The World is Your Office: A Study in Telecommuting

first_imgWhat type of work model should be used to manage knowledge workers?When workers are increasingly distributed globally at multiple physical locations, how do effective interpersonal relationships form and grow?How will technology and people considerations impact the locations where people come together?How can the office environment be configured to invoke optimum worker productivity?How will organizations source the best workers and cope with differing attitudes across a five-generation workforce?Telecommuters TodayThough there are a significant number of mobile workers today, the number is still small in comparison to what it will be one day. According to the “The State of Telework in the U.S.” 50 million U.S. employees work jobs that are telework compatible, but only 2.9 million consider home their primary place of work. This represents 2.3 percent of the workforce. Meaning the full impact of virtualization has yet to be realized.Some are dubious as to whether the workplace will continue to move in a virtualized direction. Rawn Shah, director and social business architect at Rising Edge, recently wrote on Forbes, “We are only starting to understand what the future of work looks like. In my view, the imagined idea of entirely virtual organizations is similar to how we used to think of the future as full of flying cars and colonies in space. Reality is much more invested in hybrid in-office plus remote scenarios. Physical space is still a strong element of work that we need to keep track of, and understand better to learn how we truly collaborate.”Telecommuters TomorrowAccording to Tim Hansen in his white paper “The Future of Knowledge Work,” there are already several trends influencing the current workplace that will directly impact virtualization of the enterprise in the future: Defining employees on the cusp of transformationDynamic, agile team structures will become the normThe location of work will vary widelySmart systems will emerge and collaborate with humansA second wave of consumerization is coming via servicesThe questions IT leaders are asking now can be answered by isolating these already-present factors driving virtualization.Our offices are changing rapidly — don’t let your employees suffer through legacy work models. Recognizing the change swirling around you will help you strategize for the coming changes on the horizon.To continue the conversation on Twitter, please follow us at @IntelITCenter or use #ITCenter. Image source: bestreviews.comIf you look down at your workspace right now and analyze the way it has changed in the past few decades, you’ll likely be amazed by the contrast. Technology has given us the capacity to eliminate waste and optimize our workplaces for productivity, but it has also fundamentally changed the way we work. Less ties to a physical desk in a physical workspace has led to an upswing in the mobile workforce. According to the “The State of Telework in the U.S.” — which is based on U.S. Census Bureau statistics — businesses saw a 61% increase in telecommuters between 2005 and 2009.IT decision makers have witnessed this growth from the trenches, where they enable the business to grow through technological advancements.  But there are several key questions IT leaders will face in the coming waves of virtualization…last_img read more

Childrens Day: Prez awards paralympian for Exceptional

first_imgAchievementNew Delhi, Nov 14 (PTI) Revathi Nayak M, daughter of a farmer from Karnatakas Devangere district and herself a Paralympian, today received gold medal as part of National Child Awards for Exceptional Achievements given away by the President on the occasion of Childrens Day.Revathy says her father has been the force behind her achieving the feat.She started swimming when she was just eight years of age. A water canal from the local dam in her village was her “swimming pool”. Later, the closing of the dam threatened to jeopardise her dream.It was her father who wouldnt let that happen and shifted out of the village so she could have access to modern sports facilities.”My dream was to produce sportspersons for my country,” says Manjunath, Revathis father.Manjunath is a former athlete and is grooming all his three children to sports.His 13-year-old daughter Rakshita Nayaka plays for Karnatakas U-16 cricket team. And 10-year-old son, Nakshatra Nayaka, is a national sub-junior silver medallist in swimming.”This is my way of living out my dream of being a sportsperson through my children,” says Manjunath.He speaks about how often having two daughters was frowned upon in his community.”I have always felt that my girls are at par with boys. I put one of my daughters in cricket even though it is considered a male sport. In my village in Devangere she is the only girl cricketer who plays with all the other boys.”Revathy, the gold medalist at todays award ceremony, has a leg length discrepancy, or uneven legs, but that has not deterred her from winning at several international competitions and aiming for a medal at Olympics someday.advertisementToday, the 16-year-old has a silver medal in 50 metre breast stroke and bronze medal in 100 metre breast stroke at International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports World Games held at Prague in 2016 and in the Netherlands in 2015.She was also placed 6th in Paralympics swimming held at Pasadana of America at Rose Bowl Aquatics in 2014.She was among 31 children in total who received National Child Awards for Exceptional Achievements. Among the winners were chess players, an equestrian as well as students with keen interest in music and those with several technological innovations to their name.Awards in two other categories- National Awards for Child Welfare, 2015 and Rajiv Gandhi Manav Seva Award, 2016- were also given away today. PTI JC TIRlast_img read more

Another Membership Perk: Discounts with GEICO

first_imgAt Freelancers Union, we believe in banding together to build solutions and create value for our members. That’s why we started our discounts program – to save you cash by leveraging the power of group purchasing.Now we have an exciting new addition to our discounts program: GEICO! As a member, you can save up to 8%. Check out their new website created just for Freelancers Union members to receive a free car insurance quote, or find great rates on homeowners, renters, umbrella, and motorcycle coverage.Already have a GEICO account? If you’d like to use this new discount, call 800.368.2734 and let them know you’re a Freelancers Union member. Embrace the many perks of membership and start saving today.last_img read more

