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

Black Panther Continues Reign Atop DVD Bluray Disc Sales Charts

first_imgMarvel’s “Black Panther,” distributed by Walt Disney Studios, held back a pair of newcomers to handily top the home video sales charts for a second consecutive week.The top new release on NPD VideoScan overall disc sales chart, which tracks combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc unit sales, and the dedicated Blu-ray Disc chart the week ended May 26 was 20th Century Fox’s spy thriller “Red Sparrow,” which debuted at No. 2 selling 22% as many discs as the returning superhero actioner.“Sparrow” stars Jennifer Lawrence as a Russian ballerina who is forced into becoming a seductive secret agent after her dancing career is cut short due to injury. It earned $46.9 million at the domestic box office.No. 3 on both charts was Warner’s “Game Night,” a comedy about a group of friends who are caught up in a life-and-death caper that they believe is an elaborate role-playing game. It took in $68.9 million at U.S. theaters. Top 10 Media Play News rental chart for the week ended 5/27/18:1. Game Night (new)2. Black Panther3. 12 Strong4. Peter Rabbit5. Den of Thieves6. Fifty Shades Freed7. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle8. The Greatest Showman9. Maze Runner: The Death Cure10. Early Man (new)For complete sales and rental charts, visit MediaPlayNews.com ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 Rounding out the top five on both charts were Universal Pictures’ “Fifty Shades Freed” at No. 4 and Fox’s “The Greatest Showman” at No. 5.Three other new releases managed to crack the top 20, led by Warner’s “The 15:17 to Paris,” which bowed at No. 6 overall and No. 8 on the Blu-ray Disc sales chart. The Clint Eastwood-directed docudrama, which earned $36.3 million domestically, tells the story of the three American servicemen (playing themselves) who foiled a terrorist attack on a European train in 2015.Debuting at No. 11 (No. 14 on the Blu-ray Disc Sales chart) was the Image Entertainment fantasy “I Kill Giants,” followed by Lionsgate’s “Early Man,” a stop-motion animated film from the creators of “Wallace and Gromit,” at No. 12 (No. 13 on the Blu-ray chart).Universal’s re-release of the four “Jurassic Park” films in a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray boxed set pushed the “Jurassic Park Collection” back onto the charts at No. 15 overall and No. 11 on the Blu-ray charts. The new 4K edition accounted for 73% of total unit sales of the four-movie set. A fifth film, “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom,” is slated for theaters June 22.Among the new releases, “Red Sparrow” saw 62% of its total copies sold in the Blu-ray format, with 12% of the total being in the UHD format. Blu-ray accounted for 48% of “Game Night” and “I Kill Giants” sales, 45% for “15:17 to Paris,” and 50% for “Early Man.”For the second week of “Black Panther,” Blu-ray contributed 68% to its total copies sold, with 11% from UHD Blu-ray.On the Media Play News rental chart for the week ended May 27, “Game Night” debuted at No. 1, with “Black Panther” slipping a spot to No. 2.Warner’s “12 Strong” dropped to No. 3, while Sony Pictures’ Peter Rabbit and Universal’s Den of Thieves held onto No. 4 and No. 5, respectively.“Early Man” entered the rental chart at No. 10.John Latchem is executive editor of Media Play News.Top 20 NPD VideoScan First Alert chart for the week ended 5/26/18:1. Black Panther2. Red Sparrow (new)3. Game Night (new)4. Fifty Shades Freed5. The Greatest Showman6. The 15:17 to Paris (new)7. Star Wars: Episode VIII — The Last Jedi8. Peter Rabbit9. Deadpool10. Thor: Ragnarok11. I Kill Giants (new)12. Early Man (new)13. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle14. 12 Strong15. Jurassic Park Collection16. Coco17. Maze Runner: The Death Cure18. Rick and Morty: Season 319. Spider-Man: Homecoming20. Justice League Popular on Variety last_img read more

Canadian market picking up steam for Eurail 2 weeks left for Extra

first_img TORONTO — More than 16,000 Canadian passengers travelled through Europe on Eurail trains in 2016, and while it was a tough year from all inbound markets the rail company saw an uptick from Canada in the last few months.“It was a challenging year for us but especially from Canada we’ve been recovering since October 2016,” said Clarissa Mattos, Market Manager, Americas & Pacific, for Eurail Group. That’s when forward sales started to pick up.It didn’t hurt that Eurail launched its annual end of year promotion in mid-November, offering 20% off all Eurail passes for 2017 travel. The deal was available through the end of last year and not surprisingly “we had an extraordinary December from Canada,” said Mattos.Recently Eurail brought back its popular ‘Extra Days Promotion’, offering travellers up to five additional free travel days on all Eurail Passes purchased now through March 31.The limited-time offer is available across Eurail’s entire portfolio of passes, from the Global Pass to the One Country Pass, and can be purchased up to 11 months before departure.These generous savings are on top of the regular year-round perks that come with purchasing a Pass, like no luggage fees, no pricey airport transfers, city centre arrivals and children 11 years of age and under travel free.More news:  Sunwing ready to launch Mazatlán-Quebec City direct this winterOther benefits of a Eurail Pass include free access to VIP lounges in the main train stations of Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden.Global Passes are a big seller from Canada, amounting to half of Eurail’s sales from this market. Global Passes give visitors the flexibility to explore up to 28 European countries at their own pace.The Eurail Select and One Country Passes, meanwhile, provide a number of itinerary options by rail and sea for guests wanting to experience between one and four participating Eurail countries.Eurail has 22 One Country Passes. Passes for Spain and Portugal showed a lot of growth in 2016, says Mattos. Scandinavia was up too. All were seen as ‘safe haven’ destinations by travellers determined to head to Europe last year.A new Eurail France Pass is selling well, notes Mattos. As a destination France had a rockier year than most but there’s no denying the country’s long-term allure. As Mattos says with a smile, “they have the Eiffel Tower.” Eurail’s Italy Switzerland Pass, also new, is selling very well too. Eurail is now including Switzerland’s much-loved Glacier Express in its Passes.More news:  Sunwing to further boost Mazatlán service with new flights from OttawaEurail has also bumped up the maximum age for its Eurail Youth Pass, to 27 years old and younger, so more travellers can take advantage of Youth Pass discounts worth 35% off standard adult prices. Almost 4 in 10 (39%) of Canadians travelling with Eurail are purchasing Youth Passes, says Mattos. Some 57% buy adult passes and 4% are booking Eurail Child Passes, which are free for young travellers ages 4 to 11. Kids under the age of 4 on their first day of travel ride free as well and don’t need a pass.Travelling via Eurail isn’t just about transportation, says Mattos. “It’s a way of discovering Europe.” Eurail is looking to expand its value proposition for travellers with special deals like its exclusive 20 euro discount off pre-booked entrance tickets to Disneyland Paris, for all Eurail Pass holders.For travel agents, Eurail offers discounted fares (up to 75% off). It’s also looking at a specialist program for the retail trade. “We’re working on it,” says Mattos. For product information see eurail.com or one of Eurail’s GSAs including Rail Europe at raileurope.ca. Posted by Thursday, March 16, 2017 << Previous PostNext Post >> Travelweek Group center_img Canadian market picking up steam for Eurail; 2 weeks left for Extra Days deal Share Tags: Britain & Europe, Eurail, Rail Europelast_img read more

