J&K rural poll prospects look up

first_imgMore than 700 nominations have been filed for 250 panchayat seats in the Kashmir division that goes to polls in the first phase on November 17.Over 1,100 nominations have been submitted for 288 seats in the Jammu division, a senior government official said. The official said that 2,350 nominations were received for 2,000 wards in Kashmir and 4,500 for 2,130 in Jammu. October 30 was the last date for filing nominations for the first phase.The panchayat elections were held previously in April-May 2011 with an 80% voter turnout. J&K has 4,130 sarpanches (village heads) and 29,719 panches (panchayat members).Direct elections Panch is an elected member of one of the village wards, whereas a sarpanch is the head of a cluster of wards or a village. On July 12, the State Administrative Council under the chairmanship of then Governor N.N. Vohra had approved a proposal to amend the Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj Act, 1989, for conducting direct elections of sarpanches and panches. The high number of nominations indicates a healthy turnout in the coming polls, the official said.The municipal polls in the Kashmir Valley held in October after a gap of 13 years were marred by poor voter turnout, with only 4% polling. In the civic body polls held in four phases, 187 of the 1,145 seats went uncontested, of which 186 were in the Kashmir Valley.The first phase in Kashmir division mostly comprises panchayats in North Kashmir such as Kupwara (five blocks), Bandipora (three), Baramulla (five) and Ganderbal, Srinagar and Budgam (one each). The other blocks that go to the polls in the Kashmir division are in Kargil (four) and Leh (six) districts.The National Conference and the Peoples Democratic Party had boycotted the municipal polls. The panchayat elections are not held on party lines.Not on party lines“Since the political parties boycotted the municipal polls, the voter turnout was extremely low. We expect a better turnout in panchayat polls as it is not fought on party lines and is expected to help grassroots democracy,” said the official.J&K adopted most of the recommendations of the 73rd Constitutional Amendment Act that was passed by Parliament in 1993. The amendment provided constitutional status to the Panchayati Raj institutions.Following this, the financial powers of panchayats in J&K are being enhanced from ₹10,000 to ₹1 lakh. The panchayat elections will also pave the way for making available nearly ₹4,335 crore of the 14th Finance Commission central grants to the duly constituted local bodies.last_img read more

Chris Carson Has Been Terrific Since Returning From Injury

first_imgThere are plenty of talking points that came out of Oklahoma State’s 43-37 road win over Kansas State.Mason Rudolph put up the second-highest passing total of his career with 457 yards (fourth-highest in OSU history).The Cowboys were careless with the ball, coughing up three turnovers and committed some inopportune penalties on the road against a team that’s almost impossible to beat when you beat yourself.But one of the most surprising of talking points should be the Cowboys’ effectiveness running the ball.Oklahoma State was able to put up 180 rushing yards on a team that ranks first in the Big 12 in rushing defense. After Saturday’s game, Kansas State is still No. 12 nationally allowing 110.89 yards per game. The Wildcats started Saturday allowing only 102.25 yards per game.The 180-yard performance is not exactly staggering but was a good sign for a Cowboy team still trying to find its way on the ground. It was their third-highest rushing total of the year behind only the Baylor game (213 yards) and Kansas game (228 yards).The Cowboys averaged 6.9 yards per carry, thanks mostly to Chris Carson’s 9.9-yard average on seven carries and chunk-yardage runs from Rennie Childs and Barry J. Sanders. That 6.92 yard average is the best single-game average for the Cowboys since the 2013 Iowa State game.The biggest run of the day was undoubtedly Chris Carson’s go-ahead touchdown dragging two defenders 10-plus yards to the end zone to put the Cowboys up for good.Carson has been downright fantastic since coming back from a hand injury he sustained in Week 2 against Central Michigan. Since returning three weeks ago, Carson has averaged 7.2 yards per carry and has four touchdowns (three rushing) in three games.“I was proud of our ability to run the football,” said Mike Gundy after the game. “I thought Chris Carson was excellent. I thought twenty-seven was excellent.”The Cowboy running game is by no means where they want it but the gradual improvement of the offensive line and the emergence of Justice Hill should give Cowboy fans plenty to look forward to.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more


first_imgThere was wall-to-wall action on the final day of the X-Blades 2007 National 18 Years and Under Championships.As well as all the semis and grand finals for Plate, Shield and Championship, there were a number of other spectacles to keep the masses entertained.One surprise ingredient on the final day that had been absent for the first three days of the tournament was rain.Relentless, powerful, drenching rain which put a dampener on the creative licenses of teams but not on the spirits of the players and spectators. The footy wasn’t the only competition on offer. A ‘Scoot for Boots’ took place with some of the quickest players from the girls and boys’ competitions. The event involved picking up a ball on the five-metre line and dashing the length of the field to be the first to score. NSWCHS players Ricky Mason and Kimberly Resch won their respective races through the downpour, earning not only glory but a new pair of X-Blades boots. X-Blades also awarded a Player of the Tournament prize to Brisbane Cobras star Rhys Jacks. Jacks received a pair of boots and an X-Blades bag for his good form. Not to be outdone, KooGa awarded an apparel package to TouchWest talisman Jenaya Quan for her outstanding play throughout the Championships. There were interviews with the captains participating in each of the major games as well as coin tosses and insights from experts such as Australian Men’s Open coach Tony Trad, and Australian Women’s Coach, Kerry Norman. All in all the 2007 Championships were a fantastic success. Get ready for 2008!last_img read more