The 11 Best Stats From Oklahoma State’s Win Over TCU

first_imgWhat an afternoon in Stillwater. It’s hard to boil this game down to just 11 stats, but here are the ones I found most compelling.1. Mason Rudolph’s first 5 TD gameOnly Josh Fields (2003 SMU and 2002 Kansas) and Brandon Weeden (2010 Tulsa) Have had more in a game. Fields had the famous seven TD game against SMU and six against Kansas. Weeden had six against Tulsa. It felt like Rudolph could have had 10 if they’d let him ride until the end.2. TCU ran 110 plays. A hundred and ten!Only one team has run more this season (Colorado against UCLA last week which Matt Hinton noted was a FBS record).Colorado ran 114 plays vs. UCLA which (far as I can tell) is an FBS record for regulation. N’western ran 115 in 2010 Outback Bowl, in OT.— Matt Hinton (@MattRHinton) October 31, 2015TCU was five plays from running more plays than any team has ever run in a FBS game. Wow.TCU ran 57 more plays than OSU. This has happened two other times since 2000 in games featuring two FBS teams.— Dave Hudson (@okc_dave) November 8, 20153. OSU and AlabamaThe only two teams that have wins over AP top five teams this season? How about Alabama and Oklahoma State. That’s also the fifth time since 2008 that Oklahoma State has beaten a team in the AP top 10.4. Yards per play differentialOklahoma State, despite running 57 fewer plays than TCU, posted a tidy yards per play mark of 8.60. That’s some 2011 territory right there. TCU? Also pretty good at 6.03. Like Poke pointed out, though, it felt like they needed another 11 quarters to catch the Cowboys.Pick six. Tcu needs like 299 plays to score enough points to win— thinks we go 8-4 guy (@Pokelahoma) November 8, 2015 8. All the James Washington statsThere are many, but this is probably the most preposterous:From the Texas Tech game through the TCU game, Washington scored on four straight touches of 75 yards, 73 yards, 48 yards and 50 yards. Literally all he did was score four straight times he got the ball (246 yards total). Incredible.9. About that explosive offenseThis is straight from the OSU athletic dept.OSU has scored a total of 177 points (58+70+49) in its last three games, which is tied for the second-highest point total in a three-game stretch in school history.Wait, whaaaat?!The Cowboys scored 187 points in their first three games of the 2012 season (vs. Savannah State, Arizona and Louisiana) and had 177 during a span of three games in 2011 that included Baylor, Kansas State and Texas Tech.10. Grind it out on offense?Nope. The Cowboys’ longest scoring drive of the game lasted 1:13. The offense had scoring drives of 0:03, 0:26, 0:46, 0:49, 0:57 and 1:13.11. Put Chad Whitener on offenseWhitener had more picks in the TCU game than Kevin Peterson and Ashton Lampkin have on the year combined.#OKstate Mike Gundy (maybe) joking about LB Chad Whitener: “He’s got good hands. We should probably be using him on offense.”— Kyle Fredrickson (@kylefredrickson) November 8, 2015 5. Mason Rudolph was nearly perfectMason Rudolph’s QBR was 96.1 on Saturday. That was the fifth-best performance of the weekend and the 31st best individual QB performance of anybody all year. It’s hard to imagine somebody being much better than he was.6. In its last 52 home gamesOSU is 43-9 in its last 52 home games going back to 2008. It is 31-6 since 2010. Only Nebraska, OU (3x), Texas (3x), West Virginia and Kansas (!) have beaten OSU at home since 2008.7. Trevone Boykin, oopsBoykin came into Saturday having thrown five INTs in 297 attempts on the season. Then he threw four (the most he’s ever had in his career) on his next 57 attempts against Glenn Spencer’s unit.More on Boykin.Trevon Boykin’s Stillwater fate much like RGIII’s: 3 career games in Stillwater: 2 TD passes, 8 ints., 0-3 record. #okstate— Dave Hunziker (@Gopokesvoice) November 8, 2015center_img If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 vs Galaxy Note 9: How different is the new Note from the old

