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Monkeys Use Minds to Control Avatar Arms

first_imgMost of us don’t think twice when we extend our arms to hug a friend or push a shopping cart—our limbs work together seamlessly to follow our mental commands. For researchers designing brain-controlled prosthetic limbs for people, however, this coordinated arm movement is a daunting technical challenge. A new study showing that monkeys can move two virtual limbs with only their brain activity is a major step toward achieving that goal, scientists say.The brain controls movement by sending electrical signals to our muscles through nerve cells. When limb-connecting nerve cells are damaged or a limb is amputated, the brain is still able to produce those motion-inducing signals, but the limb can’t receive them or simply doesn’t exist. In recent years, scientists have worked to create devices called brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) that can pick up these interrupted electrical signals and control the movements of a computer cursor or a real or virtual prosthetic.So far, the success of BMIs in humans has been largely limited to moving single body parts, such as a hand or an arm. Last year, for example, a woman paralyzed from the neck down for 10 years commanded a robotic arm to pick up and lift a piece of chocolate to her mouth just by thinking about it. But, “no device will ever work for people unless it restores bimanual behaviors,” says neuroscientist Miguel Nicolelis at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, senior author of the paper. “You need to use both arms and hands for the simplest tasks.”Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)In 2011, Nicolelis made waves by announcing on The Daily Show that he is developing a robotic, thought-controlled “exoskeleton” that will allow paralyzed people to walk again. Further raising the stakes, he pledged that the robotic body suit will enable a paralyzed person to kick a soccer ball during the opening ceremony of the 2014 Brazil World Cup. (Nicolelis is Brazilian and his research is partly funded by the nation’s government.)That feat will require decoding the complex neural signals that coordinate two legs as they walk together and keep a person upright. Now, by successfully training two monkeys to control virtual arms using only their minds, Nicolelis’s team has moved closer to that goal. The new experiment involved two monkeys, a male and a female. Before it began, each monkey had electrodes implanted into its right and left brain hemisphere, which recorded the activity of up to 500 neurons acting together—the highest number of neurons yet used in such an experiment, Nicolelis says. The animal’s task was to control the movement of two avatar arms on a computer monitor: To get a fruit juice reward, it had to place both hands over two circles and hold them there for 100 milliseconds, as demonstrated in the video above. A computer algorithm processed the monkey’s brain activity, homing in on patterns of neurons firing as it learned to do the task.The female monkey, called monkey C, first learned how to get the juice by moving joysticks with her real arms and hands—as she manipulated the joysticks, the right and left avatar arms did what she wished. After practicing this during regular 20- to 40-minute sessions over the course of a year, she was strapped into a padded chair so that she couldn’t move her own arms or hands, and trained to control the avatar arms just by thinking. After weeks of practice, she was able to complete the task more than 75% of the time, the scientists report today in Science Translational Medicine.Because a paralyzed person or amputee can’t necessarily practice a task using joysticks, the next step was to determine whether observation alone could teach the BMI. Monkey M, a male, wasn’t allowed to use the joysticks or move his arms at any point in the experiment—he simply observed the task being performed. It took longer for him to learn, but monkey M also learned to control the virtual arms using only his thoughts. Both animals’ performances improved over time, and the researchers noticed that their neuronal firing patterns changed as this happened, suggesting that their brains were adapting to the BMI devices. This could be because the monkeys came to consider the virtual arms as part of their own bodies, Nicolelis suggests. “The animals literally incorporate the avatar as if the avatar was them.”The basic technology that Nicolelis and colleagues used to extract instructions for movement from the mishmash of monkey brain signals isn’t new, says Jose Contreras-Vidal, a biomedical engineer at the University of Houston in Texas. The real advance of the study, he says, is that the team was able to figure out which neurons they needed to record to control two arms working together. Although one might assume that it would be possible to simply combine neural activity from two arms acting independently, the study shows that cells act differently when they are coordinating the movements of two limbs than they do when separately instructing one limb or the other, he says. This is the first study to extract and use that complex information to coordinate arm movements in real time, Contreras-Vidal says.Although he agrees that the new study is strong, Andrew Schwartz, a neurobiologist at the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, thinks scientists can do better. Even though the monkeys’ task was quite simple, they had only about a 45% success rate overall, he notes. “I’m looking forward to higher performance and success rates and more realistic natural movements.”Nicolelis may have shown that the monkeys can learn to use these avatar arms to complete a one simple task, but it’s not clear that the same type of training will work for the more complex activities that humans need to perform, Contreras-Vidal cautions. “This is a first step.”last_img read more

