About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Chelsea boss Frank Lampard: Fikayo Tomori my project playerby Paul Vegas21 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea boss Frank Lampard says his “project” player Fikayo Tomori has long justified his faith in him.The centre-back joined Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Ross Barkley as the four Chelsea Lions in Gareth Southgate’s England squad this week. “I put trust in him early in the season – I think that was obvious with the way the pre-season went with the centre-backs,” said Lampard. “At the moment, he has really delivered and long may that continue. I think there is a lot more to come still.“Last year as Derby he was fantastic. But you don’t know until you put players in. Against Sheffield United at home was a game where I thought he deserved his opportunity for his training.”Those are the rules here. You have to train at a level. Then he gave me a big problem because he played so well and he has continued to do that. Yes, he is a project in a way but a nice one because everything you want him to do, he stands up and delivers.”
TORONTO – Royal Bank of Canada saw an uptick in demand for mortgages this fall as borrowers look to secure loans before tougher rules — including a stress test — take effect in the new year, one of the bank’s executives says.Neil McLaughlin, RBC’s head of personal and commercial banking, told analysts on its fourth-quarter earnings call there is a heightened awareness of the banking regulator’s revised mortgage underwriting guidelines, which is expected to reduce the maximum amount homebuyers who don’t need mortgage insurance will be able to borrow.“We have seen a little bit of pull forward this fall,” McLaughlin told analysts on the call Wednesday. “As we talk to customers, some of them are surprisingly aware of what the stress test is about and have decided to move more quickly.”McLaughlin’s comments came as RBC beat analyst expectations with a 12 per cent jump in its fourth-quarter net income to $2.84 billion, driven by double-digit year-over-year increases in personal and commercial banking, wealth management and capital markets. Its latest earnings for the three-month period ended Oct. 31 helped to cap off its fiscal year with a record $11.5 billion profit, up 10 per cent from fiscal 2016.It also comes as the banking regulator in October finalized changes to its mortgage underwriting guidelines — moves aimed at reducing risk amid high household indebtedness and rising home prices, particularly in Toronto and Vancouver.The revised guidelines, called B-20, require would-be homebuyers to prove they can still service their uninsured mortgage at a qualifying rate of the greater of the contractual mortgage rate plus two percentage points or the five-year benchmark rate published by the Bank of Canada. An existing stress test requires those with insured mortgages to qualify at the Bank of Canada benchmark five-year mortgage rate.Meanwhile, the Bank of Canada has raised interest rates twice in recent months to the current overnight lending rate of one per cent. On Tuesday, the central bank said in its semi-annual review of the financial system that the steady climb of household debt and still-hot housing markets remained top vulnerabilities. However, it said the new mortgage guidelines would help mitigate the risks associated with low-ratio mortgages (with down payments of 20 per cent or more).McLaughlin told analysts Wednesday that more than 90 per cent of its mortgages are already underwritten at these higher rates, and expects the overall impact of these guidelines to be “fairly modest.”“The vast majority of our portfolio and loan originations are not really going to be impacted,” he said.The Bank of Nova Scotia’s chief executive, Brian Porter, told analysts on its earnings call Tuesday that he expects the new guidelines to create a “five per cent headwind” to mortgage originations.McLaughlin told analysts that RBC expects “a similar number”.Dave McKay, RBC’s president and chief executive, said he expects mortgage growth to “slightly moderate.” Canada’s biggest lender by market capitalization had $142.1 billion in uninsured mortgages as of Oct. 31, up 11 per cent from $128 billion a year earlier.“As the Canadian housing industry digests the changing regulatory landscape, we expect mortgage growth to slightly moderate to the mid single-digits,” McKay said on the conference call. “Household demand, however, should still be supported by changing demographics including the large influx of immigrants expected in Canada over the next three years.”Borrowers are showing signs of caution, said Mark Hughes, RBC’s chief risk officer.“More recently, we have seen an increasing number of fixed rate mortgage originations, signalling increased conservatism by our clients in a rising rate environment,” he told analysts on the conference call.The guidelines could also help RBC retain its existing borrowers, said McLaughlin.The new stress test rules won’t apply to those renewing their mortgages if they remain with their existing lender.“We do see this as a positive, and we do expect some lift to our retention rates,” McLaughlin said.