first_imgSamsung Galaxy Note 10 vs Galaxy Note 9: How different is the new Note from the oldThe new Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ succeed last year’s Galaxy Note 9 by offering upgrades to design and hardware. We take a look at how the new Note devices compare with the Note 9.advertisement Next Sanket Vijayasarathy New DelhiAugust 10, 2019UPDATED: August 13, 2019 08:07 IST HIGHLIGHTSThe Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ bring substantial upgrades to the design and hardware.The Galaxy Note 10 packs a 3,500mAh battery and the phone supports 25W fast charging, which is a noticeable downgrade.Both the Note 10 phones also support reverse wireless charging as well. Samsung has announced two new Note smartphones, Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+, that succeed last year’s Galaxy Note 9. This is the first time Samsung has launched two Note devices at the same time. As one would expect, the regular Note 10 is a smaller version of the Note 10+. Both the phones largely pack the same hardware and look almost identical to each other apart from the screen size and a number of cameras. But how big of an upgrade is the Note 10 phones compared to the Note 9?As it turns out, the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ bring substantial upgrades to the design and hardware compared to last year’s Note, while still maintaining that traditional Note feel – thanks to their boxy design and the S Pen. Here’s a quick look at how the Note 10 and Note 10+ compared to the Note 9.Price: The Galaxy Note 9 was launched in India last year priced starting at Rs 67,900 for the 6GB + 128GB storage option going up to Rs 76,900 for the 8GB + 256GB variant. The Galaxy Note 10 price is set at Rs 69,999 for a single 8GB + 256GB version, while the Note 10+ costs Rs 79,999 for the 12GB + 256GB option, while the price of the 12GB + 512GB variant is not yet announced. Display: While the Galaxy Note 9 comes with a 6.4-inch QHD+ Super AMOLED display, the Note 10 offers a slightly smaller 6.3-inch Dynamic AMOLED display with a downgraded FHD+ resolution. The lower resolution on the Note 10 is so that Samsung can differentiate it from the Note 10+, which offers a large 6.8-inch QHD+ display. Apart from the size of the display, a major visual change is the thin-ness of the bezels and that the Note 10 get Infinity-O displays with a punch-hole cutout on the top center of the screen.advertisementProcessor: The Galaxy Note 9 is powered by last year’s flagship 10nm Exynos 9810 chipset. The Note 10 and Note 10+ get the newest Exynos 9820 SoC, which is a slight upgrade over the Exynos 9820 chip that powers the S10 series. The Exynos 9825 is based on a 7nm process to offer better power efficiency. The new Exynos processor is better suited to take on the Snapdragon 855 SoC. RAM: The Galaxy Note 10 comes in a single 8GB RAM option, while the Note 10+ is offered in 8GB and 12GB RAM variants. The Note 9 comes in 6GB and 8GB RAM versions.Storage: While the base model of the Galaxy Note 9 offers 128GB of internal storage, the Note 10 comes with twice the amount at 256GB internal storage. The Note 10+, on the other hand, will be offered in 256GB and 512GB storage options. All three devices support storage expandability up to 1TB.Battery: The Galaxy Note 10 packs a 3,500mAh battery and the phone supports 25W fast charging, which is a noticeable downgrade over the Galaxy Note 10 which packs a 4,000mAh battery. The Note 10+, however, houses a 4,300mAh capacity and supports 45W fast charging. Both the Note 10 phones also support reverse wireless charging as well. Camera: Samsung has increased the number of cameras on the Note 10 and Note 10+. While the Note 9 offers a 12MP dual camera system, the Note 10 and Note 10+ get triple and quad cameras, respectively. Both the Note 10 phones sport 12MP f/1.5-f/2.4 cameras, 16MP ultra-wide-angle lens and 12MP telephoto lens. The Note 10+ gets an added DepthVision camera for better depth mapping. As for the front camera, the Note 9 offers an 8MP f/1.7 sensor, while the Note 10 phones get a 10MP f/2.2 selfie camera.S Pen: The Galaxy Note 10 get a similar Bluetooth LE-enabled S Pen much like the Galaxy Note 9 did. A new feature that Samsung introduced this year is Air Actions, which allows the user to perform some actions like switching the camera mode to selfie by waving the stylus in the air.ALSO READ | Samsung Galaxy Note 10 vs OnePlus 7 Pro: How do these heavyweight flagships compare on paperALSO READ | Samsung Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10 Plus launched, coming to India within weeksALSO READ | Samsung announces 7nm Exynos 9825 SoC ahead of Galaxy Note 10 launchGet 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 byAmritanshu Mukherjee Tags :Follow Samsunglast_img read more

Culture Cards for PATH Students

first_imgAs at August this year, students benefitting under the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH) will have free entry to museums and galleries of the Institute of Jamaica (IOJ) and the annual Emancipation/Independence activities.This will be facilitated through culture cards to be provided by the Ministry of Youth and Culture.Portfolio Minister, Hon. Lisa Hanna, who made the announcement during her contribution to the 2013/14 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, June 18, said that “with this card, based on modalities that we are currently ironing out, these children and young people will have free entry to these facilities on a regular basis”.“This will include the establishment of a database of new audiences, which will then be passed on to the private cultural sector,” she added.Ms. Hanna said it is the intention of the Ministry to invite the private cultural sector, such as theatresand dance companies,to participate in theprogramme,which is intended to result in wider access and appreciation of culture.She said the Ministry of Youth and Culture intends to work closely with the Ministry of Education to develop more dynamic programmes “that will cause the nation’s children to leave school knowing more about our culture”.“We need to identify,together,the cultural content that every child must know at each stage of their education. We must identify what cultural experiences our children must have if they are going to grow up as committed citizens of Jamaica. The truth is too many prefer to live elsewhere or simply cannot wait to go elsewhere and we must face it and deal with it,” Ms. Hanna said.She noted that among the objectives of the Cultural Policy,which is being reviewed are “the building out of a culture and education framework to establish curriculum and other programmes to ensure that the nation’s children know more about their culture and develop the self concept that will allow them, like our forebears, to stand up and be counted in world affairs and in transformation of our country”.Contact: Chris Pattersonlast_img read more

Book Part of Nova Scotia Curriculum

first_imgA new children’s book commissioned by Nova Scotia’s lieutenant-governor will help students learn about responsible government. Lt.-Gov. Mayann Francis launched the book today, June 9, at Government House. Titled Angel and the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia, it introduces children to the role and official duties of the lieutenant-governor. “With this book it is my hope that the role of the lieutenant-governor can contribute to a heightened sense of citizenship, responsibility to democracy and interest in our political system among young people,” said Lt.-Gov. Francis. “I am delighted that the project is now complete and will be made available in schools throughout the province.” In the book Angel, Lt.-Gov. Francis’s cat, offers tips and interesting facts to engage children in wanting to learn more about democracy and how government works. The book will be used as a learning resource for the unit on citizenship in Grade 3 Social Studies. It is published in English, French, Mi’kmaq and Gaelic.last_img read more

