At long last, Humboldt State softball will get to play a home series this weekend

first_imgArcata >> Almost identical to last season, the Humboldt State softball team has played all of its first 10 conference games anywhere but at its home field.That, as the middle of March is almost here, is about to change.Seriously, this isn’t a drill.Following postponements due to weather, playing home games on the road because of rain and having a three-week break in between the opening season and its next slotted games, Humboldt State will finally get a chance to play a game within Humboldt …last_img

Young South African in the US for science programme

first_imgLehlogonolo Msuma is representing South Africa at the Broadcom Masters (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) International programme in the US for her research into marula seedlings.Lehlogonolo “Nolo” Msuma is in the US from 14 to 19 May to take part in the Broadcom Masters (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) International programme. (Image: Bush Babies Environmental Education, Facebook)Compiled by Priya PitamberA young South African scientist is in the US participating in the Broadcom Masters (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) International programme.Thirteen-year-old Lehlogonolo “Nolo” Msuma’s inquiring mind led her to question why there were only old marula trees in her community, in Phalaborwa in Limpopo.“We only know that big trees are being eaten by elephants, goats, cows and wanted to know [what] the small seedlings of marula were being eaten by; I found out that they were being eaten by rodents,” she told the national broadcaster, the SABC.“Marula trees, which are seeing a decline worldwide, are important for Nolo’s community because they provide fruit and are home to many birds as well as larger animals,” reads the Broadcom Masters Facebook page.Nolo is in Los Angeles from 14 to 19 May “for a week of fun and engaging hands-on science and engineering activities”.Research and findingsNolo said she found that the Bushbuck gabble and the Namaqua rock rat were eating the marula seedlings daily.In her project, she outlines various ways in which this can be curbed to allow the trees to grow.The fruit from the tree is used in many ways in her community: to ferment alcohol, and to make soap and jam.Nolo would like to become an environmental scientist because she believes South Africa can make positive contributions to global research.The programmeAccording to the Broadcom Masters International website, each delegate is chosen for “their excellence in science, engineering and leadership”.“They are rising stars who come together to represent their nations for this international exchange.”Participants come from Japan, Mexico, South Korea, Puerto Rico and many more countries.“There is a sense of urgency to inspire more young people to become the scientists and engineers of the future,” said Paula Golden, president of the Broadcom Foundation, speaking about the national leg of the programme in the US.“Our quality of life depends upon solving the grand challenges in health care, transportation, communication, environmental protection and sustainability.”About NoloNolo is a Grade 8 pupil at Gerson Ntjie High School and an ambassador for the Bush Babies Environmental Programme.School principal Vivian Kganyago said she hoped other students would follow in Nolo’s footsteps, despite the school not having a lab in which to work. “I hope Gerson will be known not only provincially, nationally but internationally,” she said.See Nolo speak ahead of her departure to the US:Other than an interest in environmental science, she “enjoys reading, writing poetry, singing, and researching the latest fashion trends”, reads the Broadcom Masters Facebook page.Sources: Broadcom Masters, SABCWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

