first_img Preview Buy Tickets The fourth set got off to the same sea-saw start that the others did, but this time the Blues had a new energy. The Badgers edged them to the technical timeout, 16-15. However, Toronto persisted, taking the fourth and final set 25-22 to win the game 3-1. UP NEXT: The Blues are back on the court next Saturday (Nov. 3) as they host the Queen’s Gaels. Opening serve is set for 8:00 p.m., at the Athletic Centre Sports Gym.For more information, scores and highlights on your favourite U of T athletes and teams, please visit Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Instagram, SnapChat and Facebook for the latest and greatest in Varsity Blues intercollegiate athletics.Print Friendly Version Next Match: Queen’s University 11/3/2018 | 12:00 p.m. TORONTO STATS: Third-year outside hitter Nicholas Trewern led the Blues, finishing with 18 points from 15 kills and one service ace, and added nine digs on the night. The University of Toronto Varsity Blues men’s volleyball team won 3-1 (25-22, 17-25, 25-22, 25-22) versus the Brock Badgers on Saturday night (Oct. 27) at the Athletic Centre Sports Gym.  Watch Live Full Schedule Roster Austin Valjas amassed 13 points, tallying eight kills and four solo blocks.Veteran setter Jordan Figueira tallied a game-high 38 assists and added a team-high 12 digs in the win. HOW IT HAPPENED: When it looked like the Badgers were running away with the first set, leading 16-10 at the technical timeout, the Blues battled back, tying it at 22 and going on to win 25-22. Matchup History Outside hitter Chris Towe also tallied a team-leading 18 points, off of 14 kills and two service aces. The Badgers were first to 16 in the third set, but the Blues only trailed by three. They battled it through and won the set 25-22. That would set the tone for the rest of the match as a back-and-forth battle ensued, keeping the crowd on their feet. The Badgers got out to a 16-11 lead in the second set and ran with it, taking it 25-17 to even the game at one.last_img read more

Shipton, Dyck, Clothier reflect on years being coached by and working alongside Broncos coach Darcy Haugan

