SpaceX Wins $440 Million NASA Contract to Replace the Space Shuttle

first_imgjon mitchell Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img Tags:#space#web Aerospace firm SpaceX announced Friday that it won a $440 million contract from NASA to modify its Dragon capsule for human space flight as a private-sector successor to the Space Shuttle. The plan is to launch the first Dragon flight carrying American astronauts by 2015.The Dragon capsule can carry seven astronauts, and it launches aboard the 227 foot-tall SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. These vehicles proved themselves in May in an unmanned mission in which Dragon became the first private spacecraft to dock with the International Space Station.Since that mission, SpaceX has undergone tests to ensure that the vehicles are ready for manned spaceflight. On July 17, Dragon passed NASA’s design review, which outlined its new launch pad emergency procedures, its life-support systems, cockpit design and propulsive landing system. While the unmanned Dragon splashed down in the ocean, the piloted version will have thrusters to guide it to a landing.“This is a decisive milestone in human spaceflight and sets an exciting course for the next phase of American space exploration,” SpaceX CEO and Chief Designer Elon Musk said in a press release. “SpaceX, along with our partners at NASA, will continue to push the boundaries of space technology to develop the safest, most advanced crew vehicle ever flown.”See also: Profile of SpaceX Founder Elon Musk Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more

Mamata’s dharna unbecoming of a CM, says PM Modi

first_imgPrime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday criticised West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for her recent protest here, saying it was first time in the history of the country that a Chief Minister went on a sit-in in support of those who have duped millions of people.“Crores of people in the State and families of those who committed suicide after losing their savings are asking questions as to why are you [Ms. Banerjee] are scared of investigation in the chit fund scam. Why were you on dharna in support of those who compromised the investigation,” Mr. Modi asked. Ms. Banerjee staged the protest on February 3 when a group of CBI officers knocked on the doors of Kolkata police chief Rajeev Kumar, who had investigated the scam earlier. She withdrew it on February 5 after the Supreme Court passed an order restraining the agency from arresting Mr. Kumar. The Prime Minister, addressing a rally at Maynagudi in Jalpaigudi district of West Bengal, said that he wanted to assure every family who suffered in the scam that the chowkidaar would not spare the people who had looted their savings. “Whether it is the one who has looted or who is providing protection to those who indulged in the loot, nobody will be spared. They can come in large numbers and sit on dharna. They can bring as many leaders as they can, but they will have to give an account of every penny taken away from the poor,” Mr. Modi said in the speech, which was streamed live on a number of social networking sites of the BJP.Fight against corruptionUsing the term Mahamilawat (highly adulterated) to describe the Opposition parties once again, the Prime Minister said that he would not allow their attempts to protect brokers and middlemen involved in corruption to succeed. Citing the stand taken by the State unit of the Congress on opposing the Trinamool government, Mr. Modi took a jibe at Congress president Rahul Gandhi. “While leaders of the State Congress are saying there is lawlessness in West Bengal and the corrupt and goons are ruling the State, in Delhi the brother-in-law of Mr. Vadra is singing the tune of Didi [Ms. Banerjeee],” Mr. Modi said.During his 40-minute speech, he spoke about the protests in Kolkata, and dubbed the Trinamool rule in West Bengal as “part two rule of the Communists” alleging that the party had brought the same culture of political violence. On the issue of triple talaq, he targeted the Congress and said that the party’s stand has cheated millions of Muslim women.last_img read more

AB de Villiers displaces Virat Kohli as No.1 ODI batsman

first_imgSouth Africa batsman AB de Villiers has once again grabbed the top position in the ICC ODI Player Rankings while Pakistan’s Hasan Ali has emerged as a new number one among bowlers in the latest ranking updates carried out on Friday.An astonishing knock of 176 by de Villiers in the second ODI against Bangladesh in Paarl, which consisted of 15 fours and seven sixes and came off only 104 balls, has also helped South Africa edge India at the top of the ICC ODI Team Rankings by taking a 2-0 winning lead in the three-match series.The latest rankings, which take into account the first two matches of the South Africa-Bangladesh series and the first three matches of the ongoing Pakistan-Sri Lanka series in the United Arab Emirates, sees de Villiers climb to the top of the ODI table for the 14th time in his career.De Villiers, who has leapfrogged Australian David Warner and India captain Virat Kohli, had first attained top position on 30 May 2010 and the number of days he has spent at the top is second most after retired Windies great Vivian Richards. De Villiers has now been at the top for 2,124 days while Richards was number one for 2,306 days.Other batsmen to move up include Pakistan’s Babar Azam (up two places to a career-best fourth position), the South African pair of Quinton de Kock (up three places to fifth) and Hashim Amla (up two places to ninth), and Bangladesh’s Mushfiqur Rahim (up five places to 18th).HASAN ALI TOP BOWLERadvertisementAmong bowlers, Hasan Ali’s haul of five for 34 in the third ODI against Sri Lanka in Abu Dhabi, which his team won by seven wickets for a decisive 3-0 lead in the five-match series, has given the pace bowler a big boost in ranking points.The 23-year-old, who has taken nine wickets in the series so far, has moved up six places to become the fifth bowler at the top of the ODI rankings this year after Trent Boult, Imran Tahir, Kagiso Rabada and Josh Hazlewood.Outside of the top 20, Sri Lanka’s Suranga Lakmal (up three places to 36th), South Africa’s Andile Phehlukwayo (up 30 places to 52nd) and Bangladesh’s Rubel Hossain (up seven places to 61st) are the other bowlers to move northwards.HAFEEZ BACK AS NO.1 ALL-ROUNDERPakistan’s Mohammad Hafeez is back as the top all-rounder, edging Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan. Hafeez, who first attained top ranking in January 2013, has reached the top spot for the ninth time.Meanwhile, India will be looking to wrest back the top spot in the team rankings when they take on New Zealand in an upcoming three-match series.South Africa and India are both on 120 points with South Africa ahead on decimal points. South Africa can reach 121 points if they complete a 3-0 series win over Bangladesh but India will overtake them if they win the opening match against New Zealand, to be played the same day as the last South Africa-Bangladesh match, on 22 October.If India win that match, they too will be on 121 points but ahead in decimal-point calculation. However, India will have to win the series against New Zealand 3-0 to retain the top spot should South Africa win the last match against Bangladesh.last_img read more

