Studio says safety on Riverdale set of paramount importance following crash

first_imgVANCOUVER – Warner Bros. Television says the safety of the cast and crew of its Vancouver-based “Riverdale” set is of “paramount importance.”The studio is speaking out in the wake of a car crash involving star K.J. Apa, who escaped injury in a collision that occurred as he drove home after a 14-hour day.The incident prompted concerns from some industry observers about long hours in the film and TV business.But the studio says its productions adhere to guild-mandated standards. That includes a turnaround time of 12 hours from wrap to next day call time, and the offer of a taxi, driver or hotel room to anyone who feels tired or unsafe after work.The studio says Apa worked 14.2 hours Sept. 14, the day of the accident. And on the previous day he worked 2.5 hours, and the day before that he worked 7.7 hours.They also say the 20-year-old New Zealander was told about his labour rights.“K.J. has repeatedly been informed about making production aware if he is tired or feels unsafe, and if so, either a ride or hotel room will be provided for him,” the studio said in a statement.Apa plays lead character Archie Andrews on the show, a live action take on the Archie Comics.It is the second Vancouver production to have an accident in as many months. Rookie stuntwoman Joi Harris died in August after apparently losing control of a motorcycle in a stunt for “Deadpool 2.”last_img read more

Zhu Zhu Cries For Animals To Ban Chinas Cruel Cosmetics Animal Testing

first_imgFilm actress and former MTV China host, Zhu Zhu, (Cloud Atlas; The Man With the Iron Fists) has unveiled a striking new poster in support of Be Cruelty-Free China, the campaign by Humane Society International and Capital Animal Welfare Association to ban cruel animal testing for cosmetics such as lipstick and shampoo.Zhu Zhu Cries for AnimalsThe animal-loving film star, announced this week as a Be Cruelty-Free China Ambassador, joins international celebrities including Sir Paul McCartney and Leona Lewis, in speaking up for cosmetics with compassion on behalf of the global Be Cruelty-Free campaign.Zhu Zhu’s Be Cruelty-Free photo campaign launched in Beijing, features the actress crying whilst cradling a rabbit, one of the most commonly used animals in cosmetics testing. An estimated 300,000 rabbits, mice and other animals are used in cosmetics testing each year in China. They have chemicals dripped in their eyes, spread on their shaved skin or force fed to them in massive, lethal doses. No pain relief is given.Zhu Zhu said: “It breaks my heart to know that here in China, gentle animals such as rabbits are still suffering such pain just to test cosmetics. That’s why I’m proud to become a Be Cruelty-Free China Ambassador, to help spread the message of cosmetics with compassion. The Be Cruelty-Free campaign has already achieved so much around the world, with testing bans in Europe, Israel and India and countries such as the United States, Brazil and New Zealand all considering taking action thanks to Be Cruelty-Free campaigning. I want China to join them. Animals don’t need to die for our cosmetics industry.”The photo, along with a heart-felt personal video message from the star, will appear at selected sites at Beijing metro station in the coming months, as well as be promoted online through China’s burgeoning social media platforms such as Weibo. The campaign was shot on location in Los Angeles by top celebrity photographer Robert Sebree, with make-up artist Paige Padgett using strictly cruelty-free cosmetics on set. Rescued rabbit Blizzard stars alongside Zhu Zhu.Video: Film Star Zhu Zhu joins Be Cruelty-Free as China AmbassadorQin Xiaona, president of Capital Animal Welfare Association, a Be Cruelty-Free China partner, said: “Our powerful Be Cruelty-Free China poster shows Zhu Zhu as the face of cosmetics with compassion and we are honoured that she has agreed to be our campaign Ambassador. Cosmetics animal testing is not only cruel, it is also unreliable. These are old-fashioned tests of questionable relevance to people. Modern state-of-the-art science is far better able to assure consumer safety. So ending cosmetics cruelty is good for people as well as animals and we urge China to do so as soon as possible.”In China testing cosmetics on animals is still required by law. Progress towards the Be Cruelty-Free goal was made last year when the China Food and Drug Administration announced it will phase out some mandatory animal testing for domestically-produced cosmetics from June. Based in Beijing, HSI and CAWA’s team works with Chinese policymakers and regulators to advance the acceptance of non-animal tests and accelerate a move away from animal testing.last_img read more

