Computer becomes a bird enthusiast

first_imgIf you’re a bird enthusiast, you can pick out the “chick-a-DEE-dee” song of the Carolina chickadee with just a little practice. But if you’re an environmental scientist faced with parsing thousands of hours of recordings of birdsongs in the lab, you might want to enlist some help from your computer. A new approach to automatic classification of birdsong borrows techniques from human voice recognition software to sort through the sounds of hundreds of species and decides on its own which features make each one unique.Collectors of animal sounds are facing a data deluge. Thanks to cheap digital recording devices that can capture sound for days in the field, “it’s really, really easy to collect sound, but it’s really difficult to analyze it,” say Aaron Rice, a bioacoustics researcher at Cornell University, who was not involved in the new work. His lab has collected 6 million hours of underwater recordings, from which they hope to pick out the signature sounds of various marine mammals.Knowing where and when a certain species is vocalizing might help scientists understand habitat preferences, track their movements or population changes, and recognize when a species is disrupted by human development. But to keep these detailed records, researchers rely on software that can reliably sort through the cacophony they capture in the field. Typically, scientists build one computer program to recognize one species, and then start all over for another species, Rice says. Training a computer to recognize lots of species in one pass is “a challenge that we’re all facing.”Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)That challenge is even bigger in the avian world, says Dan Stowell, a computer scientist at Queen Mary University of London who studied human voice analysis before turning his attention to the treetops. “I realized there are quite a lot of unsolved problems in birdsong,” says Stowell, who is lead author on the new paper. Among the biggest issues: There are hundreds of species with distinct and complex calls—and in tropical hotspots, many of them sing all at once.Most methods for classifying birdsong rely on a human to define which features separate one species from another. For example, if researchers know that a chickadee’s tweet falls within a predictable range of frequencies, they can program a computer to recognize sounds in that range as chickadee-esque. The computer gets better and better at deciding how to use these features to classify a new sound clip, based on “training” rounds where it examines clips with the species already correctly labeled.In the new paper, Stowell and his Queen Mary colleague, computer scientist Mark Plumbley, used a different approach, known as unsupervised training. Instead of telling the computer which features of a birdsong are going to be important, they let it decide for itself, so to speak. The computer has to figure out “what are the jigsaw pieces” that make up any birdsong it hears, Stowell says. For example, some of the jigsaw pieces it selects are split-second upsweeps or downsweeps in frequency—the sharp pitch changes that make up a chirp. After seeing correctly labeled examples of which species produce which kinds of sounds, the program can spit out a list—ranked in order of confidence—of the species it thinks are present in a recording.Stowell and Plumbley tested this approach on several natural recordings, including birdsong from the British Library Sound Archive, and a large data set recorded in Brazil (77 hours; 501 species) that was publicly released as part of an annual classification challenge organized by the Scaled Acoustic BIODiversity platform project. Their unsupervised approach performed better than the more traditional methods of classification—those based on a set of predetermined features—and managed to reach up to 85.4% accuracy in the large Brazilian data set, they report today in PeerJ.The new system’s accuracy fell short of beating the top new computer programs that analyzed the same data sets for the annual competition. But Potamitis Ilyas, a computer scientist at the Technological Educational Institute of Crete in Greece, says that the new system deserves credit for applying unsupervised computer learning to the complex world of birdsong for the first time. He also suggests that this approach could be combined with other ways of processing and classifying sound, because it “can squeeze out some info that other techniques may miss.”Eighty-five percent accuracy on a choice between more than 500 calls and songs is impressive, Rice says, and shows “both the biological community and the computer community what you can do with these large sound archives.” The next step, he says, is to test the technology with new recordings to see if it can hold its own.last_img read more