Swedish cable operator Com Hem has unveiled plans

first_imgSwedish cable operator Com Hem has unveiled plans to raise about SEK5.5 billion (€610 million) through an IPO on the Stockholm stock exchange.Com Hem said the goal of the offering is to reduce the company’s debt levels and provide additional financial flexibility. The company aims to reduce its net leverage to about 4.15 times underlying EBITDA as of June 30, with a target of getting the ration down to between 3.5 and 4 times EBITDA in the medium term.Com Hem’s announcement follows a Bloomberg report last week that it was in advanced stages of planning an IPO. The company was first reported to be in talks with its owner, London-based private-equity firm BC Partners, about a possible listing back in January.The operator has highlighted its strong fundamentals, with a 39% share of Swedish homes connected to its network and a 61% share of digital TV subscribers within its footprint. It is also the number one broadband provider in its footprint with a  44% share and the number two broadband provider nationally. The company posted net sales of SEK4.448 billion last year with underlying EBITDA of SEK2.2 billion.The share issue will primarily consist of a new ordinary shares issue, although BC Partners may sell some of the shares in Com Hem held by its local holding company NorCell.JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley and Nordea are acting as joint global coordinators and joint bookrunners, while Carnegie is acting as a joint bookrunner and Rothschild is financial advisor.““We have in the past few years made significant investments in the network, new products and the operations, which will enable us to fully capture the potential of this company,” said Com Hem CEO Anders Nilsson.“Com Hem has the fastest broadband offering in 80 percent of our cable footprint, last year we launched the leading digital TV offering with TiVo in Sweden and we have made an accelerated entry into the B2B segment through the acquisition of Phonera Företag this year.”Nikos Stathopoulos, managing partner at BC Partners said: “Becoming a public company is a natural next step for Com Hem as it will broaden its shareholder base, provide financial flexibility by reducing leverage and enhance the company’s growth prospects. We will continue to support Com Hem, its strong management team and staff and we welcome new shareholders to take part in the future development of Com Hem.”last_img read more

Omar Javaid Interactive TV technology provider Rov

first_imgOmar JavaidInteractive TV technology provider Rovi has named Omar Javaid as senior vice-president of discovery. As head of the new discovery business group, Javaid, who was previously vice president and general manager, commercial mobility at Hewlett-Packard, will be responsible for Rovi’s discovery product offerings from concept to customer delivery and will oversee aspects of the group’s activity including engineering, architecture, user experience, product lifecycle management, programme management and product marketing, according to Rovi.“With extensive experience in managing large scale, cloud infrastructure initiatives, Omar will bring industry best practices and proven approaches to help expedite our transition to Internet Protocol-based solutions for multiscreen guidance and discovery,” said John Burke, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Rovi.last_img