Fuel theft poses first big battle for Mexican president

first_imgMEXICO CITY — Mexico’s new president has shut down some pipelines to stop fuel thieves who he says had established an illegal distribution network.The fight against thefts of $3 billion per year from government pipelines and fuel depots represents the first big domestic battle for Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who took office on Dec. 1.Lopez Obrador said Monday that some gangs had actually built warehouses over pipeline rights of way to drill illegal taps into the ducts.The pipeline shutdowns and a temporary switch to more distribution by tanker trucks has caused gasoline shortages in a handful of states.Despite the political costs of the shortages, Lopez Obrador said he will not fold, noting “let’s see who gets tired first, the fuel thieves or us.”The Associated Presslast_img read more

BC wraps up its arguments in Trans Mountain court case

VANCOUVER (660 NEWS) – The Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project is once again in the courtroom. The BC Government is looking to control the flow of diluted bitumen in the project, but several groups including the Alberta and Federal governments disagree with that assertion.Eugene Kung is an environmental lawyer. He claims the case will revolve around which jurisdiction these rules fall under.“It’s important to recognize that jurisdictions, as set out in the constitution, are important in terms of assigning responsibility for various areas.”He argued there is some grey area with those jurisdictions. He compares the BC government argument to how we deal with highways.“Federal standards for emissions and so on for cars, but the provinces can still decide on speed limits or license conditions.”The City of Burnaby says an environmental permitting system proposed by the BC government would help it prepare to respond to a disaster from the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.Michelle Bradley is representing the city and made the comment in the BC Court of Appeal, which is hearing a reference case that asks whether the province can create such a system.Bradley says Trans Mountain already relied extensively on Burnaby’s first responders in 2007, when a contractor struck the line and 224,000 litres of heavy oil spewed into a residential area.She told the court that environmental damage will be local, not national, so the governments closest to those communities should be empowered to enact legislation to protect them from harm.BC concluded its arguments before the Appeal Court as it hears a reference case filed by the province over proposed changes to its Environmental Management Act that would affect the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.A lawyer representing the province says the proposed changes won’t allow B-C to refuse to provide a permit to a pipeline operator without cause.The governments of Canada, Alberta, and Saskatchewan have not yet had an opportunity to deliver arguments in court, but they say Ottawa, not provinces, has jurisdiction over inter-provincial projects like Trans Mountain.Canada says in court documents that the proposed amendments must be struck down because they give the province a “veto” over such projects.With files from the Canadian Press read more

UN envoy expresses concern over renewed clashes in northern Lebanese city

According to media reports, a series of clashes between supporters and opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad broke out last week in the northern Lebanese city and continued over the weekend, killing 17 people and wounding more than 100.The UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Derek Plumbly, in a meeting with Mufti Malek Shaar, welcomed the restoration of calm in the country’s second largest city but added that a temporary halt of the violence is not enough and that a long-term security and economic solution is needed.“Mr. Plumbly encouraged all sides to respect and cooperate with State institutions, particularly the security authorities, who have a significant burden as they work to keep Lebanon safe from the impact of the crisis in neighbouring Syria,” UN spokesperson Martin Nesirky told reporters in New York.Mr. Plumbly also offered his sincere condolences for the recent loss of life. read more

At Security Council UN force commanders recount challenges of modern peacekeeping