WTA Finals: Proud Caroline Wozniacki delighted at fighting week in Singapore

first_imgCaroline Wozniacki feels nothing but pride as she heads into the off-season on the back of the biggest win of her career after the Dane staved off a furious Venus Williams comeback to claim the WTA Finals title for a first time on Sunday.Facing an opponent who enjoyed a 7-0 winning record against her, Wozniacki continued to display the form and variation she had all week in Singapore to emerge with a 6-4 6-4 victory in her fifth appearance at the elite, eight-woman event.”It feels great. Going into the tournament, you know that it’s going to be a tough one, regardless. You may leave it being 0-3 at the end of the year but you hope for the best and you hope that you can play your best tennis,” she told reporters.Congrats, @CaroWozniacki!Lift that #WTAFinals trophy! ??? WTA (@WTA) October 29, 2017″I’m really proud of how I have played all week and how I have fought and how I really produced some great fighting out there,” added the 27-year-old, who reached the final of the event in 2010 to go with two U.S. Open final defeats.”To be here with the trophy means a lot and it’s a great way to finish off the year.”Wozniacki had appeared to be cruising to victory at 6-4 5-0 after barely an hour on court but needed to stay calm in the face of a fierce onslaught from her 37-year-old opponent, who simply refused to give up on her own shot at glory.advertisement”I’m still shaking” -@CaroWozniacki WTA (@WTA) October 29, 2017″I honestly think I served and I returned pretty well,” Wozniacki added when reviewing her performance.”I think I got a lot of her serves back, and obviously she has a big first serve, but at the same time I tried to keep pressure on her and tried to take a little bit of time away and stay a little bit closer to the baseline.”She does great angles. When you play against her, she manages to put the ball very close to the line and with an angle you don’t really get from any other player, so it catches you a bit off guard and then she opens up the other side of the court.”It got really tight at the end. I was just hoping for the best” – #WTAFinals champion @CaroWozniacki WTA (@WTA) October 29, 2017″It was important for me to try and cut the angles and try and take the ball on the rise and I think I did that pretty well.”Wozniacki will rise three places to number three in the world rankings following her triumph but the Dane was just looking forward to a nice, long break before the new season starts.”I’m very happy the season is finished right now. I will finish on a high. Just go on vacation, enjoy myself and rest. It’s been a long year. It’s been a great year,” she added.”Eventually we have to draw a line in the sand and, you know, say it’s been a great one. You know, in a month’s time, I will start preparing for the next season, but for now I will not be touching a racket for the next four weeks.”last_img read more

OSU career QB records

first_imgPhoto Attribution: USATSIPhoto Attribution: USATSII thought it would be fun to look at career starting QB records in the Miles/Gundy era. There have been 168 since Aso Pogi took over for Tony Lindsay in the Iowa State game in 2000 — I compiled starting QB records for all of them.For a few of these games I just took the guy who played more of the game. Example: I don’t think Zac started against Florida Atlantic in 2007 but he played the majority of the game so he gets credit for the win.Same for Clint Chelf in the 2013 TCU game. Most are just straight starter though. I gave Weeden the 2009 Colorado game (duh).Aso Pogi: 3-12 (20%) — He split time until the Iowa State game at home in 2000. That lasted until Baylor and OU in 2001. Fields played more in both of those games so I’m giving him Ws.Josh Fields: 19-9 (68%) — Went from Baylor in 2001 until the Cotton Bowl in 2003. Pretty great career. Beat OU twice!Donovan Woods: 9-5 (64%) — He lasted from the UCLA opener in 2004 (he threw eight passes and we won!) until the Arkansas State game in 2005 when Bobby took over.Al Pena: 0-5 (0%) — Lost all five games he started in 2005 while Bobby backed him up. Somehow threw 13 picks in 179 attempts that year. Context: Weeden threw 13 on 565 attempts in 2011 and 13 more on 511 attempts in 2010.Bobby Reid: 9-8 (53%) — From Arkansas State in 2005 through Georgia in 2007 with five games to Pena in ’05 and one (A&M in 2006) to Zac. I’ll give the Bedlam loss in 2006 to Reid even though Zac played a lot.Zac Robinson: 24-14 (63%) — Weird that he won as many games than Weeden. One of my favorite OSU players ever. I was bummed about the way his career ended.Brandon Weeden: 24-3 (88%) — Didn’t even have to look it up.Wes Lunt: 2-2 (50%) — He gets Savannah, Arizona, TCU, and Kansas State from last year.JW Walsh: 7-2 (78%) — I gave Chelf the TCU game from this year. I bag on Walsh but his winning percentage is legit. Should probably be 8-1, too, with the Texas game from last year.Clint Chelf: 9-2 (82%) — That OU game last year is killing him. He could easily be 10-1.So of the QBs in the Miles/Gundy era that have started more than 10 games, here they are ranked by winning percentage:1. Weeden2. Chelf3. Fields4. Donovan5. Zac6. Bobby7. PogiThat’s pretty crazy.I know some of this is misleading — Zac would have committed felonies to have the defense Chelf and Walsh have — but don’t discredit what the two of them have done.It’s been incredibly impressive.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

