BEIJING, China – China took what it called a major step toward opening its financial industry with a promise Friday to ease limits on foreign ownership of banks and securities firms following a visit by U.S. President Donald Trump that was dominated by trade issues.The announcement by a Cabinet official appeared to respond to mounting U.S. and European complaints that Beijing hampers foreign activity in a variety of industries in violation of free-trade commitments. The American Chamber of Commerce in China, which has appealed to Beijing to ease market barriers, said it looked forward to seeing details of the latest changes.The announcement followed a series of multibillion-dollar contract signings with American companies during Trump’s visit in a tradition aimed at blunting criticism of Beijing’s trade surpluses and market barriers.China will lift its limit on foreign ownership of securities, fund management and futures companies from a minority stake of 49 per cent to a majority stake of 51 per cent and end restrictions after three years, the official, Zhu Guangyao, said at a news briefing. He said a similar change would be made for life insurance companies and those would end in five years.Regulators also will abolish restrictions that limit a single foreign investor’s stake in a Chinese bank to 20 per cent and cap total foreign ownership of any institution at 25 per cent, Zhu said.“In other words, foreign owners can have full ownership of such companies” after three to five years, he said. “This opening up is decisive and the effect will be far-reaching.”Beijing will also gradually reduce tariffs on automotive imports, Zhu said, without providing details.The announcement came hours after Trump left Beijing to attend an Asia-Pacific economic meeting in Danang, Vietnam.Asked about the timing of the changes announced Friday, Zhu cited President Xi Jinping’s comments at the ruling Communist Party’s twice-a-decade congress last month. Xi promised freer markets but also emphasized that Beijing wants to build up state-owned companies that dominate finance, energy and other industries.American, European and other foreign companies complain that despite official pledges to open China’s economy, they are hampered by ownership limits and other restrictions in finance, health care and other promising industries.“I look forward to seeing the details, as opening up the financial sector in particular could greatly improve the allocation of financial resources and support China’s future development,” William Zarit, chairman of the American Chamber, said in an email. “These restrictions, and many others yet to be addressed, have been hindering economic activity in China for far too long.”Ahead of Trump’s visit, the American Chamber had expressed concern that his focus on trade in goods might mean he paid less attention to complaints about restrictions on access to finance, health care and other industries in China’s state-dominated economy.Trump has made narrowing the U.S. trade deficit with China — $347 billion last year — a priority. U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said that was a “central focus” of Trump’s talks with Xi.Xi promised Thursday to open China’s state-dominated economy wider, but foreign companies have been disappointed when previous pledges of liberalization turned out to include restrictions that limited their impact.For its part, Zhu said Beijing wants Washington to ease security-related export controls on high-tech goods and take action on what Beijing says is a promise to grant the country market-economy status.China has pressed the United States for years to end controls on “dual use” technologies with both civilian and military uses such as supercomputers and advanced materials that can be used in warplanes and missiles.Beijing says Washington and other governments agreed to grant market-economy status last year as part of China’s 2001 accession to the World Trade Organization. That would make it harder for them to bring anti-dumping and other cases against China.The United States, the European Union, Japan and other governments reject China’s assertion and say Beijing has yet to follow through on liberalization required to qualify.This week’s contract signings give Trump the opportunity to claim a rare political win following a first year in office marked by little legislative progress on health care and taxes.Commerce Minister Zhong Shan said agreements signed Thursday at a ceremony attended by Trump and Xi totalled $253.4 billion, though many were memoranda of understanding or other arrangements that were less than firm contracts. Commercial sales announced appeared to total about $65 billion, many involving goods Chinese companies routinely buy.That was on top of $9 billion in contracts signed by the two sides on Wednesday covering sales of soybeans, pork, beef and other goods.Such contract signings are a fixture of visits to Beijing by foreign leaders and are meant to defuse trade complaints. They often represent purchases already made by Chinese mobile phone makers, airlines and other customers that are collected for the visit, which means they have little effect on the trade balance.
