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Creativity as a Factor of SSD Performance

first_imgHow would you measure your comfort, user experience, smoothness, and happiness while producing music?Intel® Optane™ SSDs open a full horizon of new application usages and use cases. But how would you translate your device-level performance into an application performance improvement? And how would that be translated into the user experience improvements — the ultimate goal of any technology progress? Well, that’s a question I ask myself while evaluating new technologies. In most conditions that can be measured by benchmarks, pure comparing scores or runtime could mean an advantage of one technology over another one. In certain cases that can be just tangible, such as how would you measure the smoothness of your experience or how would you score your feelings? Well that’s more difficult, as everyone can have a different perspective. In this blog I’ll attempt to make some formal assessment of those feelings based on the recent story. If you haven’t had a chance to see Intel’s interview with top electronic music and film composer, BT, find a moment now. It’s worth it!BT is one of the most innovative musicians who utilizes newest technologies in his music production and creates his own. His work for movie scoring is impressive (The Fast and the Furious, Solace, Stealth), and uses the latest advantages of massively sampled orchestration available in real-time. While sampling has existed for years, the way he pushes it to the limits with hybrid orchestra approach and granular synthesis is quite remarkable.As a user of Intel® SSDs 750-series, he was excited by NVMe SSDs and the performance advantages PCIe interface brings into that. Combining multiple SSDs in the RAID volume allows him to improve the overall bandwidth and, of course, expand the capacity. That’s a great deal, and RAID capability is built in all operating systems today. However, RAID can’t improve the access latency. No matter how many drives you combine together, the access latency would represent the worst drive in the array. That means it’s always equal or higher than a standalone SSD latency. There is a class of applications that can’t keep up scaling the performance by only SSD bandwidth improvements and that story is a demonstration on that. Device latency is one of those requirements for the audio sample playback performance improvements.A complete orchestra is sampled into terabytes of a sample data with a playback of up to 3,000 tracks at a time. Available DRAM is only capable for the small pieces of those sounds (attacks), while the body of the sound is streamed directly from storage. For real-time playback, it is critical all data processing is completed within an audio buffer time — say 5ms, which is common latency these days. Otherwise the user will experience audio drops and other artifacts, including fatal interruptions. This is the case where scaling storage bandwidth can’t help to solve the problem.Let’s look at the facts. A single sample is a contiguous piece of a data. Let’s assume each sample is running at 48kHz * 32bits Stereo, which is translated into 0.37 MB/s bandwidth. You would expect that with PCIe SSD, which as an example can read data sequentially at 2.5GB/s, you can play ~7M samples at a time (2.5*1024*1024/0.37). Why would I ever need faster storage if this number far exceeds any real use case? Well, the conclusion is wrong. Sample libraries are based on the thousands of samples played at a time. Different layering, microphone position, and round robin sample rotation are multiplying that by the order of magnitude. Also, streaming of many sequential fragments at a time causes I/O randomization naturally. Now, a workload is randomized with a lowest denominator, which is an application request size or even file system sector size in a common case. With that the storage workload is no longer sequential and must be measured in the IOPS form on a small block size. This is fully random I/O condition for the device-level perspective and it’s distributed across full span of sample library with no hot area.Here we came to the point where NAND-based SSD performance has significant variation based on workload parameters. That’s easier for a drive to run a single threaded sequential workload than a random one or even than many parallel sequential. Of course, the difference is not as noticeable as with hard drives, where you must physically move a head, which has significant latency impact on results and unbelievable performance degradation. But the performance impact is meaningful, too. The root cause is in the NAND architecture, which consists of sectors (minimal read size), pages (# of sectors, determines minimal write size) and erase block size (# of pages, minimal erase size). Combined with a specific NAND-based SSD acceleration on aggregating sequential I/O into a bigger transfer size, we see performance improvements in sequential I/O, which are not available for Random small block I/O.A 3D XPoint™ memory cell solves that problem. It’s cache line addressable by the architecture, requires no erase cycle before write, and significantly lowers access time compared to NAND. Implemented on a block device, Intel Optane™ SSDs are optimized for a low latency and high IOPS performance, especially on low queue depth. This directly correlates with an exceptional quality of service, which represents max latency and latency distribution. As a consequence of that, Optane SSD is capable of delivering similar performance no matter the workload — random vs. sequential or read vs. write.Let’s run some tests to visualize that. I’ll be running this experiment on Microsoft Windows 10. You may expect Linux or OS X charts similar or better, but as we’re evaluating an environment similar to the one installed in BT’s studio, I’ll try to match it here.Configuration: Asus X299-Deluxe, Core i7-7820X, 32GB DRAM, Intel SSD 750 Series 1.2TB, Intel Optane 900p. You may download all FIO configuration scripts from my repository: www.github.com/intel/fiovisualizerNAND-based SSD is in the sustained performance state before every run. Optane SSD doesn’t have this side effect and delivers performance right away. As you see on charts, I’m only considering a scenario of the I/O randomization, and the overall delta in absolute SSD performance under different conditions. I’m leaving other workloads to the side, which are evaluated thoroughly by a third party such as Storage Review, Anandtech, PC Perspective, and others. All of the simulated workloads are stressful for a SSD, in regards of getting to the maximum performance of the device by pushing many I/Os. Intel Optane SSD leads not only on the absolute numbers, but also on the performance variability between workloads. In a real application scenario, such as in the story above, that means stable and predictable performance for a sample playback that doesn’t change its characteristics based on the number of samples, their sizes, the way they are played or any other activities while doing that, such as multitrack record. You may call it “a performance budget” you can split between workloads without sacrificing overall performance.For a musician that means Optane delivers a smooth experience without audio drops, even at peak demands. That also means no need for the offline rendering, channel freezing and sub mixdowns, which equals more time for being creative and unique.last_img read more