first_imgDyck said the second chance was a game-changer for him, and that he began to take the lessons Haugan was teaching his players to heart. “I really learned to embrace his standpoint on how the community comes first for a Junior team like this. You never embarrass the team, you never embarrass the community. Through all this, we really created a tight bond and a long-lasting friendship. That season I came back and won Goalie of the Year that season for the league. That was the first year we had won the cup with the Navs in, I think, six years. That was pretty special to have been a part of that after everything that happened the previous year.”After taking a year off due to an injury, Dyck said Haugan offered him a position as the team’s goaltending coach, spending the summer talking about the upcoming season. However, the two wouldn’t end up coaching together after Haugan was hired as the Broncos’ head coach on short notice. Dyck said that the atmosphere Haugan created in the team’s locker room was second-to-none.“I’ve become friends with lots of people we played against in those years, and they all knew it, they all knew we had an advantage with the coaching staff that we had. That was headed by Darcy. The character he instilled within all of us. He just showed us how much more there is to life than what happens on the ice. As compassionate and competitive as he was and as bad as he wanted to win, character was always Number One. That’s something we’ll carry for the rest of our lives.” Fort St. John Huskies’ General Manager Jeremy Clothier said that Haugan’s loss has touched many in the Peace Region. Advertisement “You could tell he loved the game of hockey when he first started mentioning the team and the players, you could tell he loved his job and loved being around the guys.”He said that he has particularly fond memories of team dinners at Haugan’s house, and all of his stories from his days playing hockey. 25-year-old Bud Dyck, who played in goal under Haugan when he was bench boss of the Navigators for two years, remembers how he gave him a second chance after he was tossed from the team during his first season for admittedly acting rebellious.“I don’t know if I thought I deserved my spot for no reason or it was just arrogance, I was being late for practices, I’d miss the bus for road trips on a couple occasions. I can’t believe the length of the leash he gave me to begin with, but it just all added up and I ended up getting cut obviously from the team for all this stuff. I didn’t handle it very well. Darcy described it as a ‘messy divorce’ the way it went down. The following season, they were in need of goalies at the start of the year. In large part due to assistant coach Mike Fosty, Darcy agreed to give me another shot that year.”Advertisement FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — While Canada and the rest of the hockey world mourn the loss of 15 members of the Humboldt Broncos in a crash last Friday night, former players colleagues and rivals are remembering the team’s bench boss and the positive impact he had on their lives.Forty-two year-old Darcy Haugan was among 15 members of the Broncos that perished when their bus collided with a semi-truck while en route to Game 5 of their playoff series against the Nipawin Hawks late Friday afternoon. Haugan had served as the team’s head coach since joining shortly before the 2015-2016 hockey season. Prior to that, he coached the Peace River-based North Peace Navigators of the NWJHL for over 10 years.Darcy Haugan during his time coaching the North Peace Navigators. Photo by: North Peace Navigators/Facebook- Advertisement -Wesley Shipton, who recently won the NWJHL’s scoring title with the Dawson Creek Jr. Canucks for the second year in a row, played his first four Junior hockey games with the Grande Prairie Storm before joining the Broncos for the remainder of the 2015-16 season. The Jr. C’s assistant captain said he first found out about the tragedy, like many, via social media. Wesley Shipton in a Humboldt Broncos team photo from 2015. Photo by SJHL Wesley Shipton in a Humboldt Broncos team photo from 2015. Photo by SJHL Wesley Shipton and Logan Schatz while playing together with the Humboldt Broncos in 2015-2016. Supplied photo. Wesley Shipton and Logan Schatz while playing together with the Humboldt Broncos in 2015-2016. Supplied photo. The Humboldt Broncos' Wesley Shipton and former teammate Tristan Hermanson in action three seasons ago. Photo by Christopher Lee/Humboldt Journal The Humboldt Broncos’ Wesley Shipton and former teammate Tristan Hermanson in action three seasons ago. Photo by Christopher Lee/Humboldt Journal “I found out by something on Twitter, and then I messaged some of my old teammates right away to find out more,” said Shipton. “Riding a bus you always feel so safe you never think anything like this could happen. Some of my best memories come on the bus: bus scrums, rookie idol, story time in the back of the bus, the memories you make with all your teammates, you never think anything like this could ever happen.”The Dawson Creek native, who turned 21 last month, said Haugan made a solid impression on him as coach as soon as he joined the team.Advertisementcenter_img “There’s a lot of shock and disbelief that it actually happened. I was a pretty close friends with Darcy through coaching and through his wife who I went to high school with, to [Huskies’ assistant coach Todd Alexander] playing in the SJHL,” said Clothier. “I know that his passion for the game was way deeper than just his record. His views were to grow everyone around him into a better person on the ice and in life.When I started my ventures in hockey I could not think of another organization that I wanted to mimic but the North Peace Navigators and the way that Darcy ran his team. Demanding respect for both players and the game, he was an outstanding coach and mentor to many including me,” he said in a post on his Facebook page.The Humboldt Broncos in a team photo published in March. Photo by Humboldt Broncos/TwitterShipton also spoke about three former teammates he played with that season who were also involved in the crash: 18-year-old Xavier Labelle, 20-year-old Logan Schatz, and 21-year-old Logan Boulet. Schatz, who served as the Broncos’ captain for the past two seasons, and Boulet, whose organs were donated after he was taken off life support Saturday afternoon, both died. Labelle, who was previously misidentified by the Saskatchewan Coroner’s office as having died in the crash, was confirmed to have survived the collision. 18-year-old Humboldt Broncos player Xavier Labelle. Photo by SJHL 18-year-old Humboldt Broncos player Xavier Labelle. Photo by SJHL 21-year-old Humboldt Broncos player Logan Boulet. Photo by SJHL 21-year-old Humboldt Broncos player Logan Boulet. Photo by SJHL 20-year-old Humboldt Broncos captain Logan Schatz. Photo by SJHL 20-year-old Humboldt Broncos captain Logan Schatz. Photo by SJHL “Logan Schatz was an awesome person and down to Earth guy. Such a talented athlete who could always make you smile. Logan Boulet was one of the greatest guys I’ve ever had the chance to play with, so down to earth and always looking out for others before himself. I didn’t know Xavier very well but you could just tell he was a great person by the way he carried himself. All three were great hockey players, but even better people.”Advertisementlast_img read more

