The Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona is one of the facilities that will be managed by a new organization created by the National Science Foundation. U.S. telescopes get a new overseer Steve (CC BY 2.0) By Daniel CleryOct. 31, 2019 , 3:30 PM Q: Why does U.S. astronomy need a new organization?A: By bringing all of NSF’s nighttime facilities under one umbrella, we can better leverage scientific synergies, utilize technical expertise to greater effect, and build a solid foundation for future initiatives. We can also better serve the scientific users by removing artificial barriers between cross-platform programs. There has been good progress in this area over the past several years, but the new laboratory structure takes this a step further.Q: What will be the major gains from having these three previously separate observatories under one umbrella?A: By more closely coordinating NSF’s optical-infrared astronomical sciences facilities managed by AURA, researchers will benefit from improved access, data sharing, and user support services.Services, such as [information technology], health and safety, communication, education, community engagement, and facilities operations will be shared across the observatories and projects. Scientists will have an opportunity to support the users of all NSF OIR Lab telescopes and work more closely together by sharing ideas and best practices. Engineers will have more flexibility and new opportunities to work on projects at multiple facilities within the organization. Researchers will see a more common user interface when applying to use any of the lab’s telescopes.Q: Can you give an example of a project or activity that will be made possible by the greater integration of these telescopes?A: The clearest early examples will involve time-domain and survey astronomy. With a larger number of telescopes in the mix, we can allocate apertures to specialized roles—for example visible spectroscopy of transients [objects changing rapidly] and infrared photometry of transient sources. We can also have a telescope at one site backstop another in the case of bad weather or provide a longer time sampling for variable objects. As the 4-meter telescope at Kitt Peak will soon be dedicated to a 5-year program focused on studies of cosmic structure using the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument, other telescopes in the system can replace some of the general purpose access that has been reduced as a result. This ensures that good science programs are not lost as we focus on the big questions.Q: If this leads to streamlining of operations, will there be financial savings?A: We expect that, as a whole, NSF’s OIR Lab will be cost-neutral—the goal is to grow our capabilities, not shrink our budget. If we can realize efficiency gains, we have numerous areas that need additional talent and resources.Q: Is there expected to be a reduction in staff in the combined observatories?A: No.Q: The Gemini Observatory has international partners and the LSST is partly funded by the Department of Energy. What will be their relationship with OIR Lab?A: Gemini’s international participants, through the board of directors, retain their role in strategic planning and scientific direction of Gemini. NSF’s OIR Lab will provide the coordination and expertise necessary to allow Gemini to implement that strategy and science efficiently and effectively.Q: What role will OIR Lab play in the effort by the two giant telescope projects—the GMT and the Thirty Meter Telescope—to make a joint bid for NSF funding?A: AURA’s portion of the design and development of the [U.S. Extremely Large Telescope] program, which is managed by OIR Lab’s Community Science and Data Center, will continue uninterrupted. A new player has joined the leadership of publicly funded astronomy in the United States. Earlier this month, the National Science Foundation (NSF) launched the National Optical-Infrared Astronomy Research Laboratory, henceforth to be known as OIR Lab. The new structure, which will be managed by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) in Washington, D.C., is intended to bring more cohesion to NSF’s rather fractured astronomical facilities and create a technical powerhouse akin to the European Southern Observatory, headquartered in Garching, Germany.OIR Lab will manage four existing observatories: Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile, Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona, Gemini Observatory with instruments in Hawaii and Chile, and the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, which is now under construction in Chile. The quartet represents essentially all of NSF’s observatories that operate in the optical and infrared wavelengths, but does not include telescopes that observe the Sun. OIR Lab will also incorporate the Community Science and Data Center in Tucson, Arizona.OIR Lab will be led by Patrick McCarthy, who was previously vice president of the Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT) project, an effort to build a 25-meter telescope in Chile, and an astronomer at the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, D.C. ScienceInsider recently chatted with McCarthy about his new charge. 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MRT 7 on track for partial opening in 2021 View comments Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ MOST READ Runners move along 4th Avenue in the Brooklyn borough of New York during the New York City Marathon on Sunday, Nov. 5, 2017. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki)NEW YORK — Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya has won the New York City Marathon, holding off countryman Wilson Kipsang by three seconds for his first major victory.Kamworor ran the race in 2 hours, 10 minutes, 53 seconds. He and Kipsang embraced just past the finish line to huge cheers.ADVERTISEMENT Aussie coach, Reyes, Baldwin headline coaches convention Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims LATEST STORIES Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Malditas save PH from shutout Palace: Robredo back to ‘groping with a blind vision’ American running great and 2009 New York winner Meb Keflezighi completed his 26th and final marathon, collapsing as he crossed the finish.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games opening After 30 years, Johnlu Koa still doing ‘hard-to-make’ quality breads The Fatted Calf and Ayutthaya: New restos worth the drive to Tagaytay
