Off to the races Sunwing shares whats new on Every Step of

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by Thursday, April 26, 2018 Travelweek Group Share TORONTO — Woodbine Racetrack served as a fitting locale for Sunwing’s 2018 Every Step of the Way Tour, which made its Toronto stop last night as part of a coast-to-coast road trip across 21 cities.The tour operator has raced out of the gates in 2018 with new brochures and an array of special offers and products in a wide range of sun-soaked destinations. And as the name of the tour suggests, Sunwing is assuring agents that it will help ensure a seamless travel experience for their clients ‘every step of the way’.Supporting Sunwing in this endeavour are the 85+ suppliers who were in attendance at last night’s show. These included the company’s ‘Gold’ partners, including: AMResorts; Barcelo Hotels & Resorts; Be Live Resorts; Melia Cuba International; Playa Hotels & Resorts; Oasis Hotels & Resorts; Sandos Hotels & Resorts; and Seadust Cancun Family Resort. ‘Platinum’ partners RIU Hotels & Resorts and Blue Diamond Resorts were also on hand to not only lend its support but also share what’s new at their respective properties.Over the course of the tour, which spans from Stoney Creek, Ontario to Coquitlam, B.C., over 5,000 agents learned firsthand what Sunwing has in store for 2018/2019. Here are a few highlights:Sunwing Brochure 2018/2019:Features over 50 of the most popular destinations across the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America from 33 gateways coast to coastNew resorts include Royalton Antigua, Royalton Cancun Resort and Spa, Planet Hollywood Beach Resort Costa Rica, Grand Memories Punta Cana, and PlayaBachata ResortNew destinations include Antigua, Playa Mujeres and Riviera Diamante in Mexico, as well as BonaireExclusive perks for families include unlimited access to waterparks, and Kids Stay Play and Eat FRE dealsCouples perks include unlimited à la carte dining and spa discountsMore news:  Onex paying big to get WestJet and that will send airfares soaring, says CWTNew Signature Collection by Sunwing brochure:Evolution of previous Signature Vacations’ collection of resortsBrochure features six leading resort chains: RIU Hotels & Resorts; Karisma Resorts; Jewel Resorts; Excellence Group Luxury Hotels & Resorts; Hard Rock Hotels; Krystal Hotels and ResortsIncludes Jewels Resorts in Jamaica for the first timeNew hotel openings include: Riu Dunamar; Riu Palace Costa Mujeres; Riu Palace Baja California; Riu Santa Fe; Hard Rock Hotel Los Cabos; and Krystal Grand Nuevo Vallarta and Sensatori Azul Beach Resort Jamaica Off to the races! Sunwing shares what’s new on ‘Every Step of the Way’ tour Tags: Sunwing Sunwing app:Allows travellers to call home to Canada for free, plan their next vacation, book excursions, confirm flights, gain exclusive deals on local attractions and moreGroups:The 2018-2019 Groups Guide is what Lorraine Brisbois, Corporate Manager, Sunwing Travel Group, refers to as “your Bible to Groups”Brisbois also notes that “destination weddings continue to soar”, but that the company has also seen a rise in groups celebrating vow renewals and anniversariesGroups Plus Premium promotion: once a minimum of 10 adults book together, the 8th person travels freeGroup discounts are also available now on Sunwing Experiences; private tours available for groups of 12 or more and the 21st adult travels freeGroup pricing is also available for cruise packages with MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Marella Cruises where bookings of a minimum eight double cabins will have the 16th adult travel for freeSTARmillionaire promotion is returning, whereby agents can qualify for booking a group of 10 adults or more between March 28-Aug. 28, 2018More news:  Sunwing offers ultimate package deal ahead of YXU flights to SNU, PUJSunwing Experiences:For the first time ever, Sunwing will now offer agents the chance to earn STAR Agent Reward Points that convert to cash on Sunwing Experiences bookings across the Caribbean, Mexico and Central AmericaAgents will be able to book and earn commission and rewards points as these excursions can now be added as standalone purchases, regardless of which tour operator the vacation package was booked withSunwing Experiences bookings are confirmed under the category ‘Activities’ on SIREV and will soon be available on Amadeus Tours, Galileo Vacations, and Sabre VacationsClients benefit from pre-paying in Canadian dollarsNew cruises:New cruise brochure features fly & cruise packages departing form Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, Ottawa and VancouverAll packages include roundtrip flights on Sunwing Airlines with transfers include between the airport and the ship’s portCruise lines offered include MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line and Marella CruisesDomestic flights:Sunwing’s popular summer flight service resumes for its 13th consecutive seasonDaily flights are available between Toronto-Vancouver (May 15-Sept. 5, 2018), and Toronto-St. John’s (June 13-Sept. 5, 2018, Monday-Friday)Twice weekly flights to Gander on Tuesdays and Fridays (June 15-Sept. 4, 2018)Weekly Wednesday flights to Stephenville (June 13-Sept. 5, 2018)Sunwingagents.ca:Agents will soon be able to book via the platform and collect STAR points from anywhere in the world (more details to come)last_img read more

April 20 2001 Timothy Balker a pilot from Embry

first_imgApril 20, 2001Timothy Balker, a pilot from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescotthad to make an emergency landing on the north side of the Arcosanti dirt road.He was flying a Cessna 178 heading for Phoenix, when a leak in an oil line obscuredvisibility and forced him to land on our property. [Photos by Jeff Manta] View all the images after the landing:last_img

Just 11 of Turkish internet users watched Netflix

first_imgJust 11% of Turkish internet users watched Netflix in the past month compared to a 13-country average of 24% of viewers, according to Ampere Analysis.The research firm described Netflix viewing levels as “low” in the country, despite a prolific level of online video viewing on smartphones.YouTube topped the list of video services used in the past month by Turkish consumers, with 76% of Turkish internet users having watched videos on the service compared to an all countries’ average of 66%.More than half of Turkish web users had also watched video on Facebook in the past month, compared to an average across the other markets surveyed of 32%.Viewing of Twitter’s live-streaming service, Periscope, stood at 15% in Turkey compared to a 13-country average of 3%.“The prevalence of strong local streaming services from telcos, widespread usage of social video, and the strength and importance of locally-produced content, means that services such as Netflix and Amazon have a lot of work to do to gain traction among Turkish consumers,” said Ampere Analysis research director, Richard Broughton.Overall, Ampere found that 76% of respondents in Turkey view online video on their smartphones compared to an all country average of 58%. Some 43% of Turks were found to view online video daily on their smartphones, significantly ahead of the global average of just 25%.However, Turkish nationals were also found to be much less likely than average to have games consoles, Blu-ray players and OTT streaming devices such as Apple TV or Chromecast.“Turkish internet users enjoy accessing online video content and are using a variety of devices to enable them to do so throughout the day,” said Broughton.“With 97% of Turkish internet users living in a household in which someone owns a smartphone, smartphones are the clear ‘go to’ device for accessing online video content. But we also see an unusually high level of viewing via the computer – largely reflecting lower uptake of other connected device types such as streaming boxes or sticks.”The research was based on a survey of 26,000 respondents in 13 countries around the world: the US, UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Brazil, Poland, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.Earlier this month, Ampere reported that Saudi Arabian internet users watched more TV and video online than people in any other country, with 87% of Saudi viewers watching online video content on their smartphones.last_img read more

RT has expanded its partnership with Yahlive by in

first_imgRT has expanded its partnership with Yahlive by introducing RT France HD to French speakers in the Middle East and North Africa region via Yahlive’s MENA beam. The state-funded Russian news network’s RT France HD channel will be added to Yahlive’s existing bouquet of channels for the next three years and will have a reach of more 10 million households across Algeria, Tunisia, and Morocco.“This expanded distribution positions us even more as the reference information channel that offers the French-speaking audiences in the region with a wide range of stories and different perspectives on the news ” said Xenia Fedorova, president of RT France.RT is a long-term partner of Yahlive and the new deal comes after the firms renewed their agreement last year to continue broadcasting RT International HD and RT Arabic HD. RT claims a weekly audience of 11 million people across 15 countries in MENA.Abu Dhabi-based Yahsat is a joint venture between satellite operator SES and the UAE satellite company Yahsat. Commenting on the deal, Yahlive’s chief operating officer, Ammar Baranbo, said: “This partnership is a reflection of the technical excellence provided by Yahsat’s Al Yah1 satellite which allows us to deliver high-quality content based on our customer’s transmission needs, with the best possible signal quality.”RT’s head of distribution, Ivan Lyssenko, added: “Since 2012, we have enjoyed incredible success with Yahlive as our partner and are continuously leveraging their growing viewership across the MENA coverage. This agreement is a step forward in consolidating our market presence and we are confident that Yahlive’s strong and growing footprint in the MENA region will allow us to engage with newer audiences.”last_img read more