Aligning IT Infrastructure to Data Strategy

first_imgGiven the latest advances in advanced analytics technology, organizations across the board have the potential to move analytics from reactive reporting, to proactive and predictive models. However, many struggle to implement analytics at scale, and for the long-term. According to Deloitte, 21% of analytics projects are canceled prior to being delivered, or are never used. We often see that this is due to a lack of preparedness across the organization, to take advantage of the insights that advanced analytics can deliver.Advancing an analytics project, from proof of concept to gaining the full benefits of an advanced solution, needs buy-in and engagement from key stakeholders as they adapt to new systems, applications and workflows. It also puts pressure on the IT department, as a fully-fledged analytics capability uses large volumes of streaming, real-time data rather than more manageable historical data.As well as being at the forefront of analytics innovation, Intel has worked closely with many organizations looking to bring advanced analytics into mainstream use, and implement a lasting advanced analytics capability. Summarizing the key advice from Intel’s new eGuide Ramp up Your Analytics Capabilities, this article outlines the three exercises that can increase the likelihood of success for IT leaders.Conduct an Analytics Capabilities AssessmentWhile organizations often have multiple analytics projects in mind (see below), it pays to adopt a capabilities-driven approach that maps your analytics roadmap to your business strategy, around criteria such as innovation, customer focus, leadership, and people focus. By understanding your key organizational objectives, you can orient your advanced analytics program to deliver on these goals, as well as ensuring the executive sponsorship, strategic focus, and organizational buy-in.You can explore opportunities to bring data-centric thinking into your organizational strategy (if it’s not there already), or start even simpler by considering how different data sources can be united to help streamline decision making in real time. From here you can build and evaluate an analytics action plan, based on available human, IT and other resources.It’s important to understand the skills your existing team has, or could develop, and where it would make sense to call upon external vendors or consultants. Whatever the mix, your project will involve close collaboration and multiple meetings between business, technical and managerial stakeholders, so having a vendor that can speak the language of all these groups will accelerate progress.When working with our customers on their technology plans, we recommend they make the most of the open nature of the x86 architecture by considering solutions from multiple vendors for each aspect of their data management and analytics environments. The same goes for software: many open source frameworks—such as Apache Spark*—are available online, and a number of cloud service providers (CSPs) offer analytics tools and capabilities (such as AWS Sagemaker*).Organizations can adopt a best-of-breed approach, mixing and matching the tools they need, then working with an integration specialist to stitch them all together. Note that security remains a top priority, for internal and third-party solutions.Build an Insights-focused, Cross-organizational TeamThe success of any analytics initiative will depend on the people that design, implement, and use it. It’s critical to think about your organizational structure and how you will build an analytics-enabling team, as well as how to communicate and collaborate with business units and other stakeholders.For a project to achieve long-term success, it will need a committed executive sponsor to ensure funding and the top-down leadership, not only for the PoC but also to enforce any workflow and cultural changes. Executive sponsorship helps drive:Analytics Leadership: Your executive sponsor(s) will need help from others in the leadership team, to promote the vision and drive others to do their part in helping to achieve it.Funding: As the impact of the advanced analytics organization becomes more widely recognized, more funding should become available at an organizational level.Organizational Design: However you choose to structure your analytics capability (horizontal or vertical), it’s important to make sure roles and responsibilities are clearly defined.As attracting and retaining top data scientists can be a challenge, it’s also worth developing a plan for how you will do this. You should have an idea of the specific technical skills you need and can focus recruitment efforts on meeting those requirements, and consider how you will retain and nurture that talent over time.Define an Analytics ProcessA successful analytics process needs to align with your business challenges and goals. For example, CRISP-DM13 (a recognized data mining methodology) starts with the business understanding the problems to be solved, and then investigates how to solve them through iterative application of analytic techniques. This approach enables you to evaluate how the right data is creating the desired impact to your business goals, while incorporating a fail-fast approach to learn what is not working and re-evaluate any disconnects.Your analytics process should also work through the stages of analytics solution maturity, specifically:Descriptive—Understanding what has happened, looking at historical data to describe discernible outcomes or observations of past data behaviorsDiagnostic—Understanding why it has happened, helping explain why the behaviors occurred, and starting to form the foundation of a predictive modelPredictive—Predicting what will happen, by building models and selecting algorithms based on data types used, assumptions made, and other trade-offsPrescriptive—Understanding why it will happen, understanding why a prediction happened or showing the impact of input features on the model’s outcomes.As the team works with the data to create and convert it into insights, a pipeline of how the data must be processed needs to take shape. A solution architect needs to work with data scientists and domain experts to determine what raw data needs to be collected, how to integrate it, where to store it and how to query it across data processing, modeling, and visualization. While this could create challenges (including quality checking), up-front investment can mean that integrating new data sources will be much more efficient.It’s About Working TogetherAs we have seen, these three exercises involve a variety of roles and expertise, from top-level leadership to domain experts, data scientists, engineers and architects, all of whom need to work together to create analytics solutions that can support successful business insights.It’s also important to work closely with your technology solution provider(s), to ensure you have the right combination of tools in place to empower your teams to succeed. At Intel we’re working with other industry players to make this easier for our customers by developing Intel® Select Solutions. These are tailored solutions for common workloads like advanced analytics that optimally combine hardware and software.For more information, read the eGuide Ramp up Your Analytics Capabilities or discover how advanced analytics can help transform your business www.intel.com/analytics. Intel® technologies’ features and benefits depend on system configuration and may require enabled hardware, software or service activation. Performance varies depending on system configuration. No computer system can be absolutely secure. Check with your system manufacturer or retailer or learn more at www.intel.com.last_img read more

Early Lessons From Mexico’s Swine Flu Outbreak

first_imgThe first quick-and-dirty analysis of Mexico’s swine flu outbreak suggests that the H1N1 virus is about as dangerous as the virus behind a 1957 pandemic that killed 2 million people worldwide. But it’s not nearly as lethal as the bug that caused the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic. The world first became aware of this latest outbreak of swine flu in late April (click here for full swine flu timeline). Researchers recognized that the new virus was also causing disease in Mexico. As of today, there have been more than 5000 confirmed cases worldwide and fewer than 50 confirmed deaths.In an effort to understand how the virus spread, an international team led by epidemiologist and disease modeler Neil Ferguson of Imperial College London closely examined the Mexican outbreak with the most current data available. The researchers calculated that each infected person transmitted the virus to about 1 1/2 other people and that it had been around long enough to copy and spread between groups of people between 14 to 73 times.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)The team also showed a strong link between air travel out of Mexico and confirmed cases in other countries. The case fatality rate—the percentage of infected people who died—was estimated to be 0.4%, with a range between 0.3% and 1.5%. That’s far less than the devastating pandemic of 1918 but still substantial, the team reports online today in Science. Epidemiologist Arnold Monto, a flu specialist at the University of Michigan School of Public Health in Ann Arbor, praises the speedy collaboration among researchers from the United Kingdom, Mexico, and the World Health Organization to produce the study. He notes that in other outbreaks, many heavily affected countries have hesitated to share data.Yet Monto cautions that the findings are provisional and that the wide ranges in the estimates indicate limited confidence in the conclusions. “They have been dealing with what they have to work with in terms of the data,” says Monto. Epidemiologist Lone Simonsen of George Washington University in Washington, D.C., also notes that the number of confirmed cases in Mexico is probably a vast underestimate, as the sickest cases are most likely to be tested for the virus. As more mild cases are detected, the denominator could rise, which would lower the fatality rate. “It’s quite possible that the confirmed cases are the tip of the iceberg,” she says. “The uncertainty in the denominator means they could be two or three orders of magnitude off.” Still, both Simonsen and Monto say that they welcome fast-and-dirty analyses right now. “We need to very speedily learn about the infections in the first affected countries,” says Simonsen. “We have burning questions to answer.”last_img read more

