Opposition, B.C. New Democrat both ask conflict commissioner for ruling

VICTORIA — B.C.’s Opposition Liberals and the New Democrat member of the legislature who is accused of a conflict of interest have both asked the province’s conflict commissioner to intervene in a complaint.The Liberals say NDP Delta North member of the legislature Ravi Kahlon should not be part of a committee that influences recommendations on ride-hailing services when his father holds a taxi licence.The Liberals sent a letter to Conflict of Interest Commissioner Paul Fraser asking him to rule on the perceived conflict.Kahlon denies there’s a conflict and says his father has held a taxi licence in Victoria for 28 years and will retire within the next two months.Kahlon has also asked Fraser to review his status to ensure he’s in compliance with conflict rules and policies for members of the legislature.The Liberals say in a news release that the government has put up numerous obstacles to ride-hailing in B.C. and Kahlon’s membership on the committee calls into question the level of objectivity from the New Democrats.The Canadian Press read more

Equifax made breach worse by falling short of privacy obligations to Canadians

OTTAWA — Canada’s privacy commissioner says Equifax fell short of its privacy obligations to Canadians during and after a global data breach in 2017.Privacy concerns included poor security safeguards, retaining information too long, inadequate consent procedures, a lack of accountability for Canadians’ information and limited protection measures offered to affected individuals after the breach.Commissioner Daniel Therrien says these exacerbated the impact of the breach, which affected more than 143 million people around the world, including 19,000 Canadians.Equifax Canada and its U.S.-based parent company agreed to enter into a compliance agreement and has taken steps to improve their security, accountability and data destruction.The breach occurred after hackers gained access to Equifax Inc.’s systems through a vulnerability the company had known about for more than two months, but had not fixed.While Equifax Canada offered free credit monitoring to breach victims for at least four years, other protections didn’t match what was offered by the parent company, including credit freezes that restrict access to credit files.The privacy commissioner also found that the transfer of information about Canadians to the U.S. without their knowledge was inconsistent with its obligations to obtain consent before disclosing personal information to third parties located in another country. read more

Professor researching climate change in China

Liette Vasseur in a lab at BrockChina is one of the world’s top exporters of tea. But climate change threatens the country’s tea plantations with floods, drought and invasive species caused by shifting weather conditions.Enter Liette Vasseur.A professor of Biological Sciences at Brock, Vasseur has been named a Minjiang Scholar at the Fujian Agricultural and Forestry University in the province of Fujian, China. For the next three years, she will spend time in Fujian studying ecological issues related to climate change. This includes its impact on the region’s tea plantations and invasion of exotic species.The plantations are encountering problems with droughts and flash floods, which is impacting the important socio-economic activity, Vasseur said. The tea industry in the Fujian is estimated to be at least 1,000 years old, and is a major economic driver in the province of more than 35 million people.Vasseur hopes to use field and greenhouse approaches to replicate the extreme events experienced by the plantations to learn what can be done to offset the impacts of climate change.“It’s not a question of if (climate change) is coming,” Vasseur said. “It’s a matter of adapting to it.”Vasseur will also study the impact of a North American plant species, Spartina alterniflora, and its impact on Fujian’s coastal mangroves. The species was planted to prevent erosion, she said. But it has since spread uncontrollably and is choking out valuable shoreline, threatening the fish and shrimp industry.“This plant, probably because of lack of competition, has started to grow aggressively,” said Vasseur, who will spend two or three months a year in China. “It’s displacing the livelihood of this coastal community.”Vasseur is an internationally recognized expert on the impacts of climate change. Her research projects have spanned from Cambodia to Burkina Faso, and she has been involved in numerous committees and initiatives. These include serving as a current member of the Commission in Ecosystem Management of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, as well as past membership on the science advisory council of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. She was also lead author for the Atlantic chapter of the Climate Change Assessment Initiative of Natural Resources Canada.Vasseur’s Minjiang scholarship is the result of a long affiliation with entomologist Minsheng You, an academic, and Vice-President, Academic, at Fujian Agricultural and Forestry University with whom she will collaborate with during her time there. She hopes to make her first journey to China as a Minjiang Scholar in late April or early May.“I’m looking forward to good long-term collaboration, and a good experience,” said Vasseur, who hopes to involve Brock undergraduate and graduate students in her work in China. read more

Garden shed explodes after petrol vapours ignite

first_imgThey believe that the vapours were ignited by a faulty fluorescent light fitting, however the extent of fire damage meant Fire Investigation teams were unable to establish how the leak occurred.The force has now issued advice on storage of petrol in homes and gardens.Fire Investigation Officer Jamie Lister said: “In light of what could have been a potentially devastating incident, WYFRS would like to reiterate the safety considerations around storage and use of petrol in homes and gardens.“Petrol produces a vapour which is extremely flammable and must be treated with utmost care. To create a potentially explosive atmosphere there only needs to be a small amount of petrol vapour present, as little as 1.4%.” The explosion was caused by leaked petrol vapoursCredit:WYFRS  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The explosion was caused by leaked petrol vapours CCTV has captured the moment a garden shed in West Yorkshire was flattened in a huge explosion.West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said the blast was caused when “a small amount of petrol stored in appropriate containers and garden machinery, leaked”.last_img read more

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge defy security fears with plan to retrace

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are to make the Royal Family’s first visit to Pakistan in 13 years, shrugging off security fears to follow in the footsteps of the Duke’s grandparents, father and late mother, Diana. The tour, which the three Cambridge children will not be part of, will see them navigate significant security concerns to celebrate the country’s ties with the UK. It will be the most logistically difficult tour the Duchess has undertaken during her time in the… The couple, who have not been on tour together for 18 months as the Duchess looked after their third baby Prince Louis, will visit Pakistan in the autumn as they take on a heavyweight role in Britain’s overseas diplomacy.