28 January 2010The new head of the United Nations body tasked with helping post-conflict countries has called for enhanced partnerships with the Security Council and other actors to better assist this vulnerable group to build sustainable peace. The success of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) in the countries on its agenda will be measured by its capability to achieve tangible and sustainable results for people on the ground, said Germany’s Ambassador Peter Wittig, who was elected Chairperson of the Commission’s Organizational Committee on Wednesday. “Our goal should be to live up to the expectation of societies and populations emerging from conflict and improving the contribution of the PBC to building hope for a better future,” he added.Towards this end, he called for achieving a more structured relationship between the Commission and the Security Council, including increased interaction. Also, the Commission should build cohesion among political, security, development and humanitarian actors through dialogue with international financial institutions, regional and subregional organizations and civil society.In this regard, the Organizational Committee intends to establish contacts with the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in the near future, and to visit Washington, D.C., in the coming months. Mr. Wittig added that the analysis of a specific country’s situation should identify clear, limited priorities and channel the requisite resources, and that the Commission should strive to make its working methods more flexible and less cumbersome.The Commission was set up in 2005 to help struggling States avoid slipping back into war and chaos by providing strategic advice and harnessing expertise and finance from around the world to aid with recovery projects. There are currently four countries on its agenda – Burundi, Sierra Leone, Guinea-Bissau and the Central African Republic (CAR).“By helping societies emerging from conflict and laying the foundations for sustainable peace and development, the PBC is indeed entrusted with a crucial contribution to international peace and security,” said the Chairperson.As the central pillar of the UN’s peacebuilding architecture, he added, “its success will likely define, in many ways, the success of the United Nations as a whole.” The outgoing chairperson, Ambassador Heraldo Muñoz of Chile, noted that, during the past year, the Commission had expanded its ties with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and worked to raise its public profile, meeting with peace activists such as the artist Yoko Ono, and beginning the process of designating a Goodwill Ambassador for Peacebuilding.He emphasized the need to establish closer relations with regional and sub-regional organizations because “they are our front-line partners in the peacebuilding processes.”In addition to support from the PBC, countries can also avail themselves of financial assistance from the Peacebuilding Fund to jump-start rebuilding projects.
The intervention brigade will carry out targeted offensive operations, with or without the Congolese national army, against armed groups that threaten peace in the eastern part of DRC – a region that is prone to cycles of violence and consequent humanitarian suffering. The objectives of the new force – which will be based in North Kivu province in eastern DRC and total 3,069 peacekeepers – are to neutralize armed groups, reduce the threat they posed to State authority and civilian security and make space for stabilization activities. The brigade is established within the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in DRC (MONUSCO) for an initial period of one year, as set out in the resolution adopted unanimously today by the Council, which also extended the mission until 31 March 2014. Resolution 2098 also provides a new mandate for MONUSCO, by which it will support Congolese authorities to protect civilians, neutralize armed groups, and implement key reforms to consolidate peace in the country, particularly in the area of security sector reform and rule of law. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the resolution, “which sets out a new, comprehensive approach aimed at addressing the root causes of instability in the eastern DRC and the Great Lakes region,” his spokesperson said in a statement. “He remains personally committed to helping bring peace and stability to the people of the DRC and the Great Lakes region and will keep working to ensure this remains a top priority for the international community,” the statement added. Also hailing the resolution was Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Hervé Ladsous, who told reporters that the text reflected the shared desire of the international community to comprehensively address the root causes of the terrible cycle of violence witnessed in the DRC over nearly two decades. “I do very much think that today could be a significant turning point in the handling of the crisis that for many years the DRC has experienced,” he said. “And at the end of the day, it is about putting an end to the suffering of millions of people.” The newly-authorized brigade is designed to further support the political objectives of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the region – a peace deal signed last month in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Council demanded that the signatories of the Framework fully implement their commitments in good faith, and called on the newly designated Special Envoy for the Great Lakes Region, Mary Robinson, to lead, coordinate and assess the implementation of these commitments.
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Aroldis Chapman celebrates the final out in the 9th inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park in Miami on July 31. The Reds won, 3-1. Credit: Courtesy of TNSA good closer is a luxury for non-contending teams.Although the 2015 season has just begun, the Cincinnati Reds must seriously consider trading Aroldis Chapman.The flame-throwing left-hander has been a mainstay in the Reds’ bullpen since his major league debut in 2010. Featuring a fastball that routinely reaches the triple digits and a crippling slider, Chapman has established himself as one of the premier late-inning guys in MLB, perhaps only surpassed by Craig Kimbrel, formerly of the Atlanta Braves.Despite the incredible success he’s sustained in Cincinnati, including three All-Star appearances, the Reds must look to move Chapman quickly if they plan on contending in the near future. The Sunday trade between the Braves and San Diego Padres, which moved the equally unhittable Kimbrel to San Diego, should serve as an impetus to get a deal done.Despite his reputation as the best closer in the game, Atlanta could only recoup a modest return for Kimbrel. The Braves had to lower their asking price in order to get the Padres to pick up Melvin Upton Jr.’s massive contract.If the Reds were to try to deal Chapman, their return, in a vacuum, would likely be a little less than what Kimbrel would have fetched. But since this is the MLB, and not a vacuum, the Reds are positioned to reap a bounty.Any one of the teams expected to contend this season would be thrilled to have Chapman’s services, and most would be willing to part with one or two premium prospects in order to get a deal done.With the best closer in the game already on the move, the market has shrunk. The demand for a dominant stopper like Chapman will not be higher than it is right now.The Reds must move quickly while they have leverage. Though it would be disappointing for many Cincinnati fans to see the team selling pieces so early in the season, that disappointment would turn into optimism when they see the bounty the Reds obtained in return.Correction: An earlier version of this article stated that Aroldis Chapman pitches right handed, when in fact, he throws left handed.