World Cup 2018: We can’t play without Paul Pogba, says France manager

first_imgBefore the start of France’s 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign, all the talk was about France’s top three of Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele but in the end, it was another man, who came to their rescue.It was Manchester United and France’s talismanic midfielder Paul Pogba, who came to Les Blues’ rescue with a crucial goal against Australia in Kazan on Saturday as France beat Australia 2-1 in the afternoon kick-off.Although he did not put up a scintillating display in midfield, Pogba powered into the box after a couple of one-twos and scored with a slightly deflected lob to earn Les Bleus all three points.It had been rumoured that the Manchester United player could lose his place in the starting line-up at the World Cup after a hit-and-miss season, but France coach Didier Deschamps eventually kept faith in Pogba.”We can’t do without him,” Deschamps had said during the build-up to the World Cup.#FRAAUS #FiersdetreBleus pic.twitter.com/XigVaylmdiEquipe de France (@equipedefrance) June 16, 20182018 FIFA World Cup, Day 3: UpdatesAs Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele failed to have an impact in open play, Pogba, one of only four players with previous World Cup experience, came up with the goods nine minutes from time.According to Griezmann, he even over-delivered, becoming the first French player to score in consecutive World Cups since Michel Platini found the back of the net in 1982 and 1986.”We are not expecting him to score, he needs to keep the ball, and win some balls,” said Griezmann, whose second-half penalty was cancelled out by another penalty from Mile Jedinak.advertisement”On his goal, he was strong, went for a couple of one-twos, that’s what we expect from him.”Pogba was unfazed, admitting he got a little help from Aziz Behich as his shot looped off the shin of the Australia defender before going under the bar.”I was really helped by the defender. But scoring with my ear, my nose, my foot, I don’t care. As long as it’s in, it’s fine,” he said.While he has been largely disappointing at United, Pogba manages to raise his level when he wears the Blue shirt, and Deschamps has an explanation.”I know how to use him,” the coach, who captained France to their only World Cup title on home soil in 1998, told a news conference.”Paul has got a lot of potential, he puts himself in the best position.”A big goal at an important time for @FrenchTeam from @paulpogba #FRAAUS pic.twitter.com/X1JvfoSCcFFIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) June 16, 2018Deschamps’ 4-3-3 system gives Pogba more freedom as the formation features three defensive midfielders.”It suits him very well because he has the freedom to go forward, which he would not be at liberty to do if we were playing with two defensive midfieders,” said Deschamps.France will also face Peru and Denmark in Group C.(With inputs from Reuters)last_img read more

LG Stylo 5 image renders leaked ahead of launch

first_imgLG has maintained a low profile ever since it launched the LG G8 ThinQ and the LG V50 ThinQ at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019. While the company has been gearing to launch a new budget W-series smartphone specfic for its customers in India, it hasn’t been buzzing with details about its future smartphone launches or the availability of its two newly launched smartphones. Not yet at least. But that might be about to change as the image renders of the LG Stylo 5 have leaked online.The new case renders of the LG Stylo 5 come as a courtesy of tipster Sudhanshu Ambhore, who took to Twitter to share the images. According to the images shared by the tipster, the upcoming LG Stylo 5, which is the successor to the LG Stylo 4 that was launched last year and the sibling to the LG Q Stylus series that was launched in India at a price of Rs 21,990, features a design that is quite similar to its predecessor.The LG Stylo 5 – as seen in the image renders – comes with a display that supports on all four sides. The top of the phone – diverging from the trend of having a notch on top — features large bezels that houses the front cameras and the earpiece. There are large bezels on the sides and on the bottom. This design is similar to what we saw in the LG Stylo 4 smartphone. At the back, there is a single rear camera with a flash, which is placed directly above the rear-mounted fingerprint sensor. On the left side of the phone, there are two buttons – presumably to control the volume – and on the right side there is single power button.advertisementJust like the LG Stylo 4, the LG Stylo 5 also comes with a USB Type-C port on the bottom, which is accompanied by a 3.5mm jack and the speaker grille.Notably, the phone was also spotted on the Global Certification Forum website. While the listing didn’t reveal any technical details about the phone, it did reveal that the LG Stylo might might be closer to launch than we expect. However, there is no word from LG on the official launch date yet and so we will have to wait until the company officially unveils the phone to know more about it.ALSO READ: | LG to launch a W-series smartphone with triple rear camera setup exclusive to Amazon in India soonALSO READ: | LG launches Q Stylus+ smartphone with Q Stylus pen in India for Rs 21,990ALSO READ: | LG Q Stylus series launched with Full Vision Display and military grade durabilitylast_img read more

