Postnups growing in popularity say lawyers who share insight into the agreements

first_imgTORONTO — When Canadian heart throb Justin Bieber secretly married model Hailey Baldwin last year, tabloids said they didn’t bother with a fancy ceremony or a pre-nuptial agreement to protect their millions.“He was an idiot not to get a (pre-nup), but we have seen Justin do a lot of stupid stuff,” joked Farrah Kohorst, a Calgary-based lawyer specializing in family law.But according to Kohorst, 24-year-old Bieber — estimated to be worth $265 million — and 22-year-old Baldwin — rumoured to be worth $3 million — aren’t out of ways to keep their future earnings protected from each other, if they desire.Kohorst and other experts say the key to safeguarding assets when you didn’t sign a pre-nup lies in a little-known agreement that is growing in popularity: a post-nup.Often called a marriage contract under the Family Law Act, a post-nup can be signed before or after a wedding and can include clauses to decide what will happen to money, real estate, inheritances and pets if a marriage is dissolved.Kohorst and other lawyers say most people are prompted to sign a post-nuptial agreement at the behest of their parents or because they want to embark on a financial venture their spouse isn’t keen on sharing the risk for, they suddenly snag a large inheritance or gift they want to keep from their partner or they simply ran out of time to draw up a pre-nup while preparing for their big day.“I did one recently where the husband found out about a bunch of debt the wife had run up and he wanted nothing to do with that because it wasn’t disclosed to him,” said Kohorst.“I really pump these to my friends and family because we are looking at 40 per cent divorce rate and 60 per cent common-law breakdown (in Canada).”She often recommends couples who are trying to figure out what to put in a post-nup focus on their goals and think about whether children, new businesses or windfalls are headed their way. If someone agrees to waive their spousal support and not share property that is jointly held, Kohorst often suggests a settlement where the amount of money they receive for the dissolution of their marriage is based on the length of the relationship or is a portion of the net value of their assets.She also advises clients to look out for conduct provisions — clauses surrounding infidelity, weight gain and a minimum number of times a week or month a spouse has to agree to sex. They’re popular in the U.S., but are usually frowned upon and often not relevant to legal rights in Canada, she adds.Kohorst also said most clients don’t realize post-nups aren’t boilerplate documents that can be drawn up in a few days on the cheap. Most take more than one meeting and require several financial disclosures.“There is a difference between marrying somebody you think is worth $1 million, when they are really worth $50 million,” she said. “You might get a different deal.”In rush scenarios, Kohorst has seen post-nups come together in six to eight weeks and in situations with prominent families with plenty to protect, she’s charged up to $60,000 to represent her client.However, most people will spend a few thousand dollars for agreements that take three to four months to draw up.Kohorst pushes her clients to avoid signing them the same month as their wedding because if one is signed too close to the wedding, it can later be argued the agreement was made under duress. If clients insist, she adds a clause noting both parties agree they are not committing to the agreement under duress.Rick Peticca, a Toronto-based senior associate specializing in family law, said he recommends post-nups when clients are keen on getting a pre-nup but have six months or less until their wedding, putting themselves in a danger zone for duress arguments.He suggests signing an agreement well before the six-month mark to avoid those troubles and make use of negotiating advantages you have before tying the knot.“You have an option not to proceed with the wedding,” he said. “You lose that leverage after the wedding has occurred.”He has also seen people pursuing post-nups long after their marriage began in hopes of using the agreements as a “security blanket” against situations that recently arose.“I have a case right now where my client’s spouse was unfaithful and while they work things out, they want something in place,” he said, noting that post-nups should be made to fit each person’s unique situation and concerns.“Before someone just agrees to anything they really need to think of the consequences. It’s not just trying to satisfy your partner. There are real life consequences, so they need to ensure their views are properly reflected.”Tara Deschamps, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Palestinian Activist Ahed Tamimi to Remain in Prison until Trial

Rabat – The voice of Palestinian resistance in the occupied West Bank, Ahed Tamimi, and her mother will remain in custody until trial, ruled an Israeli court today.Tamimi, 16, was arrested after a video posted by the Israeli police, showing her defying Israeli soldiers. Both she and her cousin appeared kicking and pushing two armed soldiers from her family’s front yard.In early January, Tamimi received 12 charges, including “assault” and “incitement.” She now faces months in custody before the judge pronounces her sentence. “The gravity of the offences of which she is accused does not allow an alternative to custody,” her judge said.Tamimi’s next hearing is scheduled for January 31, the day of her 17th birthday.“The court said that because she is so dangerous there is no possibility of bail,” her lawyer, Gaby Lasky reportedly told the Guardian.Israel remains the only country in the world that prosecutes children in military courts, the Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCIP) rights group told Al Jazeera.Human rights organizations and the European Union have condemned the arrest of teenager.A day after her arrest, Ahed’s mother, Nariman, was also arrested when she went to visit her daughter at an Israeli police station and requested to be present during the her daughter’s interrogation.Nariman is also charged with “assault” and “incitement” for uploading the video to social media.The Tamimi family started documenting the Israeli occupation in 2009.Ahed Tamimi has shown more strength and resistance than all Arab leaders combined #???_??????? pic.twitter.com/EMhasOAPmn— Fatima (@fatimalmahmoud) December 19, 2017A skinnier, younger Ahed first attracted global attention in a viral video in 2012, when she was featured shaking her fist at an Israeli soldier, demanding to know why her brother was detained. Since then, she appeared several times on camera, bravely defying Israeli occupation. read more

