Take the National Officiating Survey

first_imgThe Australian Sports Commission (ASC) wants to learn more about the Australian officiating environment and is conducting research to hear about your experiences in officiating so that they can better tailor support for officiating in sport across Australia. Your participation will help to provide a snapshot of the officiating environment across different sports in Australia â€” it is the first of its kind in Australia.  The data collected will assist the ASC in developing support and resources as well as supporting sporting organisations in the development of best practice models for officiating pathways and development opportunities. As thanks for your participation, ASC will enter you into a draw to win two Gold Class Cinema tickets (5 chances to win). To enter, at the close of the survey you will be prompted for contact information.The survey will take around 20 minutes. No identifiable information (name, contact details) will be linked to your responses so you can be assured of your anonymity. Even if you provide contact details (optional but required for the prize draw) we will remove any contact information from reporting. This survey has been developed by the ASC in conjunction with Essence Communications.To complete the survey click on this link or copy this URL address (below) into your browser (you can do the survey on your phone or computer).   https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ASCOFFICIATINGAlso, please help us to share this survey with anyone you know who is involved in officiating. If you have any questions about the authenticity of the survey please email Ashley Synnott at Ashley.Synnott@ausport.gov.au. For any technical queries about the survey please contact Benita at benita@essencecomms.com.au.The survey will be open till Friday, 14 October 2016.Related LinksTake the National Officiating Surveylast_img read more

Vale Ron Hanson

first_imgIt with great sadness that the NSWTA advises of the passing of one of the games originals, both a pioneer and a stalwart of our game, Ron Hanson.Ron has been fighting Parkinson’s disease for the past number of years and today, he succumbs to the disease but is now in comfortably resting in peace.Ron was an original, a pioneer of the game who began playing in the very first Touch Football competition at Pioneer Park in 1968 with his beloved Bronte mates. He was coming off his days as a leading 1st Grade footballer for the Eastern Suburbs Roosters wanting to continue with playing a game similar and Touch Football provided the perfect avenue. He was good at it too. He was named as the first NSW Captain when the team he lead played Queensland at Erskineville Oval on 4th of August 1973 and defeated the old enemy 15-1. Three years later in 1976 he was named the first Australian Captain of the team that successfully toured New Zealand. From all reports Ron was an inspirational captain on the field and the life of the party off it.Ron however was not content with just playing, he was involved in every aspect of the game. He coached at high levels, was a selector from park football through to national level, became an administrator of the sport and even refereed a few games here and there. Although if you talk to those who played with Ronnie, they will tell you he refereed most games in which he played.Whilst playing was his passion, he left an indelible mark on the sport through his time as an administrator and selector. As an Administrator he was Regional Director for the old Region 4 going back as far as 1994 and also took a stint at the helm of the Northern Eagles after the amalgamation of the three northern regions. As a selector he selected club, regional, state and national teams. He didn’t just restrict himself to one region either, he made himself available to all. He would often assist other regions around the state where he could and also helped out at the Defence Force nationals for many years as well.Touch Football Australia CEO, Colm Maguire, expressed his admiration, gratitude and condolences for Ron and his family. â€œRon has an incredible legacy in our sport which will not be forgotten.  It is not just what he did on the field as a leader but as a volunteer, Coach and Administrator that will also be remembered.  Ron and indeed his family have touched so many lives including mine personally.”Our deepest condolences and love are with Fran, Samantha and Brad. We are truly blessed to have spent time with Ron and we will be there to support all of you through this time.”His legacy is not only left as a member of our sporting community based on his achievements but will endure through the friendships and lives he has been deeply engaged in. We will all miss you Ron,” Maguire said. In 2004 the NSWTA recognised Ron’s immense contribution to the game at many levels with the awarding of Life Membership to the NSWTA. In 2010 Touch Football Australia bestowed on Ron, a medal named in his honour. Each member of an Australian contingent to be honoured as the parties Flag Bearer is awarded and announced as the Ron Hanson Medallist, again a testament to his standing in the game and the character of the man. For those who have received that medal, we are sure they will be just a little bit prouder today.Our thoughts are with his wife of 44 years, Fran and his children Samantha and Brad as well as his grandchildren and extended family members.He is a gentleman who will be missed but certainly not forgotten by the Touch Footballing family across Australia.Credit: NSW Hornets Touch Association  Related LinksVale Ron Hansonlast_img read more

Quebec to hire Indigenous police officers in Val dOr as a pilot

first_imgDanielle Rochette APTN National NewsSupport for the Indigenous women in Val d’Or continues to grow.Last week, Crown prosecutors said no officers in the Quebec town will face charges after women came forward alleging sexual abuse.The province just announced a new pilot project that will see Indigenous officers stationed in Val d’Or.That hasn’t quieted calls for an inquiry.last_img

September 28 2015This past weekend Friday Septe

first_imgSeptember 28, 2015This past weekend, Friday, September 24. and Saturday, September 25. 2015, LAARK Production from Prescott performed “The Tempest” at Arcosanti.The Arcosanti buildings have lent themselves to dramatic settings for many past events and last week-end was a perfect example of how poignant individual settings can enhance a particular performance.[photo by Erin O’Loughlin, text by Sue Kirsch]The center of the Vaults became a ship in a terrific storm with thunder reverberating from the walls, with fire dancers flashing lightning from their fingers and and the heaving ocean created by enthusiastic waving of long sheets of silky material.[photo by Sue Kirsch]The audience then turned their chairs to watch the second part of the performance, Prospero and Miranda in front of the Colly Garden with wonderful lighting of the olive trees in the background…[photo by Colleen Connery]… with the sprite Ariel hiding in one of the trees before springing into action and the furies slinking along the grass in sinister fashion.[photo by Erin O’Loughlin]Audience and performers then moved to the Colly Soleri Amphitheater, where the performance continued with intensity and some very funny scenes.[photo by Colleen Connery]It was an all together enchanting evening.[photo by Erin O’Loughlin]last_img read more

Rep Glenn announces local office hours

first_imgFriday, April 267:30 to 8:30 a.m. at H&H Bakery and Restaurant, 200 S. Mable St. in Pinconning. Categories: Annette Glenn News 19Apr Rep. Glenn announces local office hours “As your representative in Lansing, remaining open and accessible to you is one of my top priorities,” Glenn said. “I look forward to speaking with residents about their issues and concerns.”No appointments are necessary to attend office hours. Those unable to attend may contact Rep. Glenn’s office at (517) 373-1791 or AnnetteGlenn@house.mi.gov. State Rep. Annette Glenn announced her in-district office hours for the month of April. The representative will be available at the following times and locations:Monday, April 22Noon to 1:00 p.m. at Tropical Smoothie, 985 S. Saginaw Road in Midland.last_img read more

Reza Izad ProSiebenSat1 Groupbacked multichannel

first_imgReza IzadProSiebenSat.1 Group-backed multichannel network Studio71 has named a new management team to take over from founders Sebastian Weil and Ronald Horstman, with US chief Reza Izad to become global CEO.Weil and Horstman are leaving the company at their own request at the end of June.Sebastian Romanus will join the company as joint managing director on June 1 from Maker studios, where we was responsible for the Disney-backed MCN’s German business. He worked at ProSiebenSat.1’s marketer SevenOne Media from 2005 to 2007, and has also held posts at Deutsches Sport-Fernsehen and Goviral, where he acted as managing director for the German-speaking region.Johan Griebl, a co-founder of the MCN who was previously responsible for artists and content as senior vice-president, will also serve as joint managing director alongside Romanus.Izad meanwhile will report to ProSiebenSat.1 executive board member Christof Wahl in what the German broadcast group describes as a realignment of Studio71’s international organisation.Wahl said: “In founding and developing Studio71, Sebastian Weil and Ronald Horstman created one of the world’s biggest and most successful online video companies from scratch with distinct entrepreneurial talent. I very much regret their departure and would like to thank them for their excellent work over the past four years. At the same time, I am delighted that the experienced founder and manager Reza Izad will now be taking on the global role as CEO of Studio71. He will step up the international expansion together with our new managing directors Sebastian Romanus and Johann Griebl.”Weill said: “When we launched Studio71 in 2013, we had no idea how big this company was to become. So we are all the more grateful to ProSiebenSat.1 and the fantastic Studio71 team that we have been able to achieve this together. We wish the new management team all the best and look forward to watching the further development of Studio71.”last_img read more