Local heroines in the spotlight

first_imgThe graves of Helen Joseph, Lilian Ngoyiand Charlotte Maxeke will be declared national heritage sites by the departmentof arts and culture and the South AfricanHeritage Resources Agency on 20 August (Image: Nosimilo Ramela) MEDIA CONTACTS • Mack Lewele Department of Arts and Culture +27 82 450 5076 or +27 012 441 3083 RELATED ARTICLES • African women forging ahead in IT • SA women take the lead • SA women in the spotlight • Media awards for SA womenNosimilo RamelaIn celebration of Women’s Month in South Africa, the Department of Arts and Culture has launched a number of initiatives to honour female icons who’ve helped shape a more democratic society.Women’s Month is always held in August, with a public holiday on the ninth, to pay tribute to the more than 20 000 South African women who marched to the Union Buildings on that date in 1956 to protest against unjust pass laws, which enforced racial segregation.This peaceful demonstration was led by apartheid activists Lilian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Rahima Moosa and Sophie de Bruyn, and put women at the forefront of the political struggle.“Through their actions, they helped to lay the foundations for the building of a non-racial, non-sexist and democratic country,” said Minister of Arts and Culture Lulu Xingwana.She was speaking at her department’s Women’s Month launch at The Rosebank Hotel, Johannesburg, on 3 August 2010.Women have always played a central role in the socio-economic development of society, but their roles have often been overlooked, the minister said.“The programmes we are launching are to declare that women also made a contribution.”Graves become heritage sitesThe department and the South African Heritage Resources Agency will declare the graves of Joseph, Ngoyi and fellow freedom fighter Charlotte Maxeke national heritage sites on 20 August. “This is part of the national legacy projects which honour the forgotten and unsung heroines of the liberation struggle,” said Xingwana.The ceremony will take place in Soweto, where Joseph and Ngoyi are buried. “The programme will include a church service, speeches and the unveiling of site plaques,” the minister added.Dulcie September Memorial LectureA day before this ceremony on 19 August, the department, in partnership with the University of the Western Cape, will host a memorial lecture in the name of another anti-apartheid icon, Dulcie September, who was assassinated in 1988 while in exile in France.“Through this lecture the government acknowledges her contribution towards the liberation of the people of South Africa,” said Xingwana.The lecture will be delivered by award-winning British writer and editor Margaret Busby, with guest speakers Dr John Daniel – a researcher from the Human Sciences Research Council – and South African ambassador to the US, Barbra Masekela.Xingwana said this lecture was a symbol of her department’s commitment to women: “We constantly see lectures recognising male heroes and rarely do we have lectures about women.”Women writers unite“We will host a women writers’ symposium under the theme Women’s words, African worlds, renewing a dialogue between African women writers and women of African descent,” Xingwana said at the launch.The gathering will take place from 25 to 26 August at two Johannesburg venues: the Windybrow Theatre and Museum Africa. It will focus on fiction and non-fiction writing, journalism and the formation of an African Women Writers’ Network.Invited writers who will participate in the symposium include Tsitsi Dangarembga of Zimbabwe, Lola Shoneyin of Nigeria, Shailja Patel of Kenya and Lauretta Ngcobo, Miriam Tlali and Elinor Sisulu from South Africa.Sarah Bartmann rememberedTo reaffirm the often marginalised history, heritage and culture of the indigenous Khoi and San Bushmen of South Africa, the department will unveil the design for the Sarah Bartmann Centre of Remembrance, on the 22 August in Hankey, in the Eastern Cape province.Bartmann was a Khoi slave who was lured to London in 1810 and put on show as a “scientific curiosity”, owing to her physical features that were perceived by Europeans as “freakish”.She was later moved to Paris, where she was exhibited by an animal trainer in severely degrading displays intended for public amusement.She died in France in December 1815 and her remains were exhibited in a museum there until 1974.Years later, then president of South Africa Nelson Mandela requested that her remains be returned. This was done, and on 9 August 2002 Bartmann was buried in Hankey, the town of her birth.SA women shine at Shanghai expoThe country is currently taking part in the six-month-long Shanghai World Exhibition, for which the Department of Arts and Culture developed a programme to showcase the talents of South African women artists and performers.Each country participating in the Shanghai Exhibition is allocated a national day – and South Africa has chosen 9 August. “As part of celebrating our national day we will hoist the South African flag,” said Xingwana.Prominent South African female musicians, including Debra Fraser, Loveline Madumo, Sibongile Khumalo and Thandiswa Mazwai, will perform at the event.Beyond Women’s MonthAll programmes launched will be sustained beyond the month of August to help empower and inspire women, Xingwana said, adding that “freedom is not complete until women are free from all forms of abuse, poverty, and deprivation”.last_img read more

