Raiders hit the road knowing they won’t see Mahomes until December

first_imgOAKLAND — The Raiders didn’t look despondent as they departed the Coliseum Sunday, not to return until November.Why?Kirk Cousins isn’t Patrick Mahomes and the Minnesota Vikings don’t play offense like the Kansas City Chiefs. You could say the same about Jacoby Brissett and Indianapolis and Mitchell Trubisky and the Chicago Bears in London.It gets tougher on Oct. 20, when the Raiders take on Aaron Rodgers at Lambeau Field, and DeShaun Watson has done some good things for the Houston Texans, …last_img read more

Fast Qantas wi-fi to debut.

first_imgQantas’s new free wi-fi will debut on one of its domestic Boeing 737-800s next week but it will be the second half of the year before another plane similarly equipped plane joins itReal-world tests on the airline’s system have produced download speeds for individual passengers of between seven megabits-per-second  (Mbps) and 12 Mbps.  A smart TV running at 3-4 Mbps comfortably displays streaming service Netflix in high definition without buffering.The airline had already signed up Netflix, Foxtel and music service Spotify as partners and announced Monday that local service Stan would join the fold with an offer of a 90-day subscription that will be included in the fare.Passengers flying on the airline’s wi-fi enabled B737 will receive a code that will allow them to log-in to Stan’s library of films and TV shows on the plane and on the ground using up to three devices during the three-month period.The partner content will be available from mid-April after the wif-fi system goes online for customers next week. Qantas is using the faster Ka band technology, rather the Ku band system that passengers have found frustrating on some airlines, accessed through the NBN’s Sky Muster satellites. The airline has stress tested it under a full load and says it will be 10 times faster than the slower system.The airline said one of the reasons there had been so much testing was that it was working to reduce lag and buffering.“It’s quite a technical thing to do when you are trying to maintain a constant, high-bandwidth connection with a satellite as you’re travelling at 900 kilometres per hour,’’ the airline said in a statement.“Even when we switch Wi-Fi on for customer use, we know there’s still more fine-tuning for us to do. “That’s why we’re deliberately waiting about six months before rolling it out to the rest of our domestic A330 and B737 aircraft.’’The B737 will operate mainly on East Coast routes and the service is expected to be available on the entire domestic fleet some time in 2018.Meanwhile,  the airline is calling on tech firms to help with its innovation program through a new initiative called AVRO Accelerator. Named after the airline’s first aircraft, the program gives start-ups a chance to work with Qantas Group mentors on ideas to streamline the travel experience, design smarter ways of working, unlock the potential of new technologies and help solve business problems.Up to 10 teams will ultimately be chosen for the 12-week program which was designed in partnership with Australian corporate accelerator Slingshot.“Customer needs keep evolving and the limits of technology are constantly expanding, so there is a clear business imperative for us to find new ways to improve how we operate,’’ Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said.“We’re looking forward to opening up our doors to ideas that are different, challenging and truly innovative. Ideas that could benefit from the expertise and scale at a company like Qantas to refine them and make them a reality.’’The program will look at areas such as creating seamless journeys, building connected platforms and ways of making the airline more efficient without impacting safety.last_img read more