We didn’t bowl badly, Rohit and Agarwal were too good: Keshav Maharaj

first_img Press Trust of India VishakhapatnamOctober 3, 2019UPDATED: October 3, 2019 20:08 IST Keshav Maharaj returned with the figures of 3/189 in 55 overs. (AP Photo)HIGHLIGHTSMaharaj (3/189 in 55 overs) bowled his heart out but did not get the support from the other endIndia put up mammoth 502 for seven in their first inningsMaharaj said the deteriorating pitch was also a reason Indian spinners doing wellSouth African spinners did not bowl badly and it was just sheer brilliance of Rohit Sharma and Mayank Agarwal that has taken the game away from the visitors, lead Proteas tweaker Keshav Maharaj said here on Thursday.Left-arm spinner Maharaj (3/189 in 55 overs) bowled his heart out but did not get the support from the other end in Dane Piedt (107/1 in 19 overs) or debutant Senuran Muthusamy (63/1 in 15 lovers), who did take the prized wicket of Virat Kohli.”I wouldn’t say they bowled poorly. I personally judge if someone comes down the wicket and hits you, it’s not a bad ball. If you are getting hit from the crease, if you are getting cut, then it’s a different story,” said Maharaj, after day two of the first Test.”Piedt was unlucky. Mayank played superbly well and so did Rohit. Literally everything they wanted to do paid off, it was their day. I wouldn’t look too much if they bowled badly or anything. Sen is an all-rounder, a batting all-rounder, so his contribution in his first Test went pretty well, especially in tough conditions,” he said.India won the toss and had no hesitation in batting first. The hosts put up mammoth 502 for seven in their first innings. In response, South Africa were 39 for three at stumps.”I suppose the toss does play a part because you want the best possible conditions to bowl for the spinners but having said that, we could have been a little bit better at times when we did bowl.advertisement”But I suppose the toss does play a large factor in terms of the outcome of the game. But we still have a task at hand in terms of the bat as long as possible and try and come close to the target if possible,” said Maharaj.India spinners bowled faster than their South African counterparts and got more purchase out of the surface. Maharaj said the deteriorating pitch was also a reason Indian spinners doing well.”I also think the deterioration also plays a massive factor in terms of the pace of the ball. Obviously, with the wicket not spinning, you try to beat the batsman through the air and maybe slow it to get some assistance.”Maybe, the odd faster ball might grip. But yeah, the deterioration of the wicket does play a pivotal factor in terms of the speeds that you do play.Also Read | India vs South Africa: Ashwin, Jadeja rock South Africa after Mayank Agarwal 215Also See:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. 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 Posted bySaurabh Kumar Tags :Follow India vs South AfricaFollow Keshav Maharaj Next We didn’t bowl badly, Rohit and Agarwal were too good: Keshav MaharajRohit Sharma and Mayank Agarwal became only the third Indian opening pair after Vinoo Mankad and Pankaj Roy and Rahul Dravid and Virender Sehwag to post 300-plus stand for the 1st wicket in Tests.advertisementlast_img read more

Gov’t Implements 5-Year Plan to Tackle Non-Communicable Diseases

first_imgStory Highlights The Ministry of Health has implemented a five-year strategic plan aimed at tackling the prevalence of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in Jamaica.Portfolio Minister, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson, said the plan will address the four major conditions causing death and illness among Jamaicans, namely cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and chronic respiratory disease.He said the programme will also tackle the four major risk factors for NCDs, which are physical inactivity, unhealthy eating, harmful use of alcohol, and tobacco use.Dr. Ferguson, who was speaking at the launch of the Jamaica National Building Society’s (JNBS) Wellfest Family Fair 2013 on October 25, at the institution’s headquarters in St. Andrew, said the government will continue to place great emphasis on the reduction of NCDs in Jamaica, noting that the problem poses a threat to national development.NCDs such as diabetes, hypertension, heart conditions and cancer, account for some 36 million deaths each year globally, and are the leading cause of death and illness in Jamaica. Statistics show that in 2009, NCDs accounted for approximately 60 per cent of deaths among men and 75 per cent of deaths among women.“What is of great concern is that more and more people are developing these conditions at a much younger age, because of unhealthy lifestyle choices. As policy makers, we have to put strategies in place to combat the incidence of these debilitating illnesses to improve the health of our population,” he stated.Dr. Ferguson said a “whole society approach” is needed to tackle the problem, including Government, civil society and the private sector.“The aim of the Ministry is to build alliances with various groups to promote physical, mental, social and spiritual well being, which will enhance the quality of life of the Jamaican people by empowering individuals and communities to make good decisions for their health,” he remarked.He therefore welcomed the JNBS’ Wellfest Family Fair, noting that the event is in line with the objectives of the Ministry, as it recognises the critical importance of health in facilitating the general wellbeing of any society.“We welcome partnerships like these as the Government alone is unable to address all the health needs of the population,” he remarked.Executive, Business Development and Research, JNBS, Dr. Dana Morris Dixon, said it is critical that the organisation not only encourages its staff to emphasise wellness as a daily part of their lives, but that measures are put in place to facilitate this approach.She said that Wellfest 2013 is just one of the many initiatives geared at encouraging staff to develop good health practices and to make wellness a focal point in their lives and that of their families.The JN Group Wellfest 2013 will be held on Saturday, November 16 on the grounds of Jamaica College, Hope Road, St. Andrew, under the theme: ‘Your Health, Your Wealth…Lifetime Investments’.Those in attendance will benefit from health screenings and consultations, as well as the opportunity to dialogue with suppliers and service providers in the health and wellness sector.There will also be three seminars focusing on financial wellness; diabetes prevention and care; and the health risks of smoking. Dr. Ferguson said a “whole society approach” is needed to tackle the problem. The plan will address the four major conditions causing death and illness among Jamaicans. The programme will also tackle the four major risk factors for NCDs.last_img read more