Austmine welcomes establishment of METS Innovation Partnership

first_imgAustmine, Australia’s leading association of Australian Mining Equipment, Technology and Services (METS) providers, has said it welcomes a recent announcement by the Labor Government to establish the Mining Equipment, Technology and Services (METS) Innovation Partnership, one of 12 partnerships that has Federal Government supports. “The introduction of the METS Innovation Partnership is timely given the critical state of the mining sector with increasing costs pressures and falling productivity coupled with diminishing ore grades threatening Australia’s global competitive edge,” said Alan Broome, Chairman of Austmine. “Solutions to the challenges which global miners face can be provided by our highly innovative METS sector.”Operating nationally with its headquarters in Brisbane, the METS Innovation Partnership will provide “a collaborative platform to coordinate the adoption of productivity enhancing technologies involving Australian SMEs [Small-Medium Enterprises], Global Tier 1 suppliers and mining companies.” By consolidating key players in the mining supply chain, the group will help to increase the adoption rate of Australian innovation into global supply chains and build a highly collaborative business ecosystem to foster innovation, employment growth and international competitiveness. “It will also enable the METS Sector to continue its strong growth path by assisting world-leading and cutting-edge Australian innovation to gain improved and quicker access to global markets,” Broome said.  “However, collaboration is the key as is the need to be cohesive in resolving industry issues both quickly and efficiently. The METS Innovation Partnership will secure the continued growth and success of this industry to ensure Australia does not lose its competitive advantage as a world-leading mining nation. If we can increase the adoption rates of Australian innovation into global mining value chains and accelerate the commercialisation cycle, we can look forward to another generation of mining leadership. We can also create a sustainable METS industry that will survive long after Australia’s dominance as a mining nation. And while our deposits are finite, our capabilities and skill sets will remain long into the future.”Austmine led the bid for the METS Innovation Partnership along with a number of other key industry partners including the Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane Marketing and the CSIRO.last_img read more

RCT brings automation to MATSA underground operations in Spain

first_imgRCT says it has finalised a major automation project at MATSA’s Aguas Teñidas and Magdalena mines in the Huelva province of Spain.The project involved installing ControlMaster® Guidance Automation on four CAT R2900G underground LHDs and one Automation Centre Surface Control Station at MATSA’s Aguas Teñidas copper-lead-zinc mine.MATSA is a jointly-owned company by Mubadala Investment Co and Trafigura. It owns and operates three mines in the Huelva, including Aguas Teñidas, Magdalena and Sotiel, on top of a 4.4 Mt/y copper and polymetallic processing plant.RCT’s automation centre at Aguas Teñidas is fitted out with RCT’s Multiple Machine Control feature enabling a single operator to remotely control multiple machines at the same time via the mine’s digital communications network.RCT also commissioned two Sandvik LH621 underground LHDs with ControlMaster Guidance Automation at the nearby Magdalena copper mine. These Sandvik LHDs can operate on a digital network via RCT’s Area Access Cabinets which act as an extension of the automation centre and interfaces between the work areas and the machines.This instalment builds on a previous project to mount ControlMaster Teleremote and Guidance Automation solutions on three of the site’s CAT R2900G LHDs, which operated on an analogue network via two surface control stations, according to RCT.Guidance Automation allows machines to tram between two predetermined points on a mine site with the push of a button by operators who also receive real-time information including machine speed, rpm, direction, pitch and roll, RCT said.“The automation centre consists of an ergonomically designed operators chair facing up from screens, which feed real-time information from sensors and machine-mounted cameras to the operator,” the company added. Teleremote, meanwhile, enables the operator to remotely manage the machine from a control station in real time.A MATSA spokesperson said: “This system not only allows us to operate in hazardous conditions safely from the surface, but also increases productivity by permitting us to operate during shift change and smoke clearing. We also have the capability to simultaneously operate more than one piece of equipment with the same teleremote operator.”RCT Account Manager, Shane Smith, said the Guidance Automation products would provide solid benefits for MATSA. “ControlMaster Guidance Automation has a proven track record of improving operator safety in a traditionally hazardous working environment by removing them from the mine face,” he said.“The faster tramming speeds will also help to boost site productivity on site and limit unplanned machine downtime due to repairs from machinery accidents while the new automation centre will reduce operator fatigue due to improved comfort and ease-of-access on the mine’s surface.”last_img read more