Prayers to OSU…— Khalid Hill (@Thatboylid80) November 28, 2016 After a heated game on Saturday in which No. 3 Michigan lost to No. 2 Ohio State, 30-27, in double overtime, Columbus was riding high, while those in Ann Arbor, Michigan were hanging their heads in defeat. Then on Monday, OSU’s campus was rocked by an attack on students and faculty. Although, in the end, the only casualty was the attacker himself, the community was left shaken by the day’s events. In the wake of that violence, members of the Michigan football team set aside the long-held rivalry to reach out in solidarity. The University of Michigan Athletic Department and Wolverines players took to Twitter on Monday during and after the attack to express their thoughts and consolations in the wake of the violence.Here are a few of their tweets.Sorry, I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. I pray no one is harmed! https://t.co/TGlcOStVre— Jourdan Lewis (@JourdanJD) November 28, 2016https://twitter.com/Chase_Winovich/status/803263678678257665Stay safe, Buckeyes.— Michigan Athletics (@UMichAthletics) November 28, 2016 Say a prayer for OSU! https://t.co/CmnZ7o9Z8o— Kenny Allen (@Kenny__Allen) November 28, 2016
Judge Norman Wright said gun crime in Liverpool was extremely concerning.“It is disquieting to know that this particular firearm had been used on 19 previous occasions,” he said.“You of course will know that firearms, particularly pistols of this sort, are extremely highly valued in criminal organisations.“They are not something that is just freely passed around. Being so valuable, only extremely trusted people are asked to mind or hold these sort of weapons. The conclusion I draw in this case is you were someone who was highly trusted by the owners or principal users of this firearm; that is why it was given to you.”Speaking after the sentencing, DI Elaine Coulter said she hoped the sentence sent a message that “possessing firearms of any type carries huge risks and is simply not worth it.” “That is nothing to do with him,” he said.“Both his parents were spoken to, he lives in their house, and both said they suspected he came back with it the day before because he came back with a bag. His intention was to hand the weapon back to the person who originally gave it to him. He only had possession of it for one day.” There is no evidence the weapon was used in the Kirkby shooting.Bigley admitted possession of a prohibited firearm and ammunition without a firearm certificate and was jailed for six years and nine months on Thursday.His DNA, along with that of at least three others, was found on the safety catch of the weapon.A magazine was attached – containing four factory-loaded 9mm live rounds – and the serial number had been erased.Andrew Alty, defending, cautioned that Bigley was being sentenced for his possession of the gun and not for its historical use. A gun seized by armed police after a shooting in Merseyside has been described as “the most criminally used firearm in Britain”.The Beretta 9000S self-loading pistol has been used in 19 shootings in the past seven years, lawyers prosecuting a case in Liverpool revealed.Earlier this year, another court heard the gun was linked to more firearms incidents than any other known weapon in the UK.The gun was found during a raid by officers investigating an incident in Kirkby in which a gunman fired at a vehicle in a suspected targeted attack.It was stashed behind boxed off pipes in a bathroom at the home of 24-year-old Adam Bigley. Adam Bigley was jailed for six years and nine months for possessing a loaded firearmCredit:Liverpool Echo The Beretta 9000S pistol was found in a bathroom in Kirkby, MerseysideCredit:Liverpool Echo Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
Eight of the top ten refined tin producers increased production in 2014, including all of the big four companies, latest data collated by ITRI shows. The companies included in the 2014 ‘top ten’ producers table remain the same as the previous year. One of two notable changes in 2014 was PT Timah rising above Minsur. They ended the year in third and fourth respectively. However, when production of 5,010 t from Minsur’s subsidiary, Taboca, is included, Minsur remains in third position. Additionally, Yunnan Chengfeng rose into fifth place to displace Thaisarco, who dropped into sixth.All Chinese companies in the top 10 increased refined tin production in 2014, largely due to the increase in supply and availability of tin ore and concentrates from Myanmar. Yunnan Tin produced a record highest annual tonnage of refined tin for the third year running.Indonesian export restrictions helped PT Timah reverse a long term decline in refined tin production. ITRI is currently working to obtain production information from the private Indonesian smelters, as it is likely that the largest of these should rank just inside the top 10.Refined tin production was maintained by Minsur in 2014 by depletion of concentrate stocks. Pressure from falling grades at San Rafael should be somewhat alleviated by the development of the Bofedal II tin tailings project and increased production from Taboca, which is expanding its Pitinga mine operation.