In Academia, Women Collaborate Less With Their Same-Sex Juniors

first_imgIn that crucial period before tenure, assistant professors must publish or perish. Co-authoring a paper with a senior faculty member down the hall can make all the difference. But at least for female psychologists, that collaborator tends to be male, even when there are female full professors available, according to a new study. The authors say that the findings may reveal yet another barrier toward women advancing in academia.The researchers honed in on psychology because of all the scientific fields they examined, it had the highest prevalence of high-ranking women. They surveyed 50 psychology departments at U.S. and Canadian universities. More than other scientific fields, psychology is heading for gender parity, though it’s not there yet. While the gender ratio of assistant professors is almost exactly even, with slightly more females, full-professor males still outnumbered females 2 to 1 in their data. The researchers surveyed the psychologists’ research publications from 2008 to 2011. Because the study focused on collaborations within departments, they focused only on the 459 papers that had a full professor and one other member of the same department as co-authors. Such collaborations can make all the difference for junior faculty. If they don’t publish major papers within 6 years, they are unlikely to make tenure, which can often spell doom for their academic careers. Then they tallied how many of those collaborations happened between two full professors or across ranks—a full professor co-authoring with an assistant professor—and calculated the gender ratios. Of course, even if collaboration is completely gender-blind, those gender ratios would not be equally split between male-male and male-female pairs, because there are twice as many male full professors and the rate of publication varies between departments. So the team calculated what the expected gender ratios would be if the psychologists in their study were just randomly collaborating with members of their own departments. If the published papers match those expected ratios, then that would indicate that gender does not play a large role in the collaborations of psychologists within their departments.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)That’s not what the researchers found. In a 4-year period, female full professors co-authored only 14 papers with female junior faculty members in their departments, half as many as expected, the team reports online today in Current Biology. Female full professors did collaborate as much as expected with female peers in their departments, as well as male junior faculty.Female academics face several challenges that their male colleagues don’t, says lead author Joyce Benenson, a psychologist at Emmanuel College in Boston  (who co-authored the paper with Richard Wrangham, a full professor at Harvard University where Berenson worked previously as junior faculty). “Besides greater investment in child care and lower self-confidence than men, along with discrimination by men towards women—which by the way is present by 3 years of age— women don’t obtain the same level of support as men do from [higher ranked] same-sex individuals.” Berenson notes that the difference starts early in development. “From early childhood onwards, girls [more than boys] prefer to interact with one other equal same-sex peer in an exclusive, intensive, intimate relationship. … This means that higher-ranked and lower-ranked girls are avoided and extraneous girls are excluded.”For some senior female psychologists, the results are worrying. “I remember talking about this with other women my age when I was much younger,” says Linda Bartoshuk, a full professor of psychology at the University of Florida in Gainesville who has seen her share of gender bias among scientists. “Some older women treated us younger women almost worse than some men did,” she says. “We called it the ‘Queen Bee syndrome.’ We saw it as a phenomenon of passing on abuse. Women who had been treated unfairly saw this as some kind of right of passage and felt entitled to pass it on.” The lack of collaboration found in the study may reflect similar attitudes, she says, although it could also be due to female junior faculty approaching senior males preferentially, in spite of help offered from senior women.“There is a lot of literature on this in organizations where high-status women are disliked by subordinate women,” Benenson says. But so far she has identified only the lack of collaboration among female psychologists across ranks, not the cause. However, the pattern matches the social behaviors of chimpanzees, she says, where the males “interact [more] in groups with differently ranked individuals, and tolerate conflict more readily than females.” Knowing that this pattern holds even among female scientists should be helpful. “Only by increasing awareness of this can women work to overcome what I consider an innate propensity to favor kin, helpful men, and an equal [rank] female best friend.”last_img read more

‘The World Cup will be our best gift to Sachin’

first_imgThe World Cup is returning to India – and the sub-continent – after 15 years.Sachin Tendulkar is all set for the World Cup. APOurs is the No. 1 Test team in the world, we are among the top ODI teams and we have been the T20 world champions. With the World Cup not very far off, I can already sense the enthusiasm, especially after the Indian team’s sterling performance in the tough Test series against South Africa.The World Cup would be a big attraction not only here but outside India as well. The weather in February will be perfect and it will be a brilliant spectacle.The ninth edition of the showpiece event will give an even greater boost to the game, especially in the rural areas.People of all ages will get to see the best players in action on their soil. Even though the original plan was to have the World Cup in the entire subcontinent, including Pakistan, it couldn’t happen. People in Pakistan are disappointed and so are we, because if there’s anything that binds us, it is our shared passion for cricket. Our players and peoples have had a close relationship, and therefore it is sad that there won’t be any matches there because of security issues.Coming to the game, all eyes naturally will be on the Indian team. Though the final squad has not been announced yet, the concern that is uppermost in my mind is the spate of injuries. Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag and Zaheer Khan have had serious fitness issues and they will sit out the ODI series in South Africa. Once that gets over, the players with injuries must be given time for recuperation and a lot of physiotherapy.advertisementIf one looks at the team, Gambhir, Sehwag and Virat Kohli have been in tremendous form. Sachin Tendulkar is as young as ever and M.S. Dhoni is doing very well. Our batting and bowling look very good and we have done well against Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and South Africa in recent ODIs.That makes India the No. 1 contender for the World Cup. You need batsmen who can bowl handy parttime spin in ODIs, so players like Yusuf Pathan will be crucial. Apart from India, I believe England too has a good chance. It’s a young and talented side high on morale after its spectacular Ashes win. And they have very good depth in fast bowling and a top-class spinner in Graeme Swann.Personally, I feel it is time the Indian team gives a perfect gift to Sachin Tendulkar, who most probably will be playing his last World Cup. He has given so much to the Indian team, it is time the players gave something back to him. The World Cup, perhaps?-Chetan Chauhan was a member of the Indian team that lifted the 1983 World Cup under Kapil Dev’s captaincylast_img read more

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge Slams ‘Careless’ Bayern Munich as Injury Strikes Lucas Hernandez

first_imgAthens: Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has slammed their “careless” performance following a nervy 3-2 win at Olympiakos as the German giants lost another centre-back to injury with Lucas Hernandez damaging ankle ligaments.”I don’t think the performance we produced will bring us serious success if we don’t get a handle on things,” Rummenigge bluntly told the squad at the post-match banquet. After three straight wins in Europe, Bayern are on their way to the knock-out stages for a 12th season in a row. However the stuttering away win came at a price as Hernandez suffered a “partial rupture of the inner ligament in his right ankle”, the club confirmed Wednesday.The 2018 World Cup winner, the most expensive signing in Bayern’s history, is expected to be out “for weeks” with fellow centre-back Niklas Suele already sidelined for at least six months after tearing knee ligaments on Saturday.Two goals by Robert Lewandowski turned Bayern’s fortunes in Athens on Tuesday after hosts Olympiakos grabbed an early Youssef El-Arabi goal.Corentin Tolisso scored Bayern’s third goal midway through the second half with a curling long-range shot.However, the German defence looked far from solid, especially after Olympiakos midfielder Guilherme beat goalkeeper Manuel Neuer to set up a tense final 10 minutes.The performance — well below that of the dazzling 7-2 rout of Spurs in north London three weeks ago — also left Bayern’s director of sport Hasan Salihamidzic unimpressed.”You could go crazy watching a game like that. Everything has to be better”, he complained to Sky.For the fifth game in a row, Bayern conceded two goals in Athens, which especially annoyed Rummenigge.”Again, we conceded two goals,” he fumed,” we are playing too carelessly – that will lead to trouble at some point.”MISTAKESBayern top Group B by five points ahead of second-placed Tottenham, who thrashed Red Star Belgrade 5-0 in north London, but the defending German champions are only third in the Bundesliga having dropped five points in their last two league games.On Saturday, Bayern host giant-killers Union Berlin, who sit 14th in the table yet have already shocked Dortmund and Freiburg in their first Bundesliga season.Rummenigge has called on Bayern’s stars to tackle Union at the Allianz Arena with “the greatest concentration and motivation to score three points” and get back to winning ways after conceding a late equaliser in Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Augsburg, which followed a shock 2-1 defeat at home by Hoffenheim.As Rummenigge pointed out, Bayern can consider themselves lucky, because “despite all the mistakes in the last few games, we are only one point behind” leaders Moenchengladbach ” at the top of the table”.”On Saturday, we have the chance to become table leaders, that is the standard FC Bayern has set, we have to live up to that.” Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. bayern munichchampions leagueChampions League 2019-20Europe First Published: October 23, 2019, 5:46 PM ISTlast_img read more

