8 August 2008The United Nations human rights office has voiced serious concerns about the execution of a Mexican national by United States authorities in defiance of an order from the International Court of Justice (ICJ). José Ernesto Medellín was executed by the authorities in the US state of Texas by lethal injection on 5 August. This despite the fact that the ICJ, also known as the World Court, ordered the US last month to delay the executions of Mr. Medellín and four other Mexican nationals on death row in its prisons until the court issues a final ruling on the matter.“The United States has an international legal obligation to comply with decisions of the International Court of Justice, an obligation which cannot be set aside because of domestic constitutional arrangements,” Rupert Colville, spokesperson for the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), told a news conference in Geneva today.A 2004 ruling by the ICJ, which is based in The Hague, Netherlands, on the same issue found that the US had been in breach of its international obligations because authorities did not inform 51 Mexican nationals of their right to contact their consular representatives “without delay” after being arrested.“Mr. Medellín had been found guilty of very serious crimes,” stated Mr. Colville. “However, at the time of his arrest, he was not informed of his right to consular assistance in accordance with international treaty obligations under the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.”The Court had ordered that the US take all measures necessary to ensure that Mr Medellín, and others, not be executed until he received a review and reconsideration of his case to determine whether the breach of the Vienna Convention prejudiced his defence. Judgments of the ICJ are binding and cannot be appealed. OHCHR notes that the ICJ orders remain valid for another 50 Mexican nationals on death row in the US whose situation is similar to that of Mr. Medellín.“The finality of the death penalty makes it essential that it is applied with scrupulous attention to safeguards set down international law,” noted Mr. Colville. “One of those safeguards is that foreign nationals should have access to consular services. “This is crucial for the protection of all individuals who travel abroad. It is imperative that all States take every possible action to ensure reciprocal compliance of this safeguard, not least for the sake of their own nationals,” he said.
“In recent months, there has been progress on several commitments under the Framework. The capacity of armed groups to attack civilians in eastern DRC has been impaired, particularly after the defeat of the former M23 at the end of 2013. This has improved security in the region,” said Mr. Ban at a Headquarters meeting of the signatories of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the region, who wrapped up their work with the approval of a Communiqué.On 24 February 2013, recognizing the recurring cycles of conflict and violence that permeate the eastern DRC, 11 African countries Framework, which represents an avenue of hope for the region’s people to build stability by addressing the root causes of the conflict and fostering trust between neighbours.At today’s fourth meeting reviewing the progress of the Framework, Mr. Ban was joined by several high-level officials including President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz of Mauritania, President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, and Vice-President Manuel Domingos Vincente of Angola. Several officials from the African Union and the South African Development Community (SADC) were also in attendance. “Over the next few years, several countries of the Great Lakes region will be holding pivotal elections. This should strengthen the democratic culture in the region. I hope these countries will emerge from the elections stronger, more united and more stable,” said Mr. Ban. But several armed groups continue to hamper these efforts. The Nairobi Declarations of the Kampala process have been implemented too slowly. And there remains a lack of trust among some countries of the region. “We must speed up the implementation of the Nairobi Declarations of the Kampala Process, including the repatriation of eligible former M23 elements to the DRC. And we must continue building trust and confidence among countries of the region,” Mr. Ban added.He recalled that at the third meeting, held at the African Union Headquarters in Addis Ababa in January, participants endorsed the regional Plan of Action and 15 priority activities for implementation of the Framework. They also requested that the Technical Support Committee submit a progress report on the implementation of the regional Plan of Action. Presented by the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy and the Special Representative of the African Union Chairperson, the report documents progress and offers recommendations. “I welcome the collective and unequivocal message to the FDLR that they should voluntarily surrender and disarm before the 2nd of January 2015,” the UN chief said.The Secretary-General also underscored the need for donors, especially the African Development Bank, the European Union, the World Bank and bilateral partners, to remain committed to supporting initiatives for peace, security and cooperation in the region.“We should spare no effort to end the instability that has affected millions of people and impeded development and prosperity in the region for far too long,” Mr. Ban reiterated. In their remarks, the regional leaders expressed their appreciation to former Special Envoy Mary Robinson for her valuable efforts to achieve peace and stability in eastern DRC and the region, and welcomed Mr. Said Djinnit as the new Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for the Great Lakes Region. Speaking to the leaders for the first time, Special Envoy Djinnit noted: “The Great Lakes region is at a crossroads. It can only realize its vast potential once sensitive security concerns are fully resolved and relations between neighbouring countries improve.” He pledged to work closely with all key stakeholders to ensure that the regional accord, which has become known as the “Framework of Hope”, delivers on its promises.