Pulwama attack: Tamil Nadu grieves its bravehearts

first_imgPulwama attack: Tamil Nadu grieves its braveheartsThe martyred soldiers were the sole breadwinners of their familiesadvertisement Lokpria Vasudevan ChennaiFebruary 16, 2019UPDATED: February 16, 2019 15:57 IST Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami on Friday condoled the deaths of the jawans and announced a compensation of Rs 20 lakh and a government job to the kin of the martyrs.Two of the 40 Central Police Reserve Force (CRPF) personnel who were martyred in the terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district on February 14 came from Tamil Nadu.Just an hour before the dastardly attack, Constable G Subramanium had spoken to his wife Krishnaveni to ask about his father who underwent a cataract operation in January.Hailing from the nondescript village of Seevalaperi in Tuticorin district, 28-year-old Subramaniam had joined the forces in 2014 after completing ITI. Part of the 82 battalion, Subramanium had been posted in Srinagar a year ago.It was only on February 10 that he had returned to duty after spending a month-long vacation with his family. During his stay at home, he had celebrated the festival of Thalai Pongal with his wife Krishnaveni. The couple had marriedonly in 2018.”He used to proudly say that he would be happy to die for the nation. That has come true. He died very young. We did not even live our life together,” a sobbing Krishnaveni said.Ganapathy, Subramanium’s father, could not hold back his tears as he remembered his doting son. “My son was the breadwinner of our family. His loss is irreplaceable. Even during his holidays, he worked on the farm to support us. He took me to the hospital for my cataract surgery. He used to call from Jammu and ask if I had taken my medicines. What will we do without him,” he said.As a soft-spoken youngster, Subramanium aspired to join the uniformed services from his childhood. A sports enthusiast, he would encourage the youngsters to be physically fit and had been instrumental in forming the Kabbadi club in the village. He actively took part in the sports events organised as part of the Pongal celebrations at his village.advertisementA pall of gloom descended in Karkudi village in Ariyalur from where CRPF jawan C Sivachandran hailed. 32-year-old Sivachandran worked as a teacher before joining the forces in 2010. He had returned to Jammu on February 9 after spending holidays with his family. Survived by his wife Gandhimathi and 2-year-old son, Sivachandran dreamt of raising his son to become an IPS officer.”I spoke to my husband three days back when he reached Delhi. I had asked him to be safe and he had asked me to not worry and take care of our son. He was very proud of serving the nation,” she said.Hailing from a family of farm laborers, Sivachandran too was the sole breadwinner. His demise came as a rude shock to the family who just the last year had lost their younger son.”My younger son died of electrocution last year and now my elder son is also dead. What are we going to do?” Chinnayan, father of the martyred jawan, said.Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palanisami on Friday condoled the deaths of the jawans and announced a compensation of Rs 20 lakh and a government job to the kin of the martyrs.Follow | Pulwama terror attack Live updates: Rajnath Singh calls all party meeting to discuss India’s moveAlso read | Pulwama terror attack: India salutes its bravehearts, proud families bid teary goodbyes Also read | Don’t know if I’ll return, take care of the kids: Slain CRPF jawan told wife before Pulwama attackAlso watch | PM Modi pays his final respects to slain CRPF jawansFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Tags :Follow Pulwama attacklast_img read more

KSAC Approves Resolution for Vending Areas in Downtown Kingston

first_imgThe Kingston and St. Andrew Corporation (KSAC), led by Mayor of Kingston, Senator Angela Brown Burke, passed a Resolution for prescribed vending areas in downtown Kingston yesterday November  13, 2012. These designated areas are: New Chapel Lane from Beckford Street to Spanish Town Road (ground provision); Pechon Street from Beckford Street to Spanish Town Road; West Street from West Queen Street to Heywood Street; and Princess Street from West Queen Street to Heywood Street. Also prescribed as vending areas are: Luke Lane from West Queen Street to Heywood Street; Mathews Lane from Beckford Street to Heywood Street (eastern sidewalks); Heywood Street from Pechon Street to Orange Street; and Beckford Street from West Street to Darling Street. The KSAC will also take immediate steps to make the area known as Open Market west, bounded by Pechon, Beckford, West and Barry Streets, available for additional vending spaces, and parking where necessary.last_img read more

Parateachers should take classes instead of agitating CM

first_imgKolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has hit out at para-teachers for launching agitations demanding salary hike, instead of taking classes. Para-teachers, contractual educators in government and government-aided schools of the state, had recently staged a protest in Nadia’s Kalyani demanding pay hike, following which they were allegedly caned by the police. “Para-teachers should know, I have great respect for you. You educate the young generation. But should you stop taking classes for joining agitations and wear black badges?” Banerjee said at an administrative meeting in Howrah on Monday. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari Puja Mentioning that the para-teachers had been recruited by the previous Left Front regime, Banerjee claimed that after coming to power, her government had effected a substantial rise in their salary. “While they (para-teachers) were getting Rs 4,000 in 2011-2012, we increased it to more than double in 2018. Now just a year has passed and they are demanding another hike”, she said. She regretted that para-teachers are even threatening to call a strike. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highway Banerjee also announced regularisation of services of part-time and whole-time contractual college teachers. These teachers would be able to continue their services till the age of 60 and the gratuity would be increased from Rs one lakh to Rs three lakh. The state will name the part-time and whole-time contractual teachers of colleges as ‘State Aided College Teachers’ (SACT), the CM said. While those meeting the educational qualifications set by the UGC and with more than 10 years of experience would get Rs 30,000 per month and those having the requisite qualifications but with less than 10 years experience would be paid Rs 26,000. Teachers not fulfilling the UGC criteria but with above 10 years experience would be given Rs 20,000. Those with upto 10 years experience would be given Rs 15,000, Banerjee said. She said there are around 13,500 such teachers in different colleges, who will come under the SACT. From now on, college managing committees would not be allowed to appoint any contractual teacher without the approval of the Higher Education department, the chief minister said.last_img read more