Opening the Security Council’s meeting on protection of civilians, operational threats and performance, held earlier today at UN Headquarters in New York, Under-Secretary-General for UN Peacekeeping Operations Hervé Ladsous, introduced the force commanders of three UN operations – the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS); the Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA); and the UN Truce Supervision Organisation (UNTSO) – observing that each of them had a story of courage and determination to tell. At the same time, he said, the three UN military officials could also relate the growing challenges they and their peacekeepers were facing in the diverse environments across the globe to which they were deployed, particularly due to the unprecedented scale of difficulties they now faced in protecting civilians, observing the caveats imposed by troop-contributing countries, and dealing with asymmetric threats.Detailing the most pressing aspects of peacekeeping in South Sudan, where an intensifying crisis has forced over 2 million people into internal displacement and plunged an estimated 4.6 million people into severe food insecurity, UNMISS Force Commander, Lieutenant-General Yohannes Gebremeskel Tesfamariam, told Council Members that protection of civilians was not just about ensuring security but also guaranteeing the freedom of movement for people.“The ability to move and proactively protect civilians in their areas of origin, securing their traditional movement and enabling them to undertake their livelihoods, must be a focus of our efforts in implementing the protection of civilians mandate,” he explained.Throughout the African country, more than 140,000 people are currently sheltering at UNMISS bases where they seek safety and humanitarian relief from South Sudan’s two-year conflict.Lieutenant-General Tesfamariam warned, however, that the UN civilian protection sites have increasingly become targets in the fighting with a recent incident, dated between 19 and 21 May, seeing more than 20 artillery shells and stray bullets hit the UNMISS base in Melut, in the country’s northeast. This and other similar security threats had contributed to increasingly stretching the Mission’s operational abilities.“It is well understood that protection of civilians is the most resource consuming operation. It requires logistical, financial and human resources, resources that fit the mandate, expectations and realities on the ground,” he continued. “The limitations that we face in this respect, particularly the absence of critical enablers, such as close-air support, adequate logistics, intelligence, reconnaissance, and responsive CASEVAC/MEDEVAC capabilities, negatively impact our early warning.”The appeal for more wide-ranging and better equipment was echoed by Major General Michael Lollesgaard, the Force Commander for MINUSMA in Mali, where UN troops are currently operating in one of the more hazardous regions for peacekeeping. MINUSMA forces have frequently been targeted by armed groups operating throughout the vast country with recent attacks in late April resulting in numerous casualties.“We need to be fully capable of facing this environment in all aspects,” the Major General declared. “That means capability to face hostile armed groups hiding amongst the population and to face challenging climates, geography and infrastructure.”In order to do that, he said, UN peacekeepers must be properly trained prior to deployment; properly equipped; assisted with robust logistics; and furnished with “well-protected camps with good living conditions,” among other things.“I know this sounds like a lot,” he acknowledged, “but this is what we need if we want to be able to survive in an asymmetric environment.”The challenges facing peacekeepers stretch, however, beyond their immediate operational needs and also involve distinct political obstacles, added Major General Michael Finn, Chief of Staff at UNTSO – the first ever peacekeeping operation established by the UN – who highlighted the imposition of national caveats as a “significant restriction” on multinational operations around the world.Caveats, the Major General affirmed, remain a serious impediment to the command and performance of all UN missions and ultimately restrict a commanders’ ability to exercise command and control in theatres of operation, potentially compromising the ability of ‘blue helmets’ to effectuate their tasks.“I fully recognize the national interests that drive caveats, but I also see that caveats threaten to ‘drive a wedge’ between contributing nations, threatening as well peacekeeping and observer capabilities of the UN,” he noted.“Thus, it is a critical challenge to find ways to address the contentious issue of caveats and to maintain the integrity of peacekeeping missions into the future.” read more

Judge orders Bevin and Hampton to settle their issues on their own

Bevin’s lawyer says this a minor disagreement between friends but Hampton doesn’t agree.In the courtroom, Hampton’s attorney argued the governor and the lieutenant governor have separate offices and Hampton should have the right to hire and fire her own staff.Bevin’s lawyer says Hampton is trying to “alter the status quo.”Related Article: Judge cautions lawyers to watch language in abortion caseHe continued to point out the governor’s office has authority and used an example of when the governor approved a raise for one of Hampton’s staff members.The judge said both parties run as one slate and it was hard for him to find evidence they were separate.He continues to say both parties can fix this on their own and added if it stays out of the courtroom it could save the state time and taxpayer money.Hampton says her goal is to finish her term strong and she adds she will be supporting Governor Bevin in the fall. FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – A Franklin County judge tells the Governor and his lieutenant to settle their issues on their own.Last week, Lieutenant Governor Jenean Hampton sued Governor Matt Bevin after his administration fired two of her staffers without asking her. Hampton says she filed the lawsuit so she could get back two of her top staffers to help make the end of her term a success.- Advertisement – read more