Oil 8509 9239 9574

first_imgOil85.0992.3995.74 Rock & Stock StatsLast Silver Stocks (SIL)24.1224.4524.15 One Month Ago TSX Venture1,300.921,327.811,621.00 Gold Junior Stocks (GDXJ)23.9423.8831.44 TSX (Toronto Stock Exchange)12,196.8012,273.5712,156.22 Copper3.473.733.44center_img Silver32.1633.8734.58 One Year Ago Dear Reader,Well, just as Doug Casey predicted, Obama won the US election. I wouldn’t make too much of Doug’s successful prediction, as he’s the first to say that these two Obama victories are the only presidential elections he’s predicted correctly.More to the point is the joke going around about two guys watching the election results in a bar, when Obama’s victory is announced. One guy groans: “Four more years!” The other guy cries: “Four more beers!”What’s interesting about this to us is that it reflects investor sentiment. The markets reacted strongly to the election, clearly showing that most investors think another Obama term is bad for the economy. It was striking to see gold and the Dow move so sharply in opposite directions.RealityThe reality – according to Doug and the Casey Brain Trust – is that neither likely winner could stop the train wreck ahead for the economy, so the outcome really didn’t matter.Sure, Obama wasted no time in talking about raising taxes on the rich, which surely only added to investors’ certainty that the president will make things worse. But Romney could have pushed the US into a war much faster, and that would need to be paid for – not that drone-happy Obama is a dove himself.Again, the reality is that even if the differences in rhetoric between Obama and Romney were real, they simply don’t matter compared to the world of hurt pending after decades of mismanagement of the US economy and the post-2008 panic. The stampede has taken the US in completely the wrong direction (dousing the debt bonfire with more easy money), as it has in Europe and Asia as well.All I can really add to this is to remind people of Doug’s mantra for this cycle: buy gold for prudence, gold stocks and other “crisis investing” stocks to speculate for profit, and internationalize yourself to diversify your political risk.PerceptionThat said, perception does move investors, and prices are fixed at the margins, especially during a market mania, which, by definition, divorces prices from underlying value.In this context, the post-electoral perception of increased economic risk is obviously bullish for the financial safe haven of gold. This on top of the probable seasonal increase in gold prices this winter is highly bullish for precious metals stocks in the months ahead – miners and explorers alike. And if we see any black swans alighting during this time, fear and greed could both drive the masses into the only investing sector that offers security and profits.That would be powerful indeed, and we’d see a market mania for the record books.But even if no major black swans upset the house of cards our politicians are desperately trying to hold together amidst a hurricane with an unlimited flow of money-glue… well, there’s still the unlimited flow of money-glue and its necessary consequences, which are bullish for all things real, especially precious metals.There’s also the looming US “fiscal cliff” and all the media circus around the political grandstanding we’ll see in the weeks and months ahead. Indeed, it’s already started. Among the things at stake are sunsetting tax cuts, the lapse of which would hit many middle-class families hard, not just “the rich.” The rhetorical slugfest ahead and its impact on investor perceptions promises to keep markets fear-dominated and volatile. And that too is very bullish for precious metals in the near term.Investors already active in the precious-metals sector seem to realize much of this already. Share prices for good companies that have not run out of cash are up, money is becoming available for project financing, and mergers and acquisitions activity has started heating up again.I’m happy to say that our readers who acted on our recommendations to buy during last summer’s Shopping Season are profiting already, and poised to profit more in the months ahead.What To DoGiven these circumstances, the odds dictate the following general strategies:If you’re long, do not let greed get the better of you: take profits when you have them. You can redeploy them into more stocks if you’re extremely bullish and don’t mind losing your gains, should the market turn in an unexpected way. Or take them out of the game – use them to buy some real asset you want or need. Or whatever else suits your fancy. Just don’t get cocky. Yes, we expect things to continue going up for some time, but no one can say what will be with certainty.If you’re not long, it is not too late. There are great deals out there that have still not rebounded much from last summer’s lows, as well as others that have, but which have material, value-adding developments coming soon. Plus, a rising tide lifts all ships –at least the ones without holes in their hulls.In short, if you’re an investor who’s unhappy with the way the US election turned out, just remember what to do when life hands you lemons – make lemonade. We don’t call the shots, but we can sure do our best to profit and provide for our loved ones based on the trends we see developing.No whining.That’s the investor’s equivalent of being a deer caught in headlights. The deer are not actually caught – if they’d just keep going, they’d almost never get hit at all.The cure for post-election blues is action. If you agree with my analysis above, you know what to do. If you don’t agree, that’s fine – take action based on whatever you see the trends to be. Either course has risks and may or may not work out, but sitting in the headlights is the worst thing you can do.Sincerely,Louis JamesSenior Metals Investment StrategistCasey Research Gold Producers (GDX)50.6752.0860.69 Gold1,738.251,774.001,784.00 Gold and Silver HEADLINESShift in Miners’ Priorities: More Attention to Profit Growth (Ernst & Young)The recently released Mergers, Acquisitions and Capital Raising in the Mining and Metals Sector report by Ernst & Young shows that the overall value of deals completed in the first nine months of 2012 fell 43% year-to-year. The fall is attributed to “turbulent and changing environment of cost inflation, slowing economic growth, heightened geopolitical risk and volatile prices.” The report reveals that these hard conditions have led to a shift in mining companies’ priorities from “growth for growth’s sake” to growth in profits, which includes cost control, credit quality, and focus on shareholder returns.The report says this now means that deals will be more focused on acquisitions that “bring more than market share – such as improved productivity, lower average costs, or improved asset utilization.”This actually sounds quite healthy, in our view. It’s about time more companies focused on good management, and did not just assume higher commodity prices would cover sloppy or reckless policies.Chinese Jewelers Go West for Growth (Reuters)Chinese jewelers are shifting their focus to smaller, inland cities, urged by growing consumer demand for gold. Industry insider Leon Zhao, a consulting director from research firm Frost & Sullivan’s China operations, says “third- and fourth-tier cities are going to be the main engine of China’s jeweler market.” His company believes such cities will account for more than 40% of the country’s total jewelry market by 2015, up from 34% in 2010 and 29% in 2006.Some regional jewelers have already noticed that “in the past two to three years retail outlets in tier three and tier four and in central and western parts of the country have performed better than those in coastal cities.”This trend suggests that China’s gold market is far from being saturated. There are numerous smaller cities that have big potential to consume more gold in the near future, as wealth and spending power increases in these less-developed areas.last_img read more