DATA MODUL: LCD controller boards on show at electronica

first_img Continue Reading Previous Würth: four booths full of innovations at electronica 2018Next Wind River collaborates with BT on Edge Cloud Computing for 5G DATA MODUL’s self-developed controller board series eMotion was specially designed for industrial requirements. Beyond all trends, long term availability, quality and stability remain the basic requirements for professional applications. According to the customer´s needs the various scaler boards of the eMotion family are realized with a variety of video inputs (DisplayPort 1.1, 1.2, VGA(RGB), DVI-D, DVI-I, HDMI, CVBS/YC). Apart from standard TFTs with single/dual channel LVDS input and resolutions up to 1920 x 1200 pixels, panels can also be controlled with quad channel LVDS, eDP (8 lanes), V-BY-One (8 lanes) and resolutions up to 3840 x 2160 (UHD). Special features of the high-end boards, such as DDC/CI support, OSD via RS232, Picture-in-Picture (PiP), Picture-by-Picture (PBP) and Frame Rate Converter (FRC), enable low cost integration into demanding monitor applications. Furthermore, ambient light and proximity sensors, as well as a “Daisy Chain” function for video wall applications can be integrated.In the embedded area, for instance, there is an increasing demand for monitor solutions with as few as possible interfaces. With the eMotion USB TYPE C with alternate mode, DATA MODUL reduced the I/O to one cable, and therefore allows flat, stylish and easy to integrate monitor solutions.For the ongoing trend of ever higher resolutions (UHD/4k), DATA MODUL developed the eMotion UHD some time ago, and is now introducing an upgrade with the UHD II. The UHD II can now be supplied with 2x HDMI2.0 and 2xDP1.2 video inputs, supports 3840×2160@60Hz at all inputs and has also integrated both, PIP and PBP functionalities.As audio outputs, one analog HP output (connection for analog, active speaker) and one internal, digital I2S connection for an active audio amplifier (e.g. the DATA MODUL “Digital Audio-Board”) are available. The support of Ambient Light Control (ALC) was once again optimized. This means that the backlight brightness can automatically be adjusted to the ambient light conditions. The Firmware is updated easily via a USB stick. In the industrial version, a temperature dependent fan control is implemented. The UHD II and all other boards of the eMotion series are available as a complete LCD controller board kit including all components (cable, converter, power supply and OSD board). Also available are budget compliant versions. UHDII will be on display at electronica.Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInMoreRedditTumblrPinterestWhatsAppSkypePocketTelegram Tags: Boards & Modules last_img read more

Board of Control for Cricket in India announces two-year ban for age frauds

first_imgThe Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced a minimum of two-year suspension for players found guilty of age fraud.”The BCCI has a zero-tolerance policy for age fraud in sport and has taken strict action against cricketers found guilty of manipulating their date of birth certificates while registering for BCCI tournaments,” said the BCCI in a statement.”As conveyed to state associations at the start of the season, BCCI wishes to reiterate that from the 2018-19 season, any cricketer who is found guilty of tampering his/her date of birth will be disqualified and barred from participating in any BCCI tournament for a period of 2 years i.e. 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons,” it added.Earlier, a cricketer faced a ban of one year.In September, the BCCI had banned a Meghalya-bound Delhi player, Jaskirat Singh Sachdeva, for producing a fake birth certificate to play in an Under-19 tournament.Age fraud is a perennial phenomenon facing junior cricket. In 2016, former India captain Rahul Dravid had acknowledged age-fudging as a major problem in Indian cricket and welcomed BCCI’s decision to allow a player to compete in the U-19 World Cup only once.(With inputs from PTI)last_img read more

10 months agoNo chance! Bournemouth boss Howe rules out Wilson joining Chelsea in January

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say No chance! Bournemouth boss Howe rules out Wilson joining Chelsea in Januaryby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveEddie Howe has once again denied reports Callum Wilson will join Chelsea in January.The Blues got a good look at Wilson in Wednesday night’s 1-0 win over the Cherries.Asked about his top striker after the game, Howe was adamant he was not for sale.He said: “Callum’s our player and very, very focused on us. I think you could see that with his performance.”Asked if there was any scenario in which Wilson could be sold in January, Howe replied: “Not from my perspective, no.” last_img

10 months agoPochettino hails Spurs thrashing: Fantastic effort

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Pochettino hails Spurs thrashing: Fantastic effortby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveTottenham thrashed Bournemouth 5-0 on Wednesday to go above Manchester City into second in the Premier League.Christian Eriksen, Son-Heung Min (2), Lucas Moura and Harry Kane found the net at Wembley.Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino stated, “The effort was fantastic. To have one day less after Everton, I am very pleased with the performance.”It is important to manage confidence in the right way, victory make us believe. Of course, think step-by-step and be ready to arrive at the next game in the best condition.”We are only halfway to end of the season, we need to replicate the same second-half of the season. It is up to us, if we show the same quality and same belief and behave in the same way, then maybe at end of season I’ll talk in a way that maybe we fight for big things.” last_img read more