In This Issue   Rate Differentials to narrow

first_imgIn This Issue. *  Rate Differentials to narrow? *  Gold sees attempt to recover fade. *  Chuck’s kiss o ‘death is still alive. *  ECB meeting to disappoint once again? Bullard Throws A Cat Among The Pigeons! Good Day! .  And a Tub Thumpin’ Thursday to you! The skies are a Tub Thumpin’ this morning, as we get pelted with more rain. The temperature is supposed to rise to 77 today, which puts us smack dab in the middle of the high chances of a tornado that would come out of the storms today. So, for all the local folks, if you here the warning sirens, head to the basement. Tornadoes are nothing to mess with! When I look out at the currencies and metals this morning they appear to have been scattered about by the bad storms too! Yesterday, after signing off, Gold took off for higher ground, and before you could say, “look at Gold”, it was up $15, and looking like it was ready to head back to $1,300. But that euphoria didn’t last, as Fed Head James Bullard decided to throw his two-cents into the discussion on interest rates. Well, St. Louis Fed President, James Bullard, really lathered up the markets a bit yesterday, and caused some slippage in the currencies & metals VS the dollar by saying that he expects a rate hike in the first quarter of next year.  This is 3 months ahead of the most aggressive interpretation of Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s “considerable time after QE has ended”..   It’s important to note that Bullard is a non-voting member this year, but if that’s how he feels now, imagine when he is a voting member next year!  But once again, I think the Fed Heads are being overly optimistic. And I address this later today, with a quote from Richard Duncan on the Fed’s Tapering.  I still believe that strong economic growth is far from given. and in fact I think it’s a pipedream.  But in either case, this comment by Bullard sure acts as a wakeup call for the markets. So, at first, when the markets got all loosey Goosey about Yellen saying that rates would rise after some considerable time after QE ends, that was fine. Let them be wrong! But now they are carrying this rate hike talk into the rate differential discussions, and that would be funny if it weren’t true!  But now the markets are saying, “that with interest rates in the U.S. going higher (as if that were written in stone) the rate differential to the Antipodean currencies will narrow. And therefore they see that as a reason to sell the Antipodean currencies! UGH!  For those of you new to class, the Antipodean currencies are those of Australia and New Zealand.  And now you know that I’m a lazy writer, in that I would rather refer to the two currencies with one word, instead of 5 words! HA! So, I hope you see what I’m saying here. the markets are already thinking that interest rates are going higher in the U.S. sooner than later (Chuck thinks later, and when they do they’ll soar higher, but let’s not let that get in the way of our discussion!) and therefore the U.S. dollar should be bought. Hmmm. Oh well, I think this too will pass, but for now, we have to let the kids play outside! And before we go on, it’s important to tell you about another non-voting Fed Head who differs in opinion with Bullard. Fed Head Williams who I’m told is a non-voting member this year, but. and that’s a big but and no I’m not going there again!  I’m also told that he used to work for Yellen at the SF Fed.  So the thought here is that maybe he has an inside to Yellen. Anyway, Williams said that “it makes no sense to start raising rates in the 2nd Half of 2015, and that the Fed needs to keep rates well below the historic norm of 4% even into 2017.”   WOW! Now. in my best Andy Rooney voice. Ever Wonder why Bullard got all the press, and Williams not a mention?  I think you know what I’m saying here, so I’ll just move along, for these are not the droids we’re looking for! The euro lost about ¼-cent yesterday, and is flat this morning ahead of the European Central Bank (ECB) meeting, that’s taking place as I write. Remember last month when the markets were convinced that ECB President Draghi, would announce additional stimulus, and I said “hogwash”? Well, who was right then? That’s correct it was little old me! HA! Well, this month, there are still some naysayers to the Chuck way of thinking and they are standing still with their thoughts that additional stimulus is coming from the ECB. Again, I say hogwash! Not now, anyway! Things are not dire in the Eurozone, Germany, the Eurozone’s largest economy, is seeing their economy grow, unemployment drop, and exports remain high, so you have to take a flyer on the additional stimulus in my opinion. So, the weakness in the euro the past two days, will most likely be a thing of the past once we get through today’s ECB meeting. The recent data from the U.K. has really been disappointing, especially given the strength of the data leading up to recent reports. I kept telling you all that the U.K. was not that strong! The recent report that confirms weakness is back is the services data which was very disappointing.  And then good old Mark Carney, you know the new Bank of England Gov. and former Gov. of the Bank of Canada, he of the bag of promises that never get out of the bag, is seeing what I was seeing. Carney told a newspaper that “There’s slack in the labor market that needs to be used up before policy makers raise interest rates.”   So, the pound sterling backs off its previous lofty levels, that were falsely pumped higher by shaky data. And as usual, Chuck puts his kiss of death on a currency by talking glowingly about it. Yesterday morning, I told you all about the 6 month moves in the Indian rupee, only to see it get whacked overnight, on what Bloomberg calls “technicals”.  You know, when a currency reaches a certain point on a chart that tells traders that they need to sell.  Long time readers know me, and I’m not a chartist, but I believe that in conjunction with fundamentals they can be useful at times. This is one of those times that I don’t think they are useful. So, maybe this whacking  is a good opportunity to buy at cheaper levels than prior to the whacking! Man! I just felt the building move! The light standards overhead are swaying back and forth, it must be a real doozy of a storm outside! Talk about scary! You know when you’re sitting in a chair in a building and you feel like you need to reach for the Dramamine that things are getting weird.  OK. my phone just said there’s a tornado in the area and that I need to take shelter, I’m going to step away for a minute. In my best Arnold voice. I’ll be back! China tried to address the economic slowdown in the country by announcing that they will introduce a package of measures to support the economy. The package includes: railway spending and tax relief.  And in concert with that announcement, the Chinese also pushed their currency, the renminbi / yuan, down this morning. With the first couple of days this week showing the Chinese allowing appreciation of the renminbi / yuan once again, I thought maybe their “teaching the markets a lesson” was over, and we could get back to the task at hand, which is an appreciating renminbi / yuan. But I guess not!  I guess the lesson is not over! Another BRIC currency, the Brazilian real, saw some love yesterday after the Brazilian Central Bank (BCB) hiked rates again, this time 25 Basis Points (1/4%) to an internal Selic rate of 11%… Of course that’s nowhere near where deposits get paid interest, but the point is that rates moved higher again in Brazil, as inflation continues to be a real problem in the country. I would have to think that the BCB is getting pretty close to tying the rate hikes into a bow. So, the real might be left to its own devices. and left to my own devices I probably would.  No wait! Didn’t mean to go all Pet Shop Boys on you this morning! Well, yesterday the U.S. Data Cupboard was good to the economy by printing a stronger than expected Feb Factory Orders report. Factory Orders for Feb grew 1.6% VS a -.7% in January. I guess the “bad weather” that affected everything else in February wasn’t at play here, eh?  So, good for Factory Orders. Unfortunately, the New York regional manufacturing index fell from 57 to 52 in March.  The ADP Employment Change for March printed at 191,000 jobs created, missing the target of 195,000 but the miss was small, so for the folks at home keeping score, this was a good report. not great, but good. Today, we’ll see the Data Cupboard yield the Feb Trade Balance (read deficit!) The Usual Thursday Weekly Jobless Claims, and the Challenger Job Cuts year on year for March.  And then tomorrow is the day the markets have been waiting for. the Jobs Jamboree that will show once and for all that the previous months bad reports were damaged by bad weather! Well, that’s what the markets think so far. Well, before I head to the Big Finish, I wanted to comment on a story that hit my email box yesterday from the WSJ, stating that, “for the FIRST TIME within General Motors, executives will be told of vehicle safety problems when they are first reported.”    In the words of a local car dealer, Are you kidding me?  I just cringe when I hear stuff like this, don’t you? I mean going back to the tech scandals, Enron, and so on, until now, you have to question why, foreigners would look to buy U.S. assets given all these things that continue to be revealed.  Investors here in the U.S. have grown comfortably numb to the scandals and just keep buying.  Need I say more? For What It’s Worth. I need to do some building of this story first, so here we go. Long ago I read a book by Richard Duncan called “The Dollar Crisis”   It sealed my beliefs of the dollar’s future, and when many people over the years would ask me what book should they read to get them started, I would tell them about this book.  Since then I’ve read “The New Depression”  and “The Corruption of Capitalism”  by Richard Duncan. All well worth someone’s time to read.  So, seeing that my friend, Bill Bonner, quoted Richard Duncan yesterday certainly caught my eye and led me to relaying that quote to you this morning, dear reader! First of all I need to tell you about Bill Bonner’s new letter titled: Diary of a Rogue Economist.   And can be found by clicking: http://www.bonnerandpartners.com/category/dre/ And then Richard Duncan talking about QE. “Duncan expects the coming quarter to produce a record of excess liquidity. The Fed is still pumping liquidity into the market at the rate of $65 billion every month. Meanwhile, it is tax time, so the government’s needs for borrowing will be relatively low. And according to Duncan, the difference between the available liquidity and the need for it in the regular economy has to go somewhere. But after this quarter, the outlook changes. The Fed is scheduled to wind down QE by the end of the year. And the federal government’s rosy budget scenario will begin to fade – meaning more government borrowing. That means the third quarter is expected to produce only a slightly positive excess of liquidity. And in the fourth quarter, says Duncan, the excess turns into a shortage. If the Fed persists in its plans to taper QE, in other words, the third quarter will likely see a selloff in the US stock market. This will give the Fed’s forward guidance a kick in the rearward quarters. Instead of continuing to taper, the Fed will panic. Its entire theory of life… its philosophy… and its sacred religion will be challenged. In its view, credit, prices and stocks must ALWAYS go up. “ Chuck again..  I see that Richard Duncan is in line with my call that the tapering of QE will be stopped this year. To recap.  Fed Head James Bullard threw a cat among the pigeons yesterday by pushing the envelope on the timing of the first Fed rate hike. The markets are now taking this newfound feeling that interest rates in the U.S. are going up, to the currency and metals markets, and talking about narrowing rate differentials to the Antipodean currencies, and so on. Chuck believes this is all gobbledygook, but you have to let the kids play outside. Currencies today 4/3/14. American Style: A$ .9240, kiwi .8545, C$ .9080, euro 1.3765, sterling 1.6590, Swiss $1.1275, . European Style: rand 10.6455, krone 5.9835, SEK 6.5110, forint 223.15, zloty 3.0315, koruna 19.9510, RUB 35.55, yen 103.90, sing 1.2625, HKD 7.7575, INR 60.20, China 6.1520, pesos 13.12, BRL 2.2682, Dollar Index 80.25, Oil $99.20, 10-year 2.80%, Silver $19.79, Platinum $1,434.25, Palladium $785.25, and Gold. $1,282.80 That’s it for today. Well, yesterday was our Antione Lawrence’s birthday, and while I knew it before I started writing, I had a brain drain while writing. So, Happy Birthday Antione!  I want to thank Cheryl Harper and Jessica Witt, for baking me birthday cakes that were brought in yesterday. I’m always gone on my birthday, so these two got together and decided to bake me my fave cakes for when I returned. A Pineapple upside down cake, and German chocolate cake were so delicious! Then the desk sang Happy Birthday to me, even though it was Antione’s Birthday! I truly appreciate the attention for my birthday, that for the past 6 years I’ve looked forward to so much. Well, it appears that my beloved Cardinals left their bats with hits in them, in Florida, for they’ve only scratched out 8 hits in two games. UGH!  And thoughts and prayers are needed for the folks at Ft. Hood, where a 2nd shooting in past 5 years took place yesterday. So sad.  And with that, I’ll get out of your hair for today. I hope you have a Tub Thumpin’ Thursday! Chuck Butler President EverBank World Marketslast_img read more