New law cracks down on right to use cash

first_img New law cracks down on right to use cash The U.S. government is trying to restrict your access to cash. But not for the reason you think… According to leaked evidence it’s much, much worse. Insuring themselves against “black swan” events, but not investing with the hope of profiting from them, Fixed Income – Historically, bonds make up this asset class. At one time, bonds (AAA municipal bonds) represented as much as 40% of my net investible worth. My strategy was always to hold until maturity and buy them in “ladders,” replacing them when they matured. But I haven’t bought them since the rates dropped below 4.5% and have sold some I didn’t like much. Today, they represent about 5% of my net investible wealth. I also own an annuity and a life insurance product. These are not the typical insurance products. Most annuities and life insurance products are very expensive and very complicated. You have to be very careful with those. Editor’s Note: Last Tuesday, Mark appeared on a special live webinar to discuss his experience with using options (to date, he’s generated over $282,000 in instant cash payouts over the last three years). To watch the replay of this event—and learn in detail how this technique works—click here. Rental Real Estate – Next to business ventures, income-producing property investments have been the largest contributor to my wealth-building success. I invest for the income and see appreciation as a bonus. As with insurance products, real estate investing can be tricky for the inexperienced investor. Most mainstream real estate advice is bad. But if you do it properly—focusing on income—this asset class will do huge work for your portfolio. Editor’s Note: Can you get rich investing in stocks and bonds? Palm Beach Research Group founder Mark Ford has more insight into this question than most. Although he’s not an investment analyst, he’s worked in the financial publishing industry for over 30 years. He’s also built dozens of businesses from scratch…creating millions of dollars of wealth in the process. In short, Mark knows more about building wealth than just about anyone. In today’s Weekend Edition, Mark explains nine steps he is personally taking right now to grow and keep his money. By Mark Morgan Ford I am not an investment professional. I have never made any money managing other people’s money. I went from rags to riches the old-fashioned way: working hard and then investing my income as carefully as I could. Because I’d done well on my own, I never considered seeking financial advice. Then a funny thing happened. I woke up one day with the thought that I should have a “professional” manage some of my money. I interviewed two firms. One was a boutique business based in New York City that a friend recommended. The other was a private banking facility for one of the world’s largest brokerages. The boutique firm was happy to take $100,000 of my money to get started. The other company wanted a minimum of $10 million. They both had fancy offices and pretty marketing brochures. But such frills scare me. They make me think, “Gee, these guys must be charging their customers a lot to afford all this stuff.” My trepidations notwithstanding, I worked with both of them for about six months. I answered their questions about my tolerance for risk (little to none). I listened to their presentations. And then I did something that I bet few of their clients ever do. I started asking them questions. And I kept pushing them to explain why I should believe that they could help me become wealthier. What I got instead was clever circumlocution. A financially sophisticated version of what you’d expect from your teenage son if you pestered him about why he didn’t come home until four in the morning. Those discussions convinced me that these guys could not manage my money better than I had been managing it. To be fair, they certainly knew more about investment products than I did. But they didn’t know more about how to become wealthy. These guys were smart. They had graduate degrees from great schools. They spoke eloquently. They seemed so…so…inside the game. I wanted them to be better than me. I really did. But they really didn’t seem to care whether their services would make me richer or poorer. The contracts they wanted me to sign were going to put money in their pockets regardless. That didn’t feel right. In the end, I told both of my elite financial planners to take a hike. And I went back to managing my money myself. Seeing Only 20% of the Big Picture The investment advisory industry is a huge multibillion-dollar business based on hard work, clever thinking, and sophisticated algorithms. But also on one teensy-weensy lie. The lie is that you can grow wealthy investing in stocks and bonds. It’s not a big, black lie. But the unfortunate truth is the financial establishment rarely looks beyond stocks and bonds. And if you think about it, why would it want to? It makes its money by ushering you from one “hot” stock or “amazing” fund to the next. Wall Street wants you to think the stock (and sometimes the bond) markets are the only places you can make money. And because they know that you have heard that “diversification of assets” is good, they give you the illusion of diversification by having your stock portfolio invested in businesses that are “diversified” into manufacturing, retail, global trade, natural resources, etc. This is, as I said, an illusion. At the end of the day, it’s all invested in stocks or stock derivatives. The result? More risk and less potential wealth gain for you. So start by deconstructing the little lie. Building wealth involves much more than just investing in stocks and bonds. Most rich people get that way by consistently doing the following nine things: Giving top priority to increasing their net investible income, not maximizing returns, Options – Although my cardinal rule is not to invest in something I don’t understand, my colleague, Tom Dyson, found a way to trade options that I both understand and also believe in. Like real estate and insurance products, most options strategies are speculations. I’d advise against them. But the way Tom taught me to do it, selling puts on legacy-type stocks, has worked very well for me. In fact, over eight years of testing, it’s proven successful 96.2% of the time. If you’re interested in a free, three-part training series he’s currently running on this type of options trading, I recommend clicking here. Spending less as a percentage of net income as it grows so they can save more, Investing in safe real estate—i.e., income-producing properties, Recommended Links Jim Rickards Issues “Critical Warning #3″… Jim Rickards just issued a new critical market update. You need to check this out… Jim’s issued this kind of update only twice before in recent history… Both times were about massive changes in the markets. And this change is even BIGGER… See this very short video by clicking here. Investing in stocks and bonds with discipline—i.e., without expecting to get returns that are much higher than market averages, And keeping a substantial store of cash to be used when “cash becomes king.” As you can see, investing in stocks and bonds is only one of nine strategies you must follow to become rich, but that was the only one that the two money management firms I tried cared about. Direct Investments in Entrepreneurial Businesses – This is, by far, the investment class that has given me the best results. If you do this right, you can expect terrific, steady income and the potential for enormous growth. The trick here is to invest only in companies you understand and have some control over. Owning tangible, portable, and non-reportable assets as a reserve that can be tapped into at opportune moments, Cash – I call this a “Cash Opportunity Fund.” You keep a store of money you add to every year. That way, when the crash comes, you can use this fund to swoop in and buy a bunch of great assets at bargain prices. Understanding debt and using it occasionally and strategically to build wealth, — Chaos Hedges – This asset class is not, for me, an investment. It is, as the name implies, protection from times of turbulence—a market crash, bankruptcy, lawsuits, etc. In this class I include gold, silver, and platinum coins (bullion and one or two “rare” types). I bought all I needed when gold was trading at about $400 an ounce. It’s gone up and down since then but at today’s prices it looks good again. Collectibles – This is a category of investing that you will probably not be interested in, unless you want to enrich not just your net worth but your experience of living each and every day for the rest of your life. My preferred collectible is fine art and first-edition books, but you can invest in anything from baseball cards to vintage cars to surfboards. How to Ensure Financial Growth and Security So if you can’t reasonably expect to get rich with just stocks and bonds, what can you do? You can model your investing behavior on the behaviors that have been proven, time and time again, to actually work. I’m talking about asset allocation. Asset allocation is the process by which you spread your wealth across different sorts of investments. You might think that something so dull as asset allocation could not possibly be that important in acquiring wealth, but numerous studies have shown that it may be the most important factor. (These studies can be found here.) Because of an early financial disaster, I became an emotionally compulsive diversifier of practically every dollar I could save, putting some of it in bonds, some in stocks, some in cash, some in real estate, and so on. Over the years I have made hundreds of individual financial decisions—buy this, sell that. Some of them were quite good, a few of them were quite bad, and most of them were in-between. And yet, overall, my net worth had increased considerably and consistently, without any down years, for more than 30 years. I could see very clearly that this was not due to the particular buy/sell decisions that accounted for this good fortune. It was the general decisions about asset allocation that paid off. Since I discovered this, I have been telling my readers about my own asset allocation decisions every year. Not because I think my portfolio is the best possible exemplum of diversification, but just to illustrate my belief that one needs to go well beyond some combination of stocks, bonds, and cash to win at the wealth-building game. My yearly report is reasonably detailed, but the following will give you a bird’s eye view of what I do. Stocks – I have several stock portfolios: one that you might call “legacy” stocks, one that I call “performance stocks,” and a third group that includes what would conventionally be called “growth” and “speculative” stocks. The lion’s share (maybe 80% to 90%) of my stock money is in the legacy stocks: a handful of big, dividend-giving companies that I’m happy to keep on a “forever” basis. A smaller percentage is in dividend-giving companies with growth potential. And a tiny percentage are speculations—stocks I’m quite sure I’ll lose all my money on but I want to own them just for fun. – Investing directly in private enterprises and other “outside Wall Street” opportunities,last_img read more

In what would likely become the most restrictive a

first_imgIn what would likely become the most restrictive abortion ban in the country, the Alabama House Tuesday passed a bill that would make it a crime for doctors to perform abortions at any stage of a pregnancy, unless a woman’s life is threatened. The legislation is part of a broader anti-abortion strategy to prompt the U.S. Supreme Court to reconsider the right to abortion. Republican state Rep. Terri Collins of Decatur, Ala. defended her “Human Life Protection Act” during, at times, contentious debate on the House floor. “This bill is focused on that baby that’s in the womb that is a person,” Collins said. “That baby, I believe, would choose life.” Democratic lawmakers walked out in protest before the final 74 to 3 vote. During debate, they questioned the motive for an abortion ban in a state that’s refused to expand Medicaid. “I do support life, but there are some people that just support birth they don’t support life,” said Democratic Rep. Merika Coleman of Birmingham, Ala. “Because after a child is born there are some things that need to happen. We need to make sure that child has adequate health care,” Coleman said.Other states, including neighboring Georgia and Mississippi, have passed laws that prohibit abortion once a fetal heartbeat can be detected. But Alabama’s ban would apply even earlier.”When a woman is pregnant, an abortion is no longer legal,” says Collins, explaining the bill. The bill criminalizes abortion, meaning doctors would face felony jail time up to 99 years if convicted. The only exceptions are for a serious health risk to the pregnant woman, or a lethal anomaly of the fetus. There are no exceptions for cases of rape or incest. A woman would not be held criminally liable for having an abortion.Collins says the bill follows a constitutional amendment approved by Alabama voters last year that recognizes the “rights of unborn children.” It defies the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision that protects a woman’s right to abortion.”This bill is simply about Roe v. Wade,” says Collins. “The decision that was made back in 1973 would not be the same decision that was decided upon today if you relooked at the issue.” Her bill cites abolition, the civil rights movement and women’s suffrage as justification for establishing the human rights of a fetus. Alabama is one of more than two dozen states seeking to restrict abortion rights this year, testing federal legal precedent that prevents states from banning abortion before the point at which a fetus could survive outside the womb. Alabama Pro-Life Coalition President Eric Johnston says there’s a reason there’s so much activity now.”The dynamic has changed,” Johnston says. “The judges have changed, a lot of changes over that time, and so I think we’re at the point where we need to take a bigger and a bolder step.” The bold move to outlaw nearly all abortions is drawing protests from abortion rights advocates. A coalition called Unite for Reproductive and Gender Equity demonstrated outside the Alabama statehouse last month. “This bill is an awful piece of grandstanding,” said Amanda Reyes of Tuscaloosa, Ala. She’s president of the Yellowhammer Fund, a group that helps women pay for abortions. “If you make abortion illegal somewhere that doesn’t mean that abortion goes away,” says Reyes. “It just becomes more difficult and more dangerous to access.” The bill is expected to win final passage in the Republican majority Alabama Senate. The ACLU of Alabama says it will sue if the abortion ban becomes law. Executive Director Randall Marshall says the bill is unconstitutional. “There is simply nothing that Alabama can do to interfere with the right of access to abortion,” Marshall says. “That is a federal right and the Federal Constitution clearly trumps all state law.” With two Trump appointees now on the U.S. Supreme Court, anti-abortion forces are optimistic that judicial interpretation could be reversed. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more

