POLICE LOG for December 13 Train Blocks Middlesex Ave Syringe Found Homeowner

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Here are highlights from the Wilmington Police Log for Thursday, December 13, 2018:A 2-vehicle crash took place on Ballardvale Street. Air bags deployed. Both vehicles towed. (8:12am)A Baldwin Road caller reported a horizontal splint in a tree in a neighbor’s yard. He was unsure if tree was on town property or neighbor’s property. Caller is concerned wind will knock tree down. DPW notified. Tree Department will check tree. (11:17am)Fire Department reported train is blocking Route 62 at North Wilmington Station. (11:19am)A resident found a syringe outside of Maple Road house on the sidewalk. Police brought the syringe back to station for disposal. (2:26pm)Fire Department responded to a brush fire on Main Street. (7:07pm)Police came across a party picking through items left outside of Main Street Consignment & Thrift and sent them on their way. (7:37pm)(DISCLAIMER: This information is public information.  An arrest does not constitute a conviction.  Any arrested person is innocent until proven guilty.)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.Thank You To Our Sponsor:Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedPOLICE LOG for August 4: Lowell Man Arrested On Warrant; Bad Crash In Front Of Rocco’s; Syringe FoundIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for July 6: Trailer Fire On Highway; Car vs. Rock Wall; Needle Found In YardIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for August 5: Driver Throws Beer Bottles; Syringe Found; Woburn Man Issued Summons; Texting While DrivingIn “Police Log”last_img read more

Christmas celebrated

first_imgChristmas celebratedThe Christian community celebrated Christmas Day in the country as elsewhere across the world on Monday, commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ, reports UNB.Christmas, the biggest religious festival of the Christian community, is the celebration of rebirth, new beginning, forgiveness and peace, and renewing relationship with God and human beings.Decoration of Christmas trees with colourful lights, special prayers and distribution of gifts among children and exchange of pleasantries are the main features of the day’s festivities.Christmas carols and hymns were sung before and after the prayer sessions at the churches.President Abdul Hamid exchanged greetings with members of the Christian community at Bangabhaban on the occasion.At that time, the president called upon all to play an effective role from their respective positions in upholding the country’s glorious tradition of communal harmony and brightening it further.Cardinal of Bangladesh Patrick D’ Rozario, ambassadors and representatives from different foreign missions, distinguished persons of the Christian community, religious leaders and professionals joined the reception.A group of singers performed the Christmas carol at the reception.Later, president Hamid cut a Christmas cake with members of the Christian community.Bangladesh Television and Bangladesh Betar and different private TV channels and radio stations aired special programmes highlighting the significance of the day.last_img read more

Quader insists constitution stipulates polltime govt formula

first_imgAwami League general secretary Obaidul Quader addresses a programme of distributing warm cloths among the destitute at party`s headquarters at Bangabandhu Avenue in the capital. Photo: Focus BanglaIn response to BNP’s allegation that the prime minister’s remark regarding constitutional provision for a poll-time government is misleading, ruling Bangladesh Awami League (AL) general secretary Obaidul Quader on Monday insisted that the constitution stipulates the formula of the election-time government.“Everything is in the constitution. BNP itself is in confusion over the election-time government,” Quader told a programme in front of the party’s headquarters at Bangabandhu Avenue in the capital.The party organised the programme to distribute warm clothes among the destitute.The ruling party general secretary emphatically said his party would not go beyond constitutional provision with regard to the formation of the election-time government.“I’m clearly stating that we’ll not be able to go beyond the constitution.”The AL leader alleged that his party’s rival Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) is not giving any “clear position on the next general elections”.“BNP hasn’t given any framework of election-time government as yet. It can give an outline as to what it wants. AL had expected that BNP will give at least a framework of poll-time government.”Also the road transport and bridges minister, Quader said BNP is time and again referring to the controversial 5 January 2014 elections.“There is nothing wrong with democracy here. It’s rather BNP’s political mistake. And that’s why, the issue of uncontested election of MPs comes.”The AL leader claimed that the BNP is in a deep despair.“No matter whatever the prime minister says, BNP’s stand is like a proverb: Faults are thick where love is thin [you find everything wrong with a person whom you do not like].”In a televised address to the nation marking the completion of her government’s four years in office after the controversial 5 January 2014 national elections, AL president and PM Sheikh Hasina on 12 January said an election-time government would be formed as per the constitution which would provide “all-out cooperation” to the election commission to conduct the election.The next day, the BNP said Hasina’s remark about the election-time government is misleading as there is no provision in the current constitution to form such an administration.last_img

Scientists achieve perfect efficiency for watersplitting halfreaction

first_imgUnder visible light illumination, the nanoscale photocatalysts perform the water-splitting reduction half-reaction with 100% efficiency. Credit: Lilac Amirav, Technion-Israel Institue of Technology The researchers, Philip Kalisman, Yifat Nakibli, and Lilac Amirav at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, Israel, have published a paper on the perfect efficiency for the water reduction half-reaction in a recent issue of Nano Letters.”I strongly believe that the search for clean and renewable energy sources is crucial,” Amirav told Phys.org. “With the looming energy crisis on one hand, and environmental aspects, mainly global warming, on the other, I think this is our duty to try and amend the problem for the next generation. “Our work shows that it is possible to obtain a perfect 100% photon-to-hydrogen production efficiency, under visible light illumination, for the photocatalytic water splitting reduction half-reaction. These results shatter the previous benchmarks for all systems, and leave little to no room for improvement for this particular half-reaction. With a stable system and a turnover frequency of 360,000 moles of hydrogen per hour per mole of catalyst, the potential here is real.”When an H2O molecule splits apart, the three atoms don’t simply separate from each other. The full reaction requires two H2O molecules to begin with, and then proceeds by two separate half-reactions. In the oxidation half-reaction, four individual hydrogen atoms are produced along with an O2 molecule (which is discarded). In the reduction half-reaction, the four hydrogen atoms are paired up into two H2 molecules by adding electrons, which produces the useful form of hydrogen: H2 gas. (Left) Transmission electron microscope images of the nanorod photocatalysts with (a) one and (b) two platinum tips. (Right) A comparison of the efficiencies shows the advantage of using a single platinum tip. Credit: Kalisman, et al. ©2016 American Chemical Society Journal information: Nano Letters (Phys.org)—Splitting water is a two-step process, and in a new study, researchers have performed one of these steps (reduction) with 100% efficiency. The results shatter the previous record of 60% for hydrogen production with visible light, and emphasize that future research should focus on the other step (oxidation) in order to realize practical overall water splitting. The main application of splitting water into its components of oxygen and hydrogen is that the hydrogen can then be used to deliver energy to fuel cells for powering vehicles and electronic devices. Explore further In the new study, the researchers showed that the reduction half-reaction can be achieved with perfect efficiency on specially designed 50-nm-long nanorods placed in a water-based solution under visible light illumination. The light supplies the energy required to drive the reaction forward, with the nanorods acting as photocatalysts by absorbing the photons and in turn releasing electrons needed for the reaction. Citation: Scientists achieve perfect efficiency for water-splitting half-reaction (2016, February 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-02-scientists-efficiency-water-splitting-half-reaction.html Clean energy from water © 2016 Phys.org The 100% efficiency refers to the photon-to-hydrogen conversion efficiency, and it means that virtually all of the photons that reach the photocatalyst generate an electron, and every two electrons produce one H2 molecule. At 100% yield, the half-reaction produces about 100 H2 molecules per second (or one every 10 milliseconds) on each nanorod, and a typical sample contains about 600 trillion nanorods.One of the keys to achieving the perfect efficiency was identifying the bottleneck of the process, which was the need to quickly separate the electrons and holes (the vacant places in the semiconductor left after the electrons leave), and remove the holes from the photocatalyst. To improve the charge separation, the researchers redesigned the nanorods to have just one platinum catalyst instead of two. The researchers found that the efficiency increased from 58.5% with two platinum catalysts to 100% with only one.Going forward, the researchers plan to further improve the system. The current demonstration requires a very high pH, but such strong basic conditions are not always ideal in practice. Another concern is that the cadmium sulfide (CdS) used in the nanorod becomes corroded under prolonged light exposure in pure water. The researchers are already addressing these challenges with the goal to realize practical solar-to-fuel technology in the future.”We hope to implement our design rules, experience and accumulated insights for the construction of a system capable of overall water splitting and genuine solar-to-fuel energy conversion,” Amirav said. “The photocatalytic hydrogen generation presented here is not yet genuine solar-to-fuel energy conversion, as hole scavengers are still required. CdS is unfortunately not suitable for overall water splitting since prolonged irradiation of its suspensions leads to photocorrosion. We have recently demonstrated some breakthrough on this direction as well. The addition of a second co-catalyst, such as IrO2 or Ru, which can scavenge the holes from the semiconductor and mediate their transfer to water, affords CdS-based structures the desired photochemical stability. I believe this is an important milestone.” More information: Philip Kalisman, et al. “Perfect Photon-to-Hydrogen Conversion Efficiency.” Nano Letters. DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.5b04813 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