Ebb and Flow flood victims still living in condemned houses years after

first_imgAshley BrandsonAPTN NewsTwo sisters from the Ebb and Flow First Nation in Manitoba say they’re living in dangerous conditions caused by a flood eight years ago.“You can see the mould from here, see?” says Judy Levasseur.“It sucks! It seriously does,” adds her sister Lorina Sinclair.Levasseur and Sinclair say from the outside, their houses look perfectly normal – but on the inside is where the problem is.And they say they’re not getting any help from chief and council.“Then there’s mold in here.  You can see all that mold,” said Levasseur.(Mould in the bathroom of Judy Levasseur’s home on the Ebb and Flow First Nation)Ebb and Flow First Nation is about 230 kilometres north of Winnipeg.In 2011 it was one of the communities washed out by a flood.Sinclair said she’ll never forget the day they were told to evacuate.“Councillors and a couple other helpers knocked on our door and told us we had to leave,” said Sinclair. “We didn’t have that much time to pack anything so, we just grabbed what we needed.”When the flood happened, the Canadian Red Cross swooped in the help find shelter for those affected – including Levasseur and Sinclair.But about four months later, the sisters say their mother wanted to go home because of health issues – so they followed her.(Lorina Sinclair, left, and Judy Levasseur say chief and council are not helping to solve their mold problems)The band allowed the family to live in this log house from 2011 to 2014.Sinclair says because their houses were affected by the flood, they hoped their houses would be replaced.But it didn’t happen.“When those houses were done, we asked for the keys. ‘Oh, we don’t have them. Go ask this person,  oh we don’t have them,’” says Sinclair. “Sure enough, there were already families in our houses and then we asked are we going to get our houses? ‘Oh no, you guys gave your houses away.”APTN News tried to contact the chief of Ebb and Flow First Nation Wayne Desjarlais to comment on this issue.  But calls were not returned.With no where else to go, the sisters and their families returned to their damaged houses – cracked windows and all.“When we got evacuated, they vandalised it so the window’s broken,” says Levasseur. “So I just fixed it like that.”Levasseur says while they were evacuated, people vandalized her vacant house – leaving broken windows and holes in the walls.“I’ve always been asking and asking and no, they (the band) say they can’t renovate condemned houses,” says Levasseur.(Levasseur points to a broken window in her home. She says vandals also punched holes in her walls)The sisters are frustrated because they’re seeing new housing being developed – and with the lack of answers from chief and council.“They should treat people right,” says Levesseur. “If they want to sit there and be a leader, you should treat your people right.”APTN also requested an interview with Jerry Daniels, the grand chief of the Southern Chiefs Organization.Philip Paul-Martin, a spokesperson for the SCO declined the request.abrandson@aptn.ca@ashleybrandsonlast_img read more

Key foreign currency quotations

Quotations for key foreign currencies in terms of the Canadian dollar. Quotations are nominal, for information purposes only.Canadian dollar value on Monday, the previous day, three-months and one-year: Currency Mon Fri 3 months Year U.S. dollar 1.2669 1.2672 1.3316 1.2937 British Pound 1.6548 1.6553 1.6728 1.7143 Japanese Yen 0.0113 0.0113 0.0122 0.0122 Euro in U.S. 1.1473 1.1454 1.0640 1.1072 Euro in Cdn 1.4535 1.4515 1.4168 1.4324Quotations provided by the Bank of Canada

Confucius Institute has inaugural meeting and tree planting

Greg Finn, left, Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President Academic, digs in with You Xin, international affairs director of Minjiang University.Representatives from Minjiang University visited Brock this week to commemorate the new Confucius Institute at Brock University.The delegation joined Brock representatives for a tree planting ceremony on May 30. They planted a Chinese Dogwood in front of the International Centre.The group held the institute’s inaugural meeting of the board of directors. The visit also included a campus tour, and one delegate gave a guest lecture on the Continuation of Lacquer Art.For more photos, visit Brock International. read more

New UN report finds migrants play critical role in AsiaPacific development

Launching the report today at the Foreign Correspondent’s Club of Thailand, Hongjoo Hahm, Deputy Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), emphasized that the scale of migration is only likely to increase in Asia and the Pacific, but that the outcome of the trend is in the hands of the region’s countries. “Business-as-usual risks heightening inequality, holding back advances in productivity, and facilitating human rights abuses,” said Mr. Hahm. “Positive outcomes require policies aligned with national development strategies and international standards promoting fair recruitment, decent and productive employment and social protection.” Mr. Hahm launched the ‘Asia-Pacific Migration Report 2015: Migrants’ Contributions to Development’ on behalf of the Asia-Pacific Regional Thematic Working Group on International Migration, including Human Trafficking, which includes 15 members from the UN system and the International Organization for Migration (IOM). Drawing on evidence gathered from across the region, the report found that more than 95 million people from countries in the Asia-Pacific region live outside their countries of birth, and that the region hosts more than 59 million migrants. The majority of these migrants are temporary migrant workers. The Asia-Pacific region also hosts more than 5.5 million refugees, and three of the main refugee-hosting countries in the world are in the region, according to the report. Among the report’s conclusions is that many migrant workers not only benefit from their migration, but also contribute to the development of their countries of origin and destination through their work and the remittances they send home. Migrants also face hardships and abuse, however, so action needs to be taken to maximize these benefits by ensuring that migration is orderly, safe, regular and responsible, the report found. Too often, prejudice against migration and unilateral approaches guide responses to migration challenges. Thus, rather than making migration policies that are aligned with national development priorities and promote conditions of dignity and respect for the rights of migrant workers, many countries place restrictions not only on the entry of migrants into the country, but also on their rights and their ability to access social protection, according to the report. The report also provides guidance on the steps that countries, regional organizations, civil society actors and others can take to improve positive impacts, notably through securing the rights of migrants and ensuring their access to social protection and decent work, both through national policies and multilateral dialogue and cooperation. The Regional Thematic Working Group is currently co-chaired by ESCAP and IOM. read more