Indian selectors given data analytics presentation before World Cup squad meeting

first_img Press Trust of India New DelhiApril 15, 2019UPDATED: April 15, 2019 22:58 IST BCCI selection committee was given a data analytics presentation before the World Cup squad meeting. (IANS Photo)HIGHLIGHTSIndian selectors were given a 3-hour data analytics presentation before the World Cup squad meetingThe presentation was shown to give selectors a clearer picture as to where the players stood and what can be expected in English conditionsIndian team’s data analyst CKM Dhananjay prepared the data analytics packageDinesh Karthik’s scoring areas in the middle overs, Rishabh Pant’s success rate at the death overs were all put in a data analytics software and shown to the selection committee prior to the World Cup squad meeting on Monday.In a first by the BCCI, the five-member national selection committee was given a three and half hour presentation, a day before the meeting in order to give the selectors a clearer picture as to where the players stood and what can be expected in English conditions.It is learnt that the Indian team’s data analyst CKM Dhananjay prepared a special data analytics package doing an entire SWOT analysis of the World Cup hopefuls as well as opposition since the 2017 Champions Trophy.The normal convention is that the selectors are provided with raw data, like matches, runs and strike-rates, wickets etc.”This time, it was decided that there would be a tweak in the system. On Sunday, a three and half hour presentation was provided with processed data. In fact, this could be done before every major selection meeting,” a source close to the selection committee told PTI on conditions of anonymity.So what exactly were the things that were discussed?It was learnt that certain specifics areas were looked into. Like Kedar Jadhav’s strike-rate during a particular phase of play or the specific conditions when the top three have faced trouble against any particular opposition.”Things like how England or New Zealand have fared against our wrist spinners or how Australia has negotiated our orthodox left-arm spinners during a particular phase of play was shown to the selectors,” the source said.advertisementThe par score at each of the venues in England also came up for discussion.It is learnt that the selectors were shown England’s playing XI in various home conditions and what exactly worked for the winning sides — home or opposition.The kind of bowling attacks expected and who among the Indian players can be successful against specific bowlers.Also Read | India strong contender for World Cup: VVS LaxmanAlso Read | 7 first-timers, 2 World Cup-winners in India’s World Cup 2019 squadAlso Read | 3-dimensional Vijay Shankar preferred over Ambati Rayudu for India’s World Cup squadFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted bykarishma Tags :Follow ICC Cricket World Cup 2019Follow Indian cricket team Indian selectors given data analytics presentation before World Cup squad meetingIn a first by the BCCI, the five-member national selection committee was given a three and half hour presentation, a day before the meeting in order to give the selectors a clearer picture as to where the players stood and what can be expected in English conditions.advertisementlast_img read more

Jodhpur Park murder accused arrested

first_imgKolkata: The prime accused of the Jodhpur park murder case, in which an elderly lady was killed, was arrested on Tuesday.The accused identified as Debasish Banerjee was her neighbour. On April 4, an elderly woman identified as Shyamali Ghosh (75) was murdered inside her flat at Jodhpur Park. She used to live alone. During preliminary investigation, cops were sure that more than one person were involved in the murder. Cops also said that the killers were known to her as the apartment door was not broken or tampered. Also Read – City bids adieu to Goddess DurgaDuring the investigation, police found a diary in which Ghosh had written that she felt she could be murdered any day. Later, police nabbed two persons identified as gardener Swapan Mondal and caretaker Sanjib Das. During the interrogation, the duo confessed to the crime. They said someone who was known to Ghosh had given them the murder contract but they had not met this man. During the scrutiny of mobile phone records, cops came up with Banerjee’s name. It is alleged that he was trying to get all the apartments. But Ghosh refused to accept his offer. So, he decided to get rid of her.last_img read more

Interim boss at Audi named as permanent head of luxury brand

first_imgFRANKFURT — Volkswagen’s Audi division has named acting head Bram Schot as the luxury brand’s permanent boss after his predecessor was jailed.Schot took over on an acting basis in June after Rupert Stadler was jailed while prosecutors investigate possible illegal manipulation of diesel engine emissions. Stadler has since left the company.Schot, 57, was acting CEO along with his duties as marketing head at Audi, which also oversees the Volkswagen Group’s Lamborghini car and Ducati motorcycle brands.Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess, who also heads Audi’s board of directors, said in a statement Wednesday that with his new mandate Schot would “further accelerate the transformation of the enterprise.”Schot was also appointed to the Volkswagen Group’s management board, its top executive body.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the

first_imgTORONTO — Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week:Cabinet shufflePrime Minister Justin Trudeau will shuffle his cabinet Monday to deal with the resignation of Treasury Board President Scott Brison who has said he won’t seek re-election this fall. Observers will be watching to see if Trudeau simply replaces Brison or uses the opportunity for a broader change to his cabinet.Shaw earningsShaw Communications Inc. will hold a conference call on Monday to discuss its first-quarter results. The Calgary-based company said in October that its federal regulator can best protect Canadians from problem sales practices by banning telecom companies from using outside contractors to do their door-to-door sales.2018 real estate numbersThe Canadian Real Estate Association will release its December and year-end home sales numbers on Tuesday. CREA predicted in December that national home sales will fall to a near decade low in 2019, as rising interest rates and strict mortgage stress-test rules continue to put a damper on buyer sentiment.Kinder Morgan updateKinder Morgan Canada Ltd. holds a conference call to discuss its fourth-quarter results on the Wednesday. The CEO of the company’s U.S.-based parent company recently said there’s a “seller’s market” for its assets such as crude tank storage and rail terminals in Alberta, the Vancouver Wharves Terminal and the Cochin Pipeline system.Inflation updateStatistics Canada will release its consumer price index for December on Friday. The numbers for November showed the annual pace of inflation slowed to 1.7 per cent as upward pressure from higher gasoline prices eased off, giving the Bank of Canada another reason to keep interest rates on hold. The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Saudi Scholar Under Fire For Saying Women Not Required to Wear