A season after the Boston Red Sox won the World Series, there’s no getting around how lousy the team has been. With a record of 43 wins and 52 losses, the Red Sox entered the All-Star break in last place in the American League East — nine-and-a-half games behind the division-leading Baltimore Orioles and eight games out of the league’s final wild-card spot. Naive estimates of playoff probability, which treat every future game on the schedule as a coin flip, peg Boston’s chances of qualifying for the postseason at just 3.7 percent.For a team in such a predicament, the media’s attention usually turns to which players it should sell off at the July 31 trade deadline. Sure enough, Red Sox General Manager Ben Cherington was asked Thursday about deadline plans, to which he responded:“We’re going to do whatever we feel gives the Red Sox the best chance to be as good as possible as quickly as possible. And we are not conceding 2014 with that statement. … We’ve put ourselves in this position, so the math is working against us a little bit. But stranger things have happened. We don’t see why we can’t win more games than most of the teams ahead of us.”That’s pretty standard fare; Boston wasn’t the only team in such straits to deny the obvious about its deadline-day status. But in Cherington’s case, such a statement might not merely be a case of brazen self-deception. Beneath the Red Sox’s terrible record, there might lurk a good baseball team.The baseball statistics website FanGraphs.com has a mechanism by which it projects — based on the talent of players — the number of wins above replacement (WAR) each team is likely to accrue over the remainder of the season. This process incorporates updated forecasts for each player (using the ZiPS and Steamer projection systems) and playing-time estimates from the site’s depth charts (which take injuries into account).By this measure, the four teams projected to produce the most WAR from the All-Star break onward are the Washington Nationals, Detroit Tigers, Oakland Athletics and … Boston Red Sox.The first three teams on that list have won 58.4 percent of their games this season; Boston has won 45.3 percent. But, as Cherington alluded to, the Red Sox do have the talent to play better. Compared to their preseason (per-plate appearance) ZiPS and Steamer projections, Boston’s batters have produced 4.7 fewer WAR than would have been expected before the season, and that doesn’t even take into account injuries suffered by Will Middlebrooks, Shane Victorino and Mike Napoli during the season. (Interestingly, all of the Red Sox’s WAR shortfall has come on the position-player side; the team’s pitchers have exceeded expectations by 1.8 WAR.)A study by sabermetrician Phil Birnbaum showed that teams frequently see their players’ performances vary wildly around projections due to chance alone. In Birnbaum’s data, there were 1.5 teams per season from 1960 to 2001 who, through simple bad luck, undershot their “true” talent by the equivalent of 11 wins per 162 games — a hypothesis the FanGraphs numbers are asking us to believe about this Red Sox team. (Note as well that Major League Baseball had 17 percent fewer teams per season over the span of Birnbaum’s data than it has today, so the number of teams falling short because of luck in a 30-team league is even larger than the study’s seasonal average.)Birnbaum’s “luck-adjusted” wins from the previous season track much more closely with a team’s wins in the following season than its actual wins from the previous season, which attests to the value of projections that attempt to filter out random variance. That’s a big reason why FanGraphs’ projections expect Boston to post the seventh-best record in the major leagues from today onward, despite its poor record to date. It’s also why, after adjusting for the Red Sox’s projected talent level (instead of treating future games like coin flips), FanGraphs’ playoff-odds report bumps their postseason probability up to 6.6 percent.It’s always possible that in the roller-coaster world of the Red Sox, last year’s World Series winning squad might be the outlier sandwiched between two terrible seasons. But the best public sabermetric projections available agree with Cherington — this team is much better than its record would have us believe (even if it’s still unlikely to make the playoffs).
The narrative that analytics poseurs are doing inferior jobs in front offices compared to ex-players and coaches who really know how to evaluate talent has made its way to the NBA.Last month, ESPN columnist Chris Broussard wrote a piece examining recent trends in the hiring of NBA general managers. Broussard questioned whether “stats guys” were advancing in front offices at the expense of “basketball lifers.” He quoted two anonymous NBA executives who expressed the idea that analytics is taking too large a role in front offices and that “analytics guys” who haven’t played or coached don’t really understand the game.But the data on performance by NBA general managers over the last 20 seasons suggests that stats-oriented GMs aren’t any worse than regular GMs. They actually may be a bit better.One of the anonymous executives in Broussard’s article compared the new breed of analytics hires to amateur stock-pickers, whereas to this executive’s mind ex-players were gimlet-eyed veteran portfolio-managers. The other executive said, per Broussard:“Most of them have zero basketball education because they have never played or participated in the sport; they have only observed the sport. To sum it up: Basketball guys are highly offended that uneducated [in a basketball sense] analytics guys are masquerading as basketball guys but haven’t been taught, trained or educated by any basketball professors or gone to any basketball classes.”It’s not accurate to characterize all analytics-focused GM hires as uneducated in traditional basketball. Masai Ujiri of the Toronto Raptors, Ryan McDonough of the Phoenix Suns and Rob Hennigan of the Orlando Magic are all young GMs who rely on analytics. They also spent years inside NBA organizations working as scouts and talent evaluators. Their credentials are legitimate. But if we play along with the false dichotomy of “basketball guys” versus stats analysts, we should expect general managers who played or coached in the NBA to have better results than those who come from backgrounds as scouts or agents.On one point at least, the narrative is right: Of the 23 general managers NBA teams have hired in the last four off-seasons, 18 neither played nor coached in the NBA.1Masai Ujiri was hired twice in that time period by Denver in 2010 and then Toronto in 2013. That’s very different from how it used to be: In the 15 years prior, non-coaches and non-players comprised only 33 of the 81 GM hires. The chart below shows a clear trend toward nontraditional GM candidates:Once they’re hired, GMs still have to perform. The most basic criterion by which to judge GMs is their tenure with a team. While some owners have more patience than others, GMs generally need to put winning teams on the court to remain employed. If ex-player GMs were much better than former scouts or agents, we would expect them to be employed for longer stints. Instead we see this:This is a Kaplan-Meier survival plot, an illustration of what share of a population survives at a given time, and it shows that GMs who were former players or coaches tend to have slightly shorter tenures than GMs who were neither. Note, however, that the difference, as measured by a Cox Proportional Hazards model, is not significant.But employment status is merely a reflection of a GM’s success, or lack thereof, in producing a winning team. We can also measure GMs by what their teams do on the court. GMs who never played in the NBA are slightly worse in improving winning percentage, but they inherit better teams.2I used the team’s winning percentage at the end of a GM’s third season to allow time for rebuilding. (It’s harder to add five wins to a playoff team than it is to a lottery team.) GMs who were players or coaches have inherited teams with an average winning percentage of .410; GMs who are outsiders started working for teams with a .490 winning percentage. That partly explains why in the third year of their tenures, basketball lifers had increased their teams’ winning percentages by 5.7 percent on average, as opposed to 2 percent for outsiders. But that difference is not statistically significant, and more outsiders’ teams made the playoffs (63 percent vs. 48 percent).Good GMs and bad GMs come from all different backgrounds. For every Jerry West or Danny Ainge, there’s an Elgin Baylor or M.L. Carr. Seven of the last 18 NBA championships were won by teams whose decision-makers neither played nor coached in the NBA.3Exactly who those seven were: That’s almost exactly in line with the 42 percent of team seasons those non-players have overseen in that time period.Of course, none of the scouts who’ve won NBA titles as GMs would be described as dilettantes masquerading as having advanced degrees in the game of basketball. The war between old-school basketball guys and new-school analytics guys in front offices is largely a fiction, a product of a shift in the way general managers are being hired in the league.While it is too early to assess the tenures of Hennigan, McDonough and other young GMs, and indeed too early to assess the full impact of advanced metrics on the NBA, it is clear that, on average, former NBA players do not have some magical insight that makes them better GMs.