Ruling is further evidence of NCAA tightening stranglehold on college athletes

If “Tattoogate” has truly resulted in any inking, it’s colored Ohio State’s student-athletes black and blue — by the NCAA. The NCAA’s ruling has put OSU’s hopes for a strong run next season into jeopardy. It not only forces five impact players to sit out the first five games of the season — including non-conference games at home against Colorado and on the road against Miami (Fla.) — but also has seemingly put the early nails in the coffin for  quarterback Terrelle Pryor’s Heisman campaign next season. In fact, the ruling suddenly has diminished Pryor’s prospects for even returning to the gridiron his senior season. Despite all that, the bigger issue involved here is the NCAA hammering its soulless, iron fist. In what’s now being called “Tattoogate,” five OSU football players — Pryor, Daniel “Boom” Herron, Mike Adams, DeVier Posey and Solomon Thomas — must sit the first five games of the 2010–11 football season and repay between $1,000 and $2,500 to charity. All because they sold their personal belongings and traded autographs for tattoos. None of these players was taking payouts from agents, receiving free Hummers or partying on private yachts with rappers. Instead, Pryor sold his things to help out his mother, Pryor’s high school coach Ray Reitz told ESPN. The reality of life is that sometimes people need to sell their things to get by, even if they’re cherished. We don’t know what sentimental value these players placed on the rings, awards and jerseys they sold, but if these players truly were in financial need, is it really appropriate for the NCAA to punish them so harshly? Few people actually want to sell their wedding ring, but sometimes it’s necessary to help make ends meet. Buckeye fans might feel a little stung that Pryor sold a Big Ten championship ring and his Gold Pants, but if Pryor truly was trying to help out his family, can we really be that upset with him? And is trading a tattoo for an autograph really so bad? It’s not like these players were trading tattoos for an all-expense-paid vacation to a party at the Playboy Mansion. Erik Kuselias of ESPN’s “Mike & Mike in the Morning” makes a good point: These athletes can receive hundreds of dollars in free merchandise for playing in the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl, but trading an autograph for a tattoo is worthy of a five-game suspension? Great logic, NCAA. Great logic. Let’s not forget the NCAA’s inconsistency, either. Earlier this year, the NCAA ruled that Auburn quarterback Cam Newton was eligible to play, despite reports that his father was shopping him around to universities for six-figure payouts. However, according to the NCAA, an investigation is still ongoing. The NCAA also took several years to reach a verdict in the Reggie Bush case at USC, where Bush received $300,000 in illegal benefits. Bush played at USC from 2003-05, and it wasn’t until June 2010 that the NCAA placed the program on four years probation, forced them to vacate victories and stripped them of scholarships. Being angry with these players for making a mistake might not be the best way to direct our aggression. Instead, we should be more upset with the NCAA for its ridiculous stranglehold on the lives of student-athletes. We should also push the OSU athletic department to educate student-athletes more thoroughly on rules violations. Athletic director Gene Smith even admitted Thursday in a statement that OSU didn’t do a sufficient job educating its student-athletes about these types of violations. And remember that report in The Lantern saying that OSU has an allocation of about $500,000 set aside to help student-athletes in financial need? Perhaps OSU should do a better job of letting these players know they aren’t going to be totally hung out to dry if their wallets are running on empty. It’s not known for sure what the intentions of the players were yet or what the money was spent on, but if the players truly had only good intentions, the NCAA’s ruling is just another case of the NCAA exploiting its embarrassing and illogical stranglehold on each and every move student-athletes make. read more