Could science destroy the world? These scholars want to save us from a modern-day Frankenstein

first_img The release of a dangerous pathogen might cause a “crunch” in the human population. The long shadow of Frankenstein The study of existential risks is still a tiny field, with at most a few dozen people at three centers. Not everyone is convinced it’s a serious academic discipline. Most civilization-ending scenarios—which include humanmade pathogens, armies of nanobots, or even the idea that our world is a simulation that might be switched off—are wildly unlikely, says Joyce Tait, who studies regulatory issues in the life sciences at the Innogen Institute in Edinburgh. The only true existential threat, she says, is a familiar one: a global nuclear war. Otherwise, “There is nothing on the horizon.”Harvard University psychologist Steven Pinker calls existential risks a “useless category” and warns that “Frankensteinian fantasies” could distract from real, solvable threats such as climate change and nuclear war. “Sowing fear about hypothetical disasters, far from safeguarding the future of humanity, can endanger it,” he writes in his upcoming book Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress.But advocates predict the field will only get more important as scientific and technological progress accelerates. As Bostrom pointed out in one paper, much more research has been done on dung beetles or Star Trek than on the risks of human extinction. “There is a very good case for saying that science has basically ignored” the issue, Price says.Humanity has always faced the possibility of an untimely end. Another asteroid of the size that ended the dinosaurs’ reign could hit Earth; a volcanic cataclysm could darken the skies for years and starve us all.But existential risks arising from scientific advances were literally fiction until 16 July 1945, when the first atomic bomb was detonated. Based on some back-of-the-envelope calculations, physicist Edward Teller had concluded that the explosion might set off a global chain reaction, “igniting” the atmosphere. “Although we now know that such an outcome was physically impossible, it qualifies as an existential risk that was present at the time,” Bostrom writes. Within 2 decades a real existential risk emerged, from growing stockpiles of the new weapons. Physicists had finally assembled Frankenstein’s bride. CRAIG & KARL Creating a modern monster MIKE AGLIOLO/SCIENCE SOURCE Special package: A modern monster The lasting legacy of Frankenstein The specter of Frankenstein still haunts science 200 years later Church says a “crunch,” in which a large part of the world population dies, is more likely than a complete wipe-out. “You don’t have to turn the entire planet into atoms,” he says. Disrupting electrical grids and other services on a huge scale or releasing a deadly pathogen could create chaos, topple governments, and send humanity into a downward spiral. “You end up with a medieval level of culture,” Church says. “To me that is the end of humanity.”Existential risks stemming from the life sciences are perhaps easiest to imagine. Pathogens have proved capable of killing off entire species, such as the frogs that have fallen victim to the amphibian fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. And four influenza pandemics have swept the world in the past century, including one that killed up to 50 million people in 1918 and 1919. Researchers are already engineering pathogens that in principle could be even more dangerous. Worries about studies that made the H5N1 bird flu strain more easily transmissible between mammals led the United States to halt such research until late last year. Terrorists or rogue states could use labmade agents as a weapon, or an engineered plague could be released accidentally.Rees has publicly wagered that by 2020, “bioterror or bioerror will lead to 1 million casualties in a single event.” Harvard microbiologist Marc Lipsitch has calculated that the likelihood of a labmade flu virus leading to an accidental pandemic is between one in 1000 and one in 10,000 per year of research in one laboratory; Ron Fouchier of Erasmus MC in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, one of the researchers involved in the H5N1 studies, has dismissed that estimate, saying the real risk is more like one in 33 billion per year and lab.One measure against “bioerror” might be to make researchers who carry out risky experiments buy insurance; that would require an independent assessment of the risk and would force researchers to face up to it, Lipsitch says. Still, the most important countermeasure is to strengthen the world’s capacity to contain an outbreak early on, he adds, for instance with vaccines. “For biological risks, short of a really massive, coordinated, parallel attack around the world, the only way we are going to get to a really catastrophic scenario is by failing to control a smaller scenario,” he says.Viruses are unlikely to kill every last human, Bostrom says; for him and others, it is AI that poses truly existential threats. Most scenarios center on machines out-smarting humans, a feat called “super-intelligence.” If such AI were ever achieved and it acquired a will of its own, it might turn malevolent and actively seek to destroy humans, like HAL, the computer that goes rogue aboard a spaceship in Stanley Kubrick’s film 2001: A Space Odyssey. By Kai KupferschmidtJan. 11, 2018 , 1:45 PM Max Tegmark, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Philosopher Nick Bostrom believes it’s entirely possible that artificial intelligence (AI) could lead to the extinction of Homo sapiens. In his 2014 bestseller Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies, Bostrom paints a dark scenario in which researchers create a machine capable of steadily improving itself. At some point, it learns to make money from online transactions and begins purchasing goods and services in the real world. Using mail-ordered DNA, it builds simple nanosystems that in turn create more complex systems, giving it ever more power to shape the world.Now suppose the AI suspects that humans might interfere with its plans, writes Bostrom, who’s at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. It could decide to build tiny weapons and distribute them around the world covertly. “At a pre-set time, nanofactories producing nerve gas or target-seeking mosquito-like robots might then burgeon forth simultaneously from every square meter of the globe.”For Bostrom and a number of other scientists and philosophers, such scenarios are more than science fiction. They’re studying which technological advances pose “existential risks” that could wipe out humanity or at least end civilization as we know it—and what could be done to stop them. “Think of what we’re trying to do as providing a scientific red team for the things that could threaten our species,” says philosopher Huw Price, who heads the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk (CSER) here at the University of Cambridge.