Bank of Canada minimum wage job loss projection follows Conference Board prediction

first_imgThe Bank of Canada’s latest projection of how minimum wage increases in Alberta and Ontario will affect job losses comes as no surprise to the Conference Board of Canada’s director of provincial and territorial forecast service.“It’s in the same kind of range as what we expect,” Marie-Christine Bernard said after the bank’s latest report.The BOC’s “The Impacts of Minimum Wage Increases on the Canadian Economy” study stated while the net impact on labour income would be positive, there would be job losses.“The planned minimum wage increases would reduce national employment by about 60,000 jobs relative to otherwise by 2019,” the report said, while also looking at the effect on GDP.“Minimum wage increases would reduce the level of gross domestic product by roughly 0.1 per cent by early 2019 and boost CPI inflation by about 0.1 pp,” the report said.Bernard pointed out the board’s prediction was actually lower than the bank’s predicting a loss of around 50,000 jobs, with a vast majority coming in Ontario rather than Alberta.“We also have to consider where the minimum wage is compared to the median wage in the province,” she said. “In Ontario, it’s going to be substantially higher.“In Alberta not as much, because there’s less people earning minimum wage in Alberta.”Ontario raised its minimum wage to $14 per hour on Jan. 1 from $11.60 and plans to increase it to $15 in 2019, while Alberta is expected to raise its minimum wage to $15 later this year.Bernard said the losses would include both Canadians losing their current jobs, as well as planned positions that won’t go forward.“Maybe a business would’ve hired a worker and now they’re not,” she said.Both the bank and the board said the number of losses could be less than their projections, depending on how businesses react to the increases, for example by reducing the number of hours employees work.660 NEWS Business Editor Richard Southern said, however, he’s not convinced.“It’s not what we’ve seen in the past,” he said on Twitter. “Goldman Sachs analysis recently found that U.S states where the minimum wage went up had faster employment growth.”To read the full report, click here.last_img read more

Forget Netflix – The real joy of movies is still in theatres

NEW YORK — Sure, it’s easy to Netflix and chill these days. Or Prime and recline. Or Hulu and … well, whatever. But if you really want to savour a film, there’s still no substitute for a movie theatre.Turns out that there are few better ways to rediscover the joy of heading to the theatre than a year of free movie tickets, courtesy of MoviePass. Among the greatest attractions: no distractions from Facebook, online chats, household chores and what not.I was a regular moviegoer until ticket prices rocketed past $10 several years ago. In New York, $15 is now common; some theatres can charge $18 or $19, even before 3D and other surcharges. Streaming at home became far more affordable — and convenient. Who has time to go to the movies when you’re already behind on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and everything else?But then came a too-good-to-be-true subscription deal from MoviePass, offering a daily movie for a year for just $94. With ticket prices no longer an issue, I ended up seeing 181 movies that would have cost me $2,747 without MoviePass. That’s 52 cents per film, a 97 per cent discount from $15. The deal was so good that MoviePass no longer offers it.That MoviePass subscription has expired, but I’ve already seen 42 movies on other subscriptions this year — a mix of Sinemia, AMC A-List and memberships with individual theatres. It’s costing about $60 a month in all, far more than the $8 a month with MoviePass — but all worth it.I confess I have it easier than many people. Having no kids means no worries about babysitters and bedtime. I can squeeze in a 10 p.m. showing after a night out with friends.Once the lights dim, it’s just the movie and me.When watching Netflix, you need discipline to put your phone or laptop away. I’ve sometimes had to consult Wikipedia for a plot point I missed because I was responding to a text or reading about the next movie to watch. Even folding laundry takes your eyes off the screen.And while it’s convenient to be able to stream movies in bits and pieces, as time permits, that detracts from their rhythm and pacing. Some movies, such as the Netflix drama “Roma,” are meant to feel slow and deliberate, but you lose that feeling if you multitask on Facebook. The Netflix thriller “Bird Box” just doesn’t feel right without the proper buildup of suspense.Costumes and landscapes come to life on the theatre’s big screen. Rock climber Alex Honnold’s nerve-wracking, rope-free ascent of the gigantic Yosemite rock formation El Capitan in “Free Solo” wouldn’t have been the same on a phone. This documentary was even worth watching a second time, in the mega-size Imax format.Then there was “Cold War,” a Polish drama on romance in the Eastern Bloc. It was filmed in black and white in the boxy, 4-by-3 frame used by TV screens of that era. That gives the movie a nostalgic feel, even though it just came out. With streaming, video sometimes gets squeezed or stretched to match the dimensions of the TV or phone.Sound quality at many theatres far exceeds what I could get at home. That became clear watching — and hearing — “Bohemian Rhapsody,” about the rock band Queen, and “A Star is Born,” a Lady Gaga-led drama on a singer’s rise to fame.True, theatres can still be a hassle. You have to be there at showtime — and then big theatre chains show nearly a half-hour of trailers. (I typically read an e-book at low brightness or catch up on podcasts.) Coordinating schedules with friends can also be complicated, though if you’re OK watching movies alone, that doesn’t have to be a problem.Spending all that time at the multiplex has changed how I watch movies and shows at home. I try harder to pay attention; my phone’s screen-time controls, which block message notifications and the like, help me focus. But it still takes willpower, like avoiding the chocolate cake that’s right in front of you.For that reason, I choose theatres when I can, even when streaming is available right away. Some movies never make it to theatres outside big cities. I don’t have that problem in New York, where several theatres show more than just the latest mega-blockbuster sequels.So instead of asking, “Who has time to go the movies?,” I ask myself, “Who has time for streaming?” And Netflix just raised its prices yet again. Hmmm.Anick Jesdanun, The Associated Press read more

Most actively traded companies on the TSX

The Canadian Press Some of the most active companies traded Tuesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange:Toronto Stock Exchange (16,188.10, down 63.27 points).Aurora Cannabis Inc. (TSX:ACB). Health care. Down four cents, or 0.3 per cent, to $13.22 on 21.8 million shares.The Green Organic Dutchman Holdings. (TSX:TGOD). Health care. Up 38 cents, or 7.45 per cent, to $5.48 on 17.7 million shares.Hexo Corp. (TSX:HEXO). Health care. Up 29 cents, or 3.25 per cent, to $9.20 on 10.5 million shares.Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. (TSX:CNQ). Energy. Down 45 cents, or 1.2 per cent, to $36.94 on 8.2 million shares.Encana Corp. (TSX:ECA). Energy. Down 24 cents, or 2.39 per cent, to $9.79 on 6.6 million shares.Aphria Inc. (TSX:APHA). Health care. Up six cents, or 0.44 per cent, to $13.71 on 6.4 million shares.Companies reporting:Air Canada (TSX:AC). Up 33 cents to $31.75. Air Canada has decided to remove its grounded Boeing 737 Max 8 jets from service until at least July 1 in order to provide more certainty for passengers that wish to book flights in the coming months. Canada’s largest airline announced Tuesday that it has substituted different aircraft in its fleet, chartered flights or leased aircraft from Air Transat, suspended some routes temporarily, and adjusted its rebooking policy for affected customers. read more