Reports have surfaced that tout replacements to pl

first_img Reports have surfaced that tout replacements to platinum and/or palladium. However, these are mostly research projects and are at least two to three years away from commercial viability (some will never make it). It’s quite the dilemma. One of the major reasons we’re so bullish on platinum group metals—palladium, in particular—is because of the intractable problems with supply. But most of the producers are backed into corners, with few options for improving their outlook. There’s simply no way for these metals to avoid a long-term production deficit due to the deep-seated problems with the companies that produce them. So, how to invest? Since we’re talking about profiting from a metals bull market, we could just buy bullion—and we have indeed recommended doing so to our readers. But to really maximize your leverage to the upside (and avoid more risky futures and options), a stock in a company that produces the metal is normally the way to go. Unfortunately, as above, the pickings are slim. For us to invest in a PGM producer, the company would have to be: Outside of South Africa and Russia. The problems with miners in both countries are numerous and difficult. Making money. Many producers are not profitable at current prices because production costs are so high. And they won’t come down when the strikes end—they’ll go up, due to higher wages. Have a strong growth profile. We want a company that can capitalize on burgeoning demand, which would add further leverage to our investment. Have strong management (of course!). The last thing we want is a team with no experience navigating a volatile market such as this. Does such a stock exist? It’s a tall order, but it turns out that the answer is: Yes. The company we recommend in this area meets all the criteria above—and is the safest speculation in this space. We consider it so safe, in fact, that we just “graduated” it from the International Speculator to BIG GOLD. How’s This for Leverage? This profitable mid-tier producer is perfectly positioned: it’s not so small that we’re purely speculating on some uncertain game-changing event, and yet it’s small enough to generate much larger share price gains than would be possible for one of the major mining companies. On the other hand, it’s big enough to catch the attention of mainstream investors. Here are seven reasons why we’re excited about this company and the leverage we think we’ll get by owning shares… #1: Big, High-Grade Assets The company has two distinct but closely related mine sites. These alone will support the company’s growth for many years. However, only nine miles of an estimated 28 miles of known mineralization has been developed between them—essentially one-third of one giant mineralized structure. Management thinks it has an additional 102 million tonnes of undeveloped resources waiting to be dug up. And get this: the average grade of their proven and probable reserves is 0.45 ounces per tonne, the world’s highest-grade PGM deposit. Of these, 78% is palladium, a very attractive figure since we’re even more bullish on it than platinum. At the right metals prices, this company could double or triple production and still maintain a very long mine life. #2: Growing Production and Low Costs The company grew 2013 production by 10,000 ounces, but has yet to use all its milling capacity. It currently uses about 3,600 tonnes per day (tpd) of its 6,000 tpd total capacity. The company is working to increase ore production this year, which is good timing for us. With a much cleaner balance sheet and a forecast of $800-$850 per ounce for all-in sustaining costs (AISC) in 2014, the company looks poised to make money in the current price environment—and a lot of money in the supply squeeze we anticipate. #3: Recycling Business In addition to mining, this company recycles depleted catalyst materials to recover palladium, platinum, and rhodium at its smelter and base metal refinery. It’s been doing this since 1997, and business is booming. Pre-tax earnings last year rose a whopping 233% over 2012. And management says it will expand this end of their business over the next few years. #4: Strong Financial Performance This company reported over a billion dollars of revenue last year, up nearly 30% from 2012. It finished the year with a very strong working capital position of almost a half billion dollars. #5: Unique North American Operations The company is one of only a few PGM producers in North America. Nearly all other PGM mines operate in South Africa (Impala, Amplats, Lonmin, etc.) or Russia (Norilsk). Therefore, this company is more stable than most that mine in other jurisdictions. #6: Upgraded Management A prior management team made a poor investment in Argentina a few years back, which led to major changes in the board of directors and top management last year. The new president and CEO is a 21-year industry veteran and has experience in both M&A and mine optimization. He’s already corrected past mistakes, and we’re happy with the direction he’s taken the company. The technical people on the ground seem competent and are getting admirable results. And finally… #7: We’ve Been There! Our Chief Metals Investment Strategist Louis James conducted a due diligence trip to the company’s operations last year, and says: I liked the story when I visited and considered it to be the company to buy in a safe mining jurisdiction. But I didn’t want to bet on the team in place at the time. Flash forward and now it’s under new management, which is very focused on cutting costs and expanding the core business. The company’s results for 2013 were quite impressive, and I expect them to get better going forward. I’m convinced this company is uniquely positioned to benefit from potential supply shortages. Coupled with a likely rise in demand from the global auto industry in the years ahead and this stock is a very attractive play. Here’s a picture from his visit. Platinum demand in India is expected to grow 35% this year. The Russian government has been reportedly buying palladium from local producers, since it appears its stockpiles are near exhaustion. Exports ticked higher last month, but that was likely in anticipation of potential sanctions. Existing stockpiles of these metals have dwindled. Based on prior estimates from Citigroup, only nine weeks of palladium and 22 weeks of platinum supplies remain—and half of those are in Russia. Standard Bank projects that stockpiled material from South African producers will run out in a month or less. The key point is that platinum and palladium supply is in a structural deficit. Prices will pull back when the strikes end—and that is your opportunity. The bull market in these metals is really just getting underway. And we have the primo pick in the space. The shares of this stock would have to climb 50% just to match its 2011 highs—and that’s without the platinum/palladium supply crunch we’re speculating on. As you’ve surmised by now, I can’t give away the name of this stock in fairness to paid subscribers. But you can get it by giving BIG GOLD a risk-free try. You’ll receive our full analysis and specific buy guidance, along with an exclusive discount on a popular gold coin in the June issue. And, if you want the absolute safest way to invest in PGMs, check out the options recommended in the May issue of BIG GOLD. If you’re not 100% satisfied with the newsletter, simply cancel during the 3-month trial period for a full refund—no questions asked. Whatever you do though, don’t miss out on the best stock pick in the PGM bull market. Start your no-risk subscription to BIG GOLD right now. Holdings of physically backed palladium ETFs continue to hit record highs. In less than two months, a half million ounces were added to ETFs. Fund holdings will likely continue to climb and push the palladium market further into deficit. Pay dirt: this is what the company’s palladium-platinum mineralization looks like before blasting. You can see the closely spaced holes that will be blasted a fraction of a second before the surrounding ones—in successive waves—so the ore is blasted inward. This high-grade resource in a safe and stable jurisdiction is the heart of our speculation. The Only Stock to Buy, in a Market Backed into a Corner Johnson Matthey, the world’s leading authority on PGMs, estimates the platinum market will register a deficit of at least 1.2 million ounces this year. This would be the largest shortfall since it first compiled data in 1975. While it will take an enormous amount of time and expense to recover from the strikes in South Africa, that’s only the first layer of problems for the industry: According to consultancy GFMS, 300,000 ounces of platinum and 165,000 ounces of palladium could be lost after the strikes end, as it will take time and money to ramp up to full capacity—if that’s even possible since some mines have been damaged. The Implats CEO said it will take his company at least three months to return to full production, and they’ve already put the development of three new replacement shafts in the Rustenburg area on hold. Anglo American announced just last week that it plans to sell its platinum operations. Some recyclers announced they are holding back on sales, as they believe prices will move higher. Auto sales in the US, China, and Europe, the three biggest regions by consumption, were up 12% through May over 2013.last_img read more

