Tag: 上海龙凤419


Dembeles agent denies any indiscipline at Barcelona


first_imgWith all the negative press that Ousmane Dembele has been getting these past few days in Barcelona, his agent had to come out and defend him.The situation with French winger Ousmane Dembele in Barcelona has reached an important boiling point, there have been several reports of his complete indifference towards his club’s main cause and it has been proven through his late showings to games and training sessions.Just this Monday, the player got a whole new dig from his France manager and confirmed that Dembele does arrive late regularly but he always has an excuse to justify his actions.This really seems to be getting out of control for the player, who hadn’t gotten any type of defense from anybody in the most recent hours until his agent came out to defend him during an interview for RMC Sports.Moussa Sissoko, the former player who turned agent and now manages the careers of several players from his country, was asked about the situation with Dembele this Monday and his response hinted at a possible health-related problem that the player has been going through lately.The main reaction from Sissoko was to confirm that everything that’s being said about Ousmane is fake news, and he even went further.🔉Moussa Sissoko(Dembele’s agent): The criticism of Ousmane Dembele is overblown””All these criticisms make me laugh. “It had already begun with a so-called delay at the meeting before the Champions League match against Inter. pic.twitter.com/ALITdj3wbL— Blaugrana Nation (@Blaugranarealm) November 12, 2018The young star’s agent said that he has been in direct contact with several members of the club to assess the situation with his player, he revealed that the people at the club are very happy with him and there is no truth to everything that’s being said about the kid.“Ousmane is still working hard in a great club, the manager appreciates him, just like Deschamps does in the French National Team,” said Sissoko during the interview.“I also know that Abidal is very happy with everything he’s doing, he knows that he is training very well.”“All the criticism he is getting has a reason, we all know that he needs to improve on several things, but that is completely normal at his age.”“There is a lot of people who are on his toes, there was a rumor about him coming in late before a match, but the manager already clarified this situation. Now, he is suffering from gastroenteritis.”David Villa, FC BarcelonaTop 10 players who played for both Barcelona and Valencia Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Time to talk about the best players who represented both Barcelona and Valencia, prior to their La Liga encounter at Camp Nou this evening.“Although it’s true that he called the club late for that, he did it because he was very sick. The lad is only 20 years old and he plays for Barcelona, which is one of the biggest clubs in the world. Dembele had a great start of the season.”“People want to create controversy where there is none, but Dembele has the capacity to navigate through anything,” he added.🎙 [RMCSport] | Sissoko (Dembélés agent): “Barcelona is very happy with Ousmane, Valverde appreciates him and Abidal is also happy of how Dembélé is performing and training.” pic.twitter.com/TPujrlo7Bu— BarcaTimes (@BarcaTimes) November 12, 2018As of right now, Ousmane Dembele is part of the France squad for the last international break of 2018 where Les Bleus will play against The Netherlands and Uruguay.Dembele is considered an essential part of the squad that manager Didier Deschamps took to the World Cup final last summer, the Barcelona player wasn’t a prominent part of that squad and his intention is to change the manager’s mind in order to claim his position alongside other great players such as Antoine Griezmann or Kylian Mbappé.There is a massive contrast between the type of indiscipline that the PSG winger is showing, to the one that Dembele has been accused of lately.Having an important level of activity for France during the next couple of weeks, should be a good enough motivation for him to return to Barcelona with the objective of winning back the trust of all his teammates and the manager.The most worrisome part of all this, is that Dembele wasn’t cheap and losing a talent like him would be one of the Catalan club’s biggest mistakes.After all, we are talking about the most expensive player that has ever arrived in Barcelona.Rassemblés à Clairefontaine depuis ce midi, les Bleus ont effectué une séance légère en début de soirée. pic.twitter.com/WI8vWZV6Kr— Equipe de France ⭐⭐ (@equipedefrance) November 12, 2018What do you think Ousmane Dembele should do in order to gain back the trust from his club and country? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.last_img read more


Klopp on the evolution of Worldclass Salah


first_imgJürgen Klopp believes Mohamed Salah’s game has improved tremendously as he’s adapted to playing in a slightly different position for Liverpool this season.Salah has notched in 14 goals this season and remains the club’s top scorer with the latest coming against Wolves.The Egyptian forward played as a lone striker at Molineux where he scored and assisted Virgil van Dijk’s second-half goal.“It’s good,” Klopp told reporters at Melwood on Monday morning, when asked about the Egyptian’s development. “He had to adapt a bit to the slightly different positions; it’s not that much different, but it is different from time to time.divock origi, liverpoolReport: Origi cause Klopp injury concerns George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Divock Origi injury in today’s game against Newcastle is a cause for concern for Jurgen Klopp.Perhaps with one eye on Tuesday’s trip to Italy…“We need him as a link-up player as well and that’s a very important part of our game, but he is still with the desire and with his speed. His speed in the first few yards is just impressive. He is a very important part of our finishing situation in general, how we prepare them, how we come into the situations.“Of course, he is young enough to involve a lot more things in his style of play. It is not just speed, it is not just finishing, it is between the lines, there are a lot of things, there is keeping the ball, but you need your body for that. That was the only problem Mo had a little bit at the beginning of the season, a part of his body was not perfect.“If you work in an office and your shoulder is not 100 percent, if it is not your writing hand then it should be OK, but if you are a professional football player in this moment it just keeps 10 or 15 percent away.“He is a world-class player, but we all knew we had to wait for the moment when everything is fine – that is already a few weeks ago and so it’s all good.”last_img read more


When Should You Call 911 About A Bear Sighting


first_imgJeff Selinger, Kenai Peninsula Area Biologist:  “Bears are out moving around so you know pick up the garbage and the trash around the houses and minimize the potential of having a negative encounter with bears by being aware when you’re out in the woods.” Police say if people see a brown bear in town, they still should call 911 since that is more rare. Police say most bear sightings don’t need to be called in to 911. But police do want to hear about bears that are aggressive, sick, injured, orphaned or rummaging through trash. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The Alaska Department Game and Fish wants to warn the public that bears are on the move and to be “Bear Aware”. However, Police are urging people to stop calling emergency lines to report non-emergency bear sightings. Selinger: “The Bears are going to be looking for fish as well, keep your property picked up and minimize attractants that might bring bears into a neighborhood. Keep your eyes up when you’re out there recreating.”last_img read more


Theres now an app in case you want to um analyze your


first_img Now playing: Watch this: 0 1:59 You decide: Is the app cheesy? Or a gas? (Excuse us.) Baskoro Lanjar Prasetyo/Getty Images They say there’s an app for everything. Now there really is. A new app has now been released called Fartr, and it’s exactly what you’re thinking. The program lets you record, analyze and share your farts. Fartr cuts through the old taboos and calls itself the “official app of the body positive movement.”All you need to do is hold anywhere on the screen and, well, pass gas (preferably away from your loved ones or strangers) to make a recording. Fartr interprets the audio with a special algorithm and analyzes your flatulence based on volume, length, pitch and rhythm. The app will also provide a unique description of the “sound.” Fartr might describe it like a tuba, a flute or “two farts holding hands,” according to the app’s description. The fun doesn’t stop there. Next, you’ll get your Fartr score, which can be shared by way of text, email or social media if you’re particularly proud or competitive. Post a comment Share your voicecenter_img Tags “At Fartr, we believe flatulence can be beautiful and unique, and we have built an app to capture that,” the company said in a release on Thursday.It’s $2 to take part in this potty humor, but a percentage of the proceeds are donated to causes that support Crohn’s and Colitis research, the release said. Fartr is available on Android and iOS.  Get started with animoji on iPhone X Mobile Applicationslast_img read more