ATTEMPTS BY OPPOSITION politicians to ask Taoiseach Enda Kenny questions were frustrated by Dáil procedures and the restrictions of Cabinet confidentiality today.During Questions to An Taoiseach, Kenny informed the Dáil that the Cabinet sub-committee on economic infrastructure had met four times but that the contents of such meetings could not be relayed to the House because of the longstanding practice of Cabinet confidentiality.Undetered Sinn Féin’s Gerry Adams used this as a hook to raise the issue of Irish Water and specifically the lack of an emergency, out-of-hours number for water customers.This led to a clash with Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett who noted: “Ah, you’re really straying now.”Adams insisted that Irish Water had become an issue in recent weeks, prompting Barrett to reply: “Don’t be taking me for a fool now.”A frustrated Adams accepted that he could not raise the matter before light-heartedly claiming he was “once again being ‘Section 31-ed’” – a reference to the famous broadcasting ban on republican figures during The Troubles. Source: Hugh O’Connell/YouTubeLater Kenny tried to give Socialist Party TD Joe Higgins information about social housing and homelessness, but was prevented from doing so by Barrett.The clearly frustrated Ceann Comhairle lamented that the whole agenda of Taoiseach’s questions never gets dealt with as TDs spent an hour on four or five questions. Source: Hugh O’Connell/YouTubeRead: Nomadic beasts, hackneyed clichés and mild-mannered TDs: A not very productive day’s work in the DáilRead: ‘Resume your seat while I’m on my feet’: Gerry Adams was given out to in the Dáil today
WASHINGTON (WSVN) — Authorities have issued an Amber Alert for a missing 12-year-old girl who, police said, was abducted from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Thursday morning.According to investigators, JinJing Ma is Asian, stands 4 feet 11 inches tall, weighs about 90 pounds and has black hair. She was last seen wearing a white shirt, blue jeans and a black jacket.Ma was part of a tour group who flew in from China on July 26 to visit schools and sightsee.The group bussed from New York to Washington, D.C. on Wednesday and were scheduled to fly out to the West Coast on Thursday.Investigators said the group arrived in departures and were given their passports.“At some point, the child stated that she was going to use the restroom,” said Metro Airport Authority Police Chief David Huchler. “It wasn’t until they were starting to check through security that another student within that group notified the chaperones that she was missing.”Ma was last seen walking in the arrivals section of the airport with a woman described as Asian and in her 40s. Officials said she stands between 5 feet, 2 inches to 5 feet, 5 inches tall and weighs about 130 pounds. Prior to that, the woman was captured on surveillance video with another Asian man.Police said the child left the airport in a white Infiniti sedan.“We don’t see the Asian male again on video, but we do believe that there is a male subject driving the vehicle that the child left in,” said Huchler.Investigators are working to enhance video to get the plates and better images of the subjects.“The child appears to have left without any force,” said Huchler. “She left, she entered the vehicle without any force, but that does not release any of our concerns. We are still very concerned because we don’t know the reason why this child left with that Asian female.”Authorities do not believe Ma has any family in the country, but they are working with the Chinese Embassy.The FBI is also investigating. Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
WILMINGTON, MA — According to the Wilmington Town Clerk’s calendar, below are the town and school board, committee and commission meeting scheduled for the week of Sunday, June 3, 2018.Sunday, June 3No MeetingsMonday, June 4No MeetingsTuesday, June 5The Wilmington Board of Health meets at 5:30pm in Town Hall’s Room 9. Read the agenda HERE. **The proposed detox facility — relative to its septic system — is on the agenda.**The Wilmington Planning Board meets at 7:30pm in Town Hall’s Room 9. Read the agenda HERE.Wednesday, June 6The Wilmington Board of Selectmen will be conducting interviews with Town Counsel candidates beginning at 6pm in Town Hall’s Room 9.The Wilmington Conservation Commission meets at 7pm in the Town Hall’s Auditorium. Read the agenda HERE.Thursday, June 7No MeetingsFriday, June 8No MeetingsSaturday, June 9No MeetingsAll meetings are open to the public unless noted.(NOTE: While unlikely, it is possible additional meetings could be added to this week’s calendar on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday. It’s best to check the Town Clerk’s calendar mid-week.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWhat Are Town Boards & Committees Talking About? (Week of August 4, 2019)In “Government”What Are Town Boards & Committees Talking About? (Week of September 1, 2019)In “Government”What Are Town Boards & Committees Talking About? (Week of July 7, 2019)In “Government”