Thats the latest iteration of the CTCiChip cre

first_img That’s the latest iteration of the CTC-iChip , created by a team of researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School led by Mehmet Toner. The “chip” is about two inches long, one inch wide, and paper thin. It’s designed to capture what are known as circulating tumor cells (CTCs) to give doctors a way to diagnose and track cancer that is less invasive, cheaper, and more informative than a biopsy. CTCs are shed into the bloodstream by tumors, and their isolation and analysis could lead to early detection of invasive cancers—which is important, because the earlier a patient is diagnosed, the better his or her chances of survival—and help doctors develop better and more personalized treatment regimens. The problem is that these things are rare, typically just 1 to 10 CTCs per billion blood cells. Isolating them has proven difficult over the years. The new CTC-iChip combines multiple technologies like size separation (which takes advantage of the fact that CTCs are larger and stiffer than blood cells) and magnetic-tag separation (which involves tagging white blood cells with magnetic beads so they can be discarded using a magnetic field after the sample is run) to isolate the individual CTCs. Isolating the individual CTCs this way allows scientists to perform single-cell genomic analysis. And that’s important. Consider a cancer biopsy. You can look at the sample and see that the cells are different from one another, yet the way researchers further analyze the sample is by grinding up the tissue and examining the smearing of all the genetic signatures of the different individual cells. This provides you with a rough average of the genetics of all the cells in the sample, but it masks critical differences. For example, the genetics of the metastatic cells are quite different from the cells that won’t spread the disease; with conventional methods of analysis you can’t see that. So you won’t be able to understand what makes the cancer go from a dangerous to a deadly state. By employing single-cell analysis that’s facilitated by this microfluidic chip, physicians can develop a better understanding of the disease, which could lead to more effective personalized treatments. Pretty cool. But it doesn’t stop there. Another new and particularly interesting effort in the area of microfluidics is a play on the well-known system-on-a-chip (SoC) technology from the world of computers. It can be described as human-organs-on-a-chip and could eventually become an invaluable tool that leads to a more efficient drug-discovery process. The idea is not to make replacement organs for transplant, but to replicate enough of an organ’s functions to make the chips useful in testing substances for toxic and therapeutic effects. That has immediate applicability, because a major part of the preclinical phase of drug development involves assessing safety and biological activity in the laboratory—especially in animal studies. (It’s difficult to access reliable figures, but it’s safe to say that billions of dollars a year is spent on animal tests.) The problem with these animal models—without even touching on the various potential ethical issues involved—is that, although they have historically been one of the most trusted tools in drug development, they are not actually all that predictive of the human situation. Not only do animal models fail to identify numerous drugs that are toxic to humans, they also derail drugs that would have been efficacious. Of course this makes sense. Different animals evolved differently and have different biologies. Nevertheless, we continue to rely on expensive, time-consuming, and unreliable animal models in the drug-development process because they’re the best we have. But thanks to advancements in microfluidic technologies, human organs on chips could be a better way. The breakthrough in this area came in mid-2010, when researchers from the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard announced they had successfully developed a lung-on-a-chip. The device, which is about the size of a rubber eraser and is made using human lung and blood-vessel cells, actually mimics a living, breathing human lung. It’s essentially a porous membrane with human cells from the lung’s air sac on one side and human capillary blood vessel cells on the other side. There’s air flowing through the channel on the lung side and a medium (like blood) with human blood cells in it flowing through the channel on the capillary side. The whole thing stretches and relaxes like our lungs do when we breathe. And it does a good job replicating the natural responses of living lungs to various stimuli. Just as the living lung-blood interface recognizes invaders such as inhaled bacteria or toxins and activates an immune response, so too does lung-on-a-chip. The researchers tested this by introducing E. coli bacteria into the air channel on the lung side of the device while concurrently adding white blood cells to the channel on the blood vessel side. The lung cells detected the bacteria and, through the porous membrane, activated the blood vessel cells, which in turn triggered an immune response that ultimately caused the white blood cells to move to the air chamber and destroy the bacteria. Lung-on-a-chip was just the beginning. The Wyss Institute also has kidney-on-a-chip, bone-marrow-on-a-chip, and gut-on-a-chip—a silicon polymer device about the size of a flash memory stick that mimics complex 3D features of the human intestine. All could prove to be valuable diagnostic tools in the development of safe and effective new therapeutics. We’re on the cusp of a revolution in life-science research. This revolution promises to bring with it better ways to detect cancer and other diseases, as well as a more efficient drug-discovery process. And it promises these benefits on the cheap—thanks in large part to what’s known as microfluidics. Let’s back up for a moment… back to December 29, 1959. It was then that physicist Richard Feynman gave his now-famous lecture titled There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom, during which he essentially anticipated what we now call nanotechnology. Feynman actually never mentioned the word “nanotechnology” in his talk—and it wasn’t until the 1980s that nanotech researchers began regularly citing his lecture—but what he did do at that time was posit the amazing possibilities afforded by miniaturization, including “miniaturizing the computer.” He foresaw that the clunky “computing machines” of his day would be infinitely more useful if they could be shrunk. At the time of Feynman’s talk, although transistors were beginning to replace vacuum tubes, computers were still huge and grossly inefficient. The IBM Stretch computer of 1959 managed to fit a mere 150,000 transistors into its 33-foot length. Meanwhile, Feynman was talking about wires “that should be 10 or 100 atoms in diameter” and circuits that “should be a few thousand angstroms across.” (One thousand angstroms is equal to 100 nanometers.) By 2011, Intel was mass producing processors with 32-nanometer technology that contained 2.6 billion transistors. Intel’s Xeon server chip that’s due to be released this year has 4.31 billion transistors. And consider that one of today’s smartphones has significantly more computing power than all of NASA circa 1969, when it sent Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the moon. While it’s true that we don’t yet have the capabilities Feynman envisioned—of building “a billion tiny factories, models of each other, which are manufacturing simultaneously” from the bottom up, atom by atom—his miniaturization-of-computers idea was clearly spot on. So what if we applied his approach to a different area of scientific study… say biology? After all, much of biology today is similar to where electronics was yesterday—except instead of vacuum tubes and cable wires, you have arrays of test tubes and hoses. What if all that “plumbing” used to study biological systems could be shrunk—would we reap the same benefits as we did in electronics? Turns out the answer is yes. And that’s where microfluidics comes in. Microfluidics is the science of fluid dynamics on the micro scale (i.e., millionths of a meter). We’ll spare you the details of the fluid mechanics at this scale—where things like laminar flow, diffusion, capillary effects, and surface tension dominate—and boil things down to one simple idea: Microfluidics and its application is all about conducting biological experiments and tests with really small plumbing. How small is the plumbing we’re talking about? The channels through which the fluids travel in the devices today are roughly the width of a human hair, and sometimes smaller. If you think you’re not already acquainted with the world of microfluidics, think again. Two very recognizable examples of microfluidic technologies are the glucometer to measure blood sugar levels and pregnancy tests. Basically, we’re talking about precisely manipulating fluids—to do things like blood screening for diseases and single-cell genomic analysis—using a microscale device built with technologies that were first developed by the semiconductor industry, and were later expanded into fluidics due to the benefits that accrue from shrinking things. For starters, miniaturization means lower costs, since researchers require much smaller volumes of samples and reagents to conduct experiments and run tests. There’s also the potential for running multiple experiments in parallel and cutting down on the number of steps required to run them. But microfluidics technologies also make novel tasks possible, like giving us the ability to interact with individual cells. Let’s look at another example to explain further. Lung-on-a-chip (top) and Gut-on-a-chip (bottom) The Wyss team’s ultimate goal is to build 10 different human-organs-on-chips and link them together on an automated instrument to mimic whole-body physiology. This could eventually lead to personalized chips that could predict a specific individual’s drug response. The bottom line: In theory, since these microfluidic human-organs-on-chips use human cells and mimic both the mechanics and biology of the organs they represent, they would be more predictive than animal models, so drug failure rates would be lower. Modeling with these chips would cut costs and reduce the time involved in the drug-discovery process. It’s still too early to tell how successful this field of research will be… but the prospects are exciting. Microfluidic technologies for many applications like this are still relatively early stage, but the above examples demonstrate how microfluidics should play an increasingly important role in disease detection and could ultimately disrupt the drug-discovery process for the better. This kind of game-changing technology is what we at Casey Extraordinary Technology specialize in finding and investing in. From cutting-edge biotech drug companies and molecular-diagnostic innovators to the firms that created the 3D printing industry and those that are building the smart grid, the track record of our investment recommendations stands out among all our competitors and truly speaks for itself, with an average gain per closed position during 2013 and 2014 of 66%. To become part of this track record of success, simply sign up for a 90-day, risk-free trial of Casey Extraordinary Technology.last_img read more