Citing lack of progress UN envoy urges Israelis and Palestinians to step

“There is no more sobering a manifestation of such a risk than the financial and economic crisis currently afflicting the Palestinian Authority (PA),” Robert Serry said in his briefing to the Security Council.Describing the Authority’s fiscal situation as “very grave,” Mr. Serry stated that despite Prime Minister Salam Fayyad’s commendable efforts, he is confronted with the effects of a decrease in foreign aid, the failure of donor countries to fulfil their financial pledges and slowing economic activity.As an immediate step to ensure the Authority’s fiscal viability in the short-term, he urgently called on donors to increase their contributions and provide the needed funds to timely finance the current gap. The Israeli Government is also called on to do more to alleviate the Authority’s burden and provide the much-needed economic impetus in the medium-term.Amidst a fiscal crisis and related social unrest in the West Bank, the stakes are growing, said the envoy. “The main obstacles remain political: the unresolved issues between the parties, the continued occupation and the ongoing Palestinian divide.“But we can no longer simply count on the pursuit of short-term mutual confidence-building measures aimed at starting talks. Such measures are not alternatives for a negotiated peace.”Developments on the ground also do not support efforts to overcome the political stalemate, Mr. Serry said, noting ongoing settlement activity, both settler and Palestinian violence, Israeli military operations in the West Bank, and rocket attacks from Gaza.He said that in a “volatile and rapidly changing” region, the vision of the two-State solution and the achievements of the Palestinian Authority are elements of stability and progress that should not be lost but rather maintained and realized in full without further delay. “For one, this means nothing short of unequivocal support by the international community for the PA and collective intensified efforts to address the fiscal difficulties presently faced and preserve the institutional gains made to date.“Israel also has a special responsibility and interest in ensuring the PA’s viability,” Mr. Serry added. “It is now even more important for the parties to further engage in positive steps, show restraint, and refrain from provocative acts that risk inflaming an already delicate environment.”He added that Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon sincerely hopes that the Quartet – comprising the European Union, Russia, the United States and the UN – in consultation with the parties, will chart a credible political way ahead in the coming months. read more

Database Analyst

Purpose of the Post:To carry out Microsoft SQL Server database processing, reporting and administration for automotive databases, including “Motorparc” (vehicles in use), “Anonymised” (new, used and vehicles in use) and MOT data.To create and run reports for customers and stakeholders.To carry out linking of SMMT data to other data sets, including DVLA model codes and insurance group rating (Thatcham / code44).To develop new reporting services and help generate additional income.To build and maintain knowledge of the underlying data and processes and to create/maintain documentation accordingly.To develop an understanding of the business requirements behind the databases and reports.To help improve SMMT data processes and efficiency through technical innovation.To help identify and meet future requirements for automotive data by keeping in touch with other SMMT departments (especially Public Policy and Vehicle Legislation) and external organisations and stakeholders.Please note that the this role requires good technical skills, especially Microsoft SQL Server, but also involves strong interpersonal and team working skills and a certain amount of general business administration, as well as helping out with day to day running of the department and company.Qualifications/Skills/Attributes required:Strong data analysis and processing skills.Proven experience of Microsoft SQL Server. Ability to work with complex databases, to write new complex queries and to understand and adapt existing SQL scripts and procedures.Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office software including MS-Word, MS-Excel, and ideally MS-Access.Strong team player with good customer facing and interpersonal skills.Ability to multi-task and prioritise to meet deadlines.High level of concentration and accuracy.Initiative, ability to learn and enthusiasm, self-starter.Aware of the need to maintain the confidentiality of personal data and commercially sensitive information and comply with contractual requirements.Main duties include:Carry out monthly, quarterly and annual take-on of external data sets.Database administration and housekeeping.To receive and process enquiries and orders for data from customers and other stakeholders and to carry these through to invoicing and order renewal.Carry out weekly vehicle model coding / linking e.g. DVLA codes and insurance group rating (Thatcham / code44).To liaise with the SMMT accounts department on customer invoicing and related financial matters.To help ensure the security and integrity of the databases and compliance with SMMT policies and supplier contract(s).To help develop, document and improve the database take-on and reporting processes.To evaluate and integrate other information sets into SMMT systems as required.To assist in the day to day running of the department and company.To carry out other duties as directed by the line manager and/or head of departmentSalary and benefits package:The package includes private medical insurance, company pension scheme, flexi time, 25 days annual leave, childcare vouchers, interest free season ticket loan (after six months).Deadline for Applications:4 July 2016Method of Application:Prospective candidates should e-mail jobsweb@smmt.co.uk with a CV and covering letter quoting your salary expectations.Early applications are encouraged as interviews will take place and the position offered before this date if a suitable candidate is found.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) read more