A tribute to the master

first_imgRashmi Khanna took the Capital stage to celebrate the 154th birth anniversary of Rabindra Nath Tagore on May 10 at Kalyani Kala Mandir. The evening witnessed the rendition of Shyam Path, songs from Bhanusingh’s Padawaali, amalgamated with dance and other music. Sumana Banerjee accompanied Khanna on vocals. Rashmi Khanna was accompanied by two of her senior disciples, Asses Chadha and Abhishree Joshi.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Bhanusimha Thakurer Padabali is a collection of Vaishnava lyrics composed in Brajabuli by Rabindranath Tagore. Published in 1884, Tagore wrote them under the pseudonym Bhanusingh at age sixteen. The anthology consisting of 22 songs, dedicated to Kadambari Tagore, his sister in law, chronicles the romance between Radha and Krishna. Tagore seeks connection with divinity through appeal to nature and the emotional interplay of human drama. The poems primarily speak of the eternal love between Radha and Krishna, a love like no other, a bond that connected the two souls and brought them together for all eternity. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixA beautiful collaboration between Rashmi Khanna and Sumana Banerjee, the programme was conceptualised and choreographed by Rashmi Khanna, the music and vocals were rendered by Sumana Banerjee. The show comprised six compositions from Tagore’s collection including songs like Aaju Sakhi, Bhara Baadar and Sajani sajani, potraying a range of emotions and moods.last_img read more

Give natural boost to immune system

first_imgThe rainy season may affect the immune system, so it is important to keep yourself hydrated and eat lots of green vegetables, says an expert.Here are a few tips:* Go green: Asparagus, cucumber, broccoli, leafy vegetables, zucchini and green vegetables are ideal. They have enough liquid content to keep the body hydrated and enough protein to provide energy. They keep you relaxed without causing any digestive irritations. * Avoid cold water: What that ice cold water does is effectively douse the digestive fires. This will cause digestive problems and a feeling of lack of energy. Water at room temperature assimilates into your body faster and rehydrates you quickly. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’* Cold-pressed juices: You might have heard about the term ‘cold-pressed juices’ being thrown around these days in discussions on health and fitness. It is actually an alternate process of juicing fruits wherein they are mashed at first and then external pressure is applied to extract the juice. In this way, the enzymes inside the fruit remain intact. They are also great in alkalising the acid build up in the body to keep the pH level neutral. Some fruits have nutrients that naturally help the immunity system. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThere are certain options for juice flavours that are ideal for monsoon season. Here’s a list of some:* Guava: A power-packed punch of Vitamin C, this fruit along with lemon and pineapple refreshes the system significantly. Guavas are also very high in anti-oxidants.* Mango: It helps to fight heat strokes, lowers cholesterol and is also a great alkalising agent. Undeniably, however, is the refreshing, delicious taste of this fruit that makes it a perfect drink. * Pomegranate: It helps to enhance the blood flow and detoxify the body of impurities. Another great source of Vitamin C. It is extremely hydrating and its juice delivers essential micro-nutrients and photo chemical to the skin.last_img read more

State govt mulls proposal to rebuild Vivekananda flyover

first_imgKolkata: The state Urban Development and Municipal Affairs department is considering the proposal to reconstruct the Vivekananda flyover, after the Public Works Department (PWD) tried to shift the responsibility in this regard.Firhad Hakim, the minister in charge of the department, said on Tuesday that they will conduct an examination regarding the structure after getting the permission from the Chief Secretary. The departmental secretary will urge the Chief Secretary in this regard. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe department will consider whether the top portions of the collapsed flyover will be removed or the entire structure will be rebuilt. “We have held a meeting with our expert committee. After the collapse of the flyover the Chief Secretary had assigned PWD to take care of the flyover. But nothing was done in the past three years. The PWD is now saying that Kolkata Metropalitan Development Authorities (KMDA) will maintain the flyover. We have asked them to remove unlocked girders. Our department will do a structural assessment to find out if the flyover can be rebuilt only by removing the top portion of the damaged parts. We will seek permission from the Chief Secretary in this connection,” Hakim said. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateHe added: “PWD has shifted the responsibility onto us. The decision has been pending for a long time. If the Chief Secretary permits us, we will conduct a study and try to float a tender. We will examine if the upper portions of the flyover should be brought down, keeping the pillars intact, or if a completely new structure will be set up.” The Vivekananda flyover, which connected Girish Park to Burrabazar, had collapsed on April 2016, claiming 28 lives. The state government had formed an inquiry committee comprising former faculty members of Kharagpur IIT, to probe the collapse of the 2.2 km long flyover. Meanwhile, the minister also said that two new flyovers will be constructed. One of them will connect Maa flyover with Ballygunj Phari, while the other will be set up between Brace Bridge and Garden Reach flyover. The works will be started after the projects get necessary approval.last_img read more

