SEOUL, South Korea – South Korean is studying ways to regulate speculative trading in crypto currencies as the latest surge in prices stokes a craze over bitcoins.The country’s financial regulator said Friday that it has ruled out using bitcoin for derivative products. The decision effectively bans investing in bitcoin futures that will start trading on the Chicago Board Options Exchange this weekend.It’s part of a backlash against digital currencies in some Asian countries, even as Japan embraces their use.Indonesia’s Central Bank spokesman Agusman Zainal said Friday the Indonesian monetary authority will issue a rule prohibiting the use of bitcoin as a means of payment by 2018. At the moment, it is reviewing the situation, he said.South Koreans tend to be tech savvy and used to trading cash in online games. Many are betting their incomes and even retirement packages on bitcoins and other virtual currencies. The country has just 50 million people but accounts for about one-fifth of global bitcoin trades.The price of bitcoin surged more than 20 per cent overnight to top $17,000 before falling back to $15418.19 by late Friday.Meanwhile, South Korean internet users were rushing to seek online advice about which crypto currencies to pick or how to download apps.The lure is apparent: One bitcoin was worth less than $1,000 at the start of the year.“People are probably affected by those who say they made a lot of money from bitcoins,” said Kim Do-hyung, a 21-year-old who invested in bitcoins and another crypto currency called stratis. “Young people don’t make a lot of money. It looks like easy money for them,” he said.Kim, who just finished the country’s mandatory military service last month, put all his monthly salary saved up from his two-years of duty into crypto currencies in November. His profit surged four-fold, reaping enough to pay his tuition when he returns to college next year and pay his rent in Seoul, he said by phone from a city of Masan, 298 kilometres south of Seoul.Earlier this week, South Korea’s justice ministry said it would consider ways to regulate crypto currency exchanges and plans to devise stiff penalties for crimes related to such transactions.Local investors believe the crypto currency boom is still in its early stages.“Virtual currency just made a start in South Korea so I think the price will go further up,” Kim said.
9 December 2009The United Nations official leading efforts to tackle malaria is visiting Nigeria and Kenya this week, the two nations which together account for one third of the estimated 1 million deaths worldwide from the deadly disease. Ray Chambers kicked off his visit today in Nigeria, which has achieved “transformative” progress over the one year that has elapsed since he last visited the country, according to a news release issued by the office of the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Malaria.Close to half of the population now has access to a mosquito net. In addition, a month-by-month distribution strategy has been established to ensure that nets are delivered across Nigeria’s 36 states until universal coverage is achieved by the end of 2010.Ensuring universal access to malaria-control tools – insecticide-treated mosquito nets, indoor spraying with insecticides, and effective medication – by 2010 is critical for both countries to reach the Secretary-General’s goal of near-zero global malaria deaths by 2015.“In just one year, Nigeria has positioned itself to meet the Secretary-General’s goal of universal coverage by 2010. With one quarter of the world’s malaria deaths occurring here, Nigeria bears the most onerous malaria burden. But the proficiency with which the Government is closing in on malaria is a bold statement that across sub-Saharan Africa, the Secretary-General’s goal is achievable,” said Mr. Chambers.“All nations who feel that the challenge may be too daunting can look to Nigeria and understand that rapid progress is possible,” he added.Nigeria is working to achieve funding for all 70 million nets needed for universal coverage. Some 60 million nets have already been funded thanks to resources from, among others, the UN-backed Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and the World Bank.The country is also working to mobilize communities to assist in the deliver of the nets and to encourage the use of such life-saving tools.Tomorrow Mr. Chambers will join the Nigerian Inter-Faith Action Association as it launches its Faith United for Health campaign in the capital, Abuja, which seeks to empower around 300,000 religious leaders to boost the use of nets in their communities. Meanwhile, in Kenya, malaria has been on the decline but a “final push” toward universal coverage of prevention and treatment is needed to protect the gains made, according to the Special Envoy’s office, which added that the country is facing a “critical” shortage of funding for 11 million nets that must be addressed.“With Kenyan leadership, and the commitment of the Global Fund, the World Bank, UNICEF [UN Children’s Fund] and others, a potential health crisis can be averted, by ensuring that over 20 million Kenyans are not left unprotected from malaria,” Mr. Chambers stated.
