Renewed tensions between Cuba and the US wont impact Canada says Trudeau

first_imgOTTAWA – It will be business as usual for Canada and Cuba despite a renewed hardening of relations between the communist island nation and the United States, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday.Trudeau was asked about U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to restore some travel and economic restrictions on Cuba, partially turning back the clock on an easing of tensions embarked upon by Democratic predecessor Barack Obama.While noting that Canada has long taken a softer line with Cuba than U.S. governments, Trudeau said he doesn’t expect the renewed economic and travel restrictions would hurt Canadian business and tourism ties with Cuba.“We have tremendous respect and a constructive relationship with the United States, but in the matter of Cuba there’s always been a certain amount of disagreement,” Trudeau said during a joint news conference with Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel.“The investments in Cuba by Canadian companies and business people, the opportunities for tourism, for trade and for mutual benefit in this relationship will certainly continue.“I don’t see anything new in the dynamic between Canada and Cuba other than a continued desire to work together for mutual benefit.”Trump complained during a speech in Miami earlier Friday that Cuba had secured far too many concessions from the Obama administration, and announced that penalties imposed on Cuba would remain so long as the Raul Castro government held political prisoners, abused dissidents and restricted freedom of expression.In a bid to increase pressure on Cuba’s government, Trump said individual “people-to-people” trips by Americans to Cuba, allowed by Obama for the first time in decades, would once again be prohibited.The U.S. government will also monitor other trips to ensure student travellers, for example, are pursuing a “full-time schedule of educational exchange activities.”But diplomatic ties would not be cut, with embassies in Havana and Washington remaining open. U.S. airlines and cruise ships would also still be allowed to carry passengers to and from Cuba.Trump said he wanted to ramp up pressure to create a “free Cuba,” predicting an end to communism in the country “in the very near future.”Trudeau said there have been no conversations with Cuban officials about what role Canada might play in helping to foster a better U.S.-Cuba relationship.The prime minister’s late father, Pierre Trudeau, caused an international stir in 1976 when he became the first NATO leader to visit Fidel Castro’s Cuba as the Cold War was raging, developing a close bond with Castro that lasted for decades.Fidel Castro was among Pierre Trudeau’s pallbearers at his funeral in 2000.There are dozens of Canadian businesses operating in Cuba, including banks, mining companies, a brewery and restaurant franchises.— with files from the Associated Presslast_img read more

Energy giant BP says 3Q earnings more than double

first_imgLONDON – Energy giant BP says third-quarter earnings more than doubled as it reaped the benefits of higher oil prices and streamlined operations.Underlying replacement cost profit jumped to $3.84 billion, the highest quarterly figure in five years, from $1.87 billion in the same quarter last year. The figure, which excludes one-time items and fluctuations in the value of inventories, is the industry’s preferred gauge of earnings.Net income rose 89 per cent to $3.35 billion.Oil companies are profiting after they cut costs and sold assets to adjust to an era of lower oil prices when crude dropped below $30 a barrel in January 2016. Brent crude averaged $75.16 a barrel for the most recent quarter — 44 per cent higher than a year earlier.last_img

Theyre gone Theyre done says Premier Ford of GM plant in Oshawa

first_imgTORONTO — Ontario Premier Doug Ford says the closure of the General Motors plant in Oshawa, Ont., is “done” and there’s nothing the government can do to change the automaker’s plan.Ford says he asked GM in a phone call on Sunday whether there was anything the province could do to keep the plant open, and was told it could not.He says instead, the province will immediately bolster unemployment insurance and retraining measures to help the nearly 3,000 workers who will lose their jobs.The Oshawa plant is one of five in North America that the automaker plans to shut down as it restructures to cut costs and focus more on autonomous and electric vehicles.The union representing the Oshawa auto workers says it will put up what it calls “the fight of our lives” to keep the plant open and save thousands of jobs.Ford says the province will extend employment insurance coverage from 45 weeks to 50 weeks to all regions affected by the Oshawa plant closure.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Northern Uganda improving but still faces problems – UN humanitarian chief

15 May 2007Meeting with local authorities and aid workers in northern Uganda, the United Nations humanitarian chief warned today that the region still faces serious problems despite the recently improved security situation. Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs John Holmes spent much of the day in Kitgum district, where about 260,000 IDPs are living in 23 settlements because of the 21-year conflict between Government forces and the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).He visited the new settlement site of Labworomor, where many IDPs have gathered recently.During meetings with local authorities in Kitgum, Mr. Holmes stressed that problems remain in the north despite the signing of a cessation of hostilities agreement last year by the two sides.Peace talks between the Government and the LRA resumed at the weekend in Juba, southern Sudan, but Mr. Holmes – who is also UN Emergency Relief Coordinator – said the international community must continue its support to the recovery process and to locals as they try to return to their former homes.“We will continue to help in camps for the displaced and in settlement sites, and, with the Government of Uganda, we will help with resettlement and reconstruction,” he said. “We know it will be a long and often difficult process. There is an awful lot still to do and an awful lot still needed.”Thousands of people have been killed and an estimated 1.5 million others have become displaced in Uganda or in neighbouring countries since the LRA insurgency began in 1986. During that time, the rebel group has become notorious for abducting children and then using them as soldiers or porters, while subjecting some to torture and allocating many girls to senior officers in a form of institutional rape.In October 2005 the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued its first-ever arrest warrants against Joseph Kony, the LRA leader, and four of the group’s commanders – Vincent Otti, Okot Odhiambo, Dominic Ongwen and Raska Lukwiya – on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity.Tonight Mr. Holmes is scheduled to visit an IDP camp at Namokora that is also home to numerous ex-combatants in the conflict, and he is expected to hold talks there with aid workers, elders, and women and children who had been previously abducted.Earlier today in Kampala, the national capital, the Under-Secretary-General met Ugandan Prime Minister Apolo Nsibambi and the Minister of Disaster Preparedness and Refugees Tarsisi Kabwegyere. Yesterday he held what he described as “a lively exchange” with President Yoweri Museveni.Mr. Holmes said it was important to have a “triple effort” from the humanitarian community: providing aid to those living in IDP camps, helping those who are in the process of returning home; and supplying recovery aid for those who have already returned. read more