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)The idea of science eliminating the human race can be traced all the way back to Frankenstein. In Mary Shelley’s novel, the monster gets angry at his creator, Victor Frankenstein, for having spurned him. He kills Frankenstein’s little brother William, but then offers the doctor a deal: Make a female companion for me and we will leave you in peace and go to South America to live out our days. Frankenstein starts working on the bride, but realizes that the couple might reproduce and outcompete humans: “A race of devils would be propagated upon the earth who might make the very existence of the species of man a condition precarious and full of terror.” He destroys the half-finished female, reigniting the creature’s wrath and bringing about his own demise.”I think Frankenstein illustrates the point beautifully,” says physicist Max Tegmark of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, a board member of CSER and a co-founder of a similar think tank, the Future of Life Institute (FLI), near MIT. “We humans gradually develop ever-more-powerful technology, and the more powerful the tech becomes, the more careful we have to be, so we don’t screw up with it.” Humanity’s strategy is to learn from mistakes. When the end of the world is at stake, that is a terrible strategy. Other scientific disciplines may soon pose similar threats. “In this century we will introduce entirely new kinds of phenomena, give ourselves new kinds of powers to reshape the world,” Bostrom says. Biotechnology is cheaper and easier to handle than nuclear technology has ever been. Nanotechnology is making rapid strides. And at a 2011 meeting in Copenhagen, Estonian computer programmer and Skype co-developer Jaan Tallinn told Price about his deep fears about AI during a shared taxi ride. “I’d never met anyone at that point who took that as seriously as Jaan,” says Price, who was about to start working at the University of Cambridge.Price introduced Tallinn to astronomer Martin Rees, a former president of the Royal Society, who had long warned that as science progresses, it will increasingly place the power to destroy civilization in the hands of individuals. The trio decided to launch CSER, the second such center after Bostrom’s Future of Humanity Institute in Oxford, which he launched in 2005. CSER’s name was “a deliberate attempt to push the idea of existential risk more towards the mainstream,” Price says. “We were aware that people think of these issues as a little bit flaky.”CSER has recruited some big-name supporters: The scientific advisory board includes physicist Stephen Hawking, Harvard biologist George Church, global health leader Peter Piot, and tech entrepreneur Elon Musk. In a sign of just how small the field still is, Tallinn also co-founded FLI in 2014, and Church, Musk, Hawking, Bostrom, and Rees all serve on its scientific advisory board. (Actor Morgan Freeman, who has literally played God, is also an FLI adviser.)Most of CSER’s money comes from foundations and individuals, including Tallinn, who donated about $8 million to existential risk researchers in 2017. CSER’s academic output has been “ephemeral” so far, Tallinn concedes. But the center was set up as “a sort of training ground for existential risk research,” he says, with academics from elsewhere coming to visit and then “infecting” their own institutions with ideas.The dozen people working at CSER itself—little more than a large room in an out-of-the-way building near the university’s occupational health service—organize talks, convene scientists to discuss future developments, and publish on topics from regulation of synthetic biology to ecological tipping points. A lot of their time is spent pondering end-of-the-world scenarios and potential safeguards. Most AI experts worry less about machines rising up to overthrow their creators, however, than about them making a fatal mistake. To Tallinn, the most plausible way in which AI could end humanity is if it simply pursued its goals and, along the way, heedlessly created an environment fatal to humans. “Imagine a situation where the temperature rises by 100° or is lowered by 100°. We’d go extinct in a matter of minutes,” Tallinn says. Tegmark agrees: “The real problem with AI is not malice, it’s incompetence,” he says.A current-day analogy is the 2015 tragedy in which a suicidal Germanwings pilot told his plane’s computer to descend to an altitude of 100 meters while flying over the French Alps. The machine complied, killing all 150 on board, even though it had GPS and a topographic map. “It did not have a clue about even the simplest human goal,” Tegmark says. To avoid such calamities, scientists are trying to figure out how to teach AI human values and make sure they stick, a problem called “value alignment.” “There might be fewer than 20 people who work full time on technical AI safety research,” Bostrom says. “A few more talented people might substantially increase the rate of progress.”Critics say these efforts are unlikely to be useful, because future threats are inherently unpredictable. Predictions were a problem in every “foresight exercise” Tait has taken part in, she says. “We’re just not good at it.” Even if you foresee a risk, economic, political, and societal circumstances will all affect how it plays out. “Unless you know not only what is going to happen, but how it is going to happen, the information is not much use in terms of doing something about it,” Tait says.Pinker thinks the scenarios reveal more about human obsessions than real risks. We are drawn to prospects “that are highly improbable while having big impacts on our fitness, such as illicit sex, violent death, and Walter-Mittyish feats of glory,” he writes. “Apocalyptic storylines are undoubtedly gripping—they are a supernormal stimulus for our morbid obsessions.” Sure, he says, one can imagine a malevolent, powerful AI that people can no longer control. “The way to deal with this threat is straightforward: Don’t build one.”Tallinn argues it’s better to be safe than sorry. A 2017 survey showed that 34% of AI experts believed the risks associated with their work are an important problem; 5% said they are “one of the most important problems.” “Imagine you’re on a plane, and 40% of experts think that there is a bomb on this plane,” Tallinn says. “You’re not going to wait for the remaining experts to be convinced.”Price says that critics who accuse him and his colleagues of indulging in science fiction are not entirely wrong: Producing doomsday scenarios is not that different from what Shelley did. “The first step is to imagine that range of possibilities, and at that point, the kind of imagination that is used in science fiction and other forms of literature and film is likely to be extremely important,” he says.Scientists have an obligation to be involved, says Tegmark, because the risks are unlike any the world has faced before. Every time new technologies emerged in the past, he points out, humanity waited until their risks were apparent before learning to curtail them. Fire killed people and destroyed cities, so humans invented fire extinguishers and flame retardants. With automobiles came traffic deaths—and then seat belts and airbags. “Humanity’s strategy is to learn from mistakes,” Tegmark says. “When the end of the world is at stake, that is a terrible strategy.”last_img read more