INDIANAPOLIS — Aaron Craft doesn’t get beat often. The Ohio State sophomore guard and Defensive Player of the Year in the Big Ten has earned a reputation for stifling whoever he’s guarding. But when the Buckeyes traveled to Ann Arbor to take on Michigan Feb. 18, Wolverine freshman guard and Big Ten co-Freshman of the Year Trey Burke scored Michigan’s final two buckets. The last one, which came with 11 seconds remaining on a drive to the basket that Craft couldn’t cope with, sealed the Michigan win. Craft’s teammate, sophomore forward Jared Sullinger said OSU’s point guard took the Michigan loss personally. It showed Saturday as the Buckeyes thrashed Michigan, 77-55, in a Big Ten Tournament semifinal game. Third-seeded OSU advances to play top-seeded Michigan State in Sunday’s championship game. Burke was held to just five points on 1-of-11 shooting and committed a career-high eight turnovers. Craft was draped all over the Michigan freshman for most of the afternoon. He drew a charge on a fast break in the first half, continually poked the ball away, and harassed Burke, who was coming off a 30-point performance against Minnesota, all night. “I think you’ve got to give Craft some credit,” said Michigan senior guard Zack Novak. “His on-ball defense was pretty good today.” Craft wasn’t so eager to take the praise though. “Stopping a great player like (Burke) especially with how he was feeling in the game yesterday, it was definitely a team effort tonight,” Craft said. “Just trying not to make it about me against him because that’s not what it’s about.” But Sullinger said Craft’s defensive performance was special. The Buckeyes’ big man and Burke both went to Northland High School and have been playing with each other since grade school. In all of that time, Sullinger said Burke was never as bothered as he was Saturday. “Never,” Sullinger said. “I’ve never seen him that frustrated. I’ve never seen him have this many turnovers. I’ve never seen him shoot this poorly. I’ve never seen that happen and I think Craft frustrated him. You got to give most of the credit to Craft.” Burke wasn’t the only Wolverine to struggle either. As a team, the Wolverines shot just 31 percent from the field, and their 55-point output was more than 11 points below their season average. After the game, the Buckeyes were adamant that the defense was a complete team effort. “Team defense is the biggest thing,” Sullinger said. “Whoever has the best defense that night is going to win the game. We could care less about offense. As long as we keep defending our butts off on the defensive end, we’re fine.” Sophomore guard Lenzelle Smith Jr. said that team defense mentality was apparent. He said his defense on sophomore guard Tim Hardaway Jr. who is Michigan’s second-leading scorer, allowed Craft to avoid helping off of Burke, and the Buckeye big men hedging off of screens eliminated the penetration into the key. “My team came to me before the game started and they said it was going to start with me and I had a big job to do and I had to stop Tim Hardaway,” Smith Jr. said. “I pretty much got off to that in an early start and that helps Aaron. He doesn’t have to help off of his guy as much, which frustrated Trey Burke today. It made him have to force a lot.” Hardaway Jr. made just three of 10 shots from the floor and totaled 13 points. OSU coach Thad Matta agreed with Smith Jr. “This game was definitely was about our defense. We had great activity on the ball and off the ball,” Matta said. “I thought we had great communication challenging shots.” And when OSU defends like that, Michigan coach John Beilein said OSU is as good of a team as he’s ever seen. “I’ve seen some really good teams, this being I think my 20th year as a Division I coach, and played some really good games,” Beilein said. “That’s as good of a game as I’ve ever seen a college team play. Talking about Ohio obviously.” The championship game between OSU and MSU tips at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday.
Instagram influencers pushing “extreme” diets are causing young people to suffer from malnutrition and eating disorders, leading nutritionists have warned after a popular vegan vlogger admitted she fell ill after following her own diet plan. 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. She said that because of her diet, “something wasn’t going right” with her… Yovana Mendoza Ayres, known to her fans as “Rawvana”, has over 10 million followers across Instagram and YouTube – but admitted becoming dangerously unwell as a result of her raw vegan diet and 25-day fasts. The influencer, who posts her “cleanse” and “fast” diet programmes online, was condemned by her fans after a video posted by another YouTuber showed her appearing to eat fish.
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedCummings Lodge fire leaves 2 families homelessJanuary 12, 2017In “latest news”Another home goes up in flames leaving 6 persons homelessFebruary 16, 2017In “latest news”Fire guts East Ruimveldt range houseJuly 13, 2017In “latest news” Police are now investigating the cause of a fire in Middle Street, Georgetown earlier this afternoon, which has now left two persons homeless.Based on reports received, the incident occurred around 14:00hrs on Sunday, as the owner of the lot 183 Middle Street, Georgetown home was eating mangoes in front of his two story wooden and concrete house.The man, Colin Clarke told Inews that while he was standing in front of his yard, he noticed smoke coming from behind the house but wasn’t alarmed “because [he] didn’t think it was coming from [his] home.”Colin ClarkeHowever, as time passed and the smoke got thicker, Clarkes said that he walked towards the entrance of his home but found that it was blanketed by fire.He explained that he tried with all his might to enter the home in order to retrieve his belongings.Clarke, who subsequently called the fire service just before alerting his neighbours related that nothing in the home could have been saved.Fire fighters and neighbours worked diligently to contain the firePublic spirited persons came out and formed a bucket brigade in an attempt to save his home, he said, while noting that even though the members of the Guyana Fire Service worked diligently to save his home, it was completely destroyed by the disastrous blaze.Inews understands that the fire may have started in a bedroom in the bottom flat of the house.Clarke’s wife, with whom he lives, was at church when the incident occurred.