It is spreading across Ireland but what exactly is suspended coffee

first_imgONE OF THE very, very few upsides about the recession has been the unexpected wave of good deeds spurred by people’s lack of money.Random acts of kindness, crowdfunding, and paying it forward have all surged in the past five years – on the internet, as well as (hopefully)  in real life – giving people a cheap way to make a small difference in the lives of other people.One of these new good deeds is suspended coffee – the slightly clunky name for something which began in Italy, grew in popularity throughout 2011, and which spread to Ireland earlier this year.The idea is simple: when buying a coffee at a participating café, you pay for another coffee or tea  which is given to someone who can’t afford one if they come in and ask for it. So far 26 shops – all local independent cafés – have signed up to take part across the country, mainly thanks to the work of one person.Aoife Ryan, a teacher at a school for children with autism, came up with the idea of introducing suspended coffee to Ireland earlier this year after she saw people talking about it on Twitter.She started a Facebook page about it the very next morning, and in just one month has already gained more than 2,000 likes, 450 followers on Twitter, and an ever-growing number of cafés which are taking part.“I saw the idea on my Twitter feed and immediately I thought ‘this is great, this is something that Irish people would be interested in doing,’” she says. “When out in the city and I see people on the streets or that are homeless I prefer to buy them food or a drink rather than give money, so the suspended coffee really appealed to me.”Aoife says it hasn’t been hard to get coffee shops on board, with the 26 that have so far signed up spread across 13 counties. What I have done is found coffee shops on Google, Facebook and Twitter and sent them messages and emails, telling them about the concept and asking them if it is something that they would be interested in getting on board with. Two of the shops saw the Facebook page or Twitter account, and sent me a message enquiring about it and expressing an interest to be involved.A friend of Aoife’s designed a poster which the cafés print out and display in their window to let customers and people who may be looking for the hot drink know that they’re taking part in the scheme.Is it working?But while it is catching on in shops and for well-meaning people who can afford to buy that extra coffee, are people actually availing of the free coffees?Aoife says that while lots of suspended coffees have been bought in coffee shops so far, only a few have so far been claimed by people who can’t afford them. Word is spreading though. ” I have emailed Focus Ireland, Simon, the Peter McVerry Trust, St Vincent De Paul, Trust, DePaul and hostels around the country asking them to spread the word to people they are meeting,” she says. “The whole point is for those people to benefit from it”.It is smaller shops which have been the most enthusiastic about the idea, while the big chains have been slower to take it on board. Starbucks Ireland didn’t respond when someone brought it up on their Facebook page at the end of March. But Aoife makes the point that it’s not all about the big stores. “I have emailed all the big chains,” she says.Two of them have mailed me back saying the concept has gone to the operational teams for discussions. Time will tell… But it goes to show that sometimes ideas can take off without having the big guys on board.Given the seemingly never-ending economic climate, asking people to spend money – even if it’s just for an extra cup of coffee – can be a tough sell. But Aoife says there’s still the appetite to help people who need it.“Some people I have spoken to about the idea would be happier to buy a suspended coffee than give money in other ways,” she says.“Irish people in general are a generous lot and are very good when it comes to charity,” she says, pointing out that many of the shops are charging €2 for the suspended coffee.“I honestly am delighted with all the shops that are on board. On the other hand there is still loads of room for more of them to get involved”.You can find out more about Suspended Coffee Ireland on Facebook and Twitter. Read: How parents are trying to raise €2 million on the internet to build a school in Clare >Read: You might help crowdfund an album – but what about some scientific research? >last_img read more

Griffin Turns Nano to Watch

first_imgHere’s an accessory so clever, you’ll want to run out and buy an iPod Nano, if you don’t have one already. Griffin, the gadget powerhouse, unveiled Slap for iPod Nano (6th generation) today, an 80s twist on modern technology. This wearable case aims to make the wristwatch popular again by turning the Nano in a functional, fun, fashionable timepiece.The Slap Case crosses a wristwatch and a silicone skin. It’s flexible, spring-steel band is wrapped in soft silicon. Snap the Slap open, then snap the Slap shut across your wrist. It self-adjusts to the right size. The Nano’s thick silicone guards against bumps and jolts. It protects the dock connector and volume controls, but leaves the headphone port open so you can plug in and listen. It will be available soon for $24.99.last_img read more