Football Ohio State linebacker Jerome Baker declares early for the NFL draft

Ohio State junior linebacker Jerome Baker (17) celebrates with Sam Hubbard after bringing down USC quarterback Sam Darnold (14) in the third quarter of the 2017 Cotton Bowl against University of Southern California on Dec. 29 in AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. Ohio State won 24-7. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorOhio State will have to replace a member of its linebacker corps for the second year in a row because of an early entree into the NFL draft.Junior linebacker Jerome Baker announced his intentions to enter the 2018 NFL Draft Monday afternoon on Twitter in a letter addressed to “Buckeye Nation.”“After a considerable amount of time and endless conversations with my loved ones, I have decided to forgo my senior year at Ohio State University to pursue my childhood dream of playing professional football,” Baker wrote.Baker was a two-year starter at Ohio State, having burst onto the scene during his sophomore season in 2016 when he finished second on the team with 83 tackles and 9.5 tackles for loss, and finished tied for third with 3.5 sacks. He also had two interceptions, including one he returned for a touchdown.In 2017, however, Baker didn’t see the same success. He struggled against the pass and at defending opposing tight ends. He led the team this season with 72 tackles and had eight tackles for loss and three sacks, but his ability to defend the pass will be highly scrutinized throughout the draft process.He finished the Cotton Bowl with five tackles and 1/2 sack.For everything! pic.twitter.com/KOSQ4LhwHl— Jerome Baker Jr. (@Lastname_Baker) January 8, 2018 read more

Dementia risk for people in mostpolluted areas is 40 per cent higher

“Our results suggest both regional and urban background pollutants may be as important as near-traffic pollutants,” wrote the scientists from the University of London, Imperial College and King’s College London.”While toxicants from air pollution have several plausible pathways to reach the brain, how and when they may influence neurodegeneration remains speculative.”Last year, a study published in The Lancet medical journal suggested living close to a busy road increases the risk of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.Separate research, presented at the European Respiratory Society International Congress, found children who have green spaces near their homes have fewer respiratory problems such as asthma later in life. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Those who are exposed to air pollution are more likely to suffer from them, the study found.A Defra spokesman said: “Air pollution is the top environmental risk to human health in the UK, and while air quality has improved significantly since 2010, we recognise there is more to do.”This is why we have put in place a £3.5bn plan to reduce harmful emissions from road transport and have launched an ambitious clean air strategy which has been commended by the World Health Organisation.”By ending the sale of conventional new diesel and petrol cars and vans by 2040, we are also acting faster to tackle air pollution than almost every other major developed economy.” Living in a highly polluted area may increase the risk of dementia by as much as 40 per cent, a new study suggests.London-based research, published in journal BMJ Open, found an association between the neurodegenerative condition and exposure to nitrogen dioxide and microscopic particles known as PM2.5.The study focused on 131,000 patients aged between 50 and 79 in 2004, who had not been diagnosed with dementia, registered at 75 general practices within the M25.Those living in areas with the top fifth of nitrogen dioxide levels had a 40 per cent increased risk of being diagnosed with dementia compared with those living in areas with the lowest, the study found. A similar increase was seen with levels of PM2.5, they added.–– ADVERTISEMENT ––The associations could not be explained by factors known to influence the development of the condition, but the links were more consistent for Alzheimer’s disease than vascular dementia. read more