Chris Chibnall is a busy man.Between promoting the revival of his 2014 stage play Worst Wedding Ever and wrapping up the final season of ITV drama Broadchurch, the writer fields inevitable questions about his most high-profile venture yet: Doctor Who.Chibnall’s role as full-time showrunner of the long-running sci-fi program doesn’t officially begin until 2018. But with only a dozen episodes left before Peter Capaldi regenerates into the Doctor’s 13th incarnation, incoming boss Chibnall has some ‘splainin to do.In conversation with the East Anglian Daily Times, the dramatist talked up “raucous” comedy Worst Wedding Ever (on now at the New Wolsey Theater in Ipswich, England). But there’s no escaping the unavoidable.“Just a quick Doctor Who question before you go,” the news reporter said, eliciting an “explosive guffaw” from Chibnall, who remains mum about his new job—and the Thirteenth Doctor.“I can honestly say that nothing has yet been decided,” he said, addressing the very public discussion of who will be next in line for keys to the TARDIS. “I haven’t got my feet under the table yet. … Nothing is ruled out, but I don’t want the casting to be a gimmick, and that’s all I can say.”The character—which many hope will be played by a female and/or black actor (Supergirl star David Harewood has volunteered)—will be treated as any other, Chibnall told The Telegraph last week.“We’ll cast the role in the traditional way: write the script, then go and find the best person for that part in that script,” he said. “The creative possibilities are endless, but I have a very clear sense of what we’re going to do, without even knowing who’s going to play the part.” HBO Max Scores Exclusive ‘Doctor Who’ Streaming RightsJo Tro Do Plo Plo No: ‘Doctor Who’ Welcomes Back Familiar Monster Stay on target
Former Arsenal midfielder Edu is looking forward to returning to familiar surroundings ahead of Brazil’s game with UruguayThe two South American sides will play each other at the Emirates Stadium on November 16 as part of the Brasil Global Tour.Edu, who now works as Brazil’s technical coordinator, can’t wait for the occasion and stated his belief that the Emirates is now a world-class venue, which can host the best sporting events“It will be a great pleasure to go back to the Emirates, a stadium that’s home to a club I’m really fond of,” said Edu, according to Islington Gazette.“I had the opportunity to play for many years with Arsenal and win some important titles.“So, without a doubt, it will be a pleasure to see the red and white colours of Arsenal again in a stadium that is increasingly becoming more important in the world. It’s not the first time we (Brazil) are playing there.Merson believes Arsenal should sign Sancho Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho might be the perfect player to play for the Gunners, according to former England international Paul Merson.Edu made 79 appearances for Arsenal in a four-year stay and was a member of the famous “Invincibles” team that went the entire 2003/04 Premier League unbeaten.The former Valencia and Corinthians midfielder, who also managed 15 caps for Brazil, has many fond memories of Arsenal.“It will be a great pleasure. I remember well that I played my last game alongside great friends like Dennis Bergkamp and other great athletes that were a part of Arsenal’s history,” said Edu.“And just as I said earlier it will be a great pleasure to come back again now with the Brazilian team.“It will be a great honour and I will certainly remember the great moments I had with Arsenal’s supporters, and most of all at the Emirates stadium and at Highbury too.“I am waiting for you all on the 16th, Brazil – Uruguay. It will be a pleasure and an honour to see you all again.”
Southampton chairman Ralph Krueger has revealed that under-fire manager Mark Hughes has the confidence of the club’s board despite their series of poor results this season.With the club 16th in the Premier League table and winless in seven games, Southampton sacked Vice-chairman Les Reed Thursday, and speculation has been rife on the future of manager Mark Hughes.But board chairman Krueger said Hughes and his staff will carry on to turn things around in the club.“We believe in Mark Hughes, he was given a three-year contract and we believe his team will turn results on the pitch around, ” Krueger told Sky Sports.Solskjaer slams Man United’s draw: “We should have won” Andrew Smyth – August 31, 2019 Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was left to rue another missed opportunity as Manchester United were held to a 1-1 draw against 10-man Southampton.“We feel there is a good connection there with the players and a willingness to get this right and to move together in the right direction.“I am confident in the group we have and the potential of this team. We back that fully and everyone is doing their bit to get the W’s (wins) back in the column.“We feel confident we are going to have some good results very quick.”
Part of the problem for b-to-b publishers is that 2009 budgets were set with 2008 expectations. “Going into 2009 we didn’t know what to expect and what we budgeted wasn’t the reality of the market,” says Karl Vontz, director of events for Nielsen’s Adweek Media and CLIO Awards. “We thought we could still grow. Not only did we not grow, it went backwards.”The New RealityMany publishers are adapting their events to new market realities. Nielsen is changing the format of some shows to smaller, more targeted events, such as Social Media Strategies, which focused on using Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter for marketing. “People don’t know how to use these channels yet, and we wound up with standing-room only,” says Vontz, who adds that Nielsen expected 180 people but got 210.For the CLIO Awards, which recognize the best in television commercials, Nielsen is doing a cocktail reception rather than a multi-day conference and multi-hour awards show. It expects 400 attendees. “People get to eat and network and have fun and not get stuck in a three-hour awards show that’s a big yawn,” says Vontz. If there is one area suffering almost as much as print, it’s events. While trade show revenue dropped 3.5 percent in 2008, it fell a whopping 20.1 percent through the first quarter of 2009, according to American Business Media. Reed Exhibitions (which operates independently of Reed Business Information), saw revenue and adjusted operating profits plunge 22 percent and 26 percent respectively in the first half of the year.Nielsen Business Media vp of business development Eric Biener says events haven’t fallen as much as print but when they do, it hurts more. “Even small declines have a huge impact on our infrastructure,” he adds. Hanley Wood enjoyed a record year for its events in 2008 but is experiencing significant declines in 2009 (two long-time executives, exhibitions group president Galen Poss and executive vice president Michael Green, left the company in June). However, it’s 2010 that really concerns CEO Frank Anton.“The real bad news is that the business in 2010 will take further hits in both exhibit space and attendance, and we’re budgeting accordingly—almost all of the big shows will suffer double digit declines in revenue and earnings,” he adds. “This will be the first time our shows have declined in a meaningful and painful way.” Vontz thinks Nielsen has adapted for 2010. “We’re being conservative with numbers and we’re not expecting existing events to grow,” he says. “We’re adding new events for revenue growth. We’re going into 2010 feeling like we can manage this without being in this panic of ‘cut-cut-cut.’ We’re not anticipating the economy to start recovering but if it does, it’s a bonus for us.”United Business Media’s Everything Channel is having to rethink its approach as well. “Based on the way people got squeezed this year, marketers are going into 2010 with compromised budgets,” says Nancy Hammervik, senior vice president and managing director of Everything Channel Events. “One of the positive outcomes of a challenging market is that it causes you to think smarter. You get as tight as you can while evaluating everything you do.”Hammervik says publishers can’t expect to grow by existing clients spending more. “Vendors are still coming but they’re spending less money and starting to understand how to work an event where they don’t take advantage of every sponsorship opportunity but just work harder to meet everybody. Our August XChange event is our largest—and was up in the number of vendors but down in the amount of spending.”Still, Hammervik thinks her group outperformed most b-to-b events thanks to its hosted model, in which the publisher qualifies a very specific audience and guarantees deliverability by flying out buyers to meet with vendors. “The conferences are smaller but they deliver higher ROI.”Time To Re-Evaluate Event Life Cycles? Both Vontz and Hammervik are looking to new events and repackaging of existing events for revenue growth next year. That includes assessing which legacy events have run their course. “That’s something we’ve never really had to do before,” says Hammervik.The Adweek group is looking to launch a new event around emerging topics such as marketing to gay and lesbian consumers while pulling back on events around mature topics, such as marketing to Hispanics. “There are so many companies with departments for marketing to Hispanics but not many for marketing to gays and lesbians,” says Vontz. “We’ve been much more aggressive about canceling events on the downslide in favor of events that might be hot next year. In the past, we may have said, ‘It’s still profitable, let’s keep doing it.’”For Hammervik, even the hosted model that continued to perform in 2009 is being scaled back in favor of events that can produce larger margins. “The thing about hosted models is they don’t scale,” she adds. “The bigger they get, the more they cost. The way you grow is to do more—we went from six events to 24. The margin for hosted events is typically half your revenue. At first that sounds great: if you do a $2 million event, you make $1 million. But if you have a $500,000 event, it’s $250,000 to just recruit and host.” Now, Hammervik wants to keep the hosted model where appropriate but focus on gearing up for larger events with larger profit margins. “If we cut back on hosted events we can allow people to focus on bigger events that drive margins. My strategy for next year is if we can roll smaller events into bigger events, and every dollar hits the bottom line, anything we sell in will go to the bottom line.”Everything Channel is rolling out a series of regional events around the emerging category of “cloud computing.” ”We did something similar five years ago with managed services—people didn’t really understand what it was about and we responded with road shows,” Hammervik says. “We’re rolling out at least six one-day regional events. We’re being more cautious about not doing three-day events. That makes it easier for attendees and vendors to manage.” The publisher will also launch a series of events recognizing women executives in high tech, including a “Top 100 Women” channel. The program will include three events for women executives including a three-day conference and two one-day awards shows on the East and West Coasts. Everything Channel will also take a similar approach recognizing the Top 100 CIOs.Everything Channel has had a standalone channel for the Latin American community and did hosted events that put buyers and sellers together in Miami. “It’s been five years, it matches the budgets vendors will spend on second or third tier emerging markets, but it requires a lot of energy and resources without offering a lot of return on margin,” says Hammervik Everything Channel will fold its XChange Latin America into XChange Americas, which will also include a separate track for Canadian buyers and sellers. The publisher is taking a similar approach with its Project & Portfolio Management event which it will fold into a larger mid-market event. “This is a very high-end, focused software event but the opportunity is waning,” says Hammervik. “Most enterprise companies now have a significant enterprise software system. We spend a disproportionate time of energy on recruiting and selling for that event. Additional events, including two retail technology shows, will be rolled into other channel events. Folding four events—two retail XChanges, the Latin America XChange and PPM—into other events will save Everything Channel almost $4 million in expenses next year, according to Hammervik. Still, she recognizes that saving on expenses doesn’t equal generating revenue. “We all realize that with co-locating events, one plus one plus one will never equal three,” Hammervik adds. “Vendors won’t spend what they did at an individual event. If we combine XChange Latin America with the U.S. event, it may equal one and a half out of two. We’ll lose 50 percent on revenue, but we’re saving significantly on expenses.”Growth From Custom, Virtual EventsHammervik is forecasting a 10 percent increase in revenue for her group in 2010, driven by new standalone events but also a new series of custom event services. “We have been doing that on the side but we’re making a significant investment next year in staff and marketing to try to make it a big business.”While marketers have increasingly taken on publishing duties for themselves—including events, Webinars, even magazines—Hammervik sees an opportunity for publishers to win that business back. “Vendors themselves have lost headcount and resources. Their core competency is making and selling technology, not doing events. We think half our growth next year will come from custom event services.”Everything Channel is also moving aggressively into offering Web services around live events as both a preview and community-builder. “A month before the live event, the virtual event will be active,” Hammervik says. “Sponsors can pre-qualify attendees and schedule live meetings with prospects.” Hammervik is looking at charging an additional $5,000-$10,000 to add virtual components to live event sponsorships. “If we have 100 vendors, that will be a significant revenue stream,” she says.
Baba Ramdev may face problems in Uttarakhand as findings from an inquiry conducted by the state Director General (DG) Health and law department are against the yoga guru for selling the controversial putrajeevak beej medicine, which allegedly “promises” a male child.Confirming the report as negative, Principal Secretary Health Om Prakash said that the details have been sent to Chief Minister Harish Rawat.”I can only say that the inquiry report on Putrajeevak medicine was against Ramdev. We have sent the report to the Chief Minister,” Business Standard quoted Prakash as saying. However, he refused to disclose further details.The controversy over the putrajeevak beej medicine erupted last year after Janata Dal (United) MP K C Tyagi in the Rajya Sabha had demanded an action against Ramdev for selling the medicine.Following the controversy, the Centre had directed the Uttarakhand government to probe the issue. The state government had formed a three member committee headed by Drug Controller Ayush P D Chamoli to hold an inquiry.But the report submitted by the Chamoli committee gave a “clean chit” to Ramdev. The report went in favour of his claim that the medicine’s name was “in accordance” with the ayurvedic books and ancient literature.”The botanical name of the medicine is putrajeeva roxburghi. It is called putrajeevak in Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati and other languages,” Ramdev had said, while defending his medicine.Later, the state government asked the D G Health and state law department to submit a report on the medicine which turned out to be negative, said Prakash.
