‘Chain reaction’ spreads gene through insects

first_imgOn 28 December 2014, Valentino Gantz and Ethan Bier checked on the fruit flies that had just hatched in their lab at the University of California (UC), San Diego. By the classic rules of Mendelian genetics, only one out of four of the newborn flies should have shown the effects of the mutation their mothers carried, an X-linked recessive trait that causes a loss of pigmentation similar to albinism. Instead, nothing but pale yellow flies kept emerging. “We were stunned,” says Bier, who is Gantz’s Ph.D. adviser. “It was like the sun rose in the west rather than the east.” They hammered out a paper and submitted it to 
Science 3 days later.In the study, published online this week, Gantz and Bier report that the introduced mutation disabled both normal copies of a pigmentation gene on the fruit fly chromosomes, transmitting itself to the next generation with 97% efficiency—a near-complete invasion of the genome. The secret of its success: an increasingly popular gene-editing toolkit called CRISPR, which Gantz and Bier adapted to give the mutation an overwhelming advantage. The technique is the latest—and some say, most impressive—example of gene drive: biasing inheritance to spread a gene rapidly through a population, or even an entire species. At this level of efficiency, a single mosquito equipped with a parasite-blocking gene could in theory spread malaria resistance through an entire breeding population in a single season (see diagram). Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)The paper comes amid intense soul-searching among gene drive researchers, with calls for public dialogue and self-
policing for the technology. George Church, a geneticist at Harvard Medical School in Boston who is a leader in the field, believes the new study should not have been published, because it does not include measures to restrain the spread of unintended mutations. “It is a step too far,” he says.Creating a gene drive system wasn’t Gantz’s original goal, Bier says. “We were just trying to solve a practical problem.” Gantz studies the development of fruit fly wing veins, for which he must create flies with multiple mutations. That’s typically painstaking work, requiring large numbers of flies over many generations to create a single multimutant. Last summer, Gantz made a tweak to the CRISPR system, in which an engineered bacterial protein, Cas9, uses a string of RNA to find and delete, replace, or otherwise edit a target DNA sequence. By equipping the CRISPR gene cassette with DNA sequences flanking the targeted gene, Gantz hoped to create a mutation that would “auto-catalyze.” Once incorporated on one chromosome, it would produce new copies of the CRISPR complex that would target and edit the gene everywhere it appeared.Bier realized that Gantz’s self-replicating gene cassette could cause gene drive. After discussions with UC San Diego, the university gave the experiment the green light if certain biosafety measures were taken: The flies are kept in three layers of tubes and boxes, and the lab is locked behind five doors with fingerprint security.Gantz and Bier knew they had achieved the first goal, making double mutants in one step, on 18 December last year, when yellow female flies developed from embryos injected with a CRISPR cassette targeting the X chromosome pigmentation gene. But they wanted to know whether the engineered gene could make it through the germ cells and invade the next generation. The yellow flies they saw on 28 December confirmed that it did, and with 
97% efficiency.The technique is “fantastic,” says geneticist Anthony James of UC Irvine, whose lab made the first transgenic mosquitoes nearly 2 decades ago with a far more laborious technique. Bier and James are already collaborating to create a mosquito equipped with genes designed to block the transmission of malaria and dengue fever—and to quickly spread through a population. “We’re hoping for results by the end of the year,” James says.It’s not the only horse in the gene drive race. Church’s group also has a CRISPR approach that works at near-perfect efficiency in yeast. It includes built-in precautions designed to prevent the system from running amok. For example, Church avoids incorporating Cas9’s gene and the targeting RNA sequence into a single cassette, so that unintended genes can’t become accidentally incorporated and spread. Because Gantz and Bier’s method does not have such safeguards, “it encourages a standard of behavior that is much lower than what we’re recommending,” Church says. “What will spread is not literally their mutant flies, but their protocol.”Bier rejects the criticism. “The safeguards that [Church] is using in yeast just can’t work in flies,” he notes. “I bristle when people say that we haven’t thought carefully about this,” adds James, who last year co-authored a World Health Organization report on precautions for use of transgenic mosquitos. “And how could we not publish this work? Nothing is served by hiding things. The whole point is to show that it is possible and have a 
public discussion.”Science has compiled some of its recent research papers, commentaries, and news articles on CRISPR and its implications in a special collection. G. GRULLÓN/SCIENCE last_img read more