US officials to hold meeting on Alberta Clipper pipeline

by Steve Karnowski, The Associated Press Posted Mar 5, 2017 11:52 am MDT Last Updated Mar 5, 2017 at 12:40 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email MINNEAPOLIS – U.S. State Department officials will come to Minnesota on Tuesday to hold the only public meeting on a draft environmental review for the final segment of Enbridge Energy’s project to boost capacity in its Alberta Clipper pipeline, which carries Canadian tar sands oil across northern Minnesota to Superior, Wisconsin.The State Department’s four-year review concluded that there would be no significant environmental impacts from completing the project, which requires a presidential permit because the last remaining segment crosses the U.S.-Canadian border in North Dakota. But environmentalists and some Native American tribes dispute that and are gearing up for the meeting in the northern Minnesota city of Bemidji.Here’s a look at some issues involved:___THE PIPELINEEnbridge built the Alberta Clipper, also known as Line 67, in 2009 for $1 billion. Its capacity was 450,000 barrels per day. Enbridge later decided to nearly double that to 800,000 barrels; the Calgary, Alberta-based company did most of that by adding pumping stations along the route.Enbridge needs a presidential permit for the 3-mile segment where the 1,000-mile pipeline crosses the border. Getting the permit is a lengthy process. The Keystone XL pipeline that would run from Canada’s tar sands to Nebraska, for example, was derailed when President Barack Obama rejected its permit. President Donald Trump has invited Keystone XL developer TransCanada to reapply.Enbridge is operating the Alberta Clipper at full capacity with a temporary workaround. It built a detour to and from a parallel pipeline that crosses the border nearby and already has a permit. Opponents challenged the legality of that setup in court but lost.___WHY ENBRIDGE WANTS ITEnbridge spokeswoman Shannon Gustafson called the Alberta Clipper “a vital piece of energy infrastructure” that bolsters America’s energy security because it lessens the need for imports from unstable nations. Midwest refineries depend on the oil that Enbridge pipelines deliver, she said.“Pipelines continue to be the safest, most reliable means of transporting crude oil that Minnesotans and Midwesterners rely on in their daily lives,” Gustafson said.Other Enbridge projects in the works are a proposed replacement for its 1960s-era Line 3 that would follow part of the same corridor. In fact, the Alberta Clipper detour uses an upgraded section of Line 3 to cross the border. Line 3 is also drawing opposition from tribes and environmentalists.___THE OPPOSITIONA coalition of environmental and tribal groups opposes the Alberta Clipper because it carries tar sands oil, which they consider a bigger environmental threat than regular crude. The pipeline crosses the lake country of northern Minnesota, including the Leech Lake and Fond du Lac Ojibwe reservations. Opponents say it threatens ecologically sensitive areas, as well as resources such as wild rice that are important to the Ojibwe bands.Some of the leading opponents, including Winona LaDuke, executive director of Honor the Earth, were also active in the fight against the Dakota Access oil pipeline. LaDuke said protests that drew thousands to the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota have spawned new “water protectors” to oppose Enbridge.LaDuke is organizing a “Sustainability Summit” for Tuesday ahead of the State Department meeting. Her event will highlight clean energy alternatives. Participants will then march to the meeting and hold a rally that will include traditional Ojibwe drumming and dancing.___THE MEEETINGThe State Department is holding Tuesday’s meeting as part of the public comment period on the draft environmental review, which runs through March 27. The agency will consider those comments as it prepares the final version. The president must then determine whether issuing the permit is in the national interest.___Follow Steve Karnowski on Twitter at https://twitter.com/skarnowski . His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/steve-karnowski US officials to hold meeting on Alberta Clipper pipeline read more