Rabat – A Saudi scholar came under fire over the weekend after he stated on a television program on the Saudi MBC channel on Saturday that women are not required to wear the veil in Islam. To make his point, he appeared with his wife, who did not wear a veil.Echoing a series of tweets he has been posting on his Twitter account over the past couple of weeks, the controversial Saudi scholar and former head of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice in Makkah Ahmed bin Qassim al-Ghamidi said, “Islam doesn’t require women to wear the veil.”Citing some of the hadiths (sayings) of the Prophets, he said, “we should not require women to cover their faces.” He pointed out that during the time of the Prophet and his companions, “Muslim women did not cover their faces.” The Saudi scholar went on to add that, contrary to many Muslims’ beliefs, only the wives of the Prophet “were required to wear Hijab so that adult males outside of their immediate family couldn’t see them.”??? ???? ??????? ???? ??? ????? ????? ????? ?????? ?? ???????? ???????? ????????? ????? ???????? ???????? #????_???????_???_?????— ??????? ?????? (@Abdullah_akeel) December 15, 2014????? MBC ?????????? ????? ????? “???? ???????” ?? ?? ??? ???????? ?? ???????? ????? ????? ????????? (???? ???) pic.twitter.com/hzEzXLB0yG— Da????Na (@Dana20156) December 15, 2014To support his claim, he said that the Prophet did not urge other Muslim to wear the hijab (veil).“The hijab was required only for the wives of the Prophet, and its validity ended with their death,” he pointed out.However, the overwhelming majority of Saudis did not welcome his claim. They rejected it and took to social media to denounce him, insult him, and even threaten him. #????_???????_???_????? ???? ???? ?? ????? ???? ???? ????? ??????? ?????? ?? ??? ????? ????? ?????? ??? ?????? ????? ?? ??????? ???????????— ????????? ?????? (@allahim) December 14, 2014Others attacked him for allowing his wife to appear unveiled on a primetime TV show, something uncommon in the conservative country.But while the majority chose to attack the scholar rather than debate his ideas and refute them with strong evidence, others supported him and praised his courage. read more

Canada Bond yields and prime rates for Friday Oct 20

Canada Bond yields for Friday as of 4 p.m. (previous day in brackets):One-month: 0.85Three-month: 0.93Six-month: 1.145One-year: 1.38Two-year: 1.475Five-year: 1.70510-year: 2.03230-year: 2.375Interest rates:Prime rate: 3.20%Overnight lending rate: 1.00%

Holiday sales have been lacklustre stores look to week after Christmas for

Holiday sales have been lacklustre; stores look to week after Christmas for a boost AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Bargain-hungry Americans will need to go on a post-Christmas spending binge to salvage this holiday shopping season.Despite the huge discounts and other incentives that stores offered leading up to Christmas, U.S. holiday sales so far this year have been the weakest since 2008, when the nation was in a deep recession.So stores now are depending on the days after Christmas to make up lost ground: The final week of December can account for about 15 per cent of the month’s sales, and the day after Christmas is typically one of the biggest shopping days of the year.Stores, which don’t typically talk about their plans for sales and other promotions during the season, are known for offering discounts of up to 70 per cent in the days after Christmas. This year, they’re hoping to lure more bargain hunters who held off on shopping because they wanted to get the best deals of the season.The Macy’s location in Herald Square in New York was bustling with shoppers on Wednesday. There were a variety of deals throughout the store: candy dispensers for 70 per cent off, various men’s clothing items for “buy one get one free,” belts for 50 per cent off, a bin of ties for $9.99.Ulises Guzman, 30, a social worker, was shopping in the store. He said he held off buying until the final days before Christmas, knowing that the deals would get better as stores got more desperate. He said he was expecting discounts of at least 50 per cent.The strategy worked. He saw a coat he wanted at Banana Republic for $200 in the days before Christmas but decided to hold off on making a purchase; on Wednesday, he got it for $80.“I’m not looking at anything that’s original price,” he said.Lenox Square Mall in Atlanta was also crowded by midday on Wednesday. Laschonda Pitluck, an 18-year-old student, had held off on shopping until after Christmas because she wanted big deals. Last year she spent over $100 on gifts but this year she’s keeping it under $50.Pitluck said she found items for 50 per cent off, including a hoodie and jeans for herself at American Eagle and a shirt at Urban Outfitters. She said she would have bought the clothes if they hadn’t been 50 per cent off.“I wasn’t looking for deals before Christmas, I waited until after,” she said. She bought boxers for her boyfriend, and was looking for a hat but couldn’t find one.Holiday sales are a crucial indicator of the economy’s strength. November and December account for up to 40 per cent of annual revenue for many retailers.So far, sales of electronics, clothing, jewelry and home goods in the two months before Christmas increased 0.7 per cent compared with last year, according to the MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse report. That was the weakest holiday performance since 2008 when sales dropped sharply.Kathy Grannis,a spokeswoman at The National Retail Federation, the nation’s largest retail trade group, said Wednesday the trade group is sticking to its forecast for sales in the November and December period to be up 4.1 per cent to $586.1 billion this year. That’s more than a percentage point lower than the growth in each of the past two years, and the smallest increase since 2009 when sales were up just 0.3 per cent.Grannis noted that the trade group’s definition of holiday sales also includes food and building supplies. “Stores have a big week ahead, and it’s still too early to know how the holiday season fared, at this point,” she said.Spending by consumers accounts for 70 per cent of overall economic activity, so the eight-week period encompassed by the SpendingPulse data is seen as a critical time not just for retailers but for manufacturers, wholesalers and companies at every other point along the supply chain.The SpendingPulse data released Tuesday, which captures sales from Oct. 28 through Dec. 24 across all payment methods, is the first major snapshot of holiday retail sales. A clearer picture will emerge next week as retailers like Macy’s and Target report revenue from stores open for at least a year. That sales measure is widely watched in the retail industry because it excludes revenue from stores that recently opened or closed, which can be volatile.In the run-up to Christmas, analysts blamed bad weather for putting a damper on shopping. In late October, Superstorm Sandy battered the Northeast and mid-Atlantic states, which account for 24 per cent of U.S. retail sales.Shopping picked up in the second half of November, but then the threat of the country falling off a “fiscal cliff” gained strength, throwing consumers off track once again.Lawmakers have yet to reach a deal that would prevent tax increases and government spending cuts set to take effect at the beginning of 2013. If the cuts and tax hikes kick in and stay in place for months, the Congressional Budget Office says the nation could fall back into recession.Shopping over the past two months was weakest in areas affected by Sandy and a more recent winter storm in the Midwest. Sales declined by 3.9 per cent in the mid-Atlantic and 1.4 per cent in the Northeast compared with last year. They rose 0.9 per cent in the north central part of the country.The West and South posted gains of between 2 per cent and 3 per cent, still weaker than the 3 per cent to 4 per cent increases expected by many retail analysts.Online sales, typically a bright spot, grew only 8.4 per cent from Oct. 28 through Saturday, according to SpendingPulse. That’s a dramatic slowdown from the online sales growth of 15 to 17 per cent seen in the prior 18-month period, according to the data service.Online sales did enjoy a modest boost after the recent snowstorm that hit the Midwest, McNamara said. Online sales make up about 10 per cent of total holiday business.___Anderson reported from Atlanta and Choi reported from New York.Ann D’Innocenzio in New York and Daniel Wagner in Washington contributed to this report. by Mae Anderson And Candice Choi, The Associated Press Posted Dec 26, 2012 4:58 pm MDT read more