La sécheresse sous loeil du satellite Envisat

first_imgLa sécheresse sous l’oeil du satellite EnvisatLe Centre national d’études spatiales (CNES) dévoile une image de l’Écosse et l’Irlande affectées par la sécheresse, prise par le satellite Envisat.Depuis plus d’un mois, l’ouest de l’Europe connaît une période de sécheresse. Le lundi 2 mai de nombreux départs de feu ont été signalés en Écosse et en Irlande. Pour rendre compte de cet inquiétant phénomène climatique, le satellite européen Envisat du CNES a réalisé un cliché sur lequel est visible l’extrême aridité des terres. À lire aussiLe monstre du Loch Ness : Écosse, lac, ce qu’il faut savoir sur la légendeLa France, également touchée par la sécheresse, tente d’y faire face. “On est en situation de crise et de gestion de crise”, a déclaré la  ministre de l’écologie Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet lors d’une réunion des ministres lundi. Au total vingt-huit départements ont actuellement adopté au moins un arrêté sur la restriction de l’usage de l’eau. Ariane Blum, hydrogéologue au service de l’eau du Bureau des recherches géologiques et minières a fait savoir à l’AFP que “les deux tiers des nappes phréatiques ont des niveaux inférieurs à la normale”. Une situation qui inquiète les autorités dont les craintes se tournent vers les centrales nucléaires, dépendantes de ces cours d’eau pour leur refroidissement. Toutefois la ministre de l’écologie a assuré que la sécheresse n’a “aucun impact sur la production nucléaire” et que “le manque d’eau est bien prévu dans le dispositif de contrôle”.La ministre de l’environnement espère pouvoir mettre en place des mesures contribuant à une baisse globale de la consommation d’eau de 20% d’ici 2020. Un objectif qu’elle compte atteindre en instaurant une gestion collective de l’eau dans le monde agricole et une réduction du niveau des fuites à un maximum de 15% (contre 20% en moyenne aujourd’hui) dans les réseaux d’eau potable.Le 17 mai 2011 à 17:46 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Empreinte carbone les vers de terre rejettentils du CO2

first_imgEmpreinte carbone : les vers de terre rejettent-ils du CO2 ? Une étude dirigée par l’Académie des sciences chinoise remet en question les résultats de travaux publiés par une autre équipe voici quelques mois. Ces derniers estimaient inquiétant le bilan carbone de l’activité souterraine des lombrics. Selon la nouvelle étude, ce bilan serait en fait nul.Que deviennent les quelques 1.500 milliards de tonnes de carbone absorbées chaque année par les sols ? Une partie est intégrée à l’humus, fertilisant naturel issu de la décomposition des détritus par les lombrics, lesquels aident ainsi à isoler le carbone. Mais ce processus biogéochimique relâche par ailleurs du CO2 dans l’atmosphère… D’où l’intérêt d’évaluer au final le bilan carbone de l’activité des vers de terre.À lire aussiMaladie de Charcot : symptômes, causes, traitement, où en est on ?En février 2013, une étude dirigée par Ingrid Lubbers, de l’Université de Wageningue (Pays-Bas), suggérait que les sols occupés par ces animaux produisaient 33% de CO2 atmosphérique de plus que les sols exempts de vers. Un mauvais bilan carbone, donc. Mais une nouvelle étude, dirigée par Weixin Zhang, de l’Académie chinoise des sciences à Canton, estime ce bilan nul. Pour en arriver là, l’équipe de Zhang a travaillé sur l’activité de deux espèces de ver, mais en intégrant dans leurs expériences le facteur temps. Au terme d’une première série de relevés d’une durée de 23 jours, les chercheurs ont remis des feuilles en décomposition sur leur terrain d’étude et procédé à 31 nouveaux jours de mesures. Publié dans la revue Nature Communications, les calculs finaux suggèrent qu’à l’issue de l’expérience, la quantité de CO2 libérée dans l’air était égale à celle qui a été stockée sous terre. C’est donc dans la durée que les petites bêtes prouveraient leur innocuité… Reste que le débat entre scientifiques demeure ouvert.Le 20 octobre 2013 à 15:30 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Westworld Just Gave Us Its Biggest Twist Yet