Adobe Takes Flex Open Source

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts Adobe Systems announced last night that they will be open sourcing their Adobe Flex framework so developers can access their source code to enhance its ability to create Rich Internet applications. The Flex SDK and docs will be available through the Mozilla Public License. Adobe Flex, initially released in 2004 by Macromedia, and available since 2006 as a free SDK from Adobe, is a set of technologies to support the development of RIAs, web apps with the features and functionality that mimic traditional desktop applications.By open sourcing the technology, Adobe is realizing the potential of embracing the developer community. By providing open tools they are helping to foster a developer environment that can result in the creation of cool features and functionality and further developer the framework to suit developer needs. Other open source projects from Adobe include the contribution of source code for ActionScript Virtual Machine to the Mozilla Foundation and the open source WebKit engine in the Apollo project.“The definition and evolution of Flex has been influenced by our incredibly talented developer community from day one,” said David Mendels, senior vice president, Enterprise and Developer Business Unit at Adobe in a press release. “The decision to open source Flex was a completely natural next step. I am incredibly excited to deeply collaborate with the developer community on Flex, and further fuel its momentum and innovation.”With their latest open source release, developers are able to download and contribute to source code for the Flex compiler, components, and application framework. What is not included in the release is Flex Builder and Flex Data Services. Flash itself will also remain closed. Because some companies may not want to use the open source framework, Adobe still offers its commercial licenses with variable terms. I suspect that not many will opt for the paid license route, however. Adobe Systems has set up internal processes to ensure that security and stability remain core elements of Flex, knowing that any security breaches could be disastrous. In the end, what this means that Adobe is further feeding the Apollo ecosystem to support applications and developers in creating and deploying Rich Internet apps that will benefit the end user. They have a $100 million venture arm to support the development of Apollo applications and with the Adobe Media Player. Going open source is a way to galvanize support within the developer community, though it remains to be seen what kind of uptake and flexibility it will actually provide. Adobe is certainly going “all in” with its software. Often times, big corporations will aim to emulate the openness and idealism of the new Internet economy, but fall short in the execution.In terms of a timeline for its release, Adobe projects a pre-released version of their Flex product “Moxie,” posting daily software builds of the Flex SDK for public download and we should expect the full open source Flex to be released during the second half of this year. The source code for the framework itself is already available in the Flex 2.0 SDK.center_img Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#news#web jay fortner 1last_img read more