Bahia Principe properties streamline into four categories

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Wednesday, December 13, 2017 Share Posted by Travelweek Group center_img Bahia Principe properties streamline into four categories MIAMI — Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts has rejigged its 24-hotel portfolio, reclassifying properties into four categories and segments in an effort to simplify the booking process.The four hotel categories include: Luxury Bahia Principe, featuring the brand’s most luxurious hotels; Grand Bahia Principe, comprising five-star hotels; Sunlight Bahia Principe, for all Spain-based properties; and Fantasia Bahia Principe, a family-friendly concept that offers thematic hotels, inspired by the success of the brand’s newest property in Punta Cana.The brand will debut Fantasia Bahia Principe Tenerife, its second Fantasia property, in November 2018 in Spain.“The Fantasia Bahia Principe hotels will deliver the highest standards in quality and service, but, above all, will guarantee a thematic experience in which everyone can enjoy our first-class amenities and exciting activities, regardless of age,” said Isabel Pinero, Vice-President of Marketing & Communications for Grupo Piñero, the parent company of Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts.In addition to the new categories, hotels will also be segmented by experience: Treasure, hotels in off-the-beaten path locations; Escape, adults-only properties; and Family & Friends, for travellers with varying age groups and vacation preferences.More news:  CIE Tours launches first-ever River Cruise CollectionHere is a list of Bahia properties under their new categories:LUXURY BAHIA PRINCIPELuxury Bahia Principe Cayo Levantado (Dominican Republic)Luxury Bahia Principe Samaná (Dominican Republic)Luxury Bahia Principe Fantasia (Dominican Republic) – to be renamed Fantasia Bahia Principe Punta Cana starting November 2018Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue (Dominican Republic)Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Green (Dominican Republic)Luxury Bahia Principe Bougaville (Dominican Republic)Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda (Dominican Republic)Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay (Jamaica)Luxury Bahia Principe Akumal (Mexico)Luxury Bahia Principe Slan Ka’an (Mexico)GRAND BAHIA PRINCIPEGrand Bahia Principe Cayacoa (Dominican Republic)Grand Bahia Principe El Portillo (Dominican Republic)Grand Bahia Principe Punta Cana (Dominican Republic)Grand Bahia Principe La Romana (Dominican Republic)Grand Bahia Principe Turquesa (Dominican Republic)Grand Bahia Principe Bávaro (Dominican Republic)Grand Bahia Principe San Juan (Dominican Republic)Grand Bahia Principe Coba (Mexico)Grand Bahia Principe Tulum (Mexico)Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica (Jamaica)More news:  War of words between Transat, Group Mach ramps upSUNLIGHT BAHIA PRINCIPESunlight Bahia Principe Costa Adeje (Spain)Sunlight Bahia Principe Tenerife (Spain)Sunlight Bahia Principe San Felipe (Spain)Sunlight Bahia Principe Coral Playa (Spain)FANTASIA BAHIA PRINCIPEFantasia Bahia Principe Tenerife (Spain) – opening November 2018 Tags: Bahia Principe Hotels & Resortslast_img read more

Tom Fussell BBC Worldwide has hired former Shine C

first_imgTom FussellBBC Worldwide has hired former Shine CFO Tom Fussell as its new finance chief.He replaces Andrew Bott, whose departure for FremantleMedia was announced late last year, with Suzanne Burrows then covering his role on an interim basis.Fussell takes the CFO role at Worldwide, the commercial arm of UK pubcaster the BBC, from May 3. He has previously worked at the BBC in various finance roles.He was at Shine from 2013 to 2015, running its financial operations across 11 countries. He left the company after its merger with Endemol, creating Shine Endemol.Prior to Shine, Fussell was at publishing groups Harper Collins and Random House.BBC Worldwide chief Tim Davie said: “I am delighted to welcome Tom back to the BBC – it will be great to have him on the BBC Worldwide team.  He brings the ideal mix of top quality functional experience and superb sector knowledge.”Tom Fussell said: “This really is an ideal role for me – drawing on my commercial sector experience, while returning to an organisation I know and love.  BBC Worldwide has a clear strategy and an important purpose; and I look forward to helping it advance both of these.”last_img read more

Doug Casey has said over and over that spreading y

first_imgDoug Casey has said over and over that spreading your political risk beyond one jurisdiction is the single most important thing he can recommend today. Obtaining a second passport and citizenship in another country is a critical part in heeding Doug’s advice. This is because it’s a fundamental step towards minimizing the political risk of being subjected to the whims of any single government. The political diversification benefits that come with obtaining a second passport are universal and prudent for anyone in the world to obtain… especially those under a desperate (fiscally or otherwise) government. Here are the top six reasons why everyone needs a second passport. Reason #1: More Internationalization Options Obtaining a second passport can literally open the door to a world of internationalization options for your assets and income that are off limits to citizens of certain countries. This is especially true for Americans, who are often treated as if they have the plague when they attempt to open foreign financial accounts and are increasingly being forced to close the ones they already have. Due to the ever-growing pile of regulations, foreign banks and brokerages are making the logical business decision that the costs of compliance outweigh any benefits of having Americans as clients. Opening a foreign financial account as an American citizen ranges from being impossible to very difficult in most circumstances. When you consider the totality of it, these vast regulations amount to a soft form of capital controls, which will likely turn into overt capital controls at some point in the future. Obtaining a second passport can also make purchasing real estate in foreign countries easier. For example, while it is an excellent place to consider for a bolt-hole, Switzerland is a notoriously difficult place for a foreigner to purchase real estate. However, certain foreigners (EU citizens) have fewer restrictions imposed on them others. Reason #2: More Visa-Free Travel One characteristic of a good passport is how much visa-free travel it allows. Applying for a visa that has to be approved before your trip (as opposed to being able to obtain it at the border) is a real hassle. Having to jump through hoops in advance of a trip can be a frustrating, time-consuming, and costly process. Brazil, Chile, and Argentina all collect a visa fee (of about US$160) from travelers who present a US passport. According to a recent study, Finnish and Swedish passports offer visa-free travel to the most countries. Not surprisingly, a country like Afghanistan has one of the least useful passports. You can find more information on this study as well as the rankings of countries according to the visa-free access of their passports here. Reason #3: Avoid Foreign Policy Blowback If your home government has developed a bad habit of sticking its nose in the internal affairs of other nations, it could make you a target should you happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Like an upscale shopping mall in Kenya in late September 2013. There are, of course, passports that have minimal foreign policy blowback risk. For example, when was the last time you saw Swiss passport holders targeted? Reason #4: Preempt Travel/People Controls A second passport can also come in handy when a government decides to starting treating its own citizens as beef cows instead of milking cows (i.e., when they need more soldiers for war) or if passport restrictions and other types of people controls are implemented. In any case, it prevents your home government from basically placing you under house arrest by revoking or cancelling your passport for any reason it sees fit. The Syrian government, for example, previously refused to renew the passports of Syrians abroad whom it suspected of being associated with the opposition. This is not surprising and should have been completely predictable. Any government could and would behave in a similar manner as they all have the ability to revoke the citizenship and/or passport of their citizens at a moment’s notice under any pretext that they find convenient. Just look at how the US cancelled Edward Snowden’s passport by fiat. It is not inconceivable that the US government would make it more difficult for Ron Paul supporters and libertarians to travel internationally one day in the future. Heck, they have already taken the first step and labeled them potential domestic terrorists. The bottom line is that if you hold political views that the establishment of your home government does not like, don’t be surprised when they decide to restrict your travel options. In this case, having the political diversification that comes from having a second passport is even more important. Reason #5: You Don’t Have to Live Like a Refugee It’s like how the old Tom Petty song goes… “You don’t have to live like a refugee.” Having a second passport ensures that you will always have another place to potentially call home, another place where you will always have the legal right to live and work. In worst case scenarios, a second passport guarantees that once you get out of Dodge, you won’t have to live like a refugee. Having citizenship in another country gives you the legal right to live and work there and possibly other countries. EU citizens have the right to live and work in the 28 member countries. Reason #6: Renunciation In all likelihood, you will need a second passport should you decide to take the drastic step of renouncing your citizenship. This allows you to reap huge tax and regulatory benefits if your home country burdens its citizens with suffocating and inescapable tax policies. It should be noted that the US has what amounts to an “exit tax” for citizens who renounce and meet certain conditions. This puts a premium on renouncing before you qualify to be stung with the “exit tax.” It is an especially attractive option for entrepreneurial and internationally-mobile young Americans who have a large portion of their potential earnings still in the future. Of course, few will actually follow the path of Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin or singer Tina Turner and take the extreme step of renunciation. And you certainly don’t need to. There are MANY other ways you can internationalize and reduce your political risk. Not Easy, But Necessary Unfortunately, there are no paths to obtaining a legitimate second passport that are at the same time fast, easy, and inexpensive. However this does not diminish the necessity of doing so. Political risk is growing in most parts of the world (especially the West). This is especially true for countries in deteriorating fiscal health, which will predictably turn to increasing measures to squeeze their citizenry for every penny they can get away with. You have probably noticed there is a lot of misinformation and bad advice out there regarding second passports, which, if followed, could likely end up causing you significant problems and limiting your options. Your goal should be the opposite: minimizing your problems and expanding your options. It is essential in these shark-infested waters to have a trusted resource like Casey Research to provide you with reliable information. You can find our top picks for the best countries to obtain a second passport in and how to do it here.last_img read more