The 9 at 9 Tuesday

first_imgEVERY MORNING, TheJournal.ie brings you nine things you need to know with your morning cup of coffee.1. #STORM: Good news – Met Éireann has lifted the national weather warning. Showers and gale force winds lingering today will pass by this afternoon and it has been reported that the government’s emergency planning task force will meet today to discuss the damage caused by the storm.2. #PYLONS: The deadline for public submissions for Eirgrid’s Gridlink project, which could involve the construction of a large number of electricity pylons, expires later today. The company has said that, once the consultation process has been completed, it is willing to work with communities to resolve issues.3. #BARRISTERS: Barristers in Ireland have been paid some €139 million by the Attorney General over the last ten years, The Irish Times reports – mostly for asylum cases which accounted for 23 per cent.4. #MENTAL HEALTH: A study conducted by a team of Irish researchers has found high levels of post-traumatic stress disorder in psychiatric service users in this country. Among Irish participants in the research, sexual abuse.humiliation and lack of shelter were the top two traumatic events cited.5. #HAASS TALKS: The Ulster Unionist Party has rejected proposals by negotiator Dr Richard Haass on resolutions to the issues of flags, parades and dealing with the past. In a statement, the party said it believes the Haass document is ‘not viable and therefore unacceptable’.6. #MEDICAL CARDS: Over 700,000 medical cards have been issued in the last ten years. The lowest number of cards was issued in 2004 with levels rising each year since then and a huge leap of 150,000 extra cards between 2011 and 2012.7. #AER LINGUS: The airline reported a jump in long-haul passengers on almost 12 per cent last month, though short hall passengers fell slightly in December. Overall, the total numbers flying with Aer Lingus were unchanged last month compared to the previous year.8. #UNITED STATES: As we wave (hopefully) goodbye to our superstorm, the US has been gripped by a ‘polar vortex’ causing record low temperatures. AFP reports that more than a dozen death have been blamed on the frigid weather.9. #TURKEY: Some 350 Turkish police officers were dismissed from their posts overnight, BBC reports. This follows a probe into corruption, specifically targeting those in the force who were close to the government.last_img read more

Solar Powered Pyramids Light Up The UAE

first_imgAs part of a UAE competition, a group of designers has come up with the Lunar Cubit: a solar powered pyramid that both provides power and looks beautiful.The Lunar Cubit won first prize in the Land Art Generator Initiative, which is a competition focused on aesthetically pleasing green energy facilities. Essentially, the design is little more than a pyramid-shaped solar plant covered in solar panels. THe nine pyramids–one large one surrounded by smaller plants–are also equipped with a series of LED light that light up the night according to the current lunar phase.Attractive or not, the Lunar Cubit does seem a touch impractical, as one nine-pyramid set-up is only able to power around 250 homes.Via Fast Companylast_img

The structure of cicada wings can kill bacteria on contact

first_imgWe all know that there is both good and bad bacteria, and there are many ways to take down the bad guys. Normally, we resort to applying some sort of material to ourselves — soap, medicine, antibacterial lotion, and so on. Now, though, scientists have discovered a new way to kill bacteria, and it doesn’t involve some sort of third-party material. The very structure of cicada wings traps bacteria, and slowly rips it apart.At a microscopic level, the clanger cicada’s wing contains many tiny spikes. So, when some bacteria gets on the wing, the little guys essentially get impaled, then slowly slide down the spikes, being ripped apart until they die. The bacteria doesn’t instantly become impaled, though, as if it fell from a high ledge and landed square on a pole; it lands, and its own weight eventually pulls it down on to the spike, impaling it. As it slides, its skin becomes pulled apart, stretching the bacteria until it does, reminding us of a particular video game.However, the scientists tested what they felt appeared to be happening. In a microwave, they cooked various bacteria at different degrees, which in turn made some bacteria skin more elastic than other skin. The bacteria with the more elastic skin succumbed to the slow, skin-being-ripped-apart death, while the bacteria with the harder skin did not. This confirmed that the cicada wing spikes are, in fact, killing bacteria.This marks the first time scientists have seen the biomaterial of a living organism destroy bacteria. The discovery is relatively new, but in time, could pave the way for various materials that could protect surfaces from bacteria; perhaps some kind of glove, or a coating for toilet flushers. Wherever this discovery ends up, hopefully we’ll be killing bacteria with spikes sometime soon.last_img read more

Sophie Cotsis and Labor ready for Canterbury and Government

first_imgSophie Cotsis, the Member for Canterbury and first woman of Greek heritage to serve in the NSW parliament is in the midst of a campaign for re-election for the NSW State Election to be held on Saturday, 23 March. Canterbury is the home to one of the biggest Greek communities in the world and is amongst the most multicultural places in Australia. One can’t help be mesmerised by the charming suburbs, parks, shops and eateries of the Canterbury area. Born at Canterbury Hospital to parents from Lesvos, the clubhouse of the Mytilenean Brotherhood sits by the Cooks River, a place where she and her family have had many fond memories.Spending almost a year battling breast cancer, her return to the electorate and serving her constituents has brought a smile and a sense of relief to the 46 year old.Ms Cotsis first served in the NSW Parliament in the Legislative Council between 7 September 2010 until 16 September 2016, when she resigned and successfully ran for the seat of Canterbury that was vacated by Linda Burney. Ms Burney, who moved on to the Federal Seat of Barton, is one the nation’s foremost politicians, and is of Wiradjuri and Scottish descent. Both women seem to reflect the diversity and gender balance that the Labor Party has sought to attain; a genuine reflection of modern Australia.They hosted a barbeque on Saturday, 24 February at the Campsie South Bowling Club with over 200 supporters and volunteers in attendance. They were also joined by Ed Husic, the Member for Chifley.Ms Cotsis told supporters, friends and colleagues of her hopes for another term, with education, Canterbury Hospital, health, good jobs, free TAFE, environment and local issues top of her agenda.Since 2016, Sophie and her office have responded and engaged with thousands of residents, schools, businesses and other stakeholders on local issues and this is something they fully intend to continue with.The Canterbury state Labor MP is excited to be campaigning again after taking a leave of absence in 2018 to fight breast cancer. Toward the last few weeks of last year, Ms Cotsis turned the spotlight on her own health and breast cancer, urging women and men to put their own health first.“This was a difficult time for me and my family and I deeply appreciate the steadfast support of my wonderful family, friends, my local community, staff and colleagues,” Ms Cotsis said.“I now look forward to doing what I love and representing my community,  and to fight the 2019 NSW State Election as the Member for Canterbury. We are confident that Michael Daley will become the next Premier of our wonderful state.” Sophie was particular grateful to the local Labor branch members and volunteers who love Canterbury as much as she does.For more information or to help with the campaign: sophie.cotsis@nswlabor.org.au Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Windows Phone 200 millions de dollars de promotion