TORONTO — Canada’s largest retirement fund manager is pushing to have more women on corporate boards because diversity makes for better business decisions, CPPIB chief executive Mark Machin said Friday.“This is a high priority for us,” Machin said in an interview after Canada Pension Plan Investment Board released its second-quarter financial report.“We think that diversity leads to better decision-making and I think there’s a growing body of academic and practical evidence that leads to that (conclusion).”CPP reform to help lift plan’s assets above $15 trillion by 2090: analysisCPPIB part of group buying US power producer Calpine Corp. for US$5.6BCPPIB and Brazilian partner to spend up to US$400 million on office purchasesAs a result, CPPIB — which manages more than $325 billion for the Canada Pension Plan — voted 34 times this year against specific directors who chaired board’s nomination committees that failed to include women as candidates.Although none of the 34 targeted directors were defeated, Machin said that CPPIB believes it has a responsibility to take a leadership role and “would encourage other people to do the same.”The CPPIB, itself, has an equal number of male and female directors on its 12-member board, which is chaired by Heather Munroe-Blum, a former president of McGill University.Machin said he thinks there’s broad support in Canada for gender-parity but acknowledged that it can take a long time to change a board’s makeup for various reasons, including the desire for stability and the right set of skills among directors.“But when you actually push on it, I find that some of those can melt away,” Machin said.Earlier Friday, the CPPIB announced a slight increase in its net asset value of its CPP Fund, as positive international stock performances were moderated by negative Canadian bond and foreign currency returns.The fund’s assets were $328.2 billion at the end of the second quarter compared to $326.5 billion at the end of the first quarter of its fiscal 2018.CPPIB took in $2.3 billion in net income after all costs, less $600 million in net pension plan outflows to the Canada Pension Plan — a national program funded by contributions from employers and employees.On an annual basis, the Canada Pension Plan puts more into the CPPIB’s funds than it takes out but the flow routinely goes the other way during the second half of the calendar year.The portfolio garnered net nominal 10-year returns of 6.9 per cent and five-year returns of 11.8 per cent. Those results are above the 3.9 per cent average return required to sustain benefits for 75 years.Still, the CPPIB acknowledged that its second-quarter returns were eroded by a strengthening Canadian dollar.The loonie rose 6.6 per cent against the U.S. dollar over the past six months, as it does not hedge foreign currencies back to the Canadian dollar.
LONDON — The European Union’s competition chief is getting a new term – with expanded powers – in a move that underlines how the bloc’s battle to regulate big tech companies is only just beginning.Margrethe Vestager, who angered the Trump administration by imposing multibillion-dollar penalties on the likes of Google and Apple, was reappointed Tuesday for a second five-year term as the bloc’s competition commissioner.The Danish politician’s tasks will include strengthening competition enforcement in all sectors, stepping up efforts to detect cases of market abuse by big companies, speeding up investigations and helping strengthen co-operation with her global counterparts.Perhaps ominously for the big tech companies that she has cracked down on, Vestager is also getting extra clout.Ursula von der Leyen, the incoming president of the EU’s powerful executive arm, promoted Vestager to a commission executive vice-president overseeing the EU’s digital innovation and leadership efforts, including artificial intelligence.“Margarethe Vestager will co-ordinate the whole agenda and be the commissioner for competition,” von der Leyen said at a press conference . Von der Leyen has said that by the end of her first 100 days in office, she wants to draw up legislation for a European approach on the “human and ethical implications” of artificial intelligence.The Computer & Communications Industry Association, a lobby group with members including Google, Facebook and Amazon, reacted cautiously to Vestager’s reappointment.“We encourage the new Commissioners to assess the impact of all the recent EU tech regulation to ensure that future legislation will be evidence-based, proportionate and beneficial,” it said in a statement.Since taking office in 2014, Vestager earned a reputation as Silicon Valley’s nemesis for a string of tough enforcement decisions against tech firms __ efforts that may have helped inspire U.S. authorities, who recently opened a raft of investigations after previously taking a hands-off approach.In the past week, separate multistate investigations have been opened into Google’s alleged “potential monopolistic behaviour” and Facebook market dominance. Months earlier, the U.S. Justice Department opened its own sweeping investigation of big tech companies.Vestager slapped Google with 8.25 billion euros ($9.1 billion) in fines for repeatedly abusing its market dominance to stifle competition, in antitrust cases involving the online giant’s shopping search results, Google’s Android software and Adsense ad service. In the Android case, Google made changes so that EU smartphone users can choose browsers and search engines, a result for consumers that Vestager likes to tout.She also ordered Apple to pay back up to 13 billion euros ($15 billion) in back taxes from Ireland, which prompted President Donald Trump to call her the “tax lady” who “really hates the U.S.”This summer, Vestager took action against two more U.S. tech companies. She fined U.S. chipmaker Qualcomm $271 million, accusing it of “predatory pricing” to drive a competitor out of the market almost a decade ago.And she opened a formal investigation into whether Amazon uses data from independent retailers to gain an unfair advantage over third party merchant. EU investigators are looking at whether Amazon uses data from activity on its platform to favour its own products for sale.Vestager did not speak publicly Tuesday but recently flagged her latest area of tech concern.“We look at new services even before they’re introduced,” Vestager said in a speech .She added that her team is scrutinizing Facebook’s new digital currency, Libra. “We’re looking at whether those proposals create risks for competition, so we can be ready to act swiftly if an intervention were to prove necessary.”___For all of AP’s tech coverage, visit https://apnews.com/apf-technology___Follow Kelvin Chan at www.twitter.com/chanmanKelvin Chan, The Associated Press