How humans and robots work side-by-side in Amazon fulfillment centers Beware the next time someone borrows your cell phone or you leave it unattended. You may become the next victim of having all your cell phone data copied to the CSI Stick. How valuable and confidential is the data on your cell phone? Unless you are actually watching the person use your cell phone, they might just be plugging a CSI Stick into your phones data-port to grab all your personal information. There is a new electronic device that captures ALL the data from a cell phone, even deleted data that has not be overwritten. The device is called Cellular Seizure Investigation Stick or CSI Stick for short. The device is primary aimed for Law Enforcement and Security Professionals but can be purchased by anyone.At a recent Techno-Security conference, held in Myrtle Beach, Florida, over 1500 Law Enforcement and Security Professionals were briefed on the latest cyber-security vulnerabilities. The CSI Stick caught the attention of many because it can grab all data from a cell phone very quickly.The CSI Stick is about the size of a BIC lighter and its tip is color coded to work with certain model cell phones. By plugging the CSI Stick into the data/charging port of a cell phone, it can quickly download all e-mails, instant messages, dialed numbers, phone books and everything else stored in memory. It´s most likely that this device will find wide acceptance by parents who want to monitor what their children are doing with their cell phones. The CSI Stick will give parents the capability of reviewing all instant messages, contacts, and incoming and outgoing calls on their child´s cell phone. The CSI Stick sells for $200 and requires Paraben´s Device Seizure or DS Lite software installed on your computer. The software deciphers the encrypted data and presents it on your computer in a readable format. The CSI Stick is sold by Paraben Corporation and is labeled as “The Portable Cell Phone Forensic and Data Gathering Tool”. The CSI Stick opens the world of digital forensics to anyone that needs to gather forensic quality data from cell phones.The CSI Stick currently supports certain Motorola and Samsung cell phone models with additional models coming soon. Paraben´s CSI Stick includes everything you need to acquire valuable cell phone data.So the next time someone asks you to borrow your cell phone because theirs is not working; be sure you are watching them use your phone and that there is nothing connected to it.via: CNET News and CSISTICK.COM Citation: Paraben’s CSI Stick Copies Data from Cell Phones (2008, September 1) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-09-paraben-csi-cell.html Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
Citation: Oldest pregnant lizard fossil discovered (2011, July 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-07-oldest-pregnant-lizard-fossil.html The fossil was discovered by Susan Evans, a professor from the University College London Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, in the Jehol region of Northeast China. This area has revealed hundreds of dinosaur, amphibian, reptile, fish, bird, mammal, invertebrate and plant fossils. The lizard in this case has been identified as Yabeinosaurus which scientists believe to be similar to the gecko. Evans did not pay much attention to the fossil when it was first discovered but Yuan Wang from the Chinese Academy of Sciences examined the fossil and discovered 15 tiny fossilized embryos.The embryos were almost fully developed and the researchers believe that the foot-long mother died only a few days before she would have given birth.This discovery reveals that some lizards were giving birth to live young in the Early Cretaceous period. Previous fossils have shown that some marine lizards gave birth to live young but this is the first primarily land lizard to be discovered. “We previously thought that lizards adapted to live birth after mammals, but now it looks like it happened at roughly the same kind of time. This specimen is the oldest we have seen, which implies physiological adaptations, like adequate blood supply to the embryos and very thin shells – or no shells at all – to allow oxygen supply, evolved very early on,” said Professor Susan Evans.For lizards the added weight throughout the gestational period can limit their movement and ability to flee from predators. This lizard was believed to have lived on a river bank or somewhere close to water where it was able to flee to water in order to move easier.”We do know that this lizard lived near to water and we think it likely that they could swim even though they primarily lived on land. This would make sense as a pregnant lizard would be less constrained by carrying offspring – she’d be able to escape into water if a hungry dinosaur came along!” she added. © 2010 PhysOrg.com Yabeinosaurus tenuis fossil on display at the Beijing Museum of Natural History. Image: Wikipedia. The pregnant gravid female Yabeinosaurus fossil. Credit: Susan Evans/UCL Researchers link an African lizard fossil in Africa with the Komodo dragon in Indonesia (PhysOrg.com) — A new paper published in Naturwissenschaft reveals a fossil from 120 million years ago that proves that some lizards were not laying eggs but rather giving birth to live young. Explore further More information: A gravid lizard from the Cretaceous of China and the early history of squamate viviparity, by Yuan Wang and Susan E. Evans, Naturwissenschaft, DOI:10.1007/s00114-011-0820-1AbstractAlthough viviparity is most often associated with mammals, roughly one fifth of extant squamate reptiles give birth to live young. Phylogenetic analyses indicate that the trait evolved more than 100 times within Squamata, a frequency greater than that of all other vertebrate clades combined. However, there is debate as to the antiquity of the trait and, until now, the only direct fossil evidence of squamate viviparity was in Late Cretaceous mosasauroids, specialised marine lizards without modern equivalents. Here, we document viviparity in a specimen of a more generalised lizard, Yabeinosaurus, from the Early Cretaceous of China. The gravid female contains more than 15 young at a level of skeletal development corresponding to that of late embryos of living viviparous lizards. This specimen documents the first occurrence of viviparity in a fossil reptile that was largely terrestrial in life, and extends the temporal distribution of the trait in squamates by at least 30 Ma. As Yabeinosaurus occupies a relatively basal position within crown-group squamates, it suggests that the anatomical and physiological preconditions for viviparity arose early within Squamata. 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.