As head of New York Citys correctional health ser

first_imgAs head of New York City’s correctional health services, Dr. Homer Venters spent nine years overseeing the care of thousands of inmates in the jails on Rikers Island. Though he left Rikers in 2017, what he witnessed on the job has stayed with him.”What’s important to consider about jail settings is that they are incredibly dehumanizing, and they dehumanize the individuals who pass through them,” Venters says. “There is not really a true respect for the rights of the detained.”Venters is now a senior health and justice fellow at Community Oriented Correctional Health Services. In his new book, Life and Death in Rikers Island, he describes a number of traumatic outcomes related to what he says was subpar medical care at the jail complex, including the death of Carlos Mercado, a man with diabetes who was denied insulin during the intake process.”This type of death really shows, in a very stark way, how jails confer health risk to people,” Venters says. “For a person to know that they are insulin-dependent — to report that and then for any state institution to fail to act on that, really puts the onus and responsibility for this man’s death directly on the jail system.”During his tenure at Rikers, Venters pushed to improve the electronic medical records system, allowing health data from the jail to be shared with outside agencies, including the Department of Justice. He sees it as a first step in a larger effort to address abusive conditions and improve inmate care.Working at Rikers, Venters says, “left me with a zeal to continue this work all over the country. … The problems of Rikers are in many cases the problems of jails and prisons everywhere in the United States.”Interview highlightsOn his first time at Rikers IslandI happened to go there for the first time on a day where there was a very strong snowstorm. As someone was showing me around some of the facilities, the snow was coming down so quickly it really did seem like a scene from a sci-fi movie. I couldn’t believe that the structures looming up one after the other were real. [And] the yelling coming out — the two biggest and most well-constructed facilities at the time on the island were these big buildings that look like hotels. But they were built for solitary confinement, so people [were] screaming and yelling out of those big structures, through this very thick snowfall. It left an indelible impression on me.On not being able to find patients who need medical care because of delays in paperwork and an antiquated paper logging systemPatients would be moved from one housing area to another, and sometimes their move would be updated a couple of days later. Somebody would have to type it into a computer system. But it would mostly be updated on a paper-based log. Since I left they’ve started implementing some wristbands that could be scanned, but it’s the same problem — an officer has to do something, [and] you have to affirmatively track it.So for us with a big health service — thousands of patients on medications every single day — we had pharmacy technicians, psychologists [and] nurses who were working hard just to find the patients who had missed medicines — who could be facing a life-threatening event if they miss that medicine. It was so routine that we couldn’t find our patients that there was no thought that we could find everybody who didn’t get their medicine today. But we would make short lists of the people who missed medicines that were what we would call “life-sustaining medicines,” or who could face a very dire health outcome, and that expenditure of energy for that purpose would become revealed when patients had very bad outcomes.On tracking data about inmates sustaining injuries from correctional officersOne data point that’s really incredible to consider is that there was a time when, if an adolescent was in a violent conflict with someone in Rikers Island, if the conflict was with a correctional officer they were more likely to sustain a blow to the head than if the conflict was with another inmate. It’s stunning, because obviously correctional officers have enormous amounts of training about avoiding blows to the head. … And also you would think that most inmate fights start with a shot to the head. But that data point alone … we could only do because we had developed this injury surveillance system. But it was one of many that we pushed to the D.O.J.On what data revealed about solitary confinementThe other big data set that we found very, very helpful is we did a large-scale analysis — I think the first-ever large scale analysis — of exposure to solitary confinement. We looked at 225,000 jail admissions and we found that the people … exposed to solitary confinement had about seven times higher risk of being a self-harm cohort. That is to say, to physically harm themselves. That data set … helped us really push the Department of Corrections to move from wanting more solitary confinement for mentally ill people, to actually eliminate the practice of solitary confinement for persons with serious mental illness.On the conditions of solitary confinement units, where raw sewage often overflows because of clogged toiletsIt is horrific but also dehumanizing. It really reflects quite well the end result of the practice of solitary confinement. That is to say, you have officers trying to act as if they are conducting normal business. You have patients with mental health problems who are decompensating [– functionally deteriorating under the stress –] or simply doing extreme things to try and get out of there. You have health staff coming on and off those units as quickly as they can, because while they want to protect their patients, they also are seeing this day after day after day. …I’ve been inside these cells to talk to patients multiple times when they’ve smeared feces all over the inside of the cell. Or they’re working to light a fire inside their cell. It’s just very, very extreme behaviors and any one of these observations should be enough to reaffirm that this is a horrible practice– that we should have never built this unit and we need to back away from its use everywhere.On if he believes Rikers Island should closeThe closing of Rikers is absolutely necessary. It’s not sufficient to transform the criminal justice system in New York City to become more humane, but it’s necessary. The jails that are in operation are crumbling. If you’re a correctional officer, almost anywhere you work, any housing area, any hallway, any intake pen is so dilapidated and falling apart that inmates easily can arm themselves — and do for their own protection — with bits of hardened material that are broken off from walls; from pipes; from ceilings.I think the other important element to this is that we have much more work to do to lower the jail population. We’ve made great strides in New York City, more than most big cities have. There were probably [22,000 to] 23,000 people in the jails when [Rudolph] Giuliani was mayor. It’s now under 8,000, so really incredible progress. But there is much more work that can be done to create alternatives that involve treatment for people with serious mental illness, and also to really develop supportive housing, which is an important element to why people cycle in and out of jail. [There’s] a lack of stable housing. [Housing] can also involve treatment for addiction and for mental health problems.Roberta Shorrock and Seth Kelley produced and edited the audio of this interview. Bridget Bentz and Molly Seavy-Nesper adapted it for Shots. Copyright 2019 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.last_img read more

What sounds like music to us may just be noise to

first_imgWhat sounds like music to us may just be noise to a macaque monkey.That’s because a monkey’s brain appears to lack critical circuits that are highly sensitive to a sound’s pitch, a team reported Monday in the journal Nature Neuroscience.The finding suggests that humans may have developed brain areas that are sensitive to pitch and tone in order to process the sounds associated with speech and music.”The macaque monkey doesn’t have the hardware,” says Bevil Conway, an investigator at the National Institutes of Health. “The question in my mind is, what are the monkeys hearing when they listen to Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony?”The study began with a bet between Conway and Sam Norman-Haignere, who was a graduate student at the time.Norman-Haignere, who is now a postdoctoral researcher at Columbia University, was part of a team that found evidence that the human brain responds to a sound’s pitch.”I was like, well if you see that and it’s a robust finding you see in humans, we’ll see it in monkeys,” Conway says.But Norman-Haignere thought monkey brains might be different.”Honestly, I wasn’t sure,” Norman-Haignere says. “I mean that’s usually a sign of a good experiment, you know, when you don’t know what the outcome is.”So the two scientists and several colleagues used a special type of MRI to monitor the brains of six people and five macaque monkeys as they listened to a range of sounds through headphones.Some of the sounds were more like music, where changes in pitch are obvious.Other sounds were more like noise.And Conway says it didn’t take long to realize he’d lost his bet.”In humans you see this beautiful organization, pitch bias, and it’s clear as day,” Conway says. In monkeys, he says, “we see nothing.”That surprised Conway because his own research had shown that the two species are nearly identical when it comes to processing visual information.”When I look at something, I’m pretty sure that the monkey is seeing the same thing that I’m seeing,” he says. “But here in the auditory domain it seems fundamentally different.”The study didn’t try to explain why sounds would be processed differently in a human brain. But one possibility involves our exposure to speech and music.”Both speech and music are highly complex structured sounds,” Norman-Haignere says, “and it’s totally plausible that the brain has developed regions that are highly tuned to those structures.”That tuning could be the result of “something in our genetic code that causes those regions to develop the way they are and to be located where they are,” Norman-Haignere says.Or, he says, it could be that these brain regions develop as children listen to music and speech.Regardless, subtle changes in pitch and tone seem to be critical when people want to convey emotion,” Conway says.”You can know whether or not I’m angry or sad or questioning or confused, and you can get almost all of that meaning just from the tone,” he says. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more