UC RUSALs production and summary financial results for 2007

first_img2007 The 6% growth of primary aluminium production and 16% increase in value added casthouse production resulted from UC RUSAL’s launch of full capacity at the Khakas aluminium smelter and ongoing projects to modernise equipment and expand production, including casthouse modernisation and technical renewal of equipment at aluminium smelters.The increase in alumina production of 5.1% was a result of the completion of the modernisation of the Achinsk and Nikolaev refineries, as well as the optimisation of production processes at Eurallumina.The 28% growth of aluminium foil production is due to the launch of full capacity of the ARMENAL foil mill on schedule.In 2007 investment in modernisation, expansion and equipment retooling of production capacities amounted to over $1.3 billion. This includes research & development expenditure which amounted to about $100 million, including the development of technical solutions to optimise production and technology of all of the group’s aluminium smelters, alumina refineries, service centers and hydropower construction projects.The company completed large scale modernisation of its casthouse production allowing it to increase the share of value-added products almost tenfold since 2000 to 50% of total aluminium production. The investments in the project amounted to approximately $130 million.Within the framework of the large scale environmental modernisation programme at the Krasnoyarsk smelter aimed at reducing the level of hazardous production emissions by 30%, the smelter’s potrooms were equipped with automated alumina point feeders. Subsequent monitoring, conducted in autumn 2007, showed that the efforts resulted in an 82% decrease of perfluorochemical emissions per tonne of aluminum produced. The volume of capital investment in modernization of this smelter amounted to more than $85 million.In the summer 2007 UC RUSAL initiated an ecological modernisation programme at the Bratsk smelter, the world’s largest aluminium smelter. The first stage of the project, amounting to approximately $350 million, is planned to last four years and will be completed in 2011. An initial $12 million was invested in 2007 into the project.In 2007 the company completed the process of equipping the Sayanogorsk aluminium smelter with dry gas purifying facilities that capture up to 99.5% of harmful emissions, preventing them from reaching the atmosphere. The goal of the project was to minimise the level of emissions and improve the ecological indicators of the plant. The capital investment in the plant amounted to $105 million in 2007.The Nikolaev refinery modernisation project to increase alumina production to 1.7 Mt/y continued and is expected to be completed by 2009. In the framework of the project, construction of the new red mud disposal area No. 2 was completed last year enabling an expansion of alumina production.s Total investment in this project is forecast at $170 million, of which $85 million was committed in 2007.UC RUSAL invested about $1.6 billion to diversify the company’s business and create new production capacities.A controlling stake in the ALSCON aluminium smelter in Nigeria was bought. The company completed the retooling of the plant and started the testing phase. Production launch is scheduled for February of this year. The total investment in this project will amount to approximately $300 million over the three year period.The construction of two new potrooms with combined capacity of about 170,000 t/y at the Irkutsk aluminium smelter was completed. The launch is scheduled for the beginning of 2008. The total investment in the project amounts to more than $600 million.The Khakas aluminium smelter reached full capacity. The total investment in the project amounted to around $750 million. The joint project of HydroOGK and UC RUSAL to construct Boguchanskaya Hydropower Plant continues in the framework of the Boguchanskoye Energy and Metals Complex construction project.The construction of the Boguchansk aluminium smelter began as part of the Boguchanskoye Energy and Metals Complex project. The smelter’s planned capacity is 600,000 t/y. Also, UC RUSAL initiated the construction of the Taishet smelter in the Irkutsk region. The total investment in the planned 750,000 t/y aluminium smelter will be some $2 billion.In April 2007 UC RUSAL and Federal Nuclear Power Agency (ROSATOM) signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the joint implementation of long-term investment projects. The document provides for the detailed exploration of opportunities to establish an energy and metals complex in the Far East comprising a nuclear power plant and an aluminium smelter.In October 2007 UC RUSAL signed a co-operation agreement with the government of Russia’s Saratov region for the construction of the world’s largest energy and metals complex, including a nuclear power plant and an aluminium smelter.In November 2007 UC RUSAL signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Kazakh Samruk Holding to establish a joint venture to develop the Ekibastuzskoye coal field in the area of Bogatyr and Severny coal mines in the Pavlodar region, both in the Republic of Kazakhstan. The parties will produce coal to serve the Kazakh and Russian markets.The company says “this year will not be easy for the aluminium industry. A number of factors are expected to lead to poor conditions for the world aluminium market and an increase of production expenses in 2008. The major impact will be the forecast slowdown of consumer demand in the USA and a possible recession plus the reduced competitiveness of imported products because of the weak US dollar.  These factors will negatively influence domestic demand for aluminium and may lead to lower demand for aluminium from US largest trade partners. In addition, the significant increase in the price of energy resources, in particular oil, will negatively influence the cost of aluminium production throughout 2008, decreasing its profitability.  “On the other hand, China is expected to reduce exports of aluminium in 2008, continue its active urbanisation and become a net importer. The increased cost of energy and raw materials, higher construction costs for new aluminium plants, as well as tougher environmental legislation requiring the use of environmentally friendly metals should stimulate the demand and provide new opportunities for aluminium. Growth of demand for aluminium is expected to be at least 7-8% per annum.“In this situation, one of the company’s top priorities will be further optimisation of expenses in order to maintain its position as one of the most effective aluminium companies in the world. Another important priority of the company will be the completion of the acquisition of 25% plus one share of Norilsk Nickel and further efforts to develop the company into one of the world’s largest metals and mining corporations.    The company is the global leader in the aluminium industry, accounting for approximately 12% and 15% of global production of aluminium and alumina respectively. It sells its products in 70 countries worldwide and employs 100,000 people in 19 countries, across five continents. HighlightsRevenues increased by over 11% to $14.3 billion compared with $12.9 billion in 2006Overall investment rose by 45%, amounting to $2.9 billionAluminium production increased by 6% to 4.2 MtOutput of high value-added casthouse products increased by 16% to about 2.1 MtAlumina production rose by 5.1% to more than 11.3 MtBauxite mining production was maintained at 17.3 Mt.Figures for 2006 reflect the combined results of United Company RUSAL, formed through the completion of the merger of RUSAL, SUAL and Glencore’s alumina assets. Figures are preliminary and may be revised following audit completion.Commenting on the results, Alexander Bulygin, CEO, United Company RUSAL, said: “2007 was a successful year and an important milestone in the company’s history. We integrated the production assets of the united company in less than six months and achieved significant production and financial growth. UC RUSAL has maintained its position as the world’s largest aluminium and alumina producer by completing large scale projects, such as the launch of new production capacities at the Khakas aluminium smelter and modernisation of existing smelters, including the construction of two new potrooms at the Irkutsk aluminium smelter. In addition, we started construction of the Taishet and Boguchansk aluminium smelters and began expanding our captive power base by initiating hydropower, coal and nuclear power projects that will support our industry leading position in the long term.“The two key global trends of consolidation and diversification provide the opportunity for us to leverage our competitive advantages. In order to support the further growth of our business and value of our company, we intend to develop as a global diversified metals and mining corporation and secure a position among the top five largest metals and mining giants. The agreement to acquire 25% plus one share of Norilsk Nickel is the beginning of the process of creating Russia’s first global metals and mining company by consolidating non-ferrous industrial assets. In 2008, we will focus our efforts on achieving this ambitious goal.”2007 was not an easy year for the global aluminium industry. On the one hand, the 12 month average price of primary aluminium hit a new historic high of $2,640/t. Global demand rose by over 10% due to unprecedented demand from China, Japan, and other countries in Asia as well as from Europe. On the other hand, we witnessed a minor decline in the price of primary aluminium caused by the growth of production of aluminium in the US as previously idled smelters were restarted and then the pace of domestic consumption declined as the slow down of economic growth in the US started. The rising cost of energy during the year, in particular the increase of oil prices, increased the costs of aluminium production and led to additional capital expenditures being required for the construction of new aluminium smelters. Growth dynamicscenter_img Production(in metric tonnes) 2006 last_img read more