A disabled writeractivist is hoping that his new

first_imgA disabled writer-activist is hoping that his new novel will alert its readers to the “scary” undercurrent of disablism that has been repeatedly stirred up by the government’s “benefit scrounger” rhetoric.The Norwich Wheelchair Murders is Bill Albert’s eighth novel, and its combination of hard-bitten cynicism, sharp dialogue, ruthless gangsters and fast-moving plot has led to it being dubbed the first of a new genre: Crip Noir.It follows the journey taken by Bobby “The Fixer” Fishbaum, who sees “handicapped people” as “big time losers. Disgusting. Unpredictable. Embarrassing. Helpless.”Fishbaum has to flee his penthouse in Santa Monica to escape some vengeful Russian gangsters, and ends up hiding out with his five-year-old daughter in a council flat in Norwich, while also coming to terms with a diagnosis that has left him using a wheelchair.It is a similar journey to the one Albert took himself. Born in New York, the former university academic grew up and studied in California, but has lived in England since 1964, and in Norwich for more than 45 years.He did not discover that he was a disabled person until he finally received a medical diagnosis at the age of 31, but his journey to feeling comfortable with that identity was a gradual one that took at least another 10 years.That journey was aided by meeting other “crips” at a Norwich access group, people whose demonstration of “lives well lived” taught him, he said, about himself and “how to be”.Before he met them, like his character Bobby Fishbaum, he says in a short memoir, he “didn’t know any disabled people. I didn’t want to either. They frightened me, repelled me with their crippled twitching, garbled speech, their unnatural ways.”Taking part in the last of the anti-Telethon demos outside the studios of London Weekend Television in 1992 – where his teachers were “five hundred joyfully angry crips, rolling and staggering and stumbling and drooling and twitching and shouting and singing and waving banners” – was a swift introduction to the disabled people’s movement, the social model and direct action.Soon he was importing some of that back to Norwich, and helping to set up Norfolk Coalition of Disabled People – these days known as Equal Lives – for which he was the founding chair.One of the disabled “role models” who taught him “how to be” was an activist called Brendan Carroll, on whom he loosely based the character of Brendan in his novel.The novel’s dedication says it was Carroll, who died several years ago, and six other disabled friends who taught him “the joys of being a bolshy crip”.Albert says: “I miss him every day. He was a very unlikely, charismatic figure. He really lived a life. I have made him into my crip superhero.”His novel’s other disabled characters are “amalgams” of other disabled people he knows, albeit “a bit more extreme” than they are in real life.The Norwich Wheelchair Murders was, he says, an attempt “to explain disability to the world which was different to how anybody else had done it”.One of its central themes is the extent to which disabled people are subjected to hate crime, something Albert started to become aware of while editing the monthly newsletter for the international disability rights charity Disability Awareness in Action, and from hearing about the experiences of other disabled people in Norwich, particularly those with learning difficulties.As other disabled activists and artists – most notably Liz Crow – have done in recent years, he draws a parallel between the attitudes to disabled people in Nazi Germany that found its most brutal expression in the Aktion T4 programme, which saw the targeted killing of as many as 200,000 disabled people, and similar attitudes that have surfaced in recent years in the UK.As one character in his novel says: “He said most disabled people were little more than a burden on themselves and the rest of us too. Scroungers, he called them, useless scroungers. Already half dead anyway.”It was an attitude Albert noticed as a member of the Human Genetics Commission – between 1999 and 2005 – when he came across views that can only be described as “eugenics” but which had been “crafted in a medical way”, and suggested that “disabled people were not something you would want to choose”.He said: “It’s gone much further now. It’s really scary stuff. That’s always in the back of my mind, because I was right there when it was all being trotted out and debated.”Albert insists that the hateful attitudes espoused by some of the characters in his novel are not that different to the rhetoric spouted by some politicians.He said: “Look at the all the stuff that’s coming out from the government.“They are kind of painting us as very much like that, but not in that kind of stark language, but if you read the sub-titles that’s what you think.”It is reflected, he says, in the everyday experiences of disabled people. “People I know have had nasty comments made to them about being a scrounger.”He adds: “Look what the government has done in the last five years. All the stuff we have fought for, I have been fighting for for 25 years – lots of other people for even longer – has been rolled back. We are going backwards at the moment.”He is still treasurer of Equal Lives, and has been active in the fight against public sector cuts that is a major feature of the organisation’s work – he says many disabled people in Norfolk are being “devastated” by the cuts – although these days in more of a backroom support role.Indeed, just hours before Disability News Service’s interview with Albert, disabled activists and others staged a demonstration outside the headquarters of Norfolk County Council, in protest at further planned cuts to public services.The Norwich Wheelchair Murders does not address government cuts and rhetoric head-on, and instead tries a more subtle approach, hinting at the backdrop of cuts that exists behind the lives of its disabled characters.But Albert says he “absolutely” wants the book to deliver a wake-up call on disability hate crime.“Those attitudes are out there,” he says. “This government has done nothing but stoke them, basically, while saying, ‘We are not against disabled people, we want to help them, they are the most needy,’ which doesn’t mean anything.”last_img read more