Which billiondollar unicorn startups will go ex

first_img Which billion-dollar ‘unicorn’ startups will go extinct? Will Yemen become Saudi Arabia’s ‘Vietnam’? Larry Summers: The US may just have lost its role as underwriter of the global economic system. Is coal dying? Or can India make up for falling Chinese coal demand? Are you a terrorist? No? That’s exactly what a terrorist would say… Governments have long used “the war on terrorism” as a justification for stealing our freedoms. Now the French government is using terrorism as an excuse to impose capital controls. Terrorists like to use cash, you see. So French citizens who make cash payments exceeding €1,000, or withdraw more than €10,000 in a month, will have to answer to the money laundering authorities. Think this can’t happen in the US? Think again. A series of transactions that exceed $5,000 could get you reported for “suspicious activity,” warns Jeff Thomas in Doug Casey’s International Man. The trend toward a cashless society is clear. Soon, using any cash at all will arouse suspicion. Of course this has little to do with terrorism. Digital currency is easier to track, making it easier for a government to squeeze every last tax dollar out of its citizens. Digital currency is also more convenient for the government to steal right out of your bank account when the next financial crisis hits… just like the government of Cyprus did in 2013. When Will Brazil Hit Rock Bottom? Things are going from bad to worse in Brazil. Investors were hoping that its oil industry could blunt the pain of the collapse of its credit-fuelled boom. But cheap oil has crushed that dream. The stats are really ugly. Brazil’s currency has lost 40% of its value since early 2014, and its central bank has given up defending it. Consumer and business confidence are in the toilet. Inflation is running at 8%. Interest rates and taxes are rising. Utility and transportation tariffs are soaring. And the labor market is deteriorating. Not surprisingly, Brazil is facing a deep recession this year. It also must deal with the murky politics of Petrobras, which could lead to the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff. The scandal also threatens to put a stop to virtually all of the country’s civil construction projects. Like any country in crisis, Brazil is on our radar. But Casey Report Editor Dan Steinhart doesn’t like what he sees yet. The problem: unrepentant Marxists are still in power there. Gold: A Barometer of Financial Fear Don’t get distracted by misleading headlines about “Peak Gold.” Global gold production has not peaked and we’re not going to run out of gold, says Louis James, our chief Metals & Mining strategist. Louis adds that there’s no case for Peak Gold because, “[T]he supply of pure gold in easily tradable forms in private and public hands all around the world dwarfs mine supply almost to insignificance.” It’s true that high-grade discoveries are becoming rarer. But technology will always find ways of getting stuff out of the ground more cheaply, or recycling it more efficiently. The real limiting factor to the supply of gold is political and economic instability in many of the places where gold is found in the ground. With the Fed painted into a corner and respected analysts talking about a multi-decade global depression, gold bulls are perking up. The price of gold is really nothing more and nothing less than a barometer of financial fear. Is a College Degree Worth It? Going to college used to be a no-brainer. Not anymore, due to the incessant rise in college costs. But Dennis Miller, editor of Miller’s Money Forever, explains that college can still be a worthwhile investment… IF (and that’s a big ‘if’) you pay for it the right way. Blips and Bogeys The world’s second largest gold reserves remain untapped in the Philippines. Could that change? Oil didn’t fall off a cliff in response to the ‘tentative’ Iran nuclear deal. Instead, it gained 3% after Saudi Arabia raised Asian oil prices. The case for gold on the basis of currency fundamentals. A neat explanation on why less energy equates to lower GDP. Why Europe hates American tech companies Turkey is turning into a basket case. A rare interview with Barrick chairman. Tesla pushes its luck on Twitter. Ukraine’s economy has already fallen 15% this year. Just who is going to pay for that? Is Greece preparing to reintroduce the drachma? Amazon takes on Yelp and Angie’s List as it expands into home services. NSA spying to cost US IT companies $47 billion in the next 3 years. Google-backed Bitcoin exchange is shutting down… just as high frequency traders are starting to trade bitcoin. Artists install Edward Snowden statue in Brooklyn park. NYC immediately covers it up.last_img read more

Statements submitted to MPs have provided further

first_imgStatements submitted to MPs have provided further evidence of widespread dishonesty among healthcare professionals who carry out disability benefit assessments, but their inquiry has had to be abandoned because of the prime minister’s decision to call a general election.Despite its inquiry into the personal independence payment (PIP) assessment process having to be scrapped, the Commons work and pensions select committee has published written evidence it has received from PIP claimants and disability organisations.The committee held an urgent evidence session about the assessment process in March, a hearing partly triggered by a Disability News Service (DNS) investigation, before seeking further written evidence.DNS had provided the committee with substantial evidence of widespread dishonesty among PIP assessors in the reports they prepare for government decision-makers.The DNS investigation revealed that assessors working for the outsourcing companies Capita and Atos – most of them nurses – had repeatedly lied, ignored written evidence and dishonestly reported the results of physical examinations.DNS has now collected nearly 200 examples of cases in which PIP claimants have said that healthcare professionals working for Capita and Atos produced dishonest assessment reports.DWP has consistently claimed that there is no dishonesty at all among its outsourced healthcare assessors.Inclusion London, the pan-London disabled people’s organisation, provided the most detailed written evidence of all the individuals and groups that contributed to the committee’s inquiry.It said in its evidence: “Again and again Disabled people are reporting that assessors have ignored written and verbal evidence and that reports do not reflect what occurred in the assessment.”Inclusion London quoted widely from evidence compiled by DNS, and concluded: “The extent to which false information is included in assessment reports cannot be attributed to one or two negligent assessors but indicates systemic failings with the current PIP assessment process.”It called for all assessments to be recorded, and for “a clear and accessible system for Disabled people to file complaints against assessors with an independent body and for complaint statistics to be made public”.It also called for a new PIP assessment, based on the social model of disability and created in co-production with disabled people, which focuses on “barriers and the impact of impairment on daily life rather than functionality”.Other written evidence submitted to the committee appears to confirm the conclusions of the DNS investigation.Among those who responded to a survey by Disability Rights UK (DR UK) was a healthcare professional with a first-class degree in physiotherapy.They said they had been “shocked by the level of errors, inaccuracies, omissions and, quite possibly, lies” in the assessment report compiled for their PIP claim, according to DR UK’s evidence to the committee.The respondent concluded that “the musculoskeletal assessment conducted was appalling and could not have provided sufficient information upon which a decision regarding my physical capabilities to carry out work for any period of time could be made.“Lies were also told about the content of the musculoskeletal assessment – data was recorded for tests which were not conducted.”Another DR UK survey respondent described how PIP decisions were often overturned on appeal due to “assessors making inaccurate statements, assessors making false statements, assessors incorrectly interpreting things the claimant said or did”.In its evidence to the committee, the mental health charity Rethink said that respondents to its own survey on PIP “felt that there was a discrepancy between what was discussed at the assessment and the content of the subsequent written report.“We received several examples of PIP applicants claiming that assessors had deliberately misinterpreted them and in… some cases included complete fabrications in their reports.”But the evidence compiled by the committee may now end up being discarded because the decision by Theresa May to call a general election on 8 June means that parliament was dissolved this week, leading to some committee inquiries having to be abandoned.Mark Lucas, a PIP claimant who has spoken out repeatedly about the “shockingly poor and dishonest” assessment system, and has given evidence to an inquiry into PIP assessments set up by Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said the decision to call an election was “another set back at the end of many set backs”.He said: “Clearly the health professionals have been dishonest and the government has gone to great lengths to ensure the PIP scam is kept quiet for as long as possible.“Everyone knows what has gone on is wrong but only few have voiced their concerns.“I am sure if we continue to have the same government the rights of persons with disabilities will be further abused.”A spokeswoman for the committee said the PIP investigation was “one of the inquiries that fell with the announcement of the election”.When the committee is reformed in the new parliament – probably in September – it could choose to relaunch the inquiry, but will be under no obligation to do so, but if it does it could choose to “keep and use the evidence they have now”, she said.last_img read more