Research seeking the stink bug’s natural enemies

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest When Celeste Welty unzips the white, nylon cage, none of the stink bugs inside move.“They’re very tranquil,” she says.Why wouldn’t they be?  Inside their cage, they enjoy spa-like conditions with all the sunflower seeds and nuts they can feed on, the warmth of the sunlight coming through the window beside them and a few house plants to make it feel like the outdoors, though they’re in a lab.Young offspring clutch the walls of a separate cage inside what appears to be a refrigerator but instead is a warming chamber.Such special treatment for the brown marmorated stink bug, which farmers despise and homeowners often flick out of the way when they discover them indoors during the cold months.Thriving on a range of fruits and vegetables, the marmorated stink bug has damaged or destroyed enough crops in Ohio and across the United States to get the attention of entomologists nationwide.Welty, an Ohio State University Extension entomologist, is involved in a 15-state study to determine the best, and ideally natural, way to get rid of the marmorated stink bug. The study is one of several being done on stink bugs through Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.The brown marmorated stink bug is a foreigner to the United States, and in the absence of natural predators here, its populations are exploding, particularly in the mid-Atlantic region. Arriving in the U.S. from China, the grayish brown bug was first detected in Allentown, Pa. in 2001. Six years later, one was reported in Ohio. Known hotspots for the insect in Ohio are Columbus, Cincinnati, Marietta, Dayton and Youngstown.How the first brown marmorated stink bug got to the U.S. is unclear, but often it is carried through boxes or packages, a hitchhiker of sorts, Welty said.“They like to nestle down into protected, narrow spaces, and that’s often present in packing materials,” she said. “That’s why they’re known to go in cargo and hang out.”Three years ago, a grower in eastern Ohio ordered a shipment of snow fencing, the perforated plastic fencing that comes in large rolls. When the grower unrolled the fencing sent from Pennsylvania, he found live stink bugs sprinkled throughout.From Welty’s colony of marmorated stink bugs, she takes the eggs and places them outside the lab on plant leaves. Two days later when she retrieves them, she hopes some have been attacked by the bug’s natural predator, the tiny Trissolcus japonicus wasp. Also a native of China, the wasp was detected in the United States in 2014 and has since been found in eight states but not yet in Ohio. And nowhere in the U.S. is it plentiful — at least not plentiful enough to keep down the marmorated stink bug population.“The wasp appears to be spreading on its own, but it’s so early on in the introduction of the wasp that we really don’t know,” Welty said.Welty and entomologists across the U.S. are hoping to happen upon some T. japonicus wasps in their states.“We’ve known for a number of years now that this one species of wasp would be great to have,” Welty said.  “The stink bug is a terrible pest in agricultural crops, and we want to know how to control it with more sustainable methods than just spraying a lot.”A second major stink bug study being done through the college examines the effect of stink bugs on soybeans in Ohio. Entomology Associate Professor Andy Michel is leading the research into the species of stink bugs that prey on soybeans: the green, the brown, the red shouldered and the brown marmorated stink bug.Michel is on the second year of a three-year project funded by the Ohio Soybean Council and the North Central Soybean Research Program to determine what species of stink bugs cause the most damage to soybeans and how prevalent the bugs should be before spraying.Seizing on developing soybean seeds, stink bugs attack the plant using their wide and sharp mouths, which extend to nearly half the length of their bodies.“They pierce through the pod, go on to the seed, then add enzymes and saliva to suck up the nutrients,” Michel said. “In the end, it looks like a shriveled up, brown, discolored seed.”Often this damage is not apparent until harvest, because the pod usually retains its shape, despite the smaller seed. That makes it important to scout early for stink bugs and control them if necessary, Michel said.Drought conditions encourage the spread of stink bugs so unusually dry summers including 2016 and 2012, saw some of the state’s worst infestations, Michel said.In one soybean field, stink bugs caused a 30% yield loss in 2012.Stink bugs of any species can be tricky to spot outdoors. They hide well — stationing themselves on the underside of leaves and the back side of flowers. They’re easy to miss, that is, until they come indoors and drop from a ceiling down onto a table. Try to squish them with your hands and they’ll leave you with a parting gift: a smelly stain on your skin that can’t easily be washed off.“We’re not necessarily looking to defeat the stink bug. I think what we’re looking for is an integrated way to manage the bug. Just because you have stink bugs in your field doesn’t mean you need spray,” Michel said.That’s because stink bugs could develop a resistance to pesticides, some stink bugs don’t cause as much harm to soybeans as others and some species are actually beneficial, being natural enemies of other soybean pests.“We want growers to be able to identify stink bug species and determine when their field is at risk for economic damage,” Michel said, “and therefore when they should start spraying.”last_img read more