A note from the editor Please consider making a v

first_imgA note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS… Disabled activists and their allies have forced a council into a significant climbdown over its “discriminatory” plans for a memorial to victims of the Peterloo massacre.Manchester City Council (MCC) said this week that it had asked artist Jeremy Deller to examine how the memorial he designed can now be made “fully accessible”.The council-funded memorial was set to be completely inaccessible to many disabled people (pictured), even though Deller wanted it to be used as a platform for speakers and demonstrators, mirroring those who spoke during the protest in 1819 that led to the massacre*.The council had previously told Disability News Service (DNS) that it was unlikely that any “fundamental changes” would be made to the memorial, which is due to be unveiled to the public on 16 August, the 200th anniversary of the massacre.But there has now been an apparent climbdown following weeks of protests led by disabled activists.The council’s announcement follows a meeting between city councillors Luthfur Rahman (executive member for skills, culture and leisure) and Tracey Rawlins (lead member for disabled people), and representatives of disabled people’s groups.Mark Todd, a disabled access expert who started a Facebook page to protest at the design of the memorial – and has called it “a monument to discrimination” – said he was “really pleased” at the council’s apparent change of approach.He said that the “breadth and determination” of the campaign and the willingness to work with the council appeared to have paid off.And he said the campaign had built an “amazing coalition” that included disabled people, artists, celebrities, and citizens of Manchester “who all want a Peterloo Memorial that is accessible to everyone”.Among those who have supported the campaign are the musician and activist Billy Bragg, who said: “Surely something that symbolises the struggle for universal rights should be accessible to all.”Disabled comedian and activist Francesca Martinez said it was “extraordinary” that the memorial design had not been inclusive, while there has also been criticism from disabled actor-campaigners Cherylee Houston and Ali Briggs.Briggs said: “We all want a memorial, yes that’s true. We just don’t want one like this, that we can’t be proud of.”Todd said this week that he was “cautiously optimistic” following the council’s statement, but until there was a “fitting and accessible Peterloo Memorial”, the campaign and a weekly vigil near the site would continue.He said: “We are not ready to put away our placards just yet.”Greater Manchester Coalition of Disabled People (GMCDP), which has played a key role in the protests, also welcomed the announcement.But it warned that the council had not yet met its three demands – to stop work on the memorial while it was still low enough to include a ramp; to ensure the memorial was accessible; and to make sure there was no repeat of the council’s failure with future projects – and pointed out that building work on the inaccessible memorial was now nearly finished.Campaigners will meet next week with the council, Deller and the architect working on the project, and will then decide whether to review their demands.A GMCDP spokesperson said: “MCC’s decision to build the memorial to its full height and then explore access solutions afterwards, limits considerably what can be done to make it a platform everyone can use.“We do not know what MCC have in mind, if anything, and we acknowledge that a perfect solution may not be arrived at immediately. “What is needed most at this stage is the commitment to find a genuine accessible long-term solution, properly considered, fully consulted on and backed up with some teeth and a budget.”The council has faced weeks of anger from disabled people and allies that a memorial designed to remember those who marched for liberty and equality in the 19th century should apparently have been “designed and built with discrimination and inequality at its heart”.Now the council has said that it regrets that the design of the memorial “did not give enough consideration to access issues”.Cllr Rahman said: “Manchester City Council has a long and proud record around access issues, something which disabled access campaigners have acknowledged. “However, we recognise that the interpretation of the brief for the Peterloo Memorial, with an imaginative design involving a more interactive element than originally envisaged for a public artwork, did not give enough consideration to access issues and we regret this.“We recently met with representatives of disabled people’s groups to further discuss this issue and we have asked the artist and architect to look at how the monument in its current form can be modified to make it fully accessible.“We will share more details about where we are up to and the proposed way forward as soon as we are in a position to do so.“We are listening and doing all we can to resolve this satisfactorily.”Deller told DNS last night (Wednesday) that he was optimistic that a solution could be found to make the memorial accessible.*On 16 August 1819, paramilitary and military forces attacked more than 60,000 peaceful, pro-democracy and anti-poverty protesters in Manchester, which led to 18 deaths and an estimated 700 serious injuries, in what became known as the Peterloo Massacrelast_img read more

InFlight WiFi

first_img This story appears in the November 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe » In-Flight Wi-Fi Add to Queue Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. –shares Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Mile-high productivity gets a boost from in-air Wi-Fi. Next Article Amanda C. Kooser Magazine Contributor Register Now » While we still can’t use our cell phones on airplanes, onboard internet is getting a lot of attention.In-air Wi-Fi is pretty much ready for prime time. It doesn’t have the interference or social issues that crop up around cell phone usage. International travelers will get the first crack at it. There have been Wi-Fi announcements and implementations from airlines like Singapore Airlines and German carrier Lufthansa. Connexion by Boeing is a leading provider in this area. Pricing can start as low as $8 for a 30-minute block. Check for availability on your next overseas flight.Look for in-flight Wi-Fi on U.S. airlines sometime next year. Boingo customers will benefit from a roaming agreement that allows access on Connexion-enabled flights. United Airlines and Verizon Airfone have tested their own in-flight Wi-Fi, due to go online next year as well. 1 min read Technology November 1, 2005last_img read more

Former Peanut Company CEO Sentenced to 28 Years for Deadly Salmonella Outbreak

first_img September 22, 2015 Image credit: Reuters | Matthew Bigg Reuters This story originally appeared on Reuters Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. The building of the now-closed Peanut Corporation of America plant is pictured in Blakely, Georgia. 3 min read The former owner of a peanut company in Georgia was sentenced to 28 years in prison on Monday for his role in a salmonella outbreak that killed nine people and sickened hundreds, a rare instance of jail time in a food contamination case.Stewart Parnell, 61, who once oversaw Peanut Corporation of America, and his brother, Michael Parnell, 56, who was a food broker on the company’s behalf, were convicted on federal conspiracy charges in September 2014 for knowingly shipping salmonella-tainted peanuts to customers.Contamination at the company’s plant in Blakely, Georgia, led to one of the largest food recalls in U.S. history and forced the company into liquidation.U.S. District Judge Louis Sands gave Michael Parnell 20 years in prison. Mary Wilkerson, 41, a former quality control manager at the plant who was found guilty of obstruction, was sentenced to five years in prison.Stewart Parnell faced life in prison and his brother faced about 24 years.The Justice Department described Stewart Parnell’s sentence as the largest in a food safety case.Before the judge issued the sentences, Stewart Parnell said; “This has been a seven-year nightmare for me and my family. I’m truly, truly sorry for what’s happened.”At Monday’s hearing in Albany, Georgia, relatives of several victims described their suffering and asked for stiff sentences.Jeff Almer, of Brainerd, Minnesota, said his mother, Shirley Almer, died after eating tainted peanut butter in 2009, one of 714 people to fall ill.”My mother died a painful death from salmonella, and the look of horror on her face as she died shall always haunt me,” he said.”I just hope they ship you all to jail,” Almer said.Stewart Parnell’s attorney, Tom Bondurant Jr. vowed to appeal, contending that the sentences were too harsh. Under federal rules, the defendants will have to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences before being eligible for parole.”Given the ages of these two men, this is a life sentence,” Bondurant said.During the trial, prosecutors said the brothers covered up the presence of salmonella in their company’s peanut products for years, even creating fake certificates showing they were uncontaminated despite laboratory results showing otherwise.The Parnells have said they never knowingly endangered customers.”No one thought that the products were unsafe or could harm someone,” said Stewart Parnell’s daughter, Grey Parnell. “Dad brought them home to us. We all ate it.”(Additional reporting by David Beasley in Atlanta and Letitia Stein in Tampa, Florida; Editing by David Adams, Lisa Shumaker and Sharon Bernstein) Legal –shares Add to Queue Next Article Former Peanut Company CEO Sentenced to 28 Years for Deadly Salmonella Outbreak Register Now »last_img read more

AI could help spot Alzheimers early finds study

first_img Source:https://pubs.rsna.org/doi/10.1148/radiol.2018180958#tbl2 By Dr. Ananya Mandal, MDNov 8 2018Artificial intelligence (AI) may soon be used to detect Alzheimer’s disease early in the course of disease say researchers. The results of the study were published in the latest issue of the journal Radiology.The researchers from University of California at San Francisco, conducted a small but significant study where they used a self-learning computer programme to look at the brain scans of participants. The computer programme was designed to detect the early signs of neurodegenerative disease – Alzheimer’s. These features were usually too minute and subtle for human eyes to spot them. Results revealed that the programme could detect signs of Alzheimer’s disease in 40 patients six years (average 75.8 months) before symptoms of the disease manifested themselves and the disease could be formally diagnosed.The team wrote, “There is wide recognition that deep learning may assist in addressing the increasing complexity and volume of imaging data, as well as the varying expertise of trained imaging physicians. The application of machine learning technology to complex patterns of findings, such as those found at functional PET imaging of the brain, is only beginning to be explored. We hypothesized that the deep learning algorithm could detect features or patterns that are not evident on standard clinical review of images and thereby improve the final diagnostic classification of individuals.”The “deep learning algorithm” developed by the team was trained by showing it 2109 F-FDG PET (or fluorine 18 (18F) fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography) scans from 1,002 patients. These PET scans can detect metabolic activities from all parts of the brain by showing uptake of a radioactive glucose compound that is administered by injection into the blood stream. The programme could detect changes in metabolic patterns of usage in the brain that could signal future development of Alzheimer’s. The algorithm trained itself by looking at these changes in all the scans that it was shown. Once it knew what it was looking for, it could detect all the early cases in the pilot study, the researchers explained. The pilot study was using 40 PET scans from 40 patients whose scans the algorithm had not encountered before. It predicted the early signs of the disease with 100 percent accuracy the team wrote. Dr Jae Ho Sohn, one of the co-authors of the study said, “We were very pleased with the algorithm’s performance. It was able to predict every single case that advanced to Alzheimer’s disease.”Related StoriesArtificial intelligence can help accurately predict acute kidney injury in burn patientsMercy Medical Center adds O-arm imaging system to improve spinal surgery resultsStudy provides new insight into longitudinal decline in brain network integrity associated with agingThe team explained that with such early detection, interventions and treatment could also begin early. This could not only slow down the progress of the disease but also halt the progression of degeneration.Dr Carol Routledge, from the charity Alzheimer’s Research UK explained that these neurodegenerative disorders usually begin up to two decades before the symptoms appear. This algorithm can help detect the disease early so treatment can start earlier before much damage is done she added. “This study highlights the potential of machine learning to assist with the early detection of diseases like Alzheimer’s, but the findings will need to be confirmed in much larger groups of people before we can properly assess the power of this approach,” she said.last_img read more