More Subsidized Portable Childcare Spaces Created

first_imgLow-income families in Nova Scotia will have greater access to child care with 150 new subsidized, portable child-care spaces, Community Services Minister Judy Streatch announced today, Sept. 25. “This is the first key component in the rollout of the new 10-year, Early Learning and Child Care Plan,” said Ms. Streatch. “We’re making child care more affordable for families who need it most and providing them with more flexibility to seek employment or training.” These subsidized portable spaces are worth about $7 million of the $130-million plan. There will be 400 more subsidized portable spaces created over the next five years. A subsidized portable space belongs to the child and is not fixed to a child-care centre. This means that a family accessing a portable space can take the space to another licensed centre if they move to a different area. “Quality and affordable child care is important to every parent,” said Mary Ellen Shatford, director, Through The Years Community Day Care and Community Centre. “These portable spaces will allow parents equal access to quality programs and allow them to choose a centre that meets their family’s needs.” The Department of Community Services provides more than 3,000 subsidized child-care spaces, including 759 portable spaces. All subsidized spaces are designated for children who are 12 years old or younger, at centres that provide full-day child care. The portable spaces will be distributed throughout the province. Parents who want more information should contact any Department of Community Services office or call 1-877-424-1177. The Early Learning and Child Care Plan will add more child-care spaces, increase subsidized spaces and provide ongoing support for the province’s child-care sector.last_img read more

Sisi urges Egyptians to vote on constitution in force

first_imgCAIRO – Egypt’s powerful army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi Saturday urged Egyptians to participate “in force” in next week’s referendum on a new constitution, billed as the first stage in the nation’s democratic transition.On July 3, Sisi overthrew Mohamed Morsi after massive protests against the Islamist president’s turbulent one-year rule. His ouster triggered unrest that has deeply polarised the country.Sisi urged the public to “assume their national responsibility of participating in force in the referendum in order to build a democratic and modern state that satisfies all Egyptians,” state news agency MENA quoted him as saying at a conference of high-ranking officials. The referendum on a revised constitution will be held on January 14 and 15 to replace the one suspended when Morsi was toppled.Sisi said Egypt was at the start of a “decisive stage” in its history, and the referendum will be “the first stage in the implementation of the road map after two unique revolutions that showed close ties between the people and the national army”.The military-installed authorities outlined a road map for a democratic transition after the ouster of Morsi, the country’s first democratically elected president.The plan provides for a referendum on a new constitution, followed by presidential and parliamentary elections by the middle of 2014.Sisi also urged the security forces to remain alert during the referendum to “create a safe atmosphere, so that the people can express their opinions freely”.Morsi’s Islamist supporters have called for a boycott of the referendum amid a brutal crackdown targeting them that has left more than 1,000 people killed in street clashes and thousands more arrested.last_img read more

Al Hoceima Protests Peaceful Demands Legitimate Moroccos Human Rights Council

Rabat – The president of the National Human Rights Council (CNDH) has called the protests in Al Hoceima city and its neighboring areas ‘peaceful’ and their demands ‘legitimate’.Invited as a guest on Moroccan TV show, “Dayf Al Oula,” on Tuesday, CNDH president Driss El Yazami, said that “protests in Morocco have increased from 10,000 to 16,000 protests per year,” noting that is a “healthy phenomenon shows that Moroccan citizens are aware of their rights and take to the streets peacefully to call for them.”Talking about the law of protests in Morocco, El Yazami said that the principle is “to inform authorities, not [receive] authorization,” saying that one of the recommendations that the CNDH issued is to “request for a permission” to stage a demonstrations. El Yazami went on further to say that the CNDH has a responsibility to proactively intervene if there is tension may lead to the violation of human rights.“We have followed [the protests] from the very beginning,” he said. “More than 99 percent of freedom of speech and protests are guaranteed in the Rif [Al Hoceima region].”El Yazami added that most demonstrations were peaceful except for a case of a protest where some police were put at risk of harm.“However, all that appeared is that the demonstrations are peaceful, carrying social legitimate rights,” he reiterated.El Yazami noted that the language used by the protestors sometimes cannot be “accepted,” such as the “underestimation of the association,” adding that it can hinder the council from playing the role of a mediator.The seven months of protests in Al Hoceima came following the death of Mouhcine Fikri, the fishmonger who was crushed to death in a trash compactor while protesting the confiscation of his merchandise by authorities on October 28, 2016. read more

UN envoy extends condolences over passing of former President of Sudan

31 May 2009The Secretary-General’s Special Representative to Sudan today commiserated over the passing of the African nation’s former President Jaafar Nimeiri. On behalf of the United Nations, Ashraf Qazi extended his condolences to both the bereaved family and to the people of Sudan.According to media reports, Government officials announced on Saturday that Mr. Nimeiri, who ruled strife-torn Sudan for 16 years between 1969 and 1985, died at the age of 79 after a long struggle with an unspecified illness.Mr. Qazi also voiced deep concern on Saturday over deadly tribal clashes in Upper Nile and Jonglei states in southern Sudan which have left hundreds killed, including many women and children, and thousands displaced. “In recent months, the death rate in southern Sudan from violent conflict has been higher than in Darfur,” Mr. Qazi, who also heads the UN peacekeeping mission in Sudan (UNMIS), said on the conclusion of a two-day visit to the affected areas.At the beginning of May, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said that up to 1,000 people have been killed and over 100,000 uprooted from their homes since January in seven states in Southern Sudan due to violence in the region.Earlier UNMIS had dispatched some 120 civilian, military and police personnel to Jonglei State, where thousands were taking refuge, in a move aimed at supporting the Government of Southern Sudan in the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), and in providing humanitarian assistance and protection to civilians in the state.Urging the international community, as well as regional and the local actors to address the situation as an urgent priority, Mr. Qazi said that a “secure environment is extremely important for the conduct of elections and the referendum,” underscoring the importance of peacefully implementing the 2005 CPA that ended a 21-year civil war between north and south Sudan.UNMIS was established by the Security Council to support the Agreement, which was signed by the Government of Sudan and the Sudan People”s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A), and in his latest report on Sudan, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned that if the CPA collapsed, a humanitarian catastrophe could ensue. read more