Google unveils its Container Engine Google is allo

first_imgGoogle unveils its Container EngineGoogle is allowing developers to run and manage their Docker containers on its cloud platform’s virtual machine with the release of Container Engine. Container Engine is based on the open-source Kubernetes project, and runs on the company’s Compute Engine VMs to provide an efficient way to build container-based apps.“Because it uses the open-source project, it also offers a high level of workload mobility, making it easy to move applications between development machines, on-premise systems, and public cloud providers,” wrote Brian Stevens, VP of product management at Google, on the company’s blog. “Container-based applications can run anywhere, but the combination of fast booting, efficient VM hosts and seamless virtualized network integration make Google Cloud Platform the best place to run them.”In addition, Google also announced the beta version of its Managed VMs, which now has auto-scaling support, Cloud SDK integration, and support for runtimes built on Docker containers. Mozilla teams up with GSMAMozilla and the mobile operator trade body GSMA are partnering to develop non-English content for the Web. According them, 55.8% of online content is in English, but only 5% of the world’s population speaks it as a first language.“If the industry continues on its current path, we will have a broadly connected but less empowered Web citizenry,” the organizations wrote in a white paper. “Even if operators keep investing in network capacity, and even if handset costs will continue to drop, the next billion users will find a less welcoming content landscape, which is effectively closed to their contributions except for a handful of private content silos.”In addition, Mozilla will launch a mobile content-authoring system, Mozilla Webmaker, to allow anyone with a smartphone to create content for the Web.last_img read more

Content provided by SD Times and ConnectALL

first_imgContent provided by SD Times and ConnectALL Value Stream Management is a way to manage what your organization is doing to ensure you’re optimizing business value while eliminating costly waste from your development and delivery processes. It’s part of today’s digital transformation.“Right now, everybody’s in this digital disruption,” said Lance Knight, SVP and GM at Value Stream integration provider ConnectALL. “How important was it 30 years ago, that IT worked right? It was kind of important, but today it’s paramount. CIOs are now getting a seat at the table. They’re differentiators.”RELATED CONTENT: The realities of value stream managementA guide to VSM toolsGently down the value streamTo gain efficiencies and deliver greater value, you have to first see how your organization is functioning. And the only way to assess that is through the use of data. But what data?Today, most organizations use measurements, metrics and KPIs to gain efficiencies in how they work, with one of the critical outcomes being IT predictability. Organizations can make better decisions about embarking on strategic initiatives and the time it will take to implement if they know that IT is predictable. But Knight argues that many of those companies are getting it wrong.“If I don’t have predictable IT to deliver, and I can’t get predictable until I have metrics, and I’m not going to get metrics until I have the right measurements, that’s where value stream starts to play,” he said. “That’s where the true impact comes in at the higher levels.”Measurements, Knight explained, are snapshots in time. It tells you how long it took you to do one thing once. Metrics and KPIs are the averaging of repeated measurements over time. A KPI (key performance indicator) is what organizations use to gauge their success — organizationally, departmentally, by project and by team.Using an example from industry, Knight said: “Let’s say a defect comes in and it takes 10 days to fix that defect and deploy it into production. That just tells me it took 10 days for that one defect fix. What amplifies the issue is everything that comes into the system of delivery are of different sizes. It’s always going to be a different measurement. It’s considering the time to fix a defect in aggregate that makes me more predictable, not that one time it took me to fix the defect. It’s the variance and 80 percentile that are useful. Those are the metrics to me. The measures are just that, individual measurements.” “Then,” he continued, “I can use that 80th percentile of completion time, or the KPI, to inform my efforts to become more predictable. Using appropriate metrics helps me take into account all the different sizes of work that go through my system. But nobody’s talking about that; they’re talking about the measurement.”Once you have the metrics, you can see the impact of your organizational efforts on delivering value, and you can take action based on a metric. You can’t take action on a measurement. Take wait time. Say an issue comes into the backlog and sits there for a long period of time. The organization can improve that wait time by taking it out of the backlog and deprioritizing it, or they can move smaller issues out of backlog faster by letting the bigger, non-priority items sit. “So I can say, traditionally, this team has a high defect ratio. That would be a metric to me,” Knight said. “What are they doing wrong? Now we can go in and look at that with a subjective point of view, of ‘I’m trying to help them. Maybe they have the wrong skills; maybe the team is misaligned.’ You can start to take action on the metrics.”Using metrics also allows organizations to actually measure if they’re improving their processes. Removing waste will show a decrease in time to deliver and the average time to deliver will improve. But, without metrics, if you remove that piece of waste, you only get a measurement that says it has taken less time to deliver. From that, an organization could extrapolate that it’s improving its processes, but there is no measurable proof that it has had that impact.Then there are KPIs. Having looked at its systems and making changes against metrics that have been collected, an organization can, for example, see that its throughput has increased by 10 percent. That is a KPI. From there, the organization can look in and see that more defects are coming back, and further see that is the result of a new team using better testing practices and catching more problems.Knight said, “It’s going to take me a variable amount of time to fix individual defects. But perhaps I come up with a quicker process for finding the defects, which results in faster remediation. I’ve found a different way, a better way to do that.. So you use metrics to understand and improve your processes.”And that’s what value stream integration does to make you more predictable.last_img read more