first_img Evan Rachel Wood Just As Disturbed by Humanoid Sophia As Everyone ElseTop Movie and TV Trailers to Watch From SDCC 2019 We knew this was coming. We knew that eventually the show would have its Cylon moment. Someone we thought was human turned out to be a Host. Even guessing Westworld was planning something like this, it was still a complete surprise. But we’ll get to that later. The show tugs at our emotions a little bit with Bernard having a dream about the day his son died. He wakes up and goes to work, testing a Host for self awareness and knowledge of the outside world. He asks a coworker where Elsie is, but she hasn’t come in yet. According to the system, she’s started her leave. Bernard doesn’t quite buy it and keeps looking into her last-known location. He runs into Theresa, who asks why he left so abruptly the other night. He has nothing to say to her and promises that their sexual relationship is over.Maeve wakes up back in the park and continues going about her day. She shuts off the player piano (No! That’s the best part of the show!) and realizes she repeats the first thing she says to Clementine every day. The cleaners arrive and freeze the scene, except for Maeve, who can’t be controlled so easily anymore. She subtly grabs a knife and pretends to be frozen, thinking they’re there for her. The men approach and take away Clementine instead.The cleaners enter Maeve’s brothel. (Credit: John P. Johnson/HBO)Theresa has a meeting with Charlotte Hale, the new executive director. She wants Theresa to get Dr. Ford under control. The board is going to ask him to retire and she needs Theresa to make sure he does. Together, they meet with Bernard and Ford to tell them about the “disturbing” things they found when they reviewed the update that added the reveries. They demonstrate with Clementine. They have another host that reads as human beat her up. Then, they wipe her memory and do it again. The second time, Clementine remembers what happened and fights back. She doesn’t respond to commands to stop moving either. Ashley Stubbs shoots her as she begins to advance on him.Theresa explains that the hosts have experienced a system failure causing them to overwrite their basic rules. They’re then able to remember things that happen to them. They’re able to hold grudges and act on them. As Bernard was supposed to make sure the update was safe, and sent it live even when his subordinates brought up this exact issue, Charlotte fires him. She orders that all hosts that received the update should be lobotomized and rebuilt from the ground up.We check back in with William and Dolores, who we haven’t seen in a couple weeks. Dolores still doesn’t trust Lawrence. He understands and feels no remorse for screwing them over. Dolores and William get a chance to talk about what they’re looking for. William always wanted to live inside one of his books growing up and the park makes him feel like he is. Dolores says she’s searching for the maze because she wants to be free to live in the moment.Evan Rachel Wood, Jimmi Simpson (Credit: John P. Johnson/HBO)William senses that she’s starting to like him and tells her he has a fiance waiting back home, but he’ll still help her find what she’s looking for. She runs into the next car and cries. William follows her and they sleep together. The next morning, William says he’s figured out that the park shows a person who they really are and thanks Dolores for allowing him to leave Logan behind and tell him what he really thinks of him.The train is ambushed by the confederados, who shoot up the train with a machine gun. Lawrence sends a dead body filled with nitro at them on a horse and blows it up. He, William and Dolores escape the ensuing shootout and come to the canyon that Dolores remembers from her dream. It’s this week’s reminder that the cinematography in this show can really blow you away. Lawrence asks William to help him fight the confederados, but he decides to stay with Dolores.Bernard confronts Theresa about using hosts to send data outside the park. She says she’s doing it for the company. She wants to make sure the data survives in case Ford destroys everything on his way out. He also says her demonstration was clearly scripted and not actually a result of the reverie update. She was apparently right about them not knowing how the hosts work. Bernard says he has to show her the unregistered hosts that Ford is keeping in the park.Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) is acting a little different. (Credit: John P. Johnson/HBO)They get to the house and look around. Bernard says the reason no one knew about the house was because the hosts were programmed not to see it. Theresa asks what’s behind a door and Bernard asks, ‘What door?” Starting to see where this is going. Theresa leads him down into a basement where they find machines building new hosts. Theresa finds design documents for Dolores and one for Bernard. When she asks him to take a look at it, he says it doesn’t mean anything to him: the same response a host gives when they see a photo from the outside world.Ford appears, revealing that Bernard only brought Theresa down there on his orders. Bernard has a brief crisis when he learns his son isn’t real, but Ford commands him to stop. Ford tells Theresa he has no intention of letting the corporate suits take the park away from him. Every once in a while, they send someone to test him. This time, it was her. He says in order to restore the situation to what it was, there needs to be a blood sacrifice. He orders Bernard to kill her. It’s implied that Ford killed Arnold years ago.Maeve wakes up as Felix is repairing her and demands that he find Clementine for her. He sees that she’s in another room and takes her there just in time to see Sylvester lobotomize her. Later, Sylvester tells her that if he hadn’t done it, someone else would and there would have been questions about why he refused. Maeve shuts him up and demands that they help her escape the park. If they don’t, she says, she’ll kill them.Thandie Newton, Angela Sarafyan. (Credit: John P. Johnson/HBO)Man, this weeks episode went places. The William and Dolores story mainly focused on their relationship, with the real meat of this episode happening outside the park. I still can’t get over the fact that Bernard is a host and now I want to go back and see if there were any hints throughout the series. Of course a reveal like that only raises more questions. How many other hosts are working behind the scenes of the park? How many people has Ford killed before?Also, Theresa brought up once again that the board has different intentions for the park beyond letting rich people play cowboy. We still don’t know exactly what those intentions are and probably won’t for a long time. For now, we have one host trying to escape and another that has everyone fooled into thinking he’s human. Knowing we’ll have to wait until next week to see how those two stories shake out makes Sunday feel so far away. Stay on targetlast_img read more

This Enormous Kirby Plush Can Be Your Big Fluffy Friend

first_imgStay on target Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. What’s cuter than a big, huggable Kirby doll? The answer to that is, well, basically nothing. That’s why this enormous and slightly impractical Kirby doll is such an awesome creation. On one hand, it’s too cute for words. On the other, what would you ever do with it? It’s ripe for lots of big, strong hugs, and you can roll it around your house. It’s also soft and fluffy, and it’s available via Premium Bandai now.The 24-inch in diameter Kirby plush is supposedly three times the character’s real size, and it comes with a lot of love to spread around. The huge doll, which is carrying a Mega Tomato, also weighs 12.1 pounds. In case you need something to carry around your house and replace your pet, this Kirby can fill the role for you. It’ll set you back $142 if you want to take the plunge.If plush toys aren’t your thing, there’s also a set of special Kirby-branded mango cakes, with delicious sweet bean paste filling in two different, festive Kirby designs. You can buy them via Premium Bandai as well, and they look positively scrumptious. You can enjoy them while hanging out with your Kirby plush, which sounds like a pretty full afternoon.There’s a lot of fun Kirby goodness coming up, mainly in the shape of the upcoming Nintendo Switch title Kirby Star Allies, which is releasing March 16. In the game, you’ll journey throughout various worlds as the pink puffball and implement new and old abilities from throughout the Kirby series as you take on various enemies. It’s going to be a far more full-fledged title than the previous Kirby title for Nintendo 3DS, Kirby Battle Royale, so keep an eye out for it to hit store shelves. Right now is looking like a great time to be a fan!center_img The Ultimate Super Smash Bros. Character Guide: King DededeThe Ultimate Super Smash Bros. Character Guide: Meta Knight last_img read more