Read/WriteWeb’s New Comments Feature: SezWho

first_imgTags:#Admin#web Related Posts At the beginning of this week we introduced a new commentsfeature on Read/WriteWeb, called SezWho. Basicallyit introduces comment rating, reputation and filtering to this blog. SezWho was createdby one of our occasional writers, Jitendra Gupta – whose teaminstalled it onto R/WW. You can check out the full list of features in the SezWho FAQ, but in this post I want to summarizehow it improves R/WW’s community.How SezWho works on R/WWA good example of SezWho in action is on our post entitled Is FacebookWorth the Hype?, which was published yesterday and so far has 33 comments. In facthere is comment number 33, by Greg Smith: Underlying TechnologyJitendra told me that the key technology is SezWho’s scoring algorithm, which mimicsthe way reputations are transacted in the real world. Says Jitendra:“We weigh the ratings from highly rated users more highly than ratings from otherusers. We are also planning to support context sensitive reputations, such that a userreputation in one area (e.g. technology) does not automatically translate to a highreputation in another (e.g. politics).”Jitendra said they have over 50K users with profiles currently. They are growingrapidly, via individual sites like Read/WriteWeb – but they are also “doing deals withbig social media hosting companies”. SezWho supports WordPress and MovableType platformsat this point, but they are working on /BB and vBulletin. Plus they will eventuallymake their APIs public.Conclusion – and your feedback requestedI mentioned recently that improving community on Read/WriteWeb is my number 1 priorityfor the site; and SezWho has certainly given our comments some ‘wisdom of the crowds’functionality. Rating, reputations, filters – these are all features we regularly see inthe web products we report on and analyze at R/WW. So SezWho allows us to experiment withthe same technologies in our own community. Plus of course, SezWho is a very ‘read/write’technology – as it highlights the comments of our readers and hopefully encourages morecommunity as a result.There are more things coming on R/WW to enhance the community here, but for now pleasetell us what you think of SezWho. Note that Greg’s SezWho profile can be utilized over other sites too – i.e. hisprofile is not centered around R/WW, but around Greg himself. In other words, it is adistributed system that can be used across multiple sites.The power of SezWho on a blog like ours is that any person can rate any comment. Youdo need to supply an email address, via a pop-up that should only appear once. I actuallyqueried Jitendra about the need for an email address, as I wondered why SezWho doesn’tallow people to anonymously rate comments. Jitendra replied that “anon ratings becomereally easy to game and one commenter can mess up the entire system by repeatedly ratingtheir own comment”. He said that “we are using the email address to identify the users”,but ultimately it also “makes the system more robust and trustworthy, while providingusers incentives to have a good reputation.”So how do you rate comments? At the bottom of each comment, you’ll see this: A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…center_img If you thought the comment contributed something to the post, click ‘yes’ – whichincreases the rating of that comment. This allows other readers to then filterthe comments on a post, to only show the ones rated highly by other readers. This comesin handy when the post itself is quite long and there are a lot of comments – e.g. Josh’sFacebook Hype post that Greg commented on. The filtering is done at the top of all thecomments: 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting richard macmanus You can see above that Greg’s comment currently has a rating of 3.3 (out of 5). Alsoyou can check out Greg’s history of comments on Read/WriteWeb, and the rating each onegot, by hovering your mouse over ‘Profile’:last_img read more