The Generation Game

first_imgFalmouth StakesNewmarketTIME: 2.40pm, C4 and RUKLIGHTING UP NEWMARKETIt’s a shame that just the four runners go to post for the featured Etihad Airways Falmouth Stakes Group 1 this afternoon and staggering that no owner in the country wanted the £4,842 for finishing fifth !!It still should be a decent race and it’s the chance for Sky Lantern to show not only she’s the best of her generation but also that her generation are above average.She’s officially the best horse in the race with a BHA rating of 119 and has been particularly impressive in winning the 1000 Guineas and most recently the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot where she quickened inside the final furlong to beat outsider Kenhope into second and Irish 1000 Guineas winner Just The Judge into third.Further down the field, in eighth, was another of today’s rivals, Purr Along, who surely has no chances on turning that form around.Biggest danger is likely to come from Elusive Kate who ran well in fourth behind Declaration Of War in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot. That was on her belated reappearance and she is entitled to have come on for that run.French raider Giofra is a real globe trotter but I’ve the feeling the ground might well be a little quick for her today. It was soft when she won this last year.In summary Sky Lantern. I know she’s short but it’s one of those that looks value at current odds and I think she will prove herself and her generation special today.STAR FORECAST(stake between 0.5 and 10 points)10 point win SKY LANTERN (2.40 Newmarket)(-6 points Thursday)GETTING HOTTERBritain has already been basking in sunshine for over a week but this weekend could bring the hottest day of the year so far.Temperatures on Friday are expected to reach 27C (80.6F) in some places but it is Saturday that looks like the scorcher.Forecasters say 32C (89.6F) is possible in southeast England.In July 2006 Wisley, Surrey, saw the mercury rise to 36.5C (97.7F) after a fortnight-long hot spell.The Met Office has said there is a 70% probability of heatwave conditions between 12pm on Friday and 8pm on Sunday.last_img read more

Google May Have Violated Wiretap Laws

first_imgTechnology Ray Hennessey 3 min read –shares Guest Writer Google May Have Violated Wiretap Laws Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Image credit: AFP Register Now »center_img In a victory for online privacy advocates but a blow to advertisers, a federal judge in California has ruled Google may have violated wiretapping laws by scanning and reviewing users’ Gmails.Google has long scanned Gmail messages to then target advertising to its users. The company has argued the practice is perfectly within the confines of both federal and state eavesdropping laws because Gmail users give up their privacy as part of Gmail’s Terms of Service contract.U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh disagreed, saying those Terms of Service “did not explicitly notify Plaintiffs that Google would intercept users’ emails for the purposes of creating user profiles or providing targeted advertising.”What’s more, even if Gmail account holders consented to having their emails searched, the people with whom those users are communicating didn’t. Google has claimed that users of, say, Microsoft’s Outlook, should know that Google will view their mail when sent to a Gmail account.Related: Google Looking Beyond ‘Cookies’ to Track People OnlineKoh was unconvinced, saying she “cannot conclude that any party — Gmail users or non-Gmail users — has consented to Google’s reading of email for the purposes of creating user profiles or providing targeted advertising.”The ruling, part of a proposed class action against Google, is a big win for privacy advocates, who have complained that technology companies have too much access to personal information and are not overt enough in explaining how customer information and data are used.The chorus for more protections has only gotten louder since it was revealed that companies like Google shared information with the U.S. government as the National Security Agency spied on American emails, texts and phone calls.Still, companies have long found that there is a potentially high value proposition for advertisers in targeting marketing toward users based on their interests. Google, for instance, has long tied advertising to search results from users. Gmail, it argues, is an extension of that.But Google has found itself more and more in the crosshairs of the privacy-protection crowd. Earlier this month, the company found out its capture of data over open Wi-Fi routers also could violate federal wiretapping laws. Google captured data through cars sent throughout the company to record images for its Google Street View maps. It has said it did so to improve its location-services features, but broader content was captured by the cars.Google is not alone. In theory, Judge Koh’s ruling could affect other companies that mine free email for information to match with advertisers. Yahoo mail, for instance, has a Terms of Service that allows for broader data capture.Court: Facebook Likes Are Protected Speech Next Article September 27, 2013 Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Editor-at-Large Add to Queuelast_img read more

Uber Teams Up With Spotify So Passengers Can Play Backseat DJs

first_imgPartnerships Uber Teams Up With Spotify So Passengers Can Play ‘Backseat DJs’ Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Add to Queue Laura Entis Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Guest Writer November 17, 2014center_img It’s official: After rumblings on Friday that Uber was teaming up with Spotify, the ridesharing service officially announced the partnership this morning in a blog post.“We’ve joined forces with Spotify, a world leader in streaming music, to enable you to remotely control the music that plays through your Uber’s speakers,” the company’s senior product manager wrote. “Whether you’re starting the night with your pre-party mix or unwinding with a chill playlist on your way home, the choice is now yours with Uber.”Related: Lyft Says Former COO Took Confidential Files With Him to UberTo play “backseat DJ,” you first need to connect your Spotify account with your Uber profile; when you request a ride, a music bar will appear at the bottom of the Uber app and you can select a playlist from your Spotify account while you wait for your car to show (although this only works if you get a music-enabled car, a detail that’s apparently stressing out Uber drivers with older vehicles who fear they’ll be penalized for not offering the service).Get in the car, and viola – your soundtrack will automatically start playing.For both companies, the partnership makes sense. On Uber’s part, it’s a way to differentiate itself from archrival Lyft, while Spotify (currently caught up in a tiff of its own with…Taylor Swift) gets increased exposure and presumably, new customers.The feature is slated to launch this Friday in 10 major cities, including London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, New York, San Francisco and Sydney with additional rollouts coming in the next few weeks. Related: Uber, Lyft Find Ally in New York’s Attorney General Next Article Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. –shares 2 min read Register Now »last_img read more

