. Elections board employees and some temporary workers conducted the process.Those who counted the ballots wore dark blue polo shirts and sat at four tables in a designated room. A security guard was present at all times during the counting. The ballots were hand counted and put into envelopes that were designated as “White,” “May,” or “Other,” meaning the other candidates in the race. There are 17 precincts in Ward 8, and White specifically requested that precincts 117, 120, and 134 be counted first because his campaign leaders believed those polling places may have had some electoral mischief.Precincts 118 and 122 were counted during the mandatory post-election audit and therefore were not part of the recount.After the ballots were counted by hand, they were put in machines that recorded the results.White was present throughout the recount process but May did not make an appearance at any point.White paid $850 or $56 per precinct in the form of a deposit for the recount process to begin.The elections board scheduled the recount for two working days and it is estimated that White would have had to pay $7,000-$8,000, or as much as $533 per precinct, if he had permitted the process of recounting the 15 precincts to go through to completion. Tolliver said that White, because he was paying for the recount, had the right to terminate it at any time.White told the AFRO that he decided to go through the recount out of a sense of obligation to his supporters. “I am doing this because the demand from the community was so strong,” White said.White said that he will fundraise to pay for the recount and he notes that, according to an inquiry, he has had to pay the most for this type of process. “I will make my pitch to the people in the ward to help pay for this and we have to do something,” he said. “I have learned that no candidate has had to pay this much money for a recount. The most my research has shown is $50.”It is not clear how much White will ultimately have to pay at this point and whether it has to be done as a one-time payment or through a payment plan. Tolliver said the deposit can be used to pay part of the recount’s administrative costs and labor.Most recounts in the District occur at the advisory neighborhood commission level, where the universe of voters is 2,000. The last major recount took place during the 2002 election season in which then D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams emerged victorious.White has said he will challenge May in the June 14, 2016, Democratic Party primary.last_img read more

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Measuring impact of likes by users on Facebook being targeted by sellers

Measuring impact of likes by users on Facebook being targeted by sellers

first_img 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. Explore further Citation: Measuring impact of ‘likes’ by users on Facebook being targeted by sellers (2017, November 14) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-11-impact-users-facebook-sellers.html More information: S. C. Matz et al. Psychological targeting as an effective approach to digital mass persuasion, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (2017). DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1710966114AbstractPeople are exposed to persuasive communication across many different contexts: Governments, companies, and political parties use persuasive appeals to encourage people to eat healthier, purchase a particular product, or vote for a specific candidate. Laboratory studies show that such persuasive appeals are more effective in influencing behavior when they are tailored to individuals’ unique psychological characteristics. However, the investigation of large-scale psychological persuasion in the real world has been hindered by the questionnaire-based nature of psychological assessment. Recent research, however, shows that people’s psychological characteristics can be accurately predicted from their digital footprints, such as their Facebook Likes or Tweets. Capitalizing on this form of psychological assessment from digital footprints, we test the effects of psychological persuasion on people’s actual behavior in an ecologically valid setting. In three field experiments that reached over 3.5 million individuals with psychologically tailored advertising, we find that matching the content of persuasive appeals to individuals’ psychological characteristics significantly altered their behavior as measured by clicks and purchases. Persuasive appeals that were matched to people’s extraversion or openness-to-experience level resulted in up to 40% more clicks and up to 50% more purchases than their mismatching or unpersonalized counterparts. Our findings suggest that the application of psychological targeting makes it possible to influence the behavior of large groups of people by tailoring persuasive appeals to the psychological needs of the target audiences. We discuss both the potential benefits of this method for helping individuals make better decisions and the potential pitfalls related to manipulation and privacy. Fake Facebook ‘like’ networks exploited code flaw to create millions of bogus ‘likes’ Credit: CC0 Public Domaincenter_img Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Most people who use Facebook know that the people behind the social behemoth collect data regarding everything users do on the site and then sell that data to companies who use it to create targeted ads on the same site. But until now, what has not been clear is if there are ways to manipulate the model in a way that may not be as obvious. In this new effort, the researchers looked at the impact of targeting users based on nothing more than “likes” they made for two given entities.In a prior effort, researchers at Cambridge had created a massive database by combing information available from user profiles on Facebook. Part of that data included “likes” made by users for other users or entities such as corporate pages. In this new effort, the researchers looked at “likes” given for just two of those: Lady Gaga and Stargate. The team at Cambridge had found some evidence suggesting that girls or women who “liked” Lady Gaga’s page tend to be more extroverted than average. In contrast, girls or women “liking” Stargate’s page tend to be more introverted.The researchers then worked with an online beauty product maker who used the data from Cambridge to create and buy ads on Facebook targeted at women based on whether they were deemed more extroverted or introverted as determined solely on their decision to click on a “like” for one or the other chosen pages.After running the ads for a period of time (which reached a total of 3.1 million people), the unnamed beauty product maker reported back to the researchers that the scheme had resulted in a clear increase in both clicks on their ads (1.4 times as many) and in sales (1.5 times as many) as compared to untargeted advertising on the same site. This, the researchers note, could have far reaching implications, because the same technique could also be used for other purposes, such as influencing elections. © 2017 Phys.org (Phys.org)—A small team of researchers from Columbia Business School, Stanford University and the Wharton School of Business all in the U.S. and the University of Cambridge in the U.K. has found a way to show that sellers targeting ads at users based on their profiles on Facebook can have a dramatic impact on sales. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes the experiment they carried out, what they found, and some possible implications of their findings.last_img read more