UK still leads the way for mining excellence in certain areas

first_imgIt was the end of a very important era when Britain’s last remaining deep coal mine closed in North Yorkshire last December, bringing the curtain down on an industry which once dominated great swathes of the country. Where there were once one million coal miners in the UK, that number has been decimated and is now limited to a small number of men working, largely, at open-pit mines.But despite this, the world’s largest independent lubricant manufacturer, Fuchs, has made the decision to keep its Centre of Excellence for underground mining in England.Fuchs operates in six continents – every one bar Antarctica – and all overseen from its UK base in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. Far from scaling back its mining division, Fuchs has been able to expand and grow in countries like Australia, USA, Russia and – in the last decade China – where both longwall underground and surface mining remain key sectors.“Fuchs, having its mining headquarters here in Staffordshire, goes back to the days of Century Oils which was a company that grew rapidly by supplying lubricants to the local mining industry in Stoke-on-Trent,” said Martyn Rushton, Head of Global Mining for the Fuchs Group.“It’s an historic relationship which goes back well over 100 years. To still have the Centre of Excellence held here at Fuchs UK makes us all exceptionally proud.”Fuchs acquired Century Oils in 1991 and set its sights on new territories.Rushton explains: “Throughout the 1980s, the UK longwall mining industry was declining rapidly. It was a horrendous period.  During the strikes we had to make redundancies and, when the strike was in full flow, we couldn’t even get to the mines.“We had to make some deliveries because there was equipment which had to be maintained from a safety aspect. I remember crossing the picket lines and that wasn’t pleasant at all.“But we came through that and when Fuchs took over Century Oils, the focus really switched to overseas, including non English-speaking countries. We went to Poland, Russia and the Ukraine where there was a huge amount of business to be won.”Today Fuchs’ most significant markets include South America, South Asia and the Nordic countries.Each of these present their own unique challenges. Ruston said: “Often these mines are in the middle of nowhere, which can be a logistical nightmare.“And then each country is different. In Ukraine at the moment, for example, there is still conflict. All of the coal which heats the Ukraine comes from the Donets Basin. We are still managing to supply product, manufactured in the UK, to that area every week.“Some of the coal mines have been critically damaged and may never open again – but even during hard times it’s in everyone’s interests to keep some of the lights on.“Russia is a huge market for us but we’ve seen the devaluation of the Russian Rouble and Western products can be very difficult to sell – or impossible under an embargo. However, what we do have in Russia, is a newly-commissioned modern manufacturing plant which has meant we’ve been able to maintain our sales. We supply the plant with some very special super concentrates made in the UK.“The Kuznetsk coal basin is in the middle of the Siberian Plain. The Siberian winter can be quite challenging. The coldest I’ve experienced is minus-38oC. It was certainly a test for our Western clothing.”Rushton feels that keys to Fuchs’ success lie in respecting different cultures and offering personal service and expertise.“Our technical people are brought from within the industry – and that’s crucial,” he said.“We bring in mining engineers and Fuchs can train them in lubrication. Industry knowledge is key when you’re sitting there with a mining engineer. They recognise you know what you’re talking about. “Deep mining is very dangerous and our customers need to know they can trust us. The products have to stand up to the harsh conditions and they have to do their job.“We send out our people to countries to provide training seminars and show them how to maintain fluids and so on. We also bring people to the UK and use our fantastic facilities and labs dedicated to mining. We show our customers the benefits of the products and that is key.“Moreover, the members of our global mining division, from different subsidiaries, meet on a regular basis, particularly at large trade fairs, to exchange ideas.”Fuchs’ best-known and best-selling underground mining products come under the Solcenic portfolio of low flammability, water-miscible hydraulic fluids which meet the requirements of OEMs building the machines, as well as mine operators.  In many countries fire resistant hydraulic lubricants became a legal requirement after a huge fire at a coal mine in Marcinelle, Belgium, killed 262 people in 1956.“You take the mine water, you mix it with our Solcenic concentrate and the solution is a controlled emulsion,” he explained.“It provides corrosion protection for the hydraulic system and some lubrication. It has to resist attack from micro-organisms to produce a filterable, hydraulic medium which can’t be compressed.“The roof support system is operated using the Solcenic hydraulic fluid. The roof supports are filled with the Solcenic emulsion, and with their unique formulation, this greatly reduces the risk of fire.”The second important range of products is the Powergear range of high-viscosity lubricants which have been specially developed to meet the requirements of mines.Each fluid has to pass vigorous testing before it can be used underground – and some are manufactured for a specific mine and its conditions.Rushton added: “We design our fluids to meet industry standards. For example, they undergo crevice corrosion tests where the seal is put in one position and the hydraulics in another for a number of weeks without moving. Underneath the contact regions, where the elastomer touches the steel, there has to be no serious corrosion occurring. If you get pitting corrosion it can lead to hydraulic leakage and failure. It’s very vigorous, but we are successful in passing.“Each coal mine has its own approval based on the tests we have done with the mine water from that particular mine. The mine water varies in quality tremendously. You can get very challenging waters with a very large amount of salts dissolved in them. Our challenge is to make a product suitable for the conditions.”When it comes to surface mining, the focus for Fuchs is reliable engine, gear and transmission oils to stand up to the test of the huge trucks being used. “We have to keep developing our lubricants as the machines develop to meet the OEM specifications. As they get bigger and stronger, of course the demand on lubricants gets more severe. “These are multi-million pound pieces of kit. With the cost of such equipment, it’s exceptionally important you don’t take shortcuts. To have them lying idle is disastrous. Our customers want reliability. You have to have the confidence with the lubricant. Fuchs has been able to do that – and we’ve proved that we can do this more efficiently than the big oil companies. “We’ll put specialised guys there on site – and the machines will be serviced by Fuchs technicians.We are continuing to develop and supply specialised products such as optimised coal froth flotation reagents for recovery of coal. Fuchs has a specialist flotation facility in Poland with a dedicated laboratory, working with raw feed from the mines, formulations comprising frothers and collectors can be optimised.  Flotation reduces the % of Ash in the coal making a valuable fuel for energy production which would otherwise be lost as waste”.“In places like China, coal mining will diminish because it has to reduce its emissions. Going forward our main aim is to grow the surface mining side of the business globally.”Last but not least, sustainability is a key strategy for the Fuchs Group. In a recent supplier evaluation program published by EcoVadis for GlaxoSmithKline, Fuchs Lubricants UK was awarded a gold recognition level as one of the top 5% performers.“There is huge potential for growth – worldwide there are still many opportunities for the team to pursue, and we’re delighted to be driving that forward from an area with such a rich mining heritage as Staffordshire.”last_img read more