Advanced spectroscopic techniques used to prepare characterize major degradation products of pralatrexate

first_img Source:https://benthamscience.com/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Dec 13 2018The major degradation products of pralatrexate drug product formed under hydrolytic and light stress conditions were identified, synthesized, and characterized using advanced spectroscopic techniques such as NMR, HR-MS, and IR. For quantification of related compounds including the degradation products of pralatrexate drug product a stability indicating HPLC method was developed and validated as per ICH guidelines.Pralatrexate is an antineoplastic folate analog which is chemically named as (2S)-2-[[4-[(1RS)-1-[(2,4-diaminopteridin-6-yl)methyl]but-3-ynyl]benzoyl]amino] pentanedioic acid. Pralatrexate injection is a preservative-free, sterile, isotonic, non-pyrogenic clear yellow aqueous solution for intravenous administration. Chemical stability is an important product quality attribute of the pharmaceutical molecule that affects the safety, quality and efficacy of drug product. The information on the stability of a molecule helps in developing proper formulation, container-closure as well as storage conditions and shelf life. To understand the stability of molecule it is necessary to study degradation profile of a product. The samples generated from forced degradation can help in establishing stability indicating method and also degradation path way of product which helps to predict degradation products arise during accelerated and long term storage conditions. Forced degradation study for drug product is also very important for identifying as well as to know the nature of the degradation products (hydrolytic/oxidation/ heat) and to elucidate the structure of the drug products generated during stress study. To understand the degradation pathway of products an efficient analytical method is required which should be able to detect the impurities generated from stress conditions. High Performance Liquid Chromatography and HR-MS are the best tools to study the impurity profile of degradation products. It is also important to develop a sensitive HPLC method which should be able to detect and quantify the impurities at lower level. To know the detection level of degradation products in a HPLC method, pure forms of impurities are required. Four major degradation products pralatrexate finished product were synthesized and characterized by NMR, FTIR and HR-MS spectroscopic techniques. A sensitive and stability indicating HPLC method was developed and validated for quantification of pralatrexate and degradation products as well related compounds of pralatrexate in pralatrexate liquid formulation.last_img read more

Targeting aging process itself can lead to better and more effective interventions

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Feb 11 2019Medical care for older adults has long focused on preventing and treating chronic diseases and the conditions that come with them. But now, geriatrics researchers and clinicians hope a new understanding–one honed at a prestigious conference hosted by the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) and the National Institute on Aging (NIA), with support from The John A. Hartford Foundation–can lead to better and more effective interventions by targeting the aging process itself rather than discrete conditions or concerns.”Aging is complex and varies from one person to the next, but there’s a growing body of evidence that aging itself is driven by interconnected biological factors we call ‘hallmarks’ or ‘pillars,'” said Christopher Carpenter, MD, MSc, FACEP, FAAEM, AGSF, one of the co-authors of a report on the conference. “We believe disrupting these hallmarks–which cover everything from the stability of our genes to ways our cells communicate–can contribute to chronic disease and frailty, which is why a better understanding of how they work is so important.”Convened in 2016 as the second conference in a three-part series for recipients of the NIA’s Grants for Early Medical/Surgical Specialists Transition into Aging Research (GEMSSTAR) program, the NIA “U13” conference brought together more than 100 scholars, researchers, leaders representing 19 medical specialties, and NIA representatives to stimulate research across the disciplines involved in high-quality, person-centered care. Conference findings, published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (DOI: 10.1111/jgs.15788), detail how new methods of studying the older-adult population can reveal new tools and accelerate innovative treatments focused on big-picture outcomes important to people’s lives, such as function and independence.Rather than beginning with the discrete health conditions and concerns common among older adults, conference organizers took the unique approach of focusing on aging itself as a primary factor impacting multiple chronic diseases and the declining ability to rebound from health challenges (also known as “resilience”). In doing so, GEMSSTAR scholars advanced our understanding of the concept that targeting age-related mechanisms might delay, prevent, or even reverse geriatric syndromes, age-related chronic diseases, and declines in resilience. Conference sessions also focused on new methods and strategies for studying these aspects of aging, and reviewed the challenges of studying age when older people often have been excluded from medical research.Major themes that emerged from the conference include a need for increased attention to: * The study of our human population as it ages. Most clinical trials still look for people who are “ideal,” such as people who do not have chronic diseases. However, researchers now understand the importance of ensuring pragmatic clinical trials reflect the full spectrum of health for older adults, particularly those who are frail. These individuals often are the most likely to live with multiple chronic diseases, which can be treated best when we understand how medications and other interventions will affect “real” as opposed to “ideal” people. * The need for new tools to help older adults and caregivers adapt to changing health needs. Studying the biology of aging could yield even more approaches to aging-related disease prevention or treatment for geriatrics experts who will be needed in greater numbers as the world continues to age. For example, geriatrics health professionals are already adept at streamlining medication management for common conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure. A better understanding of the interactions of resilience, metabolism, and inflammation with aging, however, could deepen these clinicians’ hypothesis that many common medicines prescribed for these conditions could play a role in supporting general health as we age. * The importance of accelerating how we translate research into promising clinical practice. Conference workshops also focused on ways to make aging research actionable for clinical studies and clinical practice. For example, suggestions included integrating aging concepts into research conducted by “subspecialists” in particular areas of medicine; creating a national, diverse “geroscience biobank” attuned to exploring multimorbidity and frailty in particular; incorporating “precision medicine” as a catalyst for individualized healthcare delivery; using existing databases like the Baltimore Study of Longitudinal Aging to forge collaborations and inform early-stage hypotheses; and creating a standardized “outcomes toolkit” to help bridge the gap between studies of aging and supports for our well-being as we age. * Supporting the future of aging research. As more and more people benefit from increased longevity, specialty clinician-investigators–so named for their expertise in caring for patients and researching how that care takes shape–must be empowered to contribute to the evolution of aging research. Collaboration will be particularly important, said Evan Hadley, MD, Director of the Division of Geriatrics and Clinical Gerontology at the NIA, in his closing remarks for the GEMSSTAR U13 conference. Dr. Hadley emphasized that partnering across disciplines previously seen as independent will be important to future progress, which is why the GEMSSTAR community offered such an important outlet for beginning these discussions. The NIA’s GEMSSTAR program awards support to early-career physicians trained in medical and surgical sub-specialties to conduct transdisciplinary aging research. The AGS serves as a central coordinating body for applicants in particular specialties (anesthesiology, emergency medicine, general surgery, gynecology, orthopedic surgery, physical medicine and rehabilitation, trauma surgery, urology, and vascular surgery) interested in applying for professional development support, and connects these awardees with their specialty societies. Additional funds support a Professional Development Plan to complement the “R03” research project.center_img Source:https://www.americangeriatrics.org/media-center/news/report-prestigious-nih-funded-conference-looks-biological-pillars-aging-betterlast_img read more