Did you know these 10 famous personalities also held highly designated posts in the Indian Army?

first_imgMahatma Gandhi once said, “The future depends on what you do today.”So, once the thought of serving the country comes in your mind, you should make it happen as early as possible.Some people choose to follow their dreams from the beginning but some switch to them later on in life. There is no harm in choosing an alternative career option. Very few know about the great work that has been done by several prominent athletes, politicians, actors or other famous personalities, not in their field of renown, but in serving their nation.”From when I was a young boy, I read books on weapons and tanks and combat. I was so interested in the army. Then later, my profile as an Indian cricketer allowed me access to the real thing so I spent time with soldiers. The result of all this is was that I became an honorary lieutenant colonel,” shared MS Dhoni, while being conferred an honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel.Here’s a list of 10 famous personalities who have been conferred with different ranks in the Indian Army: 1. Sachin Tendulkar: The Master Blaster, Sachin Tendulkar, now retired from international cricket, was made an Honorary Group Captain of the Indian Air Force.2. Sachin Pilot: The then Union MoS for Telecommunication, Sachin Pilot was conferred the rank of Lieutenant in the 124 TA Battalion of the Sikh Regiment.3. Abhinav Bindra: 33-year-old Bindra, who remains India’s sole individual Olympic gold medalist having won the 2008 Beijing Olympic gold medal for shooting, was honored with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel by the Indian Territorial Army.advertisement4. MS Dhoni: India’s limited-overs captain MS Dhoni, had in 2011 pulled on the uniform of a commando as he was conferred an honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Parachute Regiment for outstanding contribution in the field of sports.5. Kapil Dev: Cricketer Kapil Dev, who led the Indian team to victory the 1983 World Cup, was commissioned into the Territorial Army (TA) as an honorary lieutenant colonel.6. Milkha Singh Milkha Singh is a former Indian track and field sprinter. He was promoted from the rank of sepoy to junior commissioned officer for his successful performance in the 1958 Asian Games.7. Mohanlal Vishwanath Nair: A Padma Shri awardee, Mohanlal Vishwanath Nair who has acted in almost 300 Malayalam films received the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Territorial Army of India.8. Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore: Ace shooter and former Olympic Silver medallist Lt-Colonel Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore became the first serving armed forces officer to endorse brands.9. Deepak Rao:  Deepak Rao, a scientist, author and physician who has been combating terrorism, was conferred the honorary commission in the rank of Major in the Territorial Army. He has also been an instructor in reflex shooting and deep sea diving.10. Anurag Singh Thakur:  BCCI President and BJP lawmaker Anurag Singh Thakur was commissioned into the Territorial Army.Lieutenant Thakur cleared the Services Selection Board (SSB) and was found fit for joining the Territorial Army. The officer has been commissioned in 124 Inf Bn (TA) SIKH.Click here for more education related news.For more details, follow India Today Education or you can write to us at education.intoday@gmail.comlast_img read more

Uruguay great Diego Forlan announces retirement from football

first_imgFormer Uruguay striker Diego Forlan has announced his retirement, bringing to an end a 21-year career in which he played club soccer on three different continents.Forlan, who started his career in South America with Argentine club Independiente, played for major European teams such as Manchester United, Villarreal, Atletico Madrid and Inter Milan before ending his career in Asia.Forlan, 40, was also instrumental in Uruguay’s run to the 2010 World Cup semi-finals, where he was awarded the Golden Ball for best player at the tournament and finished as one of the tournament’s top scorers with five goals.”After 21 years I made the decision to end my career as a professional footballer,” Forlan said in a statement.”A beautiful stage closes full of great memories and emotions but another of new challenges will begin. Thanks to all who in one way or another accompanied me on this path!”Forlan won the Premier League and FA Cup with United before moving to Spain where he helped Atletico win the Europa League in 2010 with a double in the final against Fulham.He also led Uruguay to the Copa America title in 2011, grabbing another two goals in a final, when they beat Paraguay 3-0.After a short stint in the Indian Super League with Mumbai City in 2016, he last played for Hong Kong Premier League side Kitchee Sports Club last year, wrapping up a career where he scored over 250 goals for club and country.last_img read more