ChinaCanada differences go beyond Beijings critical outgoing envoy Carr

OTTAWA — Canada’s trade minister is downplaying the forthcoming departure of China’s outspoken envoy to Ottawa, saying differences between the countries stretch beyond the ambassador’s level.Jim Carr says in an interview that the federal government is awaiting China’s decision on its replacement for outgoing ambassador Lu Shaye, who has had harsh words for Canada during his two-year tenure.Sources say the French-speaking Lu will leave his Ottawa post in the coming weeks for a new position in Paris.Canada’s relationship with its second-biggest trading partner has deteriorated rapidly since the December arrest of a Huawei senior executive in Vancouver following an extradition request by the United States.China was outraged by the arrest of Meng Wanzhou, and has since detained two Canadians on allegations of espionage, sentenced two Canadians to death for drug-related convictions and blocked key agricultural shipments such as canola.Asked about Lu’s criticisms, Carr says personalities are not at the centre of the diplomatic dispute, and that the ambassador’s job is to express the view of his government.Lu has used strong words when talking about the Canada-China relationship — for example, he told Canadian journalists last winter that Meng’s arrest was the “backstabbing” of a friend and evidence of white supremacism.He also warned of repercussions if the federal government bars Huawei from selling equipment to build a next-generation 5G wireless network in Canada.Carr said the Liberal government still hopes to solve the bilateral differences by engaging China on many levels, not just through an ambassador.“I would only assume that whatever is being spoken by the Chinese ambassador to Canada has the full support of the government, so this is an issue that goes beyond the ambassadorial level,” Carr said Wednesday before leaving for Japan on a trade mission to find new markets for Canadian products, including canola.“Of course, we await the decision of the Chinese government to replace the existing ambassador and we will reach out to whomever is in that place and make the same arguments to him or her that we’re making now.”Word of Lu’s departure comes at a time when Canada does not have an ambassador in Beijing. Last winter, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau fired Canada’s former ambassador to China, John McCallum, for going off-script in the government’s efforts to win the release of the two detained Canadians, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor. Before his posting in Beijing, McCallum was a longtime Liberal MP and cabinet minister.The Canadian Press read more

UN online tool allows people to track nations pledges on climate change

People around the world can now keep tabs on countries’ promises and proposals on combating climate change, thanks to a new online tool launched today by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).The Climate Pledge Tracker was launched today in Copenhagen, Denmark, where nations are currently meeting with the aim of agreeing on an ambitious new agreement.The new programme will be updated as new proposals are made in the Danish capital, and it compares and consolidates all pledges made to date with the goal of keeping global temperature rise at or under 2 degrees centigrade from pre-industrial levels.The Nobel Peace Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has found that to stave off the worst effects of climate change, industrialized countries must slash greenhouse gas emissions by 25 to 40 per cent from 1990 levels by 2020, and that global emissions must be halved by 2050.“With this tracker, everyone – within the [Copenhagen] conference and beyond – can, from their office or living room, monitor the ambition of governments to ‘seal a convincing deal’ by 18 December,” when the gathering is set to end, according to Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director.The tracking system, which will continue to be operational after the Copenhagen conference ends, currently lists the pledges and proposals from 25 countries – including developing economies such as China, India and Costa Rica – and the European Union’s 27 Member States.It estimates that if the most ambitious existing pledges are fully realized, including with financial support for developing countries, the world would be on track to achieve emissions reductions of 47.5 billion tons by 2020, which is close to what is required to give the world a 50 per cent chance of meeting the 2 degrees centigrade temperature target. 11 December 2009People around the world can now keep tabs on countries’ promises and proposals on combating climate change, thanks to a new online tool launched today by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). read more