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MLS D.C. United 2018 season preview: Roster, projected lineup, schedule, national TV and more Thomas Floyd @thomasfloyd10 04:24 2/13/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Brad Mills MLS DC United Coming off a disappointing season, Ben Olsen’s side will look to endure a daunting road trip to kick off 2018 before opening Audi Field in July A day two decades in the making will finally arrive in the nation’s capital this summer — but the tenor of that occasion could hinge somewhat on how the final four months of that wait unfold.When D.C. United opens Audi Field against the Vancouver Whitecaps on July 14, Ben Olsen’s side will christen a venue that might as well be the manifestation of patience. That match, however, will be United’s 15th of the 2018 MLS campaign, following 12 road games and a pair of matches at temporary home venues.Will United overachieve during that daunting stretch, positioning the club to ride a back-loaded slate of home games to the postseason? Perhaps United will tread water, picking up just enough points to stay within striking distance. Or maybe those first 14 matches will put a young, retooled squad in too deep a hole to dig out of. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Whatever the answer, this much is clear to United fans: 2018 will be celebrated, and it’ll be strange.How did D.C. United perform in 2017?2017 finish: 11th in Eastern Conference (9-20-5), missed the playoffsA streak of three straight postseason appearances came to an emphatic end in the final season at RFK Stadium, as United finished last in the Eastern Conference. While the midseason additions of Paul Arriola, Zoltan Stieber and Russell Canouse livened the squad, United still tied for the league’s most feeble attack with 31 goals in 34 matches.D.C. United’s key offseason lossesThe club’s starting goalkeeper — and best player — over the past seasons has moved on, with Bill Hamid departing for Danish side Midtjylland.Aside from that substantial loss, United has retained its core while parting ways with a number of 30-something veterans — including Sean Franklin, Lloyd Sam, Patrick Nyarko and Marcelo Sarvas — who had served the club well but didn’t factor into future plans.D.C. United’s key offseason additionsVenezuela international Junior Moreno and former Atlanta United winger Yamil Asad (whose acquisition has not yet been formally announced) bring further promise to a midfield stacked with under-25 talent — from Arriola and Canouse to Ian Harkes and Luciano Acosta.In goal, veteran David Ousted has arrived via a deal with Vancouver to compete with Steve Clark for the starting job. Trades also brought center back Frederic Brillant and forward Darren Mattocks to the fold as United looked to shore up its squad with proven commodities.Full D.C. United roster entering 2018 seasonGoalkeepers: Steve Clark, David Ousted, Travis WorraDefenders: Steve Birnbaum, Frederic Brillant, Nick DeLeon, Oniel Fisher, Taylor Kemp, Kofi Opare, Jalen RobinsonMidfielders: Luciano Acosta, Paul Arriola, Yamil Asad, Russell Canouse, Chris Durkin, Ian Harkes, Jared Jeffrey, Junior Moreno, Ulises Segura, Zoltan StieberForwards: Darren Mattocks, Bruno Miranda, Patrick MullinsD.C. United’s projected starting lineupOusted’s resume seems to give him the leg up over Clark in the race for the No. 1 role. A lack of established depth means Kemp and DeLeon are the default selections at fullback, while Brillant will try to fend off Opare for the starting slot alongside Birnbaum.The midfield is where things get tricky. A glut of options means Canouse, Moreno and Harkes are battling for two central midfield spots behind Acosta. Arriola seems locked in on the right, meanwhile, leaving Asad and Stieber to contend for minutes on the opposite flank.Up top, Mullins and Mattocks are poised to split playing time as United banks on a pair of veterans who have shown glimpses of potential but never put together a complete season.D.C. United’s national TV coverageAtlanta United vs. D.C. United – Saturday, March 11, at 3 p.m. ET on ESPNPhiladelphia Union vs. D.C. United – Saturday, April 28, at 3:30 p.m. ET on UniMasLos Angeles FC vs. D.C. United – Monday, May 28, at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2Atlanta United vs. D.C. United – Saturday, July 21, at 3:30 p.m. ET on UnivisionD.C. United vs. Orlando City – Sunday, Aug. 12, at 6 p.m. ET on FS1D.C. United vs. New England Revolution – Sunday, Aug. 19, at 6 p.m. ET on FS1New York Red Bulls vs. D.C. United – Sunday, Aug. 26, at 7 p.m. ET on FS1D.C. United vs. Atlanta United – Sunday, Sept. 2, at 5:30 p.m. ET on FS1New York City FC vs. D.C. United – Saturday, Sept. 8, at 3:30 p.m. ET on UniMasD.C. United vs. New York Red Bulls – Sunday, Sept. 16, at 1 p.m. ET on ESPND.C. United vs. Chicago Fire – Sunday, Oct. 7, at 1 p.m. ET on ESPND.C. United vs. FC Dallas – Saturday, Oct. 13, at 3:30 p.m. ET on Univision
Flamengo chief Braz confirms they want to keep hold of Inter Milan striker Gabigolby Carlos Volcano7 hours agoSend to a friendShare the loveFlamengo vice-president Marcos Braz has confirmed they want to keep hold of Gabriel Barbosa.Gabigol is on-loan at Fla from Inter Milan.“Conversations for his stay are underway, but it’s still too early,” Braz told Lance.“We’ve started talking to his agents. I don’t think there will be any problems if he wants to stay.“Flamengo will make a strong and satisfying proposal. We’ll make every effort to keep him.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say