Residence family celebrated at 37th annual Awards Dinner

Brock staff and students who contribute to the family feel of life in residence were recognized during a celebration on campus last week.More than 100 awards were presented at the 37th annual Residence Awards, held in Lowenberger Dining Hall on Friday, April 5.“The great part of these awards is watching everyone’s unbridled enthusiasm about residence life,” said Jamie Fleming, Brock’s Director of Residences. “It’s a good vibe. Everyone is genuinely pleased for whomever is receiving an award.”Fleming said everyone in attendance has contributed to residence life in some way, each doing their part to create the welcoming atmosphere it is known for.“Residence is more than just a place to eat and sleep. It’s about the people,” he said.Tammy Brown (MEd ’04), Manager, Residence Admissions and Administration, earned the Les McCurdy-Myers Award for her dedication to student leadership development. “Tammy is a valued resource and is constantly striving to provide the best possible experience for our students,” said Fleming.When Brown began working in Residences in 1995, there was an underlying theme that made an impression on her, one that still carries on today.“It’s all about family,” she said. “When I first started, there were six of us working full time in the Department of Residences. Now there are 22 full time staff.“The family has grown quite a bit, but we are all still connected. We all enjoy our jobs and we love working with the students.”Brown spent each of her five years as a student in residence.“And I’ve never left the field. I find it rewarding to work with students,” she said. “We see them at some of the best times of their lives and at some of their darkest, but I like knowing that someone is there for them, to support them and help guide them into the transition of adulthood.”The event’s other major award winners include Rachel Handley, Don of the Year; Will Durward, Head Resident of the Year; and Avery Erickson, Student of the Year.Kavya Kamalasanan Nandalan received the Shaeffe Hall Award, given to a student in residence with high academic standing and who has made a worthy contribution to residence life.The McBride Award, given to one student in every residence hall for contributing to the quality of residence life, was presented to: Carl Chunta (DeCew), Nicole Laframboise (Earp), Hana Mohamed Farook (Quarry View), Avery Erickson (Lowenberger) and Sarah Taylor (Village).“It’s exciting to see the growth in residence, which has evolved over time,” said Brown. “Events and programs focus on different things and the students’ interests are different. We have residence curriculum now instead of just learning outcomes or program requirements. We provide students with opportunities to grow, try things out and make mistakes, so that we can help them learn and grow.“I think everyone should live in residence, even if only for a year,” she said, “because it will have an immeasurable impact on you as a person.” read more

10 people that are even lazier than you are

first_imgSOMETIMES, THE THOUGHT of actually getting up off your arse and doing something is so horrifying that the easy way out seems like the only option.You’re not proud of your occasional laziness, but at least you’re not this bad.(We apologise in advance for the rage these images may induce.)1. Why? Source: Imgur2. Seriously?! Source: Imgur3. Inexcusable Source: Imgur4. *shakes head* Source: Imgur5. Can’t. Cope. Source: Bitsandpieces6. IT’S RIGHT THERE Source: Imgur7. Why can’t you just… Oh forget it Source: Imgur8. *twitch* Source: Imgur9. NOPE Source: Imgur10. ARRRGHHHH Source: Imgur9 very lazy things you definitely do all the time>8 shamelessly lazy cooking habits we can never admit to>last_img

Apple les nouveautés du Mac OS X Lion

first_imgApple : les nouveautés du Mac OS X LionÉtats-Unis – Le tant attendu Mac OS X 10.7 Lion a été dévoilé par Apple. Comme on pouvait s’y attendre, la firme à la pomme a choisi d’associer les points forts d’iOS à son nouveau système d’exploitation Lion. La version iLife 11 cherche à simplifier la vie de l’utilisateur, notamment en se rapprochant des fonctionnalités présentes sur 95% des iPhone et iPad.On retrouve ainsi le springboard (qui prend cette fois l’appellation de launchpad) qui fonctionne exactement comme sur l’iPad. La fonctionnalité « Exposé » permet une meilleure gestion de l’espace tandis qu’il devient facile de naviguer entre les fenêtres par gestes tactiles.L’App Store et son installation automatique d’applications, celles-ci étant présentées sur l’écran d’accueil, se retrouve également. Pour mémoire, indépendant d’iTunes, le Mac App Store permet de se procurer des applications, d’en rechercher avec un moteur, de les installer simplement et de les maintenir à jour. Apple conservera 30% des revenus générés. Le Mac App Store ouvrira dans 3 mois pour Snow Leopard en attendant la disponibilité de Mac OS X Lion.À lire aussiApple Watch : jour de sortie, ce qu’il faut savoir de la montre connectéeAutre nouveauté, la fonctionnalité Mission Control, présentée comme un mélange d’Exposé, Spaces, Dashboard et des applications plein écran. L’accès à un élément du panorama affiché se fera en un clic, et toujours la possibilité de défilement d’un simple geste sur le trackpad. Apple parle du “quartier général” du Mac.Reste à savoir si cette généralisation/homogénéisation des fonctions présentes dans les iPhone et iPad saura séduire les utilisateurs des Mac de bureau. Apple n’a, de plus, pas dévoilé tout ce que proposera Mac OS X 10.7, il faudra attendre l’été 2011 pour tout savoir.Le 21 octobre 2010 à 12:47 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Ancelotti spoke about his future

first_imgArsene Wenger decided to leave Arsenal at the end of the ongoing season and Carlo Ancelotti has been one of the coaches linked with this vacant position – and he hasn’t ruled this option out yet.Carlo Ancelotti has been without a job since last year’s autumn as he was sacked by Bayern Munich after being beaten 3-0 by PSG in the Champions League – and he can be the man who is about to replace Wenger.The former Real Madrid coach spoke about his future as he said, according to Football Italia:Jose Mourinho is sold on Lampard succeeding at Chelsea Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho wanted to give his two cents on Frank Lampard’s odds as the new Chelsea FC manager, he thinks he will succeed.There really…“He [Wenger] decided to leave and it was a great gesture of solidity.”“He made history, and he has to be recognised for that. The Gunners know their own future, if their plans involve me then I’m pleased from a professional point of view, but at the moment there’s nothing else.”“My future depends on the chances and projects presented to me, it’s not only up to me. Right now though I’m focused on helping UEFA with this wonderful event for those in need.”last_img read more