How is Artificial Intelligence Improving Advertising in 2019

first_imgHow is Artificial Intelligence Improving Advertising in 2019 Sebastien FilionApril 30, 2019, 4:00 pmApril 30, 2019 ad exchange platformsAdvertisingArtificial IntelligenceMarketing Technology Blogprogrammatic advertising Previous ArticleTechBytes with Chemi Katz, Co-Founder and CEO, NamogooNext ArticleSurefire Signs Your Revenue Team Is Disconnected from the Buyer Journey Artificial Intelligence (AI) is quickly becoming a mainstay in numerous industries across the world, enabling more efficient manufacturing, safer transportation, and faster problem-solving and data processing. While these practical applications are actively seen almost daily, AI is also being applied in ways we don’t see at first glance, namely in the world of advertising.How is AI Assisting Full-Scale Advertising CampaignsAs AI evolves and improves, it will provide numerous benefits for advertisers, publishers, marketers, and especially so in programmatic advertising. With programmatic advertising today, Artificial Intelligence is used to develop profiles of online and in-app viewers, which are then used to tailor appropriate, relevant ads for each unique user. This allows advertisers to target large scale audiences more effectively and publishers to offer ad experiences tailored to their editorial content without having to blanket entire sets of websites in the hopes that the right viewers will visit.AI is also assisting full-scale campaigns, analyzing entire datasets against KPIs to determine what is working and what needs to be changed. While not particularly innovative in the wider industry context AI’s entry here provides valuable support for advertisers, publishers, and marketers by significantly reducing the capacity for human error, which is always a possibility when comparing and contrasting any amount of performance data.Read More: Why Measurement is the Secret to Agency SuccessIs AI actually solving real digital advertising problems?First, by expanding on the development of audience profiles Artificial Intelligence systems are being used to evaluate and identify the most eye-catching and relevant advertisement to use for any online individual. This process, often known as Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO), begins with the system identifying a unique user and their specific profile. With this information, the system can then look through any number of creative items in a campaign and based on the user’s profile, select the creative that will work best for them.For example, if a campaign is running hundreds of various images to drive traffic, it will have numerous color combinations. If the campaign begins to see a trend of stronger positive response to creative assets featuring a red call-to-action than a blue or a green, the DCO system will select and display the pieces of creative which match that profile. The purpose here being to present viewers with an advertisement similar in characteristics to ones they’ve connected with in past.Read More: Demystifying Predictive AnalyticsAI in programmatic digital advertisingMoving forward, Artificial Intelligence is becoming an ever more valuable tool in programmatic digital advertising through the process of Supply Path Optimization (SPO). Through this process, marketers can maximize every advertising dollar. SPO selects each possible avenue to deliver an advertisement to a given website or application, evaluates and compares the options offered by each ad publisher, and makes a choice that gives the buyer the best bang for their buck.If an advertiser wants to run an ad on a specific site, this advertiser should optimize that ad at different times, for different prices, to different audiences. Instead of choosing randomly or working through each possibility manually, an AI system can run through the possibilities quickly and determine the best choice for each ad.Looking ahead to what is next for artificial intelligence and its application in advertising, ad exchange platforms are at the forefront of development. On these exchanges where multiple publishers put forth potential avenues for an advertiser to get in front of an audience, the best choice comes down to the best price to performance ratio of any given option.Using an AI system, a company can build a pool of information based on previous sales for a certain target site or app, at a specific time, for any given audience – in this pool of information would be the most recent prices any given ad has sold for. With this information at hand, predicting the price an advertising space will sell for becomes a possibility, providing a valuable competitive edge for specific publishers. Further, this could create a more competitive marketplace in the future as prices are predicted earlier and more accurately, giving a window to price slightly above or below the trend.While these are only a few ways Artificial Intelligence is moving in to and affecting the world of digital advertising, especially as programmatic advertising becomes a primary driver in the industry, one thing is quickly becoming clear; AI is only going to become more important to effective advertising.Read More: Why Senior Business Leaders Should Care About CX Datalast_img read more

Particledepleted diesel exhaust may worsen allergyinduced lung impairment

first_img“The take-home message,” said Dr. Carlsten, “is that technologies that remove particulate matter from diesel exhaust cannot be simply assumed to be beneficial to health, especially in susceptible populations.”Source: http://www.thoracic.org/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Apr 12 2019Air pollution from diesel engines may worsen allergy-induced lung impairment more when tiny particles are filtered from the exhaust than when they are not, according to new research published online in the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.This surprising result may be due to the fact that some particle-depletion technologies, including the one used by the researchers, increase the amount of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in the exhaust. NO2, which is subject to national air quality standards, has been shown to reduce lung function and may be a cause of asthma in children.In “Particle Depletion Does Not Remediate Acute Effects of Traffic-Related Air Pollution and Allergen,” Denise J. Wooding, MSc, and co-authors report on a randomized, controlled study of 14 non-smoking adults who were sensitive to at least one of three common allergens.”We previously demonstrated that diesel exhaust augmented allergic responses as well as airflow declines in those genetically susceptible, but we wondered if removing particles from the exhaust would lessen these effects,” said senior study author Chris Carlsten, MD, MPH, professor, head of respiratory medicine and Canada Research Chair in Occupational and Environmental Lung Disease at the University of British Columbia.In this cross-over study, all 14 participants at various times were exposed in a laboratory to air with just the allergen, the allergen plus diesel exhaust and the allergen plus filtered diesel exhaust. They all also breathed air with no diesel exhaust or allergen, which served as the control.Related StoriesFood allergy caused by absence of beneficial bacteria in the gutComprehensive gene activity database could significantly reduce animal useNovel method can help clinicians identify individuals most in need of PrEPAfter each exposure, the participants underwent a commonly used test called methacholine challenge to determine how a patient responds to an inhaled allergen. Neither they nor those conducting the study were aware of which exposure they had undergone before being tested.The researchers also measured numbers of white blood cells, which marshal the body’s immune response but can “overreact” to allergens, causing breathing problems.The study found: The particle-depleted diesel exhaust produced by HEPA filtration and electrostatic precipitation generated higher NO2 levels than unfiltered diesel exhaust. Exposure to filtered diesel exhaust and allergen impaired the amount of air participants could forcibly exhale in one second (FEV1) more than allergen alone and more than unfiltered diesel exhaust and allergen. Increasing levels of white blood cells were associated with declining FEV1 scores, suggesting that white blood cells “play a meaningful role in reducing lung function in the context of these exposures.” The effects of filtered diesel exhaust on lung function and on white blood cells were more pronounced in those participants who were genetically susceptible to oxidative stress, which occurs when there is an imbalance of free radicals and antioxidants in the body.last_img read more