Resilience: Designing Homes for More Intense Storms

first_imgAlong with more intense rainfall events, we can expect stronger winds. Some of these winds will be from tropical storms whose intensity is magnified as their air masses pass over a warmer South Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. Others of the winds will be more localized thunderstorms that result from air masses over land warming and rising into intense cumulonimbus clouds.In coastal areas, sea level rise will play into this, as coastal storms increasingly cause storm surges — the situation that befell New Orleans in 2005 with Hurricane Katrina. Even a few inches of sea level rise dramatically increases vulnerability to storm surges. How quickly sea levels will rise depends on the ice mass on Greenland, and scientists are far more worried about this than they were just a few short years ago. RELATED ARTICLES Safe roomsIn parts of the country where tornadoes and hurricanes are most common, we should consider installing safe rooms to provide a safe haven in an extreme wind event. These are small bunkers in our homes or garages, anchored to concrete slabs and typically built of reinforced masonry block with steel-beam roofs.Such rooms are typically not connected to the walls of the house, and they should be equipped with battery-powered or wind-up radios, flashlights, etc. Excellent information on safe room design and construction is available from FEMA.— — —In this resilient design series, I’m covering how to improve the resilience of our homes and communities, including strategies that help us function well in the aftermath of a major storm or event that results in lost power, interruptions in heating fuel, or water shortages. We’ll see that resilient design is a life-safety issue that is critical for the security and wellbeing of families in a future of climate uncertainty and ever-present risk of terrorism.Alex is founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and executive editor of Environmental Building News. To keep up with his latest articles and musings, you can sign up for his Twitter feed. Defining Habitable Temperatures Designing Homes and Communities That Can Survive a DisasterResilient CommunitiesResilient Design: Passive Solar HeatResilient Design: Dramatically Better Building Envelopes Designing Houses and Communities To Be Smarter and More ResilientMaking the Case for Resilient DesignBuilding Resilience for a ‘Close Encounter’ with DisasterGreen Building Priority #9 – Create Resilient HousesMaking Houses Resilient to Power Outages Anyone who was in Vermont in late August of this year and witnessed the raging floodwaters from tropical storm Irene gained an intimate view of the vulnerabilities we face from intense storms and flooding. Hundreds of miles of roadway were heavily damaged, dozens of bridges washed away, and some communities were cut off for weeks.Vermont is not alone. Throughout the Northeast, there was a 67% increase in heavy rainfall events (defined as the heaviest 1% of all rainfall events) from 1958 to 2007, according to the multi-agency U.S. Global Change Research Program. Resilient designThe bottom line is that we need to change the way we build our houses and design our communities to protect us from such storms. This is an important part of resilient design — which is the subject of this and the series of blogs that will follow.There are a lot of strategies that come into play with storm-resistant construction. A few of these are described below.center_img Building to stringent hurricane standardsIn designing homes that will hold up well in strong winds, we should borrow heavily from he Miami-Dade County Building Code, which includes a wide range of provisions, including hurricane tie-down strapping or clips that provide a continuous structural connection from foundation slab to roof, minimum 2×6 framing in exterior walls, minimum 19/32-inch plywood roof sheathing with 6-inch nail spacing at panel edges and 4-inch at gable ends, and hurricane-rated shingles. Other wind-resistant strategies include hip roofs that deflect winds, avoidance of deeply overhung entryways, and outward-opening doors that are held more tightly closed in heavy wind.Note that some measures for ensuring structural integrity in intense wind events conflict with strategies to improve energy performance or reduce resource use. The Miami-Dade County Hurricane Code, for example, calls for 16-inch on-center 2×6 exterior wall framing, double top plates, and corners comprised of a minimum of three studs — measures in direct opposition to advanced framing. Control of wind-driven rainAdequate overhangs are key to keeping rain away from homes. I like at least 24-inch-deep overhangs, in some cases even more. Gutters are advisable to capture rainwater, with downspouts and horizontal lines to carry collected water away from the house.Basement drainage should include continuous perimeter drains that extend to the bottom of the footings. Foundation walls or the slab edge (with slab-on-grade construction) should be coated with a dampproofing layer, covered with a foundation drainage board, and backfilled with free-draining crushed stone. The perimeter drains should drain to daylight if topography permits. And the ground surface should slope away from the house.Walls should be designed with rainscreen detailing that allows trapped moisture to escape and provides a pressure break for wind-driven rain, while allowing any moisture that does penetrate the siding to drain to the base of the wall or evaporate and escape. With an adequate overhang, the siding won’t even get wet with most storms. Climate scientists tell us to get used to itAs the planet warms over the coming decades, precipitation will increase overall — due to greater evaporation from bodies of water and, thus, more water vapor in the atmosphere — though there will be significant regional variation. Even in areas that see a drop in precipitation (an expected trend in much of the western U.S., for example), the rain that does fall is expected to increasingly fall in deluges. So, we need to prepare for more Hurricane Irenes and the resultant flooding. Control of stormwaterMore intense rainfall events will mean greater volumes of runoff, or stormwater flow. This means we should be installing larger-diameter storm sewers and culverts. It also means that we need to do everything we can to provide for infiltration of rainwater where it falls — so that we don’t need to transport that water at all.The latter can be accomplished by minimizing impermeable surfaces, providing infiltration trenches (filled with crushed stone) between adjacent impermeable surfaces such as sidewalk and driveway, installing permeable pavement, avoiding curbs along driveways and roads, and providing grassy swales and infiltration basins that allow runoff to spread out and soak into the ground.Along any waterways, we need to consider erosion risk. As we saw so clearly with tropical storm Irene in Vermont, intense rainfall events — particularly if the ground starts out nearly saturated — can result in streams and rivers quickly overflowing their banks. We need to provide for this in our placement of homes and outbuildings. The right plantings can help to stabilize banks and resist erosion.last_img read more