What It’s Like to Drive a NASCAR Race Car (and Where You Can Get Behind the Wheel) If you’re a millennial of a certain age, you remember a joke that got traded around parties, usually right after someone mentioned how bad traffic was:“Hey, it’s 2003. Aren’t our cars supposed to be driving themselves by now?”Whoever started that joke has got to be super frustrated by now. While autonomous vehicle technology is purportedly alive and well in 2018, most of us have only seen self-driving cars on YouTube. Speaking of which, doesn’t it seem as though the noise around self-driving cars has died down a lot?In fact, it has. Or at least, consumers aren’t paying quite as much attention as they used to. Some of that is just the times we live in — there are a lot more news stories demanding a lot more of our attention. But it’s also the result of waning enthusiasm for the prospect of driverless cars. According to a survey just released by online automotive superstore CARiD, while Silicon Valley executives and technology experts are quick to tout the rapid advancements of self-driving vehicles, the general public may not be ready to embrace this technology anytime soon.So does that mean we have to wait even longer for the future to arrive? To answer that, we spoke with CARiD’s product training director Richard Reina, an auto expert with over 30 years of experience who has been closely following the self-driving car trend since its inception.CARiD’s survey starts off with a bang, showing the popular confusion around what “autonomous vehicle” actually means. Out of over 1000 participants, 52 percent of CARiD’s survey respondents incorrectly identified autonomous vehicles as having some level of human control involved. Strictly defined, though, autonomous driving means that once the vehicle starts, your only role is to keep your hands and feet inside the car at all times.Reina says this is symptomatic of the marked hesitation from the public to embrace this technology. This catches the automotive industry in a quandary about how to market self-driving cars. On one hand, positioning cars as fully autonomous capitalizes on what makes them unique. On the other hand, as exciting and futuristic as it sounds to get around in a self-driving car, most drivers like the feeling of control behind the wheel. “Ultimately, consumer willingness to let go of the private vehicle, a symbol of freedom for over 100 years, has to occur in order for this revolution to take place.”In other words, we can blame Jack Kerouac for all this.In the early days of self-driving car technology, the big selling point we all heard was that these vehicles would be safer. And indeed, over half the participants said they expected that autonomous vehicles would greatly reduce collisions and injuries. Nevertheless, few survey participants responded that they would feel safe in a self-driving car — most people said they would rather drive themselves.Reina chalks this up to the average driver’s general distrust of others on the road. He also acknowledges that past news around self-driving cars seemed to be dominated by the safety failures of these vehicles.Proving safety, Reina says, is a sticky issue. The only way to demonstrate the superior safety of self-driving cars is to get more of them on the road.“There are some companies running self-driving fleets who have bragged about their safety records without being too specific. [But] we won’t be able to know the impact these driverless fleets have on safety until we have more time to test and compare collision statistics.”Until then, rest assured that you’re a good driver — it’s other drivers that are the problem.As for when the self-driving revolution will ultimately take place, Reina is cautious in his predictions. It all comes down, he says, to helping the consumer envision a world in which autonomous transportation is normal.“As more autonomous aids are introduced into general commerce, the public should slowly become more accustomed to these features to the point where they may demand them Some thinkers are predicting vehicles that can ‘switch’ between driver-operated and fully autonomous; some are predicting ‘urban zones’ with full autonomy, and ‘rural zones’ with driver-operated cars. It may be a mix of all this, gradually introduced.”Okay, but how long?“I believe the more ambitious predictions of 5 to 10 years are probably not accurate at this time. My best guess is that it will take at least a full generation, so more realistically, 20 to 25 years.”In other words, while we may not get to cruise to work hands-free and still get to keep our driving loafers, we should be off the hook from teaching our kids how to drive.Here’s to the future. 6 Fastest Cars in the World Right Now A Breakdown of All the Major Types of Car Racing Editors’ Recommendations Escape the City and the Roads with the 2020 Subaru Outback How Does a Vasectomy Work: Your No-Frills Guide to Getting Snipped
zoom Kim Han-sik, 73, CEO of Chonghaejin Marin, operator of the ill-fated Sewol ferry together with four of his employees will appear before Gwangju District Court today to enter pleas regarding negligence that lead to the death and disappearance of over 300 people, writes the Associated Press.Kim Han-sik, president of Chonghaejin. Photo Credit: APChonghaejin is accused of having overloaded the ferry even though he knew that it will make it unstable. Namely, the ferry had a limit on allowed cargo as it underwent remodeling after its purchase, making it top heavy.However, it is this overloading that is believed to have caused the accident together with the inadequate speed of navigation.The overloading became a practice in the company as it earned extra profit, around US$3 million just last year, as stated in the indictment.The nation is engulfed with fury and grief as the prosecution of the 15 crew members gains momentum.The Sewol crew members who managed to got away from the sinking refused to assume legal responsibility for the passengers’ fate, shifting the blame to the South Korean Coast Guard.Once the distress signal from the ferry was sent and the Coast Guard crew were on the scene it was up to them to rescue the passengers, the defence lawyer of the crew Im Ju-young said Tuesday, the second day of the trial in Gwangju.Three of the fifteen crew members, one of them being the captain, are facing death penalty having been charged with “homicide through willful negligence”. The captain claims that he could not prevent the overloading as the power of decision making was in the hands of the company’s management.The ferry was carrying around 475 people, including 325 students from a high school in Ansan, just south of Seoul, when it sent out a distress signal on April 16th at 8:58 a.m. in waters 20 kilometers off the island of Byeongpoong.World Maritime News Staff, June 20, 2014; Image: AP