Leisuretime sitting but not sitting at work linked with greater risk of

first_imgOur findings show that how you spend your time outside of work may matter more when it comes to heart health. Even if you have a job that requires you to sit for long periods of time, replacing the time you spend sitting at home with strenuous exercise could reduce your risk of heart disease and death.”Study author Keith M. Diaz, PhD, assistant professor of behavioral medicine at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons and a certified exercise physiologist Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Jun 27 2019Sitting for long periods of time has been linked to increased risk of cardiovascular disease and early death, but a new study suggests that not all types of sitting are equally unhealthy.The study, led by researchers at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, found that leisure-time sitting (while watching TV)–but not sitting at work–was associated with a greater risk of heart disease and death among the study’s more than 3,500 participants. The study also found that moderate-to-vigorous exercise may reduce or eliminate the harmful effects of sedentary television watching. The study was published online today in the Journal of the American Heart Association.BackgroundA growing body of research shows that people who are sedentary–especially those who sit for long, uninterrupted periods of time–have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and death.But most previous studies did not follow people over time, making it difficult to draw conclusions about the relationship between sedentary behavior and health risk. These studies have included mainly people of European descent rather than African Americans, a group that has a higher risk of heart disease compared with whites. Previous studies also measured physical activity using an activity monitor, which is unable to distinguish between different types of sedentary behavior.What the study foundThe new study followed 3,592 people, all African Americans, living in Jackson, Miss., for almost 8.5 years. The participants reported how much time they typically spent sitting while watching TV and during work. They also reported how much time they spent exercising in their down time.The participants who had logged the most TV-viewing hours (4 or more hours a day) had a 50% greater risk of cardiovascular events and death compared to those who watched the least amount of TV (less than 2 hours a day).Related StoriesRNA-binding protein SRSF3 appears to be key factor for proper heart contraction, survivalWeightlifting is better for the heart than cardioSmoking triples the risk of death from cardiovascular diseaseIn contrast, those who sat the most at work had the same health risks as those who sat the least.Even for the most dedicated TV watchers, moderate to vigorous physical activity–such as walking briskly or doing aerobic exercise–reduced the risk of heart attacks, stroke, or death. No increased risk of heart attack, stroke, or death was seen in people who watched TV for 4 or more hours a day and engaged in 150 minutes or more of exercise a week.Why does the type of sitting matter?In a previous study, Diaz found that excessive sitting is linked to worse health outcomes, and even more so when sitting occurs in lengthy, uninterrupted bouts.”It may be that most people tend to watch television for hours without moving, while most workers get up from their desk frequently,” Diaz says. “The combination of eating a large meal such as dinner and then sitting for hours could also be particularly harmful.””More research is needed, but it’s possible that just taking a short break from your TV time and going for a walk may be enough to offset the harm of leisure-time sitting,” adds Diaz. “Almost any type of exercise that gets you breathing harder and your heart beating faster may be beneficial.”And although occupational sitting was less problematic, Diaz notes that the same approach to movement applies at work. “We recognize that it isn’t easy for some workers, like truck drivers, to take breaks from sitting, but everyone else should make a regular habit of getting up from their desks. For those who can’t, our findings show that what you do outside of work may be what really counts.”The researchers suspect that the study’s findings may be applicable to anyone who is sedentary, even though the study focused on African Americans.What’s nextIn future studies, Diaz will examine why TV watching may be the most harmful sedentary behavior and whether the timing of sedentary behavior around dinner time could be a contributing factor. Source:Columbia University Irving Medical CenterJournal reference:Diaz, K.M. et al. (2019) Types of Sedentary Behavior and Risk of Cardiovascular Events and Mortality in Blacks: The Jackson Heart Study. Journal of the American Heart Association. doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.118.010406.last_img read more

Not just for kids a leap for seniors at Vegas tech show

first_img Sensors help smartphones keep eye on solo seniors “We can detect falls, but the predictive aspect of it is to monitor changes in behavior so we can alert family members,” Familier said.Also launched at CES was the Addison Virtual Caregiver, a video-based assistant with a female avatar which can converse, offer reminders on medication and detect potential health issues.With the data gathered from the device, “we can classify people as high-risk or low-risk fallers,” said David Keeley, research director for Addison parent firm SameDay Security.”We can predict the rate of functional decline.” Artificial musclesFor those with mobility issues, the California startup Seismic unveiled its wearable tech body suit which can augment a user’s muscles and help them maintain posture.The “core wellness suit,” which weighs under five pounds and can be worn under street clothes, has robotic components that provide up to 30 watts of power to each hip and the lower back to support sitting, standing, lifting, or carrying—similar to an exoskeleton but without the bulk.Sarah Thomas, a Seismic vice president and advisor to tech startups, said the new product is designed not only for the elderly but for factory workers to ease fatigue and anyone with mobility issues.Thomas said tech products for seniors should not be “stigmatized” with unsightly products.”We should be designing with age in mind but without the ageist perspective,” Thomas told a CES panel. © 2019 AFP Explore further With artificial intelligence to detect falls, virtual reality to combat isolation and “powered” clothing to assist the incapacitated, the tech world is stepping up its effort to “disrupt” aging. Sarah Thomas (R) of California startup Seismic talks to the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show about “powered clothing” using robotic muscles to help people with fatigue and disabilities, as customer Bob Copani of San Francisco models the garment “You don’t need to wear anything, there are no cameras,” said Ofer Familier, head of business development for Vayyar.The company, which makes a range of sensor equipment, says Walabot can detect subtle changes in gait, movement or breathing which could signal a risk of a fall or other problem. At the Consumer Electronics Show this week in Las Vegas, exhibitors were showcasing new ways to help the elderly remain independent, mentally fit and connected.Some systems took a page from the gaming world of youngsters to help seniors “travel” to new places and connect with loved ones.”Everyone knows seniors get lonely but that isolation can also lead to a lot of medical problems, including the acceleration of dementia,” said Kyle Rand, founder and chief executive of Rendever, a startup which works with assisted living homes to give seniors a way to virtually visit remote locations.”They can stand atop the Eiffel Tower, they can go on an African safari, or revisit their childhood home.”Rendever was launched in the Washington DC tech incubator created by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), which in recent years has been funding efforts to develop new technologies for seniors.In the consumer space from the AARP incubator, Alcove VR enables seniors to be part of a virtual world with loved ones who may be far away. Pillo, an all-in-one pill dispenser, personal digital assistant, and communication device is displayed at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show David Keeley of SameDay Security debuts the Addison Virtual Caregiver system at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, a digital assistant designed to monitor seniors living alone Alicia Mangram, a Phoenix-based trauma surgeon who is an advisor to Addison, said the system can be useful in helping seniors remain independent.”Right now when we send people home (from a hospital) we don’t know what happens to them,” Mangram said. “This allows us to check on them.”Florida-based startup CarePredict exhibited its system based on a wearable band that helps monitor seniors in assisted living facilities.”We can passively and unobtrusively monitor the daily activities of seniors, and our predictive tools can help identify if they are at risk of falls, depression, malnutrition or urinary tract infections,” said CarePredict’s Jerry Wilmink.Tech firms see a promising market in these kinds of devices, with public attention focused by the Apple Watch’s feature of fall detection.According to research firm eMarketer, Americans of age 55 and older are the fastest-growing group of electronic wearable users in the US, largely due to the devices’ enhanced health features. “You can step into a virtual living room (with a friend or family member and just hang out,” said Cezara Windrem, the AARP product manager for Alcove.Alcove was launched this week as a free application on Oculus, the Facebook-owned virtual reality unit.The AARP exhibit also included VRHealth, which offers cognitive behavioral therapy using virtual reality, and Pillo, a device which serves as a personal assistant and medication dispenser focused on health for seniors.Virtual caregiversOther exhibitors showcased technology that could help seniors remain in their homes, and give family members peace of mind by monitoring their condition, in some cases using predictive analytics to determine if they are at risk.Walabot, a wall-mounted monitoring system developed by the Israeli startup Vayyar, uses radio waves and three-dimensional imaging to keep tabs on seniors living alone. The Walabot fall detection device for seniors from Israeli startup Vayyar is displayed at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show 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. Citation: Not just for kids: a leap for seniors at Vegas tech show (2019, January 11) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-kids-seniors-vegas-tech.html Jerry Wilmink of CarePredict holds a wearable tech band that can help monitor seniors in assisted living and help predict falls or other health issues at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Showlast_img read more