Hope fades for philippine quake victims

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Thousands of soldiers in the quake-hit Philippines are scouring villages buried under landslides, but authorities say hopes of finding dozens of missing people alive are dim. Three days after a 6.7 magnitude quake flattened homes, destroyed bridges and triggered deadly landslides in the central island of Negros, rescuers had yet to find anyone alive among at least 92 people reported missing. “Rescue teams have so far not seen or heard any signs of life underneath,” Ernesto Reyes, mayor of the city of Guihulngan on Negros island where 29 people were believed buried by a landslide, told AFP yesterday. At least 48 people were confirmed to have died in Negros, with another 92 missing, regional military commander Colonel Francisco Patrimonio said. In Manila, the national government’s disaster office said the death toll was 22, with 71 missing, but acknowledged it had not yet been able to verify reports from authorities in Negros.last_img read more

Polynésie la place Chirac débaptisée en mémoire des essais nucléaires

first_imgPolynésie : la place Chirac débaptisée en mémoire des essais nucléairesLa place Jacques Chirac située à Papeete, en Polynésie française, a été débaptisée et renommée “place du 2 juillet 1966” en mémoire du premier essai nucléaire de Moruroa.Entre 1966 et 1996, la Polynésie française a été le terrain de nombreux essais nucléaires. Au total, 46 essais aériens ont eu lieu avant d’être succédés par des tirs souterrains effectués dans l’atoll de Moruroa et achevés en janvier 1996. À lire aussiPolynésie : les essais nucléaires auraient augmenté les risques de cancer de la thyroïdeEn mémoire de ces évènements, le Président de la Polynésie, l’indépendantiste Oscar Temaru, a présidé l’inauguration de la nouvelle “place du 2 juillet 1966″, ex place Jacques Chirac qui a été débaptisée. M. Temaru en a également profité pour commémorer les 45 ans du premier tir baptisé Aldebaran, aux côtés de militants anti-nucléaires, et en présence du député-maire (UMP) de Papeete, Michel Buillard.”On doit rappeler à nos enfants ce qui s’est passé dans ce pays, parce que les conséquences, nous en souffrons encore, pour ce qui est de la santé, l’environnement et le bouleversement de la société”, a déclaré à la presse locale Roland Oldham, président de Moruroa E Tatou, la principale association de vétérans des sites d’expérimentations nucléaires. Aujourd’hui, cette association est toujours en conflit avec le ministère de la Défense, la loi Morin qui concerne la reconnaissance et l’indemnisation des victimes des essais nucléaires n’ayant pas répondu à ses attentes.Le 5 juillet 2011 à 13:31 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Davies believes HudsonOdoi trying to emulate Sancho

first_imgDerby County defender believes Chelsea youngster Callum Hudson-Odoi is trying to follow in the footsteps of Jadon Sancho.The 18-year-old winger has been a subject of three rejected bids from Bayern Munich this transfer window, as the Bundesliga giants are keen to lure him away from Chelsea.Hudson-Odoi is understood to be keen on a move to Germany in search more first-team football after only featuring three times in the Premier League for the Blues.Davies believes watching Sancho, who left Manchester City for Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2017, flourish due to more first-team action has made Hudson-Odoi more unsettled at Stamford Bridge.Jadon Sancho, Borussia DortmundCrouch: Liverpool could beat Man United to Jadon Sancho Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Peter Crouch wouldn’t be surprised to see Jadon Sancho end up at Liverpool one day instead of his long-term pursuers Manchester United.The former Hull City defender said, according to Sky Sports:“It’s whether Chelsea will offer him a big deal and will say ‘we want you to be involved in games’ like he has been recently, or whether he decides he wants to leave and join Bayern Munich and try to do what Jadon Sancho did, which is leave a British club and now find himself in the England squad and playing at the top of the Bundesliga.”last_img read more