zoom Japanese classification society ClassNK and Finnish maritime software company NAPA have agreed on a new joint project to reduce the time and cost of designing vessels in accordance with the new IACS harmonised Common Structural Rules. The new project will, according to the parties involved, enhance the data linkage between ClassNK’s PrimeShip-HULL(HCSR) design support software with NAPA’s 3D model based integrated design software NAPA Steel greatly improving the efficiency of the ship design process and reducing the cost of designing vessels in accordance with the new rules.Adopted in 2013, the IACS harmonised CSR will be applied to all tankers over 150m and all bulk carriers over 90m contracted after July 1, 2015. The harmonised CSR brings new requirements for more comprehensive structural analysis at the design stage, including FEM analyses covering the entire range of cargo hold structures, as well as new formulae for buckling, fatigue, and residual strength criteria to enhance safety and reliability. However, these new requirements also greatly increase the overall time needed for vessel design.In order to help reduce the burden of the new rules on ship designers, ClassNK released PrimeShip-HULL (HCSR), a multi-functional vessel design support tool that makes it easy for yards and designers to carry out rule calculations and optimize their designs in accordance with the new rules.According to ClassNK Executive Vice President Yasushi Nakamura, PrimeShip-HULL (HCSR) is the world’s first design support software to incorporate the requirements of the harmonised CSR. “With PrimeShip-HULL(HCSR) we have already succeeded in reducing the additional time needed for HCSR vessel design by roughly 50%, but our goal is to reduce the workload and in turn costs for ship designers and builders around the world. By improving the link to NAPA Steel and other design software we believe we can achieve even greater results,” said Nakamura.Today 95% of the world’s vessels are built by yards which use NAPA’s ship design software, including its integrated 3D model based design system NAPA Steel. NAPA Steel allows yards to rationalize their ship design processes, reduce calculation time, and create high quality finite element models.NAPA President Juha Heikinheimo said: “Improved linkage between NAPA Steel and ClassNK’s PrimeShip-HULL (HCSR) will allow yards building CSR compliant vessels to even further streamline their design process, while also eliminating the need for designers to input duplicate data into multiple programs.”Press Release
Marrakech– The 2nd World Forum on Human Rights kicked off, in Marrakech Thursday, with the participation of more than 6,000 people from hundred countries.The forum, which will last till November 30th, is a platform to tackle several issues, including the rights of children, women, disabled people and migrants, in addition to other unresolved issues from the Vienna Conference on Human rights and other issues related to the new generation of human rights.Morocco’s Justice Minister, Mustapha Ramid while delivering the opening speech.José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, former Spanish Prime Minister is one of the Forum’s prominent guestsGrand Chief Derek Nepinak, head of the Assembly of Manitoba ChiefsDriss Yazami, President of the National Council of Human Rihgts (CNDH), greeting Miloudi Moukharik, SG of Moroccan Labor Union (UMT)World Human Rights Forum Brings together hundreds of delegations, representing 90 countries.Significant presence of women in the World Human Rights ForumMorocco’s Minister of Environment, Charafat Afilal talking to the great singer Marcel KhalifaMarcel Khaliafa posing with Salah El Ouadi, the head of Damir MovementFatou Bensouda, general prosecutor of the International Criminal Court.World Forum of Human Rights’ opening ceremony was attended by great number of participants from over 90 countries.
Rabat – Morocco and Denmark want to develop bilateral cooperation in the fight against terrorism and illegal migration, said a statement from the department of the Head of Government, Saad Eddine El Othmani.Among other EU countries, Denmark has been facing an increasing flow of migrants in recent years. The number of people charged with being illegal immigrants in the scandinavian country has risen from 877 in 2015 to 1,348 in 2016.The Danish government has taken strict measures against the phenomenon, shifting its focus to repatriation rather than integration. In a meeting on Thursday in Rabat, El Othmani and Danish Parliament speaker, Pia Kjarsggard, brought up the subject of illegal migration.The Head of the Government suggested potential cooperation between the two countries in the field of migration, praising “Morocco’s distinguished experience in managing the issue of sub-Saharan migrants.”“The kingdom has adopted a development approach through the strengthening of win-win economic partnerships in order to contribute to the development of origin countries,” he said.Denmark has also taken such diplomatic approach, pledging a USD 14 million for family planning in Sub-Saharan countries, as it could help “limit the migration pressure on Europe,” according to Reuters.During the meeting, El Othmani commended the Moroccan political model. “Under the leadership of the King, Morocco is an open, plural and democratic country where elections are held on the set dates and whose results are accepted by all parties,” he said.Meanwhile, the Danish Parliament welcomed the stability that characterizes Morocco, saying that the country is both politically and economically stable. This leads to the prospect of developing political and economic relations with the Kingdom of Denmark, according to El Othmani.