WILMINGTON, MA — Theresa A. (Gaetani) Navarro, of Wilmington, formerly of Medford, entered into eternal rest on Monday, November 5, 2018 at home. She was 98 years old.Born in the Roslindale section of Boston, Theresa lived in Medford before settling in Wilmington. She was a talented seamstress by profession.Beloved wife of the late Lawrence J. Navarro. Dear and devoted mother of Lawrence J. Navarro, Jr. of Wilmington and Joanne T. Fredette of Medford. Loving sister of Rose Walsh of Charlestown and the late Michael Gaetani.Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend Theresa’s visiting hours in the Cafasso & Sons Funeral Home, 65 Clark St. (Corner of Main St.) EVERETT, Thursday, Nov. 8 from 4-7 p.m. Her funeral will be from the funeral home on Friday at 10 a.m. followed by a funeral Mass in the Immaculate Conception Church, 487 Broadway, Everett, at 11 a.m. Interment Annunciation Cemetery, Danvers. Parking with attendants on duty.Theresa Navarro(NOTE: The above obituary is from Cafasso & Sons Funeral Home.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email email@example.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedOBITUARY: Lucille C. (Enos) Gilson, 77In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Maureen F. (McKenna) McHugh, 80In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Marie J. (Ciampa) Cummings, 81In “Obituaries”
House Speaker Mike Chenault, R-Nikiski, wields the gavel during the first day of the second regular session of the 29th Alaska Legislature, Jan. 19, 2016. (Photo by Skip Gray/360 North.)The Legislature didn’t finish its work in time for the scheduled end of the session Sunday, but it became clear that the largest stumbling block is how much and how quickly to scale back tax credits for the oil and gas industry.House Speaker Nikiski Republican Mike Chenault says it’s a challenge to write a bill that the Republican-led House and Senate majorities can agree on – and that will gain support from the Democratic-led House minority.“We’re having a hard time getting past the oil tax credit,” Chenault said. “We think that has to be the first piece that passes before we can get buy-in from the minority, or even our members going into closing out the budget and, also, all of the revenue measures.”Lawmakers also didn’t resolve other major bills they debated this session.This includes reconciling the House and Senate versions of the state government’s budget.The House proposed cutting the budget by $283 million, while the Senate would cut it by $345 million. The biggest difference between the two is that the Senate included $100 million dollars in cuts that weren’t allocated to specific areas.In addition, it’s not clear whether the Legislature will adopt new revenue measures.Potential revenue sources include drawing money from the Permanent Fund, which depending on the plan adopted, could cause dividend payments to drop to one thousand dollars. Another measure would tax mining, fisheries, and gasoline.Anchorage Democratic Representative Chris Tuck says the oil and gas tax credit compromise could be based on a provision of a Senate bill that reduces oil tax credits for Cook Inlet production – as well as amendments proposed to a House bill that gained bipartisan support.“What we don’t want to see happening is we don’t want to see Alaskans pulling money out of their pockets to give to the oil industry,” Tuck said. “You know, we’re taking, we’re paying out more to the oil industry than we’re taking in production taxes – that’s just simply unacceptable.”For his part, Chenault says the oil and gas tax credit bill is the linchpin. Once it’s resolved, the other pieces will come together. Those may include time limits on any tax increases – so that they will disappear if the economy improves and oil prices rise.“When you get to the budget, we need to continue to try to reduce the budget where we can to drive the cost of government down where we don’t feel the need or have the need to tax Alaskans or tax Alaskans’ businesses in order to pay for government,” Chenault said. “So we need to keep our thumb on the size of the budget, keep downward pressure on that.”The budget committees for both houses and the budget conference committee is scheduled to meet Monday.