Foreign Shipowners Encourage China to Resolve VAT Problems

first_imgzoom The Chairman of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), Mr Masamichi Morooka, has written to the Chinese Minister of Finance, encouraging the Chinese Government to continue its efforts to find a solution to the problems created by the application of Value Added Tax (VAT), since 1 August, to the transport and logistics services provided by ‘Wholly Foreign Owned Shipping Companies’.The problems exist because it is much harder for foreign shipping lines – as opposed to Chinese companies – to reclaim the 6% VAT (and a 0.8% VAT surcharge on ocean freight) that is now collected by shipping agencies in China, and so avoid passing this on to their overseas customers. The unintended consequence is that foreign carriers are being placed at a competitive disadvantage to Chinese shipping companies.One of the reported impacts is that hundreds of millions of dollars of shipping contracts with foreign shipowners that are normally concluded in China are now being concluded in other jurisdictions where the new VAT rules do not apply.ICS – which represents the world’s national shipowner’s associations and over 80% of the world merchant fleet – has emphasised to the Ministry of Finance the great importance that is attached by the international shipping industry to the successful resolution of VAT issues that have been raised by foreign shipping companies which collectively transport a very significant proportion of China’s international trade.ICS Director of External Relations, Simon Bennett, explained “The Chinese Government is deeply conscious of its commitments towards the maintenance of a ‘level playing field’ in maritime services, and has no wish for the new arrangements concerning the application of VAT to international shipping services to have a negative impact on the competitiveness of Chinese exports, the vast majority of which is carried by ships. We have therefore welcomed the positive indications that have been given by the Chinese authorities during recent meetings with foreign shipping company representatives in Beijing that steps are being taken to address those concerns.”He added “However, these issues are very complex and we recognise the major challenge for the State Administration of Taxation in trying to find a solution for international shipping that will be consistent with China’s broader objectives as it seeks to move towards a system of VAT in other parts of the Chinese economy.”ICS, October 31, 2013last_img read more

Ningbo Ocean Shipping Orders Boxship Quartet

first_imgzoom China’s Ningbo Ocean Shipping Co., part of Ningbo Port Group, has ordered four 1,000 TEU container ships from compatriot Taizhou Kouan Shipbuilding.The 12,200 dwt vessels will be 139 meters long, 25 meters wide, and have a draft of 8 meters.They will sail at speeds of up to 14 knots.The first of four boxships is scheduled for delivery in February 2017, the shipbuilder said, without specifying any financial details.The vessels will be classed by the China Classification Society (CSS).World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

Meriaura Adds First EcoCoaster

first_imgzoom Finnish shipping company Meriaura has taken delivery of M/S Eeva VG, the first of two VG EcoCoaster general cargo vessels ordered from Dutch shipbuilder Royal Bodewes.The 5,000-ton vessel arrived for the first time in Finland on October 4, 2016. It was baptized in the port of Rauma on October 5, where it loaded its first cargo, 4,000 tons of oats, for Rotterdam.Featuring a length of 103 meters and a width of 13.6 meters, the Eeva VG is a dry cargo ship with Ice Class 1A.VG EcoCoaster is designed to cause less environmental impact than dry cargo vessels of same type and size, according to the company. The hull and machinery are optimized to the speed of 10,5 knots in open water conditions. Additional power required for fulfilling Ice Class 1A requirements is achieved by a diesel electric-driven booster unit.The vessels are equipped with a dual fuel system, where the main engine is suitable for both biofuel and marine gas oil (MGO).“Although the vessels are traditional dry cargo bulkers, they represent a new generation because of their environmental friendliness and energy efficiency,” Jussi Mälkiä, Chairman of Meriaura Group, said.The contract for the two newbuildings was signed in Turku in December 2014 when Meriaura revealed its plans to regenerate its fleet with vessels that have lower fuel consumption and GHG emissions.The Eeva VG is a supplement to Meriaura’s fleet of 17 vessels. Its sister ship, the Mirva VG, is expected to be completed by the end of November this year.last_img read more

New Provincial Exhibition Commission Act Focuses on Accountability Sustainability

first_img “I want to thank the interim board for its hard work over the past year to start change at the exhibition. The members’ time was volunteered and that speaks volumes about their commitment to ensuring this valuable provincial institution is able to be put on a sustainable path,” said Mr. Colwell. The legislation will also require the commission to produce an annual business plan and report regularly on its financial performance. Government will also be able to ask the provincial auditor general to audit the commission in the future. “The long-term goal is to ensure the Nova Scotia Provincial Exhibition operates in a sustainable manner and contributes to the success of our agricultural industry in Nova Scotia,” said Mr. Colwell. The full report by KPMG is available at http://www.novascotia.ca/agri/ . a representative from the agricultural community a member from the harness racing industry three members-at-large from the business community a non-voting staff representative from the Department of Agriculture The Nova Scotia Provincial Exhibition Commission will have a stronger and more accountable governance structure that focuses on its sustainability. Agriculture Minister Keith Colwell introduced new legislation today, May 4, to create a new board structure and clarify the commission’s corporate objectives. “This legislation creates a more accountable governance structure for the exhibition that positions it to grow the success of events, generate more income to reinvest in the facility and ensure a stable path going forward,” said Mr. Colwell. The changes respond to recommendations in an operational review by KPMG to tighten financial controls and accountability of the commission. The proposed new board will meet the challenges facing the Nova Scotia Provincial Exhibition and ensure its long-term viability. The new commission board will include:last_img read more