Brexit ExPM vows legal action if UK Parliament suspended

LONDON — A former British prime minister has threatened to take Conservative Party leadership candidate Boris Johnson to court if he tries to suspend Parliament to deliver a no-deal Brexit.John Major’s comments follow a televised debate between Johnson and Jeremy Hunt, who are seeking to replace Prime Minister Theresa May. In one of the clashes, Johnson refused to rule out bypassing Parliament to prevent lawmakers from blocking a no-deal departure from the European Union on Oct. 31.Major told the BBC on Wednesday it would be “utterly and totally unacceptable” for any British leader to shut down Parliament — and that he would seek a judicial review to stop it.Major said “you cannot and should not bypass Parliament in this fashion.”Hunt has ruled out such a suspension.The Associated Press read more

Ottawa to run biggerthanexpected deficits over coming years budget watchdog

OTTAWA — A new analysis by the federal budget watchdog says the government is on track to run deeper-than-expected deficits in each of the next few years.The parliamentary budget officer also says there’s only a 10 per cent chance the federal books will return to balance in 2021-22 and a 30 per cent chance of seeing black ink in 2023-24.The report predicts Ottawa is on pace to show a $19.4 billion deficit this year, which is $1.3 billion higher than the Liberal government’s projection in its budget last February.Hot economy puts onus on Bank of Canada amid Ottawa’s deficit spendingOttawa’s annual spending breaches $300B for first time, pushing up Canada’s debt ratioWhat a couple of kids at the CNE can teach the government about budgetingBeyond this year, the watchdog says Ottawa will post annual shortfalls between $500 million and $2.8 billion bigger than the government’s predictions.The report points to recent changes in how the government calculates its pension liabilities as key factors behind the higher deficits.The fate of the budgetary balance is expected to be a major campaign issue ahead of next year’s election.The Trudeau government has frequently come under fire from political rivals for abandoning its 2015 vow to run only modest shortfalls and to eliminate the deficit by 2019.Last week, the government’s latest annual financial report showed Ottawa posted a $19-billion deficit last year, which was slightly smaller than the shortfall it had predicted in the budget.The federal bottom line has received a revenue boost over the last year thanks to the stronger economy — but the Liberal government has channelled large amounts of the extra cash into new spending that it argues will lift Canada’s long-term growth. read more

WHO tends to 40000 pregnant women left homeless by tsunami

“We need to provide skilled care to these 40,000 mothers-to-be, and pay special attention to the thousands of new lives coming into the world in the coming weeks,” World Health Organization (WHO) Assistant Director-General for Family and Community Health Joy Phumaphi said.“We must do everything we can to save the health and future of the affected communities. Timely access to health facilities and services for mothers and babies must be a priority,” she added of the programme directed principally to Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka and the Maldives.The Director for WHO’s Southeast Asia Region, Samlee Plianbangchang, noted that in a disaster where entire families and neighbourhoods have been lost, mothers, newborns and young children are the most vulnerable.“Even under normal circumstances, maternal and child health is a matter of major concern in the Region,” he said. “Maternal deaths in this region account for one third of the total number of global deaths and over 3 million children die below the age of 5 in this region annually, mostly from preventable causes. The tsunami has further added to the pressure.”WHO, in its role as technical coordinator for all health assistance in affected countries, has stressed the need for every camp to have a pregnancy and childbirth care site that provides antenatal, childbirth, postpartum and newborn care. It addresses special food needs, including nutritional enhancement and support for mothers to exclusively breastfeed newborns.For young children, WHO is emphasizing the need for providing treatment for diarrhoea, measles, malaria and malnutrition. Simplified guidelines for integrated management of common childhood illnesses have also been disseminated to countries for their use. read more