The women are mostly in their early 20s They have

first_imgThe women are mostly in their early 20s. They have children at home. Selling betel nut — an addictive, natural chew — to passersby in mountain towns of Papua New Guinea is a good way to earn a living.But the extra income sometimes comes at a heavy price: violent beatings by their spouses. Two out of three women in Papua New Guinea experience abuse at the hands of an intimate partner at least once in their lifetime, according to the World Health Organization and aid groups.Betel nut sellers in Goroka, the main city in the Eastern Highlands, say physical violence is particularly common in their marriages.”If I give him my earnings, he leaves me alone,” says Mala, 20, who sells betel nut and other goods in Goroka. She’s talking about the man she married when she was 12.”But if I refuse and argue that I am sitting in the sun and working hard to earn an income, he gets angry and hits me,” she adds. Like other women interviewed, she asked to be identified only by her first name for privacy and out of fear of her husband.A dirt road near the Goroka airport leads to a squatter settlement down the hill. Dozens of women preside over stacks of vegetables on blankets or sell fried eggs out of big plastic containers. About 80 percent of Papua New Guineans participate in the informal economy, but betel nut sellers say they’re often singled out by authorities and fined for making sales in the street. They are also harassed by criminal raskol gangs, who demand free cigarettes.Betel nut is the pit of the walnut-sized fruit of an areca palm tree. In Tok Pisin, one of the major national languages, it is called buai. The nut is chewed throughout the Pacific islands for a high similar to nicotine, and about as addictive. It is also carcinogenic and is believed to contribute to Papua New Guinea’s high rate of mouth cancer, the most common type of cancer in the country.In the highlands, one betel nut costs 1 kina, the equivalent of 30 cents. People take it with a mustard stick and slacked lime powder, which turns the mixture bright red and compels the chewer to spit — often onto the ground or into a small plastic bag.People chew it to relax and to get to know one another. “It’s the fruit of love!” one Goroka resident exclaims.Men lashing outWhen men react violently because their wives are earning money on their own, it’s because they see power as a zero-sum game, says Richard Eves, an Australian National University anthropologist who has published several studies on masculinity based on fieldwork in Papua New Guinea’s highlands.”So any powerful woman is seen as a loss for men,” Eves says. “Basically, they want to keep the status quo of them being the powerful person in the household. So that entails bullying their wives, and beating them up.” While aid groups trying to stop violence against women may default toward focusing on female survivors, he says they should spend time with both sexes.”There’s strong social pressures on the masculine role model there, to be assertive, to be in control, to be dominating,” Eves says. “One of the things we need to do is challenge those rather toxic notions of masculinity that are at work.”Patty, a 27-year-old betel nut seller in Goroka, dropped out of school in second grade. At the time, her family struggled to pay for school fees and decided to educate her brothers instead.When she got older, she started selling betel nut at night, when there’s less competition and plenty of customers — people heading out to bars and nightclubs. But it is also a time when most Goroka residents stay home, fearing the high crime rate and armed raskol gangs that patrol the streets.”For other women, it’s risky for them, they feel frightened. But for those of us who grew up in the settlement, it’s safe for us,” Patty says.Her sister-in-law Joyce runs a small market, selling cookies and canned tuna. Both she and Patty asked that only their first names be used so they could speak openly about private, sensitive issues involving work and home life.Their husbands, who are brothers, began to demand a share of their profits. A few months ago, the women saw that their earnings were missing again.”Both our husbands are unemployed and don’t work. We do sales, earn enough money and save some aside,” Patty says.”Then they come and take our money to go and drink,” Joyce interjects. “So we fight. We become upset and we fight.”They confronted their husbands in a public market, brandishing a knife. The confrontation ended without major injuries, but the abuse didn’t stop.Domestic violence is illegal in Papua New Guinea, but it is rarely prosecuted. Instead of turning to police, survivors are much more likely to turn to family members or their community for retribution.”I am not happy, but this is life”The settlement where the betel nut sellers live is a maze of homes built with brush material, over streams and gullies. Extended families often live together in a collection of homes they built themselves, the houses facing each other across a courtyard of hard-packed soil.Increasingly, Papua New Guineans are leaving ancestral lands in search of jobs and education in cities and towns. But the cost of living in urban areas is far higher than in the countryside, and many people make their homes in informal squatter settlements like this one.About 62 percent of adults can read and write in Papua New Guinea, according to UNICEF. Jobs are scarce for those without a formal education, pushing many people into an informal economy of selling goods on the street.One of Patty’s childhood friends, who asked not to be named out of concern for her family’s privacy, is quieter than the others. She’s 21, with bright blue braids woven into her hair. At night, she sells betel nut and loose cigarettes.”When we sell properly, we make 4 kina [$1.20] profit from a pack of cigarettes. But if the drunks come and destroy our market, we have a loss,” she says through an interpreter.Her parents forced her to marry when she got pregnant at 15. But her husband was controlling, and would accuse her of having affairs when she sold betel nut.”I asked him why,” she recalls. “‘I loved you and I married you. Why are you mistreating me like this, belting me up?’ And my husband said, ‘I don’t want you go out and seeing other men.’ That’s why he was hitting me.””Belting” is a term used to describe repeated strikes with an open hand or closed fist — generally not a belt, despite the name — and is often seen as a form of discipline.She left her husband, returned to her parents’ village and married again. But she came back when she got word that her first husband had been diagnosed with a terminal illness.”He has mistreated me badly. But now that he’s sick, you know, I have compassion for him. I’m taking care of him because there are no other people that can support him,” she says.Many of the women who sell betel nut left school early and married young — out of family pressure, financial necessity or both. When faced with abuse, they adapt in different ways. Some file for divorce. Others, for various reasons, fear leaving their husbands.Patty decided to remain in her marriage. Her husband once beat her until she lost consciousness. When she came to, she decided to fight back.”I got a knife and chased him. He slept outside for two nights and didn’t come home,” Patty says. “If he hits me in public, I beat him up as well. So he can feel the pain I’m feeling.”Joyce, Patty’s sister-in-law, says she got a court order to stop her husband from hitting her.”If he does it again, I can report him to be locked up for 10 years. Or he’ll have to pay 10,000 kina [about $3,000] in compensation,” she says. “So he’s finally reforming himself.”She says she’ll stay in her marriage because she has two children, and because her husband paid a customary bride price to her family equal to $1,000.”He has fulfilled the custom and my people accepted the bride price payment, so I can’t go back,” Joyce says. “I am not happy, but this is life. So I just endure it and stay.”As for Mala, she went to court and got a divorce from her husband. But when she sat down on a friend’s porch a couple of months later to talk about it, she was ashen.”My mind is troubled when I’m alone,” she says. “I don’t have healthy thoughts.”Her ex-husband remarried, but that wasn’t the end of it.In the early spring, Mala walked to the market to sell fried eggs. Her ex-husband saw her, and beat her in the middle of the street.”I brought my eggs back to the house, and I told him that he ruins and stops every hope of running my business,” Mala says. “So I stay at home.”That day, she says, she decided to move to a bigger city. Now, she’s going to try and make it on her own. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.last_img read more