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A tryst with Art

A tryst with Art

first_img‘A Tryst with Art’, a painting exhibition has been organised for art lovers in Delhi. In this exhibition, the cynosure of all eyes is Kiran Soni Gupta (IAS), and the center of attraction is her 120 paintings – which have been displayed at the Lalit Kala Academy, until January 24. This exhibition has been organised on the theme of environment, sustainability and rich resources of nature which are available to the society. There are some famous paintings like watercolors, acrylic on canvas, oil on canvas, oil on paper, pen sketch and syno prints paintings. Famous semi-classical singer Rini Mukharjee also came to exhibit and observe the beautiful paintings at the venue. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfArtist Kiran Soni Gupta is an accomplished officer and besides being an artist, also a prolific writer and keen photographer. Currently serving as Additional Secretary and Financial Advisor in Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, she is also a national award winner from National Productivity Council and NABARD. Making her impact on international level, the artist has already done 45 solo and 85 group exhibitions across the globe. The artist has participated in exhibition in countries like USA, France, Canada, Iran, Shri lanka, Chicago and many more. The artist also attached a feather to her cap, being the only Indian to participate in Le Louvre Museum in Paris, France. About her artworks, Kiran Gupta rightly mentions that all her paintings are inspired by nature while travelling in India and abroad. Further, she also quotes that, all her paintings acknowledge the sustainability and the environment. Some of the most attractive paintings of the artist including ‘wintry morning’, ‘cosmos’, ‘golden garden’, ‘sad boy’ and ‘Buddha head’, and ‘toddler Ganesha’ sculpture, have been exhibited here.last_img read more

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VIDEO New York HS team kicks off March Madness with miracle 34

VIDEO New York HS team kicks off March Madness with miracle 34

first_imgThere will be plenty of buzzer beaters in March during the NCAA tournament, but it will be hard for any of them to top Julian McGarvey’s 3/4 miracle heave that won New York’s Section 1 Class A championship for Ardsley High School over Tappan Zee, on SaturdayWith a 51-49 lead with 2.4 seconds left, Tappan Zee attempted to burn off the remaining seconds with a long inbound pass. Incredibly, McGarvey managed to intercept the pass, collect himself and launch a 3/4 prayer from around his own foul line before time expired. It went in, giving Ardsley the 52-51 win and the state title. Complete chaos ensued.The madness has officially arrived.last_img

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Frugal Choices for OnDemand Tech