Kolkata: A five-year -old girl was allegedly raped and murdered by a middle aged person at Narendrapur in South 24 Parganas a week ago and the body was in a bushy area. The accused was arrested on Saturday and the body was recovered later.According to sources, on July 15, victim’s family members who are residents of Kheyadah in Narendrapur could not found their daughter for more than two hours in the morning. After searching for her till evening the tribal couple went to Narendrapur police station and sought immediate action. They also stated that from their neighbours they came to know that the girl was seen with a person identified as Azgar Ali, who is also a resident of the same area. After a missing diary was lodged and victim’s parents doubted Ali was their daughter’s kidnapper. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataFollowing the complaint lodged sleuths raided Ali’s house and found that he was not home. Thus the doubt grew more. During a check with the database, police found that Ali was arrested two years ago in a snatching case. At that time he was arrested from Park Circus railway station after a few days of search. Despite repeated searches, police failed to trace Ali and locals got furious. One day they even put up a road blockade protesting the police inaction. A few days ago sleuths decided to initiate strict vigil in and around the Sealdah South Section railway stations. On Saturday evening, police got a source information that Ali was seen in Sealdah railway station. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateWithout wasting any time, police rushed to Sealdah railway station and arrested Ali. Later Ali shown the police personnel where he dumped the child’s body. During interrogation, Ali confessed that he lured the child by promising to give a guava and took her to a bushy area. There he raped the child and strangled her to death. Ali was produced before the Baruipur Court on Sunday and was remanded to judicial custody for one day as he needs to be produced before the Special Judge, Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, which remains closed on Sundays. He was again produced before the Special Judge, POCSO Act on Monday and was remanded to police custody.
Guests:Greg Jennings – FS1 NFL Analyst is in-studio talking New England/Philly; how Philly can keep the Pats D off balance with formations; and if the Vikings Super Bowl window is closed.Peter King – Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the MMQB joins the show to explain why the Pats 3rd and 18 conversion was the play of the game; and if Case Keenum will play another down for Minnesota.Jason Whitlock – Co-host of Speak for Yourself is in-studio to talk Tom Brady’s unparalleled dedication to the game. New England’s system always overcomes athletesJacksonville had the more talented roster than New England, but when the dust settled it was the Patriots headed to yet another Super Bowl. The Jaguars were brash and cocky, much like Atlanta and Seattle before them, but when the game was on the line it was the Patriots machine-like system was superior to the Jags more talented roster.It’s been proven time and time again that when other teams built on athletes get tired, Belichick’s system doesn’t. The Jags are just the latest team to prove it.The Vikings won’t be back next yearJust a week after “The Minneapolis Miracle,” the Vikings got run off the field against the Eagles, and Colin doesn’t expect to see them back playing for a Super Bowl berth this time next year.Minnesota finished the regular season at 13-3, but everything broke right. From miracle touchdowns, to playing in a division without Aaron Rodgers, and a weak schedule, everything that could go their way, did. Next year, it’s not clear who will be their quarterback, Rodgers is back in the division, and they’ll have one of the toughest schedules in the league.Some teams have a large window to contend, but most teams only get one run when everything comes together. Colin thinks the Vikings had their chance, and they blew it.Also:Where Colin was right, where Colin was wrong from NFL Conference Championship weekend
You can get a 27-inch, 1080p FreeSync monitor from Dell at an amazingly low price of just $150 as well as Beats Solo3 Wireless headphones for $197.Grab a FreeSync Monitor for $150 and $100 Off the Beats Solo3 Wireless – Limited Time Deals OnlyGreat deals are hard to come buy and what we have today is no exception. One is a 27-inch 1080p monitor from Dell that happens to be FreeSync, while the other one is a pair of headphones from Beats that retail for $300 on a regular day.Dell 27-inch 1080p FreeSync Monitor – Regular price $250, Now just $150 Share Tweet Submit Though 1080p might not sound like much by today’s standards, but when you combine it with a 27-inch panel that is FreeSync, that’s where things start to get interesting. It’s a perfect panel to buy right away if you are planning to put together a budget gaming rig, or just a regular PC to get some serious work done.Buy Dell 27-inch 1080p FreeSync Monitor [Amazon link]Beats Solo3 Wireless Headphones – Regular price $300, Now just $197 Everyone might not agree with the sound of Beats, but for some, they are the go-to headphones for listening to music. The Solo3 is exceptional in a lot of ways and feature Apple’s W1 chip, enabling easy pairing with iOS devices and syncing across iCloud. That’s not all, they look cool too and are available in multiple color options.Buy Beats Solo3 Wireless Headphones [eBay link]While you are at it, you might want to check out the mobile accessory deals of the day as well.