Smoke cockpit woes signal chaotic end for EgyptAir plane

Smoke, cockpit woes signal chaotic end for EgyptAir plane CAIRO – Leaked flight data showing trouble in the cockpit and smoke in a plane lavatory are bringing into focus the chaotic final moments of EgyptAir Flight 804, including a three-minute period before contact was lost as alarms on the Airbus 320 screeched one after another.Officials caution it’s still too early to say what happened to the aircraft — France’s foreign minister said Saturday that “all the hypotheses are being examined” — but mounting evidence points to a sudden, dramatic catastrophe that led to its crash into the eastern Mediterranean early Thursday.The Egyptian military on Saturday released the first images of aircraft debris plucked from the sea, including personal items and damaged seats. Egypt is leading a multi-nation effort to search for the plane’s black boxes — the flight data and cockpit voice recorders — and other clues that could help explain its sudden plunge into the sea.“If they lost the aircraft within three minutes that’s very, very quick,” said aviation security expert Philip Baum. “They were dealing with an extremely serious incident.”Authorities say the plane lurched left, then right, spun all the way around and plummeted 38,000 feet (11,582 metres) into the sea — never issuing a distress call.The Facebook page of the chief spokesman for Egypt’s military showed the first photographs of debris from the plane, shredded remains of plane seats, life jackets — one seemingly undamaged — and a scrap of cloth that might be part of a baby’s purple-and-pink blanket.The spokesman, Brig-Gen. Mohammed Samir, later posted a video showing what appeared to be a piece of blue carpet, seat belts, a shoe and a white handbag. The clip opened with aerial footage of an unidentified navy ship followed by a speedboat heading toward floating debris.Flight 804 left from Paris’ Charles de Gaulle Airport on Wednesday night en route to Cairo with 66 people aboard. The first available audio from the doomed flight indicates that all was routine as the pilot checked in with air traffic controllers in Zurich, Switzerland, around midnight, before being handed over to Italian air traffic controllers in Padua (Padova): Pilot — “This is 0-7-2-5 Padova control. (Unintelligible) 8-0-4. Thank you so much. Good day er good night.”The communication, taken from which provides live air traffic control broadcasts from around the world, occurred about 2 1/2 hours before Greek air traffic controllers lost contact with the plane.Greek officials say at 2:24 a.m. local time the flight entered the Athens sector of Greek airspace. Twenty-four minutes later, controllers chatted with the pilot, who appeared to be in good spirits.In Greek, the pilot quipped: “Thank you.”At 3:12 a.m., the plane passed over the Greek island of Kasos before heading into the eastern Mediterranean, according to flight data maintained by FlightRadar24.Less than 15 minutes later, about midway between Greece and Egypt, a sensor detected smoke in a lavatory and a fault in two of the plane’s cockpit windows, according to leaked flight data published by The Aviation Herald.Messages like these “generally mean the start of a fire,” said Sebastien Barthe, a spokesman for France’s air accident investigation agency. But he warned against inferring too much more from the reading. “Everything else is pure conjecture.”At 3:27 a.m. Greek time, air traffic controllers in Athens attempted to contact the plane to hand over monitoring of the flight from Greek to Egyptian authorities, according to Greek officials. There was no response from the plane despite repeated calls, including on the emergency frequency. At the same time, a sensor detected that smoke had reached the aircraft’s avionics, the network of computers and wires that control the plane, according to the leaked flight data.Two minutes later, the aircraft reached Egyptian airspace. Alarms went off warning about the plane’s autopilot and wing control systems, suggesting serious structural problems. Within seconds, the plane fell off the radar (about 2:30 a.m. Egyptian time, which is behind Greek summer time). Air traffic controllers in Cairo sought assistance from the Egyptian air force to track the missing plane — to no avail.David Learmount, a widely respected aviation expert and editor of the authoritative Flightglobal magazine, said Aviation Herald’s reported readings from the plane’s Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System, or ACARS, suggested a quick-spreading fire.On his website, Learmount wrote: “The question now is whether the fire that caused the smoke was the result of an electrical fault — for example a short-circuit caused by damaged wiring — or whether some form of explosive or incendiary device was used.”In the absence of a claim of responsibility, it’s still unclear whether the crash was the result of a fault or an attack, Learmount wrote.Egyptian aviation expert Hossam Elhamy Shaker said the presence of smoke on board alone does not solve the mystery.“It just leads us into an area where smoke is a major contributor to the incident, either by destroying the aircraft’s equipment or suffocating the pilots,” he said.Baum was skeptical that a fire alone was the reason the plane went down.“Fires happen aboard aircraft, but they don’t usually result in the destruction of the aircraft in three minutes,” he said.Some have wondered at the lack of a mayday signal, but Baum said that could make sense if the crew were unconscious or struggling to regain control of the aircraft.Investigators have been poring over the plane’s passenger list and questioning ground crew at Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport, where the airplane took off. Ships and planes from Britain, Cyprus, Egypt, France, Greece and the United States have taken part searching a wide area of sea 180 miles (290 kilometres) north of the Egyptian port city of Alexandria.The waters in the area are 8,000 to 10,000 feet deep (2,440 to 3,050 metres). Pings from the plane’s black boxes can be detected up to a depth of 20,000 feet (6 kilometres).Egyptian authorities have said they believe terrorism is a more likely explanation than equipment failure, and some aviation experts say the erratic finale to the flight suggests a bomb blast or a struggle in the cockpit — though no evidence of that have emerged.“All the hypotheses are being examined — none are being favoured,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault told reporters Saturday after meeting with about 100 family members of the victims to express “our profound compassion” over the crash.At Charles de Gaulle airport on Saturday, dozens of passengers — mostly Egyptians — queued up for the latest EgyptAir flight to Cairo. Checks were thorough but there were no overt signs of extra security in the waiting area. A French security team did walk through the plane’s aisles, however, before the aircraft took off.Whatever caused the aircraft to crash, the tragedy deepens Egypt’s struggles to revive a battered economy. While the EgyptAir crash may not reflect directly on Egypt’s airports — unlike a Russian jet bombed in October by the Islamic State group that took off from an Egyptian resort — the country’s association with yet another air disaster will further damage tourism and the flow of foreign investment.___Satter reported from Paris. Angela Charlton and Brian Rohan in Paris, and Demetris Nellas in Athens contributed to this report. by Raphael Satter And Hamza Hendawi, The Associated Press Posted May 20, 2016 10:32 am MDT Last Updated May 21, 2016 at 9:00 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Relatives and friends of Salah Abu Laban, Sahar Qouidar, Ghassan Abu Laban and Reem al-Sebaei, all victims of EgyptAir flight 804, which crashed while carrying 66 passengers and crew from Paris to Cairo, grieve following prayers for the dead, at al Thawrah Mosque in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, May 20, 2016. The plane disappeared off radar at 2.45 a.m. local time on Thursday morning, the cause of the crash is unknown. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil) read more

Nominations open for Senate election

The process for nominations of full-time teaching staff and professional librarians to Brock’s 2018-19 Senate is currently underway.Any member of the full-time teaching staff and any professional librarian is eligible to serve on Senate provided they are not on a leave of three months or longer during the academic year.Senate meets regularly from September to May.Nomination forms signed by at least four persons eligible to vote in the election will be due to the Secretary of Senate in the Office of the University Secretariat by Monday, March 12 at 4:30 p.m. Candidates are encouraged to submit a candidate statement of a maximum of 200 words with their nomination. Click here for nomination forms.Electronic voting will begin Monday, March 19 at 8:30 a.m. and will close Monday, March 26 at 4:30 p.m. The full election timeline, including the deadline for nomination papers to be received by the University Secretariat, is available on the Senate Election website.All eligible members are encouraged to consider service on Senate. For more information on Senate and its committees, visit the Senate website or email the Secretary of Senate at read more