Huawei founder says company would not share user secrets Update

first_img Ren Zhengfei, founder and CEO of Huawei, gestures during a round table meeting with the media in Shenzhen city, south China’s Guangdong province, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. The founder of network gear and smart phone supplier Huawei Technologies said the tech giant would reject requests from the Chinese government to disclose confidential information about its customers. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) Explore further Huawei expects 21% revenue rise despite ‘unfair’ treatment Ren Zhengfei, founder and CEO of Huawei, adjusts his glasses during a round table meeting with the media in Shenzhen city, south China’s Guangdong province, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. The founder of network gear and smart phone supplier Huawei Technologies said the tech giant would reject requests from the Chinese government to disclose confidential information about its customers. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) Two Canadians were arrested by Chinese authorities on national security charges, prompting suggestions abroad they might be hostages to secure Meng’s release. On Monday, a Chinese court announced another Canadian had been sentenced to death in a drug case after he was ordered retried.Asked how he felt that Huawei was linked to accusations Beijing took hostages, Ren said he saw no connection between the Canadians and Meng’s case.Dressed in a blue sport coat and an open-necked light blue shirt, Ren was jovial and animated during the two hour and 20 minute meeting.Ren said he became a Communist Party member in the early 1980s after the state press published reports about his development of a measuring tool for an engineering project. Earlier, he couldn’t join because his father was deemed a “capitalist roader,” but the party was trying to promote young, technologically capable people after the violent, ultra-radical Cultural Revolution in 1976.Ren founded Huawei in 1987 to sell imported telecom switching gear to Chinese phone companies after the PLA disbanded his engineering unit, according to the company.Despite his party membership, Huawei makes decisions based on its customers’ needs, Ren said.”I don’t see a close connection between my personal political beliefs and our commercial decisions,” he said.Huawei’s U.S. market evaporated in 2012 after a congressional panel said the company and its smaller Chinese rival, ZTE Corp., were security risks and urged phone companies to avoid them.But Huawei passed Sweden’s LM Ericsson to become the biggest supplier of network gear and its smartphone brand displaced Apple Inc. last year as the No. 2 global seller behind Samsung.The company forecasts last year’s revenue will exceed $100 billion for the first time. Ren said this year’s target is $125 billion.Huawei says it is employee-owned. Ren said no government entity or any other investor who isn’t a current or former employee owns “one cent of Huawei shares.”Ren said Huawei has no research cooperation with China’s People’s Liberation Army and no dedicated unit for military sales and he knew of no PLA purchases of civilian technology.Ren said the security concerns have yet to have a significant effect on Huawei’s business. The company has signed 5G contracts with 30 carriers and has shipped 25,000 base stations, he said. 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. Ren Zhengfei spoke in a rare meeting with foreign reporters as Huawei Technologies Ltd. tries to protect its access to global telecom carriers that are investing heavily in next-generation technology.His comments were the 74-year-old former military engineer’s most direct public response to accusations his company is controlled by the ruling Communist Party or is required to facilitate Chinese spying.Huawei is China’s first global tech brand. The United States, Australia, Japan and some other governments have imposed curbs on use of its technology over such concerns.”We would definitely say no to such a request,” said Ren when asked how the company would respond to a government demand for confidential information about a foreign buyer of its telecom technology.Ren said neither he nor the company have ever received a government request for “improper information” about anyone.Asked whether Huawei would challenge such an order in court, Ren chuckled and said it would be up to Chinese authorities to “file litigation.”Huawei is facing heightened scrutiny as phone carriers prepare to roll out fifth-generation technology in which Huawei is a leading competitor. 5G is designed to support a vast expansion of networks to serve medical devices, self-driving cars and other technology. That increases the cost of potential security failures and has prompted governments increasingly to treat telecoms communications networks as strategic assets.The company’s image suffered a new blow last week when Polish authorities announced one of its Chinese employees was arrested on spying charges. Huawei announced it fired the employee and said the allegations had nothing to do with the company.Ren is the father of Huawei’s chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested Dec. 1 in Canada on U.S. charges related to possible violations of trade sanctions on Iran.Ren said he couldn’t discuss Meng’s case while it still was before a court. But he said Huawei obeys the law, including export restrictions, wherever it operates.Ren expressed gratitude to Canadian justice officials for their treatment of Meng, who was released on bail and is staying in a house in Vancouver. He also expressed thanks to her fellow jail inmates prior to her release “for treating her kindly.” © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. “After all the evidence is made public, we will rely on the justice system,” he said. “We are sure there will be a just conclusion to this matter. Huawei has plenty of opportunities even if it faces higher barriers in some markets, he said.”If we are not allowed to sell in certain markets, we will have a smaller operation,” he said. “So long as we can feed our employees, we are satisfied.”Ren defended Huawei’s decision to remain privately held—a status that has fueled questions about its intentions and who controls it. He said that helped to preserve its long-term focus on customer service and product development.Publicly owned companies care more about a “beautiful balance sheet” while Huawei is focused on a “strong industry structure,” he said.”Capital tends to be greedy.”Ren also warned against allowing security concerns to divide the globe into isolated markets with incompatible technology standards—a scenario some people have suggested might result from U.S.-Chinese tensions.”Arbitrarily dividing the world into two technology camps can only harm the interests of all society,” he said.Asked about President Donald Trump’s suggestion on Twitter that he might intervene in Meng’s case if that facilitated a resolution of Washington’s tariff battle with Beijing, Ren said he would wait to see whether Trump takes action.”As for President Trump as president, I still believe he is a great president,” Ren said. He said Trump was elected to cut taxes, which he believed was beneficial for American industry.However, he said, “If companies are getting frightened by the detention of certain individuals, then investors might be scared away, and that is not in the interests of the United States.”Ren said he didn’t believe Huawei would face U.S. penalties similar to those that nearly drove smaller Chinese rival ZTE Corp. out of business. Washington barred ZTE from buying American technology over its exports to Iran and North Korea but restored access after the company paid a $1 billion fine, replaced its executive team and installed U.S.-selected compliance monitors.”What happened to ZTE, I don’t believe will happen to Huawei,” said Ren. However, he said, “if it did happen to Huawei, I don’t believe the impact would be very significant. I believe telecom operators would continue to trust Huawei.”Ren said Huawei doesn’t want Beijing to retaliate for foreign restrictions by hampering market access for Apple Inc. and other rivals.”In spite of setbacks in some countries, we are still supportive of China becoming a more open country.” Citation: Huawei founder says company would not share user secrets (Update) (2019, January 15) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-huawei-founder-company-user-secrets.html The founder of China’s Huawei, the world’s biggest supplier of network gear to phone and internet companies, says his company would not share secrets about its customers and their communication networks. Ren Zhengfei, founder and CEO of Huawei, gestures during a round table meeting with the media in Shenzhen city, south China’s Guangdong province, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. The founder of network gear and smart phone supplier Huawei Technologies said the tech giant would reject requests from the Chinese government to disclose confidential information about its customers. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)last_img read more

Pradhan launches DealerOwnedDealerOperated model for CNG stations

first_imgDharmendra Pradhan, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas   –  Kamal Narang SHARE February 11, 2019 petroleum natural gas Moving towards liberalising the natural gas retailing segment, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas has launched the Dealer Owned Dealer Operated (DODO) model for setting up CNG stations.Speaking at launch held at the sidelines of Petrotech – 2019, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan said, “The country is moving towards the gas economy, as this fuel is cheaper and less polluting. The Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board has undertaken unprecedented expansion of City Gas Distribution network, and this will lead to laying of more gas pipelines, increased production and availability of the gas, and also last mile connectivity of the infrastructure to provide Compressed Natural Gas and Piped Natural Gas to the consumers.”Under the general guidelines for the scheme, the entire earmarked dealer plot shall be developed exclusively for setting up of CNG station and allied commercial activities at the discretion of City Gas Distribution activities. Under the scheme, 87 Geographical areas serviced by 23 entities authorized will be covered, an official statement said.As more and more CNG stations come up, more than 10% CNG stations may be based on DODO model, the statement added.center_img Published on COMMENT SHARE SHARE EMAIL COMMENTSlast_img read more

Most Asean markets fall on weak China data Singapore edges up

first_imgEquity selling in the country was exacerbated by the central bank’s steps to curb short-term speculative capital flows in a bid to weaken the baht. A stronger local currency hurts the country’s exports. World 04 Jun 2019 Highlights: U.S. President Donald Trump’s news conference with PM May Investors now await second-quarter GDP data from China due on Monday. A Reuters poll sees growth slowing to its weakest pace in at least 27 years. SINGAPORE: Most Southeast Asian stock markets ended lower on Friday after weak trade data from China, the region’s biggest trading partner, spelt further weakness for the broader Asian economy.China’s June exports fell and imports shrank more than expected as a trade tiff with the United States continued to erode demand in the country.Fears of a resurgence in trade tensions also weighed on regional stocks after US. President Donald Trump said in a tweet that China was not living up to promises it made on buying agricultural products from American farmers. Indonesian stocks closed 0.7% lower and led regional losses, with the maximum  pressure on the benchmark coming from consumer staples and telecommunication stocks. Telekom Indonesia closed more than 2% lower, while cigarette maker Gudang Garam shed more than 3%. Related News An index of the country’s 45 most liquid stocks closed down 0.9%.     Related News Tags / Keywords: Seven of 11 economists surveyed by Reuters expect the central bank to ease policy in October after the island state saw its slowest economic expansion in a decade for the second quarter. – rEUTERS Markets World 08 Jul 2019 Ambassador leaks are a ‘matter of regret’, Britain tells U.S World 08 Jul 2019 In jab at U.S., China vice president says world cannot shut China out Singapore stocks closed slightly higher as investors bet on equities benefiting from local monetary policy easing.  Local stock indexes closed the week largely unchanged as buying in anticipation of U.S. monetary easing was offset by weaker economic readings. {{category}} {{time}} {{title}} Thai stocks ended 0.5% lower, with losses across all sectors. Oil and gas explorer PTT and hospital operator Bangkok Dusit Medical Services were among the largest drags on the benchmark.last_img read more