first_imgWindows Phone : 200 millions de dollars de promotionMicrosoft et ses partenaires, tels Nokia, voient les choses en grand. Pour promouvoir outre-Atlantique les smartphones équipés de Windows Phone, l’OS mobile du géant de Redmond, ils prévoiraient un budget de quelque 200 millions de dollars. Microsoft est bien décidé à offrir à son OS Windows Phone une place de choix sur le marché des systèmes d’exploitation mobile, pour l’heure dominé par Android et iOS. Pour y parvenir, le géant de Redmond entend miser sur une campagne commerciale de taille. Avec ses partenaires, et notamment Nokia, Microsoft prévoit en effet d’investir, avec certains de ses partenaires, comme Nokia, quelque 200 millions de dollars en opérations marketing, et ce uniquement pour les Etats-Unis.À lire aussiNomophobie : traitement, symptômes, qu’est-ce que c’est ?Ce budget permettra la mise en place d’incitations financières, comprises entre 10 et 15 dollars par mobile vendu, pour encourager les revendeurs à mettre en avant les smartphones sous Windows Phone, au détriment des iPhone et autres terminaux Android, explique le site TechWeekEurope.co.uk. Les commerçants devraient en outre se voir dispenser des formations pour qu’ils orientent les consommateurs vers l’OS de Microsoft. De vastes actions commerciales visant directement le grand public sont bien entendu également au programme.Après l’arrivée du premier Windows Phone de Nokia, le Lumia 800, la firme finlandaise s’apprête à dévoiler son Lumia 900. Il devrait être présenté lors du CES 2012 de Las Vegas, qui aura lieu du 10 au 13 janvier.Le 6 janvier 2012 à 15:00 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Medals Will Be Made Out Of Old Gadgets

first_imgHost cities always try to put their own special twist on things when it comes to designing Olympic medals. For Tokyo, that twist is to make them out of people’s old, unwanted gadgets.You’re probably well aware of the fact that electronics contain all kinds of valuable metals. The Olympic Committee is challenging Japanese residents to recycle eight tons of old electronics. They’re hopeful that amount will yield enough gold to produce the 5,000 medals they’ll need to award winners at both the Olympic and Paralympic games.They don’t need as much gold to make that many medals as you might thing. The gold medals handed out at the Rio games, for example, used roughly .2 ounces of gold. If they use a similar composition for Tokyo, they’ll only need about 62 pounds of gold.Image: WikipediaFormer Olympic decathlete and world-record holder Ashton Eaton told Japan Times, “when an athlete at Tokyo wins a medal, the weight of it will not be from the gold, silver or bronze; it will be the weight of a nation.” Medals made from recycled electronics already sound cool, but Eaton makes it sound downright badass.Mobile giant NTT Docomo will be placing collection boxes in 2400 of its stores, and organizers estimate that they’ll need millions of phones to hit their 8-ton goal. Other collection centers will be set up so that locals can drop off other electronics, too.Old motherboards and CPUs will no doubt be welcome contributions, especially older ones. Gold tended to be used a lot less sparingly back in the day of 386 and 486 PCs, so they’ll hit their goal a whole lot quicker if people have vintage computing hardware they can part with.last_img read more

Gracia hopeful over Kabaseles return from injury

first_imgWatford manager Javi Gracia insists he’s hopeful Christian Kabasele will be available soon, after revealing the defender didn’t suffer a serious injury.Kabasele was in clear pain after he collided with the goalpost during Watford’s 2-1 home loss to Chelsea, as he slid attempting to stop a Willian effort from entering the goal.The Belgium international was substituted off and taken to the hospital later in the first half after leaving the stadium on a stretcher wearing an oxygen mask.Confirming he will miss Saturday’s home game against Newcastle United, Javi Gracia said, according to Harrow Times:What to expect from Watford V Arsenal? Taimoor Khan – September 8, 2019 Arsenal are set to take on Watford this weekend and the game is definitely going to be quite a peculiar contest between two sides…“He’s not training with the team. After the game he didn’t feel well, but now I think he’s only feeling some pain (to his shoulder and back area), but I think he will be ready soon.”However, Gracia did not rule out the possibility of Kabasele being available for next week’s New Year trip to the Vitality stadium to face Bournemouth, but he was optimistic the 27-year-old would available for selection again sooner rather than later.He said: “In this moment I can’t tell you when he will be ready but we now know – because after the game we didn’t know what he had – it’s only pain and I think he will be available for the next games.”last_img read more