OTTAWA – Federal officials have been on a months-long campaign to surreptitiously slip the name Gordie Howe into conversations with top-level American counterparts to promote the new border crossing that will bear the hockey player’s name.The plan hatched earlier this year required government departments to mention the new bridge between Detroit and Windsor, Ont., in any “messaging” on the Canada-U.S. relationship with top politicians and stakeholders, and remind them at every opportunity that the White House supports the project.A presentation outlining the strategy to top civil servants said the goal was to “educate influencers on the importance of the Windsor-Detroit corridor and the new crossing to the U.S. economy.”The proposed six-lane crossing is aimed at easing congestion at the border that is largely funnelled through the privately owned Ambassador Bridge, the busiest crossing between Canada and the United States.The new bridge won’t be completed until at least 2022, provided construction starts next year as planned. The project is expected to cost about $4.8 billion, a tab the Canadian government and a private developer will cover as part of a deal to get the bridge built without the need for congressional approval, which had been impossible to secure.In return, Canada will receive all the revenues from the new bridge to pay off construction costs.At the time the deal was struck, no one was talking about tearing up the North American Free Trade Agreement. Then Donald Trump got elected president and demanded the decades-old trade pact be renegotiated.The May presentation, obtained by The Canadian Press under the Access to Information Act, suggests the Gordie Howe bridge project became part of Liberal efforts to keep NAFTA from falling apart. The presentation and accompanying briefing note for a meeting of deputy ministers repeatedly stresses that Trump sees the bridge as a strategic piece of cross-border infrastructure.Brook Simpson, a spokesman for Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi, said the bridge topic — in particular its place in a retooled NAFTA — is raised whenever Sohi speaks with U.S. politicians.“This project creates a critically important connection that will greatly improve the flow of trade and its reliability once built,” Simpson said. “Regular engagement with U.S. governments at the federal, state, and municipal levels helps maintain the political and public support the project enjoys.”The constant reminders about the bridge are also likely part of efforts to get the U.S. to commit to providing enough border guards at the new and existing border crossings to avoid bottlenecks, said Lydia Miljan, associate professor of political science at the University of Windsor.“That’s where the big battles are going to come,” Miljan said.“You have to educate Washington on the value of having not just the physical infrastructure, but the human infrastructure in place.”Stuart Soroka, a professor of communication studies and political science at the University of Michigan, said national governments regularly lobby neighbouring jurisdictions on large infrastructure projects to maintain support and avoid a counter-movement.“But it does raise some interesting questions about what governments should be spending money on,” Soroka said, “and whether it’s OK for governments to advertise this stuff.”— Follow @jpress on Twitter
The Canadian government has responded to the Trump administration’s decision to apply tariffs on steel and aluminum by imposing retaliatory tariffs effective Sunday on $16.6 billion worth of American imports.The final list includes a 25 per cent surtax on semi-finished goods including steel products and a 10 per cent tariff on a range of consumer goods including orange juice and coffee.Here are some details about the mechanics of how the tariffs will be collected and their possible impact on consumers:How significant are the import tariffs?The $16.6 billion worth of annual tariffs account for about six per cent of the $294 billion total value of goods imported from the United States. The 10 per cent rate on consumer goods represents about 70 per cent of goods impacted by tariffs.How will the tariffs be collected?As with tariffs and duties charged on other imports, they won’t be paid at the border or port but later by the importer of record (wholesaler, retailer, etc.). The surtax is calculated on the Canadian value of the imported good and is subject to the Goods and Services Tax, says Jim Sutton, a vice-president with the Canadian Association of Importers and Exporters.The bonded importer has to account for the tariff within five business days of the item being released by customs and paid at the end of the following month. The Canada Border Services Agency says the surtax will not apply to U.S. goods that are in transit to Canada before July 1.Canadian travellers will be required to pay the surtax on qualified goods if the value of what they are bringing back to the country exceeds their personal exemption.How will the collected tariffs be used?The Canada Border Services Agency will collect the tariffs and transfer the money to the federal government’s general revenues. The proceeds can then be used to offset the cost of a series of initiatives to support Canadian companies and workers that are negatively impacted by U.S. tariffs.What products have been removed from the list of tariffs?Since the initial list was released June 1, the government has removed beer kegs along with nut purees and pastes, berry and fruit purees, jams and jellies (other than banana puree and strawberry jam) and prepared mustard. Also removed are aluminium wire, aluminium foil of a thickness not exceeding 0.2 mm, aluminium tubes and pipes, aluminum stranded wire and cables that are not electrically insulated, along with boards, panels, consoles, desks, cabinets, equipped for electric control or the distribution of electricity.How will tariffs impact retail prices?The Canadian tariffs won’t have much of an impact on consumer prices, Krishen Rangasamy of the National Bank of Canada wrote in a report. He said importers are unlikely to pass on to consumers the higher costs on items such as steel and aluminum. And if costs are passed on, he said the “impacts are set to be minimal” and increase the consumer price index by just 0.1 per cent or so.“In other words, while there are many things to worry about with regards to protectionism, higher consumer prices should be at the bottom of the list, unless of course the Canadian dollar takes a deep enough dive as to cause a surge in import prices.”Will a 10 per cent tariff raise prices by 10 per cent?Cost of goods is just one component of retail prices along with other things like labour, utilities, rent, marketing and advertising. So any impact on retail prices would be lower than the 10 per cent tariff rate, said Karl Littler of the Retail Council of Canada.Will retail prices rise due to tariffs?Littler says he doesn’t believe retailers are going to eat the higher costs over the long haul because retail is already a thin margin business. Sutton says some importers may have to initially absorb some of the higher costs because it takes time before changes are made in supply chains.How can consumers avoid higher prices?Consumers who switch their purchases from American goods subjected to tariffs to alternatives from other countries can avoid the tariff impact on prices, says Littler.“So the consumer, if they’re not deeply brand-attached and presuming that there’s a sufficient flow of alternative choices, may not have to pay the tariff at all,” he said.How will tariffs affect the economy?The bigger issue than tariffs is the continuation of a trade war between Canada and the United States that affects the overall economy, hurts consumer confidence and starts to reduce consumer spending, says Littler.“So it’s not just a price impact on the shelf where to some degree there may be substitutability, it’s about shrinking wallets as well.”