The Fall TV Season presentations for all the new n

first_imgThe Fall TV Season presentations for all the new network shows take place this week with the first announced today. Here’s a full breakdown of which concepts have made the final list over on NBC. NBC has a slight lead in the 18-49 demo with Live+7 viewership and the Peacock is betting big on comedy with four new shows, two of which will premiere this Fall. Key announcements this year – “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” is getting at least 13 episodes for a seventh season second for NBC which will start early next year along with more “Will & Grace”. It’s highly likely that, much like this season, that episode number order will increase. Additionally “Blindspot” is scoring one last season with those final episodes returning mid-season. Here’s the full breakdown: Bluff City Law Drama, 10pm Mondays Sydney Strait used to work at her father Elijah’s celebrated law firm until their tumultuous relationship got in the way. After barely speaking to him for years, Sydney is suddenly thrust back into the family fold when her philanthropist mother passes away unexpectedly. The father asks Sydney to rejoin his firm. She agrees despite her lingering resentment and distrust. Cast: Jimmy Smits, Caitlin McGee, Scott Shepherd, Barry Sloane, Michael Luwoye, MaameYaa Boafo, Stony Blyden and Jayne Atkinson Producers: Dean Georgaris, David Janollari, Michael Aguliar Council of Dads Drama, Mid-Season When Scott, a loving father of four, has his entire life’s plan thrown into upheaval by a cancer diagnosis, he calls on a few of his closest allies to step in as back-up dads for every stage of his growing family’s life. These men agree to devote themselves to supporting and guiding Scott’s amazing family through all the triumphs and challenges life has to offer – just in case he ever can’t be there to do so himself. Cast: Sarah Wayne Callies, Clive Standen, Tom Everett Scott, J. August Richards, Blue Chapman, Emjay Anthony, Michele Weaver, Thalia Tran, Steven Silver, Michael O’Neill Producers: Jerry Bruckheimer, Jonathan Littman, KristieAnne Reed, James Oh, Bruce Feiler Lincoln Drama, Mid-Season Inspired by the best-selling book “The Bone Collector,” former NYPD detective and forensic genius Lincoln Rhyme was at the top of his game until a serious accident at the hands of a notorious serial killer forces him out of the field. When Amelia Sachs, an intuitive young officer who’s got her own gift for profiling finds herself hot on the killer’s trail, Rhyme in turn finds a partner for this new game of cat and mouse. Cast: Russell Hornsby, Arielle Kebbel, Brían F. O’Byrne, Tate Ellington, Courtney Grosbeck, Ramses Jimenez, Brooke Lyons, Roslyn Ruff and Michael Imperioli Producers: VJ Boyd, Mark Bianculli, Seth Gordon, Avi Nir, Peter Traugott and Rachel Kaplan Zoe’s Extraordinary Playlist Drama, Mid-Season In this joyous and celebratory drama, Zoey Clarke is a whip-smart computer coder forging her way in San Francisco. After an unusual event she starts to hear the innermost wants and desires of the people around her through songs. At first, she questions her own sanity but soon realizes this unwanted curse may just be an incredibly wonderful gift. Cast: Jane Levy, Skylar Astin, Peter Gallagher, Alex Newell, John Clarence Stewart, Carmen Cusack and Mary Steenburgen. Producers: Richard Shepard, Paul Feig, Jessie Henderson, Kim Tannenbaum, Eric Tannenbaum, David Blackman, Daniel Inkeles Indebted Comedy, Mid-Season Young parents Dave and Rebecca are ready to reclaim their life after years of diapers and sleepless nights. However, things take an unexpected turn when Dave’s parents show up unannounced and broke, leaving Dave with no choice but to open the door to the people who gave him everything. But these boomerang parents aren’t great with boundaries. Cast: Adam Pally, Abby Elliott, Steven Weber and Fran Drescher. Producers: Dan Levy, Doug Robinson The Kenan Show Comedy, Mid-Season In this family comedy, Kenan Thompson strives to be a super dad to his two adorable girls while simultaneously balancing his job and a father-in-law who “helps” in the most inappropriate ways. Cast: Kenan Thompson, Punam Patel, Dani Lockett, Dannah Lockett and Andy Garcia. Producers: Jackie Clarke, Chris Rock, Kenan Thompson, Lorne Michaels and Andrew Singer Perfect Harmony Comedy, 8:30pm Thursdays Bradley Whitford plays former Princeton music professor Arthur Cochran who unexpectedly stumbles into choir practice at a small-town church and finds a group of singers that are out of tune in more ways than one. Despite the ultimate clash of sensibilities, Arthur and his newfound cohorts may just be the perfect mix of individuals to help each other reinvent and rediscover a little happiness, just when they all need it most. Cast: Bradley Whitford, Anna Camp, Tymberlee Hill, Rizwan Manji, Will Greenberg, Geno Segers and Spencer Allport. Producers: Lesley Wake Webster, Jason Winer, Bradley Whitford, Adam Anders and Jon Radler Sunnyside Comedy, 9:30pm Thursdays The youngest New York City Councilman ever, Garrett Modi was was rubbing elbows with the political elite, attending star-studded parties and was the pride of Queens. But a downward spiral got him busted for public intoxication and ended his career. Now, Garrett’s crashing with his sister, Mallory, and wondering where it all went wrong. That is, until he’s hired by a diverse group of hopefuls who dream of becoming American citizens and believe he can help – giving him a new sense of purpose and a chance for redemption> Cast: Kal Penn, Kiran Deol, Moses Storm, Diana Maria Riva, Joel Kim Booster, Samba Schutte, Poppy Liu. Producers: Kal Penn, Matt Murray, Michael Schur, David Miner, Dan Spilo The nightly NBC schedule will be as follows: MONDAY 8pm: “The Voice” 10pm: “Bluff City Law” TUESDAY 8pm: “The Voice” 9pm: “This Is Us” 10pm: “New Amsterdam” WEDNESDAY 8pm: “Chicago Med” 9pm: “Chicago Fire” 10pm: “Chicago P.D.” THURSDAY 8pm: “Superstore” 8:30pm: “Perfect Harmony” 9pm: “The Good Place” 9:30pm: “Sunnyside” 10pm: “Law & Order: SVU” FRIDAY 8pm: “The Blacklist” 9pm: “Dateline” SATURDAY 8pm: “Dateline Saturday Night Mystery” 10pm: “Saturday Night Live” Classic encores SUNDAY 7pm: “Football Night in America” 8:20pm: “NBC Sunday Night Football” TBD 2019/2020 “Blindspot,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Council of Dads,” “Good Girls,” “Indebted,” “The Kenan Show,” “Lincoln,” “Manifest,” “Will & Grace,” “Zoe’s Extraordinary Playlist” FATE UNDETERMINED “Abby’s,” “A.P. Bio,” “The Enemy Within,” “The Village” CANCELLATIONS/ENDED “I Feel Bad,” “Marlon,” “Midnight, Texas,” “Reverie,” “Trial & Error”last_img read more

Disabled activists are calling on the Department f

first_imgDisabled activists are calling on the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to release secret reports which could prove whether it has been engaging in a propaganda campaign to demonise disabled people in the media.DWP has told Disability News Service (DNS) that it will not release documents compiled by its own communications department that describe the impact of its briefings to the media on disability benefit reform.DWP initially denied that any such documents existed, but DNS has discovered that a monthly report is compiled describing the impact of its press releases and other media briefings.These reports could reveal how DWP has briefed mainstream newspapers – including the Daily Mail, the Sun and the Daily Express – on its social security reforms, and how it judged their subsequent coverage.Disabled activists and opposition politicians have repeatedly raised concerns that ministers or civil servants have briefed newspapers in a way that encourages them to report inaccurate and misleading articles with headlines such as “75 per cent of incapacity claimants are fit to work” and “Disabled benefit? Just fill in a form”.After DNS lodged a freedom of information request in August, asking “whether the department keeps a record of which actions by DWP communications have led to the publication of welfare stories that appear in the media”, DWP initially insisted that no such reports existed.It also denied keeping any record of complaints the department made about social security-based news stories that have appeared in national newspapers over the last five years.Following a fresh request by DNS on 19 September – after discovering a reference to monthly impact reports on a former press officer’s social media profile – DWP has now admitted that it does hold “some of the information” DNS is seeking.But it is now claiming an exemption under the Freedom of Information Act because, it says, releasing the information would “prejudice the commercial interests” of both DWP and “third parties”.DNS has asked DWP to review this decision, and plans to appeal to the Information Commissioner if it does not release the reports.A spokesman for Disabled People Against Cuts said: “It is very much in the public interest to know the extent to which the DWP have been engaging in a propaganda campaign to demonise disabled people in the media.“We already have evidence that this has and is taking place, and we require full disclosure – nothing less is acceptable.”A DWP spokeswoman appeared to suggest that the two FoI requests had asked for different information – which was why DNS was originally told such documents did not exist – and insisted that it did not hold a record of “DWP communications” work*.Asked what the commercial interests were that would be damaged by releasing the reports, she said: “You’ve already asked for a review into this [freedom of information] response.“You will receive the appropriate response once the correct processes have been followed.”And asked if the reports would show that the department had been engaging in a campaign to stir up hostility towards disabled people in the media in order to justify government cuts and reforms to disability benefits, she said: “We disagree with the premise of this question.“DWP press office and communications directorate is proud of the work we do to promote the interests of disabled people.“We promote schemes such as Access to Work, and through our Disability Confident campaign we have helped to dispel myths about employing disabled people and have highlighted the valuable contribution they make to the workplace.“We are particularly proud of our recent work with campaigning groups to persuade the Premier League to make all their stadia accessible by August 2017.”DWP has been the subject of a string of complaints from disabled activists and politicians over its communications with the media over the last five years.In 2011, work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith was criticised by the work and pensions select committee for “pandering to the Daily Mail” and sending out misleading press releases about incapacity benefit reform.Duncan Smith protested then that he was unable to control how the media covered welfare reform stories, but promised DWP would improve the way it dealt with statistics on disability benefits.Just 24 hours later, he provided quotes to selected news organisations – including the Mail – suggesting that thousands of disabled people were receiving disability living allowance they were not entitled to.In 2013, Esther McVey, at the time the Conservative minister for disabled people, claimed in the Mail on Sunday that coalition plans to abolish working-age DLA had led to a huge increase in applications by people desperate to claim the benefit before it was replaced by the new personal independence payment.The article talked of an “extraordinary ‘closing-down sale’ effect, with rocketing claims as people rush to get their hands on unchecked ‘welfare for life’ before McVey’s axe falls on April 8”.But the interview was based on government figures which actually showed the number of working-age claimants fell by more than 1,600 in the relevant three-month period.The following week, Duncan Smith repeated the claims, even though his department had been alerted to McVey’s use of the misleading figures.And last year, the disabled Tory peer Lord [Chris] Holmes, who heads the equality watchdog’s disability committee, was asked by members of the all-party parliamentary disability group if the hostile rhetoric of his party’s ministers had helped fuel hate crime.Ministers have repeatedly blamed the tabloid press for whipping up hostility towards disabled benefit claimants, and insist that they have done everything they can to “stop the rumour mill”.*By 9pm this evening (19 November), DWP had not been able to clarify how these two requests were differentlast_img read more