“Violence against women in the context of armed conflict is widespread and largely unpunished,” Naéla Gabr, chair of the committee monitoring compliance with CEDAW, told the General Assembly.In that context, Ms. Gabr said the committee welcomed the Security Council resolution affirming that it would consider the prevalence of rape and sexual violence in decisions to impose or renew sanctions on countries embroiled in conflict.Ms. Gabr noted that CEDAW, also known as the international bill of rights for women, has transformed the lives of many women and has been the force behind significant changes in many countries, including through laws, policies and programmes.However, the potential of the Convention “to bring about change at the national level has not been exploited to the full, much as a result of its lack of visibility and accessibility, and resource constraints,” said Ms. Gabr. The 30-year anniversary of the Convention provides an opportunity for governments to commit to raising its visibility and impact, said Ms. Gabr. “Our ultimate goal should be the increase of ratifications of both the Convention and its Optional Protocol and the withdrawal of reservations.” Currently 186 countries are party to the 1979 Convention, with the United States being the only signatory yet to ratify the Convention and several States ratifying with reservations. Under the Convention, States parties are legally obliged to take the necessary steps to end all forms of discrimination against women in any field whether political, economic, social, cultural or civic. Countries are also committed to submit national reports – at least every four years – on measures they have taken to comply with their treaty obligations.The Convention upholds women’s rights to acquire, change or retain their nationality and the nationality of their children. States parties also agree to take appropriate measures against all forms of traffic in women and exploitation of women, and it is the only human rights treaty to uphold the reproductive rights of women. 12 October 2009The rampant and brutal abuse of women in war zones continues unchecked, the chair of a United Nations committee said today, urging all nations to ratify the international Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
The US official said that in the 21st century, a country’s most important economic asset is its people, and Sri Lanka can harness its people to achieve great things. (Colombo Gazette) “All of this cooperation wouldn’t be possible without the democratic progress Sri Lanka has made,” he said.“While Sri Lanka may be relatively young – as nations go – the United States and Sri Lanka are old friends.” “From the beginning Sri Lanka’s potential has never been in doubt. Today, Sri Lanka has the potential to become the next Asian Tiger,” he said at an event held in the US to mark Sri Lanka’s Independence Day. Bruce Wharton said the US supports Sri Lanka’s SME community, helping to create jobs, promote investment, and improve business. The United States (US) says Sri Lanka has the potential to become the next Asian Tiger.Acting Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs at the US State Department, Bruce Wharton said that from the beginning Sri Lanka’s potential has never been in doubt.
Among those who voted for the motion were Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera, Ministers S.B Dissanayake, Chandima Weerakody, Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, Susil Premjayantha and W.D.J Seniviratne. A group of United National Party (UNP) members have submitted a petition to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, demanding that the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Ministers who voted for the no-confidence motion against the Prime Minister in Parliament, be removed from their posts.At least 33 UNP MPs have signed the petition which was handed over to the Prime Minister after the no-confidence motion was defeated in Parliament. Jayasekera had said earlier that they were ready to be removed from their Ministerial posts if the motion is defeated. (Colombo Gazette)
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – A wildfire fueled by hot temperatures, gusty winds and thick, bone-dry forests has destroyed 92 homes, damaged five more and prompted more than 7,000 residents northeast of Colorado Springs to flee, sheriff’s officials said Wednesday.A separate Colorado wildfire to the south has destroyed 20 structures, including some in Royal Gorge Bridge & Park, and prompted evacuations of about 250 residents and nearly 1,000 inmates at a medium-security prison. To the north, another fire burned in Rocky Mountain National Park.Wildfires also were burning in New Mexico, Oregon and California, where a smokejumper was killed fighting one of dozens of lightning-sparked fires.Crews were so busy battling blazes across the West that the U.S. Forest Service said Wednesday it was mobilizing a pair of Defence Department cargo planes to help — a step taken only when all of the Forest Service’s contracted tankers already are in use.The fire near Colorado Springs, one of several that broke out Tuesday along Colorado’s Front Range, has prompted evacuation orders and pre-evacuation notices to between 9,000 and 9,500 people and about 3,500 homes and businesses, sheriff’s officials said.Some Colorado Springs residents were warned to be ready to evacuate, mostly because of a fear of flying embers spreading the fire into the state’s second-largest city. Sheriff’s officials also evacuated part of neighbouring Elbert County, including two camps with a total of about 1,250 children and adults.Bits of ash and the smell of smoke drifted into Denver, about 60 miles to the north, where the haze blocked the sun.No injuries or deaths have been reported, but El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa said officials were trying to confirm the whereabouts of one person reported missing Wednesday. Firefighters tried to go where the person was last seen but were turned back twice because it was too hot, he said.Maketa said he was worried about those who chose to ignore evacuation orders and stay behind.“One of my worst fears is that people took their chances and it may have cost them their life,” he said.The area is not far from last summer’s Waldo Canyon Fire that destroyed 346 homes and killed two people.Denver Broncos guard Ben Garland’s grandparents lost their home in that blaze and now live in a Black Forest neighbourhood. Smoke billowed near their new home Wednesday.