Samsung Reaches Out To Indie VR Filmmakers

first_imgadriana lee Leveraging Big Data that Data Websites Should T… Tags:#3D video#Gear VR#Milk VR#Samsung#virtual reality#VR Why Your Company’s Tech Transformation Starts W… The road to virtual reality just broadened this week: Samsung’s Milk VR service, its virtual reality pipeline for VR videos and games, launched Gear Indie, a new channel for filmmakers to reach Gear VR headset users.The South Korean tech company is passionate about making virtual reality a consumer hit—obviously, with its Oculus-powered facegear leading the way—and it sees polished, immersive VR videos as the way to get there. “Polished” is the key word.Unlike YouTube, which started supporting 360-degree videos viewable in VR headsets earlier this year, the new Gear Indie isn’t a free-for-all. While anyone can upload to Google’s video site, Samsung uses a screening process to evaluate submissions. The company frowns on videos with jarring cut shots, shaky camera work or tracking, or other ill-conceived execution that could potentially discombobulate or even nauseate viewers.See also: Samsung Is Getting Serious About Producing Its Own Virtual-Reality VideosIn other words, budding VR filmmakers can’t just waltz in with any old clips; they must send in their submissions so Samsung’s content programming team can assess them and offer feedback. Once you’re in, however, you have access to Samsung’s audience of Gear VR users, along with a few other benefits.Gearing Up For IndiesThink of Gear Indie as the Sundance Channel or IFC for the virtual-reality set. When I spoke to Samsung’s Matt Apfel at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, he was very clear about one thing: He wanted video experiences that can show off what storytellers can do with virtual reality. At the time, the company had just struck a deal with The Walking Dead’s David Alpert to produce a series for Milk VR. Apfel, vice president of strategy and creative content at Samsung Media Solutions Center America, still wants professional-level quality. But now he’s cracking the door open for the indie filmmaking community. “Generally speaking, our goal with Gear Indie is to cast the widest net possible to source great VR content,” he told me via email. “So, we are encouraging creators at all levels of the ecosystem to participate.” See also: Virtual-Reality Films Could Put The Whole Industry In The SpotlightThe indie channel is releasing more than 10 videos, and the Samsung plans to debut more each week. Within a few months, the tech company will also launch a series of Gear Indie challenges to inspire and reward filmmakers, complete with opportunities to work alongside virtual reality mentors. To get started, Apfel said, filmmakers should register and submit works at the Samsung Milk VR site. When asked what sorts of criteria will be used to approve or deny videos, the company pointed to its online technical and production guidelines. (The site lists content specifications, production guidelines and terms of service.) In addition to technical specifications and viewing experience, the page also includes sections on technique—including shot changes, angles, graphics, effects, audio design and even storytelling recommendations. During Samsung’s first Gear VR announcementWhen it comes to the latter, the segment reads:Storytelling• Fixed cameras are preferred; steady moving cameras at slow pace add variety and detail• If using moving cameras, they should be mounted on cars, trains, motorbikes, etc. that move at a steady pace and are not bumpy• Bumpy motion and sudden movements within the video result in a poor viewing experience• Mounting cameras on boats, bicycles or a person’s head is not advisable• Eventually, clip production should evolve to multidirectional viewing driven by video production• Example: head movements should be directed by events within the clipSamsung also offers some healthy motivation. “Gear Indie is an important initiative for Samsung,” Apfel said, “so we have high hopes that we can quickly ramp up distribution and monetization opportunities.” A Few Other Things To Keep Your Eyes OnOf course, you could follow all of the guidelines and still wonder where you stand. Such is the nature of a subjective medium—quality is in the eye, or eyes (plural), of the beholder. So how do you know if you’re on the right track?Well, unfortunately, Samsung can’t help you along the way, only (in some cases) after the fact. According to Apfel, applicants must finish their videos first. Once they’ve registered for an account online and submit the work, then the team can offer “meaningful feedback” or mentoring. That’s a tough proposition, especially for independent filmmakers. Shooting video—VR video even more so—is not like programming. You can write and rewrite code ad nauseam, but once you film, you can’t go back in time and make subtle changes. You can try, but capturing the same lighting, angles, and other details in a production setting can be quite impossible. (Continuity can even dog big budget studios.) A few other finer points about Gear Indie: Not all filmmakers will qualify for mentoring.Those who do receive feedback should bear budgeting in mind. Because the mentoring works after the fact, they may need to invest in more editing time or even new scenes to address issues.Gear Indie is exclusive to Milk VR, which is itself available only for Gear VR users. But the videos don’t have to be exclusive. You’re free to submit them to Samsung, post them on YouTube, and push them anywhere else. “Most content submitted to Gear Indie does not need to be exclusive to Samsung,” Apfel told ReadWrite. “VR is about building an ecosystem to drive consumer adoption.”Also note that the hardware options, for both viewing and capturing, are growing. New cameras have been emerging at different price points by a variety of tech companies—everyone from Jaunt to Nokia to Google. With the latter’s Jump project, you can even string together GoPros to make your own 360-degree camera. As the tools emerge and advance, so will the need for refined approaches and techniques. VR is a new medium, and the rules are still being written—which makes any sort of guidance rare and invaluable. To its credit, at least Samsung is offering mentoring for rising VR auteurs. This sort of help may become crucial, if their ranks swell the way tech companies hope. That’s the best way to ensure immersive experiences that really grab those eyeballs and don’t let go.  Photos by Adriana Lee for ReadWritecenter_img How AI is Learning to Play with Words Related Posts These Mistakes Can Derail a Legacy Software Con…last_img read more

Hawaii Announces Tax Relief for Flood Victims

first_imgThe Hawaii Department of Taxation (DOT) has announced relief for taxpayers affected by heavy rains and flooding on April 14, 2018, in Kauai county.“2018 Kauai Flood Relief”Qualifying taxpayers must clearly mark “2018 Kauai Flood Relief” on the top center of any applicable return. For income tax purposes, taxpayers may claim all casualty loss deductions allowed under federal law.Insurance Policy ClaimsThe DOT also notes that amounts received under property and casualty insurance policies for damage or loss of inventory used in a trade or business located within an area declared a disaster are exempt from general excise tax.Announcement No. 2018-06, Hawaii Department of Taxation, April 17, 2018, ¶201-051Login to read more tax news on CCH® AnswerConnect or CCH® Intelliconnect®.Not a subscriber? Sign up for a free trial or contact us for a representative.last_img read more