OTTAWA — The government of Canada has been increasing its use of paid Facebook advertisements over the last three years, spending tens of millions of dollars on boosted posts, videos and ad campaigns, new figures tabled in Parliament show.From Jan. 1, 2016 to March 2018, federal government departments and agencies spent more than $24.4 million on Facebook and Instagram ads, promotions and sponsored posts and videos.The data, tabled earlier this month in the House of Commons, includes a breakdown of spending by each government department and agency, showcasing a growing government reliance on Facebook for promoting events and publicizing key government messages and policy initiatives.The biggest spender was Destination Canada, which expensed more than $9.2 million for promoting tourism in Canada to Facebook users during the designated time frame.The Immigration Department, meanwhile, spent more than $2 million on campaigns, including some international ads promoting visa requirements and economic immigration streams. It also spent $47,497 domestically to provide information about the Syrian refugee program “in response to the outpouring of support and interest in how to get involved from Canadians,” the department stated.In 2016-17 the federal procurement department reported that government spending on digital advertising surpassed television for the first time ever. Digital media represented 54.7 per cent of all advertising expenditures last year, with social media representing 23.3 per cent.The data tabled this month shows agencies that use Facebook for promotion have been increasing their spending on quizzes, campaigns and so-called boosted posts, saying they need to reach people where they are — and more than 20 million people in Canada are on social media.“More and more Canadians are receiving their news and information via social networks. It is important to connect with Canadians on the channels they are using,” Environment Minister Catherine McKenna said in her written response tabled last week.“With sponsored posts and social network advertising, even small funding amounts can have a significant impact. All of Environment and Climate Change Canada’s paid posts or promoted videos performed better and received more impressions than if it was only posted organically.”But Bob Cox, chair of News Media Canada and publisher of the Winnipeg Free Press, said it doesn’t make sense for the government to be using taxpayer dollars to support foreign-owned digital companies like Facebook and Google.“It drives me crazy no one questions this, and I don’t know why because there used to be a time when government would make an effort to use Canadian-owned media,” Cox said.As a proponent of the print news media, Cox argues print publications in Canada have greater reach and trust levels among the public than social media companies, and that print advertisements are far more effective than fleeting online ads.Government spending on foreign-owned advertising also hurts not only domestic media companies already suffering from dwindling subscribers and advertising revenues, but also the Canadian economy, which is out millions of dollars that are flowing across the border.“The federal government is putting money into companies that are simply taking it out of the country and they’re not re-circulating it, they’re not paying taxes and they’re not contributing to the national economy… that’s the biggest loss from the decline in traditional media.”Meanwhile, the growth in federal spending on Facebook comes at a time when the company has come under fire over the Cambridge Analytica data breach.Canada’s ethics committee has been studying data privacy issues following the scandal that allegedly saw the personal information of some 87 million Facebook users — including more than 620,000 Canadians — improperly accessed for political-campaigning purposes ahead of U.K.’s Brexit vote and the 2016 U.S. presidential election.The company faced tough questioning by governments here, in the U.S. and abroad about privacy concerns and the spread of “fake news.”Company CEO Mark Zuckerberg apologized Tuesday during an appearance before the European Parliament in Brussels for how his company handled issues related to fake news, foreign interference in elections and the privacy of Facebook users.Nura Jabagi, a public scholar at Concordia University specializing in business technology management, says the federal government is simply following suit with what’s happening in the private sector when it comes to jumping aboard the social media advertising train.But the fear surrounding issues like the Cambridge Analytica breach does diminish public confidence in such websites, which is where traditional media may still have the upper hand.“Trust is a key factor in communication,” Jabagi said.“In the current climate … traditional media like newspapers are trusted and reputable sources for government audience.”
Opening the Reykjavik Conference on Responsible Fisheries in the Marine Ecosystem, Dr. Jacques Diouf warned that the world’s oceans were exhaustible. “Man is really not giving the fish in the sea much chance of escaping the fishing gear and allowing time to grow and reproduce,” he said, adding that “there are too many vessels chasing too few fish.” According to FAO, the challenge is to determine how to manage the fisheries to ensure sustainable utilization of the food available in the oceans for the benefit of present and future generations, without harming the ecosystem’s capacity to support human life. The Reykjavik Conference, organized by the Government of Iceland and FAO, aims to gather and review the best available knowledge on marine ecosystem issues, identify means by which ecosystem considerations can be included in capture fisheries management, and lay out strategies for the future. A final declaration from the meeting, in which over 400 delegates from 70 countries participated, is expected to be submitted to the FAO Conference in November and to the 10th Session of the UN Conference on Environment and Development, also known as “UNCED+10,” in September 2002. In other news from FAO, the agency warned in a statement today that intensive land cultivation methods using tractors and ploughs were a major cause of severe soil loss and land degradation in many developing countries, especially in warmer areas where the topsoil layer is thin. Land degradation also occurs in industrialized countries due to exaggerated mechanized tillage using powerful heavy machines. If farmers applied ecologically sound cultivation and the concept of “Conservation Agriculture,” millions of hectares of agricultural land could be protected or saved from degradation and erosion, FAO said on the occasion of the opening of the World Congress on Conservation Agriculture, taking place in Madrid, Spain, from 1 to 5 October. “Conservation Agriculture” involves drastically reducing tillage and keeping a protective soil cover of leaves, stems and stalks from the previous crop, which shields the soil surface from heat, wind and rain, keeps the soils cooler and reduces moisture losses by evaporation. Less tillage also means lower fuel and labour costs, and farmers need to spend less on heavy machinery, FAO said.