Dan Patrick: “If this is Alabama, we care”

first_imgI’m sure you guys are thrilled with the “If this is Alabama, we care” statement.I actually agree with his overall viewpoint of college football. It’s embarrassing that we still call it an amateur sport.h/t Tulsa World on the clipIf 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! Some pretty interesting comments from Dan Patrick today on the Sports Illustrated/Oklahoma State story (that still hasn’t been released).last_img read more

Upbeat Moeen Ali to take break after losing his England Test contract

first_imgShare on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Adil Rashid: ‘If I don’t get a Test deal, I need to decide what to do next’ Moeen Ali believes a short break from competing for a Test spot could result in a strong comeback down the line after the all-rounder lost his England contract in the longest format.Ashley Giles, the director of England cricket, revealed on Friday that Moeen has requested a spell away from Test contention and he will now miss that part of the New Zealand tour, the squads for which are named on Monday. But while the talks that prompted this decision also ended in Moeen being stood down from the list of Test contracts – Jack Leach, who took his place during the Ashes, missed out on a main deal too – the 32-year-old is relaxed about the situation.Moeen told the Guardian: “I do feel I need a break from the longer format but not a massive one. We will see what happens after the New Zealand series. This could be just what I need.“It’s disappointing to miss out on a central contract but I’m also pretty chilled about it. Cricket has never been about the money for me. I have always relied on my faith and believe that everything will work out fine.”A near-mainstay of the Test side since his debut in 2014, Moeen had been England’s leading wicket-taker in the 12 months leading up to the summer’s drawn Ashes series. But a disappointing showing in the first Test at Edgbaston – one that came after losing his place in the World Cup side mid-tournament and just one seam-dominated match against Ireland – meant he was replaced by Leach. A Twenty20-heavy county schedule thereafter made an instant return difficult.Giles said: “For all guys, not just Moeen, it’s been a challenging summer. A World Cup and Ashes has had a massive effect on many of these guys psychologically as much as physically. He might just need to go away and freshen up.”Moeen, who is hoping to lead Worcestershire to back-to-back T20 Blast titles at Finals Day on Saturday after his blistering century against Sussex in the quarter-final, was contacted by Joe Root this week and told he still features heavily in their Test plans.The England captain’s move to do so is understandable, not least with a two-match series in Sri Lanka coming up in March and the leg-spinner Adil Rashid, who also lost his Test deal, now considering a return to white-ball specialism. Along with Leach, who has received an increment deal on top of his county wages, the pair were instrumental in the 3-0 win in Sri Lanka before Christmas last year. Support The Guardian Topics … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Moeen Ali Share on Messenger news Cricket Reuse this content Share on WhatsApp As well as the widely expected news that Jofra Archer’s stunning breakthrough summer has resulted in a multiformat deal and Rory Burns has also won a Test contract after a strong showing from opener in the Ashes, the most ruthless omission was Liam Plunkett’s absence from the white-ball list.The 34-year-old was something of a lucky charm during the World Cup, claiming three wickets in the final, with England winning each of the seven games he played. But while thoughts turn to the T20 World Cup in Australia next October – with Eoin Morgan having recommitted to his role as captain – the selectors appear to be moving on.Giles said: “Liam Plunkett has been a fantastic servant to the white-ball team – one of Eoin’s go-to men. But moving into a new cycle of four years before the 50-over World Cup and T20 as well in between, he probably didn’t fit those future needs.“I’m not saying the door’s closed but just in terms of the core of that team, which is where those contracts are offered, he just misses out. He’s incredibly fit and strong. In terms of numbers, I guess his pace has been down a little bit for some time.“But it’s also looking at those younger guys coming through. It’s difficult to be the person who puts that pen through the name, but that’s cricket.” Plunkett has made clear his feelings on missing out on the white-ball list, writing on Twitter: “Disappointed is an understatement.”Joe Denly, who ended the Ashes in encouraging fashion with three-half-centuries, missed out on a Test deal but was curiously awarded a white-ball contract, while Alex Hales and David Willey dropped out of this group altogether.On Hales, who was removed from the World Cup squad at the start of the season after failing a second recreational drugs test, Giles added: The door isn’t closed [on Alex]. He’s a very fine short-format player “[But] as Eoin Morgan has said, there’s a certain amount of trust that needs to be gained back.” Share on Twitter Read more Since you’re here… Share on Pinterest England cricket team Share via Email ECBlast_img read more