Community leaders welcome incoming Brock President

Following Thursday’s announcement of Wendy Cukier being named Brock University’s President-designate, local community leaders offered congratulations and stressed the importance of Brock’s role in Niagara.“Throughout my tenure as President, the community continues to embrace Brock University’s role in education and research, and as an important partner in moving Niagara forward,” said Jack Lightstone, who completes his second and final term as President and Vice-Chancellor on June 30, 2016. “Brock is committed to helping improve the intellectual, cultural and economic growth of our region. I’m confident that our partnership with the community will continue to be a priority under Wendy’s leadership.”Lightstone has led the University through a decade of growth in enrolment, state-of-the-art facilities and reputation. Under his guidance, Brock has evolved into a research-focused comprehensive university with an important and strong, mutually beneficial role in the Niagara community.Brock University has announced the appointment of renowned scholar and Brock alumna Wendy Cukier as its sixth President and Vice-Chancellor.“For many years Brock has been a vital part of our community, providing excellent learning and development opportunities, applied research and support for entrepreneurs. With the new Marilyn I. Walker School downtown and innovative partnerships to support our community’s growth, the City’s relationship with Brock continues to deepen,” said St. Catharines Mayor Walter Sendzik. “Dr. Cukier’s experience in the hi-tech industry, innovation and business are a great fit for Brock as a growing institution and for Niagara’s growing economy. We look forward to welcoming Dr. Cukier back to St. Catharines.”Cukier, PhD, MBA, MA, BA, DU (hon) LLD (hon) M.S.C. will be the first female and first Brock graduate to serve as president. She is currently Vice-President Research and Innovation at Ryerson University in Toronto, is an internationally respected researcher, expert in emerging technology and innovation, and advocate for social justice. She will join Brock as President and Vice-Chancellor on Sept. 1, 2016.“I was delighted to learn who Brock’s next President will be and that she is from Niagara,” said Niagara Falls Mayor Jim Diodati. “Her understanding of the unique character of Niagara Falls and our Region, and her professional success, create a dynamic combination that will benefit Brock and our community. I look forward to working with her in the years ahead.”Thorold Mayor Ted Luciani was happy to learn Cukier is from Niagara and returning home to lead the University. “I am delighted that Brock is following a course in diversity by appointing a female President and Vice-Chancellor and with its recent selection of its first female Chancellor. I am excited the new President is an alumna of Brock, so she will have a good feel for the community,” he said.Welland Mayor Frank Campion said he hopes to meet with Cukier early in her tenure “so that the City of Welland and Brock University can continue and grow the exceptional relationship they currently enjoy.“Moving into 2016, I see our partnership with Brock expanding. The University is a very important part of what makes Welland and Niagara attractive to residents, visitors, students and investors.”Dan Patterson, President of Niagara College, congratulated Cukier for being named Brock’s sixth president.“Brock University and Niagara College both play critical roles in supporting our region. Dr. Cukier’s work at Ryerson has led her to be recognized as a leader in innovation and emerging technologies. We look forward to forging stronger partnerships in support of the region and pathways for our students under Dr. Cukier’s leadership,” he said.Through its Strategic Mandate Agreement with the Province, Brock has committed to being a strong community partner. The University does this through fostering and facilitating an entrepreneurial culture, bringing together research, innovation and commercialization, and creating community partnerships. Some examples of those partnerships include working with nearly 100 not-for-profit community organizations through research taking place in the Jack and Nora Walker Canadian Centre for Lifespan Development, the creation of the Niagara Community Observatory, the ongoing community work taking place at the Brock-Niagara Centre for Health & Well-Being; and the recent opening of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts in downtown St. Catharines.“I want to offer sincere thanks and appreciation to Dr. Jack Lightstone for his leadership and commitment to the St. Catharines-Niagara community during his tenure as President. With his leadership and vision we have created a strong foundation of partnership, innovation and community connection that will continue to help lead Niagara into the future,” Sendzik said.Lightstone congratulated Cukier and welcomed her to the Brock family Thursday, wishing her success as she steers the University into its next phase of development.“Change and renewal are positive and important for universities. New leadership is always an opportunity for development, because it brings new and different strengths and talents into the mix,” Lightstone said. “2016 will be an exciting year for Brock University and the Niagara community.”Reaction from local community leaders was welcoming and hopeful:Alan Caslin, Niagara Regional Chair: “I congratulate Wendy on her appointment as Brock University’s new President and welcome her leadership here in Niagara Region. As a key post-secondary institution and long-standing community partner in our region, Brock University has done an outstanding job of educating the next generation of leaders. I look forward to working with Brock under Wendy’s leadership and building on our shared successes for the betterment of our community.”Mishka Balsom, President and CEO of the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce: “We are glad that someone with Dr. Cukier’s wealth of experience and talent will be filling this very important position. The business community of Niagara has gained much from the efforts of the university and of Dr. Cukier’s predecessor, Dr. Lightstone, who is and has been a highly valued member of the GNCC Board of Directors. We look forward to continuing that strong working relationship with Dr. Cukier. Brock’s activity has been important to the business community of Niagara, especially that of the Goodman School of Business and the BioLinc incubator, the Niagara Community Observatory, and other departments, faculty, staff members and students. Brock has been innovative and responsive when it comes to finding ways to service academic research, the learning experiences of its students, and the needs of Niagara business. The GNCC has partnered with Brock on many projects and events.”Dolores Fabiano, Executive Director of Niagara Falls, Welland/Pelham and Port Colborne-Waintfleet Chambers of Commerce: “I think it is very exciting to be welcoming our first female President. She is already well accomplished and I look forward to working with her. I believe that in 2016 we will begin a new era where all voices are respected and heard. Brock University is a premier resource and partner for all of Niagara and I look forward to that message becoming much louder.”Warren Hoshizaki, Director of Education for the District School Board of Niagara: “We are pleased to learn that Dr. Cukier will become the next President of Brock University. In particular, the DSBN welcomes her impressive record of championing important social justice initiatives as it aligns with much of the work our Board is engaged in. The DSBN’s commitment to equity is seen in its approach to supporting our Aboriginal students in a way that honours their unique culture, language and world view. It is also evident in the Board’s efforts to create opportunities for our first-generation college and university students through the DSBN Academy, for which Brock has provided generous support.”John Crocco, Director of Education for the Niagara Catholic District School Board:  “Niagara Catholic recognizes the excellent leadership of Dr. Lightstone as President of Brock University and the partnerships formed between Niagara Catholic and Brock. I am looking forward to meeting with Dr. Cukier and setting a plan to further enhance the educational, professional development, partnership and leadership opportunities between Niagara Catholic and our local University. Dr. Cukier’s connections to Niagara, combined with her diverse experiences and knowledge, will enrich the opportunities between our leading educational institutions.”Janet St. Amand, Chief Executive Officer of the YMCA of Niagara: “Brock University is one of the great community partners the YMCA relies on to achieve our mission of building a healthier community. As we approach 2016 we look forward to further collaboration with Brock University, one of Canada’s leading academic institutions, providing relevant community research and leadership in Niagara organizations along with a student base ready to tackle the job market and volunteer opportunities.” read more