SJM buys HK680 million of Hong Kong office space for consolidation and

first_imgMacau gaming concessionaire SJM Holdings has reached an agreement to purchase the entire 18th floor of China Merchants Tower at Shun Tak Centre in Hong Kong from a subsidiary of its owner, STDM.SJM revealed details of the purchase in a filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on Friday, with the transaction costing HK$680 million, to be paid to current owner Shun Tak Centre in two stages. Shun Tak Centre is 30% owned by STDM. RelatedPosts SJM and China Duty Free Group sign binding agreement for Grand Lisboa Palace store Load More Chief Executive says current Macau gaming concessions won’t be extended beyond 2022 Analysts see long-term opportunity in undervalued Macau stock prices Outlining the reasons behind the purchase, SJM said the property was intended for self-use and consolidation of various existing offices of the group into a single location.“The board considers that (i) the acquisition is expected to improve operation efficiency by consolidating the group’s various offices into a single location; (ii) the property is a convenient location for travelling to and from Macau; and (iii) the property provides sufficient floor space to accommodate the group’s future expansion,” it said.last_img read more

State Senator Bruce Tarr Praises New Criminal Justice Reforms

first_img(NOTE: State Senator Bruce Tarr represents the 1st Essex and Middlesex District, which includes Wilmington.)BOSTON, MA — On Friday, Governor Charlie Baker signed into law two pieces of legislation, and filed a third, that reforms many components of our criminal justice system. These bills are a result of years of examination, input, and bipartisan collaboration.As one of six members of the conference committee which wrote the final bill, An Act Relative to Criminal Justice Reform, I am grateful for the work of the Baker administration, my colleagues in the House and Senate, and the efforts of so many people across the state. Clearly, more reforms and safeguards are needed and I appreciate that Governor Baker has filed additional legislation on Friday, An Act Building on Criminal Justice Reform, to take further steps towards a justice system that serves our needs.These bills create a balance of opportunities for treatment and rehabilitation while enhancing public safety by treating those who would threaten it with serious consequences. Many important goals championed by the Republican Caucus are included in the new laws – protecting the public, supporting our law enforcers, strengthening penalties for distributing dangerous drugs such as Fentanyl and Carfentanil, greater accountability and oversight of forensic evidence and its analysis, and supports for those who have been victims of sexual assaults.The legislation makes modifications to the criminal justice system that will empower police officers to crack down on the opioid crisis by holding drug traffickers more accountable. In addition, there are several adjustments to mandatory minimum sentences, increased potential fines for corporate manslaughter, and changes that shield juvenile arrests from public police logs.Other components include protections for witnesses and their families, tougher penalties for repeat operating under the influence offenders, mandatory minimums for assault and battery on a police officer and for serious bodily injury as well as linking state drug classifications to emergency federal drug scheduling.(NOTE: The above press release is from State Senator Bruce Tarr’s blog.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedState Senator Bruce Tarr’s Bill Honors World War II Era Cadet NursesIn “Government”Tarr, Robertson & Gordon Secure $30,000 In State Funding For Wilmington Senior Center ImprovementsIn “Government”Tarr Praises New Law Preserving Rape & Sexual Assault Evidence Kits For At Least 15 YearsIn “Government”last_img read more

Mother of SSC candidate held with leaked question

first_imgA woman was held near Government PN High School in Rajshahi city along with a ‘leaked Secondary School Certificate question paper’ on Saturday.The detainee, also mother of an SSC candidate, was solving a Math question after collecting the ‘leaked question’ over her mobile hand set around 10:00am, said witnesses.When other guardians queried about the matter, she tried to leave the place hurriedly. Later, the guardians caught her and handed over her to police, reports UNB.Boalia police station officer-in-charge Aman Ullah said a woman was held along with a ‘leaked question’. “But details cannot be disclosed until today’s [Saturday’s] exam is finished.”On 4 February, the government declared a bounty of Tk 500,000 each for handing over to the authorities the criminals involved in question paper leakage on social media sites.last_img