BNP to protest Milons death in custody


first_imgBNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi. Prothom Alo File PhotoBNP leaders and activists will hold demonstrations carrying black badges across the country on Sunday to protest against custodial death of a leader of the party’s student wing, reports UNB.Dhaka’s Tejgaon thana Chhatra Dal leader Zakir Hossain Milon allegedly died in torture during the police remand last week.The party will also arrange doa mahfil in mosques across the country after Juma prayers on Friday seeking salvation of the departed souls of those who were subjected to ‘government’s planned’ killings, including Milon.BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi announced the programme at a press conference at its Nayapaltan central office on Thursday.Their party’s all district and city units will stage demonstrations holding black badges on Sunday, he said.In the capital, the BNP leader said their all the thana units will also hold the similar programme on the day.Plainclothes police arrested Milon, also the acting president of Tejgaon thana unit of JCD, front in front of the Jatiya Press Club after a human chain programme of the party on 6 March.He was taken on a three-day remand on 8 March and sent to jail on Sunday.Milon was taken to Dhaka Medical College Hospital on Monday morning where doctors declared him dead. BNP alleged that he died due to ‘brutal torture on him during the remand.”Rizvi alleged that their party’s Narayanganj unit general secretary Mamun Mahmud has been tortured taking him on remand repeatedly in ‘false” cases.He said Mamun has got seriously ill due to immense torture on him. “I, on behalf of BNP, demand the law enforcers immediately stop repression on him.”Rizvi criticised Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader for his comment that the BNP has become dejected and desperate as people did not respond to its movement, saying it his delirium. “Even, Awami League’s friend HM Ershad said two days back that Awami League’s popularity has gone down to zero level.”He also alleged that Quader is making provocation to create anarchy in the country in a planned way.last_img read more


PostMugabe presidential race in Zimbabwe on July 30


first_imgA Zimbabwe Electoral Commissioon (ZEC) official files through the voters roll at an inspection centre in Harare, ahead of Zimbabwe election. Photo: AFPZimbabwe announced on Wednesday it would choose a new president and parliament on 30 July, in the country’s first electoral test since the removal of its autocratic former leader Robert Mugabe.His successor, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, unveiled the date in the official Zimbabwe Government Gazette.”Monday, the 30th day of July, 2018 (is) the day of the election to the office of President, the election of members of the National Assembly and election of councillors,” Mnangagwa said in a proclamation.Once a right-hand man to the 94-year-old Mugabe, Mnangagwa dramatically succeeded the veteran leader in November after nearly four-decades in charge when troops swarmed the streets and briefly seized key sites.Mnangagwa, 75, will square off against the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party, now led by 40-year-old Nelson Chamisa following the death of Morgan Tsvangirai in February.If no candidate receives a simple majority in the first round of the presidential election, a run-off will be held on 8 September.Elections under Mugabe were marred by corruption, intimidation and violence, but Mnangagwa has vowed to hold a free and fair vote.The election will be the first to be monitored by Western observers in many years.On Monday Harare and the European Union announced that observers from the bloc would monitor polls in the southern African country for the first time in 16 years.- Western observers -The head of the last EU observer mission, Pierre Schori, was thrown out of Zimbabwe in 2002 on the eve of presidential elections that were condemned as flawed.Following the high-profile spat, Zimbabwe barred the EU and other Western observers from sending further missions to monitor polls in the country as Mugabe grew more and more defiant of foreign criticism up until his downfall.And in a further sign of Zimbabwe’s growing efforts to mend fences with former foes following Mugabe’s resignation, the country has applied to re-join the Commonwealth, the bloc of former British colonies said Monday.Harare’s membership was suspended in 2003 over the violent and graft-ridden elections the previous year.Zimbabwe left the Commonwealth at the height of violent land seizures, when white farmers were evicted in favour of landless black people — a policy that wrecked agriculture and triggered economic collapse.Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland confirmed that the organisation would also send observers to the elections.Mugabe sent shockwaves through the ruling ZANU-PF, the party he dominated for decades, when he recently posed with a retired general who will take on the government in this year’s election.Despite a slew of reformist pledges and announcements it is unclear whether Mnangagwa, who was a vital cog in the ZANU-PF party and helped Mugabe to hold onto power for 37 years, has won the support of ordinary Zimbabweans.last_img read more


Indias 10 Laptop to be revealed Feb 3 Updated


first_img(PhysOrg.com) — On February 3, the Indian government will display a prototype of the Rs 500, a $10 laptop that will hopefully give more young people the opportunity to learn and help increase the country’s school enrollment. UPDATE (February 4, 2009):On Tuesday, February 3, India’s national Mission on Education Program clarified that the $10 laptop is actually not a laptop, but a storage device. The storage device contains megabytes of data that can be accessed by a user by connecting the device to a laptop. The 5-inch by 10-inch Rs 500 storage device is now priced at $30. Joint Secretary N. K. Sinha, who made the announcement, did not explain why the device was being called a laptop when it was not. via: Times of IndiaThe $10 laptop project is the product of a collaboration among institutions including the Vellore Institute of Technology, the Indian Institute of Science, and IIT-Madras. The project began about three years ago in response to the proposed $100 laptop (the “One Laptop Per Child” project), an idea from MIT’s Nicholas Negroponte, which was going to cost $200. Currently, the $10 laptop is projected to cost $20, but India’s secretary of higher education R. P. Agarwal hopes that price will come down with mass production.The $10 laptop will be equipped with 2 GB of memory, WiFi, fixed Ethernet, expandable memory, and consume just 2 watts of power. The unveiling of the laptop will occur at the government’s launch of the National Mission on Education through Information and Technology, held next Tuesday in Tirupati. The Indian government is working with publishers to provide e-content on educational subjects which will be available free of cost. The government is also considering a plan to subsidize internet connections for schools.Currently, the government is consulting with different production agencies, and hopes to make the computers commercially available in the next six months.via: Engadget© 2009 PhysOrg.com Explore further High-speed network for first responders raises concernscenter_img Citation: India’s $10 Laptop to be revealed Feb. 3 (Updated) (2009, January 30) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-01-india-laptop-revealed-feb.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more


Whats new in Google Cloud Functions serverless platform


first_imgGoogle Cloud Next conference in San Francisco in July 2018 saw some exciting new developments in the field of serverless technology. The company is giving development teams the ability to build apps without worrying about managing servers with their new serverless technology. Bringing the best of both worlds: Serverless and containers, Google announced that Cloud Functions is now generally available and ready for production use. Here is a list of the all-new features that developers can watch out for- #1 Write Cloud Functions using  Node 8, Python 3.7 With support for async/await and a new function signature, you can now write Cloud Functions using Node 8. Dealing with multiple asynchronous operations is now easier thanks to Cloud Functions that provide data and context. You can use the await keyword to await the results of asynchronous operations. Python 3.7 can also be used to write Cloud Functions.  Similar to Node, you get data and context for background functions, and request for HTTP. Python HTTP functions are based on the popular Flask microframework. Flask allows you to get set up really fast. The requests are based on flask.Request and the responses just need to be compatible with flask.make_response. As with Node, you get data (dict) with Python background functions and context (google.cloud.functions.Context). To signal completion, you just need to return from your function or raise an exception and Stackdriver error handling will kick in. And, similarly to Node (package.json), Cloud Functions will automatically do the installation of all of your Python dependencies (requirements.txt) and build in the cloud. You can have a look at the code differences between Node 6 and Node 8 behavior and at a Flask request on the Google Cloud website. #2 Cloud Functions is now out  for Firebase Cloud Functions for Firebase is also generally available. It has full support for Node 8, including ECMAScript 2017 and async/await. The additional granular controls include support  for runtime configuration options, including region, memory, and timeout. Thus allowing you to refine the behavior of your applications. You can find more details from the Firebase documentation. Flexibility for the application stack now stands improved. Firebase events (Analytics, Firestore, Realtime Database, Authentication) are directly available in the Cloud Functions Console on GCP. You can now trigger your functions in response to the Firebase events directly from your GCP project. #3 Run headless Chrome by accessing system libraries Google Cloud functions have also broadened the scope of libraries available by rebasing the underlying Cloud Functions operating system onto Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. Access to system libraries such as ffmpeg and libcairo2 is now available- in addition to imagemagick- as well as everything required to run headless Chrome. For example, you can now process videos and take web page screenshots in Chrome from within Cloud Functions. #4 Set environment variables You can now pass configuration to your functions by specifying key-value pairs that are bound to a function. The catch being, these pairs don’t have to exist in your source code. Environment variables are set at the deploy time using the –set-env-vars argument. These are then injected into the environment during execution time. You can find more details on the Google cloud webpage. #5 Cloud SQL direct connect Now connect Cloud Functions to Cloud SQL instances through a fully managed secure direct connection.  Explore more from the official documentation. What to expect next in Google Cloud Functions? Apart from these, Google also promises a range of features to be released in the future. These include: 1. Scaling controls This will be used to limit the number of instances on a per-function basis thus limiting traffic. Sudden traffic surge scenarios will , therefore,come under control when Cloud Functions rapidly scales up and overloads a database or general prioritization based on the importance of various parts of your system. 2. Serverless scheduling You’ll be able to schedule Cloud Functions down to one-minute intervals invoked via HTTP(S) or Pub/Sub. This allows you to execute Cloud Functions on a repeating schedule. Tasks like daily report generation or regularly processing dead letter queues will now pick up speed! 3. Compute Engine VM Access Now connect to Compute Engine VMs running on a private network using –connected-vpc option. This provides a direct connection to compute resources on an internal IP address range. 4. IAM Security Control The new Cloud Functions Invoker IAM role allows you to add IAM security to this URL. You can control who can invoke the function using the same security controls as used in Cloud Platform 5. Serverless containers With serverless containers, Google provides the same infrastructure that powers Cloud Functions. Users will now be able to simply provide a Docker image as input. This will allow them to deploy arbitrary runtimes and arbitrary system libraries on arbitrary Linux distributions This will be done while still retaining the same serverless characteristics as Cloud Functions. You can find detailed information about the updated services on Google Cloud’s Official page. Read Next Google Cloud Next: Fei-Fei Li reveals new AI tools for developers Google Cloud Launches Blockchain Toolkit to help developers build apps easily Zeit releases Serverless Docker in betalast_img read more