Senate Democrats who are divided on abortion poli

first_imgSenate Democrats, who are divided on abortion policy, are instead turning to health care as a rallying cry for opposition to Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee.Specifically, they are sounding the alarm that confirming the conservative District Court judge could jeopardize one of the Affordable Care Act’s most popular provisions — its protections for people with pre-existing health conditions.”Democrats believe the No. 1 issue in America is health care, and the ability of people to get good health care at prices they can afford,” said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.The Kavanaugh nomination, he added, “would put a dagger” through the heart of that belief.Democratic senators spent Tuesday trying to connect the dots between potential threats to health care and Trump’s high court pick.”President Trump as a candidate made it very clear that his priority was to put justices on the court who would correct for the fatal flaw of John Roberts,” said Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., on the Senate floor Tuesday. Chief Justice Roberts was the decisive fifth vote to uphold the ACA in a key case in 2012. “[Republicans’] new strategy is to use the court system to invalidate the protections in the law for people with pre-existing conditions,” Murphy said.Murphy — and many of his Democratic colleagues — are referring to a case filed in Texas in February by 20 Republican state attorneys general. The AGs from these states charge that because the tax bill passed by Congress last year eliminated the tax penalty for not having health insurance, it rendered the entire federal health law void.Their reasoning was that Roberts based his opinion upholding the ACA on Congress’ taxing power. Without the tax, the AGs argue, the law should be held unconstitutional.The Trump administration, which might have been expected to defend the ACA because defending federal law is part of what the Justice Department is tasked to do, opted instead, in this case, to follow a different course of action.In a response filed in June, political appointees in the department said eliminating the penalty should not invalidate the entire ACA. But, they argued, it should nullify provisions that prevent insurers from refusing to sell insurance to people with pre-existing conditions or charging them higher premiums.If this argument were to be upheld by a newly reconstituted Supreme Court, the health law would be dealt a serious blow.The lawsuit, however, is only in its earliest stages. And many legal scholars on both sides doubt it will get very far.In an amicus brief filed with the court in June, five liberal and conservative legal experts (who disagreed on previous ACA cases) this time argued that both the Republican attorneys general and the Justice Department are wrong — that eliminating the mandate penalty should have no impact on the rest of the law.Their position is rooted in something called “congressional intent.” When a court wants to invalidate a portion of a law, it usually also has to determine whether Congress would have considered other aspects of the law unworkable without it.But that is not a problem in this case, the legal experts argued in their brief.”Here, Congress itself has essentially eliminated the provision in question and left the rest of a statute standing,” they wrote. “In such cases, congressional intent is clear.”The merits of the lawsuit notwithstanding, the issue works well for Democrats.For one thing, the health law’s pre-existing condition protections are among its most popular parts, according to public opinion polls.And unlike abortion, defending the health law is something all Senate Democrats can rally around. That includes some vulnerable senators in states that voted for Trump in 2016, including Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., and Joe Donnelly, D-Ind. None are strong supporters of abortion rights. But all have stood firm against GOP efforts to take apart the Affordable Care Act.Manchin, for example, issued a statement about the nomination that said, “The Supreme Court will ultimately decide if nearly 800,000 West Virginians with preexisting conditions will lose their health care.”Manchin’s opponent in November is his state’s Republican attorney general, Patrick Morrisey, who is one of the officials who filed the suit against the health law.Julie Rovner is chief Washington correspondent for Kaiser Health News, a nonprofit news service, which is an editorially independent program of the Kaiser Family Foundation and not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente. Copyright 2018 Kaiser Health News. To see more, visit Kaiser Health News.last_img read more

Weed use is taking off as more states move to lega

first_imgWeed use is taking off as more states move to legalize it. And with all the buzz over medical marijuana, it’s starting to gain an aura of healthfulness. But there are some serious health risks associated with frequent use. One of the more troubling ones is the risk of having a psychotic episode. Several past studies have found that more frequent use of pot is associated with a higher risk of psychosis, that is, when someone loses touch with reality. Now a new study published Tuesday in the The Lancet Psychiatry shows that consuming pot on a daily basis and especially using high potency cannabis increases the odds of having a psychotic episode later. “This is more evidence that the link between cannabis and psychosis matters,” says Krista M. Lisdahl, a clinical neuropsychologist at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, who wasn’t involved in the study.The study authors consider “high potency cannabis” to be products with more than 10 percent tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, the compound responsible for the drug’s psychoactive effects. The fact that consuming high THC cannabis products has a greater risk is concerning, Lisdahl says, because these products are more common in the market now.The study also shows that three European cities — London, Paris and Amsterdam — where high potency weed is most commonly available actually have higher rates of new cases of psychosis than the other cities in the study. The researchers identified 901 people aged 18 to 64 who were diagnosed with their first episode of psychosis between May 2010 and April 2015, at a mental health facility anywhere in 11 cities, including London, Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona, other cities across Europe, and one site in Brazil.The researchers then asked these individuals and a control group of 1,200-plus other healthy people about their habits, including their use of weed. “We asked people if they used cannabis, when did they start using it and what kind of cannabis,” explains study author Marta Di Forti, a psychiatrist and clinician scientist at King’s College London. People reported the names of weed strains they used, like skunk in the U.K., or the Dutch Nederwiet, which allowed the researchers to identify the THC content in each product through data gathered by the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction and national data from the different countries. The study found that those who used pot daily were three times more likely to have a psychotic episode compared to someone who never used the drug. Those who started using cannabis at the age of 15 or less had a slightly more elevated risk than those who started using in later years. Use of high potency weed almost doubled the odds of having psychosis compared to someone who had never smoked weed, explains Di Forti. And for those who used high potency pot on a daily basis, the risk of psychosis was even greater — four times greater than those who had never used. The easy availability of high-THC weed is a recent phenomenon, she notes. “Almost twenty years ago, there wasn’t much high potency cannabis available [in the market].” One recent study showed that high potency cannabis is increasingly dominating markets. It found that the average potency of weed in Europe and the U.S. in 2017 was 17.1 percent, up from 8.9 percent in 2008. And some products can be even more potent. For example, in the Netherlands, the THC content of one product that’s gained popularity, locally produced Dutch resin Nederhasj, can be as high as 67 percent. “What this paper has done that’s really nice is they look at rates of psychosis and cannabis use in lots of different places where underlying rates of psychosis are different,” says Suzanne Gage, a psychologist and epidemiologist at the University of Liverpool, who wrote a commentary linked to the study in The Lancet Psychiatry. This allowed the researchers to compare incidence of psychosis with the availability and use of high THC cannabis in the different cities, she says. The study found that the three European cities — London, Paris and Amsterdam — had the highest rates of new diagnoses of psychosis — 45.7 per 100,000 person-years in London, 46.1 in Paris and 37.9 in Amsterdam. These are also cities where high potency weed is most easily available and commonly used.Other European cities in Spain, Italy and France on the other hand have less than 10 percent THC content in most popular cannabis products on the market. These cities also have lower rates of new psychosis diagnosis, according to the study. “One of the things that’s really novel is that they could show that variation of use and potency of cannabis was related to rates of first-episode psychosis,” says Lisdahl. One critique of the theory that weed contributes to psychosis risk has been that while more people are using weed worldwide, there hasn’t been a corresponding rise in rates of psychosis, explains Gage. But the new study shows that cities with more easily available high THC weed do have a higher rate of new diagnoses of psychosis. “That’s a really interesting finding and that’s not something anyone has done before,” she adds. However, the study doesn’t prove causality, cautions Dr. Diana Martinez, a psychiatrist and addiction researcher at Columbia University. “You can’t say that cannabis causes psychosis,” she says. “It’s simply not supported by the data,” she says. Lisdahl agrees. In order to show causality, one would have to follow people over time — before they started using weed to years later when they have their psychotic episodes, she says. “You need twins in the studies, you need genetic information,” among all other kinds of data, she says. Psychotic disorders like schizophrenia and bipolar are complicated, “multi-faceted disorders,” notes Gage. “In all psychotic disorders, there is this multiple hit hypothesis,” says Martinez. Many factors influence whether and how these disorders manifest. Genetics is known to play a major role, as are a host of environmental factors. “Children who have risk of schizophrenia but grow up in stable homes…they may not go on to develop schizophrenia,” she adds. The Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development study, which is funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health is attempting to tease out the various influences, says Lisdahl. “The NIH has now invested in that question.” In the meantime, the new findings should be of interest to anyone using cannabis, says study author Di Forti. “There are people across the world who use cannabis for a variety of reasons,” she says. “Some of them recreationally, some of them for medicinal purposes.” They should be aware that using high potency cannabis comes with a risk, she says. “They need to know what to look for and ask for help, if they come across characteristics of a psychotic disorder,” she adds. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more