Benefits Played Up

first_imgDuring a recent community meeting, representatives from Pepco Holdings and energy giant Exelon Corporation, D.C. businesses, nonprofits, and residents along with Maryland advocates of Exelon gathered to discuss the pending benefits that a possible merger between the two energy companies could give the city. However, not all of the attendees were convinced.The Integrated Community Meeting, held at the Pepco Edison Place Gallery in Northwest D.C. on Oct. 26 went over the recent settlement that was reached between the two companies, the D.C. government, the Office of the People’s Counsel and the District Attorney’s Office, among others. The settlement has been submitted to the District’s Public Service Commission for review.“We will be a company that will be your partner in every respect,” William Von Hoene, Jr., senior executive vice president and chief strategy officer for Exelon, based in Chicago, told the gathering of about 100 people.  “This is the center of the country, this is where it happens. This is the place in which policies are determined, it’s the place in which the whole world looks at the country and says ‘how are we doing?’”.Von Hoene, along with Dave Velazquez, executive vice president of power delivery at Pepco, listed several of the 120 benefits that would be offered to residents through the settlement, including a customer investment fund of $72.8 million for bill credits, low-income energy assistance, renewable energy and energy efficiency programs in the District. The merger would also ensure that customers will only pay for the energy services they are given that would not include any additional cost from other business and plants under Exelon.“We’re committing to improving reliability and beating every standard set by the Public Service Commission from 2016 to 2020,” he said, highlighting the financial penalties put in place, for the company, if they fail to meet the new standards. Velazquez said the companies are trying to improve reliability without increasing costs, which was also included in the settlement agreement.  He also stressed that neither Pepco, nor Exelon, have control over energy rates, which are set by the commission.Another benefit under the settlement would provide $5.2 million for workforce development with local institutions including the University of the District of Columbia and the Department of Employment Services. Under the settlement the companies have also committed to hiring 102 new union workers in D.C. and no involuntary terminations for the next five years.Calvin Butler, CEO of Baltimore Gas and Electric, gave two examples of the progress in employee procurement and retainment in Baltimore after Exelon merged with Constellation Energy in 2012.  “We had a two-year commitment, Pepco has a five year, so very similar concerns,” he said. “After that two years, we continued to grow our business and our employee-base.”Butler also gave an example of the company’s implementation of smart meters, which makes the meter reader’s job obsolete. “We didn’t block anyone out, we said ‘where do you want to go, and let’s make sure you have a place to land,’” he said.According to a handout, given at the meeting, the merger would also include:$25.6 million offset distribution rate increases for residential customers through March of 2019.A one-time direct bill credit to customers of about $50 within 60 days of the merger’s completion.$16 million for low-income energy assistance, including weatherizing homes and supplementing D.C.’s Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).Service reliability improvements to reduce the number and length of power outages with more crews and resources.But, not all of the attendees at the meeting automatically agreed that the merger settlement would be a good proposition for city residents.According to an advocate for the community affairs of Ward 8, who preferred not to be named, the pending merger settlement seemed as if higher management job opportunities were not going to be offered to residents. She told the AFRO that it seemed as if the companies were looking to fill more “vocation, non-college” level positions. The community advocate also questioned the rate increases after 2019, since, she said, the meeting did not offer a precise projection, even though a projected increase of about 6 percent was informally given.A statement, released Oct.28, from PowerDC, part of the opposition against the Pepco, Exelon merger, said the Commission ruled that the next steps in its review of the merger will take place before the end of 2015, with public hearings to be held the first week of December to debate Exelon’s settlement with Mayor Muriel Bowser.last_img read more

Leap of faith

first_imgA  fun filled story telling session was held at the launch of part ll in Hanuman Trilogy Amma, Tell Me How Hanuman Crossed the Ocean!’.The story-telling session was attended by Delhi’s mommies along with their kids. Spotted at the event were famous author Sreemoyee Piu Kundu, choreographer Aparna Behl , Simran Sawhney, photographer Sumiko Murgai Nanda along with their kids who had a gala time at the interactive session.As author Bhakti Mathur read out the characters from the book, Hanuman, bear, snake and Lankini came alive when the children donned the costumes of the characters from the book and engaged in role plays.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The fun and joy of exploring the mythological world left the children thoroughly entertained. Face painting and tattoo sessions was another crowd pleaser at the event. Speaking at the launch at Caffe Tonino, Mathur said, “I’m excited to launch my second book on Hanuman triology and thrilled to see that the kids in India enjoy mythology in today’s technology driven environment”. “Hanuman is a great teacher as he teaches us the value of life and the mantra to live by —with great power comes with great responsibility”, she further added.  In this new and epic story, Hanuman leaps across a mighty ocean, with his forgotten powers regained, and with his strength, wit and devotion.It is a story of how he charmed a mountain, defeated a dragon and crushed a snake. The story talks about the mighty Hanuman who fought the powerful guard of Lanka, on his great mission for Rama’s sake.last_img read more

Adenovirushit children vulnerable to bronchiolitis say doctors

first_imgKolkata: Children affected with adenovirus are a cause of concern for the city doctors as the affected patients often develop respiratory problems even after they are released from the hospitals.According to the doctors, the children, who are once affected with adenovirus, are later developing serious lung infection which the doctors termed as ‘bronchiolitis obliterans (BO). Otherwise known as popcorn lung and constrictive bronchiolitis, the disease causes obstruction to the smallest airways of the lungs (bronchioles) due to inflammation. Symptoms include a dry cough, shortness of breath and feeling tired. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe affected children are developing lung infection, which eventually leads to pneumonia. Children are more susceptible to the virus due to their low immunity. The infection can spread fast among the children who tend to be in close contact with the affected ones. Earlier, it was difficult to identify the virus. Respiratory problem, sore throat, fever, persisting cough and cold are the signs of the virus. It has also been learnt that some children and a few elderly patients have been under Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in statemedication at various hospitals in the city with similar symptoms. More than 100 children have been affected with adenovirus in past couple of months. What is worrying for the doctors is that many of the children who return home after being cured, again complaining respiratory distress. As there is no specific medicines for the disease the situation is further complicated. It may be mentioned here that more than 20 babies were admitted at the Institute of Child Health with adenovirus most of them have been released from the hospital after treatment. Many other private hospitals in the city also admitted patients with the same disease. The babies who have been admitted to the hospital are aged between four months and one year. Adenovirus can be a serious cause when it comes to morbidity and mortality. According to a senior official of a private hospital in Park Circus, there is also a crisis of influenza vaccine due to the rising number of viral infection patients in the past three months. There is no proper vaccine for adenovirus and hence the doctors are administering other medicines to the patients. If fever keeps recurring despite medication, the patient should be taken to the hospital and also if they complain of irritation in eyes or muscle pain. Adenovirus appears to be like a common respiratory tract infection. Antibiotics do not properly work when the patient is affected with this virus. If the symptoms persist for more than two to three days, the cause should get investigated without further delay, a senior official of the private hospital said.last_img read more