Commentary Lets enjoy Ohio State football in 2011 regardless of NCAA cloud

For Ohio State football fans, life hasn’t been the same since December 2010.Buckeye fans grieved when the news broke that one former and five current OSU football players had sold memorabilia and received improper benefits. Then prognosticators and so-called experts foretold of the NCAA punishment that awaited OSU, and fans’ fears grew.Speculation of seemingly certain NCAA sanctions kept OSU supporters on edge throughout the spring, even as the football team commenced spring practice.Then, on April 23, the day of the OSU Spring Game, the atmosphere at Ohio Stadium just wasn’t the same as previous Spring Games. Sure, the game’s ridiculous scoring system that no one understood probably had a bit to do with it, but there some was something more.It was something about you, the usually boisterous, scarlet-and-gray-clad fans — you didn’t have your swagger.And before you could recover it, the casualties began to mount.Former coach Jim Tressel was forced to resign and embattled former quarterback Terrelle Pryor left the school.On Thursday, Pryor was granted eligibility for the NFL’s supplemental draft but will serve a suspension through Week 5 of the NFL season.Why bother regrouping from the losses of Tressel and Pryor, though? After all, television commentators would have had us believe that the city of Columbus itself would disappear off the map on Aug. 12, the day OSU was to meet with the NCAA.The night of Aug. 11, was like the night prior to the predicted expiration of the Mayan calendar. Recovering your mojo was out of the question. Now, it was a matter of simply surviving the coming day’s NCAA scrutiny of OSU football.But then a miraculous thing happened.The meeting with the NCAA came and went without incident and the parties whom attended dispersed about four hours later. New OSU football coach Luke Fickell came back to Columbus after the meeting and, presumably, continued with his preparations for the 2011 season.True indeed,  NCAA punishment may be delivered to Buckeyes football in eight to 12 weeks, but preparations continue for the upcoming season.Your prep work as fans, which could include everything from stockpiling tailgating supplies to selecting new outfits to wear to the ‘Shoe this fall, should continue as well.When the kicker for either Akron or OSU steps to the tee on the 35-yard line around noon on Sept. 3 to kick the ball off and commence the 2011 campaign, what will you do in your seat in the ‘Shoe?Will you “boo?” Will you sit on your hands? Will you hesitate to clap and cheer?Will you do nothing?As of Friday, kickoff is just 15 days away, so I recommend you quickly decide how you’ll receive this 2011 edition of the Buckeyes.It’s true — the NCAA could administer a postseason bowl ban or take away scholarships or prevent OSU from competing in the inaugural Big Ten championship game in Indianapolis. On top of that, it could make the announcement right in the middle of a season that figures to see the Buckeyes compete for supremacy in the newly formed Leaders Division.There’s only one 2011 season, though, and even if the postseason isn’t available to the Buckeyes by regular seasons’s end, 12 games of Ohio State football would be a terrible thing to waste.Consider and appreciate the football team’s new freshmen class that, for the time being, appears to have committed itself to OSU and serving whatever punishment could be coming from the NCAA.Relish in the Big Ten’s expansion and the arrival of Nebraska football to the conference. Many OSU fans will likely make the trip to Lincoln, Neb., for the first in-conference meeting between the Buckeyes and the Cornhuskers — truly a historic moment.And why not continue to rabidly anticipate the next installment of “The Game”? I have a feeling that another victory against the hapless Wolverines will cure what ails weary Buckeye fans.Ready or not, the 2011 season is nearly upon us. It may have seemed as though the fog of the NCAA’s investigation would never lift, but it has, even if only for the few months until the NCAA’s final decision is announced.So, what will you do when the kicker strides toward the tee to kick the 2011 season off? Boo? Clap? Cheer? Sit on your hands?Whatever you choose to do, just make sure you find your seat in the ‘Shoe in time to see the marching band enter the playing field and perform Script Ohio.The sight of Script Ohio should help you rediscover your swagger as a fan base, and the wins that follow certainly will. read more

Breast cancer screening scandal could have affected an extra 140000 women expert

Professor John Newton, PHE director of health improvement, disputed the analysis.He said: “This is a flawed analysis which fails to take into account some important facts, such as when the breast screening programme was rolled out to all 70-year-olds in England or when a clinical trial was started called Age X.”Our top priority is making sure that all the women that did not receive an invitation for a screen are supported.”The independent review will look at all aspects of the Breast Screening Service to identify any lessons PHE and the NHS can learn.” An error that led to hundreds of thousands of women missing out on breast screening invitations could date back further than previously thought and have affected an additional 140,000 people, a cancer expert has said.Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt revealed earlier this month that 450,000 women aged 68 to 71 had not been invited to their final routine screening due to a computer error dating back to 2009.But Professor Peter Sasieni, a cancer screening and prevention researcher at King’s College London, believes the problems could have started as early as 2005. Public Health England (PHE) said his analysis is “flawed”.Prof Sasieni studied data from the breast cancer screening programme between 2004 and 2017, looking at the number of eligible women who were sent invitations each year from the ages of 45 to 70.In a letter published in medical journal The Lancet, Prof Sasieni said that between 2004 and 2005 – when the programme was extended to the age of 70 – the number of invitations sent to women aged 65 to 70 was “very low”. Professor John Newton, director of health improvement at PHE, told the BBC: “This is a flawed analysis which fails to take into account some important facts, such as when the breast screening programme was rolled out to all 70-year-olds in England or when a clinical trial was started called Age X.”He said PHE was focused on supporting those not invited to their final screening.An independent review has been launched into the computer error, which Mr Hunt said was discovered in January and may have led to up to 270 women having their lives cut short. By comparison, between 34 per cent and 38 per cent of people aged 50 to 64 were invited each year.The difference amounts to 140,000 between 2005 and 2008 – adding up to a total of more than 502,000 missing out since 2005, Prof Sasieni concluded. A third of eligible women should have been invited every year – but Prof Sasieni claimed the figures showed it was 31 per cent in 2005-06, rising to almost 35 per cent in 2016-17. The letter states: “Data that might have alerted people to the lower-than-expected number of invitations being sent to women aged 70 were publicly available, but no-one looked at them carefully enough.”Some of the fault lies in the way the data was presented, but it is also unclear whose responsibility it is to monitor such outcomes.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