Sunil Grover, Katrina KaifInstagramSunil Grover has had a really good time shooting Bharat with Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif. But at one point of time, Sunil got slapped so hard by Katrina after the former touched her that the sound echoed on the film sets.There’s a scene in Bharat wherein Sunil, who plays the character of Salman’s onscreen childhood friend named Vilayayti, pokes a finger at Katrina, who plays Kumud aka Madam Sir, to check if she is there or not. Within a second, Katrina slaps Sunil and she kept her hand so heavy that cracked Salman instantly when they were shooting for the scene.”Mere character ka naam Vilayayti hai.. Main ungli marke check karta hoon madam sir hai kya..Kumud thappad marti hai… Uske dauran meri hasi choot rahi thi..pehli baar thapad ka awaj jyaada aya to Salman sir hans pade zor se…bahot muskhil se shoot hua tha,” Sunil Grover told Bollywood Hungama in an interview.Working with Salman in Bharat was a dream come true for Sunil who has grown up watching his films. Sunil was jittery to play Salman’s onscreen friend but the Dabangg Khan made him comfortable on the sets and then there was no looking back.Salman and Katrina recently visited The Kapil Sharma Show sans Sunil who seems to be holding a grudge against Kapil Sharma because of their previous tussles.While Sunil is all geared up to watch the audience reaction in theatres on June 5, Bharat is expected to take off to a flying start at the Indian box office.
The Dorothy I. Height/Benning Library is forming a Friends group.The Dorothy I. Height/Benning Library is forming a Friends group. The group’s basic mission is to promote library services, raise funds for special events and advocate for the library. The next meeting is Dec. 1 at 6 p.m. on the lower level of the library, located at 3935 Benning Road N.E. For more information, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s hard to believe that a decade ago Microsoft launched the original Xbox and Xbox LIVE services. Whilst the successor has had a troublesome past, the new slimmer console and Kinect system has been a big success and Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer recently confirmed that 2010 was a big year for Xbox.Microsoft predicted that by the end of the holiday period (last year) they would sell 5 million Kinect sensors and yet this total was surpassed with sales of 8 million units worldwide within the first 60 days of launch. The new slimmer console also helped the cause too, with the console staying six consecutive months as the best-selling console in North America (selling 1.9 million units in December alone).To date, more than 50 million Xbox 360 consoles have been sold worldwide – which is double the amount of the previous generation Xbox. The Xbox LIVE community also continues to grow, with more that 30 million active Xbox LIVE members. In fact, according to Microsoft there is a new member that joins Xbox LIVE every two seconds.On a similar topic we also managed to uncover news that Microsoft is soon to release an update for the Kinect that brings your Avatar to life. Its called Avatar Kinect and will allow you to control your Avatar’s movements and facial expressions. Avatar Kinect will be available this Spring for free to Xbox LIVE Gold members.Read more at the official Microsoft Blog
Bringing life to a mundane Monday morning was Priyanka Nijhawan’s inauguration of solo paintings exhibition – “The Power of Affirmation”. The artist’s idea to bring her beautiful writings of poetry to canvas through her brush was seen. The exhibition was attended by Sunil Sethi, FDCI President, Anil Sharma, Director and Producer of Indian Film Fraternity and President of India’s Grand-daughter as the guest of honor. Among other popular faces were author and socialist Ratan Kaul. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfPresident FDCI, Sunil Sethi mentioned that the artist has used the power of eyes to beautifully depict the stories of women. While the artist Priyanka says, “I want to leave a message to every woman – just be who you are, practice affirming to yourself for what you wish to achieve. The power is just inside you. The poetry in my paintings are part of those positive thoughts that I have come across while affirming. It’s the power of your subconscious. This gave me a thought that instead of painting the pain in me, I should portray the immense power that we possess. Believe me, it’s magical! Just start thinking for it and you will have it. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveIf you will realize the power of your thoughts, you will never let in any negative thoughts.”An artist of Indian origin, Priyanka’s work reflects the inequality and sufferings of the people which she always observed in her surroundings. While her work with pencil colours is an eye catcher, Priyanka often paints on canvas with bright acrylic colours. She has taken part in various prestigious group exhibitions and solo shows. From her work, she aspires to create awareness and do her bit in making the social environment more humane and less vulnerable.You can visit the exhibition till February 10 at the Open Palm Court, India Habitat Centre from 10am to 7pm.