Former Newcastle owner doesnt believe the team will win anything

first_imgFor Sir John Hall, the current administration is “further away than ever” from winning anything with the English Premier League clubThe last time Newcastle United won anything, was in the 2016-2017 season when they earned the English Championship title and a ticket to the Premier League.But they haven’t really won anything in First Division in a long time, and for former Magpie owner Sir John Hall, the current administration is “further away than ever.”“There have been a lot of ups and downs – probably a few more downs in recent times,” Hall was quoted by The Chronicle Live.Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedLiverpool legend Nicol slams Harry Maguire’s Man United form Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Steve Nicol believes Harry Maguire has made some “horrendous mistakes” recently, and has failed to find his best form since joining Manchester United.“I’ve often tried to get my head around why it’s been so long. In my day, maybe we tried too hard.”“Had we won the league under Kevin, I am convinced Newcastle’s history would be very different,” he added.“The harsh reality is that today, more than at any time since 1969, we are probably further away than ever from winning something.”“And there is no chance of doing so until there is change at the club,” he concluded.last_img read more

All public schools and nonessential Govt offices closed in Bahamas

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppBahamas, September 6th, 2017 – Nassau – As Hurricane Irma makes its way closer to the islands of the Bahamas, the Ministry of Education has taken advice from the meteorological office and officially closed all public schools throughout the commonwealth as of 3pm today.The Ministry says it will keep parents and teachers informed through its social media pages and official website. Additionally, an announcement was just made to officially advise that all non-essential government offices will also be closed at 5pm today until further notice.Other private businesses are closely following suit by closing their offices and stores this afternoon as a hurricane warning is now in effect.Story By: Kay-Marie Fletcher Seriously, Sixth Form registration begins at Clement Howell High Aug 15 Related Items:#HurricaneIrma, #HurricaneWarning, #magneticmedianews, #MinistryofEducation, #PublicSchool August 30th – One Year since Hurricane Irma named FortisTCI announces bid to hike electricity bills, cites record $42m response to hurricanes as destabilizing Recommended for youlast_img read more

Poll 23 cite staff demand as reason to offer driverless vehicles as

first_imgEmployee Benefits poll: Less than a quarter (23%) of employer respondents cite employee demand as a factor that would influence their decision to include driverless vehicles in company car schemes.A poll of www.employeebenefits.co.uk readers, which received 31 responses, also found that 26% of respondents view duty of care and safety concerns as a key decision-making factor for the provision of autonomous vehicles through company car schemes.Less than one-fifth (19%) of respondents identify purchase and maintenance costs as influencing the future inclusion of self-driving vehicles in company car schemes, 23% cite compliance and the development of the regulatory framework as a contributing factor, and just one in 10 (10%) view insurance costs as influencing their organisation’s decision to offer driverless vehicles to employees.In the Spring Budget 2017, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced an initial £270 million investment in the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) for 2017-2018, which will be used to develop disruptive technologies, such as robotic systems and driverless vehicles.Read more in What will company car schemes of the future look like?last_img read more

OneStop Shop New IDG Ad Unit Combines MicroSites Social Media

first_imgPricing includes a production fee that ranges from $5,000 to $25,000 depending on the complexity of the ad unit, and a CPM premium. “We not a creative agency, we’re about content,” says Rueb. “We launched the Nanosites as part of IDG Strategic Marketing Services and it’s now become a company-wide initiative. We’ve seen a lot of traction in the last three months.” IDG Strategic Marketing Services, in conjunction with Widgetbox, a provider of audience engagement and digital marketing solutions, has developed the Nanosite Ad Unit, which turns a digital ad into a microsite that automatically pulls in related social media commentary and editorial as well. The Nanosite offers the capabilities of landing pages, video, lead-gen forms and white papers directly within a single ad unit. The rich media components are trackable through DART. “We can track the user from the moment they engage with the unit until they leave,” says Jeremy Rueb, vice president of program development for IDG Strategic Marketing Services. “We’re doing things like demand generation that can capture the user’s name and e-mail.” In addition to the advertiser’s creative elements, the Nanosite takes feeds from all IDG sites that automatically generate content and social media commentary related to the topic. “Instead of the user clicking on the link and going to that article on say, Computerworld.com, the article is served up on the Nanosite,” says Rueb. “We can also pull in related social media commentary-anyone who has re-tweeted a comment or posted a link somewhere else, we can pull it into the platform. People don’t just want the vendor’s perspective or IDG’s perspective, they want to get all the highs and lows to make most informed decision.”While IDG handles the design for creative and the wireframes, the Nanosites use ClickTurn ad technology that pulls everything into a dynamic delivery system with reporting. “We’re not reinventing the platform every time-we’re using a standard platform to produce a new creative set every time we need to pitch to a client,” says Rueb.last_img read more