Trans Mountain CEO says pipe construction could restart in 2019 on NEB

first_imgCALGARY – The president and CEO of Trans Mountain Corp. says its sidelined pipeline project could be back on track by next year under a new National Energy Board hearing schedule, setting it up for a possible 2022 opening date.The timeline unveiled by the federal pipeline regulator on Wednesday is “reasonable and fair,” said Ian Anderson, the former CEO of Kinder Morgan Canada who became head of the resulting Crown corporation when Ottawa closed its $4.5-billion purchase of the pipeline and its expansion project in early September.WATCH:  Trans Mountain pipeline approval overturned He told reporters in Calgary it’s possible expansion project construction that was halted when the Federal Court of Appeal overturned its NEB approval earlier this month could be restarted in 2019.“Sure, it’s possible,” he said. “If things go according to the timeline that’s been now started with the NEB and they have a recommendation by the middle of February and the government takes a few months for additional consultation, an order-in-council could be as early as next summer.”He added construction is expected to take about 30 months, depending upon seasonal adjustments, which would mean the pipeline could be operational in 2022, about two years later than the most recent predicted in-service date.The federal government approved the Trans Mountain expansion project in November 2016, following a recommendation by the NEB.But the court cited insufficient consultation with Indigenous communities and a failure to assess the environmental impact of additional oil-tanker traffic in overturning that ruling.Last week, the federal government ordered the NEB to go back and conduct a review of tanker traffic, paying special attention to the affect on killer whales, and issue its report no later than Feb. 22.WATCH: AFN national chief suggests moving Trans Mountain pipeline route Environmentalists were quick to criticize the NEB’s schedule, which calls for public comments by next Wednesday on draft factors for the environmental assessment, the draft list of issues to be considered in the hearing and on the design of the hearing process itself.Indigenous groups who are affected by the marine shipping issues but weren’t allowed to engage in the previous NEB process because of scope limits might have a difficult time preparing submissions in time, said Keith Stewart, senior energy strategist with Greenpeace Canada.“Indigenous consultations are inextricably intertwined with review of marine impacts — orcas have important cultural significance — so charging ahead on this before sorting out the Indigenous consultation piece seems like a mistake,” he added.Furthermore, the process is tainted by the fact that the government insists the project it now owns will be built no matter what, Stewart said.The expansion will include a new pipeline running roughly parallel to the existing, 1,150-kilometre line that carries refined and unrefined oil products from the Edmonton area to Burnaby, B.C.It will nearly triple the capacity to 890,000 barrels a day.The NEB named Lyne Mercier, Alison Scott and Murray Lytle to the panel that will conduct its reconsideration of the project.Follow @HealingSlowly on Twitter.last_img read more

GM workers back to work after 2nd sitin at Oshawa plant

first_imgNext shift of workers at Oshawa stage sit down protest in the plant today in disgust after @GM refused Unifor proposals to #SaveOshawaGM #SellHereBuildHere pic.twitter.com/xpsOWnr7nX— Unifor Canada (@UniforTheUnion) January 9, 2019 Unionized workers at the General Motors assembly plant in Oshawa staged a second work-stoppage after the company confirmed it would not reconsider plans to close the facility.Unifor said the protest Wednesday morning lasted close to two hours before it ended and followed about a five-hour sit-down at the plant the evening before.The labour action came after union president Jerry Dias sat down with GM on Tuesday to talk about proposals the union had made to extend the life of the Ontario plant, but came away empty-handed.The union has emphasized the wider economic impacts of the shutdown and released a study Wednesday putting some hard numbers to the claims.“We’re looking at tens of thousands of jobs and a direct hit to the GDP,” said Unifor president Jerry Dias in a statement.“Should GM proceed with plans to close Oshawa, the economic impact would be substantial, both in the short and long term.”The economic analysis estimates the closure of the plant by the end of the year will result in 14,000 fewer jobs in Ontario and 10,000 fewer jobs outside the province by 2025, compared with keeping the assembly plant open.Those would include 4,400 jobs at GM Oshawa and its parts suppliers in Ontario that would be lost in 2020 as well as lost direct and indirect opportunities from keeping the assembly plant open for an additional five years.The closure would also cut Ontario’s GDP by $5 billion and mean $330 million less provincial government revenue next year, and lead by 2030 to about a billion dollars less in combined provincial and federal revenues, the study estimates.The company has said the options suggested by the union, including extending the life of the Chevy Impala and Cadillac XTS produced at the plant or shifting production slated for Mexico to the plant, are not economically viable.GM acknowledged the frustration that led to the work stoppages, but urged the union to instead work with the company on timing and transition plans for the approximately 2,600 unionized workers who are losing their jobs.“We understand our union’s frustration but need to now work together to deliver supports, transition and training for our employees for new opportunities over the coming year,” spokeswoman Jennifer Wright wrote in an email.GM said it has identified job opportunities, is willing to pay for retraining and is open to negotiations on packages for workers on top of what is already included in contracts.Unifor has refused to consider negotiations on a shut-down of Oshawa. The union has planned a rally in Windsor, Ont. Friday to coincide with a GM investor update.last_img read more