A note from the editor Please consider making a v

first_imgA note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS… Disabled activists have called for a boycott of the UK’s first accessible shopping day because of its close links with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and fears that CCTV footage could be used to dispute disability benefit claims.Purple, the social enterprise formerly known as Essex Coalition of Disabled People, has secured the support of DWP for next week’s Purple Tuesday event but has denied that there is any “hidden agenda”.Tuesday’s (13 November) event has also secured at least 14 high-profile partners, including retailers M&S, Sainsbury’s, Asda and Argos, and shopping centre owners such as intu and Landsec.One of the partners, intu – which owns and runs shopping centres across the country – today (Thursday) refused to promise not to pass CCTV footage from the event to DWP, while Sainsbury’s has refused to answer questions.Purple is hoping to engage with another 500 retailers across the country, all of which will be asked to make at least one pledge to improve the experience of their disabled customers and show a video to their staff that describes five ways they can improve their customer service for disabled people.But Disability Labour, which represents disabled people who are members of the Labour party – but is independent of the party itself – has called for a boycott of the event.It has raised fears that those companies taking part could pass CCTV pictures from the day to DWP to use against disabled people who have made benefit claims.It highlighted how Sainsbury’s has previously admitted that it occasionally passes CCTV pictures to DWP.Fran Springfield, co-chair of Disability Labour, said: “Disability Labour are deeply concerned that the DWP, which harasses and persecutes disabled people on a daily basis, will use video footage to identify if claimants are shopping, what they’re purchasing and even how far they are walking.”She said the potential of retailers sharing CCTV from the event with DWP was a “huge concern” for disabled people.Springfield said: “I don’t trust DWP any further than I can throw them because of the way they have treated people.”She said Disability Labour was “dismayed” at the involvement of retailers in the campaign.Kathy Bole, co-vice chair of Disability Labour, said: “Sainsbury’s already has form in relation to sharing CCTV footage to spy on disabled benefit claimants.“Their surveillance of disabled people has led to increased distress and isolation.”Disabled People Against Cuts said it supported Disability Labour’s concerns because it had been told of a small number of cases in which disabled people had lost their entitlement to benefits in transferring from disability living allowance to personal independence payment after being found to be “able to go shopping in their wheelchairs”.Mike Adams (pictured), chief executive of Purple, said he was concerned that the boycott would “frighten the living daylights” out of retailers who had been prepared to “put their head above the parapet” and support the Purple Tuesday campaign.He said: “If I had hands, I would throw them up in the air.“I do understand the concerns and I do understand the worries that there might be a hidden agenda. There really, really isn’t.”Purple Tuesday was a “totally independent campaign initiative”, he said, which had received “not one penny” from DWP.He said: “I am frustrated because I thought we had been absolutely clear that this is not government-led or involved or paid for in any shape or form.“There is no agenda. This is absolutely about getting disabled people to be seen as customers and making sure that retailers are aware and understand how you can improve the shopping experience of disabled people.“I would urge them to seriously rethink the boycott. I think it is counter-productive to what we are trying to achieve.”He said there had “never been any conversations” about the sharing of CCTV footage and that “absolutely nothing” DWP had said had led him to believe that it would be using CCTV from the event as evidence to use against benefit claimants.More than 80 per cent of Purple’s board are disabled people, and the organisation provides training for employers, and works with disabled people to find jobs, recruit personal assistants and manage their direct payments.Adams said Purple Tuesday was “an initiative that has been crafted, created, coordinated and delivered by a disability organisation”.He said Purple Tuesday was about awareness-raising on the day itself, but also about “what then happens for the following 365 days”, while a call had gone out to disabled people to describe their “good and bad” retail experiences.He added: “I think it is incredibly important that society understands and sees disabled people as real valued people who have money to spend and who deserve by absolute default a right to a good customer experience.“It is my view that if businesses improve their customer services, more disabled people will spend their money with them, and that will drive business to want to reflect in their workforce their consumer base.“That is an approach that I am hoping will start to really make inroads into some of the inequality… on employment, education, well-being.“I think it goes hand-in-hand with the work that we do to support disabled people on a day-to-day basis.”DWP said that any claims that it would use CCTV footage from the event as evidence that disabled people were not eligible for certain benefits were “categorically untrue”.A DWP spokeswoman said: “We have not provided funding to Purple but we have worked closely with them to facilitate Purple Tuesday and ensure it is a success.”Sainsbury’s had refused to comment on the boycott call by 1pm today (Thursday), and also refused to say if it had ever shared CCTV footage with DWP to use as evidence to justify rejecting a benefit claim.It also refused to promise that it would not share such footage from Purple Tuesday with DWP.An intu spokesman said: “Purple is one of many different organisations we work with in order to identify new ways to improve our physical spaces, customer service and employee support, so that we can ensure intu shopping centres are accessible destinations for all.“We are unaware of any links between Purple Tuesday and the DWP and we think it would be a shame if the event is boycotted because of the valuable insight and awareness it is creating for this important cause.“Like other organisations, intu is governed by current legislation which means that we would only share CCTV footage with individuals and public authorities in line with GDPR [data protection] requirements and under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000.“These requests are always fully scrutinised in line with current legislation.”But he refused to pledge that intu would not pass CCTV footage from Purple Tuesday to DWP.An M&S spokeswoman said the retailer had “never shared CCTV footage with the DWP to use as evidence to justify rejecting a benefit claim”.She added: “As we don’t share footage with the DWP, we won’t do it on Purple Tuesday.”She said: “Purple Tuesday is a great opportunity to increase awareness and understanding of the challenges our disabled customers face so that we can improve the shopping experience for them.“The accessibility of our stores and website is extremely important to us and we’re delighted to support it.”A Landsec spokeswoman said the company “would not share any CCTV with the DWP, unless we were served with a court order to do so”.She added: “Landsec is committed to making its retail destinations as accessible as possible, for the sole reason that we believe in creating spaces which everyone is able to enjoy equally.“While we recognise that, for the retail industry, Purple Tuesday is a move in the right direction, rather than a complete solution, we’re pleased to be able to raise awareness of the importance of disability access.”last_img read more

Augmedix the Google Glass App for Medical Data Entry Raises 16 Million

first_img The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. Carly Okyle Startup Funding –shares Apply Now » Assistant Editor, Contributed Content Augmedix, the Google Glass App for Medical Data Entry, Raises $16 Million Google Glass may no longer be the shiny, new thing that every developer in Silicon Valley wants to play with, but it’s still attracting investor attention.A San Francisco-based startup called Augmedix, which aims to “rehumanize” health care through Google Glass, today raised $16 million in Series A funding. The company’s Glass-based platform assists doctors with data entry, thus freeing them up for more time with patients. The platform extracts information from the audio-visual of a doctor’s conversation with a patient and uses it to update electronic health records in real time. It also allows doctors to verbally call up a patient’s records or test results.Related: How This Google Glass Startup Is Saving Doctors TimeAlthough other companies have backed away from the much-anticipated and little-used wearable tech platform, Augmedix has rolled out deployments in 10 states throughout the country. The money will allow the company to continue its work and perhaps add to its roster of 100-plus employees.The money for this round of funding comes from DCM , Emergence Capital Partners and Great Oaks Venture Capital. In June of last year, the company raised $7.3 million.Augmedix now has a valuation close to $100 million, according to CEO Ian Shakil.  Related: OK, Explorers: A New Version of Google Glass Is Coming Next Year  center_img 2 min read 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Next Article January 12, 2015 Add to Queuelast_img read more

Amazon Is Getting Ready to Publish Its First Batch of Crowdsourced EBooks

first_imgKindle Scout Guest Writer Next Article February 24, 2015 Last fall, Amazon introduced a platform to let the crowd choose books for publication. Now the first batch of those books are about to make their debut.Applying the upvote Reddit model to publishing, the Kindle Scout program allows readers to vote on their favorite excerpts from potential e-books over a 30-day open voting period; Amazon publishes the ones that generate the most positive response.Today, the company has announced that the first 10 books selected via this literary version of a popularity contest will be published on March 3, with preorders beginning today. Genre-wise, it’s a mixed bag, including steamy romance (A Highland Knight’s Desire), science fiction (Pit Bulls vs Aliens), mystery (Unpaved Surfaces) and thriller novels (Running From the Past). The books will be available only on Kindle.Related: Amazon Releases Small Army of New Kindles and E-ReadersWhile Amazon’s Kindle Scout publishing program depends on the consensus from the crowd, top-contenders also have to pass muster with a dedicated Kindle Scout team that sifts through popular titles and ultimately makes the final decision on what gets published and what doesn’t. The whole process takes no longer than 45 days from submission to selection.Selected authors are awarded a 5-year renewable publishing deal, a $1,500 advance, 50 percent royalties on ebook sales, and the option to take back the digital publishing rights if the book doesn’t earn them at least $25,000 over a five-year-period.As 50 Shades of Grey decisively proved, well-written novels typically favored by publishing houses and stories that capture the public’s imagination in powerful (and lucrative) way don’t always overlap, so it will be interesting to see if this program will be able to unearth the next cultural (if not necessarily literary) sensation. Related: 5 Secrets to Recognizing an Industry Ripe for Disruption The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. Amazon Is Getting Ready to Publish Its First Batch of Crowdsourced E-Books Apply Now » Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List Image credit: Kindle Scout –shares Add to Queue 2 min read Laura Entislast_img read more