Yet Another Rant About Buildings and Food

first_imgI saw a commercial the other day for yet another new prepared food product, Marie Callender’s Home-Style Pasta Creations, sold in microwaveable plastic containers that heat the pasta and sauce separately, presumably making them taste more like something you make at home. I don’t know how they taste, but it sure looks like they will produce a lot of plastic waste if they are successful. I was never a big fan of eating packaged meals at work myself, but I do realize that they are relatively inexpensive, and while not as cheap (or as healthy) as homemade meals, they are definitely easy.Why do we need everything to be easy?I recognize that we live in a fast-paced world, driving frantically from place to place, trying to fit work, play, family, hobbies, and exercise into days that often seem too short. It does seem to me that this type of lifestyle is ultimately a self-destructive one that we should strive to change. Getting back to food, one problem we face is that very few people cook anymore. Whether it is an issue of time, will, ability, or a combination, a large portion of our meals are either eaten out; ordered in; or prepared in a store or factory, brought home, heated, and eaten. We do this because it is easy. It doesn’t necessarily taste better, it certainly isn’t healthier, and it doesn’t cost more than cooking it yourself.Not casting stonesWhile I enjoy cooking, and do so often, I will be the first to admit that I eat out more than I should. Although my fast-food habits lean toward burritos and pizza, and I almost never eat at chain burger or chicken places, I must admit that I am occasionally tempted by those advertisements for $2.99 value meals. Think about it: you can barely buy the raw ingredients for that price even if you wanted to cook it yourself. But then again, how bad will it taste and how much will it clog my arteries? These cheap meals are an indicator of our skewed priorities. We may not realize it, but food is pretty cheap, if not necessarily healthy or tasty. Food costs as a percentage of income have consistently fallen for several decades.As a society, we have become addicted to cheap things. Whether it is a meal, a TV, a computer, or even a house—we always look for the “best” deals, and are proud when we get them, myself included. But are those deals as good as they seem? Lots of cheap fast food can lead to obesity, diabetes, and other long-term health problems. I finally gave up on cheap Windows-based PCs that kept crapping out and paid real money for a Mac (which, incidentally, still cost about 80% less than my first computer). For too many years, people bought houses based on the best price per square foot, which, as my buddy Peter Pfeiffer points out, is like buying cars by the pound. I am hopeful that with the reset in real estate values, we will begin to see more value placed on quality and efficiency in our buildings, displacing some of the emphasis on quantity.Let’s get our priorities straightIt’s time to change how we value the things in our lives. We need to be willing to pay more for quality and stop trying to buy quantity at bargain basement prices. This goes for food, household products, and the houses we put them in. I am willing to spend more for high-quality food from locally owned businesses, live in a better, smaller home that is efficient and healthy, and purchase quality products that will last. I’m not all the way there yet; I still find it hard to pass up a bargain, but I am trying to make the change. If we give it a shot, we should end up healthier, happier, with a little less stuff in our smaller houses, and with fewer plastic lunch containers to throw out at the end of the day.last_img read more

Tesla says it has not finalized 2017 Model 3 design

first_imgTesla Motors Inc said on Tuesday the design of its new Model 3 has not been finalized, even though the electric car maker expects to begin building the mass-market sedan within the next 18 months.Tesla’s plans to expand its Fremont, California factory are still in process and some aspects of procuring and making parts for the Model 3 have yet to be determined, the company said in its quarterly financial report.ALSO READ:Tesla Motors plans 500,000 cars in 2018The Model 3, whose projected starting price of $35,000 is less than half of the luxury Model S sedan, is intended to dramatically boost Tesla’s production volume and revenue, and help the company eventually turn a profit.Tesla has missed many of its key production deadlines, including launches of the Model S and Model X sport utility vehicle, because of quality and supply issues.”We are currently evaluating, qualifying and selecting our suppliers” for the Model 3, Tesla said in the report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.ALSO READ:Tesla Model 3 received almost 400,000 orders, says Elon MuskTesla Chief Executive Elon Musk last week jolted investors with the news that he planned to accelerate production at the Fremont plant, which is now targeted to build 500,000 vehicles in 2018, two years ahead of schedule.The accelerated production schedule is “aggressive,” Barclays analyst Brian Johnson said in a phone interview on Tuesday. “Finalizing the design work, and lining up the suppliers and launching in one and a half years seems not possible.”On a conference call with analysts last week, Musk acknowledged that the Model 3 design was not complete, saying it would take another 6-9 weeks to complete engineering decisions.advertisementALSO READ:Tesla Motors heading to India: Will it work out?An initial rush of 325,000 Model 3 reservations, each accompanied by a refundable $1,000 deposit, could persuade Tesla to raise additional funds to help finance the accelerated production.Tesla appeared to be conserving cash in the first quarter as it struggled to cope with parts shortages and early quality problems on the Model X, the financial filing showed.With an operating loss of $248 million, free cash flow dipped to a negative $466 million, even as Tesla slashed capital spending nearly in half.ALSO READ:Tesla Model 3 gets 130,000 orders, twice more than expectedBut the company said in the filing it expected to ramp up capital spending later this year and could spend more than $2 billion in the next three quarters, including more than $500 million to begin production of vehicle battery cells at its Reno, Nevada plant by year-end.Tesla boosted its cash position to $1.4 billion as of March 31, after drawing down more than $400 million from a revolving credit line.last_img read more

Trends of the Game – Elite Skills Workshop

first_imgTouch Football Australia will be holding a Trends on the Game – Elite Skills Workshop in Brisbane on Saturday, 19 October. The workshop will be presented by Australian Women’s coach Peter Bell, and will involve the Australian Women’s Open team training in an interactive workshop where you can observe and ask questions.For more information please download the attached flyer. Register for this workshop via the following link by Friday 11th October http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/EliteTrendsWorkshop19Oct Related Filestrends_of_the_game_-_elite_skills_workshop-pdfRelated LinksElite Skills Workshoplast_img read more