Oil trumped politics for top story of the year in Alberta poll

by Crystal Laderas Posted Dec 29, 2015 12:54 pm MDT Oil trumped politics for top story of the year in Alberta: poll AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Albertans have black gold on the brain, as they picked the dropping price of oil as the top news story of the year.Insights West says about three in four Albertans said the prices leading to layoffs and job losses were top of mind.The story beat out a year in big political changes, with 65 per cent of Albertans surveyed saying Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s election was at the top, and about the same amount said the biggest story was Rachel Notley becoming premier.Insights Spokesperson Mario Canseco says Alberta is also the only province it surveyed that put an economic issue as a top pick.He says unlike elections, most people stopped following the story once the ballots were counted.“The drop in oil prices continues to be one of the biggest issues, you know people certain looking at the election as something that was definitely drastic and new but more concentrating on the fact that the dropping oil prices are affecting more residents than the elections,” he said.Other stories that had a high percentage of votes included discussions about the Keystone XL pipeline, fatal police shootings, fentanyl overdoses and Connor McDavid being drafted to the Edmonton Oilers. read more

New Brock app aims to improve student connection

A new phone app is making it easier to stay engaged and in the know on Brock’s campus.Available for both iPhone and Android devices, the Brock University app provides live transit information, traffic reports, campus maps, a comprehensive list of student events and details on food venues on campus, among other features.The new creation is Brock’s third app, adding to the existing lineup that includes Brock Sports, with information on various sport and recreation activities, and the soon-to-be rebranded Brock Mobile, set to be renamed Brock Safety in the coming weeks to focus on University safety resources. More information on each app is available at brocku.ca/apps.The Brock University app, part of the BrockU 4U initiative, links back to the BrockU 4U website, where resources are available to assist with academic, wellness, safety and financial concerns.“The idea is to provide unique features through this app that are not available through the website — features you’d want to have in your pocket while on the go, like bus schedules, traffic conditions and the weather at Brock,” said Sebastien Marchal, the University’s Manager, Web and Digital Strategy. Users are able to configure the app to their favourite bus stops and routes to get up-to-date information about when various buses are leaving and arriving.When on the hunt for a quiet study space, the app can also be used to quickly check which floors of the University’s library are busier than others. The level of activity on each floor is estimated anonymously based on how many devices are connected to the Wi-Fi network in each location.“The information is fully dynamic and updated constantly,” Marchal said.Photos of study spaces across campus are also included with a brief description of the typical noise level in each area.The app is connected to ExperienceBU and includes all Brock-related events, as well as student clubs.“It’s intended to make it easier for students to stay engaged and to get involved in the community and life at Brock,” Marchal said. By ensuring students get the most out of their university experience, the hope is to encourage them to not only start but also complete their studies at Brock.Created with student consultation throughout the summer, the app will continue to evolve over time with new features added and changes made based on feedback received online.“We’ve packed a lot of cool features into the app in a short amount of time,” Marchal said. “It’s a foundation for the future and we’re going to keep building on it.” read more

Shelford Grammars Greek connection

first_imgRenee Yiannakis has been elected as one of the co-captains of Shelford Girls’ Grammar for 2012. She will follow in the footsteps of this year’s co-captain, fellow Greek Australian student Leah Tassios. As co-captains, both girls appreciate the opportunity this gives them to be leaders and also to work closely with other students and to encourage them to use their skills to enhance the community. Leah believes that Shelford is a special place where student achievements are celebrated. “Due to the strong sense of community you really share in the accolades for others and their sense of pride.” Renee is excited about the prospect of assisting students to develop better outcomes, and the opportunity to celebrate the variety of talents of the student population. She understands that leadership involves a team effort, that a leader cannot do everything on their own and that there are many opportunities for others to show leadership and initiative also. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