66% polling for two seats in Rajasthan

first_imgAn average of 66.11% polling for by-elections to two Assembly seats in Rajasthan took place on Monday. The polling in the two constituencies – Khinvsar in Nagaur disrict and Mandawa in Jhunjhunu district – was peaceful, with no untoward incident reported from anywhere.The Congress had lost both the Jat-dominated seats in the 2018 Assembly election. The bypolls were necessitated after the two sitting MLAs were elected to Lok Sabha in May this year.Mandawa MLA Narendra Khichar had won as the BJP MP from Jhunjhunu, while Rashtriya Loktantrik Party MLA from Khinvsar, Hanuman Beniwal, supported by BJP, had won from Nagaur in this year’s Lok Sabha elections.The Congress has fielded former MLA Rita Chaudhary, who is the daughter of veteran party leader, the late Ram Nnarayan Chaudhary, in Mandawa, and former Minister Harendra Mirdha, belonging to Nagaur district’s influential Mirdha family, in Khinvsar.The BJP sprang a surprise by fielding expelled Congress leader Sushila Sigra as its candidate in Mandawa and extended support to RLP candidate Narayan Beniwal as part of an alliance with the regional party floated last year. Mr. Narayan Beniwal is the younger brother of Mr. Hanuman Beniwal.According to the Chief Electoral Officer, 69.62% turnout of voters was reported in Mandawa and 62.61% in Khinvsar till 5:00 p.m., when the fifth round of polling ended. The low polling percentage has led to concern among both the major political parties.While Mr. Mirdha cast his vote at a polling booth in Khinvsar, Mr. Beniwal — a permanent resident of Nagaur district headquarters — could not exercise his franchise, as he is not a voter in the constituency.Extra securityIn Mandawa, 259 polling stations were set up for 2,27,414 voters and extra security arrangements were made for 60 booths identified as sensitive. Over 120 polling booths in Khinvsar were identified as sensitive and additional forces were sent for ensuring their security.Twelve candidates, including nine in Mandawa and three in Khinvsar, are in the fray for by-elections. Of the 200 Assembly seats, the ruling Congress has 106 MLAs, including the six who defected to the party from Bahujan Samaj Party last month.last_img read more

Eleven Persons Receive Governor-General Achievement Awards

first_img The Governor-General said the awardees have used their talents to give back and help others, adding that they are ‘peddlers of hope’ in their communities, and were selected because of their acts of selfless giving and service to others. Story Highlights Eleven persons were presented with the Governor-General Achievement Awards (GGAA) for the County of Surrey on April 26 at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel in St. Andrew.They have been recognised for their contribution to their community and country.Speaking at the ceremony, Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, urged Jamaicans to be steadfast in their activities to create a brighter future for all.He implored members of the society to “take the necessary action and to embark on activities that will inspire our fellow Jamaicans, affirm our values and energise our people for voluntary service in building a brighter Jamaica”.The Governor-General said the awardees have used their talents to give back and help others, adding that they are ‘peddlers of hope’ in their communities, and were selected because of their acts of selfless giving and service to others.He reported that more than 920 awards have been presented to individuals since the programme was instituted 28 years ago.“Thousands of individuals and many communities have been transformed through the impact of the GGAA,” the Governor-General said.The ceremony was held under the theme ‘Inspiring and Energising Communities to Serve’.Award recipients between 18 and 35 years of age are selected based on their academic achievements, while persons 35 and above must demonstrate evidence of leadership through innovative and sustainable community projects that impact  family, youth and education.The GGAA was established to acknowledge the meaningful contribution of individuals at the community level and to celebrate the success of persons who volunteer, while highlighting the impact of the recipients on community and national life. The GGAA was established to acknowledge the meaningful contribution of individuals at the community level and to celebrate the success of persons who volunteer, while highlighting the impact of the recipients on community and national life. Eleven persons were presented with the Governor-General Achievement Awards (GGAA) for the Country of Surrey on April 26 at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel in St. Andrew.last_img read more