3 ForwardLooking Mindsets Entrepreneurs Need to Have About AI

first_img The concept of artificial intelligence (AI) has been around for some time. Government organizations and big enterprises have been experimenting with this technology for decades.  Related: 5 Innovative Ways Artificial Intelligence Is Advancing TechnologyThe results have led to all kinds of solutions that make the world smarter and more efficient. However, AI’s mass implementation into the small-business sector is still relatively new.For entrepreneurs who aren’t specialized in areas like machine-learning and big data analytics, reading up on the potential of AI and how to incorporate it into everyday business practices can certainly be overwhelming.Yet, ignoring the AI trend is simply not an option for either new or veteran entrepreneurs. What’s more, the skeptical mindset and overall resistance many of them have long had about and to new technology need to be left behind.Here are three mindsets entrepreneurs need to have about AI if they want to use it to improve their day-to-day operations:1. AI can be used to refine employee performance.Using AI to enhance the customer journey is the concept that’s gotten most of the media coverage thus far. However, one of the most important things to remember about business is that providing a stellar customer experience starts on the inside.So, if your employees aren’t able to do their jobs effectively, this problem will inevitably spill to the outside. When you are doing your research on AI,  a good mindset will revolve around the question: “How can this be used to improve the employee experience?”Fortunately, plenty of AI tools exist and can be game-changers for both predicting and improving employee performance. Some of them can even be applied before a new employee is brought on board.For instance, during the hiring process, AI resources can be used to screen candidates with specialized assessments, to gauge key traits like problem-solving ability, communication skills, organization and more. From there, machine-learning capabilities draw on a number of publicly available and company-specific datasets to predict how a particular employee might perform on the job.Related: Robots Are Our Friends — How Artificial Intelligence Is Leveling-Up MarketingIn terms of using AI to improve employee performance, there are a number of tools you can use to track each person’s performance metrics and compare them to your overall ROI. From there, AI tools are equipped to identify patterns that determine the average performance of a certain department and traits in the top performers, and, of course, the sources of weak spots.These detailed insights can then be used to create a “gold standard” that employees need to be held to. This might relate to time management, email habits, approaches to multitasking and other factors. Furthermore, these clear standards of achievement can essentially eliminate bias in the workplace.According to a study by Accenture, businesses that successfully apply AI could potentially increase productivity (and profitability) by nearly 40 percent over the next two decades.The takeaway: Adopting the mindset that AI is a powerful tool to refine employee performance is one of the best things you can do for long-term growth.2. Investing in AI can eliminate many monotonous, time-consuming tasks.One of the biggest fears employees have about AI is that it will eventually take a huge number of human-operated jobs. While there is certainly no denying this, AI can also be a lifesaver for newer entrepreneurs looking to get their startups off the ground.In short, AI can automate many of the day-to-day tasks that in previous decades required either that an entrepreneur either: (a) work endless hours or (b) increase his or her overhead by hiring an employee on a shoestring budget.To put things in perspective, sales-forecasting is one of AI’s most crucial roles in today’s business landscape. Many of these tools draw on a wide range of data sets to predict spikes in demand, to spot patterns that could potentially lead to drops and to create a reliable pipeline. Tools like Pipedrive or Aviso are great for this purpose and can save a business owner huge amounts of time currently spent on monotonous tasks like data entry and research.Additionally, AI can eliminate a great deal of the legwork involved in building a social presence — something that is indispensable these days. Manually conducting research on social media trends and insights is a task that requires around-the-clock attention.But that’s no longer neccesary because AI tools like Hootsuite and Brandwatch allow you to keep close tabs on your business name, competitors and certain keywords across the major platforms. From there, you can pinpoint patterns that give you an idea of which topics to post about, when to post, key bits of information to include and more.The takeaway: Sales-forecasting and social media monitoring are just two of the cumbersome tasks AI can streamline. Plain and simple: If you want to “future-proof” your company, you need to look for ways to automate the grunt work. This is a mindset that many of the big companies (Amazon in particular) have fully embraced.3. AI can be used to provide granular customer service insights.Customer service is one of the newest frontiers of AI. Moreover, it is one of the areas that involves the most skepticism about using technologies. Naysayers tend toward the mindset that customer service is purely a human-to-human entity, and should stay that way.Now, if you firmly stand behind this ideology, more power to you. However, it’s important to at least be knowledgeable about how AI can be used in this field. If you aren’t familiar with chatbots, for instance, you need to look into what they can do and how they can help your business.Due to the fact they are machine-operated, bots can be used to provide instantaneous customer service 24/7. And this is just the tip of the spear in terms of chatbots’ capabilities. Many of these applications use machine learning and natural language processing (NLP) to measure customer inquiries and identify common threads.For example, if you use a tool like ManyChat or Chatfuel, you can get in-depth reporting on the demographics of the people who interact with your chatbots, the common phraseology they use and the solutions that remedy their questions.The best part about AI-powered chatbots is that each customer interaction yields granular insights that can be used to improve the next. In other words, chatbots are constantly working to improve the accuracy of your customer service.On a more in-depth level, these bots can be further programmed to go beyond the FAQ level. They can be used to make upsells and cross-sells at the most opportune times in a conversation.For example, let’s say you run a SaaS company for project management. If someone reaches out via chat to ask a question about the functionality of file storage, you can insert an upsell for an upgrade that provides more space and versatility.The takeaway: Replacing humans entirely in customer service might be a long shot. However, approaching this function with the mindset that AI bots could handle common inquiries to your business might do wonders for you in terms of speedier assistance and the freeing-up of your customer service reps’ time to tackle more important issues.ConclusionAdopting an AI-friendly mindset toward business operations is a bit more complex than a quick attitude change. Knowing where and how to invest in AI is a task that requires a lot of research and critical analysis of your business structure.Related: Add SEO to the List of Everything Being Transformed by Artificial IntelligenceFrom a general perspective, though, you need to view AI as part of the view that your business is a constant work in progress. The successes and failures of yesterday need to have a strong influence over what you do today and tomorrow. In a nutshell, the future is what AI is all about.  Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Register Now » 7 min read Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global July 30, 2018 Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.last_img read more