Victoria gets creative

first_imgIn an effort to build upon Victoria’s reputation as ‘the creative state’, Victorians are being called upon to assist in the development of the state’s first ever creative industries strategy.Earlier this week, Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley launched a discussion paper entitled ‘Let’s get creative about Victoria’s future’, bringing together all sectors of the arts.“This strategy is an opportunity to re-imagine the role creative and cultural industries play in our lives, our communities and our state – and ensure that all Victorians reap the cultural, social and economic benefits they bring,” said Mr Foley. With Victoria’s creative industries estimated to account for 200,000 jobs, and contributing around $22.7 billion to the state’s economy, the strategy looks to broaden this contribution by nurturing talent and creating new jobs.Development manager of the Melbourne International Jazz Festival Fotis Kapetopoulos told Neos Kosmos he agrees with the approach and described the consultative process as “fantastic”. “I like the integrated approach they’ve put in place. It’s bringing in the whole sector of creative activities. I think it’s really important,” he said. The minister’s discussion paper looks at how creative industries can build audiences and markets, cultivate skills and innovation, and realise opportunities provided by digital technologies.Greater support for Aboriginal arts and culture, along with funding for the arts across regional Victoria and outer metropolitan Melbourne are also on the agenda. “We need to have a discussion about heritage in terms of cultural diversity,” adds Kapetopoulos. “One area that has always been difficult for us to navigate is the role of the ethnic festival. How does it fit in the creative sector? The ethnic festival is often the first port of call an artist finds themselves in. Currently a lot of these are funded by local government and by the Victorian Multicultural Commission.“The overall strategy is a good thing. Having said that, at the end of the day, it depends how much money comes into the policy.”To oversee the development of the strategy and provide independent advice, Mr Foley has appointed a taskforce led by chief executive of Melbourne University Publishing, Louise Adler. Victorians are invited to take part in the discussion online and can attend public forums being held throughout Victoria during June and July. To add your voice to Victoria’s Creative Industries Strategy go to: strategy.creative.vic.gov.au Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Scientists realize they can use fire tornadoes to clean up oil spills

first_imgSometimes the most amazing discoveries can come from the most horrific accidents.Such is the case with the fire tornado, which has inspired scientists to work on a new flame called the Blue Whirl. A team of researchers coined the nickname after recreating a famous fire that started when lightning hit a Jim Beam warehouse in 2003 and spilled hundreds of thousands of gallons of whiskey into a nearby lake. The spirits set on fire, tornadoes spiraled off from the surface for nearly an hour, and the world held hands and wept.When researchers got done crying over this tragic loss, they realized that they had just seen something that actually could useful for removing oil spills. See, unlike “firenadoes,” which sometimes appear in wildfires and look equally cool (though far less tragic), blue whirls burn clean and don’t distribute soot around the environment. This is what the blue flame means- it’s burning so hot thanks to the liquor that everything is getting combusted. This would effectively burn off all of the oil without getting the rest of the water fouled up.So the scientists took a bath of water and ignited liquid fuel floating on top of it, sucking air from the top to create a vortex. It burned like a normal fire for a moment before settling into the Blue Whirl, as you can see below.Now the only trick is going to be finding a way to control these blue blurs. This is usually the part of the story where a mad scientist steals this research and uses it to control mankind, but if we’re lucky we might have a way to stop oil spills that can truly help the environment, and look pretty awesome while doing so.last_img read more