Time Inc Reports 32 Million Net Loss for Q2

first_imgAs it turns out, the acquisition of the American Express brands moderated Time Inc.’s numbers. While Time Inc. reported a 2 percent revenue decline, the drop would have been 7 percent minus the acquisition and the exit from the CNNMoney.com partnership.Total advertising revenues were up 3 percent to $461 million compared to the second quarter 2013, but again, excluding the American Express deal and the CNNMoney.com exit, revenues would have declined 3 percent. Print advertising edged up 1 percent to $387 million, but without the Amex titles added to the mix, print advertising declined 6 percent—”driven principally by fewer advertising pages sold,” says the company’s report.On the other hand, digital advertising did much better, shooting up 12 percent to $74 million for the quarter—about 16 percent of overall ad revenue. Circulation revenues dropped 5 percent to $258 million, which includes a $12 million hit from the wholesaler collapse. In all, the Source Interlink Distribution debacle negatively impacted revenues by $22 million.Revenues from the newsstand dropped 13 percent, but the company says this was largely due to the wholesaler transition. Nevertheless, there were “continued declines” that were offset by a price increase on People in March, which yielded a 4 percent boost. The company also took a $55 million hit for restructuring costs associated with headcount reductions during the first half. Accordingly, Time Inc. adjusted its 2014 outlook. Full-year revenues are now projected to be between $3.30 billion and $3.37 billion, down slightly from an initial projection of $3.35 billion to $3.42 billion.”We had a solid second quarter, we are making real progress, and we are executing,” says Time Inc. chairman and CEO Joe Ripp in a statement. “However, we still face secular challenges, and we are in the early innings of driving change.” In its first quarterly report since spinning off from Time Warner, Time Inc. posted a $32 million loss for the quarter, compared to $75 million in net income in the same period last year. Total revenues for the quarter were $820 million, compared to $833 million in Q2 2013.Events leading up to and just after the split from Time Warner, such as the acquisition of the American Express Publishing brands, the Source Interlink Distribution payment default and a planned headquarters relocation to downtown Manhattan all had major impacts.last_img read more

Tanana River erosion closes trail threatens cabins at Big Delta State Historical

first_imgAlaska State Parks officials have closed a section of trail in Big Delta State Historical Park near Delta Junction, because the Tanana River been cutting sharply into its southern bank where the trail is located. The extreme erosion now threatens a couple of historical cabins within the park. State and local officials are working on a plan to shore up the bank – and to come up with a way to pay for it.Download AudioDelta Historical Society member Mary Leith checks out the trail closure at Big Delta State Historical Park. (Photo by Tim Ellis, KUAC – Fairbanks)State Parks Superintendent Brooks Ludwig says the agency closed part of the trail earlier this month due to safety concerns.“The erosion has gotten within right almost up to the trail. And we had to close a section of the trail off, to protect the people there at the facility,” Ludwig said.Delta Historical Society board vice president Susie Sandy says the erosion also threatens important attractions in Big Delta State Historical Park.“We are very concerned,” Sandy said. “That’s a big part of our community, that site down there. And a big part of the history of Alaska.”Both of the WAMCATS cabins have been restored and contain carefully curated, historically accurate pieces to accurately depict the working conditions of the signal soldiers assigned to operate the telegraph system. (Photo by Tim Ellis, KUAC – Fairbanks)The park includes Rika’s Roadhouse, where travelers along the old Fairbanks-to-Valdez Trail could rest and, before a bridge was built, catch a ferry to get to the other side. The park also includes a couple of fully restored cabins used more than a century ago by signal soldiers with the Washington-Alaska Military Cable and Telegraph System, or WAMCATS.And one of the cabins sits maybe 20 feet from a dropoff formed by the Tanana chewing into the southern bank.“It would be just a travesty if those cabins go into the river,” Sandy said.Ludwig says after he learned about the problem a few weeks ago, during breakup, he brought in engineers to evaluate the situation. He says they’re working on a plan to shore up the bank employing the same technique used about 10 years ago on a stretch of the bank near Rika’s Roadhouse that the Tanana was eroding away.“To really tie the whole bank (together) along there and protect the entire park, we need to do another about 450 feet of bank stabilization,” Ludwig said.Rika’s Landing, a restored roadhouse, serves as the Big Delta State Historical Park’s main attraction. State Parks shored-up about 300 feet of the Tanana River’s south bank 10 years ago to halt erosion that could eventually have threatened Rika’s.(Photo courtesy of Alaska Department of Natural Resources)Ludwig says the engineers estimated the project would cost about $700,000 – which he acknowledged, considering the state’s fiscal crisis, might require requesting help from the federal government or other source.“The state’s broke, so it’s hard to come up with capital money at this time,” Ludwig said.Sandy says the historical society also doesn’t have money like that, but would be willing to spearhead an effort to fund-raise it.“The historical society is willing to step up and do whatever’s necessary, in terms of writing letters and contacting people,” she said.Sandy says her other and perhaps bigger concern is time. She says the work should be done soon – not five years from now, which is how long Ludwig says it took to get funding for the first bank-stabilization project 10 years ago.She says if the river gets too close to the cabins, she’d support jacking them up and moving them away from the river. Ludwig says he’d go along with that, but he’d prefer to keep them in their present location, to protect their historical authenticity.last_img read more