San Diego County home sales dip in August

first_img KUSI Newsroom SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Sales of single-family homes and attached properties in San Diego dropped in August compared to both the previous month and August 2017, according to data released Friday by the San Diego Association of Realtors.Realtors sold 1,902 single-family homes in August, an 8.1 percent decrease from the 2,070 sold in July. Sales of condominiums and townhomes dropped from 1,044 to 971 from July to August, a 7 percent decline.Year-over-year declines in home sales were even higher for both single- family homes and attached properties. The number of single-family listings sold fell from 2,325 to 1,902, an 18.2 percent decrease, and the condo and townhome listings sold fell from 1,174 to 971, a 17.3 percent decline.While the number of homes sold decreased across the board, median home prices increased in most cases by both month-over-month and year-over-year measures.“Despite some lackluster numbers in our region’s resale housing, the overall economy is performing well,” SDAR President Steve Fraioli said. “We particularly want potential buyers to know that the supply of homes on the market has grown nearly 20 percent from a year ago.”Median single-family home prices increased by 2.6 percent month-over- month from $653,250 to $670,000 but condo and townhome prices declined slightly, a 1.4 percent decrease from $431,000 to $425,000. Pricing of both home types increased substantially more compared to August 2017. Single-family home prices jumped 9.8 percent from $610,000 to $670,000 and attached property prices jumped 6.3 percent from $400,000 to $425,000.Rancho Bernardo West and Fallbrook led San Diego County in number of single-family homes sold in August, with 57 and 52 respectively. September 7, 2018 Posted: September 7, 2018 San Diego County home sales dip in August Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom, last_img read more

Lincoln Navigator Grammy ads star Serena Williams Abe Lincoln

first_img Lincoln SUVs Luxury cars Share your voice 2020 Kia Telluride review: Kia’s new SUV has big style and bigger value 2019 Lincoln Navigator: Pointing the way forward 2020 BMW M340i review: A dash of M makes everything better 2020 Hyundai Palisade review: Posh enough to make Genesis jealous Previously a digital-only ad, the second 2019 Lincoln Navigator commercial, a 30-second spot entitled “Namesake,” finds Abraham Lincoln as the recipient of an unexpected birthday gift. The ad’s broadcast premiere is seemingly well-timed, as its Grammy night debut is not far ahead of Lincoln’s birthday on Feb. 12, not to mention Presidents’ Day, Feb. 18.Beyond the historical heartstring tug and reminding viewers where the Lincoln brand draws its name from, there’s not much to this simple ad other than some well-meaning patriotism — the Navigator itself is barely shown in the ad at all.While Lincoln’s sales were down nearly 7 percent last year, the Navigator was the division’s lone bright spot, up a sparkling 69.5 percent year over year, selling nearly 18,000 units. In fact, it was the only Lincoln model to not lose ground versus the prior year.2019 looks like it could be a better year for Honest Abe’s brand, however, with its very-promising-looking 2020 Aviator three-row crossover SUV poised to hit the market this summer. For the past several years, Lincoln has centered its TV ads around the magnetically esoteric mannerisms of actor Matthew McConaughey. If the campaign’s goal has been to get people talking about Ford’s luxury brand, they’ve been a success, but it’s debatable whether they’ve effectively communicated the various attributes of the marque’s vehicles.Lincoln is premiering a pair of new ads during Sunday’s Grammy Awards, a new 2019 Navigator SUV ad campaign starring tennis megastar Serena Williams, and one channeling the brand’s namesake, Abraham Lincoln. More From Roadshow Comments Compared to Mr. “Alright Alright Alright,” Serena Williams’ spot does a markedly better — and more straightforward — job of talking up what makes Lincoln’s largest vehicle so posh. The 60-second commercial, called “Sanctuary,” doesn’t involve flogging the 450-horsepower 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6. In fact, it doesn’t so much as involve turning a wheel at all. Instead, the commercial catches the famously active Williams in a rare moment of indulgence — parked, relaxing in a Navigator during a driving rainstorm.Admittedly, “talking up” might be the wrong turn of phrase — the only person that says anything at all is legendary jazz singer (and Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winner) Sarah Vaughan, when Williams turns up her Navigator Black Label’s Revel Ultima audio system. The ad does a nice job of subtly showing off the SUV’s 30-way Perfect Position seats, touchscreen head unit and rear seat infotainment.In case you were wondering if Williams, who signed on as a Lincoln spokesperson in 2018, will eventually replace McConaughey, don’t bet on it. Ford spokesperson Angie Kozleski tells Roadshow, “Both Matthew and Serena are important brand ambassadors for Lincoln and play unique roles. Matthew has been a part of the launch of Lincoln’s newest vehicles for many years and most recently was in the Nautilus ad campaign that debuted during the college football playoffs in January.” Tags 45 Photos Read: How to watch the Grammys. 2 Lincoln Grammy Awardslast_img read more