SPORT-PBL 2 LST

first_imgFormer World No. 1 Lee then starred in a mouth-watering Former World No. 1 Lee then starred in a mouth-watering clash with World no. 11 Tommy which was the trump match for Hyderabad. But it was the Indonesian who had the last laugh as he beat Lee 9-15 15-10 15-14 in an edge-of-the-seat thriller. In a battle of attrition, Lee raced away with the opening match but the Indonesian showed his class when he dominated Lee in the long draining rallies to bounce back in style. With loud cheering following every point, Lee opened up a slender 4-2 lead early on in the decider but Tommy moved into the break with a fragile 8-7 lead. After the interval, the Indonesian continued to dominate the proceedings to move to 12-7. However, Lee reeled off three points to narrow the gap but Tommy used his smashes to move into the match point at 14-10. Lee saved four points with Tommy committing a couple of unforced errors but the Indonesian made it up with a brilliant net play to turn the tables against Hyderabad. PTI ATK KHS KHSlast_img read more

Ranji Trophy, Day 1 wrap: Mayank Agarwal shines as Karnataka post 345/6 vs Rajasthan

first_imgRiding on some good batting, Karnataka posted 345/6 against Rajasthan on the opening day of their Ranji Trophy Group B cricket match at the PVG Raju ACA Sports Complex in Vizianagaram on Sunday.Mayank Agarwal (81) was the top scorer for Karnataka while Lokesh Rahul, who was sidelined from the Indian Test squad due to an injury contributed with a crucial 76 runs.For Rajasthan, Tanvir Mashart ul-Haq scalped three wickets while Pankaj Singh, Deepak Chahar and Salman Khan chipped in with one wicket each. (Ashok Dinda, Pragyan Ojha in ugly fight ahead of Bengal’s Ranji match)Vidarbha bundled out by Maharashtra for a paltry 59In other matches across the country, Vidarbha were bundled out by Maharashtra for a paltry 59 on the opening day of the match at the Eden Gardens at Kolkata.Anupam Sanklecha of Maharashtra returned with career-best figures of 7/25 as Vidarbha batsmen crumbled around him. Shalabh Shrivastava (19) was the top scorer for Maharashtra.In reply, Kedar Jadhav-led Maharashtra were 240/3 at stumps taking a healthy 181-run lead. (BCCI reschedules Ranji Trophy matches in Delhi due to smog)Top-order batsman Naushad Shaikh scored an unbeaten century (111) and will look to pile more misery on the rival bowlers with Ankit Bawne (75 not out) for company.Railways’ reduce Baroda to 183 In Nagpur, Railways’ Avinash Yadav took a five-wicket haul to reduce Baroda to 183 at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground here.Dhiren Mistry (50) was the highest scorer for Baroda while Kedav Devdhar contributed with 45 runs. (Rishabh Pant creates history, slams fastest Ranji Trophy century)In reply, the Railways scored 39 runs at close as both openers Saurabh Wakaska and Shivakant Shukla were still at the crease when umpires dislodged the bails for the day.advertisement Bengal posted 190/3 against Tamil Nadu in Group A In Rajkot, Bengal posted 190/3 against Tamil Nadu in Group A Ranji trophy match at the Madhavrao Scindia Cricket Ground.Manoj Tiwary and Agniv Pan were the top scorers for Bengal with 56 and 51(not out) runs respectively. (Ranji Trophy, Day 3 wrap: Karnataka notch up big win over Vidarbha)For Tamil Nadu, Aswin Crist, Thangarasu Natarajan and Raju Aushik Srinivas chipped in with one wicket each.Haryana posted 295/5 against Jammu and Kashmir in Group CIn Cuttack, riding on brilliant knocks by Nitin Saini and Rajat Paliwal, Haryana posted 295/5 against Jammu and Kashmir in Group C match at the Barabati Stadium.Saini scored 90 runs while Paliwal was unbeaten on 99 when umpires called the day’s play.For Jammu and Kashmir, Parvez Ghulam Rasool Zargar took three wickets for 43 runs.Kerala posted 290/2 against Goa In Mumbai, Bhavin Jitendra Thakkar and Rohan Prem scored brilliant centuries as Kerala posted 290/2 against Goa on the opening day of the Group C Ranji Trophy match at the Brabourne Stadium.For Goa, Rituraj Rajeev Singh and Shadab Jakati chipped in with one wicket each. (Ranji Trophy, Day 2 Wrap: Suryakumar Yadav’s century gives Mumbai advantage over Railways)Hyderabad scored 303/7 against the Services Hyderabad scored 303/7 against the Services on the opening day of the Group C Ranji Trophy match at the Bandra-Kurla Complex in Mumbai.Bavanaka Sandeep (83 not out) was the top scorer for Hyderabad while Akshath Reddy contributed with 64 runs.For the Services, Raushan Raj took four wickets while Vikas Yadav chipped in with one wicket. Uttar Pradesh scored 22/1 after Mumbai were bowled out for 233In Mysore, Uttar Pradesh scored 22/1 after Mumbai were bowled out for 233 on Day One of the Group A Ranji Trophy match at the Srikantadatta Narasimha Raja Wadeyar Ground.Samarth Singh and Saurabh Kumar were at the crease when umpires dislodged the bails for the day.last_img read more

The magic two words that will get people to retweet you

first_imgDan Zarrella is one of my favorite thinkers on social media, because he mines massive amounts of data and bases his recommendations on hard science. This is relatively rare yet needed in the field of social media marketing, and so he’s well worth following.He recently analyzed 2.7 million tweets and concluded the following that people retweet when they are asked nicely as part of the original tweet. Conclusion? If you have something you want people to spread, ask them – with a pretty please.last_img