Petit first out of Unalakleet with Ulsom and Seavey behind

first_imgNic Petit mushing out of Unalakleet (Photo by Zachariah Hughes/ Alaska Public Media)Update: Nicolas Petit’s lead in the 2018 Iditarod disappeared Monday morning between Shaktoolik and Koyuk. Petit appeared to veer off the trail while crossing Norton Bay, and Joar Leifseth Ulsom passed him before Petit doubled back and found the trail again, according to the Iditarod’s GPS tracker.Ulsom arrived first in Koyuk a little after 2 p.m. Monday, followed by Petit about an hour later.—Original story:The three mushers leading this year’s Iditarod pack passed through Unalakleet yesterday afternoon. The racers arrived in very differing shape, offering signs of what could be ahead in the last stretch toward Nome.Mushers reached Unalakleet after crossing a long, historic portage route from Kaltag. It’s the stretch of the trail where the long, flat slog down the Yukon River finally relents and transforms into the fickle terrain and weather of the Bering Sea coast. When Nic Petit pulled in, the checkpoint is filled with onlookers as he quickly parks his dogs and dolls out a fatty meal that they start wolfing down.“I’ve been feeding them so much, I can’t believe how much they’re eating,” Petit said. “They’ve been eating better than they ever have.”Appetite is one of the most dependable measures of a team’s health and drive. Petit’s team looks strong, alert and energetic – indications they’ll be able to keep up their competitive pace. He rested for several hours in between checkpoints, but says its worth the commotion here at the edge of town to escape the afternoon’s warm sun and get the dogs more rest.“On this race I’ve camped more than I normally do, and that’s nice because you’re on your own with your dogs,” Petit said. “But I wake up when I start shivering, and then I go again. So, checkpoint I can skip the shivering part.”One of the liabilities being the front-runner is all the attention that it brings. Particularly in bigger communities like Unalakleet, where locals, tourists and members of the press mob mushers with cameras, autograph requests and questions. All at a time when they are sleep deprived and have to focus on their dog-care.As Mitch Seavey pulled in a few hours later, his dogs look tired, with the leader meandering on the way toward the race checker. Seavey is having problems with his team. A few were sick, some have minor aches and one hasn’t been eating well. Seavey’s granddaughter and son Danny are on hand, and after making headway with some of his chores the elder Mitch starts running down a list of issues.“All that deep snow and stuff, I think their back legs are just really tired,” Seavey said. “They’re willing to go fast when it doesn’t require a lot of pushing, but when it’s uphill or downhill nothing.”Mushers did not have an easy time on the Yukon. Seavey is sore and short on rest. He says this year’s race has taken a toll.“It’s hard to keep your attitude right, ya know,” Seavey said. “That river was so tough.”Not long after, the third musher to arrive is Joar Ulsom. Both he and his team look good. The dogs are perky, and Ulsom’s mood is equally bright as he briskly pulls off Velcro booties.“Oh, I’m probably sit down and have a good meal, I think,” Ulsom said.Ulsom had spent a few hours camped out along the trail, but wanted to stop again to charge his team and wait out the few remaining hours of hot sunlight.“It’s too hot, too slow going,” Ulsom said.For a few minutes, all three of the front-runners were in the checkpoint at the same time, eyeing one another, trying to glean what the competition is like before hitting the last 261 miles of the trail.After eating, Ulsom heads out at sunset, about an hour before Seavey, and in second position behind Petit.last_img read more