New programming video courses for March 2019


first_imgIt’s not always easy to know what to learn next if you’re a programmer. Industry shifts can be subtle but they can sometimes be dramatic, making it incredibly important to stay on top of what’s happening both in your field and beyond. No one person can make that decision for you. All the thought leadership and mentorship in the world isn’t going to be able to tell you what’s right for you when it comes to your career. But this list of videos, released last month, might give you a helping hand as to where to go next when it comes to your learning… New data science and artificial intelligence video courses for March Apache Spark is carving out a big presence as the go-to software for big data. Two videos from February focus on Spark – Distributed Deep Learning with Apache Spark and Apache Spark in 7 Days. If you’re new to Spark and want a crash course on the tool, then clearly, our video aims to get you up and running quickly. However, Distributed Deep Learning with Apache Spark offers a deeper exploration that shows you how to develop end to end deep learning pipelines that can leverage the full potential of cutting edge deep learning techniques. While we’re on the subject of machine learning, other choice video courses for March include TensorFlow 2.0 New Features (we’ve been eagerly awaiting it and it finally looks like we can see what it will be like), Hands On Machine Learning with JavaScript (yes, you can now do machine learning in the browser), and a handful of interesting videos on artificial intelligence and finance: AI for Finance Machine Learning for Algorithmic Trading Bots with Python Hands on Python for Finance Elsewhere, a number of data visualization video courses prove that communicating and presenting data remains an urgent challenge for those in the data space. Tableau remains one of the definitive tools – you can learn the latest version with Tableau 2019.1 for Data Scientists and Data Visualization Recipes with Python and Matplotlib 3. New app and web development video courses for March 2019 There are a wealth of video courses for web and app developers to choose from this month. True, Hands-on Machine Learning for JavaScript is well worth a look, but moving past the machine learning hype, there are a number of video courses that take a practical look at popular tools and new approaches to app and web development. Angular’s death has been greatly exaggerated – it remains a pillar of the JavaScript world. While the project’s versioning has arguably been lacking some clarity, if you want to get up to speed with where the framework is today, try Angular 7: A Practical Guide. It’s a video that does exactly what it says on the proverbial tin – it shows off Angular 7 and demonstrates how to start using it in web projects. We’ve also been seeing some uptake of Angular by ASP.NET developers, as it offers a nice complement to the Microsoft framework on the front end side. Our latest video on the combination, Hands-on Web Development with ASP.NET Core and Angular, is another practical look at an effective and increasingly popular approach to full-stack development. Other picks for March include Building Mobile Apps with Ionic 4, a video that brings you right up to date with the recent update that launched in January (interestingly, the project is now backed by web components, not Angular), and a couple of Redux videos – Mastering Redux and Redux Recipes. Redux is still relatively new. Essentially, it’s a JavaScript library that helps you manage application state – because it can be used with a range of different frameworks and libraries, including both Angular and React, it’s likely to go from strength to strength in 2019. Infrastructure, admin and security video courses for March 2019 Node.js is becoming an important library for infrastructure and DevOps engineers. As we move to a cloud native world, it’s a great tool for developing lightweight and modular services. That’s why we’re picking Learn Serverless App Development with Node.js and Azure Functions as one of our top videos for this month. Azure has been growing at a rapid rate over the last 12 months, and while it’s still some way behind AWS, Microsoft’s focus on developer experience is making Azure an increasingly popular platform with developers. For Node developers, this video is a great place to begin – it’s also useful for anyone who simply wants to find out what serverless development actually feels like. Read next: Serverless computing wars: AWS Lambda vs. Azure Functions A partner to this, for anyone beginning Node, is the new Node.js Design Patterns video. In particular, if Node.js is an important tool in your architecture, following design patterns is a robust method of ensuring reliability and resilience. Elsewhere, we have Modern DevOps in Practice, cutting through the consultancy-speak to give you useful and applicable guidance on how to use DevOps thinking in your workflows and processes, and DevOps with Azure, another video that again demonstrates just how impressive Azure is. For those not Azure-inclined, there’s AWS Certified Developer Associate – A Practical Guide, a video that takes you through everything you need to know to pass the AWS Developer Associate exam. There’s also a completely cloud-agnostic video course in the form of Creating a Continuous Deployment Pipeline for Cloud Platforms that’s essential for infrastructure and operations engineers getting to grips with cloud native development. Learn a new programming language with these new video courses for March Finally, there are a number of new video courses that can help you get to grips with a new programming language. So, perfect if you’ve been putting off your new year’s resolution to learn a new language… Java 11 in 7 Days is a new video that brings you bang up to date with everything in the latest version of Java, while Hands-on Functional Programming with Java will help you rethink and reevaluate the way you use Java. Together, the two videos are a great way for Java developers to kick start their learning and update their skill set.last_img read more


Rep Canfield invites residents to March indistrict office hours


first_img11Mar Rep. Canfield invites residents to March in-district office hours Rep. Ned Canfield invites residents of the 84th House District to attend his in-district office hours on Friday, March 25 at the Caro Area District Library, 840 W. Frank St. in Caro from 1:30-2:30 p.m.No appointment is necessary. Residents unable to attend office hours are encouraged to contact Rep. Canfield by phone at 517-373-0476, or by email at EdwardCanfield@house.mi.gov.### Categories: Canfield News,Newslast_img


Modern Times Group has acquired the exclusive dist


first_imgModern Times Group has acquired the exclusive distribution rights to the National Hockey League (NHL) in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland from Medge Consulting.The rights include exclusive live coverage on free-to-air TV, pay TV and the internet until the end of the 2015-16 season. Swedish viewers will be able to watch live NHL games on ice hockey pay TV channel Viasat Hockey and premium pay TV channel Viasat Sport, with selected games also shown on free TV channel TV10.Norwegian viewers will also be able to watch live games on Viasat Hockey as well as on premium channel Viasat Sport HD, with selected games shown on Viasat 4.
In Denmark, viewers will be able to watch live matches on pay TV channel TV 2 Sport, which MTG operates together with TV 2 Denmark. Finnish viewers will be able to watch games on Viasat Hockey and the Nelonen Pro sports channels.All of the games will also be available over the internet on MTG’s Viaplay online TV platform in each country.Hans-Holger Albrecht, president and CEO of MTG, said: “The NHL is the most watched ice hockey league in the world and attracts large TV audiences in the Nordic region, as well as stadium audiences when the games are played here. This reflects both the popularity of the sport and the fact that a number of Nordic ice hockey stars play in the League. This is a key sports right for us and this is the first time that we have secured the rights exclusively on a multi-platform and multi-country basis.”last_img read more


Multiscreen TV is the future for Croatian cable op


first_imgMultiscreen TV is the future for Croatian cable operator B.net, especially following its merger with telco Vipnet, according to Adrian Jezina, board member of Vipnet and CEO of B.net. Customers are looking for platform-agnostic services, and content is the key to diversification and raising ARPU in a competitive market, he says.last_img