Buffon reckons Neymars absence will be a huge miss

first_imgWith Neymar set to face a lengthy spell on the sidelines, Gianluigi Buffon has revealed the Champions League will be quite difficult for Paris Saint-Germain to winThe veteran Italian shot-stopper is not a stranger to Europe’s top-tier competition as his team heads into the crucial stages of the tournament.Neymar who has notched in 20 goals in 23 games this season will miss PSG’s last-16 tie against Manchester United due to a foot injury suffered last month..@neymarjr gives OTRO an exclusive look as he begins his road to recovery. We can’t wait to see you back on the pitch. #OurOtherClub pic.twitter.com/xYMzeZ9mSb— OTRO (@OTRO) February 2, 2019Buffon, 41, is yet to win the top European club competition in his illustrious career and the PSG goalkeeper said Neymar’s absence hurt his side’s chances.“Every year, I always thought it could be the right year. But it is now 24 years since I am trying to win the Champions League,” he said on Saturday and cited via FourFourTwo.Cristiano Ronaldo, Nemanja Vidic, Manchester UnitedVidic: “Ronaldo is the most professional footballer I’ve seen” Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Nemanja Vidic opened up on how a 21-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo’s professionalism left him stunned at Manchester United.“But it’s tough to do so. You have to be a bit lucky. Right now for us, it’s a particular time because Ney got injured.“For us, Ney is a significant player because he did incredible stuff for the team during the last three months.“For us, it’s dangerous not to have him.”With United’s resurgence in recent weeks, Thomas Tuchel knows his side are up for what could be a classic European tie, as the French side battle to land that elusive crown.PSG head to Old Trafford for the first leg of their tie against United on February 12.Gianluigi Buffon is concerned that Neymar’s injury means his 24-year wait for a Champions League title could continue 😱 pic.twitter.com/2KVSeT9JZa— Goal (@goal) February 3, 2019last_img read more

Budget Session likely to be stormy

first_imgWith less than a fortnight to go for the presentation of the Budget 2016, the divide between the two main Indian political parties – the BJP and the Congress – seems to be widening.While the BJP-led NDA government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is under attack for its handling of JNU students over the Afzal Guru death anniversary issue, the Congress is keen to take on the government head-on, using macroeconomic data and the latest political development to good effect, just days before Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is set to present the budget on Feb.29.At a press conference last Friday in New Delhi, Abhishek Singhvi, spokesperson for the Congress, took on the Modi government on a range of issues, from the alleged fake encounter of Ishrat Jahan to the JNU protests, besides the state of the economy.”Let us presume that Ishrat Jahan was a suspected terrorist. What is the course of action the BJP is proposing? That she should be liquidated in a false encounter? As a civilised country governed by law and order, should we not proceed by trying her in the court of law as Ajmal Kasab and Afzal Guru were tried? The BJP was advocating hanging them by the nearest lamp-post. How is India different from a banana republic if we too resort to such practices?” BusinessLine reported Singhvi as saying.Mocking the government for holding events such as “Make in India” without showing commensurate results on the ground, he said: “This clueless government has no idea on how to revive it (the economy) and they seem to move from one slogan and event to another without even attempting to address the real crisis at hand.”Singhvi also said that apart from the fact that 29 state-owned banks have written off Rs 1.14 lakh crore of bad debts during 2013-2015, the rupee, which was at 58.5 to a dollar when the BJP came to power, has dropped to 68.38, a fall of 17 percent. The NDA government is facing a grim situation, notwithstanding the description of Asia’s third largest economy as a “bright spot” by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.Retail inflation at a 17-month high in January, factory output (IIP) registering a second straight month of contraction in December, third quarter GDP growth rate coming at 7.3 percent, the lowest in the past three quarters, and merchandise exports registering decline for the 13th month in a row in December have emboldened the Congress – which was reduced to its lowest tally in its history after the 2014 general elections – to question the government’s performance on the economic front.Given the current political circumstances, Jaitley, who often says that “all political parties are with the government on economic legislations except the Congress,” may find it difficult to secure their support, given that they would find it politically expedient to go with the Congress.After all, the JD(U), the RJD and the Communists have found a common cause to take on the government and would not like to break ranks with the GOP (read the Congress) over the GST legislation, more so when crucial Assembly polls to five states – Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Puducherry – are round the corner. It would be politically naive to expect the Congress and the larger Opposition to support the NDA government at a time when it is politically weak.To use a stock market phrase, the Modi government is going through a bearish phase, much like the Sensex that posted its single biggest weekly fall in a year last week.The Budget Session needs to be seen in this context. The probability – a high one at that – of a united Opposition taking on the government over the JNU students’ issue and the Ishrat Jahan encounter case could mar the session. On the other hand, if the government is seen as unable to pass key economic legislations during the session, it would send the wrong signals to the marlets.last_img read more