Anantapur A political gamechanger for YSRCP say observers

first_imgAnantapur: All is set by the Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy government to bring into operation the concept of village volunteers and for the establishment of village secretariats, which is bound to bring revolutionary changes at the village-level.The village volunteers and village secretariats concept are heading to usher in the original concept of Gram Swaraj. About 15,000 village volunteers and more than 1,000 village secretariats with a work force of about 10,000 secretariat workers will be the centre of attraction in the district. Also Read – TDP to open shelters for victims of attacks Advertise With Us This meant for creation of 25,000 new government jobs on an average in every district. MBAs, B Tech and M Tech educated youth are clamouring for the posts with the hope that the Jagan government would absorb them as regular government employees in future. Insiders in Panchayat Raj department say that Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy will not hesitate to regularise their services in future if the financial position of the State improved, as the very success of his government hinges on the good work done by the village volunteer army. Also Read – Quarry checks bring down granite production Advertise With Us Gone will now be the days when a voter had to run around political functionaries including MLA, Sarpanch or mandal president for a ration card, pension, house site or for any governmental benefit. A village volunteer, who takes political adoption of 50 families as a unit covering an entire village population will be the most important person.For all the government benefits, the people will not need to go to an MLA. Conspicuously, the MLA will be losing his importance. At the time of elections, the village volunteer will be playing an important role indirectly in moulding beneficiaries’ opinion to vote in favour of the ruling party. In a subtle manner, village volunteers are likely to play the role of opinion leaders. Advertise With Us Political observers see a grand political design and master political craftmanship in the invention and creation of the village volunteer concept which has more political connotations and in the process the political functionaries would become less important. When a village volunteer is responsible for 50 families and for all benefits to reach the beneficiary in 72 hours, there is no scope for domination by any political leader or claim credit for any benefit that reaches the beneficiary’s doorstep. The average citizen emerges as the very important person and not as the one who once ran from pillar to post for everything. The concept of village volunteer is very neatly crafted into a governmental system with political overtones. The Chief Minister will be directly controlling and monitoring the functioning of the volunteers as this is his ‘brainchild’. When the objective of meeting the demands of the 50 families for governmental benefits in 72 hours is achieved, it amounts to ushering in administrative reforms which in turn would revolutionise the people’s way of life. Training to village volunteers has already been given on the mandate to be given to them. District Panchayat Officer Ramnath Reddy told The Hans India that the trained volunteers have been asked to collect all information and needs of the 50 families that are allotted to them. A family wise survey on their needs and preparation of an action plan to bring them under beneficiary category. Creation of awareness on all State and Central government schemes and their application and constant interaction with the adopted families concerned will bring a sea change, he said. District Collector S Sathyanarayana said that from October 2nd onwards, the village secretariats and the village volunteers will have to deal directly with all applications for pensions, housing etc at village secretariat level. The secretariats will become fully functional from October.last_img read more

PSVR Expensive Fad or Worth the Price

first_imgStay on target Over the weekend, I got to spend some extensive time with Sony’s virtual reality peripheral, the PlayStation VR. I’ve tried virtual reality devices in the past (including PSVR) but was still on the fence about VR gaming in general. No longer limited to short press demos, I could finally sink my teeth into VR gaming and play it at home as most consumers would. I was now ready to answer the all-important question: is virtual reality gaming a revolution or is it just another fad fated to go the way of the Virtual Boy?The PSVR unit comes with an oversized instruction manual that explains how to hook the device up to the PlayStation 4 in easy to follow steps. Plugging in all of the necessary wires isn’t something that should give most folks out there any problems. However, calibrating one’s camera and then calibrating the VR headset can be a pain, especially if you’re disabled. Calibration issues aside, the PSVR is a breeze to install.I haven’t gotten to try the HTC Vive, but I have used the Oculus Rift on several occasions. While comfortable to wear, it is relatively heavy. In comparison, the PSVR headset is light. When you strap it onto your head, you barely notice it. There are buttons on the front visor and on the head strap that you can press to adjust the device to better fit your head. The headset itself does feel like a cheap plastic toy because of its weight. But it won’t strain your neck while playing, so this aspect is forgivable.Aside from the fact that you’re using a headset, playing games in VR isn’t wildly different than playing normally because you’re still using a controller. Some games did require the Move controllers, but most let you use a regular DualShock 4. Playing games like DriveClub, RIGS, or EVE Valkyrie is the same as playing anything else, only with the added field of view that comes from being able to move your head independently.The main thing you’ll notice when playing PSVR is how unimpressive the graphics look. If you’re used to gaming at 1080p or higher, the low resolution and lack of anti-aliasing will stand out. Games look this way because the machine has to run at 60-90 frames per second to lessen the effects of motion sickness in players. Also, the dual screens within the headset only output at 720p resolution. If you were looking for PSVR games to visually be on par with most current-gen games, then you’re going to be disappointed.There has been a lot of talk about the side effects of VR gaming. People have reported feeling light-headed, dizzy, or even nauseous. I experienced a side effect too: drowsiness. I was unable to play for more than an hour at a time before feeling extremely sleepy. This may sound like an odd side effect to have, but there is actually a good reason for it: eye strain.Anyone who reads books knows that it is common to feel drowsy during prolonged reading sessions. This is an effect of focusing one’s eyes on something for extended periods of time. There is also the fact that when reading or playing in VR, one doesn’t tend to blink as much. All things considered, I feel fortunate that the only adverse effect of virtual reality gaming was wanting to take a long nap.VR gaming isn’t a new thing but the technology has advanced to a point where it can be delivered in a credible and enjoyable way. No gaming experience out there will be as immersive as virtual reality gaming. Titles like RIGS and EVE Valkyrie let me live out fantasies of piloting a spaceship and a mech robot. I’ve done these things in other games before, but this time, I felt like I was actually inside the machine. Any qualms with the PSVR’s graphics are balanced out by the sense of immersion you’ll feel when playing any given game. Technologically speaking, this is no cheap gimmick.On the flip side, it is hard to say if the future of virtual reality gaming is assured. Look at the sales of the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. Despite their high price points ($600 and $800, respectively) they sold out rather quickly. After that? Sales have all but flatlined. At $400, the PSVR is selling very well. Not only is the price right, but one only needs a PS4, not an expensive PC, to run it. Despite all of this success, the PSVR could still flounder after the holidays are over.The biggest issue facing the PSVR is a shortage of compelling games. Right now, there is a distinct lack of any big titles for the peripheral. Aside from RIGS and a handful of others, most PSVR games are glorified tech demos. They may be very fun tech demos, but they don’t provide more than a few hours of amusement at most. We know that Robinson: The Journey and Resident Evil 7 are on the horizon, but what happens after that? The PSVR needs complete gaming experiences to thrive beyond 2017.Something that few are talking about is how long the PSVR will be in production. We have to assume the current iteration of the device will get a more powerful replacement in the next couple of years. The graphical limitations of the peripheral are evident, and an upgrade should help give it better resolution and fidelity. If PSVR is successful, what is to stop Sony from releasing a PSVR Pro when the inevitable PlayStation 5 is released? Some may decide to skip the current PSVR and wait for its successor. This machine will no doubt have a strong library of games from developers who have a solid grasp of what does and doesn’t work for VR gaming.PSVR is certainly not a waste of money for those who want to try out genuine virtual reality gaming at a decent price. Despite its subpar graphics and lack of substantive games, it is still a fun and unique experience. However, everyone else might be better off waiting until after Summer 2017 to see if the device is still being supported and if more robust gaming experiences are available. It is still too early to say what the fate of the PSVR and virtual reality gaming is, but we should have a clearer understanding of the situation by the middle of next year. Sony Patents New PSVR Motion ControllerHands-On: Firewall: Zero Hour is the Best VR Game I’ve Ever Played last_img read more