The Cowboys and Dak Prescott are on a roll and are the story of the NFL season. Colin understands the reasoning behind sticking with Prescott and the momentum, but he thinks if the Cowboys’ goal is to win a Super Bowl this year, they should go with Tony Romo. Prescott’s numbers are average, and they’ll need more at some point to win a title.“Dallas is about this offensive line, first and foremost. And they’ve only allowed, defensively, 23 points, twice. Tony Romo would be unbeaten with this team.”Aggressive kids are harder to parent. Aggressive teams are harder to officiate. The Seahawks and Richard Sherman threw the game into total chaos by running into Bills kicker Dan Carpenter. Pete Carroll’s teams are always hyper-aggressive and right up to the line of being out of control. By causing chaos, they get calls. It’s the Pete Carroll way.“Pete’s teams are a little reckless, Pete’s teams are a little out of control. But, it’s a culture that creates high velocity, big emotion. Difficult to officiate.”Steph Curry set an NBA record an NBA record with 13 three-pointers for the Warriors. But, if you dig into the stats, Golden State only beat an awful New Orleans team by 10 on the record night, and they aren’t getting to the free throw line. Colin thinks this will spell big trouble in the long term, especially in the playoffs.“They’re not physical. They do not get to the free throw line, and they get outrebounded, generally every night.”Some critics believe that Rams’ rookie QB Jared Goff is a bust because he isn’t ready to play yet. If that’s the case, Broncos rookie 1st round pick Paxton Lynch is, too. It’s the same situation, and Colin thinks the difference in perception is that people trust John Elway has a plan and knows what he’s doing.“Paxton Lynch is not playing in Denver either, is he a bust? Instead of worrying about #1 pick, Paxton Lynch was a 1st round quarterback in Denver. He’s not playing. Denver doesn’t want to play him. Why isn’t he a bust? No, John Elway’s got a plan.”Critics are complaining that the NFL is doing everything wrong. They point to the ratings being down. They say it’s unwatchable. It’s nothing but a false media narrative. The NFL does parity better than any other sport, pro or college. Other than the Browns and the Niners, every team in the NFL still has a statistical chance of making the playoffs. There are entire divisions are still alive and in contention.Compare that to college football, which is filled with the top teams dominating inferior competition in 50-point blowouts week after week, or baseball, where 1/3 of the teams have no shot by June. The competitive balance in the NFL is unparalleled across major sports, pro or college.Guests:Eric Mangini – Former NFL head coach joins the show to pour cold water on Colin’s NFL theories and discuss Seattle’s aggressive philosophy, whether the Rams should play Jared Goff, and if Jeff fisher is a poor evaluator of offensive talent, and his 4 reasons why the Packers should not fire Mike McCarthy.Cris Carter – NFL Hall of Fame wide receiver is in-studio to discuss whether he thinks Richard Sherman is a dirty player, why his hit on the final play wasn’t a penalty, and the importance of players knowing the rules, where he thinks he ranks in terms of the top corners, whether the Cowboys can win the Super Bowl with Dak, and why he thinks Tony Romo is an injury waiting to happen.Peter Schrager– Fox Sports NFL Insider joins the show to discuss his takeaway on the Cowboys’ vibe after spending some time around the team, why he thinks the Cowboys have turned the page, whether Jared Goff should be playing in Los Angeles, and if Todd Bowles I son the hot seat with the Jets.Nick Wright – FS1 host is in-studio to take offense to Colin’s pick of the Broncos over the Raiders, why Dallas and New England are clobbering Vegas, what bad signs he saw in Steph Curry’s record setting 3-point night, and his get out the vote philosophy that will be sure to get you off the couch to the polling station.
Mr. Incredible: “I don’t know that way—why would they change math? Math is math. Math is math!”This is what makes a great movie. There are probably quite a few parents that can relate to this. But who is right? Is math math? Or are you supposed to do it some other way? How about an example? Solve the following:Timmy has 2,314 pieces of candy that he want to share between among his group of 8 friends. How many pieces of candy does each friend get?Yes, I think that’s a silly question—but I also think that it’s pretty realistic (as an example of something you would see in a math class). To answer this question, you would need to divide the total number of candies by the number of friends. That means 2,314 divided by 8. The “math is math” way to do this is with long division. Yes, you remember long division. It looks something like this:I’ll spare you the details of long division, but I’m sure that’s what Mr. Incredible is thinking about. He knows how to do long division because that’s the way they taught it in his day. Dash, on the other hand, wants to solve this problem with some other method. But which way is right? Honestly, some of these old math ways just don’t really do anything useful.Let’s consider long division. Suppose you trained super hard such that you are a long division expert. What does that get you? Can you do some division problems? Yes. Can you do a quick division problem while shopping in the grocery store? Probably not—unless you have a nice sheet of scratch paper handy. Oh, I know what you are going to say. There are some other useful methods to divide numbers without paper. But in the end, these are essentially just tricks.Long division is not the best way to divide in everyday life—it’s probably better to just use your smart phone. Then why is long division still covered in math courses? Does it lead to a better understanding of the concept of division? Does it lead to a more robust understanding of numbers? It’s possible it could—but not if it’s taught as a simple recipe to remember and repeat. This is probably why Mr. Incredible is frustrated. He wants the old way, but Dash is trying the new way.Could you even make long division useful? Absolutely. Check out this example. [embedded content]So this, is in essence the battle between “new math” and “math is math.” It’s a process of rethinking the way we teach ideas in math to hopefully bring about understanding. The problems come around when parents try to help their kids without really understanding the basics. Hopefully, when Dash grows up he will be able to help his super kids with math.Oh wait … you thought I was going to do some type of Incredibles physics analysis. Sorry. [embedded content]Everyone knows I like to analyze the trailers of upcoming movies—in particular, movies that I’m excited about. In this case, it’s Incredibles 2. I have high hopes for this one since the first Incredibles was really great.In the trailer, we see Mr. Incredible doing his job—helping out with math homework (that’s one of the things dads do). Here is how that goes down.Dash: “That’s not the way you’re supposed to do it, dad. They want us to do it this way.”