Discovery has named AMC Networks executive Paul Re


first_imgDiscovery has named AMC Networks executive Paul Rehrig as general manager of Eurosport Digital, the sports broadcaster’s direct-to-consumer business unit.Paul RehrigRehrig served for nearly eight years as EVP of digital and business development at AMC Networks, where he was responsible for growing revenue from the group’s global digital partnerships and building the company’s direct-to-consumer subscription businesses.During his time at AMC Networks, he built the company’s direct-to-consumer team and followed up by launching and running two subscription-video-on-demand businesses: Sundance Now and Shudder.In his new role at Discovery, he will oversee the development of Eurosport’s digital direct-to-consumer products, including the Eurosport App, Eurosport Player and Eurosport.com.Rehrig will report to Peter Faricy, Discovery’s CEO, global direct-to-consumer, and will be based in London where he will work closely with Andrew Georgiou, who joins Discovery later this year as president, Eurosport and global sports rights and sports marketing solutions, as well as the Eurosport and Discovery EMEA leadership teams.“We are thrilled to welcome such a distinguished leader with a proven record of launching and running successful direct-to-consumer businesses and products globally. Paul is the perfect fit to lead our outstanding Eurosport Digital team as we focus on building products that sports fans love. As we look to the exciting opportunities ahead, Paul will ensure Eurosport delivers the immersive multi-screen products and experiences that are essential for powering people’s passions and engaging targeted global communities around sport,” said Faricy.“I have been hugely impressed by how Eurosport has become a digital pioneer and leader in sports under Discovery’s leadership. Serving sports fans with programming and content across Europe is a significant responsibility and I’m thrilled to lead such a world-class team. There is a massive opportunity to enhance and expand Eurosport’s digital product experiences and innovate in myriad ways that more deeply engage fans and build audiences and subscribers across the region,” said RehrigRehrig’s appointment comes as Eurosport gears up for coverage of next year’s Olympic Games in Tokyo across Europe, as well as other premium live sport throughout the year.last_img read more


Are we done the downside…and who will be the short


first_imgAre we done the downside…and who will be the short sellers on the next rally? The gold price did precisely nothing during Far East trading on their Friday…and through the first hour of trading in London.  But at 9:00 a.m. GMT, gold got hit for a bit over fifteen bucks in just under and hour.  That was it’s low price tick of the day.  It recovered a bit going into the 8:20 a.m. Comex open…and then began to rally sharply from there. Of course that wasn’t allowed to stand…and fifteen minutes after it began, a not-for-profit seller put an end to it…and by around 11:40 a.m. Eastern time, the gold price was back where it started at the beginning of the trading day in New York.  From there it chopped very slowly higher for the remainder of the day. Gold closed at $1,576.80 spot…down ‘only’ $2.70 on the day.  Gross volume was way up there once again at 214,000 contracts.  Gold volume all week was very high…averaging 215,000 contracts a day, so Friday’s volume was actually a hair below ‘average’. The dollar index opened at 81.95 on Friday morning in the Far East…and drifted a bit lower from there…hitting its nadir [81.79] at 8:30 a.m. in London trading.  From there it rallied to its high of the day…82.47…sometime between 10 and 11 a.m. in New York…and then slid a bit into the close, finishing the day at 82.27…up 33 basis points from Thursday. Once again, trying to make the dollar index price action fit the precious metal price action on a daily basis would be, for the most part, an exercise in futility…as it has been for most of the last three weeks.  Yes, the dollar index is up about 300 basis points in the last month, but its price action was only a fig leaf behind which JPMorgan et al did the dirty…as the correlation between them and gold and silver, has been iffy at best on a daily basis. The gold stocks started in positive territory, but once the gold price began to sell off, the stocks followed quickly…and hit their lows at gold’s low…around 11:40 a.m. Eastern time.  After that, they didn’t do much…and the HUI finished down another 0.70%. (Click on image to enlarge) Here are three cute photos sent by various readers over the last few weeks or so…and I try to insert a few when I have the space…or the time, which I do in my Saturday column. Sponsor Advertisement (Click on image to enlarge) Here’s the longer term Silver Sentiment Index…and it gives you the big picture view. It was a very similar story in silver, at least up until 9:00 a.m. in London.  Then, like gold, JPMorgan et al began the engineered price decline in silver as well.  The silver price hit an interim low just before 10:00 a.m. GMT…and then hit its real low of the day, which appeared to come at, or right after the London p.m. silver fix. Once that low tick [a bit below the $27.90 spot mark] was painted, the silver price blasted off to the upside…and went parabolic at the Comex open in New York.  Then, once again like gold, a non-profit-maximizing seller made an appearance about fifteen minutes after Comex trading began…and for the rest of the day, the silver price pattern was identical to the gold price pattern. Silver closed at $28.58 spot…up 7 cents on the day.  Net volume was very heavy…around 59,000 contracts. The list of stocks I watch over at the Toronto Globe and Mail was not available for viewing yesterday, as they were having some ‘technical issues’ on their website.  But Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down another 1.32% despite the fact that silver managed to close in positive territory.center_img With some ruthless editing, I’ve cut the number of stories down to what I feel is a manageable amount. The beauty of the second amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it away. – Author unknown Today’s pop classic needs no introduction…and neither does the group that sings it.  They are as American as apple pie…and this is one of their biggest hits.  You’ll know it instantly.  The link is here. Today’s classical ‘blast from the past’ is the overture to Mozart’s opera “The Magic Flute” K620.  This recording is from 2006 with the Weiner Philharmoniker.  Riccardo Muti conducts…and the link is here. Yesterday we saw a new low price tick in silver, but not a new low for gold.  I was surprised after the aggressive sell-off in early London trading, that there was no follow-through to the downside in either metal in New York.  Quite the contrary, there were rallies in both starting in London, well before the Comex open…and whether it was short covering is up for debate, as the preliminary open interest numbers for Friday seem to indicate otherwise.  But, as I mentioned in the COT discussion further up, we may or may not find out in next Friday’s COT report…depending on this coming Monday and Tuesday’s price action. Here are the 3-year charts for both gold and silver… (Click on image to enlarge) The CME’s Daily Delivery Report for ‘Day 3’ of the March delivery month showed that 13 gold and 298 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Tuesday. The two big short/issuers in silver were Canada’s Bank of Nova Scotia…and ABN Amro, with 136 and 123 contracts respectively.  The biggest long/stopper was JPMorgan Chase with 197 contracts…followed by Jefferies and Credit Suisse, with 57 and 39 contracts respectively.  Yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is worth a quick look…and the link is here. It was the same old, same old in GLD and SLV yesterday.  GLD declined by 19,354 troy ounces…and SLV added another 386,668 troy ounces. While on the subject of SLV….Joshua Gibbons, the “Guru of the SLV Bar List” updated his website with the internal goings-on in SLV for the week that was.  The activity is posted on his about.ag/SLV/ website…and the link to that is here. The U.S. Mint had a tiny sales report for the first day of March, as they sold 4,000 ounces of gold eagles…and that was all. Over at the Comex-approved depositories on Thursday, they reported receiving 600,129 troy ounces of silver…and shipped a tiny 5,022 ounces of the stuff out the door.  The link to that activity is here. The Commitment of Traders Report, as of the close of Comex trading on Tuesday, was a bit of surprise in some ways.  There was short covering going on by the commercials in both gold and silver, but it also appeared that Ted Butler’s raptors…the smaller traders outside of the Big 8…sold long positions and took some profits on that big price spike that occurred in both metals on Tuesday. In silver, the Commercial net short position declined by a very healthy 35.4 million ounces…and the net short position is now down to 154.4 million ounces. The Big 4 are short 227.1 million ounces of silver…and the ‘5 through 8’ largest traders are short an additional 52.4 million ounces.  Because we were so busy at the store yesterday, I had no chance to talk to Ted Butler, so I don’t know how much JPMorgan’s short position improved by, but I’m sure it was by a decent amount. As far as concentration goes, once all the market-neutral spread traders are subtracted, the real open interest in silver falls from 145,625 contracts all the way down to 101,155 contracts…about a third.  Based on these net open interest numbers, the Big 4 are short 44.9% of the entire futures market in silver…and the ‘5 through 8’ traders add another 10.4 percentage points…so the Big 8 in total are short 55.3% of the silver market. In gold, the Commercial net short position actually increased by 554,000 ounces…and now sits at 13.76 million ounces.  Most of this increase can be accounted for by the fact that the raptors sold a big whack of long positions for a profit on Tuesday’s rally and, mechanically, this has the effect of increasing the Commercial net short position. The Big 4 in gold are short 8.89 million ounces of gold…and the ‘5 through 8’ traders are short an additional 5.34 million ounces.  In total, the Big 8 are short 14.23 million ounces of gold. Once the market-neutral spread trades are subtracted from the total open interest, the Big 4 are short 24.6% of the entire Comex futures market in gold…and the ‘5 through 8’ traders add another 14.8 percent points to that total.  The Big 8 are short 39.4% of the Comex futures market in gold. Without a doubt there has been considerable improvement in all these numbers since the Tuesday cut-off, as he price has declined every day since, but depending on what kind of price action we see on Monday and Tuesday of next week, they may or may not show up in next Friday’s COT Report.  That’s why I was really unhappy to see that big price spike this past Tuesday, as it threw this week’s COT numbers totally out of whack.  Without that one day of data, yesterday’s COT report would have been much more bullish in both metals.  You can’t always get what you want. Here’s Nick Laird’s most excellent “Days to Cover Short Positions” chart that includes the data from yesterday’s COT Report. (Click on image to enlarge) I guess we shouldn’t be too surprised that JPMorgan et al went after silver so aggressively, as that metal really is their problem child, especially for Morgan.  As I’ve mentioned before, it’s still my opinion that JPM, the Bank of Nova Scotia…and HSBC USA are the three big material silver shorts.  It’s my opinion that between them they are short about 40% of the entire Comex silver market…with JPMorgan holding the largest portion by far. And it’s also my opinion that precious metal prices won’t be going materially higher from here unless these three entities either stand aside, cover…or declare force majeure. Unfortunately, the answers to the two $64,000 questions still remain…are we done the downside…and who will be the short sellers on the next rally?  The answer to these questions will determine where we go from here price wise…and how fast we get there.  Nothing else matters. I’m done for the day…and the week. See you on Tuesday. (Click on image to enlarge) (Click on image to enlarge) And here’s the chart from the week before, so you can compare the changes in all four precious metals from one week to the next…and some of them are pretty big. Aben Resources (TSX.V: ABN) is a Canadian gold and silver exploration company with a focus on developing properties in the Yukon and Northwest Territories. The Company owns a 100% interest in the 18,314 acre Justin Gold Project located in SE Yukon. A 2,020 metre diamond drill program was carried out in 2011 to test never before drilled zones. Aben made a significant new greenfields gold discovery when it intercepted 60m of 1.19 g/t Au in hole JN11009 at the POW Zone. Additionally, a new high grade silver-copper zone was discovered at the Kangas Zone with hole JN11003 returning 1.07m of 7320 g/t Ag (234 oz/ton) and 3.52% Cu. Aben carried out an aggressive exploration and drill program in 2012 to follow up on the initial discoveries. The first drill hole in 2012, JN12011, returned 46.4m of 1.49 g/t Au and extended the gold mineralization at the discovery zone 85 metres laterally. The Company has four other prospective Yukon and NWT projects in its portfolio along with a seasoned management and geological team. Aben’s chairman, Ron Netolitzky, is credited with exploration success on numerous properties including three Western Canadian gold and silver projects which became producing mines. Please visit our website to learn more about the company and request information.last_img read more