The drugmaker AbbVie has reached a deal worth roughly $55 billion to combine with British counterpart Shire and become the latest U.S. company to seek an overseas haven from corporate income tax rates back home.The companies said Friday that Shire shareholders will receive cash and stock valued at about 53.19 pounds ($91.07) for each of their shares. They will control about 25 per cent of a new company created as part of the deal. AbbVie shareholders will hold the remaining 75 per cent.That new company will be incorporated on the British island of Jersey, where Shire currently is headquartered.U.S.-based multi-national companies looking to grow through acquisitions have been searching more fervently in recent years for these overseas combinations known as inversions. But the deals are drawing growing concern from President Barack Obama and members of Congress because they can cost the United States billions of dollars in tax revenue.At 35 per cent, the United States has the highest corporate income tax rate in the industrialized world, and it also taxes income earned overseas and then brought home. That causes some companies to park millions of dollars in overseas accounts.AbbVie said Friday it expects a tax rate of about 13 per cent by 2016 for the new company created in the deal. A statement from the drugmakers also said the deal gives the resulting company “flexible access to its global cash flows.”AbbVie has said the new tax rate would represent a drop from its current rate of roughly 22 per cent.Inversions can take place if shareholders of the foreign entity involved retain more than a 20 per cent ownership in the newly merged business. Legally, the foreign company might acquire the U.S. business or the two create a new entity. But the U.S. company often maintains both its corporate headquarters and control of the company.This overseas move has grown more common among health care companies. Last month, U.S. medical device maker Medtronic Inc. said that it had agreed to buy Ireland-based competitor Covidien for $42.9 billion in cash and stock. The combined company would have executive offices in Ireland, which has a 12.5 per cent corporate income tax rate.The largest drugstore chain in the United States, Walgreen Co., also is considering a similar move with Swiss health and beauty retailer Alliance Boots. Walgreen bought a 45 per cent stake in Alliance Boots a few years ago and has an option to buy the rest of the company.AbbVie, which makes the blockbuster anti-inflammatory drug Humira, had made several unsolicited takeover bids for Shire before the two companies started talking about a possible deal earlier this month. Shire makes the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder medication Vyvanse as well as rare disease and gastrointestinal treatments.Shire said Friday its board recommends that shareholders vote for the latest offer, and the deal will create “a well-positioned and focused specialty biopharmaceutical company.”U.S.-traded shares of Shire PLC fell $2.84 to $250.60 before markets opened Friday and after the deal was announced. Shares of North Chicago, Illinois-based AbbVie Inc. slipped 77 cents to $52.75. AbbVie, Shire agree on approx $55 billion combination, will form new UK incorporated company AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by Tom Murphy, The Associated Press Posted Jul 18, 2014 5:51 am MDT
Brock’s list of international partnerships continues to grow.The University took another step in strengthening its global connections on Sept. 4 by signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the University of Physical Education (UPE) in Budapest, Hungary.Established in 1925, the UPE is one of the oldest and most successful higher education institutions in the field of physical education. It is one of only a handful of institutions in the world that combines elite-level athletic training with sports science academic offerings.Located in the heart of Europe, in the Carpathian Basin, the UPE campus features 16 sports facilities and laboratories, practice-oriented training programs, and an international coaching course offering training in more than 20 Olympic sports. There are also major development plans underway to expand on the world-class facilities already available.Olena Spesyvkh, Vice-Dean of Science, Borys Grinchenko Kyiv University; Brock University Applied Health Sciences Dean Peter Tiidus; Mar Gutierrez-Colon Planar, Rovira I. Virgili University, Tarragona, Spain; a student from the University of Physical Education (UPE); and Judit Kadar, Director, University of Physical Education – International Relations Center at the signing ceremony in Budapest, Hungary for a new agreement between Brock and UPE.The agreement was facilitated by Peter Tiidus, Dean of Brock’s Faculty of Applied Health Sciences.Similar programming between both institutions, such as Sport Management, Kinesiology, Recreation and Leisure Studies, and Physical Education, made this a perfect partnership opportunity for Brock, Tiidus noted.UPE also shares a similar vision to Brock University on internationalization, encouraging mobility for their domestic students and faculty, as well as incoming international students. They also seek to enhance their foreign language training programs and research-based international collaborations.Over the next five years of the agreement, UPE and Brock will look to develop a number of opportunities for their faculty and students.In the short term, both institutions will look to implement new exchange opportunities and short-term study abroad programs for faculty, students and student-athletes.“Many of UPE’s programs are taught in English,” Tiidus said. “The potential for scholarship opportunities through the European Union will help make the idea of studying abroad less intimidating for Brock students.”There’s also the potential for creating new dual-degree programs in Physical Education, Kinesiology, Recreation and Leisure Studies, and Sport Management, as well as possible coaching clinics and faculty/staff led programs or exchanges in areas such as rowing, fencing and aquatics.“The agreement provides Brock students with the opportunity to learn about international governing bodies and sport systems,” Tiidus said. “Gaining international experience is becoming an invaluable asset for students in today’s globalized society.”The agreement will also look to facilitate possible future doctoral internships, tutoring master’s and doctoral students, and research collaboration between institutions.More information on Brock’s other international partner institutions can be found on the Brock International website.