Power restored after wind causes outage in Camas

first_imgStrong winds whipped through the region on Wednesday, causing at least two power outages and adding to already dangerous fire conditions.The largest outage left more than 1,000 Camas-area residents in the dark for about an hour Wednesday afternoon. The incident was caused when wind pushed trees into power lines, said Clark Public Utilities spokeswoman Erica Erland.The utility first reported the outage just after 2 p.m., It affected a total of 1,040 customers. Crews restored power to about half of those by 3 p.m., and the rest were taken care of just after 4 p.m., Erland said.Southwest Washington saw blustery conditions throughout the day Wednesday. At Vancouver’s Pearson Field, wind gusts often topped 30 mph, according to measurements reported by the National Weather Service in Portland. Despite the conditions, Clark Public Utilities reported only one other outage that briefly affected 442 customers in north Clark County earlier in the day, Erland said.Forecasters expect windy conditions to continue through tonight and into Thursday, according to the weather service, with gusts again reaching 30 mph.last_img read more

Panasonic Invents Multilingual Megaphone Translator

first_img Google Translate Adds More Languages to Wikipedia Article EditingResearchers Solve Decades-Old Puzzle of Early Life Stages Stay on target Sometimes it’s easy to forget that we really are living in the future. Star Trek communicators are basically dumbed down smartphones; we now have laser beams that sanitize skin for surgery, and… of course, we’ve got self-driving cars (not as cool as the flying kind, but way safer for sure). But even with all that, now and then, something comes along that just floors me.Take this megaphone, for example. It’s basically a universal translator. You speak into the normal speaking end, tap some buttons, and it automagically translates what you said into English, Chinese, or Korean. And it does this in a matter of seconds. Not perfect, by any means, but it’s a huge step towards the future.Panasonic developed the device dubbed “The Megahonyaku,” a portmanteau that plays on the Japanese words for “megaphone” and translation. It comes with 300 or so phrases that it can understand, and, if you’d prefer not to speak, you can select which command you’d like using a touchscreen. Some of the phrases include “Please form a single line,” and “the train has been delayed,” but users can add more themselves or download new ones.Foreigners have been trekking to Japan either for vacation or business in record numbers recently. That’s made it more difficult for the relatively monolingual island nation to communicate effectively with visitors. The hope is that this will help Japanese workers speak to and advise tourists and professionals about important information. It’s also being considered for use during emergencies and can translate reasonably well regardless of background noise.The Megahonyaku will cost about $200 a month via a subscription service with Panasonic — so not exactly affordable for most of us. But the company is targeting the device at businesses that staff high-traffic areas like airports and tourist areas. The device should go on sale later this year.last_img read more

DMC mulls alternative water supply system

first_imgKolkata: The Durgapur Municipal Corporation (DMC) is developing infrastructure for an alternative water distribution system for both domestic and industrial use. The DMC is installing as many as 36 deep tubewells at places where there are overhead reservoirs which will draw water from the ground and store it in the reservoir.”Till date, Damodar river has been the only source of water for the residents of Durgapur. Water from the Damodar river was treated and then supplied through pipeline for both domestic and industrial use. The idea is to be prepared for an alternative if there is any calamity that may disrupt the sully system in the township,” Dilip Kumar Agasty, Mayor of DMC said. The project will entail a cost of Rs 12 crore and the DMC hopes to complete it before the onset of the monsoon season. “The tender process has already been completed and work will start soon,” Agasty said. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe DMC is also taking up a major project ‘Storm Water Drainage Project’ to prevent waterlogging. It may be mentioned that during last monsoon the underground sewerage system had collapsed completely during the monsoon. In the month of October 2017, there was heavy rain that inundated several areas under the DMC including Tamla, Main Gate, Waria, Mana and Khatpukur. About 2,500 households were affected. The DMC does not want similar situations. “We have done a survey with the assistance of engineers from Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA). Our plan is to channelise the rain water through high drain to the small rivers like Tamla and Kumur that flows through the township area. The depth of the high drains also needs to be enhanced for which massive desiltation work needs to be undertaken,” the Mayor said.The work for preparing the DPR has already been initiated. Agasty met state Urban Development & Municipal Affairs minister Firhad Hakim in his chamber at Writers’ Building recently and the latter had assured that funds will not be a problem for projects that are meant to benefit people.last_img read more