Deportations from US dropped sharply in last year

first_imgWASHINGTON — The number of immigrants deported from the U.S. fell sharply in the last year, a decline driven by the Obama administration’s struggle to handle the surge of Central American migrants and its continuing shift in deciding whom to deport.The decrease was recorded even as the number of people caught crossing the border rose. It is likely to give new ammunition to Republicans who accuse the administration of lax enforcement, although it could also boost the president’s standing in Latino communities.Immigration agents removed 315,943 people in the year that ended Sept. 30, a 14 percent drop and the lowest total since President Barack Obama took office, according to a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement draft report obtained by the Los Angeles Times.About two-thirds were sent back to their home countries after being caught at the border. Those removals were down 9 percent from 2013, the report said.An even bigger decline came in the numbers of people removed after living for some time in the U.S., mostly after being ensnared in the criminal justice system. About 102,000 people were sent out of the U.S. in these so-called interior removals — a 23 percent drop from 2013, and fewer than half the number of people deported in 2011.last_img read more

Texas Education Agency Orders Districts Not to Use State Funds for Migrant

first_img Listen X 00:00 /01:04 To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: center_img The Harlingen Consolidated School District said in an email that it provides a teacher and assistant to teach 50 children at a Southwest Key facility, and counts those students in its enrollment numbers. It’s had an agreement with the federal contractor since 2013.David Hinojosa, who is the national director of policy for the Intercultural Development Research Association based in San Antonio, said with the state drawing a line in the sand, it raises several concerns.“These school districts, through the goodness of their heart, are trying to provide some additional resources to these children in need, who have been separated from their families … and they’re actually providing real services, real teacher time and the message the state is sending is, ‘Don’t do that, That’s not our responsible,’ — even though many of these kids may end up in Texas schools,” Hinojosa said. “Why not allow these school districts to help supplement the education of these students to make sure once, if they do indeed transition to a Texas public school, that they’re more ready, as opposed to being further behind? Because now if they’re further behind, you’re going to have to use more resources,” he added. Laura Skelding for The Texas TribuneThe Karnes County Residential Center is a detention center for immigrant women and their children in Karnes City, southeast of San Antonio. The facility is run by The GEO Group, Inc.Texas education officials have ordered public school districts to not use any state funds to educate immigrant children held in federal detention centers, issuing guidance that goes against some current practices.In a letter Friday, the Texas Education Agency sent a strong message to districts that want to educate immigrant children in federal custody who’ve been separated from their parents.TEA said districts have to charge tuition if they teach these children, and they can’t count them as students for state funding purposes. Michael Olivas, who teaches law at the University of Houston, said that the state still has some responsibility.“State law says these kids have to be educated — they have to be educated in what is better and more adequate, more comprehensive settings than these cages, which are not working, and no one can concede or stipulate that that is somehow adequate,” Olivas said.Olivas added that there are overlapping jurisdictions between state and federal law, but these immigrant children are falling into a “canyon” between them.Some Texas school districts already have education agreements with federal contractors that manage these migrant shelters. Sharelast_img read more

South African opposition coalition splits

first_img Comments   Share   Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies The Democratic Alliance party said in a statement that opposition leader Mamphela Ramphele had reneged on a deal to be its presidential candidate and to merge her smaller party with the Democratic Alliance. Ramphele was the partner of Steve Biko, the Black Consciousness leader who was tortured and died in police custody in 1977. She has been an activist, doctor, academic and World Bank executive.“Dr. Ramphele has demonstrated _ once and for all _ that she cannot be trusted to see any project through to its conclusion. This is a great pity,” Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille said in the statement. Her party promised to brief journalists on the coalition breakdown Monday.“It is not clear what her objective is, but whatever it is, it is not in the interests of the South African people,” said Zille, who said Ramphele had insisted on going public last week with her acceptance of the offer to be presidential candidate for the Democratic Alliance. Zille described Ramphele as a “longtime personal friend of mine” and said she had sought to bring Ramphele into politics over many years.Ramphele last year formed her own party, named Agang, or Build, in the Sesotho language, but struggled to gain political momentum. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Top Stories Sponsored Stories New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t like In a statement Friday, she said she remained leader of her party and that claims that she would be accepting membership in the Democratic Alliance were false.(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement JOHANNESBURG (AP) – South Africa’s main opposition party said Sunday a plan to join forces with another opposition group to challenge the ruling party in elections this year has collapsed, just five days after the leaders of the two groups held an upbeat news conference to announce they were merging their campaigns.The sudden turnaround reflected the deep divisions within opposition ranks in South Africa, which has been led by the African National Congress, the chief liberation movement during white racist rule, since Nelson Mandela was elected president in South Africa’s first all-race elections in 1994. Analysts expect the ruling party to win this year’s elections, though possibly with a smaller majority. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility 5 treatments for adult scoliosislast_img read more

Strong year for Sunshine Coast tourism

first_imgThe latest International Visitor Survey (IVS) saw the Sunshine Coast record the highest growth figure of any region in Queensland, with 9.4 per cent growth and a total of 245,000 international visitors in the year up to September 2014.This compared with growth of 3.2 per cent in international visitors to Tourism North Queensland and 2.1 per cent for the Gold Coast.The growth in visitor numbers was complemented by an even greater increase of 12 per cent in nights stayed by international visitors, reflecting success in the Sunshine Coast’s objective of increasing the length of stay.The significant recovery in both international and domestic visitor numbers was a major message during the Sunshine Coast Destination Ltd (SCDL) Annual General Meeting, held this week.During the year, SCDL also attracted major contestable funding grants from Tourism & Events Queensland (TEQ) for three projects that were currently in final planning stages.SCDL board chairman Grant Hunt, said that the major changes to the organisation were already contributing to the region’s tourism performance.“During 2013-14, the Australian domestic tourism market was still suffering from a combination of a relatively high Australian dollar and depressed economic conditions, so it was highly impressive that the region was able to record such positive figures during the year,” Mr Hunt said.Mr Hunt said that new national and international marketing programmes developed during the 2013-14 financial year, and launched recently, were expected to further accelerate the pace of tourism arrivals.“That perception will have grown further as a result of the Sunshine Coast hosting DestinationQ and other major trade events, which have put the spotlight on the region’s ability to handle world-class conferences and events.”Source = ETB Travel News: Lewis Wisemanlast_img read more