Aussies are keeping Christmas vacations familiar and “safer” this year, with Australia’s favourite local summer holiday spots reporting 100 percent occupancy rates over the festive season.According to real estate group Raine & Horne chief executive Angus Raine, Aussies are snubbing cheap international airfares and the strong Australian dollar and are opting for “the tradition and relative safety of a summer holiday in Australia”.Welcoming the renewed commitment to local stays include NSW North Coast, Central Coast, Palm Beach, the Gold Coast and Port Douglas.Raine & Horne Port Douglas and Mossman principal David Cotton explained holiday bookings have maintained a steady stream this summer with 60 percent and 70 percent occupany for Christmas, while principal of Yamba Denise Jillett explained New Year’s Eve and first week of January are at 100 percent occupancy in the North Coast.”These vacancies came about as a result of cancellations, so holiday makers considering Yamba need to be quick,” Ms Jillett highlighted.”Modern two bedroom apartments close to the beach are available from $1,600 for the week plus booking fee.”Brett Hunter from Terrigal-Avoca Beach added that the company has secured 20 percent more revenue for its owners in the Central Coast over the last six months and said the results were achieved through an altered approach to holiday lettings.”Knowing we can’t improve on a 100% result, instead we have focused on helping people extend their vacations before and after the Christmas period, as well as assisting them with shorter stays of perhaps three or four days on multiple occasions,” Mr Hunter said. What are your plans this Christmas, exchanging presents down under or riding sleigh bells overseas? Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J
American Express expands growing Global Lounge CollectionAmerican Express expands growing Global Lounge CollectionAmerican Express (NYSE:AXP) today announced the expansion of its signature airport lounge network, The Centurion Lounge, with two new locations in Hong Kong and Philadelphia International Airports. Hong Kong, which opens on October 2nd, marks the first Centurion lounge in Asia, and Philadelphia, opening in late October, marks the 8th U.S. location of this growing network of premium airport retreats. “We are excited to introduce our first Centurion Lounge in Hong Kong, which continues to be a top destination for our Card Members and an epicenter for contemporary culture,” said Janey Whiteside, executive vice president and general manager of Global Charge Products, Benefits & Services, American Express. “We’re equally thrilled to expand our offerings in the U.S. with the opening of a Centurion Lounge location in the growing travel hub of Philadelphia. These two new additions to our Centurion Lounge offerings and broader Global Lounge Collection build on our ongoing commitment to provide our increasingly global Card Members with access to premium travel benefits and experiences.”The Centurion Lounge is the signature lounge program within the broader American Express Global Lounge CollectionSM, which provides Platinum Card® and Centurion Members with access to the most lounges across the globe compared to other U.S. credit cards, including access to more than 1,100 lounges around the world, in 500 plus cities, across 120 countries and counting.The Centurion Lounge at Hong Kong International AirportOpening on October 2nd, The Centurion Lounge in Hong Kong International Airport is located in Terminal 1. Covering approximately 8,000 square feet, the lounge offers an expansive escape for Card Members to relax, refresh and reboot. The space features a unique selection of premium amenities, food and beverages inspired by the local culture.Amenities include:A premium buffet featuring both locally and internationally inspired dishes.Example menu items include French toast with maple syrup and mixed berry compote, assorted Dim Sum baskets, stir-fried rice with eggs, mushrooms and vegetables, chicken congee, gnocchi with Pomodoro sauce, pan fried sole fillet with caper cream sauce, and vanilla mango panna cotta.A complimentary full bar with custom cocktails created by renowned mixologist Jim Meehan and wine selections handpicked by renowned wine authority Anthony Giglio*Private phone areas and a meeting room, plus a workspace outfitted with a computer barRestrooms and a private shower suite outfitted with L’Occitane amenitiesA private area exclusively available for Centurion Members and their guests, which will offer access to a dedicated Member Services Professional to help with any specific travel, reservation or card services requestsThe private Centurion area will also feature an a la carte menu designed by Michelin star chef, Lau Yiu Fai of Yan Toh Heen at the InterContinental Hong Kong. Chef Lau’s menu will offer Cantonese dishes such as baked pork in puff pastry, crispy spring rolls with kimchi and pork, crispy fresh prawns with black truffles, braised wagyu beef cheek and turnip, barbecued pork with honey and steamed rice, and baked egg tartlettes with bird’s nest, among others.The Centurion Lounge at Philadelphia International AirportIn the coming weeks, American Express will open a new 6,300 square foot Centurion Lounge located in Terminal A West of Philadelphia International Airport. In this new lounge Card Members can enjoy amenities including:An Israeli-inspired food menu designed by four-time James Beard Award winning Israeli Cuisine Pioneer, Chef Michael SolomonovA complimentary full bar with custom cocktails created by renowned mixologist Jim Meehan and wine selections handpicked by renowned wine authority Anthony Giglio*Floor-to-ceiling windows with expansive internal and external viewsEssentials for business and leisure travelers alike, including dedicated workspaces, power outlets, private phone areas, comfortable seating and access to high-speed Wi-FiAmerican Express is excited to partner with Chef Michael Solomonov, the executive chef and co-owner of Philadelphia’s pioneering Israeli restaurant Zahav, to bring some of his favorite flavors to The Centurion Lounge in Philadelphia. Some of the items on Solomonov’s lounge menu include challah French toast with tehina and blackberries, Israeli salad with feta, kale tabbouleh with apples and pomegranate, Bulgarian kebabs with red pepper and white bean salad, and malabi with coconut and passionfruit.“We are extremely honored to be a part of the American Express Centurion Lounge family and excited to help make their newest lounge an oasis of hospitality for Philadelphia travelers,” said Chef Michael Solomonov. “It’s such an exciting time to be a Philadelphian, and I am grateful for the opportunity to show visitors to our historic town what the City of Brotherly Love is all about.”The two new lounges in Hong Kong and Philadelphia are the latest openings in American Express’ network of Centurion Lounges, which also includes locations at New York’s LaGuardia Airport, Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport, Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, San Francisco International Airport, Miami International Airport, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and Houston’s George Bush International Airport.In addition to the new locations, The Centurion Lounge at the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport will be relocating to a larger space in Terminal D, opening in the first half of 2018. The new space will be approximately 3,000 square feet larger than the original space and will include additional amenities such as telephone rooms, a private mother’s room and an additional shower suite.Access to The Centurion Lounge is complimentary and exclusive for Platinum Card and Centurion Members. Platinum Card Members may enter with up to two travel companions at no additional charge. Centurion Members may enter with their immediate family or up to two travel companions. Platinum Card or Centurion Members may purchase a one-day pass to The Centurion Lounge for additional guests for $50.**Access to The Centurion Lounge and the broader Global Lounge Collection is among an expansive suite of benefits designed to create a more seamless travel experience for Platinum Card and Centurion Members. The Global Lounge Collection includes access to American Express Centurion Lounges, international American Express lounges, Delta Sky Club® for Card Members flying on Delta, Priority PassTM Select Lounges upon enrollment, Airspace Lounges and MAG U.S. Escape Lounges. Card Members can find a loungeat the Global Lounge Collection website or by using the Amex Mobile app.Visit http://americanexpress.com/platinum for more about the Platinum Card.Source = American Express
Geneva, Switzerland — Ateliers deMonaco launched as a new independent watch manufacturer based in Monaco. The new brand is backed by Peter and Aletta Stas, the owners of Swiss brands Frederique Constant and Alpina, Dr. Stas told Elite Traveler in an exclusive interview here.Ateliers deMonaco will be operated independently with the goal of “creating iconic timepieces that are derived from the passion to challenge existing conventions and to leave a legacy.” The house will produce up to 30 pieces this year with a goal of growing to 130 pieces annual production with prices starting at 88,000 swiss francs.www.ateliers-demonaco.com