Preliminary hearing into death of Inuk woman wraps in Halifax

first_imgAPTN National NewsA week-long preliminary hearing into the killing of an Inuk woman wrapped up in Halifax today.Victoria Henneberry and Blake Leggette are charged with first-degree murder in the death of Loretta Saunders.APTN’s Trina Roache has all the details.last_img

Harper government taking 6 First Nations to court for not posting finances

first_imgAPTN National News OTTAWA – The federal government says it is launching court proceedings to force six defiant First Nations to publicly post their financial information online.Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt says his department will continue to withhold non-essential funding from almost 50 First Nations that failed to meet the deadline for a new Conservative transparency law.But the government is also asking the Federal Court to force six First Nations in Alberta and Saskatchewan to publish audited financial statements and the salaries and expenses of their chiefs and band council members.“First Nations, like all Canadians, deserve transparency and accountability from their elected leaders. That is why we passed the First Nations Financial Transparency Act which empowers First Nation members to ensure band revenues areused for the benefit of the entire community,” said Valcourt.Leaders of the six bands have flatly stated they will not be complying with the new rules.The Onion Lake Cree Nation – one of the groups the government is taking to court – had already launched its own Federal Court bid late last month in an effort to overturn the Conservative transparency law.Valcourt says forcing First Nations to publish financial information will lead to more effective, transparent and accountable governance, while aboriginal leaders say the new rules are a sideshow designed to distract attention from chronic government underfunding.Thunderchild, Ochapowace, Sawbridge, Cold Lake and Athabasca Chipewyan are the other communities.– with files from The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Security Council backs UN plan to help East Timor when it gains

In a presidential statement read out in a formal meeting by Brian Cowan, the Foreign Minister of Ireland, which holds the presidency of the 15-member body for the month of October, the Council agreed with Mr. Annan’s assessment that the UN should remain engaged in East Timor to protect the major achievements so far of the UN Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET), to build on those accomplishments and to help the East Timorese government in ensuring security and stability.The Council concurred that a new UN mission should be based on the premise that operational responsibilities should be gradually handed over to East Timorese authorities as soon as it was feasible, and supported a continuing process of assessment and downsizing of the UN presence over a period of two years.The Council also backed the recommendation by East Timor’s Constituent Assembly that independence be declared on 20 May 2002. Before the Council began its discussion, it held a private teleconference this morning with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who is in Geneva, on the situation in East Timor as well as his proposals for a mission to succeed UNTAET.At the outset of the open debate, UNTAET chief Sergio Vieira de Mello briefed the Council on the Secretary-General’s plan for a UN presence in East Timor post-independence, pointing out that the proposed date was exactly 200 days away. The successor mission to UNTAET, Mr. Vieira de Mello said, would focus on the security of the new nation. Upon independence, internal security would continue to be the primary responsibility of the international civilian police, with increasing involvement from the national police service. Meanwhile, the military component should number some 5,000 personnel, down 44 per cent from current strength, in order to ensure effective border security pending the development of East Timor’s own defence force.Mr. Vieira de Mello also warned that as Timorese took greater control over their governance, any precipitous reduction in government services should be avoided, and a minimum degree of support was needed to ensure that the new government did not falter. Despite progress toward independence, he stressed, the “job we have all set out to do is not yet done.”Today’s meeting also featured the Chief Minister of the Second Transitional Government of East Timor, Mari Alkatiri, and officials from the World Bank and UN Development Programme (UNDP). Speakers from more than 50 delegations took the floor during the discussion to express their support for UNTAET and the UN’s efforts in East Timor. read more