8 SEO and Social Media Trends You Need to Know About

first_img Next Article 8 SEO and Social Media Trends You Need to Know About –shares 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List 6 min read Guest Writer Add to Queue Social Media Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.center_img June 27, 2016 Jayson DeMers Founder and CEO, AudienceBloom If you feel a bit behind the times when it comes to SEO and social media, I can’t blame you. I read the news every day, adjust my company’s and clients’ strategies regularly and still feel behind. That’s because trends never stay the same for very long, and there are always new ones emerging to challenge the status quo.Related: 6 New Social Media Marketing Tools the Experts Use. You Should, Too.If you haven’t taken a scrutinizing look at your SEO and social media strategies lately, now’s a good time to take inventory and see where you fall, in relation to the latest trends and tactics in the industry. These eight trends are some of the most important to know about this year.1. Live video and real-time engagementThere’s no question that video content is on the rise, in popularity and significance. Users have faster, more mobile internet connections, and the flood of written content on the web has left users hungry for something more visually engaging. Beyond that, live, in-the-moment content is becoming more important in the social realm thanks to mobile experiences and constant communication. These two trends together are facilitating the rise of live-streaming video, which is being promoted by most major social media profiles, and you can expect it to grow in both streaming and viewing figures.2. Digital assistants and voice searchDigital assistants like Siri and Cortana have been steadily growing in sophistication and user adoption for the past several years, and now a new kind of digital assistant is emerging — the home unit. Amazon Alexa and Google Home are just two examples of how voice search is gradually gaining significance in our daily lives. What does this mean for search? It means an even lower focus on short, core keywords, and a higher focus on long-tail keywords and on conversational, colloquial types of searches. You will have to adapt your content accordingly.3. The rise of social contentThere’s no shortage of content on social media, from brands and users alike, but now that features like Facebook’s Instant Articles are emerging, we may see a new kind of social content develop. Users are already starting to warm to the idea that videos automatically play in their newsfeeds, and full-fledged articles are available without users ever having to leave a social app. This puts an increased demand on brands to provide content through social channels first, which as you might imagine, also has implications for traditional on-site SEO.4. Increased priorities on apps.Adding to the complexity of these in-app experiences, both social media platforms and search engines like Google are favoring apps more and more in their new features. Google, for example, is developing features like app streaming to prioritize the visibility and usage of apps for mobile users. As this trend develops, apps will take on an even more important role in users’ online experiences, possibly pushing us ever closer to an eventual “death” of traditional websites.Related: 5 Up-and-Coming Social Media Tools You Should Know About5. Social commerceBuyable pins by Pinterest were one of the first “true” social commerce hybrid features, crossing a boundary beyond simple social media advertising to create a new kind of online experience. Thanks to the popularity of social commerce, more social media brands are considering the model and tinkering with their own advertising strategies; expect to see a more fluid online experience for online shoppers in the near future, which may decrease the need for your own stand-alone website in an SEO context.6. Rich answersGoogle’s rich answers — those helpful snippets of information you get for certain answerable queries — are rising in prevalence. On one hand, this is threatening, because users are getting highly visible, immediate answers for questions that previously might have led them to your site. But, don’t forget that Google still relies on websites for this information: You can use structured markup and content-targeting on your own site to exploit this and gain more visibility for queries related to your brand.7. Machine learningMachine learning in the context of SEO and social media marketing is still in its infancy, but it’s already starting to make an impact. Google’s RankBrain has already had a significant impact, and it may be serving as a pilot program to evaluate the effectiveness of a machine-learning algorithm left on its own. Soon, things like search engine updates, social newsfeed algorithm changes and even some forms of marketing automation will be left to artificial intelligence. I won’t speculate what this might mean for your job, but it will certainly make the marketing world faster changing and even less predictable.8. PersonalizationThe run-of-the-mill general content won’t be enough for most users — at least not for much longer. Today’s average user is spoiled, with controllable newsfeeds on social media and search results that vary based on location, search history and other factors specific to individual users. The public is gradually demanding content and advertising that’s more individualized and more relevant than ever. Niche-targeting and more individual experiences, especially on social media, are going to become more necessary for success.None of these trends demands a complete overhaul to your strategy — at least not yet — but they should give you a few ideas on how to adjust your campaign for the near future. You may need to redistribute your budget to favor more effective strategies or increase your budget, to experiment with a new channel, but the most important thing to do is consider the long-term future and remain flexible.Related: Social Media Trends to Look Out For in 2016Even if you don’t take immediate action, knowing what developments are in the pipeline can help you position your strategy for easier and more agile future changes. Image credit: ArthurStock | Shutterstock Apply Now » The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue.last_img read more

iHeartMedia Doubles Down on Radio Attribution with Agreement to Support Nielsen Media

first_img Continuous Diary MeasurementiHeartMediaMarketing Technology NewsNewsNielsenNielsen Media Impact Previous ArticleSellozo Releases Campaign Studio: Drag-and-Drop Ad Management and Optimization Tool for Businesses Selling on AmazonNext ArticleSisense Brings Power to the Builders With New Cloud-Native Linux Platform, Insights to Everyone With Predictive AI Technology iHeartMedia Doubles Down on Radio Attribution with Agreement to Support Nielsen Media Impact and Continuous Diary Measurement PRNewswireJune 13, 2019, 3:02 pmJune 13, 2019 Nielsen Moves Ahead with Continuous Diary Measurement in Four Book MarketsNielsen announced that iHeartMedia, Inc., the number one audio company in the US, will advance radio attribution by supporting Nielsen Media Impact (NMI) and Continuous Diary Measurement (CDM) in Nielsen Audio’s four book markets.With this agreement, Nielsen moves forward with its decision to implement Continuous Diary Measurement as planned in radio markets currently measured four times a year.  In addition, iHeartMedia’s support boosts the momentum of Nielsen’s national cross-media planning tool, Nielsen Media Impact.“Nielsen Audio is thrilled to be collaborating with iHeartMedia on these important, forward-looking industry level initiatives,” said Brad Kelly, Managing Director, Nielsen Audio. “Billion dollar advertisers are telling us with absolute clarity that fresh data and cross-platform media analytics are of paramount importance. These are critical inputs which fuel the marketing mix models — the same models that guide vast marketing and ad spend budgets.”Marketing Technology News: Live Data Is Now The Lifeblood For Telco Value Creation“The advertising ecosystem is evolving quickly,” continued Kelly.  “Nielsen Audio and the radio industry must keep pace. The advancement of Continuous Diary Measurement in combination with Nielsen Media Impact will allow both buyers and sellers of radio to better evaluate, react, and adapt to marketplace changes. We are confident these tools will help level the playing field and bring radio’s attribution metrics on par with other media.”“Marketing Mix Models need fresh data to get a full understanding of how radio drives sales results and Continuous Diary Measurement enables better attribution with more current data in the larger diary markets,” said Greg Ashlock, President, iHeartMedia Markets Group. “We also look forward to using Nielsen Media Impact to show clients how iHeartMedia substantially improves advertising results in optimized cross media campaigns.”Marketing Technology News: IBM Infuses Db2 with AI to Bring Data Science and Database Management Under One PlatformContinuous Diary Measurement will start with the July 2019 survey in the 46 Nielsen Audio markets that are currently measured four times a year. The survey period covers April 25 to July 17 and the reports will be delivered between August 14th and August 23rd. Effective with the launch of CDM, 94 metros will have monthly reporting (48 PPM markets and 46 CDM markets) representing ~80% of radio’s ad spend and population in Nielsen Audio markets. Nielsen will pause its plans to introduce CDM in two book markets while it continues to work with clients to determine the best path forward to evolve radio measurement and establish attribution metrics in the small and mid-size markets.Nielsen Media Impact is a cross-platform media planning and optimization solution that helps clients understand total campaign reach, frequency and duplication using advanced audience segments. NMI will enable iHeartMedia to demonstrate the value that its broad audience brings to an advertiser’s media plan and illustrate their substantial incremental reach.Marketing Technology News: Actifio Announces Global Alliance with Tata Consultancy Services to Provide Multi-Cloud Copy Data Management Solutions for Data-Driven Enterpriseslast_img read more