Then on November 24, the Huskies held a special game night in support of Men’s mental health as part of the Movember Campaign in partnership with Mighty Peace Brewing and Beard’s Brewing. Each brewery donated $2 for every growler purchased that day. The Huskies managed to raise $1,672.25 from that event.In total, the Huskies donated $3,153.20 to the Fort St. John Hospital Foundation.Fort St. John Huskies posing with cheque made out to the FSJ Hospital Foundation from the Movember Campaign. Photo by Scott BrooksMegan Brooks, of the Hospital Foundation, says all the money will go towards the Hospital’s Cancer Treatment and Diagnostic Fund.“They gave the money to the Fort St. John Hospital Foundation for the Cancer Treatment and Diagnostic Fund. It’s really cool when third-party events happen, we just hear about them and collect the cheque.”To learn more about Fort St. John Hospital Foundation, you can visit fsjhospitalfoundation.ca FORT ST. John, B.C. – The Fort St. John Huskies recently donated over $3,000 to the Fort St. John Hospital Foundation.Throughout October and November, the Huskies held two fundraising events.On October 24, the Huskies held a special game night in support of Women’s Cancer Awareness. That night included the wearing of pink jerseys, games and a 50/50 raffle with proceeds going towards cancer research. From that night, the Pups were able to raise $1,480.95.
New Delhi: The NIA Monday questioned Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umer Farooq for nearly eight hours in connection with a case related to funding of terror groups and separatist organisations in Jammu and Kashmir, officials said here.He was asked to appear before the agency again Tuesday, the officials said, adding Naseem Geelani, son of pro-Pakistan separatist Syed Ali Shah Geelani, was also summoned on Tuesday. After avoiding the first two summons, the Mirwaiz finally appeared before the National Investigation Agency (NIA) after he was assured of being provided security upon his arrival in the national capital. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The Mirwaiz was accompanied by other separatist leaders, including Abdul Gani Bhat, Bilal Lone and Maulana Abbas Ansari. During the questioning, the Mirwaiz was asked several questions related to the funding of his party Awami Action Committee as well as Hurriyat Conference, the officials said, adding that the replies were not satisfactory. He had been asked to appear before the NIA on March 11 and March 18 but expressed his inability to join the investigation in the national capital, saying he feared for his security in view of “conditions of hostility”. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KIn its third summons issued last week, the NIA promised him security. The NIA probe seeks to identify the chain of players behind the financing of terrorist activities, pelting of stones on security forces, burning down of schools and damaging of government establishments. The case names Hafiz Saeed, the Pakistan-based chief of Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD), the front for the banned Lashker-e-Taiba, as an accused. It also names organisations such as the Hurriyat Conference factions led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani and the Mirwaiz, the Hizbul Mujahideen and the Dukhtaran-e-Millat. Ahead of his appearance before the NIA, the Hurriyat Conference chairman tweeted, “In Delhi today with my colleagues for the NIA summon, efforts to malign leadership for its political stand wont work. Inspite of harassment Hurriyat will continue to seek peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue. Urge people back home to stay calm and peaceful.” On Sunday night, the Hurriyat held an executive meeting and strongly condemned the move to summon the Mirwaiz.
Kolkata: The Kolkata Municipal Corporation is gearing up to supply round the clock drinking water to the slums in the city. The slum dwellers in the city presently get water twice in a day —for around three hours in the morning and for two hours in the late afternoon.”We have already held three meetings and are chalking out a detailed plan on how to go about in developing the infrastructure in the slums so that the residents get round the clock water supply. Mayor Firhad Hakim has instructed us to take all possible measures in this regard,” said Swapan Samaddar, Member, Mayor-in-Council (Bustee Development ) Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe slum dwellers sometimes suffer from scarcity of water particularly during the summer months when the demand increases manifold. Some slum areas are so narrow that vehicles with water tanks are unable to reach. As per initial plans , the KMC Water Supply department will set up a reservoir in the slums wherever there will be availability of space. The water stored will be drawn through a pump and then through a dedicated pipeline it will be supplied to the slum. “We have to carry out awareness among the dwellers to prevent wastage of water,” an official in the Bustee Development department said. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayThere are around 4,500 slums both authorised and unauthorised under KMC’s jurisdictional area. “We are presently producing water in excess to the demand of the Kolkatans. There are supply problem in certain pockets in the added areas of the city like Tollygunj, Bansdroni, Garia and work for supply pipeline is going on in full swing. Work is expected to be over by March 2020,” an official in the Water Supply department said. The construction of a small booster pumping station at Bangur Park in ward 93 and Babubagan in ward 92 has already started. A reservoir with additional capacity of 2 million gallon is being constructed inside the campus of Anandapur booster pumping station to improve water supply in the adjacent areas.