Essar Power approaches banks for debt recast for Mahan project Report

first_imgPrivate power producer Essar Power has approached its lenders — a consortium led by ICICI Bank — for strategic restructuring of Rs 6,564 crore of debt, which the company borrowed from banks for Mahan Power Project, Moneycontrol reported.The report quoted unnamed banking officials as saying that as part of the debt recast, the company has offered to convert most of the debt into equity through dilution of its stake.The 1,200 MW Mahan power project was set up by Essar Power MP Ltd (EPMPL) — a subsidiary of Essar Power — in Singrauli district of Madhya Pradesh. Apart from ICICI Bank, Punjab National Bank (PNB), Power Finance Corporation (PFC), Rural Electrification Corporation Ltd (REC) and IDFC are the other lenders to the project.”Essar wants to give up majority stake in the unit. It is classified as a non-performing asset in our books now. ICICI Bank, being the lead lender, has to now call for a joint lenders forum meeting,” Moneycontrol quoted a bank official as saying. ICICI Bank has lent Rs 1,632 crore to the Mahan project, with PFC and REC lending Rs 1,345 crore each. The remaining amount was disbursed by PNB and IDFC. Total equity portion of the project stood at Rs 3,200 crore.”The company has submitted a proposal for restructuring of the debt. The company has been in discussion with the lenders for early approval of its proposal,” the report quoted Essar Power official as saying.Currently, Mahan Power project has one operational unit of 600 MW, while another unit of the same capacity is under construction. According to officials, it will take another 8-10 months for commissioning.Essar’s Mahan power project had faced problems from the very beginning as its first unit began operations in April 2013 after lying non-operational for quite some time due to non-availability of coal. It also lost the coal block allotted to the project as a result of the Supreme Court’s verdict cancelling allocations of 214 coal blocks in 2014.last_img read more

Language analysis reveals word popularity oscillates over 14year period

first_img How many nouns are in that garlic? Philosophy meets computational linguistics (Phys.org)—A pair of researchers has found that word use popularity tends to oscillate over 14-year periods. In their paper published in the journal Palgrave Communications, Marcelo Montemurro, with The University of Manchester in the U.K. and Damián Zanette with the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research in Argentina describe how they analyzed data obtained from millions of books publicly available in a Google database and found a cyclical pattern of word popularity. Credit: CC0 Public Domain © 2016 Phys.org Most people who live very long come to see that some words fall into popularity and then out again. While some that come into existence during certain periods of time, such as “rad” or “boogie” might disappear never to be heard from again, most common nouns, the researchers found, tend to have a cyclical popularity, and that for a reason they cannot explain, it happens in 14-year periods.To learn more about word use popularity, the researchers wrote scripts that were used to dig through almost 5 million books that have been digitized and stored in Google’s Ngram database. The scripts counted every noun encountered, which allowed the users to rank them by popularity year by year. They then tracked how the rankings changed over time and that was when they found a pattern. English nouns rose in popularity and then sank again in 14-year cycles—though they note that over the past couple of centuries, the cycles have been a year or two longer. They also found that some groups of nouns, such as those that referenced royalty, tended to rise and fall together in synced cycles. And other cycles, they found, tended to be connected with worldwide events such as wars or the Olympics. They noted, too, that the results were approximately the same when analyzing nouns in books written in other languages, which, they claim, suggests a universality to their findings.The researchers report that they are baffled regarding the cycle and its number of years—after conducting further searches, they acknowledge that they have no idea why the number 14 in particular is important, but suggest more research might be in order to find out.center_img Explore further Citation: Language analysis reveals word popularity oscillates over 14-year period (2016, November 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-11-language-analysis-reveals-word-popularity.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