“It’s tough. It was tough going through it the first time,” Garland said. “I know the first time, we didn’t take it as seriously. We just thought it’d pass over and the firefighters would take care of it. The second time, it was really scary and they packed up real quick and got ready to go.”The Forest Service mobilized specially equipped Defence Department C-130s to drop slurry on wildfires in the West after all 12 of its air tankers were deployed. At least one was fighting the Black Forest Fire.By law, the Modular Airborne Firefighting System — MAFFS — planes can be deployed only when all of the Forest Service’s contracted tankers are in use. Around this time last year, the aircraft sat on runways when massive wildfires burned in Colorado and New Mexico.In northeast California, Luke Sheehy was fatally injured this week by part of a falling tree in Modoc National Forest. The 28-year-old from Susanville, Calif., was a member of the Redding-based California Smokejumpers — firefighters who parachute into remote areas from airplanes.In New Mexico, a wildfire burning in the steep, narrow canyons of the Pecos Wilderness north of Santa Fe grew to more than 12 square miles Wednesday. It was burning about 10 miles southeast of some small communities. Crews planned to build fire lines and clear out fuel in key areas miles ahead of the blaze in hopes of protecting the communities if the fire heads that way.In southwestern New Mexico, firefighters were trying to keep a massive wildfire from reaching an old mining town whose 45 or so residents have been evacuated. That fire was burning in a mountainous area of dense forest.About 60 miles southwest of Colorado’s Black Forest Fire, a 4.5-square-mile wildfire that evacuated Royal Gorge Bridge & Park has destroyed 20 structures, including some in the park, but the park’s animals are all right.The soaring Royal Gorge suspension bridge spanning a canyon across the Arkansas River has fire damage to 32 of its 1,292 wooden planks, city officials said. An aerial tram car and tram buildings on either side of the gorge were destroyed, and the tram cable dropped into the canyon. An incline railway that descends 1,500 feet to the canyon floor was damaged.More than 900 prisoners at a nearby medium-security prison, including murderers and rapists, were evacuated overnight because of heavy smoke. The prisoners were transferred by bus and van, 200 at a time, throughout the night.“This was done as a precaution because it takes a lot of time to move the prisoners,” Department of Corrections spokeswoman Adrienne Jacobson said.Another fire sparked by lightning Monday in Rocky Mountain National Park has grown to an estimated 400 acres in area with trees killed by pine beetles.The cause of the fire near Colorado Springs wasn’t clear. The El Paso County sheriff said there were no reports of lightning Tuesday.Jaenette Coyne was among those who initially called 911 to report smoke behind her home. She quickly decided she needed to get out.“We had five minutes to leave before the flames were too close. We left with nothing,” she said.From a fire station, she and her husband watched on television as flames engulfed the house where they have lived since 2009.“I don’t know how to tell you in words what it felt like,” she said. “It’s the worst thing I’ve ever felt in my whole life.”She said their 20-month-old daughter has been asking when the family can go home and see their three cats, which likely died in the fire.“What do you do when you’ve lost everything?” she said.Meanwhile, fire evacuees Greg and Sharon Rambo set up camp in a Wal-Mart and Home Depot parking lot. They were living in a modular home in Black Forest as they waited to close on a larger house nearby. They believe both were burned.“It leaves you feeling numb, loss of appetite, disoriented,” Greg Rambo said.The couple previously lived in Southern California and were evacuated during a 2004 blaze that hopscotched over their property without damaging it. Since then, they have carried a briefcase filled with medications and important documents, and kept their trailer far from their house so they’d have a place to sleep in the event their home burns down.Their daughter, who lives nearby, called them Tuesday afternoon and urged them to flee. They do not know if her house also burned.Gov. John Hickenlooper declared disaster emergencies Wednesday for the Black Forest and Royal Gorge fires and a 60-acre fire in rural Huerfano County, authorizing a combined $10.15 million to help pay for firefighting and other costs.___Associated Press writers Steven K. Paulson, Ivan Moreno and Catherine Tsai in Denver, and AP Pro Football Writer Arnie Stapleton contributed to this report. by Thomas Peipert, The Associated Press Posted Jun 12, 2013 4:08 am MDT Wildfire burning out of control near Colorado Springs destroys 92 homes, evacuates thousands
Friday is now upon us so its time to sit back and relax (when you have your lunch break of course) by taking time out to view some Apple UI art masterpieces created by French artist Leo Caillard.His digital images were inspired after he visited some of Paris’s famous museums. He noted that people were only spending a couple of seconds looking at each work of art before quickly moving on to the next. This was to him similar to how people use their smartphones when viewing images.As he was already an Apple user he decided to create artwork based on the manufacturer’s UI and how he imagined people would be playing with the art that surrounded them (like they would do playing with pictures on their iPhone/iPad). A direct result was his Art Game digital paintings with iTunes, iOS and Mac OSX being the main themes (which is what you can see below). Read more at Wired via Leo Caillardlike they would do playing with pictures on their iPhone/iPad
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Love is in the air on Saturday, and in Brisbane Eros, the Greek god of love, invites you to attend a night of romance, dining and entertainment.Open to couples, or groups, attendees will be treated to the perfect Valentine’s Day menu. Consisting of three courses, the cost includes a selection of tasty mezze to choose from, a delicious traditional Greek main, and of course classic Greeks desserts like galactobouriko and baklava. Bookings are essential and cost $49.90 per person with a glass of house wine or beer, or $59.50 with a bottle of wine between two people.When: Saturday 14 February from 6.00 pm to 11.00 pm. Where: The Greek Club, 29 Edmondstone Street, South Brisbane, Queensland. For more information, visit www.thegreekclub.com.au or to make a booking, call (07) 3844 1166.