Wrestling Tom Ryan eyes more dual meet emphasis in NCAA

Ohio State wrestling coach Tom Ryan addresses his team after the Buckeyes’ practice on Oct. 20. Credit: Jeff Helfrich | Lantern ReporterThe television outside of Tom Ryan’s office is often set to ESPN. Inevitably, he walks by a lot of College Football Playoff talk on the sports network. And every time he hears it, he can only think of one thing — a college wrestling playoff. This idea has been more than a thought in the mind of Ohio State’s wrestling coach. Ryan has pushed for a stand-alone, dual-meet championship tournament in the NCAA, among other things. He’s even a member of the Blue Ribbon Task Force committee, which is dedicated to developing a long-term plan for NCAA wrestling. The Blue Ribbon Task Force includes members such as North Carolina State Athletic Director Debbie Yow, NCAA executive vice president of regulatory affairs Oliver Luck and Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby. The task force was formed by the National Wrestling Coaches Association. “We’ve got some big dogs involved,” Ryan said. “And they all like the sport and they all see the value in wanting to move in this direction. And because they’re involved now, things can happen.”There is currently a proposal, unanimously approved by the committee, in the works that would change college wrestling to a one-semester sport that starts during December and would end about six weeks later than usual with a dual-meet tournament. The current individual championships would stay in March. The NCAA has yet to sign off on the proposal. Ryan’s reasoning for the change stems from the idea that dual meets are more fan-friendly than longer individual tournaments. He wants to attract more interest in his sport. “I think it’s spectator-friendly,” Ryan said. “An hour and a half, an hour and 45 minutes is way better than three days in a gym, or tournaments two days in a gym. I think it’s substantially more team-oriented. I think team sports are sports that our culture follows. I think it’s important for the sport of wrestling that we value the team aspect as much as the superstar aspect.”Ohio State has experience balancing individual success with team success. The Buckeyes won a team national championship in 2015 and their current roster is home to former individual national champions and an Olympic champion in heavyweight Kyle Snyder. Ryan said the proposed changes would place importance on more wrestlers in his program, due to the fact that dual-meet wins and losses would count more in preparation for a dual-meet tournament. “I think it would add more value to more people,” Ryan said. “Because, right now if you lose a dual meet, it doesn’t hurt your chance to win the national tournament. And because of that, you’re hesitant to put all your guys in when they may be banged up or not. So, because of that, it brings less value to your guys in the room.”Ryan said most of the opposition that the proposal faces involves the timing and scheduling of the hypothetical events. He said there also are differing viewpoints on how teams would be chosen for a dual-meet tournament and how many teams would be involved. The ability of wrestlers to maintain their peak performance for an entire season is also up for discussion. Redshirt senior Nathan Tomasello seemed to be all for the proposed changes. He placed value on the ability of dual meets to attract new, casual fans to the sport. “I think it’s important to make it more of a team sport and easier to follow,” Tomasello said. “If you don’t really know wrestling that well, it’s tough to follow how people get points at national tournaments.” Ryan said wrestling is one of the few collegiate sports that actually succeeds as a business model with ticket sales, and that gives the NCAA incentive to retool the sport and maximize profit. A dual meet at the Schottenstein Center between Ohio State and Penn State drew an attendance of 15,338 just last season. Ryan drew a comparison to Ohio State football fans tuning in to Saturday’s game between Penn State and Michigan because of a vested interest in the sport and the outcome of the game. That type of heightened interest is what he desires for the sport of wrestling. “We don’t have that in wrestling,” Ryan said. “And we need it. And until we get it, we’ll continue to be a sport that’s kind of status quo instead of one that’s thriving.” read more

Myth of the elderly early risers Pensioners need just as much sleep

first_imgChanges in sleep quality start as early as the mid-thirties, the review found – well before participants noticed a shift to an “early-to-bed-early-to-rise” schedule or reported waking more often in the night.And problems were worse in men. Those struggling with sleep problems should follow standard “sleep hygiene” advice, researchers said.This included avoiding coffee from late afternoon onwards, cutting out alcohol, and keeping a regular sleep diary to see what differences changes in habits could make.But they said none of the measures could stop the impact of age-related sleep changes, warning against reliance on sleeping pills, which sedate brains, rather than restoring youthful sleep patterns.Researchers said the problem had “flown under the radar” in much sleep research because older people were so used to being short of sleep. But electrical patterns in the brain and chemical markers of sleep deprivation were clear, they concluded.Prof Walker said more effort was needed to tacke the problem, because sleep deprivation takes such a toll on health.”Every one of the major diseases that are killing us in first-world nations -from diabetes to obesity to Alzheimer’s disease to cancer – all of those things now have strong causal links to a lack of sleep. And all of those diseases significantly increase in likelihood the older that we get, and especially in dementia,” he said.”Sleep decline is one of the most dramatic physiological changes that occurs as we age, yet that demonstrable change is not part of the health conversation today,” the sleep scientist said. It is a myth that people need less sleep as they get older – they just struggle to get it, new research suggests.The review by the University of California found that the ageing process restricts the abilty to produce deep restorative sleep, leaving middle aged and pensioners sleep-deprived – and at greater risk of illnesses, including Alzheimer’s disease.It is often said that people need less sleep after they hit middle age, with many older people rising earlier.But the research found that in fact, the quality of sleep older people received was dramatically lower, with brain scans showing disrupted electrical patterns, and changes which are associated with sleep deprivation.As the brain ages, the neurons and circuits in the area that regulate sleep slowly degrade, resulting in a decreased amount of deep sleep, experts said.This is particularly crucial because lack of such – non-REM (dreamless) sleep is associated with memory and cognition, and linked to conditions including Alzheimer’s disease and cancer.”Sleep changes with aging, but it doesn’t just change with aging; it can also start to explain aging itself,” said co-author Matthew Walker, who leads the Sleep and Neuroimaging Laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley.The review examined whether older people need less sleep, as had long been argued, or whether they are actually unable to generate sleep that they badly needed – before concluding that in fact, that sleep deprivation is a common side-effect of ageing.”The evidence seems to favor one side – older adults do not have a reduced sleep need, but instead, an impaired ability to generate sleep. The elderly therefore suffer from an unmet sleep need,” Prof Walker said. “We need to recognize the causal contribution of sleep disruption in the physical and mental deterioration that underlies aging and dementia. More attention needs to be paid to the diagnosis and treatment of sleep disturbance if we are going to extend healthspan, and not just lifespan.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Is your Greek property on forestland