Big street protest will call for LGBTI book ban to be changed

first_imgGAYSTARNEWS- Earlier this week it was revealed Home Affairs Bureau had caved into pressure from a lobby group to remove ten titles from its shelves. It complained the ‘Book Collection of the Children’s Libraries that Promote Homosexuality’ shouldn’t be publicly accessible. The books’ topics ranged from rainbow families to gender identity.Home Affairs agreed to store the books on a ‘closed shelf’ where people could only access them after they directly asked library staff. But it refused to remove the books entirely from libraries because the books’ topics were ‘neutral’ and public had a right to information.For the LGBTI community however, that is not good enough.A coalition of organizations has come together to protest the decision. They have called the coalition, United Front for Open Libraries. ‘The practices of the Home Affairs Bureau and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department are puzzling and contradictory. Since the books are “neutral”, why do they still need to be kept in closed stack?’ United Front said in a statement.United Front is planning a series of actions to reverse the decision including a protest.The group and its supporters plan to protest outside the Hong Kong Central Library at 3pm on 24 June. There they will submit petition letters and written statements to the officers concerned.#FreeMyLibraryAfter the news broke of the library’s decision, a social media campaign to overturn it has started to gain momentum.The #FreeMyLibrary has garnered support from LGBTI activists around the world.Solidarity for Hong Kong Books for ALL our children #FreeMyLibrary— Jo Hirst (@thegenderfairy1) June 22, 2018 Hong Kong’s LGBTI community and its allies will take to the streets this Sunday to protest the removal of LGBTI-themed children’s books from public libraries. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… eTN Chatroom for Readers (join us) A protest is planned outside Hong Kong City Library on 24 June, 2018. | Photo: Got a news tip? Want to share your story? Email us . Pressure mounts on Hong Kong libraries to put LGBTI books back on shelvesHong Kong leader accused of snubbing LGBTI issues in live Q&APeople in Iowa are trying to ban books with LGBTI content from librariesRead the full article on Gaystarnews:  : read more

Survey Consumers Hopeful About Housing in 2015

first_imgSurvey: Consumers Hopeful About Housing in 2015 The level of optimism for the housing market in the United States is at its highest point as it has been at any point during the recovery, according to a recent survey conducted by Trulia.The majority of American adults surveyed for Q4 said they expect all five real estate activities—selling a home, buying a home, getting a mortgage to buy a home, getting a mortgage to refinance a home, and renting a home—to be better in 2015 than they were in 2014.According to Trulia, 36 percent of respondents said 2015 would be much better or a little better for selling a home, compared to 16 percent who said they believe the coming year will be much or a little worse. The difference of 20 percentage points between the two was the highest for any of the five categories; the percentage of respondents who answered much or a little better was higher than the percentage of those who said much or a little worse in all five categories.Of those surveyed, 74 percent said that homeownership was part of the American Dream, tying its post-recession high set in Q4 2013 and slightly higher than the percentage who felt the same way in 2012, 2011, and 2010, according to Trulia.Among younger adults, the percentage of those who say homeownership is part of achieving the American dream is at an all-time post-recession high, according to Trulia. Of the adults from ages 18 to 34 who were surveyed, 78 percent answered yes to the question of homeownership and the American dream. The previous high was 73 percent, set in Q4 2013, and the lowest was 65 percent set in Q3 2011. Also, 93 percent of young renters said they hope to buy a home someday, according to Trulia.Trulia reported that while optimism is high toward the housing market, barriers remain to homeownership. While the biggest barrier to homeownership is still saving for a down payment, affordability has become a bigger concern in the last year—32 percent of respondents said increasing home prices were the biggest barrier to owning a home, compared to just 22 percent from the same period a year ago. Poor credit and qualifying for a mortgage were also cited by respondents as obstacles to homeownership. Confidence Trulia 2014-12-03 Seth Welborn in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Newscenter_img December 3, 2014 437 Views Sharelast_img read more

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