Merger with UASC Drives HapagLloyds Profit Surge

first_imgzoom German liner giant Hapag-Lloyd has started to reap fruit from its merger with the United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) based on the preliminary figures for the full year 2017.Namely, a major jump has been reported in the company’s operating result (EBIT) for the full year, reaching EUR 411 million (USD 502 million) against EUR 126 million reported a year earlier.Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) climbed up to EUR 1.055 billion, against EUR 607 million posted for 2016. The EBITDA margin grew to 10.6 pct compared to 7.9 pct in 2016, the company said.Aside from UASC merger, the better financial performance was also ascribed to a positive development of the worldwide container transport volume and a slight recovery of freight rates.In the fourth quarter of 2017, Hapag-Lloyd’s EBITDA increased to EUR 333 million from EUR 226 million reported in Q4 in 2016 and EUR 42 million higher EBIT year-on-year.Improved freight rates contributed to a revenue increase, which came at EUR 10.0 billion for the full year, compared to EUR 7.7 billion in 2016.At the same time, Hapag-Lloyd recorded a significant volume increase of 29 pct totaling in 9.8 million TEU.The German liner, which is now the fifth-largest liner shipping company in the world, also has sound equity and liquidity reserves amounting to EUR 6.1 billion and EUR 1.1 billion respectively.Hapag-Lloyd has a fleet of 215 container ships and a total transport capacity of 1.6 million TEU.last_img read more

CNN dumps Kathy Griffin after decapitated Trump video

first_imgCNN says it has cut ties with Kathy Griffin after she posted a video that showed her holding a likeness of President Donald Trump’s severed head.The network says it has terminated its agreement with the comedian to appear on its New Year’s Eve programs. For a decade she had co-hosted the annual special with CNN correspondent Anderson Cooper.Her future with CNN had been in doubt since the video appeared on Tuesday. CNN initially called it “disgusting and offensive.”In addition to her losing the CNN job, a New Mexico casino said it was cancelling a July live engagement, and she has lost a commercial endorsement she landed just weeks ago.Griffin has apologized for the video.Meanwhile, President Donald Trump says celebrity Kathy Griffin “should be ashamed of herself” for the video.In a post on his Twitter account Wednesday morning, the president says, “My children, especially my 11-year-old son, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick!”Griffin, who helped with CNN’s New Year’s Eve coverage, has apologized, saying that the brief video was “too disturbing” and wasn’t funny.“I went too far,” she says in a second video. “I sincerely apologize.”Many people online called for Griffin to be jailed.The first video showed a straight-faced Griffin slowly lifting the bloody head. She originally described the project with photographer Tyler Shields as an “artsy fartsy statement” mocking the commander in chief.last_img read more

How major US stock indexes fared Thursday

first_imgIt was another miserable day on Wall Street as a series of big December plunges continued, putting stocks on track for their worst month in a decade.On Thursday:The S&P 500 index slumped 39.54 points, or 1.6 per cent, to 2,467.42.The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 464.06 points, or 2 per cent, to 22,859.60.The Nasdaq composite declined 108.42 points, or 1.6 per cent, to 6,528.41.The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies sagged 23.23 points, or 1.7 per cent, to 1,326.For the week:The S&P 500 is down 132.53 points, or 5.1 per cent.The Dow is down 1,240.91 points, or 5.1 per cent.The Nasdaq is down 382.26 points, or 5.5 per cent.The Russell 2000 is down 84.81 points, or 6 per cent.For the year:The S&P 500 is down 206.19 points, or 7.7 per cent.The Dow is down 1,859.62 points, or 7.5 per cent.The Nasdaq is down 374.98 points, or 5.4 per cent.The Russell 2000 is down 209.51 points, or 13.6 per cent.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Community grants up to 10000 for local nonprofits from BC Hydro

first_img· developing smart energy ideas that promote energy efficiency, reduce carbon emissions and minimize environmental impacts;· building the workforce of tomorrow by focusing on youth programs in trades, science,    technology, engineering and math; and,·  safety education. BC Hydro offers two types of grants;·  Grassroots Grants: funding up to $2,000 for local community-based programs.·  Broad Impact Grants: funding up to $10,000 for organizations who wish to expand an existing program or develop a new program in multiple communities.  In 2018, BC Hydro has funded organizations and projects, such as a Tsunami Warning Pole Marking Project to direct residents safely to high ground during an earthquake in Haida Gwaii-related emergencies. Science Alliance Summer Day Camps run by the Exploration Place in Prince George received a grant as well as the Central Interior BC Science Exhibition and the Northern BC Regional Science Fair. To apply; CLICK HERE PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. – BC Hydro is offering Northern B.C. non-profits, registered charities and community organizations the opportunity to apply for a community grant.Grants are available until March 29, 2019, through its Community Grant program.BC Hydro works with local organizations that are committed to making a difference in their communities with projects focused on;last_img read more