Collagen powder found to be effective in wound closure

first_imgDuring normal wound healing, collagen acts as a scaffold for cellular entry and growth in the wound bed and encourages the deposition of new collagen. While collagen has been used as a wound healing adjuvant, a good comparison to the standard of wound care has been lacking.”Adam Friedman, MD, interim chair of the Department of Dermatology, GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences, author on the study Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Jul 8 2019Collagen powder is just as effective in managing skin biopsy wounds as primary closure with non-absorbable sutures, according to a first-of-its-kind study published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology by a team of physician researchers at the George Washington University.The team investigated the efficacy of topical collagen powder compared to primary closure on the rate and quality of full-thickness wound healing through histopathological analysis of healing and comparison of symptoms and early cosmetic outcomes.Collagen is best known as an essential structural component of several organs, importantly the skin, but it also plays a pivotal role as a signaling molecule in the regulation of all phases of wound healing. Therefore, externally applied, collagen powder has significant potential for wound healing and care due to its ability to stop bleeding, to recruit immune and skin cells central to wound healing, as well as stimulate new blood vessel formation, and can be left in wounds without causing irritation or facilitating bacterial growth. Related StoriesFibrinogen a key player in health and disease, says new studyChronic inflammation removes motivation by reducing dopamine in the brainArmy research may help improve cancer treatments and treat combat woundsFriedman’s team administered two punch biopsies to eight volunteers and treated one wound with a daily topical collagen powder and the other with primary closure. Wounds were biopsied at four weeks for analysis and subjects were asked to rate the itch, pain, and treatment preferences throughout the process.The researchers found that six out of eight collagen-treated wounds were completely healed after four weeks after initial wounding and all wounds were completely healed eight weeks after the second biopsy. Patients reported similar pain and itch for both primary closure and collagen, with most attributing the itch to the adhesive dressings rather than the wound itself. The team concluded that based on these findings, wounds treated with collagen powder healed at least as well as those treated with primary closure and that the powder can be applied safely for at least four weeks.”Given the cost and time to place and remove sutures and the potential reimbursement for collagen, using topical collagen powder for punch biopsy wounds may be easier on the patient, not requiring an additional visit for suture removal and yielding an equivalent or possibly better wound healing outcome,” Friedman said. “Moving forward we need to further examine the parameters of collagen use on wounds, including duration of therapy and wound sizes.” Source:George Washington Universitylast_img read more

Manure could heat your home

Farm manure could be a viable source of renewable energy to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions that cause global warming. Researchers at the University of Waterloo are developing technology to produce renewable natural gas from manure so it can be added to the existing energy supply system for heating homes and powering industries. That would eliminate particularly harmful gases released by naturally decomposing manure when it is spread on farm fields as fertilizer and partially replace fossil natural gas, a significant contributor to global warming.”There are multiple ways we can benefit from this single approach,” said David Simakov, a professor of chemical engineering at Waterloo. “The potential is huge.”Simakov said the technology could be viable with several kinds of manure, particularly cow and pig manure, as well as at landfill sites.In addition to being used by industries and in homes, renewable natural gas could replace diesel fuel for trucks in the transportation sector, a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.To test the concept, researchers built a computer model of an actual 2,000-head dairy farm in Ontario that collects manure and converts it into biogas in anaerobic digesters. Some of that biogas is already used to produce electricity by burning it in generators, reducing the environmental impact of manure while also yielding about 30 to 40 percent of its energy potential.Researchers want to take those benefits a significant step further by upgrading, or converting, biogas from manure into renewable natural gas. That would involve mixing it with hydrogen, then running it through a catalytic converter. A chemical reaction in the converter would produce methane from carbon dioxide in the biogas.Known as methanation, the process would require electricity to produce hydrogen, but that power could be generated on-site by renewable wind or solar systems, or taken from the electrical grid at times of low demand. The net result would be renewable natural gas that yields almost all of manure’s energy potential and also efficiently stores electricity, but has only a fraction of the greenhouse gas impact of manure used as fertilizer.”This is how we can make the transition from fossil-based energy to renewable energy using existing infrastructure, which is a tremendous advantage,” said Simakov, who collaborates with fellow chemical engineering professor Michael Fowler.The modelling study showed that a $5-million investment in a methanation system at the Ontario farm would, with government price subsidies for renewable natural gas, have about a five-year payback period.A paper on modelling of a renewable natural gas generation facility at the Ontario farm, which also involved a post-doctoral researcher and several Waterloo students, was recently published in the International Journal of Energy Research. Provided by University of Waterloo Credit: CC0 Public Domain Cow power could generate electricity for millions Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Manure could heat your home (2018, March 8) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-03-manure-home.html read more

Smart selfpowered knee implants could reduce number of knee replacement surgeries