Matthew Hedges to sue UAE for false imprisonment after spying row

The British academic reunited with his wife on Tuesday after six months in a Gulf jail for spying will attempt to sue his captors for false imprisonment, The Telegraph can disclose. On Twitter, Ms Tejada, 27, posted the first… Matthew Hedges stepped back on to UK soil yesterday morning determined to clear his name. On landing at Heathrow airport, he praised his wife Daniela Tejada for her courage in campaigning tirelessly for his release. “I could not have done this without Daniela, I hear her face is everywhere,” said Mr Hedges. “She is so brave and strong, seeing her and my family after this ordeal is the best thing that could have happened. I thank you all once again, this is very surreal.”

Calls to Samaritans helpline down but people still hurting very much

first_imgCALLS TO THE Samaritans helpline over the last year are down 7.9 per cent on 2012, according to the charity’s 2013 impact report, published today.In total, the helpline received 381,128 calls, with 245,510 of these recorded as dialogue calls.The charity said a significant number of calls do not turn into a dialogue contact as callers will often dial multiple times until they build up the courage to talk or until they “hear the right voice at the end of the line”.Samaritans Ireland has seen a shift in the trend of call times over the last year with the helpline receiving more calls from midnight to 6am than any other time during the day over the past year.Click here for larger imageMidnight to 1am on Friday and Saturday nights were the busiest times of the week and out of hours calls accounted for 68 per cent of all calls to the service.“This – in our experience – is down to the fact that there are now more day-time services and helplines available and as part of our partnership work, many of these divert into Samaritans’ service after hours”, Catherine Brogan, Executive Director of Samaritans Ireland said at the launch of the report today.It highlights the vital need to have a resilient, reliable and available support service round the clock, particularly when other front line services are closed. It’s clear that increasingly, Samaritans is acting as a safety net for all of Ireland’s emotional support services Click here for larger imageStill hurtingAlmost 10,000 people had face to face contact with Samaritans in 2013, which is a 14 per cent increase on last year. While the number of calls received by Samaritans fell by 7 per cent on last year the number of contacts through other mediums increased by 18 per cent.Brogan commented that the fall in the number of calls over the last year was a result of a number of factors.To start with, calls are climbing down from an all-time-high of just over 400,000 in 2010/11 when the impacts of austerity were really begin felt. Some of the decrease in calls could be down to the fact that some people are feeling more hopeful about the future.However she said the charity is acutely aware that “lots of people are still hurting very much”.The issues of most concern to callers in 2013 related to family and relationship problems; depression and mental health issues; loneliness and stress or anxiety. These mirrored the most common issues for callers last year.Tremendous workCommenting on the publication of the report today, Minister of State for Mental Health Kathleen Lynch acknowledged the “tremendous work being delivered by volunteers”.As we approach the Christmas holidays, I know Samaritans’ volunteers are scheduling round-the-clock shifts to make sure they are available to those who need emotional support. That hundreds of people throughout the country give so freely of their time to such an important cause is truly admirableSamaritans Ireland is the longest-serving organisation in the area of emotional support and suicide prevention with 2,000 people volunteering around the country. If you feel like you need to talk to someone, you can contact them on 1850 60 90 90 or email Samaritans report rise in family and financial worries>Read: No concerns for Samaritans confidentiality under Children First bill>last_img read more

Google Music Betas Magnifier helps you discover new music

first_imgThe Amazon Cloud Drive and Google Music Beta are working to carve out their spaces before iCloud is released from its cage. Each service hopes it will have the largest number of users, and Google has just introduced a feature that will hopefully give it an edge in the cloud.Magnifier is Google Music Beta’s newest feature. The search giant is touting Magnifier as “Music Beta’s cousin who lives in England.” Perhaps that needs some explaining.In a post introducing Magnifier, Head of Music Programming Tim Quirk related a time in his childhood when his friend’s English cousin would send over new LPs for them to listen to. That exchange inspired Magnifier, Google’s way to suggest new music to users. Free tracks will be released on a daily basis which you can add to your library as you see fit. The service isn’t relegated solely to songs, though. Live performances and interviews will also be offered.By using Magnifier you may open yourself up to some new artists that would otherwise never have appeared on your radar. That alone makes it worthwhile signing up, alongside the free track every day of course.Google Music Beta and Amazon Cloud Drive both offer bulk storage, but they differ slightly in how much they offer. Google’s service offers a maximum cloud capacity of 20,000 songs for free. Amazon offers tiered plans with a basic 5GB storage option for free all the way up to 1,000GB for $1,000 a year. Apple’s iCloud has iTunes Match which will offer master copies of purchased iTunes songs with a $24.99 per year storage option for non-iTunes content.Which service are you inclined to use?See more at Magnifier via CNetlast_img read more