My back hurts when I sit downIts been going on f


first_imgMy back hurts when I sit down.It’s been going on for 10 years. It really doesn’t matter where I am — at work, at a restaurant, even on our couch at home. My lower back screams, “Stop sitting!”To try to reduce the pain, I bought a kneeling chair at work. Then I got a standing desk. Then I went back to a regular chair because standing became painful.I’ve seen physical therapists, orthopedic surgeons and pain specialists. I’ve mastered Pilates, increased flexibility and strengthened muscles. At one point, my abs were so strong my husband nicknamed them “the plate.”All these treatments helped a bit, at first. But the pain never really went away. So a few years ago, I decided to accept reality: Sitting down is — and will always be — painful for me.Then back in November, I walked into the studio of Jenn Sherer in Palo Alto, Calif. She is part of a growing movement on the West Coast to teach people to move and sit and stand as they did in the past — and as they still do in other parts of the world. For the past 8 years, Sherer has been helping people reduce their back pain.I was interviewing Sherer for a story about bending. But she could tell I was in pain. So I told her my story.Her response left me speechless: “Sitting is a place where you can find heaven in your joints and in your back,” she says. “It’s not sitting that’s causing the pain, it’s how you’re sitting.”Do you want me to show you how?”Do hunter-gatherers sit less than we do?Recently there’s been a lot of talk about how much Americans sit.There’s a perception that we sit way more than any other culture out there — or even any culture throughout time. For the first time in human history, we sit for these long stretches, day after day.Anthropologist David Raichlen at the University of Arizona says that is not accurate.”No. Not from our data,” says Raichlen.Raichlen studies modern hunter-gatherers called Hadza, in Tanzania. They live primarily off wild foods, such as tubers, honey and barbecued porcupines. And to acquire this food, there’s no doubt they are active.They climb and chop trees to get honey. They dig for tubers and pound nuts.”They do a lot of upper body work,” Raichlen says. “And they spend quite a bit of time walking — at a pretty high rate of speed.”On average, Hadza adults spend about 75 minutes each day exercising, Raichlen says. That amount is way more than most Americans exercise. Many of us can’t muster a measly 2.5 hours each week, as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. So there’s no doubt the Hadza are in better cardiovascular health than most Americans.But do the Hadza actually sit less than we do?A few years ago, Raichlen and colleagues decided to find out. They strapped heart-rate monitors onto nearly 50 Hadza adults for eight weeks and measured how often each day, they were just, well … sitting around. The results shocked Raichlen.”The Hadza are in resting postures about as much as we Americans are,” he says. “It’s about 10 hours a day.”By comparison, Americans sit about nine to 13 hours each day, on average, a study reported in 2016.But here’s the thing: The Hadza don’t seem to have the back issues that we Americans have, even as they age.”Not that we have found,” Raichlen says. “There hasn’t been a ton of studies looking into muscle and joint pain in the Hadza groups, but people are highly active across the life span. There are some declines in activity with age but nowhere near what you get in the U.S.”Not how much, but how we sitSo maybe Sherer is right. Maybe the problem, when it comes to back pain, isn’t how much Americans are sitting, but the way we’re sitting.”Yes, I think that’s probably a big part of the story,” Raichlen says.Orthopedic surgeon Nomi Khan agrees.”Most of us do not sit well, and we’ve certainly been putting a lot more stress on our spines,” says Khan, who operates on spines at Sutters Health’s Palo Alto Medical Foundation.If we change the way we sit, Khan says, it will help to decrease back problems.”We should sit less, and we should sit better,” he says.Over the past century or so, many Americans have lost the art of sitting, he says. Most people in the U.S. — even children — are sitting in one particular way that’s stressing their backs. You might not realize you’re doing it. But it’s super easy to see in other people.Here’s how: Take a look at people who are sitting down – not face-on but rather from the side, in profile, so you can see the shape of their spine.There’s a high probability their back is curving like the letter C — or some version of C. Or it might make you think of a cashew nut, sitting in the chair. There are two telltale signs: Their shoulders curve over and their butts curve under. That posture is hurting their backs, Khan says.”Most people tend to round out their backs when they sit,” Khan says. “Their spine is in an improper position, and they will tend to have more back problems.”Back problems crop up because sitting like a C — or a cashew nut — can damage the little shock absorbers in the spine, called the intervertebral disks.”You can think of a disk as a jelly doughnut,” Khan says. “Sitting like a C puts a lot more pressure on the front of the doughnut than on the back.”And what happens when you press down on one side of a jelly doughnut but not the other side? Jelly can squirt out.Your spinal disks aren’t much different. Sitting in a C-shape, over time, can cause disk degeneration. Or one side of a disk can start to bulge. “The disk can then push against nerves, or it can rupture,” says biomechanist William Marras, who directs the Spine Research Institute at Ohio State University.”When the disks get messed up, you’ve got real problems,” Marras says. “So everything we do in biomechanics is to try to protect the disks.”Straightening out the CAt Sherer’s studio, she pulls a up a photo of gray-haired man sitting at a loom. He must be at least in his 60s.”This is taken in Rajasthan, India,” Sherer says. “The man sits at the loom weaving, for hours and hours every day, just like we do at a computer,” she says. “And yet his spine is still elongated.”Elongated is an understatement. This man’s spine is straight as an exclamation point. His shoulders are rolled back. His muscles looked relaxed and flexible.I’ve seen similar sitting postures in other rural pockets around the world — for example, in eastern Liberia during the Ebola outbreak and in the Yucatán countryside. (Basically anywhere people still do a lot of hip-hinging when they bend over. Because what do you do when you sit down? First you bend over.)In fact, you don’t have to go back very far in history to find the same posture here in the U.S. Photos and drawings from the early 20th century show that many Americans sat with straight backs and shoulders rolled back, similar to the man at the loom. Today, you can find a similar posture with babies and young children.So what happened?One of the problems, Sherer says, is our culture focuses on trying to fix the upper body. “Sit up straight,” parents and teachers say, and most of us immediately stick our chests out.But that’s the last thing you want to do, Sherer says.”Even just hearing the word ‘spine’ makes people lift their chest because they want to have ‘proper posture,’ ” she adds. “But when I see it, I’m like, ‘No! That’s what causes back pain. Lifting your chest is going to make your back pain worse.’ “Instead of focusing on the chest or shoulders, Sherer says, we need to turn our attention to a body part that is lower down, below the waist: the pelvis.Or to put another way — your butt.”The most important thing to change to reduce back pain is your pelvis position,” she says. “It’s like a stack of toy blocks. If the blocks at the bottom aren’t sturdy, then the top has no chance.”Pull your tail out so it can wagSitting in Sherer’s studio, I glance over at my profile in the mirror. And right away, I see the cashew shape. It doesn’t look pretty. My shoulders are rolled over my chest, and my pelvis is tucked under my spine.To figure out how to shift your pelvis into a healthier position, Sherer says to imagine for a minute you have a tail. If we were designed like dogs, the tail would be right at the base of your spine.”When you sit with a C shape in your spine, you’re sitting on this tail,” Sherer says. “It’s kind of like a dog with its tail between its legs, who is scared and frightened.”To straighten out the C shape, Sherer says, “we need to position the pelvis in a way that this tail could wag.”In other words, we need to untuck our tails. To do that, Sherer says, you need to bend over properly when you go to sit down.”Bend over?” I ask. “Do I bend when I sit down?””Yes!” Sherer exclaims. “Every time you sit down, you bend somewhere.”And where you bend determines how you will sit.If you bend at the waist, which many Americans do, then you will likely sit with a C or cashew shape.If you bend at the hips (as we learned about in a previous story), you’re more likely to sit correctly with your tail untucked.”Bending at the hips can be hard for many people to figure out,” Sherer says. “It’s a bit counterintuitive.”But she has a trick to help people learn.”Stand up and spread your heels about 12 inches apart,” she says. Now, put your hand on your pubic bone — like a fig leaf covering up Adam in the Bible, she explains.”When you bend over, you want to let this fig leaf — your pubic bone — move through your legs,” she says. “This creates a crease between your pelvis and legs.”This action also pretty much pokes your butt out, behind your spine. “Now go ahead, sit down,” Sherer says.Now my butt — or my imaginary tail — is behind my spine.The next step is to relax the muscles in your back and chest. “Stop sticking your chest,” Sherer says. Then the rest of the spinal vertebrae can stack up in one straight line, like an I instead of a C.The crazy part, Sherer says, is that when the tail comes out, some of the tight muscles in your legs will actually start to relax or stretch.”If you untuck your pelvis while you sit, your quadriceps muscles can relax, and then your hamstrings can stretch,” Sherer says.I could definitely feel my quads relax. The muscles felt like butter set on a warm pan: They softened and seemed to melt.Man, this felt good. “Oh wow!” I exclaimed, as a chill went up my body.If you don’t feel your hamstrings stretch — and your quads don’t relax — you’re probably not doing the action correctly, Sherer says.”Then you’re probably using your lower back muscles to push your butt out,” she says. “That can cause more back pain. You don’t want to do that.”How am I sitting now?After leaving Sherer’s studio, I realized that I had been sitting with my tail — or pelvis— tucked for decades. And it wasn’t easy to fix. I had to return to Sherer’s studio for many appointments and work hard, every day, to learn how to untuck my pelvis while sitting at my desk.But little by little, the muscles around my hips started to loosen up. The pain began to dissipate, very slowly.After mastering the new sitting position, I decided to visit Khan to get his opinion. “Do you want to look at my pelvis and see what you think about how I’m sitting?” I asked the spine surgeon.Khan took his hand and placed it on the base of my spine, right at the top of my pelvis.”You’re sitting perfectly,” he said nonchalantly. “Because you’re basically sticking your butt back and creating this little curve at the lower part of your spine.””If you sit like this, you’re going to put a lot less stress on your spine and have less back issues,” Khan added.And as an added bonus, I feel like I’m following the spinal pose of Jennifer Lopez: curvy on the bottom and straight on top. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.last_img read more