Naomi Osaka a Barbie girl, in a tennis world

first_imgNaomi Osaka, whose meteoritic rise to the top of the tennis world over the past year has included two Grand Slam titles and the world number one ranking, on Thursday said the newly unveiled Barbie in her likeness was another big honour.The 21-year-old told reporters she played with the famous Mattel dolls as a child and was proud to be part of the company’s 60th anniversary campaign, which includes a more racially diverse set of figurines.”Having that chance to represent people that might not think that they could be represented, that’s a really important goal of mine,” said Osaka, who is the daughter of a Haitian father and a Japanese mother.Osaka said seeing herself in doll form was also a reminder of how much her life has changed since she won the BNP Paribas Open a year ago to kick off her incredible run.”It’s a little bit surreal because last year nothing like that would have come my way but this year I have opportunities like that,” said Osaka, who represents Japan but grew up in the U.S.The top-seeded Osaka, who has posted a picture of the doll on her Twitter feed, will begin her title defense on Saturday when she faces Kristina Mladenovic of France.Honored to be selected as a Barbie Role Model to help inspire the next generation of girls @Barbie #Barbie60 #YouCanBeAnything #barbie pic.twitter.com/5LBZMsNXqJ NaomiOsaka (@Naomi_Osaka_) March 7, 2019last_img read more

Pulisic ready to handle hard knock life

first_imgUnited States Pulisic ready to handle hard knocks that come with USMNT stardom Ives Galarcep @soccerbyives Last updated 2 years ago 12:56 10/10/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Christian Pulisic USA Panama United States Trinidad and Tobago v United States Trinidad and Tobago WC Qualification CONCACAF Opinion The U.S. playmaker is drawing more and more attention from overzealous defenders, and the young star is handling the physical treatment like a pro PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad & Tobago — Christian Pulisic’s mother wasn’t much different than your average parent when it came to seeing her child fouled by bigger kids.Pulisic has been making defenders look silly since his age was in the single digits, and even then he learned that there was a physical price to being so damn talented with the ball. It was a price his mother still wasn’t very happy about, but one his father knew was part of the game.USA 5/1 to beat Trinidad & Tobago 2-0 Article continues below Editors’ Picks Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. “My mom would be the one to kind of yell. My dad would just be like, ‘Get up,'” Pulisic said of those early days getting hacked by defenders. “It was a good balance, I guess.”That balance helped teach him a valuable lesson. There was no point in crying or complaining, because those types of things would just mean the abuser had succeeded in trying to stifle his genius.That is why now, be it with the U.S. national team or Borussia Dortmund, Pulisic shakes off physical play like a cow’s tail might flick away flies, allowing him to focus on continuing his evolution as a top-flight attacking star.”It’s not going to change if I’m freaking out all the time or trying to make a big deal out of it,” Pulisic said. “That’s how it is, and that’s what I have to deal with.”Asked if he sees the abuse as a sign of respect from defenders who fear him, Pulisic had to laugh a little.”It doesn’t feel like respect,” Pulisic said. “I don’t know what you’d call it. It’s definitely something I’m getting used to but it’s nothing I can’t handle.”That much was made clear once again Friday during the U.S. team’s 4-0 win against Panama. The same side that roughed him up in Panama City back in March tried once again to use physical play to slow Pulisic down. The Canaleros certainly weren’t able to keep him from tearing their defense apart, leaving Panama coach Hernan Dario Gomez to lament that Pulisic did what he wanted Friday while recording a goal and an assist.”Yes, he’s handled it well, and if he wants to go to the heights that I think he expects of himself he’s going to have to do that for the next decade,” U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard said. “I don’t think that’s going to stop. Everybody has kind of earmarked him as the superstar, and they want to get a chunk of flesh. He handles it pretty well. His mentality is good. His temperament on the field is good. He doesn’t back down. I think his head’s in the right place.”Clearly the foundation that’s been built in Germany is a tough one, is steely, and it’s probably what you’d expect of a player that’s kind of had his schooling in the Bundesliga,” Howard added. “It certainly pays dividends for us.”GFX Christian Pulisic Quote PS 10092017Pulisic will need to show that tough demeanor again Tuesday against a Trinidad & Tobago side that has nothing to lose after being eliminated from World Cup contention long ago. The Soca Warriors will be sure to key in on Pulisic after his two-goal performance to beat them in the June qualifier in Colorado.Pulisic owes at least some of his ability to shake off rough play to the fact he spent his formative years as a player facing older and bigger players who would often find themselves resorting to fouling the elusive youngster.”I always took abuse. I was always very small, so growing up I was always getting kicked around,” Pulisic said. “It was something I kind of grew up with. Now I guess I don’t know how to explain it. It’s getting a little stronger.”Though he also faces hard fouls in the Bundesliga, the level of abuse he is seeing in CONCACAF is a different level because of lax officiating. That reality has left U.S. coach Bruce Arena shaking his head when asked what he can do to better protect his young star.”How do I (protect Pulisic)? Put him in my arms, perhaps,” Arena quipped Monday. “I have no control over what happens out there. Between the lines the referee’s supposed to be controlling the game so I can’t protect him. We’re hopeful that the referee does a good job protecting all the players.”One suggestion made after Friday’s match was to have U.S. players serve as enforcers who retaliate against those players fouling Pulisic. Arena shot down that misguided notion by pointing out the fact that players can’t afford taking yellow cards and red cards retaliating.That isn’t to say players don’t wish they could retaliate to protect their teammate.”It’s a big problem with our sport. I wish we could (retaliate),” Howard said. “I’m envious of hockey players and baseball players, but we can’t. I don’t think there’s anything we can do. I wish we could, because I think we’d lay it all on the line to project him.”You try your best to do what you can, but the onus is on the individual player in soccer to have enough wherewithal about him, both mentally and physically, and not fly off the handle and ride tackles and play the game. He’s done a good job with that.”The good news for Pulisic is that there is just one more CONCACAF World Cup qualifier to worry about. If the Americans secure the result needed to book a place at the 2018 World Cup, Pulisic will be able to look forward to his first experience on the game’s biggest stage — a stage where the referees are known for calling tight games and generally protecting star players.Whether it’s the World Cup and World Cup qualifiers or matches in the Bundesliga and Champions League, Pulisic is going to continue to face hard challenges from frustrated defenders. That comes with the territory. The good news for the U.S. national team and Dortmund is that Pulisic doesn’t get distracted by that treatment, and instead appears to be motivated by it.”He does handle it very well,” Arena said. “That’s why he’s been successful. He gets back on his feet and continues to play.”last_img read more