OMA member profile on homegrown global mine contractor Redpath

first_imgIn an inconspicuous building in North Bay sits the worldwide headquarters of The Redpath Group – one of Canada’s largest mining contractors. The seven clocks in the reception area demonstrate the international extent of Redpath’s operations on five continents. Established in 1962, Redpath provides expertise and services to a client list that includes the names of virtually every major Canadian and international mining company. The company’s primary list of services includes shaft sinking, mine development, contract mining, raiseboring, underground construction and engineering services. Redpath also offers specialty services such as civil infrastructure by conventional drill and blast, or continuous, mining methods. Dedicated to “safety – first, last and always” the company’s performance around the world validates this commitment and position as a safety leader in the underground mine contracting business. With a world of experience and no geographic boundaries, Redpath has successfully completed complex mine development and construction projects in remote and challenging locations such as the tropics, the Gobi Desert, the Arctic and high altitude regions in Asia and South America.“Redpath has been on a path of renewal and growth over the past several years and we are currently doing projects in 10 countries around the world and the most impressive thing to me is how our employees, which currently number 3,500, have adapted to change and embrace new and safer ways of doing things,” said George Flumerfelt, President and CEO of Redpath. “As we’ve grown from being a regional competitor to one with a global reach, our people have never forgotten the importance of delivering quality service to our clients.”In addition to the mine contracting business, from its base in North Bay, Redpath is also a designer and manufacturer of high-technology mining equipment — the Redbore family of raisedrills. This specialty mine equipment fleet includes the Redbore 5OUR upreaming drill and the newest addition is the Redbore 100, the largest raisebore dill in the world. This equipment has the capacity to drill raises eight metres in diameter and 1,000 metres in length.Redpath is an active and long serving member of the OMA. Redpath President and CEO Mr. Flumerfelt, who is currently a director of the Association, recently completed his term as the 76th chairman of the OMA. The company is a leader in mineral education, sponsoring North Bay Mining Week activities and initiatives of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum Northern Gateway Branch. For more information on Redpath visit www.redpathmining.com.last_img read more

US Supreme Court to hear case of race discrimination by University of

first_imgNINE YEARS AFTER the Supreme Court in the US said colleges and universities can use race in their quest for diverse student bodies, the justices have put this divisive social issue back on their agenda in the middle of a presidential election campaign.Nine years is a blink of the eye on a court where justices can look back two centuries for legal precedents. But with an ascendant conservative majority, the high court in arguments yesterday weighed whether to limit or even rule out taking race into account in college admissions.The justices will be looking at the University of Texas program that is used to help fill the last quarter or so of its incoming freshman classes. Race is one of many factors considered by admissions officers. The rest of the roughly 7,100 freshman spots automatically go to Texans who graduated in the top eight per cent of their high school classes.A white Texan, Abigail Fisher, sued the university after she was denied a spot in 2008.The simplest explanation for why affirmative action is back on the court’s calendar so soon after its 2003 decision in Grutter v. Bollinger is that the author of that opinion, Sandra Day O’Connor, has retired. Her successor, Justice Samuel Alito, has been highly skeptical of any use of racial preference.Justice Anthony Kennedy, a dissenter in the 2003 decision, probably holds the deciding vote, and he, too, has never voted in favor of racial preference.As a result, said Supreme Court lawyer Thomas Goldstein, “No matter what the court does, it is quite likely that the UT program is going to be in big trouble.”The challenge to the Texas plan has gained traction in part because the university has produced significant diversity by automatically offering about three-quarters of its spots to graduates in the top 10 per cent of their Texas high schools, under a 1990s state law signed by then-Gov. George W. Bush. The admissions program has been changed so that now only the top eight per cent gain automatic admission.More than eight in 10 African-American and Latino students who enrolled at the flagship campus in Austin last year were automatically admitted, according to university statistics. Even among the rest, both sides acknowledge that the use of race is modest.In all, black and Hispanic students made up more than a quarter of the incoming freshmen class. White students constituted less than half the entering class when students with Asian backgrounds and other minorites were added in.Defence“For decades, the defense of racial preferences was, ‘We’d love to find a way to get diversity without using race, but it’s just not possible. There’s just no other way.’ And Texas found another way,” said Richard Kahlenburg, a senior fellow at the Century Foundation and prominent advocate of class-based affirmative action.The university says the extra measure of diversity it gets from the slots outside automatic admission is crucial because too many of its classrooms have only token minority representation, at best. At the same time, Texas argues that race is one of many factors considered and that it “is impossible to tell whether an applicant’s race was a tipping factor.”The Obama administration, 57 of the Fortune 100 companies and large numbers of public and private colleges that could be affected by the outcome are backing the Texas program. Among the benefits of affirmative action, the administration argues, is that it creates a pipeline for a diverse officer corps that it called “essential to the military’s operational readiness.” In 2003, the court cited the importance of a similar message from military leaders.But lawyers for Fisher, of Sugar Land, Texas, said the race-blind method under which the university automatically admits most of its students has been successful. They say Fisher, who has since graduated from Louisiana State University, was excluded because of her race, and they point to a handful of African-American and Latino students who were admitted with lower scores than hers.“If any state action should respect racial equality, it is university admission,” Fisher’s lawyers said in their written submission to the court.The university says that a fuller picture of the process shows that white students with lower scores also were admitted, while many more minority students with higher scores than Fisher also were not offered admission.The case also raises several contentious side issues, including whether affirmative-action programs hurt the very people they are supposed to be helping. A new book by law professor Richard Sander and journalist Stuart Taylor argues that “large preferences often place students in environments where they can neither learn nor compete effectively, even though these same students would thrive had they gone to less competitive but still quite good schools.”Their book, “Mismatch,” says these students are set up to fail, getting lower grades and dropping out more often than white students with similar backgrounds.Taylor and Sander, a law professor at the University of California at Los Angeles, point to statistics in California to support their argument. After voters changed the state constitution to outlaw racial preferences, UCLA saw significant declines in enrollment by black and Hispanic students.But the number of African-American and Latino graduates was unchanged for the five classes after the ban when compared to the five years before the change in state law, they said.The dozens of legal briefs in the Texas case also highlight a debate over whether racial preference programs actually limit the number of students from Asian backgrounds, who are disproportionately represented in student bodies relative to their share of the population.The university says Asian-American enrollment has increased under the policy that is being challenged. The numbers would be even higher if Texas stopped factoring in race, Fisher and others say.last_img read more