Primary care doctors are really good at checking s


first_imgPrimary care doctors are really good at checking seniors’ cholesterol levels and blood pressure but often fail to use tests that could detect dementia.Fewer than half of primary care doctors surveyed say they routinely test patients 65 and older for problems with memory and thinking, according to a report released Tuesday by the Alzheimer’s Association.And just 16 percent of older patients surveyed say they receive regular cognitive assessments during routine health checkups, the report says.In contrast, 91 percent of seniors say their annual visits include a blood pressure check, and 83 percent say they include a cholesterol test.”This cognitive assessment should be part of every senior’s annual wellness visit,” says Keith Fargo, director of scientific programs and outreach for the Alzheimer’s Association. “But we’re seeing that it’s simply not happening.”A cognitive assessment typically takes a few minutes and may include questioning the patient or the patient’s family, observing the patient’s interactions or using short verbal or written tests.Medicare has made a cognitive evaluation a required part of annual wellness visits.Yet because doctors often skip the evaluation, many seniors are diagnosed only when they are severely impaired, Fargo says. As a result, it is often too late for the patient to plan for the future or enter a clinical trial.”The first person who gets a drug that stops their Alzheimer’s disease will get that drug in the context of a clinical trial,” Fargo says. “And that’s only going to happen to someone who knows they have cognitive decline.”The report found that 82 percent of seniors think it’s important to have their thinking and memory checked out regularly. And 94 percent of primary care physicians say it’s important to assess every patient 65 and older for cognitive impairment.Yet many doctors remain hesitant to broach the subject of cognitive testing with their older patients, says Joanne Pike, chief program officer of the Alzheimer’s Association.”Usually what we’re seeing is that physicians are waiting for the senior to bring any concerns to them,” Pike says.And seniors rarely do that, for a variety of reasons, Pike says. “Some of it could be fear, some of it could be stigma and some of it could be a little bit of, unfortunately, people believe that there’s not a benefit to knowing about the disease or dementia,” Pike says.One common fear among doctors is that they will harm an older patient by doing an assessment that reveals a cognitive problem, says Nicole Fowler, an assistant professor of medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine and a scientist with the Regenstrief Institute’s Center for Aging Research.So Fowler and a team of researchers did a study to see whether patients were harmed. “And what we found actually in that study is that there wasn’t any harm, so there was no increase in rates of depression or anxiety in older adults who were screened,” she says.Even so, it can be hard to get seniors who have a cognitive problem to see a specialist and get the right sort of care and counseling, Fowler says. At least half the time, she says, patients refuse to act on the results of a cognitive assessment.The solution is to have the medical system take a more active role in keeping in touch with people who’ve had a screening test. “We would never send somebody for a mammogram and then never follow up with them,” she says.Some primary care doctors resist performing routine cognitive screening because studies haven’t shown a clear benefit, says Dr. Sheryl Sun, chief of internal medicine at Kaiser Permanente in Santa Clara, Calif.The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, for example, says the current evidence on cognitive screening is insufficient to assess whether it does more harm or good.So it’s hard to justify spending valuable time during a patient’s visit to do a cognitive assessment, Sun says. “If you spend time doing things of questionable value, you might not get to the things that are of proven value,” like screening for heart disease or diabetes, she says.”Also, primary doctors who know their patients well don’t need formal tests to detect cognitive problems,” Sun says. “We will notice a change within a few minutes of walking in the exam room.”Cognitive tests make sense when a doctor suspects a problem, Sun says. But they probably won’t become routine until researchers develop an effective treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more