New Details Have Emerged From Urban Meyer’s Deleted Text Messages

first_imgA closeup of Urban Meyer during an Ohio State football game.GLENDALE, AZ – JANUARY 01: Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes on the sidelines during the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)New details have emerged concerning the alleged deleted text messages on Urban Meyer’s phone. Messages were allegedly deleted prior to Ohio State’s investigation into its head coach for his handling of domestic violence allegations against now-fired assistant coach Zach Smith.Meyer, of course, has been suspended for the first three games of the 2018 season as a result of the investigation. He’s one game into that suspension. Meyer has already been able to return to practice.USA TODAY published today an update on the deleted text messages.Here is the latest:Nobody involved is answering questions about it now, two weeks after his three-game suspension was announced by Ohio State.Not Ohio State. Not Meyer’s legal team. Not the lead investigator in the case.Over the past 10 days, USA TODAY Sports asked each: Was Meyer asked if he deleted text messages on his phone? If so, how did he respond?And if Ohio State didn’t ask him about this, why not?The lone response came from Ohio State spokesman Chris Davey, who said Tuesday he was looking into it but didn’t know if he was going to be able to answer it.Questions have emerged about the legality of Urban Meyer’s alleged deleting of text messages. He allegedly discussed the concept of deleting text messages with one of his right-hand men at Ohio State.It’s unclear if Urban Meyer was asked about any deleted text messages by Ohio State during the investigation and/or why he did it. It’s also unclear if we’re going to learn anything further about this.Still, it’s clear that questions are going to continue to be asked. And, at a certain point, Meyer is probably going to have to answer them.Ohio State is set to host Rutgers on Saturday. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. E.T. on BTN.last_img read more

Gaming Sector Poised for Growth

first_imgStory Highlights Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Audley Shaw, says with legislation being crafted to support interactive and online gaming, Jamaica’s betting, gaming and lotteries sectors are positioned for growth.Mr. Shaw, who was giving the main address at the 7th Caribbean Gaming Show and Summit at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Rose Hall, St. James, on June 14,  noted that the Casino segment of the industry has not only been picking up momentum, but is now actively courting new investors.“Since last year, the Casino Commission has met with two large international investors which are now advanced in the preparation of their applications for Integrated Resource Development status,” Mr. Shaw pointed out.“With these developments, there is a lot of optimism for the growth potential of the gaming sector,” he added.The Minister informed that for the 2016/2017 fiscal year, the gaming sector recorded $111.25 billion in revenues, compared with $91.9 billion in 2015/16, representing a 21 per cent increase in revenue performance.The lottery segment, he said, posted $36.8 billion in 2016/17, or $1.9 billion over the $34.9 billion of the previous year, while the betting segment recorded a 12 per cent growth over the $8.9 billion of the previous year to close at $10.04 billion.“While we are encouraged by the enormity of these numbers, we recognise, however, that unscrupulous individuals would want to tap these revenues to fund their illegal activities,” Mr. Shaw cautioned.“This is why the Government, through the regulator, increased its surveillance of the industry and will extend all the resources necessary to clamp down on illegal gaming. There is still a lot of work to be done to increase the  level of compliance in the industry, but I am sure, having witnessed the fallout of de-risking themselves, operators are now taking steps to improve their own mechanisms to this end,” he said.He further noted that, as the oversight body, the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC) has forged memoranda of understanding with law-enforcement authorities to have financial intelligence shared in real time.This is a major step in the fight against illicit gaming. We must have eyes and ears on the ground providing information on which the authorities can act speedily,” Mr. Shaw added.“Reports indicate that illegal gambling operations are raking in an estimated $2 billion each year. A big chunk of that money is used to fund the criminal underworld,” he noted.The Minister told the gathering that as industry stakeholders, “we must ban together to stamp out this phenomenon”.“It robs governments of revenues and curtails the activities of lawful entities, when they are forced to invest significant sums to bolster their internal mechanisms,” Mr. Shaw said.“I must laud the enforcement arm of the BGLC for its efforts in this regard, which saw a 132 per cent increase in the number of operations it carried out for fiscal year 2016/17. There were 26 arrests for the year compared with 16 in the previous year, with $240,000 paid over in court fines by unauthorized individuals,” the Minister informed.He said the Government recognises that there is a lot more work to be done and will continue to support the efforts of the Regulator. “Since last year, the Casino Commission has met with two large international investors which are now advanced in the preparation of their applications for Integrated Resource Development status,” Mr. Shaw pointed out. Mr. Shaw, who was giving the main address at the 7th Caribbean Gaming Show and Summit at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Rose Hall, St. James, on June 14, noted that the Casino segment of the industry has not only been picking up momentum, but is now actively courting new investors. Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Audley Shaw, says with legislation being crafted to support interactive and online gaming, Jamaica’s betting, gaming and lotteries sectors are positioned for growth.last_img read more

Australia to Ratify Ballast Water Convention

first_imgzoom The Australian Government has decided to ratify the International Ballast Water Convention, bringing the country into line with global shipping standards, according to Shipping Australia Limited.The decision would enhances marine biosecurity in Australia’s maritime environment and adopt a common standard of ballast water management.“The international shipping industry is willing to bear the high cost of installing compliant ballast water treatment systems in order to remove the risk of transferring marine pests through ballast water,” Rod Nairn, Shipping Australia chief executive officer, said.“We do expect that this reduced risk will be recognised by the Government by a reduction in international vessel arrival fees for biosecurity compliance,” Nairn added.The High Commisioner to Britain, Alexander Downer is signing the protocol today in London, the Maritime Industry Australia Limited (MIAL) informed.The Ballast Water Management Convention (BWMC), which will provide additional marine environmental protection, is scheduled to enter into force on September 8, 2017.last_img read more

Halifax to Host Women in Nontraditional Careers National Conference

first_imgLarge-scale projects such as shipbuilding and offshore exploration will bring a large demand for skilled workers and a boom in opportunities for women in non-traditional careers. Marilyn More, Minister of Labour and Advanced Education, along with Nan Armour, chair of the Canadian Coalition of Women in Engineering, Science, Trades and Technology (CCWESTT), and industry representatives, officially launched the CCWESTT conference at Irving Shipbuilding, today, Jan. 27. “We are thrilled to host this national conference,” said Ms. More. “We are committed to increasing the participation of women in science, engineering, trades and technology. To accomplish this, we have to work in partnership with industry, educational institutions, community organizations and unions to provide opportunities for women in non-traditional careers. This is yet another example of jobsHere, our plan to create good jobs and grow the economy, in action.” The biennial conference, which will take place in Halifax for the first time May 3-5, will attract more than 300 participants from across Canada. “The theme for the conference is Inspiring a SeaChange … Moving Forward Together,” said Ms. Armour. “Although we are making progress, there are many barriers facing women in these non-traditional careers. Having the conference here in Halifax provides women and employers with a wonderful opportunity to work together to remove these barriers and help women to fully participate in jobs such as trades and engineering. “It will also enable employers to address skills shortages in these fields.” “I am confident that, together with our partners, we can move forward so that girls and women can choose to have a viable and accessible career in science, engineering, trades and technology,” said Ms. More. For more information on the CCWESTT conference, visit www.ccwestt2012.ca.last_img read more