Joey of endangered kangaroo species born at San Diego Zoo Safari Park

first_img Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter Joey of endangered kangaroo species born at San Diego Zoo Safari Park Polly want a joey! Polly’s joey is peeking at the outside world and is ready for the spotlight. This is the first birth of an endangered Matschie’s tree kangaroo here at the Park, providing a much-needed ray of hope for the species. Details: https://t.co/Ux1sz8RHlp pic.twitter.com/xwiKVbWHVF— San Diego Zoo Safari Park (@sdzsafaripark) September 6, 2019SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The San Diego Zoo announced Friday that a Matschie’s tree kangaroo joey was born at the Safari Park earlier this year.The joey’s mother Polly gave birth in March in the Safari Park’s Walkabout Australia habitat. Animal care staff have yet to determine the joey’s gender or name it as it is still developing inside Polly’s pouch. The joey is the first Matschie’s tree kangaroo born at the Safari Park, according to the zoo.“We are thrilled with the birth of this Matschie’s tree kangaroo joey,” Safari Park keeper Breanne Barney said. “Due to the small population of Matschie’s tree kangaroos, this joey provides hope for the future of this species.”The species first arrived at the Safari Park last year as part of a program to save threatened species from extinction. The International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species lists the Matschie’s tree kangaroo as endangered and fewer than 2,500 remain in the wild due to hunting and habitat loss in its native Papua New Guinea.The joey was about the size of a jelly bean at birth and has more than doubled in size since then, according to the zoo. In total, the joey will stay in its mother’s pouch for as long as 10 months as it continues to nurse and develop. Even after being weaned at one year old, it will remain close to Polly for nearly two more years.“Polly is an excellent mother, consistently grooming her little one,” Barney said “We are really looking forward to the joey fully emerging soon.”Safari Park visitors can spot Polly and her joey at the Walkabout Australia exhibit. Access to the exhibit is included with admission to the park. September 6, 2019 Posted: September 6, 2019 KUSI Newsroom, KUSI Newsroom last_img read more

Pokemon Sword and Shield launch Nov 15 on Nintendo Switch

first_img Comments If you’re going to battle a legend then make sure to bring a big enough shield. 😉😉 pic.twitter.com/wwRxylEBYh— Bandai Namco US (@BandaiNamcoUS) June 5, 2019 E3 2019: The most anticipated games of gaming’s most anticipated show 17 Photos 2:13 Share your voice “In tall grass or caves, battles with wild Pokemon will occur when you run into Pokemon that you can see wandering around,” the company wrote. “You can also trigger battles by running into the ! icon that will pop up in patches of tall grass.”The Direct also showcased Dynamaxing, which lets Pokemon grow like Power Rangers baddies. This boosts their power, converting their moves into Max versions, but it can only be triggered once per battle and the Pokemon turns back to normal after three turns.Wild Dynamax Pokemon also underpin the games’ multiplayer Max Raid Battles — you can connect to other three other players in the wild area to take them down. The wild ones stay big for the whole battle, so you’ll need to work together to defeat them (and get a chance to catch them). It’s pretty similar to the raid system in Pokemon Go, and the wild Dynamax Pokemon will vary depending on the area and weather.in-game-screenshot-38The very cool looking Corviknight can fly you back to any town you’ve visited. Nintendo We met a few new characters too; Galar region champion Leon has a Charizard (suggesting excellent taste), his younger brother Hop is your rival, Professor Magnolia studies the Dynamax phenomenon, Sonia is her assistant (and granddaughter), while Milo is the grass gym leader.A few classic Pokemon showed up in the Direct too — we spotted Bewear, Hippowdown, Golurk, Butterfree, Snover, Stufful, Gyarados, Flygon, Growlithe, Inkay, Sneasel, Diglett, Clefable and Wobuffet.Sword and Shield, like every generation before it, will likely be very similar but feature slight differences. Usually, the stories are a little different and you can catch a slightly different selection of Pokemon so you can trade with your friends. Superfans can buy both versions in a double pack, with a gold steelbook apparently exclusive to Europe (since it only appeared in the UK version of the Direct).in-game-screenshot-14Wooloo is happy to meet you. Nintendo We got a bunch of details on the wider franchise from the Pokemon Company’s 2019 press conference last week — including the announcement of Pokemon Sleep — but Wednesday’s stream shifted the focus back to the core game series.Nintendo will have a more general Direct livestream on June 11 as part of the annual E3 gaming convention, which takes place in Los Angeles June 11-13, so we could get more Sword and Shield details there too.Check out our sister site GameSpot for more on Wednesday’s Pokemon Direct.Originally published June 4, 4:34 a.m. PT.Updated June 6, 2:15 a.m. PT: Adds Bandai Namco tweet. If you noticed that Zacian looked a lot like Great Grey Wolf Sif from Dark Souls, you’re not alone. Bandai Namco highlighted the similarity in a cheeky tweet on Wednesday.”If you’re going to battle a legend then make sure to bring a big enough shield,” the Dark Souls publisher wrote. Now playing: Watch this:center_img You can get to Zacian and Zamazenta on Nov. 15. Nintendo Pokemon Sword and Shield will appear on Nintendo Switch worldwide Nov. 15, the company revealed Wednesday, whipping Pokemaniacs everywhere into frenzy ahead of E3 2019.Nintendo gave us a 15-minute dose of fresh details about upcoming Switch games, showing off the Pokemon-embiggening Dynamax phenomenon, Max Raids and each game’s super cool legendary wolves.The mascot legendary good pups for Generation 8 are Zacian, which carries a sword in its mouth, and Zamazenta, which has a shield beard. The pair face off in forest, but appear to team up after sensing another presence — perhaps hinting at another unrevealed legendary? Regardless, you can expect Zacian to be exclusive to Sword, while Zamazenta is probably only in Shield. Nintendo shows latest Pokemon game, Sword and Shield 3 Video Games James Turner, art director at developer Game Freak, introduced us to a few new Pokemon species too: Wooloo the sheep, Gossifleur (which evolves into Eldegoss), snapping turtle Drednaw and Corviknight the flying taxi (which can take you back to any town you’ve visited).Producer Junichi Masuda and director Shigeru Ohmori talked about the Galar region’s “towns in which you find humans and Pokemon working together” and revealed details about the wild area, which is like an open-world version of previous games’ routes between cities. Wild Pokemon wander freely here like last year’s Pokemon Let’s Go, but Sword and Shield let you control the camera to see what’s around you. However, a tweet from the official Pokemon account hinted that encounters would work differently away from the wild area. Pokemon Go Nintendo Tagslast_img read more