Wanda Hotels Resorts unveils worldclass holiday destination

first_imgWanda Hotels & Resorts www.wandahotels.comWanda Hotels & Resorts unveils world-class holiday destinationXishuangbanna, China, 29 September 2015 – Wanda Hotels & Resorts proudly unveiled its Wanda International Resort Complex in Xishuangbanna on 26 September, a holiday destination collectively formed by three world-class hospitality operators – Wanda Vista, DoubleTree by Hilton and Holiday Inn.Known as a green oasis in the northern tropics, Xishuangbanna is home to the largest and most well-preserved rainforest in the northern hemisphere and which, in legends, is said to be a paradise. Located in the north-west corner of Jinghong city in the Dai autonomous prefecture, the Wanda Xishuangbanna International Resort Complex covers a sprawling 5.3 square-kilometers, and can be reached inside a 15-minutes drive from Gasa International Airport. The complex includes a theme park, a rainforest recreation and adventure park, a commercial centre, a Dai Show Theatre, a hospital and a new resort village. Taking up approximately 29 hectares in the east wing of the complex, the three luxury resort hotels comprise the five-star Wanda Vista Resort Xishuangbanna, the five-star DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Hotel Xishuangbanna, and the four-star Holiday Inn Resort Xishuangbanna, each offering its own signature experience.Wanda Vista Xishuangbanna Resort is the 11th property and the first resort launched under the Wanda Vista brand. Covering a land area of 160,000 square-meters, it is made up of a cluster of 26 buildings that include guestrooms, restaurants, function rooms and a spa. They are all designed to blend with their natural surroundings while emphasizing the local Dai heritage and culture, and they cocoon guests in a majestic, comfortable and refined resort environment. The 151 guest rooms, comprising villas, suites and detached private villas, are nestled within a tranquil setting lush with tropical flora that forms natural “green lungs”. Each elegantly designed room has a spacious area of at least 137 square-meters, and comes with a private pool, tropical garden and open terrace.Wanda Hotels & Resortswww.wandahotels.comThe hotel has three distinctively styled restaurants, a lobby lounge and a wine and cigar bar.Inspired by the famous Mekong River, the Mekong specialty restaurant offers authentic delicacies from the Thailand, prepared by a Thai chef who has mastered the tropical ingredients and spicy accents of their local cuisine. Café Vista offers all-day dining with an a- la-carte menu and international buffet, while ZHEN Chinese restaurant will delight your taste buds with authentic Cantonese and Yunnan specialties.The signature Wanda Vista “Cha Journey” tea service is also offered to guide guests through an authentic experience of enjoying local Pu-Er tea. A 4,000 square-meter conference centre is equipped with advanced audio-visual and lighting facilities that can be tailored to suit any event needs. The luxury SHUI Spa is the only rainforest-themed spa in the resort complex, and is made up of five detached villas, each featuring a spa treatment room, card room, hot tub and outdoor swimming pool. The resort’s other recreational facilities include a large 40-meter by 8-meter outdoor swimming pool framed by a green fence of tropical plants, a children’s playground and a fully-equipped gym. Another highlight is the Buddhist pagoda, which is surrounded by a peaceful garden of reflection in which are grown the “five trees and six flowers” that are significant to the Buddhist philosophy.The 412-room DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Hotel Xishuangbanna is Hilton group’s first hotel to open in Yunnan. Its architecture is heavily influenced by the local Dai culture and it also enjoys surroundings of lush tropical greenery. Each comfortably appointed room has a private balcony that lets guests take full advantage of the stunning views. The hotel also has three restaurants including Joy, an all-day dining restaurant, and Tailwind, which serves refined Cantonese and local Dai cuisine, a lobby lounge, a bar, a 660 square-meter grand ballroom, private lawn, a large fully-equipped hillside gym, a hair and beauty salon, outdoor swimming pool and children’s swimming pool.The Holiday Inn Resort Xishuangbanna marries to perfection the Dai traditional heritage while providing all the comforts of a modern hotel, as can be seen from its lobby, courtyard, three restaurants which include Ji all-day dining and Xiang Chinese restaurant, as well as a lobby lounge, expansive 2,300 square-meter conference area, a massive T-shaped outdoor pool, a gallery hall and a fitness center. The 415 guestrooms and suites are equipped with modern facilities while highlighting the local heritage with beautiful displays of authentic Dai handicrafts.“The group of premium hotels that form the Wanda Xishuangbanna International Resort Complex represent the ambitious development plans of Wanda Hotels & Resorts in China’s south-west region,” says Mr Qian Jin, President of Wanda Hotels & Resorts. “These three hotels will provide an outstanding vacation experience inspired by the unique local cultural landscape, enhanced by a wide offering of resort activities and facilities. They have made Xishuangbanna into a new world-class holiday destination, taking local tourism to new heights.”Source = Wanda Hotels & Resortslast_img read more