The American Soybean Association (ASA) applauds the Senate Agriculture Committee for its passage earlier today of legislation from Chairman Pat Roberts that would establish a national framework for the labeling of bioengineered food products, or GMOs. The legislation passed the committee with the support of all 11 Republican members, as well as Democrats Amy Klobuchar, Joe Donnelly and Heidi Heitkamp. ASA President and Delaware farmer Richard Wilkins praised Roberts’ leadership on the bill in a statement:”ASA is extremely pleased to see this bill come through committee, and we are very appreciative of the leadership shown by Chairman Roberts throughout the process. We’re also thankful for the Democratic support from Sens. Klobuchar, Donnelly and Heitkamp on this bill, as support from Senate Democrats will be key when the bill reaches the Senate floor in the coming weeks.”Now, our attention turns to the full Senate, and we will begin our press on senators from both parties to support this legislation. For soybean farmers, the bill represents our continued ability to use biotechnology within our operations. It means growing more while using less, and it means meeting the needs of a demanding American marketplace, and growing global population. We will communicate those benefits to senators every day until this bill is passed and signed into law.”
Share your voice Ruth Asawa created sculptures by weaving galvanized wire. Google May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month, which celebrates the culture, traditions and history of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the US.To kick off the celebration, Google dedicated its Doodle on Wednesday to Ruth Asawa, a Japanese-American artist who overcame discrimination during World War II to become a nationally renowned sculptor of wire forms and an arts educator who believed “art will make people better.”For almost as long as Google has been around, it’s livened up its barebones search page with artwork that draws attention to notable people, events, holidays and anniversaries. Google Doodles have celebrated, among many other things, Pac-Man’s anniversary, Copernicus’ birthday, Mother’s Day and the World Cup, as well as reminding us of lesser-known real-world heroes. Asawa was born in the Southern California city of Norwalk in 1926 to Japanese immigrants who worked on farms. As a young child, Asawa showed a keen interest in art, and as a teenager won first prize at a 1939 arts competition for her artwork on what makes someone an American. But at the onset of US involvement in WWII, Asawa and her family were forcibly relocated to internment centers for Japanese living on the West Coast of the US. During her internment, she continued to study art, and following her graduation from an internment center’s high school, she attended the Milwaukee State Teachers College, as ethnic Japanese were prohibited from attending college in California. She had intended to become an art teacher, but because she couldn’t get hired to perform required practice teaching due to her Japanese heritage, she left Wisconsin without a degree and transferred to the experimental Black Mountain College in North Carolina. 3 Tags It was during a visit to Mexico before her final year in Wisconsin that she was exposed to baskets made from galvanized wire by villagers. Drawing on the construction methods, she began to experiment with crocheted wire sculptures. Resembling weaving, her sculptures brought her prominence in the 1950s for their lightness and transparency. Her work appeared at exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the 1955 Sao Paulo Art Biennial. In 1962, Asawa began experimenting with sculptures based on nature that became increasingly geometric and abstract. “My curiosity was aroused by the idea of giving structural form to the images in my drawings,” she said. “These forms come from observing plants, the spiral shell of a snail, seeing light through insect wings, watching spiders repair their webs in the early morning, and seeing the sun through the droplets of water suspended from the tips of pine needles while watering my garden.”As her reputation grew, so did her opportunities for public commissions, especially fountains, for which she became known in San Francisco as the “fountain lady.” For one fountain near San Francisco’s Union Square, she encouraged 200 schoolchildren to mold hundreds of images of the city in dough, which were then cast in iron.She also designed the Japanese-American Internment Memorial Sculpture in San Jose, California, in 1994, and the Garden of Remembrance at San Francisco State University. Asawa was also a passionate advocate for arts education, championing its transformative and empowering qualities. “Art will make people better, more highly skilled in thinking and improving whatever business one goes into, or whatever occupation. It makes a person broader,” she said.She was the driving force behind the creation of the San Francisco School of the Arts, which was renamed the Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts in her honor in 2010.She died at her San Francisco home in 2013 at the age of 87. Comments 49 Photos Our favorite Google Doodles through the years Online Google Doodle