Bio Robot Refrigerator will keep your food cool in the year 2050

first_imgRead more at Electrolux, via Yanko Design The concept of using a box to cool food is one that’s been in existence since the mid 1700s and one that’s not going to change any time soon. One thing that may change by the year 2050, however, is the way that food is cooled.Electrolux Design Lab holds a yearly competition to create home appliances, and each year there’s a particular theme. The theme for 2010 was “The 2nd Space Age,” where students were tasked to redesign household appliances  for the year 2050 that will not only take up less space but also use less energy, both of which will be at a premium in the future. All products have to stick with “Scandinavian Design values,” which Electrolux says includes environmental sensitivity, intuitive use, and pleasing to the eyes. Think IKEA.AdChoices广告Russian student Yuriy Dmitriev came up with the Bio Robot Refrigerator which uses a “biopolymer gel through luminescence” to keep its food cold. This device doesn’t look like a normal fridge with a door and separate compartments. The Bio Fridge would be made of a lime-green-colored odorless non-sticky gel that literally morphs around each item placed into the fridge. It looks like something out of a 90s Nickelodeon commercial or something you’d expect to see in a sci-fi flick. When you’re ready to get your food, you simply reach through the gel and grab the product.It’s just one large piece of gel surrounded by a frame, so there are no drawers or doors. It can be hung vertically, horizontally, or even on the ceiling, which seems a little strange, but if we’re really going to be so hard up for space in 40 years, it may be necessary. The Bio Fridge is four times smaller than a normal-sized fridge. It also doesn’t have any moving parts, which means you’ll no longer hear that annoying hum of your old fridge when you’re trying to sleep at night.In the second video below, Electrolux design director Lars Erikson says that the fridge “encapsulates the objects” and the gives it the right temperature to keep each object cold. Erikson says that we’ll probably need to have products that are more decorative since we won’t have the space to hide them away in the future. Skip to the 1:03 mark in the first video to hear about the Bio Fridge.Though this is still a concept, it will be interesting to see how the Bio Fridge shapes up in the future. At least you’ll be able to see everything in your fridge in plain view so you won’t wonder what that nasty smell is for days and finally go searching through your fridge and find that old block of cheese rotting in the back.The deadline for the 2011 competition was Sunday, May 1, so we should be seeing some new designs soon. The theme for the 2011 competition was “Intelligent Mobility,” so let your imaginations run wild with that one.last_img read more

Steampunk NES system proves retro gaming is still cool

first_imgIt has been nearly 27 years since the launch of the original NES system in the US, yet there continue to be fans who are as die-hard as ever. Enter Reddit user Andrew5785, who created what is no doubt one of the niftiest mods for an old-school gaming platform.Using copper sheet, aluminum, metal, spring clips, plumbing fittings, closet door hardware, rivets, and the technical expertise required to transfer all the innards of a classic Nintendo console into a brand new housing, he managed to create a “Steampunk” NES console mod.This is why video game fanatics are so awesome. Never would anyone see something like this officially released from a major gams console company, even though everyone who sees it instantly wants one. Of course, this isn’t the kind of thing that one could put on an assembly line for mass production. As a result, only one lucky person — Andrew5785’s nephew, gets to be the owner of such a unique piece of hardware.The market for old-school gaming proves to be just as strong as it always has. Case in point — an official new Neo Geo console will be released for the holiday season. It is the non-official, fan-made creations that are the most interesting, though.From the NES electric guitar mod to the iPad NES mod, old-school video games merging with new technology has become a staple of the industry. And it is telling that even with the incredibly sophisticated technology available today, there are still gamers who cling to the era of yesteryear. Who knows what the next awesome retro game contraption will be.Imagur, via Redditlast_img read more

Twitter un adolescent de 17 ans à lorigine de la faille

first_imgTwitter : un adolescent de 17 ans à l’origine de la failleAustralie – Lundi et mardi derniers, des utilisateurs de Twitter ont vu leurs pages détournées vers des sites pornographiques et leurs statuts infectés par des vers. Un adolescent australien aurait involontairement donné l’astuce à l’origine de cette faille aux hackers.”Je voulais juste voir si l’on pouvait intégrer du langage Javascript sur les tweets”, explique le jeune garçon à l’AFP. “Jamais je n’aurais pensé que ça irait aussi loin.” Par cette action, Pearce Delphin a ouvert une brèche dans Twitter. Des pages web indésirables s’ouvraient ainsi dès que le curseur de la souris passait au-dessus des tweets contaminés. Des hackers en ont profité pour rediriger les utilisateurs vers des sites pronographiques et créer des tweets infectés de vers, qui se propageaient lorsqu’ils étaient lus. Tweeter assure avoir réparé la faille le mois dernier, mais une mise à jour aurait rétabli l’erreur. Néanmoins, la direction du site assure qu’aucune donnée personnelle n’a été collectée.Le 23 septembre 2010 à 12:18 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Un intestin vieux de 150 ans dévoile le génome dune ancienne bactérie