in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News Home Prices Home Sales warren group 2014-12-11 Tory Barringer Home sales in the state of Connecticut increased sizably in October, while prices fell year-on-year for yet another month.Statewide, sales of single-family homes increased 7.0 percent annually in October to a total of 2,379, the Warren Group reported this week. It was the best October sales figure since 2007, when transactions totaled 2,605.The year-to-date sales total came closer to catching up to last year, coming to 21,546—a decline of less than 1 percent.”Single-family home sales have picked up some momentum as we head towards the end of the year,” said Timothy Warren Jr., CEO of the Warren Group. “In the improving economy, buyers are active and finding prices to their liking, well below pre-recession highs.”The median home price for single-family homes sold across the state in October was $241,600, a decline of 3.4 percent from $250,000 a year earlier. It was the eighth straight month in which median home prices were down, according to the Warren Group.Condominium sales were also up over the year, posting a 6.0 percent gain to 667. Year-to-date, condo sales were up almost 3.0 percent as of October 31 to a total of 5,816.The median sales price for condos, meanwhile, was up 2.0 percent year-over-year to $168,000, marking the first annual price increase since June. Connecticut Home Sales Up as Prices Keep Falling December 11, 2014 469 Views Share
March 24, 2017PR Coordinator Sean-Paul VonAncken and maintenance manager Jeff Fisher are having fun putting lightbulbs into lightstrings in preparation to a wedding.[photos by Sue Kirsch]The strings of lights were installed in the Vaults.More to come.
Sky Deutschland has chosen ad management and monetisation specialist FreeWheel to support the management of its digital ad inventory across its platforms.Building on FreeWheel’s relationship with Sky UK, Sky Deutschland will use FreeWheel’s Monetisation Rights Management (MRM) platform to optimise ad placements across its video inventory.FreeWheel’s platform will provide Sky Deutschland sales house Sky Media with tools to manage advertising sales rights, portfolio forecasting solutions, delivering yield-optimisation and campaign analysis, according to the company. According to FreeWheel, Sky will also be able to better manage advertiser conflicts, having access to TV compliance tools to avoid clashes or content/time-of-day restrictions.The agreement also sees Sky make use of FreeWheel’s Advisory Services to support the strategic development of its digital ad sales and operations team.Martin Michel, managing director at Sky Media in Germany said: ‘We are just setting up our digital ad operations team and as a long-standing partner to Sky Media in the UK, we’ll use FreeWheel’s technology and expertise to support our plans to manage digital video ads and develop Dynamic Ad Insertion in Germany.”Thomas Bremond, European managing dDirector at FreeWheel, said: “As broadcasters follow their audiences onto digital platforms, they’re looking for ways to provide great TV experiences across all devices. We are delighted to further extend our existing relationship with Sky in Europe and look forward to working with Sky in Germany. By partnering with FreeWheel and adopting the MRM platform, Sky Deutschland will be able to support its digital assets across all of its digital platforms and set-top-boxes with compelling advertising that will be relevant to the targeted user.
ShareTweet The cast of Derry Girls at the BAFTA Television Awards in LondonDERRY Girls star Nicola Coughlan has responded to a comment criticising the way she looked at the Bafta TV Awards on Sunday night.In a Daily Mirror report about the worst dressed, the 32-year-old’s pink dress was described as “not the most flattering”. The article was initially picked up by a Twitter user who condemned the newspaper for “contributing to the persistent degradation of women”.Nicola responded with: “I look smokin’, sorry ’bout it.”Lots of people have defended and supported the star who plays Clare in the hit Derry Girls comedy series which will be back next year for a third series.Coronation Street’s Sally Ann Matthews, who plays Jenny Bradley, accused the report’s writer of “earning a living from commenting on what women look like”. BBC Sport presenter Gabby Logan said the Mirror “got it wrong on so many levels” while Nicola’s Derry Girls co-star Bronagh Waugh, who plays Erin, said her colleague is a “queen” and “looks class.”She also told the newspaper to “get in the bin”.The worst-dressed article also included I’m A Celebrity Extra Camp host Scarlett Moffatt.“Usually Scarlett pulls out all the stops to look stylish but her dotty design that left one shoulder bare, was not one of her better efforts,” it said.Previously Scarlett has spoken out about “constantly being attacked” over her appearance.Derry Girls star Nicola Coughlan hits back at ‘unflattering’ Bafta dress comment was last modified: May 15th, 2019 by John2John2 Tags: BAFTA Television AwardsDAILY MIRRORDerryDerry Girls star Nicola Coughlan hits back at ‘unflattering’ Bafta dress commentNICOLA COUGHLAN
Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, resigned Wednesday following reports that she bought shares in a tobacco company, among other financial dealings that presented a conflict of interest.”Dr. Fitzgerald owns certain complex financial interests that have imposed a broad recusal limiting her ability to complete all of her duties as the CDC Director,” according to a statement issued by Matt Lloyd, a spokesman for the Department of Health and Human Services. “Due to the nature of these financial interests, Dr. Fitzgerald could not divest from them in a definitive time period.”A report in Politico published Tuesday revealed documents showing several new investments, including in a tobacco company, that Fitzgerald made after she took over the agency’s top job. The CDC is a lead federal agency in preventing smoking and tobacco-related diseases.Fitzgerald had come under fire on Capitol Hill for not divesting financial interests in other companies that present potential conflicts of interest, including drugmaker Merck, health insurer Humana and US Food Holding Co.The Politico report, relying on documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, shows that one day after Fitzgerald purchased stock in Japan Tobacco, she toured the CDC’s Tobacco Laboratory, which studies tobacco’s toxic effects. She sold the tobacco shares on Oct. 26 and all of her stock holdings above $1,000 by Nov. 21, well into her term as CDC director.Fitzgerald previous served as the commissioner of the Georgia Division of Public Health. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.