first_imgThe Greek Government has recently introduced NEW forest maps for 33 different areas throughout Greece including the Prefectures of Arcadia, Laconia, Messenia, Chios and Kerkira just to name a few. The purpose of developing forestry maps is to accurately record forests and forestland throughout the country. Maps are formed by recording existing forests and forestland, areas that were once deforested and/or altered and areas that were reforested and/or forested in the meantime. These maps are necessary for the Greek Government not only to protect its natural environment, but also to secure property rights and ownership titles in cooperation with the Hellenic Cadastre.How do I protect my Greek property? Check your property. Owners can verify if their Greek property has been identified as forest or non-forestland by navigating the search engine of the Hellenic Cadastre. Don’t be surprised if your patriko or olive grove in your hometown village has been identified as forestry land like my mother’s has in the rural area of Arcadia. If your property has been falsely identified as forestland whereas it is not, you are lawfully entitled to submit objections for this property. As the law stands up-to-date, applications for objections are filed 15 days after the issuing of the specific forest map of interest. The deadline is 60 days after that date for Greek citizens and 80 days for owners residing abroad. To properly submit your objections, you will need an accurate and updated land survey, an issue we have stressed on repeatedly in past newsletters, in our Article Series first published in 2014 and our first Greek Property U.S. Workshops in 2014 in Chicago. *Katerina Sirouni is an Architect and Greek Property Manager Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Bald Eagle Rescued in Missouri May Have Ingested Poison

first_img Watch: Dolphin Leaps Feet Away From Unsuspecting SurferWatch: Deep-Sea Octopus ‘Billows Like a Circus Tent’ Stay on target A bald eagle found entangled in a wire fence earlier this week may have ingested poison used to kill rodents, according to officials at a Missouri zoo where the eagle is being treated.The bird was discovered caught in a fence in Greene County, Missouri, and rescued by Missouri Department of Conservation agent Josh Widsom, who brought the eagle to Dickerson Park Zoo for examination, reported KSDK.Veterinarians from the zoo are currently treating the eagle with vitamin K therapy, fluids and anti-inflammatory medicine, according to zoo spokeswoman Joey Powell.“The bird is very weak,” Powell told the Springfield News-Leader. “Normally an eagle is pretty powerful and alert, but this one is not.”Josh Wisdom of the Missouri Dept. of Conservation rescued the eagle and brought it to Dickerson Park Zoo in Springfield. (Photo Credit: Missouri Dept. of Conservation/Facebook)Zoo vets suspect the eagle may have ingested rodenticide, or poison for rodents. They noted, however, that it’s possible the eagle could be suffering from lead poisoning. Lead poisoning in eagles can occur after the animal eats another bird that has been shot with lead pellets, the News-Leader reported.Wisdom said he responded to a call from a landowner reporting an eagle trapped in a fence on Tuesday.“He said he saw it near the road and it had flown across his property and then got tangled in the fence,” Wisdom told the newspaper. “It’s a full-grown eagle weighing 10 pounds.”Wisdom said got the bird to grab one of his gloved-hands with its talons while he grabbed the eagle’s other foot and carefully pulled the bird free from the fence.Zoo officials are hoping the bird would respond to therapy for the potential poisoning. According to Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine vitamin K therapy can “reverse the anticoagulant effect of rodenticides over a period of 24 to 48 hours from initiation of therapy.”Zoo spokeswoman Powell said if the eagle survives, it likely will become one of many raptors the zoo has rehabilitated and eventually released into the wild.More on Geek.com:Watch: Eagle Wears Go-Pro, Soars Across Packed Soccer StadiumPython Found Covered With More Than 500 Ticks Treated for AnemiaWatch: Spiders ‘Rain’ Down on Brazilian Townlast_img read more