If Palmer is as serious as Ochocinco said that co

first_imgIf Palmer is as serious as Ochocinco said, that could mean the Cardinals may have just been presented a good – and cheaper – option than Eagles quarterback Kevin Kolb.As the demand and price for Kevin Kolb has increased, the Cardinals may be forced to part with key players. The loss of a talented young player to a franchise on the cusp of rebuilding could be devastating, especially given the high likelihood of quality quarterbacks being available in next year’s draft. If Palmer does want out, the Cardinals should pick him up. At worst, he can be a stop-gap quarterback to get the team through one season until they can bring in a young, possibly franchise QB. He is dead serious kind sir.i spoke with him RT @musa90: @ochocinco is Carson Palmer really serious bout retiring if he doesn’t get traded?less than a minute ago via Echofon Favorite Retweet ReplyChad Ochocincoochocinco 0 Comments   Share   One candidate in the Arizona Cardinals quarterback search is “dead serious” about retiring unless he is traded.Want-away Cincinnati Bengals quarterback is serious about retiring unless he is traded, according to teammate Chad Ochocinco. Top Stories D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right awaylast_img read more

No teacher evaluations before safety issue resolved – unions

first_imgA plan to introduce a modern system evaluating teachers has been in the works for the past 35 years and does not seem to be coming any closer to reality after Poed union said on Wednesday they refuse to discuss it until matters of school health and safety are clarified.In a row between the education ministry and unions which unfolded over investigations into the death of 10-year-old Stavros Giorgallis matters concerning improper behaviour from teachers, have come to light particularly after Education Minister Costas Hambiaouris himself publicly admitted there are incompetent teachers that have psychological problems .According to Fylios Fylactou, leader of primary school teachers’ union Poed, introducing a “modern evaluation system” has been discussed for the past 35 years.“In the past 10 years, there have been more efforts,” he told the Cyprus Mail, adding that it was obvious they yielded no results.In December 2016, the education ministry published a proposal, currently on their website  outlining how the evaluation system would be modernised.It has since showed no signs of coming anywhere near to fruition though the education ministry was not immediately available to comment on why that is.Hambiaouris has called for a meeting with all respective stakeholders on May 29 to bring the topic back to the table.From the part of unions however, Fylactou said Poed refuses to broach the subject until the matter of schools’ health and safety is clarified.He maintains there are schools with buildings in an unacceptable state without proper gates or fencing and this should be addressed first, before teacher evaluations are brought up.“Until schools close on June 18 we will not discuss this,” he said, adding that when this matter was resolved they are willing to talk day and night.At present, teachers are scored out of a mark of 40 and according to the 2016 proposal, more weight is given in favour towards teachers who have been in the job for longer.The aim of the evaluation is catered to promotions and wage increases as opposed to improving the quality of their teaching.More specifically, out of the four sections of the evaluation, only one is related to the quality of teaching.The evaluation is carried out by one person –from the education ministry – and the teacher can object to the grade, requesting an improved mark.The new proposal aimed to introduce three officials who would carry out the evaluation, making the procedure more transparent and improving weaknesses in the system.Bridging the rift between Poed and the minister however seems to be becoming more distant after Fylactou posted on his social media a post accusing Hambiaouris of hounding teachers, the union and himself through his approach since the boy’s death.Fylactou’s post, addressed to teachers said “even if a child during class asks to go to the bathroom…think twice and thrice about what you’ll do. If something happens, touch wood, while the child is going to the bathroom, this man will tear you apart.“YOU (teacher, primary school teacher, etc) BE CAREFUL!!!! God protect you.”At a meeting with members on Wednesday, the union said they would not move forward with any strikes as it would be an offence to the memory of the boy. You May LikeHabit TribeThe Strange Reason Parents Are Now Gluing Pennies To The Bottom of Kids ShoesHabit TribeUndoHealthZapIf You Feel You Have Pride; See This List HonestlyHealthZapUndoI Like GermanyBienenstichI Like GermanyUndo Licences for ENI and Total to explore block sevenUndoFilm review: Child’s Play ***UndoFrom space heroes to artists: women written out of historyUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more

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" he said,上海419论坛Desmond, "I think it’s important for us to be competitive with other communities in the state. read more