The Toronto Maple Leafs are hoping some of the Raptors’ luck at Scotiabank Arena rubs off on them Wednesday night when they return to home ice, looking to take a commanding lead in their first-round playoff series against the Boston Bruins.Listen to the game starting at 7 p.m. on 680 NEWS. Regular programming including breaking news, traffic and weather can be heard online and on the 680 NEWS and Radio Player Canada apps. The Leafs have a 2-1 series lead thanks in part to Mitch Marner blocking two shots in the dying minutes of Game 3. Auston Matthews also had a goal and an assist for his first points of the playoffs.The Leafs downed the Bruins 4-1 in the series opener at TD Garden before falling by the same score in Game 2 on a night where Boston dominated, especially on the physical side.Boston’s David Pastrnak, Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron combined for 30 points in Boston’s seven-game victory over Toronto last spring, but only have six at even strength so far in this series — including just two at 5-on-5.The Leafs have held the Bruins’ big guns to 40 shots attempts at even strength, with just 17 having hit the target.The Eastern Conference quarterfinal series switches back to Boston on Friday for Game 5. Game 6, if necessary, would be back in Toronto on Sunday.The winner of the Boston-Toronto series will go on to play the Columbus Blue Jackets.With files from Sportsnet and The Canadian Press BROWSE NHL playoffs | toronto maple leafs
Here at Geek.com we’ve spent a lot of time with NeverWet, the amazing superhydrophic coating from Rustoleum. At $20 and available at Home Depot stores across the US, NeverWet is incredibly accessible and an ideal subject for home projects. We’ve tested NeverWet on clothing and shoes and cardboard and all sorts of other things but, in what I freely admit was a huge oversight on our part, we’ve yet to test it out on electronic devices. Luckily, the team at Adafruit took the time to do extensive testing.In our defense, I’d just note that NeverWet’s preview video might have used a coated smartphone in a torture test, but the product’s packaging clearly states that NeverWet was not designed to be used with electronics. The FAQ page could not be more clear about this:3. Can NeverWet be used on electronics?No, NeverWet should not be used on electronics. Being good geeks we clearly should have ignored that, as it’s clearly there to cover Rustoleum in the case that you destroy your new iPad or something else expensive and send your class action-loving lawyer after the company. Regardless, here are electronic devices covered in NeverWet and then submerged, misted, sprayed, and hosed down with water…The video features the Raspberry Pi, LED light strips, Adafruit’s Citi bike helmet, the company’s Flora wearable electronics board, an Arduino Micro and a few LEDs, all sopping wet. The verdict? Based on what we see in the video, NeverWet actually gets the job done. The Raspberry Pi in the video survives a full submersion while operating, and the Flora take a full-on blast from a hose and continues to work. NeverWet might not be recommended for electronics, but it actually did a great job with these worst-case scenarios.So, why wouldn’t you want to use NeverWet on your gadgets? First off, and mainly, NeverWet leaves a tacky, chalky film on whatever it coats, which is actually a little bit gross. It doesn’t appear in Rustoleum’s demo videos, but it’s quite apparent when you use the product. Part of the film will wash off the first time water hits it, but some always remains. This helps with spills, but who knows what it’s doing to your gadgets (or to you). Secondly, NeverWet degrades over time, so your device might be fine for a few minutes or a few hours, but eventually the coating will fail and your toy is going to be wrecked.These details are notable, but not enough to prevent NeverWet from being the best water-resistant coating for electronic devices that I can think of, short of a waterproof case. VIEW PHOTO GALLERY NeverWet electronicsNeverWet electronicsNeverWet electronicsNeverwet PackagingNeverWet DryNeverWet Base CoatneverwetshoesNeverWet Featured
Are you a creative who would relish the opportunity to spend a month working and researching in Athens? The Australian Archaeological Institute of Athens (AAIA) is once again running its Contemporary Creative Residency program in the Greek capital. First begun in 2014, the initiative is designed to give professional artists and writers a chance to expand their work and practice through direct engagement with Greek life, culture and history.Applicants are required to be working in literary or visual media in Australia, and can be either emerging or established artists who have a strong interest in ancient, medieval, modern and/or contemporary Greek culture.The award includes accommodation in the AAIA Hostel, a spacious three-bedroom apartment located at the foot of the Acropolis, for the month of December 2016, as well as access to libraries, museums and archaeological sites.Applications for the Contemporary Creative Residency programme in Athens are due by Friday 21 October, 2016. For further information and details, visit http://sydney.edu.au/arts/aaia/research/ccr.shtml Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram
Stay on target Scientists Discover Possible Interstellar VisitorWater Vapor Detected on Potentially ‘Habitable’ Planet Building on President Emmanuel Macron’s plans to establish a space command, French officials have revealed a new cosmic self-defense and surveillance program.The project aims to develop nano-satellites equipped with guns and lasers, according to France’s Le Point magazine.Defense Minister Florence Parly said the country is not interested in an arms race. Rather, the creation of a “space command” is part of a strategy to bolster defense capabilities.“If we want to be able to carry out real military operations in space, then we need to develop the ability to act alone,” Parly said on Thursday, as quoted by Reuters.At its inception, the new directive will comprise 220 people at the National Center for Space Studies (CNES) in Toulouse, France. The project will add another €700 million ($778.6 million) to the military’s existing €4.3 billion ($4.8 billion) budget for its 2019-2025 program.Moving forward, next-generation satellites will be equipped with cameras to identify possible cosmic attackers; subsequent spacecraft will feature weapons (like submachine guns and lasers) to fight back.There was also talk of nano-satellite “watchers”: swarms of tiny capsules placed around strategic objects to patrol and protect French technology—”fearsome little detectors that will be the eyes of our most valuable satellites,” according to the minister.Parly is not messing around.“If our satellites are threatened, we will consider blinding those of our opponents,” she said, as reported by Task & Purpose. “This may involve the use of power lasers deployed from our satellites or from our patrol nano-satellites.”The move comes five months after President Trump signed a directive to establish a new branch of the U.S. military dedicated to handling threats in space.The United States Space Force, as described in an official White House document, would be authorized to “organize, train, and equip military space forces … to ensure unfettered access to, and freedom to operate in, space, and to provide vital capabilities to joint and coalition forces in peacetime and across the spectrum of conflict.”Before anyone can ensure America’s sovereignty among the stars, though, the proposal must be OKed by Congress.France, meanwhile, is calling on its European partners to aid in the fight against celestial enemies, counting, “in particular,” on Germany “to be at the heart of space surveillance.”“Having a reinforced space defense is absolutely essential,” Parly said in a statement published by Le Point (and translated by Google). “It is our freedom of appreciation, access and action in space that is at stake.”More on Geek.com:Flyboard Inventor Fails to Cross Channel on HoverboardWreckage of French Submarine Found 51 Years After DisappearanceLightsaber Dueling Is Now An Official Sport in France
Wait, I owe the IRS?The first tax filing season under the new federal tax law is proving to be surprising, confusing — and occasionally frightening — for some Americans, especially those accustomed to getting money back from the government.Take Andy Kraft and Amy Elias of Portland. The couple had grown comfortable getting a small refund each year, a few hundred dollars or more. Then they found out they owe $10,160 this year.“I will never forget the moment, I thought ‘We look good’ and then we added in the next W-2 and my jaw hit the floor,” Kraft said. “There was no way I wanted to believe that what I was looking at was accurate.”President Donald Trump promised a reduction in taxes with the new law. And by most measures, the majority of Americans will see one. The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center projected the tax law would reduce individual income taxes by about $1,260 on average, although it benefits higher earners more.So not everyone will see a massive tax bill or a drop in their refund. Some people already saw the benefit in the form of bigger paychecks. That’s because the law forced employers to change what they withheld. But the system is far from perfect, and many workers didn’t have enough in taxes set aside. Now, the IRS wants that money.
Today, Ladies’ Home Journal announced a “dramatic” redesign (isn’t it funny how all magazine redesigns are called “dramatic”?) and, in a somewhat unusual move, said the magazine will have a “bold new voice” and editorial philosophy.Ladies Home Journal will now be “modern, clean, approachable and uplifting,” says new editor Sally Lee. (A statement like that makes you wonder what, exactly, the magazine was before—“medieval, dirty, unapproachable and depressing”?)It’s the second redesign in roughly a year for LHJ, the last one coming under former editor Diane Salvatore in 2008.Lee, who was appointed editor by Meredith in July, has repositioned the 3.8 million circulation LHJ with new sections and columns to promote a “look good, do good and feel great” philosophy. Coverlines “will convey positive messages and the photography will be fresh and relatable.” While some of these editorial refreshers may be welcome—like a new technology section and a modern “Answer Lady” column—some of the new editorial “franchises,” like “Never Underestimate the Power of a Woman” and “Can This Marriage Be Saved?” seem pretty dated, particularly for a magazine that was founded 1883.