African Forest Elephant Population Plummeting

first_imgThe population of African forest elephants plummeted 62% in the past decade, according to a new study. The figure, which the authors blame on ivory poachers, comes as policymakers discuss ways to curb the ivory market at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) meeting in Thailand. “Hopefully these numbers will help convince decision-makers that there is a problem,” says wildlife biologist Fiona Maisels of the Wildlife Conservation Society and the University of Stirling in the United Kingdom, first author of the new paper. Forest elephants, which often live closer to human populations than the larger savanna elephants, have been particularly hard-hit by ivory poachers. After declines in the elephant population last century, a 1989 international ban on ivory initially led to signs of a resurgence in the animals. Since then, anecdotal evidence and surveys taken in individual parks suggested that heightened demand for ivory in China has once again led an uptick in elephant slaughters. “We knew it was bad, but their habitat is all under forest coverage, so you can’t just go out and do aerial surveys like you can for savanna elephants,” Maisels says. Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*) To get a more complete picture, Maisels and a team of more than 60 researchers from around the world helped coordinate and assemble data from 80 individual surveys taken from 2002 through 2011 in central African locales that are known to be the primary habitats for forest elephants. Some sites were in formally protected areas; others were in spots that conservationists would like to see protected in the future. In each of the locations, which spanned Cameroon, Gabon, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Republic of the Congo, trained biologists surveyed land for elephant dung, an indicator of the elephant population in the area. “This is the first time we’ve managed to do a comparison of all these sites in a very coordinated way,” Maisels says. When the team crunched the numbers, it found that just during the 10-year span covered in the new surveys, the elephant population declined by 62% and the land area inhabited by elephants dropped by 30%. Areas lacking guards, closest to roads, and in countries with high levels of corruption had the most elephant population decline, the researchers reported today in PLOS ONE. “I think these numbers are either very accurate or even a bit conservative,” says biologist Richard Ruggiero, the chief of the Near East, South Asia, and Africa Branch in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Division of International Conservation in Arlington, Virginia, who was not involved in the new work. Because many of the surveys took place in protected areas, he says, they could overestimate elephant populations—elephants often flee into the protected zones to escape nearby poaching. “These surveys are as good as they can be,” Ruggiero adds. “They are certainly very objective and very rigorous.” Estimates on the absolute population of elephants at any given time must be taken with a grain of salt, he says, but overall trends seen over years of sampling the same areas in a standardized way are generally more accurate. The new numbers are not surprising to conservationists who work in the area, both Ruggiero and Maisels say, but are needed to convince others of the problems and provide a starting point to see the effect of future conservation efforts. “When you’re on the ground and you know what to look for, you don’t need a survey to see what’s happening,” Ruggiero says. “But unless you can put a more or less objective metric on it, you’re not going to get this in front of the people who need to see it.” The challenge now, Maisels says, is for those countries represented at the CITES meeting, which lasts until 14 March, to put together new policies to curb the ivory trade. The key, she thinks, will be to stop the trade within China, lowering the demand for ivory and the price. Previous programs aimed at this aspect of the market have been more successful than those specifically aiming to stop the poaching, she says.last_img read more

IDBI Bank strike tomorrow to oppose privatisation plans

first_imgMumbai, Nov 26 (PTI) A section of employees of public sector lender IDBI Bank will strike work tomorrow to oppose the governments plan to privatise the troubled lender on the lines of Axis Bank.The employees are protesting under the banner of United Forum of IDBI Officers and Employees, which is supported by All India Bank Officers Association.”The government, to achieve its disinvestment target of Rs 69,500 crore, is in the process of selling the family silver to private high networth individuals,” a press release issued by the union said.At present, the government owns 76.5 per cent in the infra-lender-turned commercial bank which is grappling with high bad loans and other legacy issues.Earlier, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha had spoken about the governments plan to privatise the lender.”We will consider transforming IDBI Bank in a manner similar to the way Axis Bank was done,” Sinha had told reporters last month. PTI HV BEN NP ABM MKJ SRElast_img read more