Off Beat Another chance for Navy veteran and pet Chance

first_imgThanks to two local Gold Star mothers, a veteran got his Chance … and Chance — a mixed-breed dog — got a second chance.Elizabeth Johnson and Wendy Campbell were part of the network that flew the service animal last week from Boston to Portland International Airport, where James Allensworth was waiting to meet him.Johnson’s son, Army Cpl. Jeremiah Johnson, died in 2007 as a result of injuries suffered while serving in Iraq. Johnson works for Horizon Air in their cargo freight facility at PDX.Campbell’s son, Army Pfc. Andrew Shields, was killed by a suicide car bomber in Afghanistan in 2008. The Battle Ground Gold Star mother also is part of a couple of animal-welfare networks. Campbell, an Army veteran herself, also is affiliated with the Patriot Guard Riders; so is Allensworth.After Allensworth put something up on a Patriot Guard Rider site, “one of them contacted me about finding Jimmy a service dog,” Campbell said.“I was on Facebook, talking about (post-traumatic stress disorder) and depression,” said Allensworth, a Tigard, Ore., resident who was in the Navy from 1978 to 1984. “The next thing, a Gold Star mom reaches out.”last_img read more

As carbon emissions rise salmon may lose crucial sense of smell

first_imgCoho salmon, spawning (Phto courtesy of the University of Washington)A new study has found that one of the coho salmon’s most valuable senses may diminish as more carbon dioxide enters the North Pacific Ocean – threatening their ability to avoid predators, find their way back to their natal streams and even their ability to find spawning mates.Chase Williams is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Washington. Williams worked on the study in conjunction with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center.“We did this study because over the last almost 10 years, there’s been a lot of research coming out of Australia on tropical reef fish and couple of other places in the world looking at the elevated effects of Co2 levels and fish behaviors,” Williams explained.In this particular study, Williams and his colleagues measured juvenile coho salmon’s ability to detect predators by injecting ground up salmon scales into tanks holding individual fish.“So normally a fish’s skin is lacerated, say by a predator munching down on a fish, there’s a chemical cue or cues, no one is quite exactly sure what yet,” Williams said. “But those odors are released into the water and nearby species have a very strong avoidance reaction to it.”For two weeks prior to the test, different groups of juvenile coho were exposed to current carbon dioxide levels in Puget Sound and estimated levels both 50 and 100 years from now.The study measured each fish’s avoidance response when scales were injected into their tanks, and coho that were exposed to higher levels of carbon dioxide were increasingly indifferent to the smell.“We found that the salmon are still likely still smelling the odors. So there are no changes in the way their nose is detecting the odors,” Williams noted. “But we did pick up changes in the way that their brain was potentially processing those odor signals. So that’s what is likely driving the behavioral changes.”Williams hopes to conduct similar experiments on other salmon species, but he said this study is concerning for all salmon from the Pacific Northwest to Alaska – particularly for populations that are currently struggling.last_img read more

Separate suicide bombings kill 10 in Iraq

first_imgA view of the site of a car bomb in the Ilam district of southern Baghdad. Photo: AFPAt least 10 people were killed and 33 wounded on Friday, in a series of suicide bombings that hit Baghdad and parts of Mosul recently recaptured from Islamic State, medical and security sources said.The militant group, which still controls significant parts of Iraq and Syria, claimed the attacks in online statements.A man blew himself up inside the Sayidati al-Jamila (“My Fair Lady”) restaurant at lunchtime in eastern Mosul, killing at least four people and wounding 15.A suicide car-bomb killed a soldier and wounded four others in the eastern side of the city, which U.S.-backed Iraqi forces took from Islamic State last month.A car bomb parked in the Ilam district of southern Baghdad blew up killing five and wounding 14.The offensive to dislodge Islamic State from Mosul, the largest city in northern Iraq, began in October but paused last month after Iraqi forces took all the districts lying east of the Tigris river that bisects the city.Friday’s attacks in Mosul are the second major incident in those districts. A triple car bombing killed at least 23 people in the eastern suburb of Kokjali on 22 Dec.last_img read more