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Source:https://www.bcm.edu/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Nov 28 2018Using a multidisciplinary approach, an international team of researchers from several institutions, including Baylor College of Medicine, reveals that complex interactions between sugars and the microbiome in human milk influence neonatal rotavirus infection. Reported in the journal Nature Communications, this study provides new understanding of rotavirus infections in newborns and identifies maternal components that could improve the performance of live, attenuated rotavirus vaccines.”Rotavirus infection causes diarrhea and vomiting primarily in children younger than 5, with the exception of babies younger than 28 days of age, who usually have no symptoms. However, in some places, infections in newborns are associated with severe gastrointestinal problems. What factors mediate differences between newborns with and without symptoms are not clearly understood,” said first and corresponding author Dr. Sasirekha Ramani, assistant professor of molecular virology and microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine. “We began our investigation years ago by determining that a particular strain of rotavirus was associated with both asymptomatic infections and clinical symptoms in newborns.”Ramani and her colleagues first looked for answers from the perspective of the virus. They investigated whether factors such as the amount of virus in newborns or the genome of the virus could be linked to the presence of symptoms in newborns, but did not find any connection between those factors. The researchers then posed the question from the perspective of the newborn. Are there factors in newborns that could explain why this virus infects neonates and why there are differences in clinical presentation?In the lab, the researchers investigated whether components of the mother’s breast milk could inhibit infection of MA104 cells, a well-established model for rotavirus studies, with the particular strain of rotavirus they had identified in the neonatal nurseries in India. Unexpectedly, they discovered that specific sugars present in mother’s milk enhanced infection of cells in culture with the neonatal rotavirus strain.”We were surprised by these results,” Ramani said. “Breast milk is known to enhance newborn protection against rotavirus infection and sugars in breast milk can reduce infectivity of other rotaviruses, but here we found the opposite for this particular strain of the virus.”The researchers then went back to the field to determine whether they could validate the results they had found in the lab in a cohort of mother-infant pairs.Related StoriesGrowth problems in preterm infants associated with altered gut bacteria‘Stomach flu’ vaccine prevents type 1 diabetes in childrenGut-boosting food may put an end to childhood malnutrition worldwide”We found that some of the same specific sugars in breast milk that increase infectivity of cells in culture are present in the milk of mothers of newborns with symptomatic infection,” Ramani said.In addition, the researchers found an association between the microbiome in the mothers’ milk and gastrointestinal symptoms in newborns, which prompted new questions, Ramani explained. How does the microbiome contribute to the differences in gastrointestinal symptoms?”What is most interesting to us is that these sugars also increase the replication of the rotavirus attenuated, live vaccine that is similar to the neonatal virus that we are studying,” Ramani said. “Enhanced viral replication can potentially translate into a more effective immune response against the virus, which would lead to better protection for the infant. This is something we want to explore in the future because it could illuminate strategies to improve the effectiveness of rotavirus vaccines in parts of the world where they do not do well.””One of the most important things to us is that these unexpected findings are tightly linked to public health,” said co-author Dr. Mary K. Estes, Cullen Foundation Endowed Professor Chair of Human and Molecular Virology at Baylor College of Medicine and emeritus founding director of the Texas Medical Center Digestive Diseases Center. “The multidisciplinary nature of our team of researchers has allowed us to answer questions about how this unique rotavirus strain infects neonates, confirm the findings in the field and open possibilities to improve the effectiveness of rotavirus vaccines where they are needed the most.””These discoveries are a prime example of the urgent need to improve our understanding of the composition and variation in breast milk components,” said co-author Dr. Lars Bode, associate professor of pediatrics and director and chair of Collaborative Human Milk Research at the Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation Mother-Milk-Infant Center of Research Excellence at the University of California, San Diego. “Understanding how rotavirus and other pathogens can take advantage of breast milk components will guide the development of new vaccination strategies to stay ahead in the host-pathogen arms race.”
Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Apr 26 2019Researchers from HSE University and York University have become the first to analyze the results of 82 functional neuroimaging studies on working memory mechanisms in different adult age groups. The meta-analyses showed that across studies the agreement of various areas of the prefrontal cortex decreases with aging, suggesting reorganization of brain function during healthy aging. The results have been published in the paper ‘Meta-analyses of the n-back working memory task: fMRI evidence of age-related changes in prefrontal cortex involvement across the adult lifespan’: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2019.03.074Working memory is a system that helps keep information readily available as we use it for performing tasks here and now, including complex intellectual operations such as learning, understanding and reasoning. For example, we use this type of memory to detect and remember the most important things in another person’s speech and then give that person a meaningful answer. The resources of working memory are limited, and with age, its size changes.Marie Arsalidou, Zachary Yaple, and Dale Stevens analyzed data on brain activity in 2020 adults, divided into three age groups: young (18-35), middle-aged (35-55), and older adults (55-85). In all the studies, research volunteers played a game called the ‘n-back task’: they were asked to detect and respond whether they had seen the image demonstrated at the moment, ‘n’ positions back. The complexity of the task depends on the value of ‘n’. During an experiment, each study monitored the brain areas that are activated using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).Meta-analysis demonstrated that the involvement of prefrontal cortex areas and their coordination during a task showed increased agreement across studies in young people, lower agreement in middle-aged adults, and no significant agreement in older adults. Lack of agreement in older adults suggests increased variability and individual differences in this group. With older age, parietal regions of the cortex are activated more often, which might be a sign of functional re-organization of working memory mechanisms or of these regions’ compensatory function.Related StoriesAn active brain and body associated with reduced risk of dementiaWearing a hearing aid may mitigate dementia riskStudy provides new insight into longitudinal decline in brain network integrity associated with agingThe prefrontal cortex plays a key role in complicated intellectual processes, including the coordination of different brain areas that are activated during the use of working memory.’Brain changes throughout adulthood, and it appears to be more dynamic that we initially thought. Because the original studies did not consistently report performance scores, we analyzed brain responses with the assumption that working memory performance was comparable. Therefore, we cannot say from our study that working memory skills decrease with age. What we can say is that variability in prefrontal cortex activity may suggest differences in strategies used to problem solve across adulthood. This gives a good target for future work to decipher direct relations among age, brain function and performance’ believes one of the study’s authors, Marie Arsalidou, Assistant Professor at the HSE School of Psychology.The results of this study are comparable with the conclusions of the previous meta-analysis of working memory mechanisms in children, which was carried out by Marie Arsalidou together with HSE researcher Zachary Yaple: during n-back task performance, not only prefrontal and parietal cortex regions are activated in children, but also other brain areas. Further research in this area will help us understand how working memory mechanisms change during development in humans. Source:https://iq.hse.ru/en/news/266810949.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Intel underfoot: Floor sensors rise as retail data source (2018, January 15) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-01-intel-underfoot-floor-sensors-retail.html More businesses are trying mobile apps to lure and keep consumers Online clicks give retailers valuable insight into consumer behavior, but what can they learn from footsteps? It’s a question Milwaukee-based startup Scanalytics is helping businesses explore with floor sensors that track people’s movements.The sensors can also be used in office buildings to reduce energy costs and in nursing homes to determine when someone falls. But retailers make up the majority of Scanalytics’ customers, highlighting one of several efforts brick-and-mortar stores are undertaking to better understand consumer habits and catch up with e-commerce giant Amazon.Physical stores have been at a disadvantage because they “don’t have that granular level of understanding as to where users are entering, what they’re doing, what shelves are not doing well, which aisles are not being visited,” said Brian Sathianathan, co-founder of Iterate.ai, a small Denver-based company that helps businesses find and test technologies from startups worldwide.But it’s become easier for stores to track customers in recent years. With Wi-Fi—among the earliest available options—businesses can follow people when they connect to a store’s internet. One drawback is that not everyone logs on so the sample size is smaller. Another is that it’s not possible to tell whether someone is inches or feet away from a product.Sunglass Hut and fragrance maker Jo Malone use laser and motion sensors to tell when a product is picked up but not bought, and make recommendations for similar items on an interactive display. Companies such as Toronto-based Vendlytics and San Francisco-based Prism use artificial intelligence with video cameras to analyze body motions. That can allow stores to deliver customized coupons to shoppers in real time on a digital shelf or on their cellphones, said Jon Nordmark, CEO of Iterate.ai.With Scanalytics, Nordmark said, “to have (the sensors) be super useful for someone like a retailer, they may need to power other types of things,” like sending coupons to customers.Scanalytics co-founder and CEO Joe Scanlin said that’s what his floor sensors are designed to do. For instance, the sensors read a customer’s unique foot compressions to track that person’s path to a digital display and how long the person stand in front of it before walking away, he said. Based on data collected over time, the floor sensors can tell a retailer the best time to offer a coupon or change the display before the customer loses interest. The next phase in data collection is right under your feet. In this photo taken Dec. 5, 2017, Scanalytics co-founder and CEO Joe Scanlin holds a smart floor sensor his company creates that track people’s movements in Milwaukee. The sensors are among the tools retailers are using to gain insights on consumer habits. (AP Photo/Ivan Moreno) Explore further “Something that in the moment will increase their propensity to purchase a product,” said Scanlin, 29, who started developing the paper-thin sensors that are 2-square feet (0.19-sq. meters) as a student at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater in 2012. He employs about 20 people.Wisconsin-based bicycle retailer Wheel and Sprocket uses Scanalytics’ sensors—which can be tucked under utility mats—to count the number of customers entering each of its eight stores to help schedule staff. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. In this photo taken Dec. 5, 2017, Scanalytics co-founder and CEO Joe Scanlin holds a smart floor sensor his company creates that track people’s movements in Milwaukee. The sensors are among the tools retailers are using to gain insights on consumer habits. (AP Photo/Ivan Moreno) “That’s our biggest variable expense,” said co-owner Noel Kegel. “That sort of makes or breaks our profitability.”Kegel wants to eventually have sensors in more areas throughout his stores to measure where customers spend most of their time and what products are popular, but he said it’s too expensive right now.The cost of having the sensors ranges from $20 to $1,000 per month, depending on square footage and add-on applications to analyze data or interact with digital signs, Scanlin said. He said he’s working with 150 customers in the U.S. and other countries and estimates that about 60 percent are retailers.The emergence of tracking technologies is bound to raise concerns about privacy and surveillance. But Scanlin noted his sensors don’t collect personally identifying information.Jeffrey Lenon, 47, who was recently shopping at the Shops of Grand Avenue mall in Milwaukee, said he wasn’t bothered by the idea of stores tracking foot traffic and buying habits.”If that’s helping the retailer as far as tracking what sells and what no, I think it’s a good idea,” Lenon said.These technologies have not become ubiquitous in the U.S. yet, but it’s only a matter of time, said Ghose Anindya, a business professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business.”In a couple of years this kind of conversation will be like part and parcel of everyday life. But I don’t think we’re there yet,” he said.——A sampling of tracking technologies for traditional storesBrick-and-mortar retailers are using different tracking technologies to better understand their customers and keep up with e-commerce giant Amazon. Here is a sampling of the different tracking methods available to stores:FLOOR SENSORSPaper-thin tiles developed by Milwaukee-based Scanalytics measure foot compressions to analyze people’s movements over time so stores know what products displays draw customers’ attention and for how long. That allows businesses to study what sells, know when to schedule staff for busy times, and what store layout is most effective. The technology might still be too pricey for smaller retailers, however.INTELLIGENT VIDEO CAMERASCompanies such as Toronto-based Vendlytics and San Francisco-based Prism use artificial intelligence with video cameras to analyze body motions. That can allow stores to deliver customized coupons to shoppers in real-time on a digital shelf or on their cellphones on an app.MOTION SENSORSSunglass Hut and fragrance maker Jo Malone are using laser and motion sensors from Perch Interactive to tell when a product is picked up but not bought. The technology can also make recommendations for similar items on an interactive display.WI-FI BEACONSWi-Fi beacons can track customer movements—as long as they connect to the store’s internet. Because not everyone opts in, stores have a smaller sample size to analyze. Another drawback is that it’s not possible to tell whether a customer is inches or feet from a product.
Overflowing bins are one way to spoil the amenity of public space, but sensors can now alert councils when bins need emptying. Credit: Wikimedia How are smart cities meant to meet citizen needs? Big data from a network of sensors can give managers and planners a real-time, big-picture overview of traffic flows, public transport patronage, and water and power use. However, the needs of people in the city must be met at both the meta and micro levels. To do this we need site-specific and real-time information on how people use and value public spaces. Smart technology can collect this information from public spaces. This involves asking questions such as who is using it, how, why and for how long?We are investigating these questions in collaboration with Street Furniture Australia and Georges River Council in New South Wales, with funding from the Commonwealth Smart Cities and Suburbs Program. As cities densify and apartment living becomes the norm, public outdoor spaces will be increasingly important for everyday socialisation, as well as special gatherings and celebrations. Planners and urban designers need to develop their understanding of exactly how these valuable public spaces work to maximise their social and functional amenity. What is the project about?The team will record the detailed use of two public spaces. At first, behaviour mapping will provide detailed observational information about what’s happening in both spaces. The team will then embed invisible digital sensors in and on street furniture. This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. The idea of smart public space is to maximise the public uses and benefits. Georges River Council is looking at ‘healthy living hardware’ that, for example, improves outdoor cooking facilities by including preparation areas and wash stations. 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. In another example, a seat or bench that is hardly being used could be broken or too exposed to weather, and so should be moved. Any lack of use by children or older people could indicate that the location is not child-friendly or not easily accessible, for example. Again, relocation might be considered.But what about the users of these spaces?Smart technology can help to transform the traditional user experience and enhance the capacity of public open space to support 21st-century city living. Think, for instance, of additions such as Wi-Fi or plugin points for laptops and phones.Cities around the world are exploring how technology can improve the management of public spaces and facilities and better connect residents with local facilities and events. In Tel Aviv, for example, residents are issued with the Digi Tel Card. The card gives live updates about:rates and discounts available at sport and recreation facilitieswhat is happening in the citypersonalised information based, for example, on cultural or music preferencesinformation about issues, such as roadworks or community events, that may disrupt streets. Tel Aviv’s DigiTel card connects residents to a personalised, interest-and-location-based digital communication network. Isn’t this technology rather intrusive?While the benefits are many, greater use of technology in parks and the public domain raises questions. Traditionally, urban parks and open spaces have been places where people go to “unwind”, so installing technological devices there may be seen as invasive. Some people may also feel uncomfortable about governments (albeit local ones) gaining data about them in a place where they want to relax. Additional questions relate to privacy, data ownership and how we can protect the technology