Artist’s concept of a near-earth asteroid. NASA/JPL-CalTech An asteroid the size of a refrigerator was spotted by telescopes in Hawaii on Saturday, just before it collided with Earth’s atmosphere and burned as a fireball in the sky due south of Puerto Rico. The harmless space rock, officially named 2019 MO, never had a chance of making it to the ground or doing much damage, as it was only about a tenth the size of the bolide that exploded in the atmosphere over Russia in 2013. You can see the fireball flash in imagery from NOAA/NASA satellites below: Small Asteroid (NEOCP A10eoM1) impacted Earth on 2019 June 22https://t.co/LqrbGzpfJc@Yeqzids @pgbrown @frankie57pr @fallingstarIfA @PS1NEOwatch @michael_w_busch #astronomy #asteroids pic.twitter.com/n1xACVQBvR— Ernesto Guido (@comets77) June 25, 2019 2 NASA Space How NASA’s DART could save the planet from a killer asteroid According to the International Astronomical Union’s Minor Planet Center, 2019 MO impacted the atmosphere at around 5:30 p.m. EDT Saturday. Astronomer Peter Brown from Western University in Ontario noted that the impact was recorded at the equivalent explosive power of 5,000 tons of TNT. Of course, the same-day notice provided in the case of 2019 MO wouldn’t be too helpful in making preparations if it were a much bigger asteroid smacking into the sky. Fortunately NASA and other agencies have mandated goals to work toward tracking as many of the biggest rocks out there as possible. Comments 3:17 Share your voice Now playing: Watch this: Good sized fireball off the South coast of Jamaica infrasonically on Jun 22 near 2130 UT. Airwaves recorded by Bermuda infrasound station 2000 km North show periods which are consistent with 3-5 kT bolide from a small multi-meter sized NEA impact. @IMOmeteors @amsmeteors pic.twitter.com/zNbHQLGijB— Peter Brown (@pgbrown) June 24, 2019 Tags According to fireball and bolide data from NASA, our atmosphere is struck by a meteor this size or larger roughly once a year. What’s most interesting about 2019 MO, though, is the fact that it was spotted by telescopes beforehand. That’s only happened four times in history, according to Italian amateur astronomer Ernesto Guido.The other three times all happened in the last 12 years, including asteroid 2018 LA that made it all the way to the ground in Africa. This doesn’t mean space rocks are getting more aggressive in the 21st century, but that astronomers’ equipment and techniques are getting better at spotting incoming asteroids. Sci-Tech
Alfie Price, sixth from the right, poses with family and friends after he was honored as a language warrior during a Nov. 22, 2016, awards ceremony. (Photo courtesy Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska)What makes a modern warrior?According to Southeast Alaska’s largest tribal organization, a warrior is someone who fights to preserve subsistence rights or Native languages. It’s also someone who works for clean water or cares for other people’s children.Listen NowFour people or families were named as modern warriors by the Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska during a Nov. 22 Native American Heritage Month Celebration in Juneau.Organizers said those recognized represented many other tribal citizens who also go above and beyond to advocate, protest and protect.Alfie Price co-leads a Tsimshian language practice group in Juneau. He’s also learning the Tlingit and Haida languages. But when he accepted an award naming him a Warrior for Protecting our Languages, he spoke in Eyak, a Prince William Sound Native language that’s considered extinct.“I just wanted this room full of people to hear a few words of Eyak tonight,” Price said.Price, who also is Tlingit, talked about the process of learning the language of his Tsimshian ancestors.“An unexpected side effect of learning Sm’algyax especially is I feel my own healing,” Price said. “The hurts and the things that made me bitter in my life are falling away. They’re becoming light on my shoulders.”Miciana Hutcherson speaks after being named Warrior for Protecting Our Sacred Lands and Waters at a recent ceremony. (Photo courtesy CCTHITA)At the ceremony, Miciana Hutcherson was named Warrior for Protecting Our Sacred Lands and Waters.Hutcherson is an activist who joined the Standing Rock Sioux protesting construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. She said the campaign’s motto, “Water is Life,” is also important in her Tlingit homeland.That includes protecting trans-boundary rivers from industrial development on the Canadian side of the border.“We’re standing up for our inherent rights in a way that we’ve never seen before,” Hutcherson said. “We’re giving our kids and future generations something to be proud of and ensuring that we’ll leave something behind tangible for them to hold onto and that’s each other.”Also honored was Harold Martin, who was named Warrior for Protecting Our Traditional Harvesting Rights.Harold Martin was named Warrior for Protecting Our Traditional Harvesting Rights. (Photo courtesy CCTHITA)The longtime central council subsistence director led numerous efforts to continue or preserve traditional harvests of seals, otters and other marine life.Martin, a former logger, stressed the importance of secondary schooling.“Education opens all kinds of doors. It’s never too late to go back to school,” Martin said. “I was 40 years old when we decided to go back to school in 1974. And I was able to go to work and still retire.”Veronica and Mike Hoyle were named Warriors for Caring for Our Children.Surrounded by his large family, Mike Hoyle talked about fostering kids and taking responsibility to raise them.“We never had any thoughts of adopting,” Hoyle said. “We just wanted to do the right thing, when people need a place to sleep. You just look out for your family.” Watch the celebration program, which begins about 48 minutes into the video:
Vijayawada: The members of Andhra Pradesh State Government Employees Mutually Aided Cooperative House Building Society Ltd organised an annual conference at PB Siddhartha Auditorium here on Saturday. Addressing the gathering, the society president A Subbaraju explained the development of the society in the past financial year. He said that with 3,700 memberships, this society is one of the biggest. Also Read – AP Cabinet to meet on September 4 Advertise With Us He said that they have planned the foundation programme on Dasara festival and the Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy will be chief guest of the occasion at the land allocated by the government under the limits of Ketanakonda Panchayat. He further said that the allocated land close to Amaravati which takes 20 minutes travel time. He said that they will get the approvals from APCRDA within three months and will plan to develop the layout by February 2020. The name of the layout is Sriharipuram Employees Colony. The draft design of the layout was also released on the occasion to the members. The society secretary, Nadendla Viswanatha Naidu, vice-president Manne Sarada and other directors were present.