UPDATE Floridas Governor Signs Compromise School Safety Bill

first_imgPhoto via Twitter @FLGovScottFlorida Gov. Rick Scott delivers his State of the State Address in the House chambers on the opening day of the legislative session, Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, in Tallahassee, Fla.Flanked by family members of students who were killed during a mass shooting just over three weeks ago, Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed a $400 million school safety bill in response to the tragedy that killed 17 people at a high school.He said the bill, which was written since the shooting, balances “our individual rights with need for public safety.”“It’s an example to the entire country that government can and has, moved fast.”The bill isn’t what many of the shooting’s survivors, or the school’s students, wanted — they said it doesn’t go far enough. It also marks Scott’s break with the National Rifle Association, and the group’s powerful lobbyist called the bill “a display of bullying and coercion” that would violate Second Amendment rights and punish law-abiding citizens.It raises the minimum age to buy rifles from 18 to 21 and creates a waiting period on sales of the weapons. It also creates a so-called “guardian” program that enables teachers and other school employees in participating districts to carry handguns if they complete law enforcement training.Scott said he is still “not persuaded” about the guardian program.“I’m glad however, the plan in this bill is not mandatory,” he said, adding that the program will be up to local officials to implement. “If counties don’t want to do this, they can simply say no.”He said he’s signing the legislation because it makes schools safer. He singled out two fathers whose children were killed, saying that they walked the halls of the Legislature since the shooting to enact change.“I know the debate on all these issues will continue. And that’s healthy in our democracy,” he said. “This is a time for all of us to come together, roll up our sleeves and get it done.”Student activists from the school where the shooting took place followed the bill’s track closely and called it “a baby step.”“Obviously, this is what we’ve been fighting for. It’s nowhere near the long-term solution,” said Chris Grady, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and one of the organizers of the March for Life later this month in Washington, D.C. “It’s a baby step, but a huge step at the same time. Florida hasn’t passed any legislation like this in God knows how long. It’s nowhere near what we want, but it’s progress and uplifting to see.”Scott told the students: “You helped change our state. You made a difference. You should be proud.”The bill narrowly passed the House and Senate, and falls short of what he wanted and what survivors of the massacre demanded. Florida’s teachers union and the National Rifle Association are opposed.The measure would raise the minimum age to buy rifles from 18 to 21, extend a three-day waiting period for handgun purchases to include long guns and ban bump stocks that allow guns to mimic fully automatic fire.In schools, it would create a “guardian” program enabling staff with law enforcement training and school district approval to carry concealed handguns on campus. It would create new mental health programs for schools and establish an anonymous tip line where students and others could report threats. It also seeks to improve communication between schools, law enforcement and state agencies.The NRA opposes raising age limits to buy weapons or imposing new waiting periods. In a statement Thursday, NRA and Unified Sportsmen of Florida lobbyist Marion Hammer called the bill “a display of bullying and coercion” that would violate Second Amendment rights and punish law-abiding citizens.Broward County teachers union President Anna Fusco met with Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera and let him know that teachers support the school safety bill, but don’t like the provision that allows school employees and some teachers to carry guns after receiving law enforcement training. She said she wants Gov. Rick Scott to veto the money for the so-called guardian program when he receives the budget. Scott can’t veto individual items in the bill itself, but can does have line-item veto power with the budget.“We support the bill,” Fusco said. “I know there’s lots of things in there that are a start, and there’s in there that’s going to bring some pieces back together for Parkland. But there’s a piece in there that we’re concerned about — arming educators in schools.”The program to arm teachers would be optional, and the Broward County school superintendent has already said he doesn’t want to participate. Fusco said she expects Scott to sign the bill.Meanwhile, the 19-year-old former student accused of opening fire at the school on Feb. 14 made his initial appearance before a judge on 17 attempted murder charges added this week by the grand jury. In the brief hearing Friday, Nikolas Cruz stood with his head bowed as he appeared via video conference. He is also charged with 17 counts of first-degree murder.Cruz’s public defender withdrew an initial not guilty plea, leaving him to “stand mute” for now, but has said he will plead guilty if prosecutors take the death penalty off the table and sentence him to life in prison instead. Prosecutors have not announced a decision. Sharelast_img read more

Two studies cast doubt on existence of exomoon

first_img Unconfirmed exomoon could be unlike any of those in our solar system Two teams working independently have looked at the possibility of an exomoon circling the exoplanet Kepler-1625b, which orbits the star Kepler-1625. They report little to no evidence supporting its existence. One team, led by Laura Kreidberg, has written a paper describing their work, which is posted on the arXiv preprint server. Another team led by René Heller published a paper in the journal Astronomy Astrophysics. The team that announced possible evidence of the exomoon last year, led by Alex Teachey, has written another paper in response to the findings by the new researchers that is available on arXiv. Journal information: Astronomy & Astrophysics © 2019 Science X Network Last October, Teachey and colleagues published a paper describing evidence they had found for the possible existence of an exomoon. They had noted dips of light from its star recorded by the Kepler space telescope that suggested a large body circling Kepler-1625b. They found the same sort of dip in Hubble data. Such dips are generally indicative of a planet or other object interfering with light from its star as it passes in front of it—in this case, Kepler-1625. They also noted that Kepler-1625b had what appeared to be an odd transit—it began earlier than it should have and the dip in brightness that resulted did not return to normal for a period longer than calculations suggested it should have, comprising more evidence of an exomoon.The team led by Kreidberg analyzed the Hubble data using a different data-processing technique that has been used successfully for over seven years. They report no evidence of a dip other than that triggered by Kepler-1625b. The team led by Heller did observe a slight dip, but suggests it was not sufficient evidence of an exomoon. Both teams also saw the odd transit, but both suggest it could have been due to other phenomena, so attributing it to an exomoon was not warranted.In their reply, Teachey and his team took another look at their earlier results and suggest they warrant further observations of Kepler-1625b for more evidence. They also addressed the findings of Kreidberg’s team and noted that the technique used by the group could have resulted in some data being erased. More information: Alex Teachey et al. Loose Ends for the Exomoon Candidate Host Kepler-1625b. arXiv:1904.11896 [astro-ph.EP] arxiv.org/abs/1904.11896Laura Kreidberg et al. No Evidence for Lunar Transit in New Analysis of HST Observations of the Kepler-1625 System. arXiv:1904.10618 [astro-ph.EP]. arxiv.org/abs/1904.10618 René Heller et al. An alternative interpretation of the exomoon candidate signal in the combined Kepler and Hubble data of Kepler-1625, Astronomy & Astrophysics (2019). DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201834913center_img Explore further Citation: Two studies cast doubt on existence of exomoon (2019, May 6) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-05-exomoon.html Credit: CC0 Public Domain This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