AP PHOTOS Srebrenicas annual sorrow

first_img Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Associated PressSREBRENICA, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) – Seventeen years later, Bosnian Muslims are still burying more victims from the Srebrenica massacre.Tens of thousands flooded into the Bosnian town whose name is now synonymous with genocide for funeral services Wednesday for 520 newly identified victims killed in 1995 by Serb forces.In a ceremony broadcast live across the country, emotions ran high, the passage of time seemingly not easing the pain of losing loved ones. Top Stories Comments   Share   Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates New high school in Mesa lets students pick career pathscenter_img Check your body, save your life Sponsored Stories Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family In all, some 100,000 people were killed in Bosnia’s 1992-95 war.Here’s a gallery of photos from Wednesday’s ceremony at Srebrenica.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) 5 treatments for adult scoliosislast_img read more

Castro Notes Accomplishments in Farewell Memo

first_img January 5, 2017 1,002 Views Castro Notes Accomplishments in Farewell Memo Julián CastroJulián Castro is ending his run as the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on a positive note, releasing a final memo to the American people that deems housing a “platform for opportunity.”The memo calls attention to some of HUD’s top housing-related accomplishments, including its efforts to stabilize the post-Great Recession market; help homeowners who lost their properties in Hurricane Sandy, floods, and other natural disasters; and give public housing residents access to high-speed internet through the ConnectHome program.“We stabilized a housing market in crisis and then,” Castro says, “through the Federal Housing Administration, stepped up lending to responsible borrowers while increasing capital reserves and lowering mortgage insurance premiums. We developed public-private partnerships to preserve affordable housing. We affirmed the Fair Housing Act’s basic principle of desegregated communities and protected housing opportunities for all. And conscious of the damage climate change is wreaking on our homes and infrastructure, we invested more than $18 billion in communities recovering from natural disasters and initiated a $1 billion competition for resilient housing and infrastructure projects, and unlocked access to Property Accessed Clean Energy financing so that the thousands of American’s that chose an FHA-backed mortgage each day can make energy efficiency improvements on their homes at no upfront cost.”HUD also worked with the Department of Justice and 49 state attorneys general to protect homeowners from mortgage fraud during the financial crisis. The result was a $25 billion agreement in 2012 with the country’s five largest lenders, providing relief to millions of homeowners across the country.It’s these types of acts, along with many others, that make HUD the “Department of Opportunity,” Castro says.“Everything we did in the last eight years was oriented to bring greater opportunity to the people we serve every day,” he said.President Obama’s administration also has many things to be proud of, Castro says.“Through the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP), the Hardest-Hit Fund, and the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP), the Obama Administration’s efforts stabilized the economy by providing a critical lifeline to more than 10 million distressed homeowners,” Castro said. “These efforts paid off—Americans built nearly $7 trillion in housing wealth since 2009. Today, home values in many housing markets are fully recovered, and more people are once again turning to homeownership to build equity for themselves and their families.”But despite the many things that have been accomplished over President Obama’s eight and Castro’s nearly three years in office, Castro says there is still work to be done.“Much has been accomplished during the Obama Administration, but new challenges are on the horizon, including a severely aging public housing stock and an affordable housing crisis in many areas of the country,” Castro said. “Just as HUD provided necessary reinforcement to the housing market during the latest economic crisis, this vital Department will be crucial to the continued improvement of the American economy and the security of millions of Americans in the years to come.”Castro has been the HUD Secretary since July 2014, and his tenure in that position is expected to end after President-elect Donald Trump is sworn in on January 20. If he is confirmed by the Senate, Dr. Ben Carson will be the next HUD Secretary. HUD Julián Castro Obama Administration 2017-01-05 Seth Welborncenter_img in Daily Dose, Data, Government, Headlines, News Sharelast_img read more