from vandalism.As for concerns about surveillance, the world has changed and the public space realm has changed with it. Walk through any major Australian city CBD and you will be filmed on CCTV. Various smart card ticketing systems (Opal in NSW, myki in Victoria and go card in Queensland) provide a detailed record of everyone’s movements on public transport. Automatic numberplate scanners on tollways and in police cars are recording where we drive. Even in parks, devices such as mobile phones track our location. By comparison, the sensors on street furniture will be relatively non-invasive and will not identify individual people.The impetus for this research and data-gathering is to assist local government decision-making. By identifying and collecting relevant data, councils will have much-needed evidence to improve people’s lives as they use different public spaces. New scenarios can be identified, offering alternatives to provide support for different urban activities. It is hard to predict just how much will need to alter as our cities densify and we increasingly rely on public spaces to meet many of our social needs. By ensuring all the elements of the public realm are efficiently and appropriately serving residents’ needs, planning and design policies and practices will be able to shape 21st-century cities that are both smart and sociable. Citation: Sensors in public spaces can help create cities that are both smart and sociable (2018, April 10) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-sensors-spaces-cities-smart-sociable.html Explore further Provided by The Conversation Many people feel lonely in the city, but perhaps ‘third places’ can help with that In response to simple design changes, such as seating, the number of people visiting and staying in the space grew. So too did the diversity of visitors, with families and children coming into the space. This extra activity benefited nearby shops.So what can smart technology achieve?One example of smart furniture is smart bins. Street Furniture Australia already has a product with sensors that tell council maintenance crews how full the bin is and whether it needs to be emptied. This information could yield insights about how these bins are being used and when. We will target picnic tables, rubbish bins, barbecues, seats, cigarette ash receptacles, bubblers, power points and lights. The sensors will measure usage, including water and power consumption. They will also provide real-time messages to the council on whether, for example, an ash receptacle is overheating, or a street bollard is damaged.Information like this can be used to improve the amenity and user experience of public open spaces, as well as help to manage these spaces more efficiently. Our public spaces can be great social spaces, or merely places for through traffic. An experiment in Canberra’s Garema Place by Street Furniture Australia shows how such a thoroughfare can be turned around.
FraudBuster is a new data-driven approach designed to help insurers in high fraud rate markets, such as the automobile insurance market, proactively identify risk and reduce fraud. The unique design and deployment of FraudBuster is described in an article in Big Data. Citation: Can FraudBuster help insurers use big data to combat fraud? (2018, April 16) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-fraudbuster-big-combat-fraud.html More information: Saurabh Nagrecha et al, FraudBuster: Reducing Fraud in an Auto Insurance Market, Big Data (2018). DOI: 10.1089/big.2017.0083 Explore further Credit: Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers Pain of rejection makes us more likely to commit fraud Provided by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc The Special Issue on Profit-Driven Analytics was led by Guest Editors Bart Baesens (KU Leuven, Belgium), Wouter Verbeke (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium), and Cristián Bravo (University of Southampton, U.K.).In the article entitled “FraudBuster: Reducing Fraud in an Auto Insurance Market,” Saurabh Nagrecha, Reid Johnson and Nitesh Chawla, University of Notre Dame, IN, described how their novel approach focused on proactively predicting bad risks at the underwriting stage, rather than waiting until a claim is filed to identify fraud. The authors showed that while FraudBuster cannot predict which drivers are likely to get into an accident and commit fraud, it can help identify drivers that are unprofitable and are likely to be fraudulent risks.The special issue also features the article “A Literature Survey and Experimental Evaluation of the State-of-the-Art in Uplift Modeling; A Stepping Stone Toward the Development of Prescriptive Analytics,” by Floris Devriendt and Wouter Verbeke, Vrije Universiteit Brussel and Darie Moldovan, Babe?-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania. In this article the researchers provide an extensive comparative overview of the different approaches to uplift modeling. They perform an experimental evaluation of four real-world data sets to demonstrate the advantages and limitations of different uplift models, which are used to estimate the effect of a strategy, such as a direct marketing campaign, on the outcome based on identified control variables. 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.
SHARE SHARE EMAIL The actor is yet to launch his political outfit, though on December 31, 2017, he had announced that his political entry was sure to fructify. Top film star Rajinikanth on Sunday said he would not contest the bypoll expected to the Tamil Nadu Assembly, nearly a month after declaring that his target was only the Assembly election.While bypolls are expected to 21 Assembly constituencies in the state, Rajinikanth, when asked if he would fight the bypoll since he had declared the Assembly polls to be his only target, tersely said, “No.” The actor is yet to launch his political outfit, though on December 31, 2017, he had announced that his political entry was sure to fructify.To questions like which party he would support (in the bypolls), Rajinikanth told reporters at the airport here, “Sorry, I cannot say anything now.” Asked whether he had meant a national or a regional party when he had mentioned last month that only that party should be supported which would resolve the “water problem” of Tamil Nadu, he said, “Both.” On February 17, Rajinikanth had said “water is Tamil Nadu’s important problem” and asked his fans and people to vote for a party whom they thought would permanently resolve the issue by formulating and implementing projects.The jargon “water problem” is perceived as a reference to water scarcity in parts of the state and the vexed Cauvery issue as well.Rajinikanth had strongly pledged his support for interlinking rivers on more than one occasion in the past.The top actor had also said last month that he would not contest the upcoming Lok Sabha election.“Our target is only the Assembly polls. I am not supporting anyone,” he had said and barred anyone from using his images or the flag of the Rajini Makkal Mandram for political purposes. politics Published on Actor Rajinikanth. – The Hindu Tamil Nadu March 10, 2019 SHARE COMMENT COMMENTS