Answering your property questions

first_imgMy husband and I bought a flat in Limassol in 1978 and it is in our both names (we are American citizens). We have a daughter, if anything happen to both of us can our daughter take the flat without any special paper from a lawyer?Tima ConklinNo. You need to go through the process and have an administration. A simple way out is to transfer the property to your daughter and reserve on title a life interest for both of you.Regards,AP Loizou We live in the UK and are looking at buying a holiday home in Cyprus. The developers have bought the land but nothing is built yet, they are in planning stages.Planning is likely to go through in March and the build will take approx 18 months. They are saying we only have to pay 5% VAT and they will apply to the tax office as it’s our main residence. Knowing the VAT laws are changing in January, is this correct? What if we wanted to sell in say 3 years?We could put a deposit down to secure the plot but we are worried as we have never bought out of the UK before.Kind regardsAmandaVAT on houses 5% or 19% will not change. As you say the 5% refers to permanent residences only. You need to carry out your due diligence through the use of an advocate and I suggest that you wait for the issue of the planning permit first prior to paying anything. The advocate will check for any mortgages and other incumbrances if any.If you decide to sell your house prior to the 10 year period, you must refund to the Tax Authorities the VAT.Regards,AP LoizouYou May LikeDr. Marty ProPower Plus Supplement3 Dangerous Foods People Feed Their Dogs (Without Realizing It)Dr. Marty ProPower Plus SupplementUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoFreedom Debt ReliefPeople In Heavy CC Debt Are In For Big SurpriseFreedom Debt ReliefUndo Turkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoConcern over falling tourism numbersUndoPensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more

House prices up 04 in Q3 CBC says

first_imgHouse prices continued their quarterly recovery for the fifth consecutive quarter in July to September and rose by 0.4 per cent compared with April to June, the Central Bank of Cyprus said.Compared with the third quarter of 2016, house prices rose in July to September by 1.4 per cent, the central bank said in a statement on its website on Tuesday. The increase was mainly on a 3.7 per cent annual increase of flat prices against a 0.7 per cent rise in house prices.“Annual increases were recorded in the majority of the main and secondary indicators, and the highest were recorded in the Nicosia and Limassol districts,” the central bank said.House and flat prices rose in the third quarter by a quarterly 0.3 per cent and 0.5 per cent respectively, the bank supervisor said. House prices recovered for a third consecutive quarter while those for apartments rose for the fifth quarter in a row.The residential property price index recovered to 74.3, the highest since the second quarter of 2015. Home prices peaked in the third quarter of 2008 and fell to 73.2 in the second quarter of 2016, the lowest point since its introduction 12 years ago.“The real estate sector’s prospects are favourable,” the central bank said. “Building permits and demand for housing loans are recording an increase while construction activity continues to recover. However, non-performing loans remain a challenge and an important obstacle towards full recovery while the impact of the imposition of value added tax (VAT) on plots is still undetermined”.“Still, expected growth in the economy in general is believed to support the sector,” it added.Compared with April to June, house prices rose in the second quarter in all districts except Paphos where they dropped by 0.8 per cent, the bank supervisor said. Home prices rose by 0.4 per cent in Nicosia, 0.6 per cent in Limassol, 1 per cent in Larnaca and 1.1 per cent in Famagusta.Compared with the third quarter of 2016, home prices rose in July to September by 2.6 per cent in Limassol, 1.3 per cent in Nicosia and 1.6 per cent in Famagusta, the central bank said. They fell in Larnaca and Paphos by 0.7 per cent and 0.8 per cent, respectively.You May LikeSUVs | Search AdsThese SUVs Will Take Your Breath Away. Research 2019 Luxury Crossover SUV DealsSUVs | Search AdsUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoLivestlyChip And Joanna’s $18M Mansion Is Perfect, But It’s The Backyard Everyone Is Talking AboutLivestlyUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoCypriot tycoon launches ‘Bank of Cannabis’UndoThree arrested in connection with hotel theftsUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more