Bulldogs screw tails linked to rare inherited syndrome in humans

first_img Source:https://www.ucdavis.edu/news/bulldogs%E2%80%99-screw-tails-linked-human-genetic-disease Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Jan 3 2019With their small size, stubby faces and wide-set eyes, bulldogs, French bulldogs and Boston terriers are among the most popular of domestic dog breeds. Now researchers at the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine have found the genetic basis for these dogs’ appearance, and linked it to a rare inherited syndrome in humans.Bulldogs, French bulldogs and Boston terriers aren’t the only dogs with short, wide heads, but they do share another feature not found in other breeds: a short, kinked tail or “screwtail,” said Professor Danika Bannasch, Department of Population Health and Reproduction in the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. These three breeds all lack the vertebrae that make up the tail bone, she said.The researchers sequenced the whole genome — the entire DNA sequence — of 100 dogs, including 10 from screwtail breeds. All the participating dogs were privately owned pets seen at the UC Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, whose owners agreed to participate. Graduate students Tamer Mansour and Katherine Lucot, with C. Titus Brown, associate professor at the School of Veterinary Medicine and Genome Center, searched through the DNA sequences to find changes associated with screwtail breeds.From more than 12 million individual differences they were able to identify one mutation, in a gene called DISHEVELLED 2 or DVL2. This variant was found in 100 percent of the bulldogs and French bulldogs sampled, and was very common in Boston terriers.This kind of whole genome comparison is relatively new, Bannasch said.”Normally, we would have first had to identify a region DNA and work from there,” she said. “We could look at breed-specific traits, but not as well as we can now.”Link to Robinow syndromeRelated StoriesFungal infection study identifies specific genetic vulnerability among Hmong peopleNew study identifies eight genetic variants associated with anorexia nervosaDoes genetic testing affect psychosocial health?Professor Henry Ho at the UC Davis School of Medicine studies similar genes in humans. Mutations in the related DVL1 and DVL3 genes are known to cause Robinow syndrome, a rare inherited disorder in humans characterized by strikingly similar anatomical changes — a short, wide “babyface,” short limbs and spinal deformities. In addition, Robinow patients and the screwtail breeds also share other disease traits, such as cleft palate. In both humans and dogs, DVL genes are part of a signaling pathway called WNT involved in development of the skeleton and nervous system, among other things, said Peter Dickinson, professor of surgical and radiological sciences at the School of Veterinary Medicine. By characterizing the screwtail DVL2 protein product, Sara Konopelski, a graduate student the Ho lab, pinpointed a key biochemical step in the WNT pathway that is disrupted by the mutation. This finding further suggests that a common molecular defect is responsible for the distinct appearances of both Robinow patients and screwtail dog breeds.The DVL2 screwtail mutation is so common in these breeds, and so closely tied to the breed appearance, that it would be difficult to remove it by breeding, Dickinson said. Other genes are known to contribute to short, wide “brachycephalic” heads in dogs, and there are likely multiple genes that contribute both to appearance and to chronic health problems in these breeds.Understanding a common mutation in popular dog breeds may, however, give more insight into the rare Robinow syndrome in humans. Only a few hundred cases have been documented since the syndrome was identified in 1969.”It’s a very rare human disease but very common in dogs, so that could be a model for the human syndrome,” Bannasch said.last_img read more

The type of saturated fats we eat can affect our cardiovascular heath

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jan 29 2019The type of saturated fats we eat can affect our risk of a heart attack, according to a study published in the International Journal of Cardiology. People whose diets contain relatively little palmitic and stearic acid – saturated fats composed of 16 or more carbon atoms (longer-chain saturated fats) that are typically found in meats – and eat plant-based proteins instead have decreased chances of myocardial infarction. Moreover, individuals who eat more saturated fats with 14 or fewer carbon atoms (shorter-chain saturated fats) that are typically found in dairy products have lower risk of myocardial infarction.”Our analysis of the diets of large groups of individuals in two countries over time shows that the type of saturated fats we could affect our cardiovascular heath,” consume explained lead investigator Ivonne Sluijs, PhD, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht University, Utrecht, Netherlands.The study investigated whether saturated fats with chains varying in length from 4 to 18 carbon atoms are associated with the risk of developing a myocardial infarction. Data from approximately 75,000 people in the UK and Denmark were analyzed. Of these two groups, nearly 3,500 people experienced myocardial infarction in the period between the study’s initial outreach and follow-up 13 years later (in Denmark) and 18 years later (in the UK).”We found that eating relatively little of the longer chained saturated fatty acids and consuming plant-based proteins instead was associated with a lowered risk. Substitution of those saturated fats with other energy sources such as carbohydrates did not affect the risk to develop myocardial infarction,” said Dr. Sluijs. Although diets vary by nationality and other factors, the most frequently consumed saturated fat is palmitic acid, with 16 carbon atoms, followed by stearic acid, with 18 carbon atoms, both of which are found in meat products. Consumption of saturated fats that have shorter carbon atom chains and are present in dairy products is less prevalent.Since the 1960s, when diets high in saturated fat were linked to elevated “bad” LDL cholesterol and coronary heart disease, dietary guidelines recommended restricting saturated fatty acids across the board. In recent years, research studies have raised some questions about what was considered established evidence. Inconsistent findings have pointed to the possibility that different types of saturated fats have different effects on cholesterol levels and the development of coronary heart disease. Despite the fact that their study’s findings support this hypothesis, Dr. Sluijs and her fellow investigators recommend proceeding with caution before changing dietary guidelines:Related StoriesStudy explores role of iron in over 900 diseasesCancer incidence among children and young adults with congenital heart diseaseCutting around 300 calories a day protects the heart even in svelte adults”Our study only allowed us to draw conclusions on the level of associations between saturated fatty acids and the development of myocardial infarction. We do not know whether those fatty acids are actually the cause of differences between the occurrences of myocardial infarction we observed. To further explore this, we need experiments in which the consumption of saturated fatty acids is more controlled and, for instance, compared with consumption of unsaturated fatty acids,” she noted.”The study is applaudable for its large size, prospective cohort study design, and detailed assessment of diet and lifestyle factors. In addition, it is among the few studies that specifically examined individual saturated fatty acids in relation to coronary heart disease risk and compared with different macronutrients,” commented Jun Li, MD, PhD, and Qi Sun, MD, ScD, both at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA, in an accompanying editorial. They also noted a few limitations of the study and thus called for cautious interpretation of the overall null results for the primary saturated fatty acids.Dr. Li and Dr. Sun advise that shifts in fat intake should align with the recommended healthy dietary patterns, which emphasize limited intakes of red and processed meat and added sugars, lower salt intake, replacement of refined grains with whole grains, and higher consumption of fruits and vegetables.Source: https://www.elsevier.com/about/press-releases/research-and-journals/not-all-saturated-fats-are-equal-when-it-comes-to-heart-healthlast_img read more