first_img Enroll Now for Free 5 min read This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. A handful of tech firms are stepping up to help business owners make lemonade out of the financial lemons harvested on Wall Street this fall. Updated software and web design services are shifting into high gear, marketing themselves to small businesses as money savers for belt-tightening entrepreneurs.In recent months, Tarzana, Calif.-based InfoStreet began boosting its campaign to target its StreetSmart virtual office system and optional “customer relationship management” application to small businesses. The company is taking the software-as-a-service concept to new heights by offering e-mail, a calendar, a workflow manager, file storage and sharing, web publishing, optional customer management and more, all accessible online via any web browser.Theoretically, proprietors could throw out the IT guy and a rat’s nest of network cables and simply plug each company laptop into the internet and go to work. InfoStreet’s CEO Siamak Farah compares the SaaS evolution to the industrial revolution and the advent of tap water.”We’re going through a major paradigm shift,” Farah says. “Nowadays, you open the tap and the water comes to you. A similar thing is happening in technology and IT. Whether they’re small or large, businesses had their own servers and someone to maintain them. And if they grew, they had to add servers. Now with software as a service, you plug into the internet and this software just comes down the pipe.”The service is part of the “cloud computing” revolution. Experts believe that, in the near future, computers will be used mainly to access the internet. Files, programs and communication will be stored and facilitated in the cloud of data that makes up the web. Computers won’t run programs; they’ll only be needed to access them.The shift is already happening, not only with companies such as InfoStreet, but also with webmail programs (your Yahoo e-mail account is in the cloud) and web browsers (such as Google’s Chrome, which released this summer and is designed for cloud computing). In this paradigm, Farah says, business owners “don’t have to worry about infrastructure.”SaaS can be a frugal choice compared to, say, licensing Microsoft Office for several employees, using its Exchange service and hiring someone to maintain your network. Prices for StreetSmart, for example, start at $10 per user each month and get progressively less expensive as more users are added (for 100 users and more in a company, the price is $6 a head each month). The customer management add-on is an extra $15 per person each month.Farah says the service is especially helpful for small businesses with employees who work at home or who are based at satellite offices.”Two issues employers were grappling with,” he says, “include, one, control: They’re not sure what’s happening when their employees are not at the office. And, two, they’re concerned that their employees don’t have the right environment. Employees might say, ‘I’ll do that thing when I’m back in the office.’ Now with software as a service, you see the same thing at your desk at home as management does in the office.””Management can keep abreast of workflow development,” Farah says. “They don’t have to breathe down the necks of employees; they can see the results. That, in a sense, provides some value for the small business.”Likewise, New York-based KMGI Studios is repositioning its products and price points to appeal to small-business owners. CEO Alex Konanykhin says entrepreneurs can squeeze more out of their marketing budgets by focusing on stronger web presentations, thus harvesting more eyeballs.”Small to midsize businesses often spend all their online ad money using Google or Yahoo,” Konanykhin says. “Many companies have been wasteful by paying a lot for traffic that’s driven to websites that have poor presentation.”KMGI offers Adobe Flash and proprietary compression-based presentations that will animate immediately without glitches, so “you’re not loading, loading, loading,” Konanykhin says.Websites with this kind of eye-popping efficiency used to be the province of deep-pocket corporations, but economies of scale have brought technology within the reach of smaller proprietors.”Several years ago, doing a multimedia presentation required a heavy budget,” Konanykhin says. “It could have cost $50,000. Now the cost is, at the most, 10 percent of that. With reduced cost, small companies can double and triple the return on their advertising budgets.”With tightening pocketbooks, Konanykhin argues that it’s more important than ever to stem the flow of ineffective marketing dollars.”If they have an ugly website, most of their money will be wasted because resulting traffic is not going to convert into sales,” he says. “When people come to a website, companies have a few seconds to make a first impression. You need to use web time to make the most compelling pitch.”center_img October 8, 2008 Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Nowlast_img read more

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High court to consider appeal over exclusion of black jurors

first_img Comments   Share   The notes show that the name of each potential black juror was highlighted on four different copies of the jury list and the word “black” was circled next to the race question on questionnaires for the black prospective jurors. Three of the prospective black jurors were identified in notes as “B#1,” ”B#2,” and “B#3.”The notes also show that the prosecutors’ investigator ranked the black prospective jurors against each other in case “it comes down to having to pick one of the black jurors.” Prosecutors struck all four black jurors out of the 42 qualified by the trial court to serve on the jury.A Georgia state court sided with prosecutors who said they challenged each of the possible black jurors for legitimate, race-neutral reasons and did not rely on the highlighted jury lists to make their ultimate decisions. The Georgia Supreme Court affirmed.Just one year before Foster’s trial, the Supreme Court ruled in a landmark 1986 case that it is unconstitutional to dismiss a potential juror because of race.Georgia officials argue that highlighting, circling or otherwise noting the race of a juror in notes does not show any intent to discriminate. The two prosecutors submitted an affidavit to the state court saying that neither one of them made the green highlight marks noting prospective black jurors. New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court will consider whether prosecutors improperly singled out potential black jurors in notes and then excluded them all from the death penalty trial of a black Georgia man accused of murder.The justices agreed Tuesday to hear an appeal from Timothy Foster, who was sentenced to death in 1987 after being convicted of murdering a 79-year-old white woman in Rome, Georgia.Lawyers for Foster are relying on prosecutors’ notes they discovered 19 years after the trial through an open records request. Top Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility The state also says the investigator’s comments were not those of the prosecutors and do not indicate the state’s intent.Foster is being represented by the Southern Center for Human Rights, which provides free legal help to people facing the death penalty and challenges human rights violations in prisons and jails.The Supreme Court will hear arguments in Foster v. Humphrey, 14-8349, when the court begins its new term this fall.___Follow Sam Hananel on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SamHananelAPCopyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober 3 international destinations to visit in 2019 Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement The vital role family plays in society Sponsored Stories How men can have a healthy 2019last_img read more

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