Thousands flee fighting on Myanmars border with China

first_imgThousands of people fled heavy fighting on Myanmar’s northern border with China overnight, activists said Wednesday, as the government blocked a senior UN official from visiting the area.Clashes between the army and ethnic minority militias in Myanmar’s borderlands have intensified in recent months, undercutting Aung San Suu Kyi’s vow to bring peace to the country since her party took power in March.Dozens have been killed and thousands displaced since fresh fighting erupted between the Myanmar military and the ethnic minority Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in November.The unrest has rippled across Shan and Kachin states, threatening the next round of peace talks between the government, military and ethnic groups scheduled for February.Dashi Naw Lawn, secretary of the Kachin Network Development Foundation, said the army launched airstrikes near the border town of Laiza on Tuesday.“There was a big fight yesterday and the Myanmar army used planes to attack the area around Laiza,” he told AFP on Wednesday.“The fighting is getting worse and worse.”Kachin activist Khon Ja said some 3,600 people had fled from two IDP camps overnight to escape the violence.She cited testimonies from escapees saying around a third had crossed a river into China, while the rest were stranded on the Myanmar side.The UN’s relief agency said this week that 2,700 displaced people had been moved to new camps because of the clashes, warning there was not enough shelter to protect them against dropping temperatures.Myanmar’s army said its troops have killed seven KIA rebels and seized several bases over the weekend.The growing crisis comes as UN special rapporteur Yanghee Lee was barred from visiting the conflict area this week as part of a 12-day trip to probe escalating violence in the country.“She was not allowed to travel to Hpakant and Laiza,” said her spokesman Aye Win.On Friday she is expected to visit Rakhine state to probe claims the army has been carrying out severe human rights abuses against the Muslim Rohingya minority—allegations the government has denied.last_img read more

Visual Studio 2019 New features you should expect to see

first_imgMicrosoft announced Visual Studio 2019, the next major version of its signature IDE (Integrated Development Environment) for software design. This exciting news has come right on the heels of Microsoft’s acquisition of GitHub. According to Microsoft, the company is still in the “early planning phase” for Visual Studio 2019 and Visual Studio for Mac. Release timing will be shared “in the coming months,” with the company simply promising “to deliver Visual Studio 2019 quickly and iteratively.” Along with general improvements to make the developer tool more reliable and more productive, Microsoft has some concrete goals in mind. Last month at Build 2018 developers conference, Microsoft demonstrated two new Visual Studio previews: IntelliCode and Live Share. The former uses AI to offer intelligent suggestions that improve code quality and productivity, and the latter lets developers collaborate in real time with team members who can edit and debug directly from Visual Studio and Visual Studio Code. Specific features that will be delivered in VS2019 are not provided, rather Microsoft lists various themes that the project will address. Here are the major new features Microsoft will bring in Visual Studio 2019 in coming days : It will continue to explore connected capabilities such as Live Share, for users to collaborate in real time on the same code base worldwide. It wants to investigate making cloud development situations, such as working with online source repositories, smoother. Enhancements for AI-assisted development via IntelliCode and use of the Azure cloud to deliver AI-powered assistance to developers. Operational enhancements such as additional refactoring, quicker application load, faster builds, improved navigation, and improved debugging. The release date for VS2019 is not available yet, but VS2017 was released in March 2017 and was preceded by several preview builds throughout 2016. Similarly, one would expect the first preview build of VS2019 in late summer / early autumn this year.  Fortunately VS2019 is being designed to install side-by-side with existing VS2017 builds, so it will be easy to try out the new release when it is available. A key fact about this next release, according to Microsoft, is that it will remain a 32-bit application and will support Windows 7. Initial developer reactions indicate there are concerns about the unresolved issues and code quality problems with VS2017, and that it is premature to shift to VS2019.  Microsoft does not offer specifics, but does indicate that they are working to improve this with the development team. Read Next : Microsoft is going to acquire GitHub Unit Testing in .NET Core with Visual Studio 2017 for better code quality What’s new in Visual Studio 1.22last_img read more