Fitbit employees charged with having stolen trade secrets

first_img Jawbone files second lawsuit against rival Fitbit 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. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. Explore further An indictment filed Thursday in federal court in Northern California says the employees received the stolen trade secrets after leaving Jawbone and knew they were not supposed to have them.Both companies made fitness tracking devices and tussled over patents in court. Jawbone’s parent company, AliphCom, Inc., is no longer in business.A Fitbit spokesman says a judge in a related case found that no Jawbone trade secrets were misappropriated or used in any Fitbit product, feature or technology. U.S. prosecutors have charged one current and five former employees of San Francisco-based Fitbit, Inc. with possessing trade secrets stolen from rival company Jawbone. Citation: Fitbit employees charged with having stolen trade secrets (2018, June 15) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-06-fitbit-employees-stolen-secrets.htmllast_img read more

NASA Set To Launch a DeepSpace Atomic Clock Tonight

first_img How NASA’s Mars 2020 Rover Will Work (Infographic) Related: This Is What 2 Dozen Satellites Look Like Packed for Launch on a SpaceX Falcon Heavy But how does it work? Astronomers already use clocks to navigate in space. They send a signal to the spacecraft, which sends it back to Earth. The time of that round trip tells scientists the spacecraft’s distance from Earth. That’s because the signal is traveling at the speed of light, so armed with the time it took to go to the spacecraft and back, finding distance is but a simple calculation away. By sending multiple signals over time, scientists can calculate a spacecraft’s trajectory — both where it was and where it’s going. But in order to know a spacecraft’s location within a small margin of error, astronomers need very precise clocks that can measure billionths of a second, according to NASA. They also need clocks that are extremely stable. “Stability” here refers to how consistently a clock measures a unit of time. While you’d think that clocks always measure the same length of time as a “second,” clocks have a tendency to drift and slowly mark longer and longer times as a “second.” For measuring the locations of spacecrafts in distant space, astronomers need their atomic clocks to be consistent to better than a billionth of a second over days and weeks. Modern clocks, from those we wear on our wrists to those used on satellites, most often keep time using a quartz crystal oscillator. These take advantage of the fact that quartz crystals vibrate at a precise frequency when voltage is applied to them, NASA said in the statement. The vibrations act like the pendulum in a grandfather clock. But, by the standards of space navigation, quartz crystal clocks aren’t very stable at all. After six weeks, they may be off by a full millisecond, which translates at the speed of light to 185 miles (300 kilometers). That much error would have a huge impact on measuring the position of a fast-moving spacecraft, NASA said. Atomic clocks combine quartz crystal oscillators with certain types of atoms to create better stability. NASA’s Deep Space Atomic Clock will use mercury atoms and be off by less than a nanosecond after four days and less than a microsecond after 10 years. It would take 10 million years for the clock to be wrong by a whole second, according to NASA. Related: A NASA Atomic Clock on SpaceX’s Next Falcon Heavy Will Pioneer Deep-Space Travel Tech It may not be surprising to learn that atomic clocks take advantage of the structure of atoms, which are composed of a nucleus of protons and neutrons surrounded by electrons. The atoms of each element have a distinct structure, with a different number of protons in the nucleus. While the number of electrons each type of atom has can vary, the electrons occupy distinct energy levels, and a jolt of exactly the right amount of energy can cause an electron to jump to a higher energy level around the nucleus. The energy required to make an electron do this jump is unique to each element and consistent to all atoms of that element. “The fact that the energy difference between these orbits is such a precise and stable value is really the key ingredient for atomic clocks,” Eric Burt, an atomic clock physicist at JPL, said in the statement. “It’s the reason atomic clocks can reach a performance level beyond mechanical clocks.” Humans To Mars? Here’s What We’ll NeedDava Newman, NASA Deputy Administrator, explains how solar-electric propulsion, deep space atomic clocks, spacesuits, and laser communication are key technologies for humans to explore Mars and beyond.Credit: NASAVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9接下来播放Better Bug Sprays?01:33关闭选项Automated Captions – en-US facebook twitter 发邮件 reddit 链接https://www.livescience.com/65777-nasa-launching-deep-space-atomic-clock.html?jwsource=cl已复制直播00:0002:3202:32Your Recommended Playlist01:33Better Bug Sprays?01:08Why Do French Fries Taste So Bad When They’re Cold?04:24Sperm Whale Befriends Underwater Robot00:29Robot Jumps Like a Grasshopper, Rolls Like a Ball01:09Robots to the Rescue02:27Robotic Arms关闭  In essence, atomic clocks can correct themselves. In an atomic clock, the frequency of the quartz oscillator is transformed into the frequency that is applied to a collection of atoms from a specific element. If the frequency is correct, it will cause many electrons in the atoms to jump energy levels. But if it’s not, fewer electrons will jump. That tells the clock that the quartz oscillator is off-frequency and how much to correct it. On the Deep Space Atomic Clock, this correction is calculated and applied to the quartz oscillator every few seconds. But that’s not all that makes the Deep Space Atomic Clock special. This clock doesn’t just use mercury atoms, it also uses charged mercury ions. Because ions are atoms that have electric charge, they can be contained in an electromagnetic “trap.” This keeps the atoms from interacting with the walls of a vacuum chamber, a common problem with the neutral atoms used in regular atomic clocks. When they interact with the vacuum walls, environmental changes such as temperature can cause changes in the atoms themselves, and lead to frequency errors. The Deep Space Atomic Clock won’t be subject to such environmental changes, according to NASA, and so will be 50 times more stable than the clocks used on GPS satellites. After the clock launches today, scientists will be able to begin testing the clock’s precision as it spends days, then months in orbit. The Deep Space Atomic Clock will launch from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket as one of two dozen payloads. The 4-hour launch window opens at 11:30 p.m. EDT (0330 June 25 GMT); visit Space.com tomorrow for complete coverage of the launch. Follow Kasandra @KassieBrabaw. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook. by Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksYou May LikeVikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 min and see why everyone is addicted!Vikings: Free Online GameUndoTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionOne Thing All Liars Have in Common, Brace YourselfTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionUndoGundry MD Total Restore SupplementU.S. Cardiologist: It’s Like a Pressure Wash for Your InsidesGundry MD Total Restore SupplementUndoTop 10 Best Meal DeliveryMeal Kit Wars: 10 Tested & Ranked. See Who WonTop 10 Best Meal DeliveryUndoKelley Blue Book2019 Lexus Vehicles Worth Buying for Their Resale ValueKelley Blue BookUndoArticles VallyDad Cuts Daughter’s Hair Off For Getting Birthday Highlights, Then Mom Does The UnthinkableArticles VallyUndo NASA is set to launch an incredible new atomic clock into orbit on a Falcon Heavy today (June 24) in a technology demonstration mission that could transform the way humans explore space. The Deep Space Atomic Clock, developed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, is a space-ready upgrade to the atomic clocks we use here on Earth and to the clocks that already fly on satellites like those that provide GPS. Ideally, this new atomic clock will make spacecraft navigation to distant objects in space — on the journey to Mars, for example — more autonomous, NASA said in a statement. The precision in measurement of the spacecraft’s position that scientists hope to get with the Deep Space Atomic Clock will allow spacecraft traveling in deep space to act on their own, without much communication with Earth. It’d be a huge improvement to how spacecraft are currently navigated, NASA said. AdvertisementHow to Build the Most Accurate Atomic Clocks | VideoResearchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology use laser-cooled cesium atoms to develop ultra-accurate atomic clocks for GPS systems, global telecommunications and other essential technologies.Volume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9接下来播放Better Bug Sprays?01:33关闭选项Automated Captions – en-US facebook twitter 发邮件 reddit 链接https://www.livescience.com/65777-nasa-launching-deep-space-atomic-clock.html?jwsource=cl已复制直播00:0005:0005:00Your Recommended Playlist01:33Better Bug Sprays?01:08Why Do French Fries Taste So Bad When They’re Cold?04:24Sperm Whale Befriends Underwater Robot00:29Robot Jumps Like a Grasshopper, Rolls Like a Ball01:09Robots to the Rescue02:27Robotic Arms关闭  Fusion Powered Spacecraft Could Be Just A Decade Away NASA Wants Robots to Sniff Out Moon Pits for Astronaut Homeslast_img read more