Senco Gold & Diamonds, one of the largest jewellery retail chains of India, launched a special ‘Pride Collection’ as a gesture of support for the LGBTQ community.A unique fashion show titled ‘Sphulingo – Freedom of Expression’ with a group of transgender men and women led by well-known Professor (College Principal) and LGBT activist Dr Manabi Bandyopadhyay dressed in mythological characters from Indian epics, sashayed down the ramp at Senco Gold and Diamonds’ mega shop on CIT road in Kolkata. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfEvoking the spirits and memories of the mythological figures, the group represented characters of Sikhondi (Shankori Mandal); Mohini (Rintu); Raja Vongashon (Sandipta Chhetri); Chitrangada (Sayantani Ghosh); Raja Ela (Roma Mandal); Krishna Koli (Pritam Mondol); Brihhonnola (Bikram) and Chandi(Dr Manabi Bandyopadhyay). The month of June is celebrated as the Pride Month across the world to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which occurred at the end of June 1969 as well as to recognise the impact LGBTQ people have had in the world. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveSpeaking on the occasion, Suvankar Sen, Executive Director, Senco Gold & Diamonds, said: “We have launched our Pride Collection in honour of the LGBT community, especially the transgender women on the occasion of Pride month. Many of these women have striven hard to achieve what they have in our society despite the odds stacked against them. We salute them and their indomitable spirits through this fashion show. The collection, immaculately crafted and designed, would appeal to all sections of buyers we cater to with different varieties that we offer from our stable.” The Pride Collection consists of uniquely designed gold and silver pendants named Trans Hearty, G-Rex and Less More. The Gold collection price starts from Rs. 16,000 and silver collection Rs 500 onward.
AVG Offline Installers by Martin Brinkmann on April 12, 2016 in Software – 6 commentsSoftware is pushed by AVG on its website in form of online installers which require an Internet connection during installation.The method has some advantages, namely that the most recent version of the program is installed whenever the installer is executed, and that the initial download is only a couple of Megabytes in size.While that is useful sometimes, you may sometimes need an installer that does not require an Internet connection. Those are called offline installers or full installers.Reasons for wanting a full installer may include because the computer you want to install the software on is not connected to the Internet all the time, or because the Internet connection is unstable or slow, or because you get an error when you are using the online installer.AVG Offline InstallersAVG, like many other companies, hides the offline installer and presents the online installer as the only choice on product pages.It is usually necessary to hunt down the full installer which is not as easy as it sounds (you find the links on support pages usually or sometimes not at all).The following links point directly to download pages on the official AVG website from where offline installers can be downloaded from (if provided at all).Since those may change frequently, we have made the decision not to hotlink the installers but to link to the download page (if available) instead which gets updated by AVG when new versions get released.AVG AntiVirus FreeThis is one of the two free offerings by AVG (the other is AVG Protection Free). AVG AntiVirus Free offers antivirus protection, and link protection which scans web links for malicious content.AVG AntiVirus Free 32-bitAVG AntiVirus Free 64-bitAVG AntiVirus ProThe Pro version of AVG AntiVirus ships with all features of the free version plus the following ones: Online shield that protects against malicious downloads, a data safe to protect files with a password, and free support.AVG AntiVirus 32-bitAVG AntiVirus 64-bitAVG Internet SecurityAVG Internet Security supports all features of AntiVirus Free and Pro, plus anti-spam, shopping protection, Mac & Android protection, and priority updates.AVG Internet Security 32-bitAVG Internet Security 64-bitNo Full installers for these AVG productsOffline installers for AVG Ultimate, AVG Protection Free and Pro are not available currently.The AVG website links only to online installers which in my opinion is an oversight by AVG even though these products are designed for managing multiple devices using AVG Zen.The security programs share features with the AVG products listed above but offer more features (even the free version).AVG Protection FreeOffers all features of AVG AntiVirus Free, plus Email protection (malicious attachments), and remote protection which allows you to scan PCs using your mobile device.AVG Protection ProThe program supports all features of AVG Protection Free, plus the following ones: Online shield to protect against harmful downloads, Data safe to store files securely, anti-spam to block email spam, an enhanced firewall, and priority updates.AVG UltimateUltimate supports all features of AVG Protection Pro and includes on top of that maintenance functionality similarly to what AVG Tune Up offers.Now You: Do you prefer offline or online installers?SummaryArticle NameAVG Offline InstallersDescriptionAVG Offline Installers provides you with links to full versions of installers for AVG products that don’t require an Internet connection during setup.Author Martin BrinkmannPublisher Ghacks Technology NewsLogo Advertisement