first_imgUn intestin vieux de 150 ans dévoile le génome d’une ancienne bactérie du choléraDes chercheurs canadiens et australiens ont réussi, pour la toute première fois, à identifier la souche “classique” de la bactérie Vibrio cholerae responsable du choléra. Ils sont en effet parvenus à séquencer son génome à partir de l’ADN de la bactérie extrait d’un intestin d’un homme mort du choléra en 1849.Le choléra a fait des millions de morts au XIXe siècle. Mais la maladie est loin d’avoir disparu et continue même de décimer les populations dans les pays les plus pauvres. Selon l’Organisation mondiale de la santé (OMS), trois à cinq millions de nouveaux cas seraient recensés chaque année et 100.000 à 120.000 morts (en raison notamment des diarrhées importantes qui entrainent une déshydratation extrêmement sévère). Seul le premier de deux types de choléra (le “classique”), considéré comme responsable de cinq des sept épidémies ayant sévi au XIXe siècle, avait été partiellement identifié. En effet, il était jusqu’ici difficile d’étudier d’anciens échantillons puisque la bactérie atteint les intestins et ne laissent donc pas de traces ADN dans les os. Mais des chercheurs de l’Université McMaster au Canada ont aujourd’hui réussi à en savoir plus sur l’évolution de la bactérie. Une souche plus virulente ?  En menant une étude sur l’intestin d’une personne décédée du choléra en 1849 et dont les tissus étaient conservés dans un musée d’histoire médicale de Philadelphie, les scientifiques ont pu identifier les premières souches de la bactérie Vibrio cholerae et séquencé leur génome. Ils ont ainsi confirmé la présence de la souche dite “classique” qui serait selon eux responsable de cinq des sept épidémies observées au cours du XIXe siècle, pour la plupart originaire du Bengale.Grâce au séquençage du génome, les chercheurs ont également pu en apprendre plus sur cette souche et ses différences avec la souche moderne connue sous le nom de El Tor. D’après les résultats publiées dans la revue New England Journal of Medicine, des “îles génomiques”, autrement dit des régions génétiques, ont été identifiées dans la souche classique alors qu’elles n’existent pas dans la souche moderne, responsable de la majorité des épidémies.Ajouté à cela, une séquence particulière connue pour être impliquée dans la toxicité du pathogène est apparue davantage répétée dans la souche ancienne. Ceci suggère que cette dernière était peut-être encore plus virulente, bien que l’hypothèse reste à vérifier. Les scientifiques ont également déterminé que les deux souches ont probablement co-existé chez les humains et dans l’eau d’estuaires pendant de nombreux siècles, voire davantage avant l’émergence des pandémies au XIXe siècle. Mieux comprendre la maladie pour mieux la traiterÀ lire aussiMaladie de Charcot : symptômes, causes, traitement, où en est on ?”Comprendre l’évolution d’une maladie infectieuse représente un énorme potentiel pour comprendre son épidémiologie, comment elle évolue au cours du temps et les facteurs favorisant sa transmission entre les humains”, assure un des co-auteurs, le Dr Hendrik Poinar repris par l’AFP.”Cette avancée permet d’améliorer considérablement la compréhension des origines de cette bactérie et laisse espérer de meilleurs traitements et potentiellement une prévention”, soulignent les auteurs de l’étude publiée dans la revue New England Journal of Medicine.Le 11 janvier 2014 à 11:39 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Ni no Kuni II Revenant Kingdom is Deceptively Complex in a Good