What kind of person are youThats the question th


first_imgWhat kind of person are you?That’s the question that a personality test called the Big Five seeks to answer. You respond to a series of statements about yourself – everything from “I have a kind word for everyone” to “I get chores done right away” – by agreeing, disagreeing or being neutral. Your final score gauges you on a quintet of characteristics: Openness, Conscientiousness, Agreeableness, Extroversion and Neuroticism (or Emotional Stability, depending on which version of the test you take).Why these five traits?Starting in the 1940s psychologists began asking people how they’d describe themselves or another person’s personality. “They arrived at pretty much the same set of five dimensions,” says Christopher Soto, a psychologist at Colby College, who studies personality traits.The term “Big Five” was coined by a psychologist named Lew Goldberg in 1981, according to Soto, and came into common usage among psychologists by the 1990s. (You can try the test for yourself here.) And it’s not just pop psychology. Studies show that whether you are more conscientious and open or more extroverted and agreeable can influence the career you choose, how well you do in your job — and how much money you make. “A lot of companies use this [test] for hiring decisions or for allocation of different workers to different types of tasks,” says Karen Macours of the Paris School of Economics.The Big Five test began in the United States and then spread to Europe. It’s commonly used in what are known as WEIRD countries, an acronym that stands for “White Educated Industrialized Rich Developed.”In more recent years, it’s been introduced in developing countries, administered by researchers and some development organizations to get a sense of people’s skills in emerging labor markets.For example, “the World Bank has a big study that looked into the match between what kinds of skills the employers are looking for and what kinds of skills the population has,” says Rachid Laajaj, economist at Universidad de Los Andes, Bogota, Colombia.But in a new study published Wednesday in Science Advances, Macours, Laajaj and their colleagues found out that something weird is going on with the test in non-WEIRD countries. The researchers looked at data from previous studies that included online surveys as well as in-person tests conducted in 23 middle- and low-income countries and often conducted in the local language. They found that the test wasn’t always a reliable measure of personality traits in these places. One problem has to do with contradictory answers. The survey has some questions that measure the same thing. For example, “Is systematic, likes to keep things in order” and “Can be somewhat careless” both assess conscientiousness. Someone who thinks of themselves as organized and conscientiousness would “Strongly Agree” with the first statement and “Strongly Disagree” with the second statement. And that’s what researchers have previously found in WEIRD countries.But on analyzing all the data from the non-WEIRD countries, Laajaj and his colleagues found that people sometimes chose “Strongly Agree” to both those statements.They also found that in many of these developing countries, people tended to agree more than disagree with the Big Five statements.”This is what we call ‘acquiescence bias,’ or their willingness to agree more than disagree,” says Macours.”It happens more for some questions than others,” says Laajaj. “And some people agree more than others. In countries with less education, they tend to agree more.”The researchers aren’t sure why this happens, but it could be because people in these countries aren’t used to taking these kinds of surveys or thinking about their own personalities in the terms described in the survey, speculates Laajaj. It could also be that if the question or concept is foreign, “it’s harder to say no,” he adds.And someone who isn’t used to taking such surveys, say a farmer in India, might think “What do these guys want from me?” or “How will this information be used?” he says. If you’re already worried about the test, you might be less willing to disagree with its statements. And some people might agree because they want to look better, he says.Then there’s the issue of inconsistency. Sometimes the test didn’t yield the same results when taken by the same person twice. For example, in Kenya, more than 900 farmers took the test two times. Some farmers were interviewed by the same person both times, whereas others had two different interviewers.One would assume that each person would score similarly for the two tests regardless of who was interviewing them, says Soto, who was a consultant on the Kenya project, the results of which are used in the new study.”The most surprising thing to me was if someone was interviewed twice by the same interviewer then their responses across the two tests were pretty consistent,” he says. “But if they were interviewed by two different interviewers then their responses were often completely unrelated to each other.”So something about the difference in social interactions between the farmer and the two interviewers affected what people said about themselves, he says.”It could be very mild differences in how these questions are asked” that influence someone’s answer, says Laajaj.There’s another complication in the findings of the team. When people in developing countries took the online version of the test, their answers tended to be more consistent and mirror findings in the Western world. Perhaps that’s because the anonymity of the online surveys is an incentive to answer truthfully, he says.But he admits that the population of online test takers is likely to be more urban, more educated and better off than the ones taking the in-person survey.The new study “forces us to take a step back and say ‘OK if we want to use this stuff, we need to really think about why we’re using it and then develop better tools for measuring it,'” says David McKenzie, the lead economist at the development research group at the World Bank. That’s obvious to Esther Ngumbi, born in a village in Kenya and now an entomologist at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She wasn’t involved in this study.”Duh!” she says. “You can’t just copy and duplicate your experiment in different environments without really adapting to the local setting.”The environment is a key factor in all science experiments, says Ngumbi. And people’s environments shape their behaviors and how they think about themselves.”For example, I grew up in Kenya,” says Ngumbi. “Now I live in the United States and my thinking and actions have changed because my environment has changed. Now I’m more conscious about time, because time is of the essence here.” So back in Kenya, Ngumbi might not have given much thought to questions about being punctual. But now being punctual is something she values.”It’s a fascinating and important study,” says Ara Norenzayan, a psychologist at the University of British Columbia. He says the findings show that psychology studies created and tested in developed countries don’t necessarily “travel well” to other regions.In fact, Norenzayan and his colleagues coined the term WEIRD in 2010. They published a review paper titled “The Weirdest People In the World?” to call attention to the fact that the vast majority of psychology studies are done in rich Western countries with mostly white people.”Ninety-six percent of psychology studies are in Western populations, which is something like 12% of the world population,” he says.Soto agrees. “As research psychologists we mostly work with samples that are easy to get for us, which is mostly because they self-select themselves to do things online or students at colleges and universities, not just in the U.S. but around the world,” he says.That’s why educated, middle-class and liberal people are over-represented in these studies, says Norenzayan, and psychologists often assume that their results apply to other parts of the world as well. “We often get into trouble with that assumption.” And the new study illustrates why. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more


Two new disabled MPs who won their seats in last w


first_imgTwo new disabled MPs who won their seats in last week’s general election have both pledged to use their time in parliament to fight for the rights of disabled people.Marsha de Cordova and Jared O’Mara both scored unexpected victories for the Labour party as part of an election upset that saw Jeremy Corby’s party perform far better than had been predicted by most of the media and polling companies.Disabled Tory ministers Robert Halfon – who was sacked from his frontbench role this week in Theresa May’s post-election reshuffle – and Paul Maynard were both re-elected as MPs, as was Labour’s shadow minister for disabled people, Marie Rimmer.Stephen Lloyd won back Eastbourne for the Liberal Democrats, after previously serving as MP for the town between 2010 and 2015.Among disabled candidates who narrowly failed to win seats were the Labour trio of Mary Griffiths Clarke in Arfon, north Wales, Pam Duncan Glancy in Glasgow North, and Wayne Blackburn in Pendle, while Kelly-Marie Blundell came second for the Liberal Democrats in Lewes, Sussex, and Labour’s Heather Peto came a distant second to the Conservatives in Rutland and Melton.In one of the shocks of election night, De Cordova (pictured), who had been a Lambeth councillor and engagement and advocacy director for the sight loss charity Thomas Pocklington Trust, overturned a majority of nearly 8,000 to beat Tory former health minister Jane Ellison by more than 2,000 votes in Battersea, south London.In her acceptance speech, she said: “As a visually-impaired person myself, I feel passionately about the rights of disabled people.“Accessibility in our public places and on public transport still falls short of what is reasonable. I will use my time in parliament to lobby for improvements in these areas.“In the fifth richest country in the world, there can be no excuses for leaving behind a large number of our citizens.”She also pledged that Labour would fight the “back door” privatisation of the NHS by the Tories and the attack on public services “by a Tory government that cares little about the many and that has proven that they only look after the few”, and that she would work with the mayor of London, Labour’s Sadiq Khan, to tackle the lack of social housing being built in her constituency.An even more high-profile victory saw another disabled Labour politician, Jared O’Mara, defeat the Liberal Democrat former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg in his Sheffield Hallam constituency, overturning a majority of more than 2,000 votes in 2015 to win himself by a similar margin.O’Mara, who has a background of working with disability organisations in Sheffield, said in his acceptance speech: “20 years ago, there was a 15-year-old boy with cerebral palsy who went to his careers adviser at school and his careers advisor asked him, ‘What would you like to be when you grow up?’“And that 15-year-old boy with cerebral palsy said, ‘I’d like to be a politician.’“If you haven’t noticed already, that boy is me, I do have cerebral palsy and I want every single disabled person out there to know, everybody that’s got learning difficulties, everybody who has mental health issues, everybody who has a physical disability like me, or has any illness, I will be on your side, I will be your ally and friend and champion in Westminster.”In a blog written for the disability charity Scope last year, when he stood unsuccessfully as a candidate for Sheffield council, he said that disabled election candidates can be “more passionate, resilient, empathetic and hard working than non-disabled candidates by virtue of everything being harder for us in life”.He also spoke of his anger at the government’s decision to close the Access to Elected Office Fund (AEOF) after the 2015 general election.The fund had helped local and general election candidates with their extra disability-related costs, and O’Mara said its closure had cost him “a large three figure sum” in fighting the council election.He said then that more should be done to support disabled people into public life, and called for a return of the fund, as well as “full legal aid provision for disability discrimination cases”, and for political parties to choose some parliamentary candidates from shortlists made up only of disabled people.Although there appear to be only six MPs who self-identify as disabled people, there are believed to be others who would be considered as disabled people under the Equality Act because of the significant impact of long-term health conditions or impairments – potentially including the prime minister Theresa May, who has diabetes – but who do not consider themselves to be disabled people.Labour’s shadow home secretary Diane Abbott could be one of them, after she revealed this week – following Tory attacks during the election campaign that focused on her performance in media interviews – that she was diagnosed with diabetes two years ago and that her health had affected her performance during the election campaign.She said that facing a string of interviews without eating enough food had affected her blood sugar levels.Phyl Meyer, project manager for Inclusion Scotland’s Access to Elected Office Fund (Scotland), which is funded by the Scottish government and provides financial support for disabled candidates for Scottish local and devolved elections, said it had been “very disappointing to have been able to offer so much support which made such a big difference to disabled candidates in the local elections [earlier this year] and not to have been able to do that for the Westminster elections”.He said that holding a snap election had also affected potential disabled candidates,He added: “The very act of holding a snap election is hugely disadvantageous to disabled candidates.“Making arrangements like personal assistants and communication support in such a short timescale is just totally unrealistic.”Meyer said Inclusion Scotland was keen to push for job-sharing to be allowed for MPs.He said: “It is very, very clear to us that without some sort of job-sharing option we are never going to achieve full inclusion for disabled people in elected office, unless the structure changes dramatically.”Inclusion Scotland is considering setting up a new campaign to push for more elected disabled politicians, hopefully with backing from many of the 40-plus political activists who received support from the fund at the last local council elections in May.It would replace the successful One in Five project, which campaigned for greater representation of disabled people in Scottish politics but has now closed down.Deborah King, co-founder of Disability Politics UK, has campaigned for job-sharing to be allowed for MPs, and said she hoped the two new disabled MPs would back that campaign.She said: “Disabled people are under-represented in the Commons.“Hopefully, Marsha de Cordova and Jared O’Mara will support our campaign to get job-sharing for MPs.“This would enable other disabled people to become MPs. We need more disability rights activists to come forward and stand.”last_img read more