Talk of spring election growing in Prince Edward Island political scientist

first_imgCHARLOTTETOWN – The Prince Edward Island government will table its 2018 budget Friday, amid what one observer says are growing signs of an early provincial election call.Don Desserud, a professor of political science at UPEI, said Premier Wade MacLauchlan may be tempted to call an election for May or early June while the Island’s economy is relatively strong and before the opposition parties have additional time to fully prepare.He also cited documents obtained by CBC News suggesting Liberal riding associations are preparing for a possible spring election.The public broadcaster reported that the documents make reference to the premier’s chief of staff wanting election committees at the district level to be ready by May.The next election is set for October 2019 under provincial legislation, but the government is free to call an election when it pleases.“The economic indicators are looking good, at least the government keeps telling us they are,” Desserud said in an interview Thursday.He said MacLauchlan’s government has distributed advertising materials with the slogan, “P.E.I. economy on a tear.”The materials point to the Island having the highest economic growth among the Atlantic provinces between 2012 to 2017, and a rate of population growth that has matched Ontario’s.The rising fortunes of the Green Party in Charlottetown are also a factor in the election timing, Desserud said.“There’s concerns, given the Liberals have been in power for 10 years, that there could be a shifting of support away from them and enough perhaps to give the Greens sufficient seats to force a minority situation,” he said.The Green Party won a recent byelection in Charlottetown, with the Tories placing third, giving the opposition party two seats in the legislature.“There’s a concern that if they (the Liberals) wait longer, the Greens will get stronger and stronger,” said Desserud.The government will present its budget on Friday, however there are recent precedents in Atlantic Canada of provincial elections being called before budgets are passed or legislative sessions concluded.In Nova Scotia, the Liberals tabled their budget last April 27 and a few days later called a May 30 election that the party went on to win with a slim majority.A spokeswoman for the P.E.I. premier’s office did not respond to a request for comment.— By Michael Tutton in Halifax.Follow (at)mtuttoncporg on Twitter.last_img read more

HIGH SCHOOL BANS CANADA GOOSE COATS TO COMBAT POVERTY SHAMING

first_imgAdvertisement British high school has banned Canada Goose, Moncler and other expensive luxury coats to stop students bullying other kids from lower-income backgrounds.After a series of incidents involving students bullying other students from lower-income households, Woodchurch High School in Birkenhead, England banned children from wearing coats made by Canada Goose, Pyrenex and Moncler or other luxury brands.Canada Goose sells a wide range of coats but some of their products can go for several hundred dollars, with some items even costing upwards of $1,000.“There has been feedback from children, who say ‘Gosh, that is our rent for the month,’” the school’s head teacher Rebekah Phillips told CNN.. Twitter Jackets are on display at the Canada Goose Inc. showroom in Toronto. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim Reducing children’s anxiety from failing to keep up with latest fashion of their wealthier peers was one of the reasons given for the decision.Administrators of the school, just outside of Liverpool, U.K., sent a letter to parents explaining the reason for the ban, which will come into effect after Christmas. Advertisementcenter_img Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook Login/Register With:last_img read more

UNP advised against staging rally in Jaffna

(Report by Indika Sri Aravinda for Colombo Gazette) He said the MSD feels the threat from the LTTE still remains in the north and as a precaution the opposition should avoid holding its May Day rally in the area. The UNP MP however questioned how such a threat could exist when the government has claimed that the LTTE has been eliminated. Amaratunga said he feels the government is attempting to disrupt the UNP May Day rally in Jaffna by raising false concerns.The UNP is to stage a joint opposition May Day rally in Jaffna and Amaratunga says the rally will proceed as scheduled despite the advice issued by the MSD. The United National Party (UNP) has been advised against holding its May Day rally in Jaffna owing to possible threats from the LTTE.UNP MP John Amaratunga said that the Ministerial Security Division (MSD) had issued the advice to the Personal Security Officers (PSO) of UNP members. read more

UN Internet governance panel focuses on spam Web use

The United Nations-backed panel meeting in Geneva to examine Internet-related issues wrapped up its third session today having made headway on measuring the adequacy of existing Web governance arrangements, and discussing key public policy issues, such as spam, network security and cyber-crime.The Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG), which opened on Monday, started looking at possible recommendations for future action in the area of Internet governance, and discussed, among other thing, issues related to the administration of Internet names and addresses and the root server system.Participants agreed that spam – unsolicited or “junk” e-mail, generally advertising for some product sent wide-scale to a mailing list or focus group – while not yet officially on the international agenda, had to be discussed as a matter of priority. The focus was on how to deal with it and protect the Internet, as well as on the need for a multi-faceted approach, involving all interested parties. Proposals put forward ranged from drafting model legislation to more informal models of collaboration.Continuing its preparations for the second phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) later this year in Tunis, Tunisia, the 40-member Working Group also addressed two other public policy areas – issues relevant to the Internet but which have a much wider impact, and issues related to Internet governance and development.Working Group Chairman Nitin Desai opened the consultations by pointing out that their main aim was to assess strengths, weaknesses and opportunities. Based on this assessment, there would be a need to look at the changes that may be required. The Working Group should therefore clarify areas that governments were expected to decide on in November at the Tunis Summit, and discuss the roles of the various actors involved in governance arrangements.Yoshio Utsumi, Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), in his capacity as WSIS Secretary-General, reiterated the main tasks that the Working Group needed to address – to find a working definition of Internet governance, to identify public policy issues and to define roles and responsibilities of all actors.Some participants at the open consultations wanted Internet governance arrangements to be rooted in the United Nations framework, which in their view would give legitimacy to the system. Others stressed the importance of private sector leadership, which they saw as more suited to deal with the issue due to the nature of the Internet. read more