After the first preview of its Blockchain Cloud Service at OpenWorld last October, Oracle has confirmed the general release and availability of its Blockchain platform in an official press release this Monday. Before this release, Oracle’s pre-release version of Blockchain Cloud Service was being used by different businesses across the globe such as Arab Jordan Investment Bank, Certified Origins, Solar Site Design, CargoSmart, etc. These organizations say have seen a major difference in their business after adopting Oracle’s Blockchain as a service (BaaS). For instance, Andrea Biagianti, CIO of Certified Origins (Italy based olive oil producer) mentions that the company wanted to trace the products (Bellucci EVOO) that they sell in the market of United States across the entire supply chain. Oracle’s Blockchain service helped the company by making the implementation and collaboration of all the included parties quite simple. It also provided them with a competitive edge over the others in the market. “It adds a further level of transparency and information that is valuable for consumers looking for quality products and helps us to support the excellence of the small farms”, says Biagianti. This Blockchain service will be of great help to organizations in three major ways. Firstly, it provides them with a development platform to build their own Blockchain networks. Secondly, it allows integration with Oracle SaaS, existing third-party applications, Oracle PaaS and other Blockchain networks to drive more reliable transactions. Lastly, clients or customers can program and test smart contracts to automate processes over the Blockchain distributed electronic ledger. The new service is based on top of the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger Fabric, which is a collaboration tool that comes with in-built infrastructure dependencies, REST proxy, and a number of monitoring and operation tools. It helps in building Blockchain based automated ledger such as smart contract technology. A smart contract is an automation tool based on the Blockchain technology. It gets rid of the middleman in a business by enabling automatic exchange of money, property, etc, in a transparent and hassle-free manner. According to Amit Zavery, executive vice president of Oracle Cloud Platform, “Blockchain promises to be one of the most transformative technologies of our generation”. This is quite true as Blockchain is helping transform businesses by making interactions more secure, efficient and cost-effective. It has also made the future Blockchain implementations easier. This means that as the Hyperledger specification evolves and makes new updates, there is no need for the developers to rewrite the company-specific Blockchain applications. Apart from that, new SaaS applications are being offered by Oracle for the Blockchain technology. These can be used in cases like track and trace, warranty and usage, cold chain, etc. Organizations wanting to avail Oracle’s Blockchain services can either pay per usage (without a contract) or via a monthly, yearly or a multi-year deal. There is also a 30-day free trial of the cloud service that the Customers can sign up for. Read Next Oracle Apex 18.1 is here! Oracle announces Oracle Soar, a tools package to ease application migration on cloud
Foreign Trade Minister Anabel González kicked off a business tour of five cities in China and two in India to promote trade and investment to Costa Rica.Officials also will present the new concept of a national brand, “Essential Costa Rica”, launched last Tuesday.The China tour includes the cities of Xiamen, Shenzhen, Hangzhou, Dalian and Beijing, and González will be accompanied by Costa Rica’s Ambassador to China, Marco Vinicio Ruiz, the Trade Ministry’s director of investment, Irene Arguedas, and the director of international relations at the Costa Rican Investment Promotion Agency, Pilar Madrigal.“We will invite Chinese businesses to participate in the VII China-Latin America and Caribbean Business Summit set to be held in Costa Rica in November,” González said.After the China tour the mission will travel to India, where they will visit Bangalore and Delhi.In India the tour will include promotional events at business fairs and meetings with potential investors, particularly in the services sector. Facebook Comments No related posts.