Google moves to fix YouTube glitch exploited for child porn

first_img © 2019 AFP Citation: Google moves to fix YouTube glitch exploited for child porn (2019, February 21) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-02-google-youtube-glitch-exploited-child.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further YouTube demotes flat-earthers, conspiracy theoristscenter_img YouTube says it is moving to fix what was termed a “wormhole” exploited by people sharing information on child exploitation The response came after a YouTube creator this week revealed what he called a “wormhole” that allowed comments and connections on child porn alongside innocuous videos.”Any content—including comments—that endangers minors is abhorrent and we have clear policies prohibiting this on YouTube,” a spokesman said in an email to AFP.”We took immediate action by deleting accounts and channels, reporting illegal activity to authorities and disabling comments on tens of millions of videos that include minors. There’s more to be done, and we continue to work to improve and catch abuse more quickly.”The move came after Matt Watson, a YouTube creator with some 26,000 subscribers, revealed the workings of what he termed a “wormhole” into a pedophile ring that allowed users to trade social media contacts and links to child porn in YouTube comments.Watson, who uses the name MattsWhatItIs, added that YouTube’s recommendation algorithm “due to some kind of glitch is actually facilitating this.”Because ads automatically appear with many YouTube videos, Watson said the actions of the company amounted to “monetizing” the exploitation.The post by Watson sparked a series of news reports, and according to some media, boycotts of YouTube ads from major firms including Nestle and Disney.AT&T, which owns the WarnerMedia entertainment unit, confirmed it was pulling its ads from the service.”Until Google can protect our brand from offensive content of any kind, we are removing all advertising from YouTube,” AT&T said in a statement to AFP.Epic Games, known for its popular online game Fortnite, said it was suspending ads on YouTube following the news.”We have paused all pre-roll advertising” on YouTube, a company spokesman said.”Through our advertising agency, we have reached out to Google/YouTube to determine actions they’ll take to eliminate this type of content from their service.”The glitch appeared to allow some users to circumvent bans on child porn by Google and other internet platforms.The incident raised fears of a fresh “brand safety” crisis for YouTube, which lost advertisers last year following revelations that messages appeared on channels promoting conspiracy theories, white nationalism and other objectionable content. Google-owned YouTube said Thursday it was taking action to close a loophole that enabled users to share comments and links on child pornography over the video-sharing service.last_img read more

Amazon tries to prove its not a Dickensian workhouse opinion

first_imgNothing happens by accident, not even tweets. It’s clear from Amazon’s public relations efforts that it is sensitive about the perception that the company’s warehouses – where a material portion of Amazon’s more than 630,000 full- and part-time employees work – are Dickensian sweatshops that trap people in low-wage jobs until they can be replaced by robots.  This perception is not new, but there’s a sharper edge now to Amazon’s refutations of these claims. Amazon also seems anxious at the mere idea floated by outsiders that its cashier-less technology for retail stores might spread beyond its experimental Go convenience stores.   That is important context for Amazon’s announcement on Thursday that it plans to spend more than US$700mil (RM2.87bil) over the next few years to train its US employees to move into more highly skilled jobs inside or outside of Amazon.  The company already offers employee-advancement programmes such as college tuition reimbursement, as do many other businesses. Amazon’s newly disclosed training initiatives aren’t limited to warehouse workers and have multiple elements. Non-technical Amazon workers can learn software engineering or information-technology support skills, technical ones can receive on-site training in more advanced software, and Amazon pledged to expand its existing training certification programme for warehouse workers to get qualified for in-demand fields such as nursing.  Of course, it remains to be seen how useful these new or expanding training programmes will be, but it’s both a good thing to do and a pragmatic step. As the labour market tightens in the US, it’s sensible for companies to sweeten pay, benefits and perks to attract new employees and keep them from leaving. (Full disclosure: One of my family members works for a labour union that advocates for higher wages and other employee benefits.)  It’s also useful for tackling that sweatshop perception, which gets more attention as Amazon’s heft and profile grow. The company’s stock market value is hovering again near that symbolic US$1tril (RM4.11tril) level. Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and chief executive officer, is the wealthiest person in the world thanks largely to his holdings of Amazon stock.  And Amazon is unique among US technology superpowers in its reliance on a large number of blue-collar workers. The median annual total compensation for Amazon’s full-time US workers last year was nearly US$35,100 (RM144,348), which reflected two months of the minimum wage increase. The median wage of one of the company’s peers, Google parent company Alphabet Inc, was about US$247,000 (RM1.01mil).(1)  There are other things Amazon gets mad about now. Amazon is punchy at claims from some politicians that it doesn’t pay its fair share in taxes, or that it’s a muscular corporate giant swallowing America’s retail industry. It’s not clear that Amazon has changed how it behaves in reaction to those types of criticisms. But when it comes to the perception of Amazon as a sweatshop, the company’s rebuttals are more than just words.   (1) The Alphabet and Amazon figures are not comparable. Amazon singled out a pay figure for full-time US workers, for example, while Alphabet’s pay number is global. Amazon says the annualised median total compensation of all its employees was less than US$29,000 (RM119,262) last year. – Bloomberg(Shira Ovide is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering technology. She previously was a reporter for the Wall Street Journal.) Tech News 10 Jul 2019 Amazon workers in Minnesota plan six-hour strike during Prime Day event Related News Related News You can identify companies’ sore spots by what gets them angry.   Last week, the executive in charge of Amazon.com Inc’s logistics operation tweeted a rebuttal to a television show. Comedian John Oliver had devoted one of his trademark scathing and hilarious HBO segments to the working conditions in warehouses that handle e-commerce orders. Amazon was not the only company pilloried, but it was the most prominent.   “I am proud of our team and to suggest they would work in an environment like the one portrayed is insulting,” Dave Clark, senior vice-president of operations for Amazon, tweeted to Oliver’s TV series.  Clark last year also punched back against criticisms from Bernie Sanders, the US senator and presidential candidate, who had repeatedly taken Amazon to task for what he said were low wages and poor treatment of warehouse workers. Soon afterward, Amazon essentially capitulated to Sanders by announcing it would increase the minimum wage for its US workers to US$15 (RM62) an hour.   It’s clear from Amazon’s public relations efforts that it is sensitive about the perception that the company’s warehouses – where a material portion of Amazon’s more than 630,000 full- and part-time employees work – are Dickensian sweatshops that trap people in low-wage jobs until they can be replaced by robots. — AFP World 27 Jun 2019 Bernie Sanders seeks U.S. voters on live-streaming gaming site Tech News 04 Jul 2019 Amazon exec fires back at John Oliver after HBO segment on warehouses: ‘He is wrong’ {{category}} {{time}} {{title}}last_img read more

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