Florida Panthers hockey team helps panthers at Zoo Miami

first_imgMIAMI (WSVN) – The Florida Panthers hockey team is helping panthers at Zoo Miami by contributing funds for a specialized rehabilitation crate.Mahala is Zoo Miami’s resident panther. She was brought there in an old, heavy crate after being orphaned when her family was hit by a car and killed.After two years, Mahala is ready to be reintroduced to the wild. But she needed a new form of transportation, and the Florida Panthers Community Champions Grant Program was happy to help.“The need was for this very specialized crate — light weight, aluminum crate, great ventilation, custom handles,” said Ron Magill, Zoo Miami’s spokesperson, “everything designed specifically to transport these panthers as quickly as possible from the point that they’re found to the point where they can be rehabilitated.”“We’re excited that this grant actually from last season is being used to build this crate — the crate’s that’s gonna be helping to rehabilitate and catch panthers, so that they can do that in a safer way,” said Lauren Slaurensimone, Executive Director of the Panthers’ foundation.The crate will be given to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to safely transport sick or injured panthers. Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

People on the Move 8113

first_imgHearst Magazines announced that Kristine Welker has been named vice president, publisher and chief revenue officer of the company’s new pilot magazine collaboration with Dr. Mehmet Oz.Todd Haskell has been hired to fill Welker’s former position as senior vice president and chief revenue officer of Hearst Magazines Digital Media. He had been vice president of advertising at The New York Times.Andrew Lack has been named chairman at Bloomberg Media Group. He had been CEO there.Bloomberg Media Group also announced that Justin Smith would take over Lack’s position as CEO. He had been president at Atlantic Media. Cosmopolitan has hired Shiona Turini as fashion market director. Previously Turini served as the fashion market and beauty director at CR Fashion Book.Kalmback Publishing Co. announced the promotion and new hiring of four staff members.•    Mark Savage has been promoted to associate publisher with oversight of five Kalmbach titles: American Snowmobiler, Classic Toy Trains, FineScale Modeler, Scale Auto.•    Mark Boncher has been promoted to editor of American Snowmobiler.•    Naomi Fujimoto has been named the new editor of Bead Style magazine.•    Sandy Zwick has joined Kalmbach as the manager of the newly formed Creative Services department. Prior to joining Kalmbach, Zwick was the Creative Services Manager for QBE North America in Sun Prairie.Daniel Goldblatt has been named managing editor at Variety.com. He had been producer/coordinating producer at TMZ.National Journal’s managing editor for politics, Josh Kraushaar, has been promoted to editor-in-chief of National Journal’s Hotline.Melissa Kramer has been named fashion director at ESSENCE. She had been creative director and producer at UPTOWN.Luxe Interiors + Design announced that Mimi Faucett will be joining the editorial team as market editor. Prior to joining Luxe, Faucett was the market assistant at Traditional Home.Meredith Corporation has announced several promotions within the National Media Group.•    Christine Guilfoyle has been promoted to VP/group publisher. As part of her expanded position, Guilfoyle will add responsibility for Meredith’s newest title, Allrecipes magazine, which will be launching this fall.•    Linda Fears has been named VP/editor-in-chief of Family Circle. The promotion follows her eight-year role as editor-in-chief of the brand. Fears will also continue as editorial director of Meredith’s Food Content Center of Excellence.•    Cheryl Brown has been named editor-in-chief of Allrecipes magazine. Most recently, Brown served as editorial director of Recipe.com.•    Britta Cleveland has been promoted to SVP, Research Solutions. Cleveland joined Meredith in 2004, and most recently served as VP, Research Solutions.Michelle Lee Ribeiro has been named editor and project director of custom content at Palm Beach Media Group. She will oversee content and production for the eight custom resort and club publications.PGOA Media has appointed Andrew Becks to the newly-created position of vice president of audience development. Previously Becks was director of audience development at Scripps Network.Sabine Feldmann has been appointed associate publisher at Glamour. She was previously publisher at More, Shape group publisher/chief brand officer and publisher at Teen Vogue.Hanley Wood announced the appointment of Paul Silva as editorial director, Pool Group. Silva joins Hanley Wood from The Beach Reporter and PALOS Verdes Peninsula News, where he held roles as reporter, managing editor and most recently served as executive editor.Erika Taylor, former editorial director, Pool Group at Hanley Wood, is going to become of editor in chief of Aquatics International.Gail Reitenbach has been promoted to editor of TradeFair Group’s POWER magazine after 11 years as managing editor.Owen Phillips is leaving his post as executive editor at The Hollywood Reporter to work on a start-up and consulting projects in entertainment and digital media with Jeff Stern’s Alegra Enterprises in Santa Monica, CA. Previously, Phillips helped launched The Wall Street Journal’s weekend magazine WSJ. as its deputy editor.last_img read more