first_imgStay on target Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch is one of the more noteworthy JRPGs of the past five years. This is due in large part to the involvement of Studio Ghibli. The game was both a critical and commercial success (especially in the West). Despite suffering a couple of delays, Level-5 is finally releasing Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom. After spending two weeks with it, I can finally share my thoughts about the game. Ni no Kuni II is a phenomenal JRPG thanks to its innovative gameplay mechanics, endearing story, and charming visuals.Ni no Kuni II centers on a boy-king named Evan, who loses his kingdom in a violent coup. Having survived the massacre, Evan, along with a group of allies, sets out to create a new kingdom. His ultimate goal is to end all war by uniting the world’s kingdoms into one. This task won’t be easy thanks to an evil sorcerer whose mysterious motives threaten to destroy everything Evan and friends are building.Like its predecessor, Ni no Kuni II has the aesthetics of a Studio Ghibli film. This is despite having no direct involvement from the famed Japanese animation house. You won’t find any animated cutscenes like the previous title. Instead, every inch of the game is expertly rendered using in-game graphics. Since it runs on PS4 and PC, the graphics are nearly indistinguishable from traditional animation. Though I certainly miss the animated cutscenes, I can’t complain too loudly. Ni no Kuni II is still a visual feast.AdChoices广告The original Ni no Kuni had relatively straight-forward RPG mechanics. Players traveled to and from different cities, forests, caves, and other-worldly locales. They fought creatures found in the overworld or in dungeons via real-time combat encounters. For the most part, combat in Ni no Kuni II follows the flow of the previous game. Thankfully, it introduces new elements which make things far more interesting.Players can freely move during battles. This is useful for avoiding hits, and focusing attacks on specific monster parts. Depending on the situation, it is sometimes best to block assaults rather than dodge them. Players can pummel foes with melee attacks, ranged attacks, or magical attacks. Magic attacks deal the most damage, but deplete the magic gauge quickly. At times, golden orbs will drop on the field. These allow players unlimited magic attacks for a short time. Though they’re certainly aggressive, battles are also strategic; especially because of a new (and adorable) mechanic.Aiding your three-person party are tiny creatures known as higgledies. These Pikmin-like beings help by either attacking foes or giving your party much-needed buffs. Some higgledies fire cannons, while others create a healing ring to stand on. Higgledies act on their own volition, but you can also activate them by press X while standing over a group of them. You can find new higgledies by offering different items to higgledie statues found around the world. Knowing when to use their abilities during the heat of battle certainly makes encounters more strategic.One can certainly survive most of Ni no Kuni II’s encounters by leveling up and having the right gear. Thanks to the Tactic Tweaker, players can adjust specific parameters to make battles easier. More than that, they can fine tune the rewards they’ll get after vanquishing enemies.Every battle awards Battle Points. With enough of them, you can augment four categories in the Tactic Tweaker. They include: Monster Affinities, Elements and Ailments, Spoils Settings, and Arts of War. You can adjust their parameters by leveling them up with battle points. For example, you can change the settings to make you deal more damage to liquid enemies. You can also change what elements you’re more resistant to, depending on which types of creatures you’re fighting. The Tactic Tweaker may overwhelm some players who just want to go into combat and beat things up. Those who want more depth from combat will find it an indispensable tool.Ni no Kuni II introduces mechanics from genres you wouldn’t normally associate with JRPGs: Real-Time Strategy and city-building simulator. While their inclusion sounds odd, they actually make perfect sense. After all, you are trying to build a kingdom. In order to do that, you’ll have to lead your army into battle against rivals. You’ll also have to build your kingdom one structure at a time. Thankfully, both of these mechanics are streamlined in a way that makes them easy and fun to understand.During skirmishes, Evan commands up to four groups of warriors. You can rotate these soldiers to face specific unit types. As you fight, you can unleash special attacks on enemies. However, special attacks consume military might. It’s best to hold special attacks like aerial bombardment for the latter half of a skirmish. You can replenish troops lost in battle at the cost of military might. Military might can be bolstered by taking over enemy encampments. Even if you are not into RTS games, you’ll likely find skirmishes enjoyable because of their accessibility.When not fighting monsters or engaging in skirmishes, you can build your kingdom. You can make buildings like armories, item shops, training grounds, shipyards, and more. In order to buy and improve buildings, you must spend a special currency called kingsguilder. Your kingdom generates kingsguilder over time. You can speed up the process by assigning specific people to specific buildings. A soldier won’t do much good working in a fishery, for example. Researching new items not only gives you useful tools like better armor and weapons, but also speeds up the production of kingsguilder. On the surface, having to manage a kingdom sounds incredibly dull, especially if you’re not a fan of city-building games. Like skirmishes, kingdom building is actually a great deal of fun, even for those who typically dislike games with similar mechanics.One great thing about kingdom building is that it makes sidequests more meaningful. Like other games, Ni no Kuni II has its fair share of “fetch quests.” These have you running around the world looking for items to give NPCs. The big difference is most side quests reward you with a new citizen for your fledgling kingdom. It feels like you’re actually working towards something, as opposed to just doing filler work. Having a king doing silly tasks like delivering food or climbing mountains doesn’t make much sense. But, if it’s ultimately for the greater good of the kingdom, then it’s forgivable.I’ve played enough Ni no Kuni II to credibly say it’s better than the original. While it doesn’t have animated cutscenes, it more than makes up for that with deep and meaningful gameplay mechanics. Level-5 always delivers excellent JRPGs, and this is no exception. If you’re a fan of the first game or just want to play a thoroughly satisfying JRPG, you need to check this game out.Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Wings lands on PS4 and PC on March 23.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. The Most Anticipated Games of 2018 last_img read more

Messi is an example for everyone to follow – Ter Stegen

first_imgLionel Messi’s strong mentality and the way he conducts himself everyday is an example of what everybody should aspire to be, says his Barcelona teammate Marc-André ter StegenThe five-time Ballon d’Or winner has just added another record into the Barcelona history books by becoming the club’s most decorated player of all-time after collecting his 33rd trophy following their Super Cup win over Sevilla this week.It’s been a testing summer for Messi after failing to lead Argentina to World Cup glory and being on the receiving end of most of the criticism directed towards the national side due to only being able to find the back of the net once in his four games at Russia.But the newly-appointed Barcelona captain looked sharp in Sunday’s win over Sevilla and appears to have gotten over the disappointment of the World Cup.“Every player who’s on the field can learn from Leo,” said Ter Stegen, according to FC Barca.“It’s not just about football, we’re talking about a guy that’s mentally strong. Look at how many years he’s now played at a big level, always scoring, doing the work he’s doing every day and even getting better. This is what everybody could learn.”David Villa, SpainQuiz: How much do you know about David Villa? Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Time to test your knowledge about Spanish legendary forward David Villa.The German goalkeeper feels that Messi is an “idol” due to his commitment to continue to progress as a footballer, despite being regarded as one of the greatest of all-time.“He just wants to make himself and the team better,” said Ter Stegen.“And everyone should think like this.”As for Messi’s character, he added: “It’s very easy to work with him,”“He’s a very humble guy, everybody has a good opinion about him — and when it comes to football, there are no words for what he’s capable of doing on the field.”Barcelona will be back in action today at the Camp Nou against Boca Juniors.last_img read more