With TweetDeck Gone 6 Alternative Tools for Managing Social Media

first_imgMarch 6, 2013 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. This story originally appeared on PR Daily 3 min read EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated. The TweetDeck mobile and desktop apps are dead–at least they will be soon. The service, which Twitter bought in 2011, announced on its blog on Monday that it will discontinue its mobile and desktop versions, including the apps TweetDeck AIR, TweetDeck for Android, and TweetDeck for iPhone. According to the TweetDeck blog, the apps will be removed from their respective stores in early May and will stop working shortly after that. The company also said it will discontinue support for its Facebook integration. However, it will continue to maintain a Web-based version.”To continue to offer a great product that addresses your unique needs, we’re going to focus our development efforts on our modern, Web-based versions of TweetDeck,” the company said on its blog. Doubling down on its Web-based version is, in fact, an evolution to a better experience for the user, according to TweetDeck. “In many ways, doubling down on the TweetDeck web experience and discontinuing our app support is a reflection of where our TweetDeck power-users are going,” it said in a blog post. “Over the past few years, we’ve seen a steady trend toward people using TweetDeck on their computers and Twitter on their mobile devices.”TweetDeck emerged as one of the more popular and useful tools for monitoring and tracking conversations on Twitter. It was free, and it was useful. Recently, however, it’s become less popular with social media managers. TweetDeck was stuck in a middle ground–the average Twitter user doesn’t need a management tool, and brand managers tend to gravitate toward the more sophisticated tools. However, if TweetDeck’s demise as a mobile and desktop app leaves you scrambling for a new social media management tool, here are a few of the top alternatives–they’re not free, but they do offer a host of services that go beyond most free monitoring tools: Better for social media publishing: HootSuite. One of the most popular Twitter management tools, HootSuite enables you to manage multiple accounts across multiple social platforms. Last September, HootSuite acquired another top TweetDeck alternative, Seesmic. Sprout Social. Here’s another popular management tool in which you can schedule posts and get snapshot metrics. It’s not free, nor as cheap as HootSuite, but it’s customizable in ways that HootSuite isn’t. SpredFast. This tool markets itself to large brands and caters to them, while Sprout and HootSuite could be just as effective if you were using it for personal account management. Better for social listening/monitoring: Radian6 (now called Salesforce Marketing Cloud). Clients are often comfortable when their agencies use Radian6. It’s relatively easy to use, and empowers companies to clearly understand their place in social. Crimson Hexagon. Looking for in-depth sentiment metrics to help you determine your overall social strategy? This is absolutely your tool. The depth of information you can mine from Crimson Hexagon is truly awesome. This service does not offer a mobile app. Sysomos. Although Sysomos is less sophisticated than Radian6 or Crimson Hexagon, it is easy to use for quick monitoring around your brand. It’s better as an everyday tool than the others, but it does not offer a mobile app.  Register Now »last_img read more

Googles Assignments Tool Helps Teachers Detect Student Plagiarism

first_img Ads by Amazon Bestseller Ads by Amazon Search Wow facts 2Share this videoCopyPausePlay00:00% Buffered0PreviousPausePlayNextLive00:00 / 00:00UnmuteMuteExit fullscreenFullscreenCopy video urlPlay / PauseMute / UnmuteReport a problemLanguageBackMox PlayerDefaultEnglishEspañolУкраїнськаРусскийadvertisementThis not only helps teachers to detect plagiarism and lessen their time in grading, but it can also help students to uphold academic integrity by giving them a chance to make sure that they did not commit any unintended plagiarism in the works that they will submit.Google AssignmentsApart from the originality checker, Google’s Assignments tool also has other features to help educators. With it, they can easily create assignments and send them to students, as well as organize their work by class, date, and even students. It also allows them simplify their grading process and easily leave feedback on their students’ works using the comment bank which stores their most frequently used feedbacks. What’s more, Google assures the privacy and security of using these tools.“We never assume ownership of your data – that belongs to you and your students. Our responsibility is to keep it more secure. And because Assignments was built for education, it meets rigorous compliance standards,” said Google, noting the privacy laws that they are strictly upholding including the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.According to Google, using these tools don’t just help educators, but they also prepare the students for the workforce as they will also be using the Google tools that even big companies use. TAG Google, teachers, Plagiarism AllVideo On Demand: Rent or BuyClothing & AccessoriesMajor AppliancesArts, Crafts & SewingAutomotiveBaby & NurseryBeauty & GroomingBooks & TextbooksCollectible CoinsCamera & PhotoCell Phones & AccessoriesClassical MusicComputers, Tablets & ComponentsBlu-Ray & DVDElectronic Components & Home AudioEntertainment CollectiblesVideo GamesOther Gift Card BrandsGrocery & Gourmet FoodPatio, Lawn & GardenHealth & HouseholdBusiness & Industrial SuppliesJewelryKindle StoreKitchen & DiningMagazinesMiscellaneousDigital MusicCDs & VinylMusical InstrumentsOffice & School SuppliesPet Food & SuppliesPatio, Lawn & GardenShoes, Handbags, Wallets, SunglassesSoftwareSports CollectiblesSports & FitnessHome ImprovementToys & GamesVHSVideo GamesWatches ENDS IN DEAL OF THE DAY All Close Google Assignments lets teachers create and copy assignments for students with ease. According to Google, the tool lets teachers prepare the students for the workforce by utilizing tools that companies also choose.   ( Google ) Google for Education is unveiling a new feature that can help both teachers and students turn in original reports. One of the things educators can do with the tool “Assignments” is check their students’ work for plagiarism in just one search.Plagiarism CheckerThere is no denying that students nowadays have incredible access to information like never before. While this is convenient for both students and educators, it also makes it harder to detect potentially plagiarized work, whether or not it is intentional.Now, Google has unveiled a plagiarism checker available on Assignments and Classroom that can help teachers detect plagiarized work in just a single search by cross-referencing it with hundreds of billions of web pages and tens of millions of books. The reports then point out ineffective paraphrasing, unmentioned citations, and even unintended plagiarism due to being too similar to another source. ⓒ 2018 TECHTIMES.com All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.last_img read more