The system of Paralympic classification is being a


first_imgThe system of Paralympic classification is being abused by cheating British athletes in search of money and medals, a disabled peer and retired Paralympian has told MPs.Baroness [Tanni] Grey-Thompson told members of the Commons digital, culture, media and sport committee that there needed to be an independent review of the classification system so that Britain could become “the gold standard” for other countries.The peer, who won 11 Paralympic gold medals as a track athlete, was giving evidence as part of the committee’s inquiry into sports governance, following the publication of her independent report on the duty of care in sport, which was published in April.She told the MPs that about 10 per cent of the people who spoke to her during her review had raised concerns about “intentional misrepresentation” – cheating – in the classification system.And she said she believed that the system of classification was open to abuse, and was currently being abused.On the day she gave evidence to the committee’s inquiry, it published a series of witness statements from other retired and current disabled athletes, their relatives and officials, raising serious concerns about the system (see separate stories).The classification system is run by the national governing body of each Paralympic sport, while athletes competing internationally must also be tested by international classifiers.The process includes medical evidence, physical examinations and assessment of how the athlete functions in that sport, as well as observing them in competition.The International Paralympic Committee defines classification as grouping athletes into different classes according to how much their impairment “affects fundamental activities” in that sport and discipline.But misleading classifiers can allow athletes to compete against those whose impairments have a greater negative impact on attributes such as speed, coordination and strength.Asked why athletes could be encouraged to cheat, Baroness Grey-Thompson (pictured) said: “It’s medals, it’s money, it’s sponsorship, it’s media coverage.”She said there were “similarities” with the issue of doping in Olympic sport because of “what it can give you”.She said: “It’s somebody pretending they can do less than they can.”And she said she believed there had been an escalation in intentional misrepresentation since the lead-up to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.But she also said that some disabled athletes had been bullied into intentional misrepresentation.She said: “Within a bullying environment it is very easy to shut down athletes having an opinion, free choice.“You can institutionalise them, they can lose self-belief about what’s right and wrong.“They want to compete, they want to be in the GB team because it’s a massive privilege to be there wearing a tracksuit, so it is possible to influence athletes or for athletes to make a decision that that’s a route that they want to go down.”She said there should be an independent review – with whistleblowing protection for witnesses – to discover how widespread such cheating was.But she added: “One of the things that has been raised with me is the cost of an independent investigation. I don’t think integrity has too high a cost.”Baroness Grey-Thompson said she wanted Britain to be “the absolute gold standard of integrity and independence” when it came to classification, and to be the “world leader”.She also backed the idea of appointing an independent ombudsman to examine concerns raised across British sport, including issues about the classification system.She said it was currently “very difficult” for athletes to raise such concerns.Baroness Grey-Thompson said that, during her year-long, wide-ranging review into the duty of care in sport, she had heard “horrific” examples of Paralympic and Olympic athletes who had experienced “bullying, intimidation, sexual harassment, and worse”.She said: “That’s why I believe people need somewhere to go.”And she said that Paralympic athletes had told her that they had faced possible deselection from the team, the loss of funding, and the loss of media coverage, if they raised concerns about issues such as the classification system.Tory MP Damian Collins, who chairs the committee, said he and his colleagues had received “heart-rending” evidence from Paralympic athletes who had been left in a “desperate situation with no-one they can turn to for help” over concerns about classification.Baroness Grey-Thompson said there needed to be independent oversight of the classification system.And she agreed with MP Ian Lucas that the integrity of the Paralympic movement was at stake if measures were not taken to deal with the problem.But she said the International Paralympic Committee was now talking about the need for greater “professionalisation” of the classification system, while the British Paralympic Association would shortly publish a new classification code and was discussing the need for “education” about the system and the need for an appeal process.In her written evidence to the committee, Baroness Grey-Thompson says she received allegations of athletes cheating – or being bullied into cheating – the classification system, and a fear of repercussions if athletes reported concerns about the issue.She adds: “The inescapable fact is I was approached by athletes and other stakeholders with very serious concerns about many aspects of the classification system, across a wide range of sports, in the UK. “Until we have addressed those concerns openly and transparently, my fear is that sports in the UK will not be trusted.”last_img read more


Facebook CEO plans 2019 forums on techs role in society


first_imgFacebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg plans forums in 2019 on the role of technology in society. © 2019 AFP “My challenge for 2019 is to host a series of public discussions about the future of technology in society—the opportunities, the challenges, the hopes and the anxieties,” Zuckerberg wrote on Facebook.The announcement follows a difficult period for the social media company, which has come under fire for its handling of private consumer data and its brass-knuckles approach to company critics, among other issues.Zuckerberg, without directly acknowledging the criticism, said he recognized the need to get out of his comfort zone.”I’m an engineer, and I used to just build out my ideas and hope they’d mostly speak for themselves,” he wrote.”But given the importance of what we do, that doesn’t cut it anymore. So I’m going to put myself out there more than I’ve been comfortable with and engage more in some of these debates about the future, the tradeoffs we face, and where we want to go.”Zuckerberg plans a series of forums that will be broadcast on Facebook, Facebook-owned Instagram or other media.Zuckerberg has made a practice of setting a personal goal each January, such as running 365 miles during the year, or visiting all 50 of the United States.But Zuckerberg’s statement on Tuesday suggested he recognized there was still work to do on the 2018 goal of “fixing” problems at Facebook, such as safeguarding the site from misinformation and propaganda that many experts believe affected the 2016 US presidential election and the Brexit vote in Britain.”Last year, I focused almost all my time on addressing important issues around elections, speech, privacy and well-being,” Zuckerberg wrote.”Facebook is a different company now than it was a couple of years ago because of a much greater focus on these questions. These issues are complex and we will continue focusing on them for years to come.” Citation: Facebook CEO plans 2019 forums on tech’s role in society (2019, January 9) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-facebook-ceo-forums-tech-role.html 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.center_img Explore further Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg unveiled his personal goal for 2019 on Tuesday: convening a series of public forums on how technology can better serve society. Zuckerberg sees ‘progress’ for Facebook after tumultuous yearlast_img read more