Preview: Oklahoma State-TCU

first_imgThe Oklahoma State Cowboys have made it through eight games without losing. Whether this feat is impressive to you is subjective due to the lack of quality opponents the Cowboys have matched up with in those games. The TCU Horned Frogs are also undefeated and represent the best opponent the  Cowboys have played so far.The Horned Frogs have yet to reach the meaty part of their schedule as well, with their only real road test being a victory over Minnesota (although they sweated out wins at Lubbock and Manhattan).  For the most part Gary Patterson’s group has been the more talented team in every game and they’ve taken care of business eight times.The fact that the Cowboys were able to score 70 points against Texas Tech is impressive. However, this is only if you ignore the fact that the defense, which has been the strength of the all season, gave up 56 points.  Regardless, I’m not going to complain too much about a road victory, especially within the Big 12.The Horned Frogs had their own struggles against Tech, needing a crazy touchdown catch from Aaron Green on a tipped pass to win the game 55-52.Glenn Spencer’s unit will be tested again this week going up against an offense that scores 48.9 points per game.TCU’s OffenseTrevone Boykin is one of the elite playmakers in college football right now. Boykin is currently sitting at 5th in the nation with 2,927 passing yards and his 28 touchdowns put him at 4th nationally. Oh yeah, he only has thrown five interceptions on the year as well.When these two teams played last year Boykin threw for 410 yards and hadthree touchdown passes in an easy 42-9 victory over the Daxx Garman-led Cowboys.Boykin is also a threat with his legs, rushing for 524 yards and 6 touchdowns. With Seth Russell of Baylor now out for the year, Boykin is hands down the best quarterback the Cowboys will face all year.OSU defenseDefensive end Jimmy Bean is listed as questionable for the game on Saturday. Whether or not Bean plays will have a huge effect the pass the Cowboys are able to attack Boykin with. I also like the idea of a Emmanuel Ogbah playing pissed off after being left off the Lombardi Award list. No matter what, the Cowboys defense will have to play A+ football against a team that’s scored over 40 points in every conference game. If anything, last week proved that the Cowboys can win a shootout. I honestly didn’t OSU could score enough to win when it allowed 56 points.Key matchupsBoykin isn’t the only elite played TCU has on offense. Wide receiver Josh Doctson’s 1250 yards are the best of any receiver in the country. He also has 14 touchdowns on 71 receptions this year and will be a tough matchup for Kevin Peterson on the outside. In the blowout win last year, Doctson had seven catches for 225 yards and two touchdowns.TCU also has a productive running game with Aaron Green leading the team with 731 yards and 8 TD’s. Green and Boykin are a great read option tandem that will keep the OSU defense from being too aggressive.TCU’s defense has become vulnerable at times. I’m looking at 37 points allowed against SMU, 52 against Tech and 45 in a narrow victory over Kansas State.I believe this is a somewhat even matchup with TCU being a slightly more talented team, but the fact that OSU is at home holds some weight. This game will be decided by big momentum plays, and the amount of pressure on Boykin will dictate those.If Ogbah and Co. are able to chase him around and force him to throw off his back foot, turnovers will happen. However, if Boykin has time and is able to get comfortable in the pocket then TCU’s offense could be too much.OSU offenseMason Rudolph needs to show more consistency in this game. I only want to see J.W. Walsh inside the five-yard line to score touchdown. Hopefully Rudolph can get the offense moving to the point where he can take about 95 percent of the offensive snaps.Any hope of Chris Carson and Rennie Childs developing in to high-powered running backs may be gone, but Raymond Taylor has shown legitimate potential. Taylor gashed Tech’s defense with two touchdowns, including an impressive 28-yarder. If Taylor were to get a majority of the carries on Saturday you won’t hear me complaining.Prediction timeThe Cowboys cannot afford to go down early against the Horned Frogs like they did against Tech. Even though this is a 2:30 start, BPS should be packed and the fans should be rowdy. If the Cowboys can use the crowd to their advantage I really like their chances. It will take a near-perfect game for OSU to win and think this team is ready to take this next step.Prediction: OSU 41, TCU 37If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more