first_img Knee replacement surgery is the most common joint replacement procedure, with the number of surgeries increasing every year. Many of those surgeries are done to replace an older implant or one that has worn out. Increasingly, this surgery is being performed for younger, more active patients who are faced with a dilemma. When they undergo the surgery, they are expected to remain physically active for their overall health, but that activity can also wear down the new implant. Often, doctors don’t know if patients are overexerting themselves until they begin to develop symptoms. By that point, the damage to the implant has already been done. For a young patient, going through knee replacement surgery every five or 10 years is a daunting task, but finding the perfect balance of activity levels to maintain the integrity of the implant has been equally daunting.Researchers decided it was time to create smarter knee implants that could monitor changes in activity as they happened. Assistant Professor Sherry Towfighian from Binghamton University served as the lead principal investigator on the study, which has been supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).”We are working on a knee implant that has built-in sensors that can monitor how much pressure is being put on the implant so doctors can have a clearer understanding of how much activity is negatively affecting the implant,” said Towfighian.The sensors allow doctors to tell patients when a certain movement has become too much for the implant so patients can quickly adjust and avoid further damage to the implant. It helps them find the sweet spot of activity for each particular patient. Smart knee implants may soon be a reality thanks to research conducted by a team including faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York. They used triboelectric energy, a type of energy that is collected from friction. Once someone walks, the friction of the micro-surfaces coming into contact with each other can be used to power the load sensors.Associate Professor Emre Salman from Stony Brook University designed the circuit and determined that it would need 4.6 microwatts. The preliminary testing showed the average person’s walk will produce six microwatts of power, more than enough to power the sensors. This part of the research was complemented by Assistant Professor Ryan Willing from the University of Western Ontario, who worked on the implant design and the package of the sensor.These smart implants will not only give feedback to doctors but will help researchers in the development of future implants. “The sensors will tell us more about the demands that are placed on implants, and with that knowledge, researchers can start to improve the implants even more,” said Towfighian.Towfighian is hopeful that the combination of activity sensors and a self-powered system will increase the life span of knee implants and reduce the need for follow-up surgeries. For young patients looking at the possibility of knee replacement surgery, this development has the potential to be life-changing.The research was published in Smart Materials and Structures. Smart knee implants may soon be a reality thanks to research conducted by a team including faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York. Credit: Binghamton University, State University of New York While the sensors solved one problem, they brought in another. The researchers did not want to power the sensors with a battery that might need to be replaced periodically and therefore, defeat the purpose of a smart implant. Instead, they worked on an energy harvesting mechanism that can power the knee implant from motion. Wathiq Ibrahim, a postdoc in Towfighian’s group, developed a prototype of the energy harvester and tested that under a mechanical testing machine to examine its output under equivalent body loads. 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. OSU Wexner Medical Center first in US to implant device for knee osteoarthritiscenter_img Explore further Provided by Binghamton University Citation: Smart, self-powered knee implants could reduce number of knee replacement surgeries (2019, January 29) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-smart-self-powered-knee-implants-surgeries.html More information: Alwathiqbellah Ibrahim et al, A smart knee implant using triboelectric energy harvesters, Smart Materials and Structures (2018). DOI: 10.1088/1361-665X/aaf3f1last_img read more

Govt tracked and implemented projects worth Rs 12 lakh cr lying in

first_imgSHARE SHARE EMAIL COMMENTS COMMENT Published on economy (general) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday slammed the work culture prevailing under the previous government and said that after 2014 his government tracked and expeditiously implemented projects worth ₹12 lakh crore which were “lying in a ditch” or “consigned to files“.Addressing a rally in state capital Imphal, he alleged that under the earlier government projects worth ₹100 crore used to be completed at an escalated cost of ₹200-250 crore, and this misuse of national wealth made him impatient.So, Modi said, he developed a system named “Pragati” in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) in which pending projects were discussed with officials of the Centre and the state and after removing impediments were speeded up for completion within the given time frame.He said that after coming to power in 2014 his government tracked and expeditiously implemented projects worth ₹12 lakh crore which were “lying in a ditch” or “consigned to files“.The prime minister inaugurated eight key development projects and laid foundation stones for four schemes in the state.“The ‘atke-latke-bhatke’ (pending and forgotten) work culture prevailing during the previous government created a big loss for the country,” Modi claimed.He claimed that earlier elections used to be won merely by “laying foundation stones” and “cutting ribbons” somewhere, and giving rewards elsewhere.He said that after assuming power in 2014, he felt “bechain” (impatient) about this and made an attempt to change the work culture.Modi said he developed a system in the PMO in which pending projects were discussed with officials of the centre and the state and after removing impediments were speeded up for completion within the given time frame.Invoking Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, he said that Manipur, where the INA led by Bose had formed the first provincial government of Independent India, will now show a way to the New India.Governments for the last 30-40 years had kept Manipur far away from the benefits of development, the PM alleged.“I am happy to be here where unity prevails among diversity”, he said. Manipur has a BJP government since March, 2017.He lauded the role of women in the state since the freedom movement and also praised the achievements of ace boxer Mary Kom.The prime minister said the projects which he had inaugurated were expected to improve the lives of the people in the state. “Go to hills and villages of the state. You will find the Manipur government has reached the far-flung areas,” he said.In the northeastern region, the government has built 2,500 km of national highways and 300 km in Manipur alone in last four years, he said.“My government’s policy is transformation by transportation. All the state capitals of northeast states will be linked by the railways,” he said.Chandel district of Manipur is among the top 100 aspirational districts of the country in the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, he said.No genuine citizen will be left out of NRC, assures PMSilchar (Assam), Jan 4 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi Friday assured the people of Assam that no genuine citizen will be left out of the NRC and hoped that the citizenship bill will be soon get Parliament’s nod.“I am aware of the problems and difficulties faced by many during the NRC (National Register of Citizens) process but I assure you that no injustice will be done to any genuine Indian citizens,” he told the Vijay Sankalp Samavesh Rally at Kalinagar near here.“The government is also moving ahead with the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill. It is linked with emotions and related to peoples’ lives. It is not for the benefit of anyone but a penance against the injustice and many wrongs done in the past. I hope the Bill will be passed soon in Parliament,” he said, flagging off the BJP’s Lok Sabha poll campaign in the Northeast.Modi also spoke about his government’s decision to implement Clause 6 of the Assam Accord “hanging” for 35 years.“Now the road is clear to safeguard social, cultural and linguistic identity of Assam.“I am indebted to the people of Assam for voting for the BJP in the recent panchayat elections and I am committed to repay this debt by ensuring the development of the state,” he said.Recalling his inauguration of the country’s longest rail-cum-road bridge at Bogibeel in upper Assam on December 25, Modi said “I am fortunate to be with the people of Assam for the second time in 10 days. The Barak and Brahmaputra valleys are a source of inspiration not only for the state but also for the country”, Modi said.The prime minister arrived at Silchar in Cachar district from imphal as a part of his first phase of poll campaign, wherein he is scheduled to address rallies in 20 states in 100 days before the model code of conduct comes into force.The BJP and its allies is setting the target to win 21 out of the 25 parliamentary seats in eight states in the region and in Assam the party hopes to win at least 11 of the 14 seats.In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, BJP had made massive in roads in Assam winning seven of its 14 parliamentary seats and in the 2016 assembly polls the party emerged as the single largest party with 61 seats while its alliance partners AGP and BPF had won 14 and 12 seats respectively. January 04, 2019 SHARE Manipurlast_img read more