MAS drops eight lossmaking routes

first_imgMalaysia Airlines drops eight routes Source = e-Travel Blackboard: S.P In an attempt to cut further losses Malaysia Airlines as part of its ‘route rationalisation exercise’ plans to withdraw eight loss-making routes beginning 06 January next year. The national carriers affected routes are Kuala Lumpur-Surabaya, Kuala Lumpur-Dubai, Kuala Lumpur-Karachi-Dubai, Kuala Lumpur-Dubai-Damman, Langkawi-Penang-Singapore, Kuala Lumpur- Johannesburg, Kuala Lumpur-Cape Town-Buenos Aires and Kuala Lumpur to Rome.Malaysia Airlines Group Chief Executive Officer Ahmad Jauhari Yahya said the eight routes account for almost 12 percent of passenger capacity and expects the withdrawal will improve loads, increase yields and have a profit impact of RM220 to RM302 million next year.“The above route rationalisation is expected to have minimal impact on Malaysia’s position as a top tourist destination in Asia as we will work with our code share partners,” Ahmad Jauhari said.   “Through our existing arrangements with them, we will continue to promote connectivity between Malaysia and key international destinations as well as contribute towards the overall efforts by the various authorities to increase tourist arrivals to Malaysia.”Mr Ahmad Jauhari added the carrier expects to return to these markets after the company’s financial status is stabilised.In a written statement, Malaysia Airlines said it regrets any inconvenience caused to its passengers and assured customers that it will honor all forward bookings ticketed to date on the affected routes.Malaysia Airlines claims the impact on its Cargo division will be minimal as the carrier continues to maintain its key cargo destinations in Australia, Europe, UK, Orient, Middle East, South Africa and the US.last_img read more

Chinese celebrities to showcase Sydney and surrounds

first_imgChinese celebrities to showcase Sydney and surroundsChinese celebrities to showcase Sydney and surrounds to millions in TV reality showImages of some of NSW‘s most popular attractions will be seen by more than 44 million Chinese television and online viewers after filming of the popular Chinese reality show Travel with Superstar takes place across Sydney and Regional NSW this week.NSW Minister for Tourism and Major Events Adam Marshall said the activity supported by the State’s tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW, will showcase Sydney, the Blue Mountains, Mudgee, Gunnedah, the Hunter Valley, Newcastle and Port Macquarie to a massive audience across Mainland China.“China is NSW‘s largest inbound tourism market and we are delighted to be exposing Australia’s number one tourism and events State to potential Chinese visitors,” Mr Marshall said.In the year ended December 2016, NSW welcomed more than 683,000 visitors from China who spent more than $2.7 billion in the State.“We know Chinese visitors love what Sydney and rural and regional NSW has to offer, and this program will inspire even more visitors to come and see our world-famous attractions and landscapes,” Mr Marshall said.Travel with Superstar, now in its third season, will follow two Chinese celebrities on a road trip from Sydney to Gunnedah and on to Port Macquarie.  Sydney and NSW will feature in all 20 episodes of Travel with Superstar. The celebrities cast in the show will also post about their experiences on popular Chinese social media site Weibo. The celebrities boast 4.5 million followers between them.Destination NSW Chief Executive Officer Sandra Chipchase said the show will be broadcast on the China Communication Television Broadcast Network (CCTBN) as well as 32 different online platforms.“In every shot of every episode for the entire season, our attractions, our scenery, our natural wonders will be there, capturing the attention of viewers,” Ms Chipchase added.The filming will begin in The Blue Mountains where the celebrities will visit Echo Point, Scenic World and experience the thrill of canyoning. The show will also feature Featherdale Wildlife park, as well as visits to wineries, museums, bee and deer farms, Indigenous cultural experiences, as well as a hot air balloon ride over the Hunter Valley.Filming is scheduled to commence on Saturday 25 March, with the 20 person crew and celebrities returning to China on Sunday 2 April.Travel with Superstar is produced by Sue Grace Media Pty Ltd and is due to be broadcast in China in mid-April Source = Destination NSWlast_img read more