– / 7 Only five years ago, the county’s animal shelter had to euthanize the vast majority of the animals it took in. The live release rate was a meager 15 percent.That improved to nearly 80 percent last year and more than 90 percent so far this year.Harris County Judge Ed Emmett said that rate can only be sustained if they have more space.“We can’t move the pets through fast enough in the facility we have,” he said at the groundbreaking ceremony in north Houston. “So that’s why if we can get this up and running in the next year, that’ll be great.”When the existing shelter was built in 1986, it was designed to hold 12,000 animals a year. In reality, about 18,000 come through each year.The new facility will double capacity, give dogs and cats more space and have separate entrances for adoptions, admissions and the medical area.Voters approved the construction in a $24 million bond election in 2015. 00:00 /00:51 Share Listen To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: X
The g, r, and i composite HSC images before (left) and after (right) the explosion of HSC16aayt. Credit: Moriya et al., 2019. HSC16aay was first identified by the Subaru/Hyper Suprime-Cam (HSC) transient survey as part of Subaru Strategic Program (SSP) during observations conducted between November 2016 and April 2017. Subsequent observations of this transient have shown that its light curve evolved very slowly and that the apparent nearest galaxy on the sky had a photometric redshift of 1.45. Taking into account these two facts, the researchers believe that HSC16aay may be a high-redshift supeluminous supernova (SN).In order to verify this assumption, a group of astronomers led by Takashi J. Moriya of National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) has performed follow-up observations of HSC16aay using the HSC instrument and the Gemini South telescope in Chile. The results provided more evidence suggesting the supernova nature of this source.”Spectra of HSC16aayt show a strong narrow emission line and we classify it as a Type IIn supernova,” the astronomers wrote in the paper.This conclusion of Moriya’s team is due to the fact that Type IIn supernovae are a subclass of hydrogen-rich SNe showing narrow emission lines in their spectra. Astronomers assume that these narrow lines originate from the interaction between ejecta from supernovae and dense circumstellar media (CSM) formed by the progenitors before their explosion.In particular, when it comes to the properties of HSC16aay’s light curve, the researchers found the peak optical magnitude at likely around −19.9 mag, which is common for Type IIn supernovae. The transient shows a very slow photometric evolution with a rise time of over 100 days, and the optical magnitude change in 400 days remains within 0.6 mag. The redshift of HSC16aay was measured to be approximately 0.68.In general, the astronomers noted that overall properties of HSC16aayt (which received supernova designation SN 2016jiu) are similar to those of the other Type IIn supernova known as SN 2008iy, but HSC16aayt was found to be more luminous.Furthermore, the location of HSC16aayt was calculated at about 16,300 light years away from its host galaxy center. According to the authors of the study, such a relatively large distance may indicate that the object is an isolated Type IIn SN, however, other explanation cannot be excluded.”HSC16aayt might be another example of isolated Type IIn supernovae, although the possible existence of underlying star-forming activity of the host galaxy at the supernova location is not excluded,” the astronomers concluded.They added that at the moment it is difficult to determine the shape and orientation of the host galaxy. Therefore, the star-forming activity scenario remains plausible if these properties are uncertain. More information: Takashi J. Moriya et al. Slowly evolving interacting transient rising for more than 100 days arXiv:1907.01633v1 [astro-ph.HE]: arxiv.org/abs/1907.01633 HSC16aayt Citation: HSC16aay is a Type IIn supernova, study suggests (2019, July 11) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-07-hsc16aay-iin-supernova.html New research presented by an international team of astronomers suggests that a recently detected transient, designated HSC16aay, is a Type IIn supernova. A research paper reporting the discovery and detailing the finding, was published July 2 on the arXiv pre-print server. © 2019 Science X Network Study reveals properties of a Type Ib supernova in NGC 4080 Explore further 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.
The cow that had acid poured over it was put down about a month ago by its owner.Acid was poured over the cow in the Bluebank area at the beginning of June this year.The animal’s owner was in Johannesburg for work purposes when this act of cruelty took place.He phoned vets to go to his farm and monitor the cow’s condition.Since the incident, the animal’s condition had not improved and thus it had to be put down. DID YOU KNOW?Click on the words highlighted in red to read more on this and related topics.If you are reading this on your cellphone and there are telephone numbers provided in the text, you can call these simply by clicking on them.To receive news links via WhatsApp.For the latest news, visit our webpage or follow us on Facebook and Twitter why not join us there? WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite