13 days agoHyypia has no doubt about Liverpool title focus

first_imgHyypia has no doubt about Liverpool title focusby Paul Vegas13 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool Champions League title winner Sami Hyypia has no doubts about the team’s title focus.But while Liverpool stretched their lead over Manchester City to eight points going into the ­international break, ­Hyypia knows there is a long road ahead. He said, “It’s a great thing that no one left last summer – they kept all their big players. And, when I see them play, it looks like everyone wants to be there to play for this club and be in this team.“I watch them and it seems they are having fun ­playing at such an ­extraordinarily high level – but they are also ­demanding of each other. That’s why they won’t ease up.“I saw the episode with Mo Salah and Sadio Mane, but, far from thinking that was ­damaging to the dressing room spirit, I thought that showed how strong it is.“It just shows that everyone wants to win together and what a great group Klopp has built with that dynamic.“It’s always good to have that kind of openness where players can call each other out. That’s part of the culture of winning.“All successful teams have that desire, which means they ­demand more from each other.“I remember some sparks ­flying between players when I was at Anfield – and that’s only good for the team.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Video: Devin Gardner Responds To Teammate Devin Funchess’ Dunk Video With One Of His Own

first_imgView of a Michigan Wolverines football helmet before their game against the Utah Utes.SALT LAKE CITY, UT – SEPTEMBER 3: View of a Michigan Wolverines football helmet before their game against the Utah Utes at Rice-Eccles Stadium on September 3, 2015 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr/Getty Images)Apparently wide receiver Devin Funchess is not the only recent Michigan football player who can throw down. After seeing Funchess’ impressive dunk on Instagram on Sunday, quarterback Devin Gardner decided to make one of his own.Gardner’s dunks are definitely impressive, especially for someone who focuses on another sport, but we’ll have to award this impromptu Wolverine dunk contest to Funchess. That vertical leaping ability is sure to impress NFL scouts in the coming weeks during the combine and other draft preparation events.last_img read more

Its Time For Drew Brees And The Saints To Break Up

201311-511-56-10 Broncos1984-90Elway (30)1.1 Vikings1968-78Tarkenton (38)9.0 Rams1999-04Bulger (27)10.8+ 201011-58-86-10 If there’s still a good NFL team lurking in Louisiana, it’s hiding. Since a gritty win in Philadelphia in the divisional playoffs on Jan. 4, 2014, the New Orleans Saints have gone 7-12, despite playing one of the NFL’s easiest schedules. According to our Elo ratings, they’ve suffered the sharpest decline of any NFL franchise since the start of the 2014 regular season. And after an 0-2 start this year, they have just a 15 percent chance of making the playoffs.Once upon a time, this would have been no big deal: The Saints have had a mostly miserable history, and they still rank 28th out of the 32 active NFL franchises in lifetime winning percentage. But we’d grown used to something different. Under quarterback Drew Brees, the Saints won a Super Bowl and were consistently in the championship conversation. Despite the occasional hiccup, they maintained a league average Elo rating (1500) or higher for more than six consecutive seasons, from Nov. 24, 2008, through Dec. 7, 2014.What happens when a franchise declines suddenly after such a sustained period of success? Can it sometimes be a false alarm? Can it replace a few parts and return to contention? Or is it doomed to years in the wilderness?The short answer: yes, yes and yes. It depends. It depends mostly on the quarterback situation and how the franchise manages it.I searched our all-time Elo ratings database for cases similar to the Saints’: teams that were very good for at least five consecutive seasons but then declined fairly quickly. (See the official criteria in the footnotes.1Specifically, I looked for cases since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970 in which a team:Had a streak of five or more years in which its Elo rating was always league average (1500) or higher,Had an average Elo rating of 1600 or higher during the streak, andDeclined to an Elo rating of 1450 or lower within a year of the streak breaking. 20077-97-96-10 Dolphins1980-87Marino (26)3.0 Bears1984-89Harbaugh (26), Tomczak (27)0.9 Saints2008-14Brees (35)?? SAINTS’ RECORD WITH … Chiefs1965-74Dawson (39, injured)7.0 20088-88-87-9 Steelers2004-13Roethlisberger (31)1.3 Colts2002-11Manning (35, injured)3.1 YEARDREW BREESAVERAGE QB (PROJECTED)REPLACEMENT QB (PROJECTED) 20127-95-113-13 200913-311-510-6 ) There have been 14 of them since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970, including some of the fabled dynasties of the modern NFL.In the table below, I’ve also named the team’s incumbent quarterback — or quarterbacks, in the event of a controversy — at the time the 1500-plus Elo streak was broken.2If the incumbent was knocked out because of an injury, I still list his name rather than his understudy’s. Finally, I’ve listed how long it took the team to recover to contender status, which I define as having an Elo of 1600 or higher. Total87-5975-7159-87 Cowboys1966-86White (34, injured)5.0 Raiders1982-87Wilson (30), Hilger (25)3.2 200610-610-68-8 TEAMHIGH-ELO STREAKQB AT END OF STREAK (AGE)YEARS TO RECOVER TO CONTENDER STATUS Colts1963-72Domres (25), Unitas (39)3.1 20150-20-20-2 201113-310-69-7 At first glance, this list doesn’t look all that bad for the Saints. The median team took 3.1 years to recover to contender status; the average team3The St. Louis Rams have yet to achieve a 1600-plus Elo rating since the Kurt Warner years ended. For purposes of calculating this average, I’m using their current time of 10.8 years since their high-Elo streak was broken — but the Rams could take longer still to recover. took 4.1 years.But the average looks better than it otherwise would be because of a series of teams that had a stud quarterback in the prime of his career. Dan Marino’s Dolphins, John Elway’s Broncos, Donovan McNabb’s Eagles and Ben Roethlisberger’s Steelers each endured a rough patch. But those QBs were between 26 and 31 when the slump began, leaving their teams with plenty of time to adjust around them.Brees, by contrast, was 35 when the Saints’ Elo streak was broken last season. Past teams like the 1974 Chiefs, 1978 Vikings and 1986 Cowboys that held on to their aging QBs a year or so too long (sometimes through intermittent injuries) took longer to recover — and it was only once a new quarterback replaced the veteran that they did.The 2011 Colts, with Peyton Manning, and the 1999 49ers, with Steve Young, appear to be exceptions — both franchises rebounded pretty quickly after miserable seasons. But Young and Manning were injured so severely that their teams were forced to contemplate life without them — or at least had a convenient excuse to move on. Both had already played their last games for their clubs4And Young, forced into retirement, had played his last in the NFL. at the time their Elo streaks ended, it turned out.Brees is in the all-time inner circle of franchise quarterbacks: Only five others (Manning, Brett Favre, Marino, Elway and Tom Brady) have accumulated more passing yards with a single club. The problem is that a quarterback who’s been good for as long as Brees can obscure deterioration in the team around him. ESPN’s QBR includes a calculation of how much a quarterback is worth to his team in each game, relative to an average or replacement-level QB. This allows us to estimate how often a replacement QB would swing a game from a win to a loss, or vice versa. For instance, if the Saints win by 7 points and QBR estimates that Brees was worth 8.2 points, that’s a game where the quarterback made the difference. 20147-95-114-12 Eagles2000-05McNabb (29)3.0 49ers1981-99Young (38, injured)2.1 Basically, we’re looking for cases in which a quarterback plays really well in a close win.5Or plays poorly in a close loss. Brees has had a lot of those clutch wins.6The Saints don’t have an especially good record in close games under Brees, but he’s played extremely well in close games, win or lose, according to QBR. He’s salvaged a lot of wins from the jaws of defeat and kept the Saints competitive in games in which they’d otherwise have been blown out. Since 2006, his first year with the Saints, the team is 87-59 in the regular season.But with a replacement-level QB, they’d be 59-87 instead, according to this method. And the last few years would have been especially awful: The Saints would have gone 3-13 in 2012, 6-10 in 2013 and 4-12 in 2014 with Mark Sanchez or Brandon Weeden or some other replacement-level QB at the helm.Or … maybe not, since the Saints would have had a lot more money to invest elsewhere in the roster. Brees’s contract counts for $26.4 million against the salary cap this year, making it the biggest cap hit in the league. Because the top NFL quarterbacks are probably underpaid relative to the disproportionate value they can provide to their clubs, that’s not even all that terrible a contract so long as Brees is among the top half-dozen quarterbacks in the league — as he was until this season. But the minute Brees gets hurt, or reverts to league average (or worse) because of age, the Saints are left with a rotting carcass of a roster and a salary cap crisis.In fact, for all their irrationality in other areas, NFL teams have usually been able to anticipate these problems and have been remarkably unsentimental in parting ways with aging franchise quarterbacks in the salary-cap era. The first signs were in 1993, when Joe Montana was traded.7The salary cap would not officially be implemented until 1994, but NFL teams were aware of its impending impact at the time of Montana’s trade in April 1993. Then came Phil Simms — who, after a somewhat miraculous comeback season in 1993, was unceremoniously released the next spring. Troy Aikman might have retired anyway because of injuries, but he was ushered out the door. The same goes for Young, who was not welcome back in San Francisco. Warren Moon was passed around like a joint at a Phish concert toward the end of his career. Kurt Warner was benched. McNabb endured a fate worse than being benched: He was dealt to Washington. Favre had a reality-TV-style mess of a divorce from the Packers. Manning was let go once the Colts knew they had an opportunity to draft Andrew Luck.These NFL teams have generally recognized that it’s better to break up with an aging quarterback a year too early than a year too late. And almost none of those decisions look bad in retrospect.8The Colts releasing Manning without much of a fight might be the closest call, given Manning’s record-setting years in Denver, but they can’t exactly be unhappy with Luck. Brees may still have something left — quite possibly enough to lead another franchise somewhere to a deep playoff run — but it’s probably time for he and the Saints to move on from each other.Check out our NFL predictions for odds on every Week 3 game. read more

Skeptical Football For Once My MVP Isnt Peyton Manning

Even better, Mariota has already missed games. If you’ve read Skeptical Football much, you know I love when QBs sit, because it’s just about the closest you can come to isolating a variable that the sport has to offer. Seven starting quarterbacks have played and missed at least two games each this year.7Oddly enough, though Dallas is desperate to get Tony Romo back (and rightfully so), their problem since he left hasn’t been moving the ball — at least relative to their horrendous defense. You can see what happened once the QBs were out in the chart next to this paragraph. I’ve also added the “gold standard” of WOWY seasons, Aaron Rodgers’s absence from the Green Bay Packers in 2013, for comparison.Note that Mariota’s line is strikingly similar to Rodgers’s! Of course, the latter came over a larger number of games (played nine and missed seven), but this does raise the tantalizing possibility that Mariota may be an elite-level QB already.Defensive Player Person of the MidyearPerhaps the single weirdest thing to transpire this season has been the twists in fortune for the Denver Broncos: Peyton Manning — both architect and foundation of the league’s best and most consistent offense over the past few years — seems to be racing for the exits. Not only is he no longer the league’s best player, but he’s also struggling to put up even average production. Yet the Broncos are still 7-1, thanks to what is shaping up to be one of the league’s best defenses in years. So far, it’s on par with the 2013 Seahawks, which puts it right around 12th-best since 2006.Here’s a comparison of the Broncos’ offensive and defensive drive efficiency over the past few years: This NFL season has had its share of head-scratching quirks, but I’m not buying that it’s been as “super weird” as it seems. A lot of stuff happens in the NFL, so every year seems like a crazy year. Variance is tumultuous. In 2010, no teams started the season 4-0; this year we had four teams start 7-0. There had previously never been more than two.1In my opinion, the crazy year by which all crazy years must be measured is the 1999-2000 season featuring the Greatest Show on Turf.Where has all this weirdness left us? In a familiar place. If the playoffs started today, eight of the 12 teams that made the playoffs last year would return. There are still three unbeaten teams, but they include the defending Super Bowl champions and two playoff teams from a year ago. Cincinnati and Carolina are both surprises at 8-0, for sure, but in the past four seasons the Bengals won 40 games and made the playoffs four times, and though the Panthers have already exceeded their win total from last season, they are only one season removed from a 12-4 campaign. They also finished last year on a 5-0 spurt (counting their wild-card win) before losing in the divisional round of the playoffs. (Incidentally, Carolina’s last regular-season loss was in November 2014.) More importantly, both have quarterbacks who were already very productive. A good team with a productive QB is only a small change of fortune away from being a great team.The biggest surprise in the league has perhaps been Seattle’s relatively weak start after almost winning the Super Bowl, but the Seahawks are still 4-4 and even “control their own destiny” in their division, where they are two games behind the Arizona Cardinals, against whom they have two games scheduled.If anything, this season would seem to be suffering from a glut of predictability. The better teams keep winning, teams with leads have been holding on to them. Otherwise, quarterbacks are throwing for more and more yards, and kickers are getting better and better. Shocking!Here are my midseason awards:Most Valuable PlayerFor about a decade now, picking my MVP has been simple: It’s probably Peyton Manning, barring his absence.2And even then, I’m not entirely sure. Like, have I ever been more confident of Manning’s value than when the Colts went 2-14 without him in 2011? Has Manning always been the best? I don’t know. But my confidence in Manning’s value has always been the greatest. Sadly, it’s time to face it: Manning is finally playing like an old guy with a bunch of injuries. He may yet return to form — the ends of quarterbacks’ careers can be hard to predict — but for now, at least, there’s an opening at the top.I had to wrestle quite a bit with who deserved midseason MVP. As I’ve explained before, “MVP” and “best quarterback” are pretty much the same thing, so we can start there. QB metrics depend on so many factors that making subtle distinctions is virtually impossible. And of course QBs affect more than just passing — a good passing game can open up the running game or give a team’s defense more rest, etc.To figure out who should at least be in the conversation for the award, I started with passing stats and used ESPN’s Total Quarterback Rating (QBR). QBR isn’t perfect, but it’s fairly comprehensive — meaning it accounts for things like scrambling and yards gained from pass interference penalties3It also doesn’t treat all interceptions as being equally bad, one of the biggest sins of most QB metrics. — and it doesn’t have to be too precise for these purposes. To measure broader impact, I used expected points added (EPA) per drive on offense.4I used an ESPN version of the stat that discounts garbage time. Then I started plotting: Carson Palmer has the highest QBR in football, and Tom Brady leads the most efficient offense. Andy Dalton places second and third in each metric. Although it’s technically possible that a less productive QB is actually more valuable than these three contenders,5There is no QB metric that I’m aware of that is capable of accurately identifying great QBs on bad teams, and I doubt it’s even possible with existing data. (Although with individual player tracking, this could change.) that requires a different kind of speculation. I think it’s safe to make them our three finalists.With no clear leader among the three, I either have to make decisions — such as which is more meaningful to QB assessment: passing game efficiency or team offensive efficiency? — or I need to broaden the investigation a bit.When I looked at the historical context to see if any of these guys stands out as being better than the others, I found that all three of their teams have seen a sharp upswing in offensive efficiency (measured by EPA/drive) this season. The Patriots have improved by about 0.6 EPA per drive on offense, the Bengals by 0.7 and the Cardinals by a whopping 1.0.But these kinds of changes can mean different things to different types of squads. The Patriots’ improvement brings them back in line with where their offense was in 2011 and 2012, so the shift serves more as a confirmation of how strong their offense is. The Cardinals and Bengals are in uncharted territory for their clubs (at least in recent history), which tends to suggest either that they’ve gotten extremely lucky or that something big has changed. The difference between these two is that we have a plausible explanation for the Cardinals’ improvement: Palmer’s return from injury (he missed 10 games last year, plus the playoffs). For the Bengals, although we can look around at details, for the most part their ascension remains a mystery. Maybe it’s as simple as a quarterback with a marquee contract starting to play like a marquee quarterback. But that’s just a possible (and not very robust) explanation, whereas Arizona’s improvement has a tangible origin.Palmer is 12-2 as a starter for the Cardinals over the past two years, and the team is just 5-5 without him (and also lost to the 7-win Panthers in the playoffs). With Palmer, the Cardinals offense has scored 0.75 points above expectation per drive. Without him, this plummets to -0.11. This 0.86-point swing — per drive — is huge and can explain most of the Cardinals’ good fortune this year.Thus, on epistemic grounds alone, Palmer seems more likely than Dalton to be the best quarterback. Am I completely comfortable with that assessment? Absolutely not. But success that comes packaged with its own reason is more likely to hold up.So let’s say it’s between Palmer and Brady.Unfortunately for New England, Brady doesn’t miss enough games to have his With or Without You (WOWY) stats measured very well. However, the Patriots franchise has been relatively stable, and Brady did miss a considerable amount of playing time in 2008. If we compare the Patriots offense in that year (led by Matt Cassel) to its offenses in 2007 and 2009, we can see that it was about 0.4 expected points per drive worse off (0.6 points per drive in 2008 vs. 1.0 in surrounding years).Of course, it’s a little bit unfair that Brady gets knocked his whole career because he sat one year and his team didn’t implode. But being a cold-hearted empiricist means valuing evidence for its reliability. This is why I’m confident about the greatness of Randy Moss, Dennis Rodman and Peyton Manning more than others: Not only did each perform well, but they did so in a variety of circumstances.Normally in spots like these, I try to follow the principle that, all else being relatively equal, I should go with the better-known commodity. But “known” in this case is a bit different. We know that Brady’s offenses produce — they have for many years now — but we don’t really know who’s responsible. Thus, it’s close, but my midseason MVP goes to Carson Palmer.6I’ll also give him the “Comeback Player of the Year” award just because it’s obvious — even though he hasn’t led a ton of comebacks.Rookie of the MidyearThis was a really easy pick and required no trickery. Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota had a ridiculous debut on opening day and has been putting up good stats for a QB on such a bad team. I know, Tennessee fans, you’ve been down this road before when you saw Vince Young win the Rookie of the Year award in 2006, only to watch him fade and leave football entirely in just six years. But the gap between Mariota and Young is like the gap between Peyton Manning and Rick Mirer. Mariota has averaged 8.2 yards per pass attempt (adjusted for sacks, touchdowns and interceptions), while Young averaged just 5.2. Young’s accolades were mostly based on his 8-5 record as a starter — making Young yet another example of how things like win-loss record are completely irrelevant for evaluating rookie QBs. Mariota has struggled to find wins (he is 2-4), but that should be perfectly acceptable to Titans fans: You need your rookie QB to produce yards and touchdowns (or possibly interceptions), not wins. Granted, a big chunk of Gostkowski’s outlier-ish value on kickoffs comes from the Patriots’ successful surprise onside kick against Washington, but he also has the third-highest touchback rate and has given up only one return of more than 30 yards (and no touchdowns). Note, a good kicker is more valuable to a team with a great offense, because more field-goal attempts, extra-point attempts and kickoffs mean more opportunities to add value. If Gostkowski’s present form holds up, he may be worth multiple points to the Patriots per game. That would be great for a linebacker (or virtually any non-QB), much less a kicker. Note the “X” made by 2014-15 offense and defense: The decline of Manning has been almost perfectly offset by the arrival of Wade Phillips, defensive coordinator and my DPOM.If this defense is anywhere near as good as it has looked so far, the Broncos could be a legitimate threat, because returns to form for previously good quarterbacks aren’t uncommon. Or, put it this way: If Peyton Manning “regresses” — toward his own mean, that is — the Broncos could be a powerhouse.Special Teams Player of the MidyearLast, but certainly not least, I couldn’t let this occasion pass without recognizing the accomplishments of Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski, who has been perfect so far this season on field-goal and (longer) extra-point attempts, including several long field-goal attempts, and has been the most consistent kicker-offer as well: read more

Opinion Houston Ohio State present similar styles to Sooners

Buckeye football players waiting to run out of the tunnel and onto the field before the first game of the 2016 season against Bowling Green on Sept. 3 at Ohio Stadium. The Buckeyes won 77-10. Credit: Mason Swires | Assistant Photo EditorWhen Ohio State and Oklahoma storm the field at Gaylord Family Memorial Stadium, it will mark the first time the two programs played in 33 years. However, the Sooners had a similar look at the Buckeyes in Week 1.Oklahoma took on former OSU offensive coordinator Tom Herman and his Houston Cougars to open the season. Herman runs nearly the same offensive scheme as he did with OSU, so the Sooners should be very familiar with the offensive attack of the Buckeyes.Houston’s 33-23 victory and offensive success might appear to foreshadow success for OSU’s offense, but it also means that the Oklahoma defense will be better prepared for what the Buckeyes may throw at them. The style of Cougars’ quarterback Greg Ward Jr. and OSU redshirt junior quarterback J.T. Barrett draw similarities in the areas that had Oklahoma’s defense discombobulated.While it might seem like Oklahoma has the best insight prior to the game due to its game against Houston, it would be foolish to forget about the masterful preparation skills of coach Urban Meyer. On Sunday, Meyer called his former colleague Herman.“Yeah. We did talk to Tom. Just got their thoughts on personnel,” Meyer said at Monday’s press conference. “It was more about personnel because they have a couple of new players as well in the back end of their defense, and what’s their thoughts on the defensive line.”The Buckeyes and the Sooners do not have an extensive history, but these are two of the most storied programs in college football history. In early August, the Associated Press released its top 25 college football teams of all time, with OSU and Oklahoma ranked No. 1 and No. 2 respectively on that list.The offense of Houston has had more success statistically than OSU, racking up 1,427 yards as compared to OSU’s 1,193. So far, the Cougars have leaned on their run game to put points on the board, while OSU has enjoyed a balanced scoring attack from the air and on the ground.While both teams have dynamic coach-quarterback duos, each team is playing for a different reason. Oklahoma needs to win to regain momentum for the postseason, while the Buckeyes are looking to remain seated in the top four.As the game draws near, there is potential for the matchup to be an instant classic read more

Badgered again Just like in football Wisconsin ends Buckeyes unbeaten streak

With all coach Thad Matta had accomplished at Ohio State, he had never won at Wisconsin’s Kohl Center as the Buckeyes’ coach. Saturday, OSU arrived in Madison undefeated and No. 1 in the country to give the coach, perhaps, his best chance yet. But alas, a new year produced the same result. No. 14 Wisconsin (19-5, 9-3 Big Ten) handed OSU (24-1, 11-1 Big Ten) its first loss of the season Saturday, 71-67. Junior guard Jordan Taylor led all scorers with 27 points, 21 of which came in the second half, on 8-for-13 shooting for the Badgers. As expected, the Badgers came out at the slow pace that so many teams have implemented against the Buckeyes this year. As they played exclusively in the halfcourt, Wisconsin was able to open up an early lead. However, when freshman point guard Aaron Craft entered the game for the Buckeyes, the Badger offense quickly changed from methodical to simply stagnant. As Craft stifled Taylor, Wisconsin had a stretch in the first half in which it went more than six minutes without making a field goal. After junior guard William Buford tied the game at 26 with a minute to go, a basket from fifth-year senior forward David Lighty gave the Buckeyes their first lead of the game, 28-26, at halftime. The Badgers quickly tied the game at 28 to start the second half, but the next several minutes were all OSU. The Buckeyes went on a 21-4 run that lasted more than six minutes as they opened up a 47-32 lead with 13:30 to go. Wisconsin, however, wasn’t going away. Taylor scored eight unanswered points for the Badgers and a pair of free throws from sophomore forward Mike Bruesewitz cut the lead to five. Taylor scored again on the next possession, and a 3-pointer from freshman guard Josh Gasser completed a 15-0 Wisconsin run and tied the game, 47-47. With the game tied, 55-55, and just more than six minutes remaining, a basket from senior forward Keaton Nankivil gave the Badgers their first lead since the first half. Another 3-pointer and a pair of free throws from Taylor put Wisconsin up seven with just more than four minutes to go. OSU cut the lead to two with less than a minute to go, but a Bruesewitz 3-pointer and a turnover from Craft on the ensuing possession put the game out of reach. Buford led the Buckeyes with 21 points, and forward Jared Sullinger’s 19 points and 12 rebounds gave the freshman his 12th double-double of the season. The Buckeyes play again at 9 p.m. Tuesday at home against Michigan State. read more

Texas Appeals Court Overturns Mans 1998 Murder Conviction

first_imgTwitter via @AURNonlineThe highest criminal court in Texas has overturned the murder conviction of a man who spent 19 years in prison for the stabbing death of a friend.The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on Wednesday overturned the conviction of 44-year-old John Earl Nolley.Nolley was freed in 2016 after a witness admitted he lied and a bloody palm print at the crime scene was linked to another person.Nolley had been sentenced in 1998 to life in prison after being convicted of murder in the slaying of Sharon McLane in Bedford, northeast of Fort Worth.The witness who lied was a jailhouse informant and the case contributed to changes in state law that placed more controls on testimony provided by informants Sharelast_img read more

Flies eyes could enhance robot vision

first_img 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: Flies’ eyes could enhance robot vision (2008, May 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-05-flies-eyes-robot-vision.html Researchers from the Naval Air Warfare Center in China Lake, California, and the University of Wyoming have developed a fiber optic sensor inspired by the compound eye of the common housefly, Musca domestica. One of the biggest advantages of the design is that it can quickly locate edges and boundaries of images. Machines such as unmanned vehicles, guided missiles, and high-speed industrial inspection robots might take advantage of this ability to locate tiny, moving objects with high precision.In a recent issue of Bioinspiration & Biomimetics, researchers D. Riley, et al., describe how flies’ vision systems are uniquely geared toward locating small objects with high precision. In fact, flies possess a visual precision beyond the resolution limit – a property called hyperacuity. This feature is actually common to many animals, including humans.“The fly has significant advantages with respect to tracking,” the researchers told PhysOrg.com. “As a system, the fly has very quick reaction times. … They can react and track much better than untrained humans; however I would question that the quality of the rest of their vision is even comparable.” They added that, overall, insect vision (and sensor technology inspired by it) is still far inferior to human vision, and probably always will be.The researchers explained that the more interesting component of the fly’s vision system is that the field of view of each photoreceptor in a fly’s eye overlaps with those next to it, with up to 90% overlap. Each eye contains about 3,000 ommatidia – the major structural unit of the eye – and each ommatidium contains eight photoreceptors. The photoreceptors’ main function is to convert light into ionic current, which then goes to the fly’s processing system(s).Unlike conventional image processing systems which are often digital, the fly’s processing system is analog. Digital systems receive data pixel by pixel, and generally require time-consuming, computationally expensive processing. The analog system helps the fly extract edge information much more quickly, and also enables parallel processing. Both these features contribute to the fly’s highly accurate, high-speed vision system. The researchers designed their sensor to mimic the fly’s overlapping photoreceptors and analog, parallel processing system. The sensor consists of a 1-mm-diameter ball lens that focuses light onto an array of photodetectors, where the field of view overlaps by about 70%. In experiments, the sensor could locate a 1-mm-wide string as the string moved across the field of vision at distances up to 200 mm from the lens, with minimal error. Such a high-res vision system could have applications in a variety of medical, commercial, industrial, and defense areas. The researchers are currently fabricating a sensor that consists of seven ommatidia with seven photoreceptors, and hope to extend the design in scale and accuracy.“We envision this sensor as a supplement to more traditional imaging sensors for most applications, and not as a replacement,” they explain. “Just as Musca domestica has both two compound eyes and a very simple camera eye, many computer and robot vision tasks can benefit from both types of sensors.”More information: Riley, D T; Harmann, W M; Barrett, S F; and Wright, C H G. “Musca domestica inspired machine vision sensor with hyperacuity.” Bioinspiration & Biomimetics. 3 (2008) 026003 (13pp).Copyright 2008 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Explore further Researchers have designed a sensor inspired by flies’ compound eyes, which is capable of quickly locating the edges of objects. Image credit: D. Fischer. Robots with flies’ eyes could take advantage of the insect’s vision system to better locate the edges and boundaries of objects. This ability could help robots perform a variety of tasks more quickly and accurately than if they were using traditional sensors. Simple ‘smart’ glass reveals the future of artificial visionlast_img read more

Shower power

first_imgA shower is a must after any kind of physical work or workout as it cleans the body. But did you know that it also helps reduce stress and in losing weight.A post-workout shower also helps in enhancing recovery and immunity, reports femalefirst.co.uk.Hygiene – First and foremost, a post workout shower is essential in terms of hygiene. The sweat that you produce whilst exercising might be a sign of a good session, but people would prefer to hear about it rather than smell it.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Showering is especially important if you play sports where you might have contact with another person. For swimmers, this is equally important as the chlorine in swimming pools will damage your hair and skin if you simply towel off after getting out.Recovery – Shower can help aid recovery after a hard session. Aching muscles the day after a hard exercising session, known as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), can be prevented by having an ice-cold shower and holding the showerhead directly over the muscles you’ve been working.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixElite athletes will use an ice-bath, but putting your shower on the coldest setting is a quicker and easier alternative. If you exercise daily or more than once a day this is especially important as you can start your next session without being impeded by DOMS, allowing you to maintain the intensity of the previous session.If you are still feeling a little ‘tight’ in the morning, a hot shower can help to increase blood flow to the muscles allowing them to relax and ease the tension. Fat loss – If exercise is integral to healthy weight loss, so is a cold shower afterwards. To maintain your body temperature during a cold shower, your metabolism can increase by up to 550 percent of its resting level, meaning that you burn more calories just to stay warm. If a freezing cold shower is too uncomfortable, even low levels of cold can increase the energy demands of your body and increase muscle tone. Health and mood – Some sports actively encourage showering as an integral part of their training regime. The Taekwon-Do moral code for example explains that cold showers (known as naeng soo machal) can help students build pride and tenacity. As the saying goes – healthy mind, healthy body: exposure to cold water has also shown increase in the body’s supply of a powerful antioxidant called glutathione which boosts the immune system.last_img read more

Use These 24 Tools to Run Your Business From Anywhere in the

first_imgAugust 17, 2015 7 min read Nearly 23 percent of Americans worked from home in 2014, according to a recent Bureau of Labor Statistics survey. If you’re one of the lucky few that enjoys the ability to work from anywhere you like, the following tools will help keep you productive — no matter where you are:1. BasecampEven on the road, you need to connect with your staff. Basecamp allows you to manage projects, communicate with your team and stay on top of who’s assigned to what tasks. Never be out of touch, no matter where you are.Related: Top 10 Best Chatbot Platform Tools to Build Chatbots for Your Business2. BoomerangWhen you’re working abroad, your time zone may not be lined up with your employees or customers. No worries — Boomerang allows you to schedule your Gmail emails and send them out at specific times using Chrome, Firefox or Safari.3. DropboxThis tool should be a given, but I’ll say it. When you’re working abroad, you need a virtual location to safely store documents while allowing everyone access that needs it. Dropbox is that solution.4. Join.meA reliable virtual meeting and screen-sharing software is another tool you can’t do without as you run your company remotely. Join.me is intuitive and doesn’t require any downloads or subscriptions from you or your clients — a big bonus in my book.Related: 7 Ways to Make Working Remote Work Better5. Narrow.ioThis great tool allows you to grow your Twitter following quickly and easily. And that doesn’t mean fake, meaningless followers — Narrow.io delivers a targeted Twitter following and makes it effortless to engage with them.6. TrelloTracking a project visually is important — it can help lay out clearly where you are in a project and what step is next. Trello is a great tool for that. You can create tasks in various lists, drag them from one list to the next, assign them to team members and more.7. TogglLooking to track your time but tired of using pen and paper? Toggl is a great tool that helps you understand where your time is going — a must if you’re going to be productive remotely.8. SkypeThis is a well-known tool, but it’s one that’s essential for keeping communication going affordably. Sometimes you just need a voice-based or video chat. Forget high international phone rates — Skype keeps you connected no matter where you are in the world.9. Trade AbilityIf part of your business involves moving products, even if you just need to ship once, Trade Ability makes it easy. This free UPS tool helps you estimate costs and makes you aware of duty fees and international-trade restrictions. 10. EvernoteGet tired of having papers everywhere and fear you’ll lose your key documents? Me too. Evernote is a lifesaver, especially since you can easily clip notes from webpages and emails.11. FreemindFreemind lives up to its name. An amazing mind-mapping software available for free, this open-source tool allows you to plan your work graphically. It’s a great tool for visual learners.12. PayPalThis is another common tool, but it’s one that’s essential when you work abroad. No worrying about exchange rates, corrupt banks or mailing payments — just use PayPal to securely send money wherever it needs to go. You can even get a PayPal MasterCard linked to your account to make purchasing easy as well.13. InfusionsoftThis small-business email provider is an amazing solution for anyone, including those working from around the world. Infusionsoft allows you to automate huge portions of your business with customized funnels, email chains and more. It’s a huge lifesaver.Related: 16 Entrepreneurs Share 16 Tools They Cannot Live Without14. ZendeskIf part of your business involves providing customer service, you need Zendesk. This is especially true if you work remotely. Zendesk allows you to track all interactions — nothing is ever lost or hidden, no matter where you are in the world.15. Time TradeHaving others able to set up appointments with you automatically is a massive time saver. Time Trade allows clients or colleagues to see your availability and syncs automatically with Google Calendar. This makes scheduling easy when you travel and have sporadic availability.16. PingdomSo you’re running your business from a foreign country, relaxing and enjoying the sights, but who has an eye on your website? Enter Pingdom. Use it to easily keep an eye on your website and its uptime and average response time, any time.  17. Express VPNA VPN, or virtual private network, is a lifesaver when you visit certain countries. In China, where almost all social media is blocked, or Thailand or Indonesia, which also have restrictions, it’s important to have a VPN so you can visit your usual sites. Express VPN will make sure you’re set up before you travel.18. Skype NumberYou want to use Skype to keep costs down when you travel, but others need to call you as well. By setting up a Skype Number, you have a phone number you can give clients and staff that will forward directly to your Skype or cell phone. It’s a win-win.19. PreyNo matter where you travel, theft is an unfortunate possibility. With software such as Prey, you can keep your devices safe and locate them quickly. The software sends you location information, hidden camera pictures and screenshots. Hopefully you won’t need it, but if you do, it’s invaluable.20. BluehostWhen you run your company from anywhere in the world, you need really good technical support for your hosting service. When something breaks, you need someone you can contact to fix it — stat. Enter Bluehost. Reliable and affordable, you’ll be glad you chose them as your hosting service. Take it from this guy.21. LogMeInSometimes, you just need access to your desktop — a challenge when you’re thousands of miles away. LogMeIn is a program that allows you to access and control your desktop no matter where you are.  22. BufferIf you’re in a distant time zone, real-time social-media interaction will be a challenge. However, social media is essential to building your online authority. Buffer allows you to schedule social-media posts on a huge variety of platforms, allowing you to automate this task to occur at times that make sense for your audience.23. FreshBooksIf your company is big enough that you have a dedicated accountant, great! If not, consider FreshBooks. This intuitive online business-accounting program will help you track expenses, income and more, while having a variety of reports at your fingertips.24. PreziCreating great presentations on the go is very helpful for an entrepreneur, especially since you never know when, or where, you’ll meet your next client or partner. Prezi allows you to create great presentations that are cloud-based and that auto-sync across all devices when changes are made. Now your amazing presentation is ready anywhere, anytime.Bonus: InspirationSometimes you need inspiration on your journey doing business from anywhere in the world. Blogs such as Location 180, Chris Guillebeau’s blog, Nomadic Matt and Suitcase Entrepreneur can encourage and inform you and whet your appetite for new adventures.What other tools can’t you live without when working remotely? Share your recommendations in the comments section below.Related: 15 New Social-Media Templates to Save You Even More Time With Your Marketing Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Register Now » Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goalslast_img read more

VR Startup Magic Leap Wants You to Save a Seat on the

first_img Forget 3-D. VR startup Magic Leap wants to put Star Wars directly into your living room. By that, I mean characters standing next to you and interacting with you, right in your living room.Before you read on, you have to check out the video above. It’s wild.Magic Leap — which has been in stealth mode as it develops its mixed-reality products — said today that it is “joining magical forces” with Lucasfilms’ ILMxLAB. Lucasfilm, as you should recall, is the studio behind the Star Wars film series (Disney acquired Lucasfilm in 2012 for $4.05 billion).The partnership was officially announced today at the Wired Business Conference in New york City.Related: This Car-Swallowing Contraption Is Actually a Futuristic City BusAccording to its website, ILMxLAB says its goal is to “reinvent the way stories are told and experienced, connecting artists with their audiences like never before.”“We want to be a medium how to tell stories—and ultimately, maybe the medium,” Magic Leap founder Rony Abowitz told Wired.That seems pretty obvious in the video above. It’s not every day you get to Netflix and chill with C-3PO and R2-D2.Related: All You Need to Control This Wheelchair Is Your FaceIt’s also obvious that Magic Leap has come a long way since 2013, when I saw people using their technology to virtually slice and dice food playing Fruit Ninja at SXSW.Whatever is up their sleeve, may the magic, or Force, be with Magic Leap. June 16, 2016 Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience.center_img 2 min read Enroll Now for Freelast_img read more

In This Issue… Euro reverses slide in short squ

first_imgIn This Issue… * Euro reverses slide in short squeeze… * Merkel & Sarkozy meet again… * 200,000 jobs created in December * Chinese renminbi slides… And, Now, Today’s Pfennig For Your Thoughts! Another Eurozone “Meeting of the Minds”… Good day… And a Marvelous Monday to you! The first weekend of the NFL playoffs was interesting, with a couple of teams winning that weren’t expected to do so. I think, because I did play football as a youngster, that the league has gone too far the opposite direction, and defensive players no longer know what’s a legal hit and what isn’t, which allows more offense in the game, which casual football fans love… but that’s just me… being me… OK… The Jobs Jamboree on Friday proved to be a real boost for the economy and the dollar, which rallied on a “strong jobs number” for the first time in a month of Sundays. I highlight “strong jobs number” because, this is what this has come to… 200,000 jobs were created, so says the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in December, which is the strongest number of jobs created in another month of Sundays… The jobs reports have been so weak for so long now, that the media, and markets are all lathered up and calling this a “strong jobs number”… It’s stronger than previous ones, yes… The Unemployment rate dropped to 8.5%, the lowest it has been since February 2009, and marks 6 consecutive months of at least 100,000 jobs the first time that has happened since April 2006! OK… is it just me, being me that I smell a rat? Here we are in an election year, and suddenly the BLS says jobs are being created, when the weekly job cuts remain near 400,000 each and every week… 1.6 million jobs were created last year (per the BLS), so at least we’re heading in the right direction, eh? Whether the jobs are there are not. Whether they are full-time, or not. Whether they are min. wage or not. All these things don’t matter right now… the BLS has created a perception that the jobs market is rebounding… and, you are what you are perceived to be, right? Well… like I said the dollar responded favorably to the jobs report, which could be an indication that maybe, just maybe, cause we never know, fundamentals are returning to the markets… Because the dollar should rally when the jobs report is stronger than previous reports. The euro, being the offset to the dollar, was therefore weaker… The single unit is attempting to mount a rally this morning, as German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and French President, Sarkozy, are meeting, as I write, to discuss measures to rescue the euro over the next three months. Hmmm… They might want to get European Central Bank President, (ECB) Draghi, in a room, under a bright light, and attempt to get him to say “uncle” with regards to rate cuts! Because, he has cut rates at his first two meetings, and looks dead set on cutting them more! I wrote about this last week, that given rates in the Eurozone are going lower… I say that, because of Draghi… He’s no Trichet, or Duisenberg… He’s more of a Bernanke & Greenspan. So, you can expect to see Eurozone rate dropping below 1% for the first time this year… It’s sad, I know… But I can tell you that Draghi and his fellow-Euroheads, don’t care about the ECB’s credibility… And they don’t believe it will be damaged, as the markets will see the rate cuts as needed to help the Eurozone economy that appears to be heading to recession. Now… When I was a foreign bond trader, I would have looked at this and thought to myself… “this looks like a great time to be long bonds in a country that was getting ready to cut rates by at least 50 Basis Points (1/2%)”… But back then we would be talking about rates dropping from 5% to 4.5%… With rates starting from such a low point, I’m not sure there’s much to get excited about… Speaking of the ECB… the will meet this Thursday, but after all my talking about Draghi cutting rates, I don’t think he’ll cut rates at this meeting, after having cut rates at his first two meetings… To be fair and equal to different ideas… Last week I told you about 3 different analysts that called for the price of Gold to be much stronger in 2012 and beyond… So, to give you the “two-way market”, my friend, and write extraordinaire, Bill Bonner, is calling for the price of Gold to be flat in 2012… Let me explain Bill’s thoughts… He believes that the markets are going to be circling the bowl again in 2012. Bill said, “what we learned in 2011 was that when a Great Correction pinches, the dollar is the salve of choice – not Gold. When investors fear losses they turn to the dollar for protection. They will continue to do so a while longer. We’ll probably see a further correction in the Gold price… perhaps down to $1,200. Or perhaps it will stop at $1,400.” OK… so, now you have two sides to the story, and you can make your decision, balancing the two thoughts on Gold. Me? I’m not selling… And I’ll be happy to buy Gold at cheaper prices! I’ve been pretty tough on the Indian Gov’t and Central Bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), and their inability to recognize inflation and act accordingly. This resulted in economic stagnation, and with high inflation, it appeared the economy would take a deep dive into recession… This is the reason the Indian rupee has been one of the worst performing currencies around in the past year. But… I read a good story in the Economist that talks about how the Indian economic miracle is not over… Well, I was all eye and ears for this, since I had written India off… Indian economic growth is thought to grow at 7% this year, and will pick up from there… The savings rate continues to rise, which allows more investment, and that should be enough to keep the capital expenditure above 30% of GDP, which is quite good… Does this mean the rupee will rebound? I think there are a lot of variables here… The Eurozone… The U.S. and China… If all’s well in those three corners of the world, the rupee should be able to mount a rally. Speaking of China… The Chinese renminbi has been sliding weaker in the past week, which is something we don’t see a lot of, but it is happening, right here, right now… I think the Chinese Gov’t is very fearful of a slowdown from the Eurozone, and a no-pick up of demand from the U.S. which would be a shot to both sides of the Chinese bow… So, the Chinese Gov’t is lowing interest rates, increasing money supply, and allowing the renminbi to get weaker, in hopes of all these things helping to offset the problems in the Eurozone and U.S. How much weaker will they allow it get? Good question, Chuck, man you do come up with some good questions, every now and then, how do you do it? Well… I get lucky! HA! Seriously though… that is a good question, and one to not take so lightly, Chuck! Well, I can’t put a number or percentage on it, but it could be significant, and then… it might just be a tempest in a teacup… I’m thinking, that it might be the latter of the two… OK… back to the euro for a minute… the single unit fell to 1.2666 overnight, but it is being reported that the market got too short the euro, and a “short squeeze” was on, thus allowing the euro to rebound to 1.2750, which is where it is right now… Elsewhere… Australian Retail Sales for November were flat, which was a disappointing result, and pushed the Aussie dollar (A$) weaker this morning. Canadian Consumer Confidence rose in the 4th QTR (the index rose to 107.4 from 105.1 the previous quarter) I keep reporting strong data from Canada, and the Bank of Canada (BOC) continues to sit on its hands… Maybe the stronger than expected U.S. jobs report will give the BOC reason to get off their hands… But probably not… Then there was this… Well, the BLS doesn’t give us a breakdown of the jobs created, so there are private companies that do that… And Adivsorone.com reported one such company. ITG Investment Research … their chief economist, Steve Blitz, said, “The good news is that employment is up. The bad news is that the higher paying jobs have yet to return.” Blitz pointed out that the average hourly earnings were unchanged, and that 20% of the increase in private payrolls was for messengers and couriers. Net hires at restaurants and retailers (Christmas ) and the aforementioned messengers made up 44% of the jobs added in December. Chuck again… Yes, this is exactly what I thought would be the case… As I’ve always told you, and long time readers will have grown tired hearing this… The Jobs Jamboree is just a number… to get the real story… look to the Average hourly earnings and the Average Work week hours… I thought on Friday that something didn’t look right, and there it was right there… 200,000 jobs created, according to the BLS, and no change in the average hourly earnings? Tells you a lot! To recap… sorry, forgot the recap on Friday… The recap today, is that the Jobs Jamboree printed stronger than expected at 200,000, jobs created in December, and the dollar rallied on the data! This was the first time the dollar had rallied on a stronger jobs report in some time, and could indicate that we are returning to assets trading on fundamentals! The Chinese renminbi has taken a ride on the slippery slope of weakness this past week… One has to wonder if the Chinese are willing to absorb the critics of a weaker renminbi… The ECB meets this week, and while rates are going to go lower in the Eurozone in 2012, they won’t at this meeting, or so Chuck thinks… Currencies today 1/9/12… American Style A$ $1.0230, kiwi .7860, C$ .9725, euro 1.2770, sterling 1.5450, Swiss $1.0510, … European Style: rand 8.1415, krone 6.00, SEK 6.9215, forint 245.55, zloty 3.5105, koruna 20.2350, RUB 31.89, yen 76.75, sing 1.2950, HKD 7.7650, INR 52.51, China 6.3144, pesos 13.71, BRL 1.85, Dollar Index 81.09, Oil $101.21, 10-year 1.97%, Silver $28.95, and Gold… $1,620.65… That’s it for today… It will be a short week for yours truly, as I head out of town on Thursday, and return next week. I’ll miss my oldest son, Andrew’s birthday on Thursday, so Happy Birthday, son… Andrew’s lovely bride, Rachel had a surprise birthday party for Andrew Saturday night… I can’t believe he’s 30! Where did the years go? It seems like a year or two ago, that I dropped him off at the University of Missouri! Youngest son, Alex, went 2 & 2 in his wrestling tournament this past weekend. I just saw a story title go across the screen that said, “Sales of Super Yachts Increase”… Hmmm… yes my order for one hasn’t come in yet! HA! I hope you have a Marvelous Monday and a Wonderful Week… Chuck Butler President EverBank World Markets 1-800-926-4922 1-314-647-3837 www.everbank.comlast_img read more

The dollar index closed at 8376 in lateafternoon

first_img The dollar index closed at 83.76 in late-afternoon trading in New York on Monday…and then traded more or less sideways until 2:00 p.m. Hong Kong time…and the subsequent rally peaked out at 84.20 about 10:20 a.m. in New York.  Then, in less than three hours, the index fell to its low of 83.70 at precisely 1:00 p.m. EDT…giving up all of its earlier gains…and a few basis points more.  The index closed at 83.76…unchanged on the day. The gold price fell $40 as the dollar index rose 41 points between 2:00 p.m. in Hong Kong…and 10:20 a.m. in New York…but when the dollar index declined 52 basis points during the following two and half hours, the gold price only rose by about $15. I have the usual number of stories for a mid-week column…but not too many ones related to precious metals…and a couple of them are must reads. What is your “fair Share” of what someone else has worked for? – Thomas Sowell I was hoping for better price action than we got yesterday, considering the impressive key reversals all four precious metals painted.  But that was not to be…and gold’s attempt to break above the $1,400 spot price mark in late afternoon trading in Hong Kong got smacked immediately.  But the moves we actually got in all four precious metals were out of all proportion to the antics of the dollar index…a fact that I wrote about further up. The only ‘good’ thing about yesterday’s price action was the fact that, if all the data is reported in a timely manner, this Friday’s Commitment of Traders Report should be something to see, as yesterday at the close of Comex trading was the cut-off for it. As Ted pointed out in his commentary above…and as last COT Report showed…the precious metals are configured for a major move higher.  It only remains to be seen if JPMorgan et al will show up as long sellers/short sellers of last resort as prices rise through their critical moving averages. All we can do is wait it out. At the moment, gold and silver prices are miles below their current 20-day moving averages…the first moving average of any consequence [according to Ted] as far as the mega-short technical funds are concerned.  But sooner or later it will be pierced, either by price action or the passage of time, and then the technical funds who use this average as a target, will start heading for the exits. Here are the 6-month charts for both gold and silver with their respective 20 and 50-day moving averages… (Click on image to enlarge) Gold chopped around the $1,375 spot mark through most of Far East trading on their Wednesday, but about ten minutes before London opened, the gold price popped for about ten bucks.  It was the same story in silver, but it only moved about 15 cents during that same period.  As I write this paragraph, London has been open ten minutes, so we’ll see what happens once the trading day has a couple of hours under its belt. Volumes are pretty light…at least compared to the volumes we’ve seen lately at this time of day.  Most of it is still of the HFT variety…but there’s not a lot of it. The dollar index is up about 7 basis points. And as I hit the ‘send’ button at 4:30 a.m. Eastern time, nothing much has changed since I wrote the above paragraph.  Gold is up about twelve bucks…and silver is up two bits.  The dollar index is flat…and volumes, although understandably higher now, are still pretty light all things considered. I haven’t the foggiest idea how the rest of the trading day will turn out, but we’re set up for a rally of biblical proportions if “da boyz” don’t show up…and it’s just a matter of when, not if, that rally begins.  Then, in very short order, we’ll find what their intentions are. See you on Thursday. The gold shares gapped down almost 4 percent at the open…hit their low at 10:00 a.m. EDT when gold hit its low…and then rallied until around 1:00 p.m. in New York, before selling off into the close as gold did the same.  The HUI finished down 2.75%. (Click on image to enlarge) The CME’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 18 gold and 10 silver contracts were posted for delivery tomorrow within the Comex-approved depositories.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here. GLD had another withdrawal yesterday. This time it was 270,710 troy ounces…and as of 11:38 p.m. last night, there were no reported changes in SLV. The U.S. Mint had another sales report yesterday.  They sold 5,000 ounces of gold eagles…1,500 one-ounce 24K gold buffaloes…and 217,500 silver eagles. Over at the Comex-approved depositories, there was big movement in silver inventories on Monday.  They received 968,451 troy ounces…and shipped 1,119,034 troy ounces out the door.  The link to that activity is here. In gold on Monday, these depositories didn’t receive any, but shipped 32,033 troy ounces out the door…and the link to that activity is here. Here is today’s “cute quota”… The silver chart looked similar…and Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down 2.37%. Silver was under selling pressure right from the New York open on Monday evening…and was down about 50 cents by 9:00 a.m. Hong Kong time.  It rallied until around 2:00 p.m…and then, like gold, went into a slow decline, with the low also at the London p.m. gold fix…10:00 a.m. EDT in New York. And also, like gold, rallied until noon before selling off a bit into the close.  The noon low, according to Kitco, printed $22.00 spot. Silver closed at $22.43 spot…down 49 cents on the day.  Gross volume was a chunky 63,000 contracts.center_img The platinum and palladium charts looked mostly similar. (Click on image to enlarge) Sponsor Advertisement As last COT Report showed, the precious metals are configured for a major move higher After an exciting day on Monday, trading in the Far East was very quiet…and the attempt to break through the $1,400 spot mark around 1:30 p.m. Hong Kong time was the start of a long, slow sell-off that ended at the London p.m. gold fix.  The low tick at that point was, according to Kitco…$1,359.00 spot. The subsequent rally lasted until noon in New York…and that was it for the day. Gold closed at $1,376.00 spot…down $24.10 from Monday.  Net volume was very heavy…around 195,000 contracts. Drilling Intersects 102 Meters of 1.97 gpt Gold at Columbus Gold’s Paul Isnard Gold Project; Drilling Confirms Depth Extension of Gold Mineralization Columbus Gold Corporation (CGT: TSX-V) (“Columbus Gold”) is pleased to announce results of the initial five (5) core drill holes at its Paul Isnard gold project in French Guiana. The holes confirm depth extension of gold mineralization below shallow holes drilled on the 43-101 compliant 1.9 million ounce Montagne d’Or inferred gold deposit at Paul Isnard in the 1990’s and support the current program of resource expansion through offsetting open-ended gold mineralization indicated by the earlier holes. Robert Giustra, CEO of Columbus Gold, commented: “These drill results validate Columbus Gold’s approach to adding ounces with a lower-risk drilling program designed to infill and to extend the mineralized zones to 200 m vertical depth from surface; a depth amenable to open pit mining.”  Fourteen (14) holes have been completed (assays pending) by Columbus Gold in the current program and drilling is progressing at the rate of about 3,000 meters per month with one drill-rig on a 24 hour basis. Columbus Gold plans to accelerate the current program by engaging a second drill-rig as soon as one can be obtained.  Please visit our website for more information about the project.last_img read more

Disabled people could be at risk of violence and

first_imgDisabled people could be at risk of violence, and even “killings and euthanasia”, because of their portrayal by the UK government and media as “parasites” who live on benefits, according to unpublished comments by the chair of a UN committee.Theresia Degener, who chairs the UN committee on the rights of persons with disabilities, warns in the interview that such portrayals of disabled people are “very, very dangerous”.Her comments are even more critical and highly-charged than those she and her committee colleagues made during last month’s two-day public examination in Geneva of the UK’s progress on implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.Degener herself had told the UK government’s delegation that its cuts to social security and other support for disabled people had caused “a human catastrophe”, comments that were repeated by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn in yesterday’s prime minister’s questions (see separate story).But her comments in the interview with a BBC journalist – which are believed to have not been broadcast – go even further.Degener (pictured) says that cuts to social security have been so severe that they have become “life threatening to many disabled people”, and she then talks about the impact of the austerity cuts on public attitudes to disabled people.She says in the interview that “disabled people being portrayed as parasites, living on social benefits, and welfare and the taxes of other people” was “very, very dangerous”.She says that such attitudes “will later on lead to violence against disabled people, we know it, if not to killings and euthanasia”.She stressed later to Disability News Service (DNS) that she was not comparing the situation in the UK to the propaganda used in Nazi Germany, where disabled people were often referred to by the state as “useless eaters” who led “burdensome lives” as a justification for the killing of as many as 275,000 disabled people by doctors.She told DNS: “I did not draw a comparison with Nazi Germany in the 1930s/40s because the current UK situation is in no way comparable to Nazi Germany.“I meant to alert more generally to the danger of dividing disabled people from the general population by ‘othering’ them as ‘parasites’.“There have been killings (disguised as mercy killings) based on such irrational thinking.”She says in the BBC interview: “I am not saying that [this violence] is happening right now in the UK, but this is why governments have to stop this kind of attitude.”Degener, who herself is German and a professor of law and disability studies, says that “although we would never as a human rights treaty body favour censorship, we think that media and the government have some responsibility in this regard”.Her comments follow concerns raised in the committee’s report about “the persisting occurring incidents of negative attitudes, stereotypes and prejudice against persons with disabilities… as well as concerning their social protection entitlements”.Her colleague Coomaravel Pyaneandee, a vice-chair of the committee, had said during the public examination that disabled people in the UK were “most concerned” about negative attitudes towards disabled people on benefits which were “fuelled” by the media and “government representatives”.Disabled activists and opposition politicians have repeatedly raised concerns that ministers or civil servants have briefed newspapers in a way that encourages them to report inaccurate and misleading articles, with headlines such as “75 per cent of incapacity claimants are fit to work” and “Disabled benefit? Just fill in a form”.In 2012, a report by Disability Rights UK found that disabled people increasingly believed that coverage of welfare reform and other disability issues in national newspapers was helping to fuel hate crime, with many of the respondents blaming rising hostility towards them on “government spin and distortion” and “rhetoric from the government about scroungers and benefit cheats”.The previous year, a letter from the Disability Benefits Consortium to Maria Miller, then the minister for disabled people, accused the government of causing disabled people “significant alarm” by releasing information about disability living allowance (DLA) that led to “misleading” media coverage.The letter warned her of the government’s obligations under the Equality Act not to “generate stigma, persecution or harassment of disabled people requiring support from the welfare system”.Degener also says in the BBC interview that, compared to other countries with “less economic power” and less advanced equality and discrimination legislation, the UK’s austerity policy was “less human rights oriented”, so that “UK appears to be a strong country when it comes to equal rights but a very, very weak country with relation to economic, social and culture rights”.She says the UK’s record on disability rights “is going backwards in a pace and to an amount that it worries us a lot” and that the evidence in front of the committee was “overwhelming”.Degener was not available this week to expand on her remarks, but she has given permission for them to be used by DNS.She made the comments in an interview recorded for BBC News on 31 August, following the publication of the committee’s “concluding observation” on the UK.The comments were recorded by the UN because the interview took place at the end of a press conference.BBC News has given DNS permission to quote from the interview, which appears to have been intended for its News at Ten programme but was not broadcast.A DWP spokeswoman did not respond directly to Degener’s comments, but repeated the government’s previous response to the committee’s concluding observations.She said: “We’re disappointed that this report does not accurately reflect the evidence we gave to the UN, and fails to recognise all the progress we’ve made to empower disabled people in all aspects of their lives.“We spend over £50 billion a year to support disabled people and those with health conditions – more than ever before, and the second highest in the G7*.“We’re committed to furthering rights and opportunities for all disabled people, which is why it is encouraging that almost 600,000 disabled people have moved into work in the UK over the last four years.“We’re also a recognised world leader in disability rights and equality, which is why we supported the development of the UN convention.”She said the UK has “some of the strongest equalities legislation in the world, including the Equality Act 2010, and we will continue to make sure that these rights are protected”.She added: “This government believes that a disability or health condition should not dictate the path a person is able to take in life – or in the workplace.“This forms the foundation of our reforms to help disabled people realise their potential in the labour market and wider society.”She also directed DNS to the concluding remarks of Karen Jochelson, who heads the Office for Disability Issues and led the UK delegation at the public examination in Geneva, and which can be watched here from 3:04:41.*The other G7 countries are the USA, Japan, France, Germany, Italy and Canadalast_img read more

ST HELENS fullback Paul Wellens will miss the Goo

first_imgST HELENS full-back Paul Wellens will miss the Good Friday derby against Wigan Warriors after failing in his appeal against the one-match ban imposed by the RFL Disciplinary Committee for a Grade B dangerous throw on Lee Briers of Warrington Wolves in a Stobart Super League fixture last week.Wellens submitted a letter of reference from Lee Briers in his appeal, which was heard this afternoon, but the panel ruled that Wellens was responsible for putting his opponent in a dangerous position in the seventh-minute tackle.last_img read more

Digital TV Startup Aereo May Wind Up in the Supreme Court

first_img Brian Patrick Eha Legal arguments against Aereo, a tech startup that makes it possible for consumers to watch unauthorized digital streams of broadcast programming, may reach the U.S. Supreme Court. This move comes after lower courts gave Aereo the green light to continue allowing this type of streaming, even after broadcasters cried foul. Broadcasters plan to petition the nation’s highest court sometime in the next few days, Variety reports.Founded in 2011, New York City-based Aereo launched its service in March of last year, aiming to change the way people access and watch TV programming. Aereo uses internet-connected antennas to capture broadcast signals and make them available to paying users on any type of device.For months now, big broadcasters — including NBC Universal, ABC and Fox — have been trying to shut Aereo down, claiming that it is stealing and reselling their programming. Aereo doesn’t pay broadcasters for their content. It argues its antennas are legally akin to the ones people already use to watch TV in their own homes.To date, it seems that courts are siding with the startup. In July 2012, a New York federal judge refused to grant an injunction to stop Aereo from operating. And the Second Circuit Court of Appeals denied broadcasters’ request to reconsider the decision of the lower court.Related: TV Startup Aereo Countersues Big BroadcasterToday, a judge in Boston issued a similar ruling in favor of Aereo. “Today’s decision makes clear that there is no reason that consumers should be limited to 1950s technology to access over-the-air broadcast television,” said Chet Kanojia, Aereo’s founder and chief executive, in a statement.In Washington and Los Angeles, however, district court judges found in favor of broadcasters in cases brought against Film On X, a startup similar to Aereo. Film On X appealed the lower court’s decision, but it remains to be seen how the appellate court for the Ninth Circuit will decide. A finding that conflicts with the Second Circuit might persuade the Supreme Court to settle the matter.On the heels of these legal developments comes the announcement today that Aereo will release its first Android app later this month. Currently the service is not available for Android users, though it is accessible via the web on desktop computers and laptops.”At Aereo, we believe consumers should have more choice and control over how they watch television and a big part of that is expanding the universe of devices that they can use to access Aereo’s technology,” Kanojia said in a news release.Until now, Kanojia said, the company had focused on expanding its geographical reach. So far, Aereo’s service is available in seven U.S. cities, including New York, Miami, Atlanta and Dallas.Related: 3 Tips for Doing Deals With Big Companies 3 min read Add to Queue Next Article –shares October 10, 2013 Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Register Now » Digital TV Startup Aereo May Wind Up in the Supreme Court Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Technology Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.last_img read more

War against Malaria plateaued worldwide says latest report

first_imgBy Dr. Ananya Mandal, MDNov 20 2018Malaria is a deadly mosquito borne parasitic disease that kills thousands worldwide. Over the past few decades the war against malaria has managed to stop deaths globally. However the latest WHO malaria report 2018 says that the efforts against malaria need to be renewed to reduce the number of deaths due to this disease. WHO has joined hands with other organizations to raise the public awareness, increase funding, and strengthen prevention and treatment of malaria. The report in 2017 also stated that around 219 million cases of malaria were detected. The year before, the number of cases were 217 million. The reduction in the number of cases was noted between 2010 (239 million) and 2015 (214 million cases). Since 2016 the numbers seem to have stagnated and the efforts need to be renewed to further reduce the numbers says the WHO.Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General in a statement says, “Nobody should die from malaria. But the world faces a new reality: as progress stagnates, we are at risk of squandering years of toil, investment and success in reducing the number of people suffering from the disease. We recognise we have to do something different – now. So today we are launching a country-focused and -led plan to take comprehensive action against malaria by making our work more effective where it counts most – at local level.” Dr Kesete Admasu, CEO of the RBM Partnership with WHO says, “There is no standing still with malaria. The latest World malaria report shows that further progress is not inevitable and that business as usual is no longer an option. The new country-led response will jumpstart aggressive new malaria control efforts in the highest burden countries and will be crucial to get back on track with fighting one of the most pressing health challenges we face.”Freedom from malaria was achieved in Paraguay says the 2018 report. Paraguay thus becomes the first American nation in 45 years to achieve this status. Malaria free certification is pending at three other countries – Algeria, Argentina and Uzbekistan. At present the funds required to meet the malaria freedom goals is to the tune of US$6.6 billion annually by 2020. The present amounts available are half of this say the experts.Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa has said in a statement, “When countries prioritize action on malaria, we see the results in lives saved and cases reduced. WHO and global malaria control partners will continue striving to help governments, especially those with the highest burden, scale up the response to malaria.” Amalgamating efforts from nations and worldwide political attention to reduce deaths due to malaria Strategic use of the information that could have a greater impact Malaria endemic countries to be provided with special global guidance, aid and policies for fighting malaria Coordination between countries in terms of response against malaria. 3d illustration of blood cells, plasmodium causing malaria illness. Image Credit: Christoph Burgstedt / Shutterstock What is Malaria? Malaria Causes Malaria Mechanism Malaria Diagnosis Malaria Prevention Malaria Treatment Malaria History Malaria Society And Culture Malaria Symptoms The report adds that in 2017 70 percent of all malaria cases (151 million cases) as well as around 274000 deaths were seen in 11 countries of which 10 were from Africa. The countries worst affected were Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ghana, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Uganda and United Republic of Tanzania in Africa and India from Asia. The numbers had risen by 3.5 million in these African countries from 2016 and had reduced only in India by 24 percent.There has been a notable increase in use of insecticide treated bed nets to prevent mosquito bites says the report. The situation is worse in many parts of Africa where insecticide spraying is also absent. To change the efforts and strengthen them the WHO has launched the “High burden to high impact” response plan that would target countries that are worst hit.According to the WHO call at the World Health Assembly in May 2018, the new efforts against malaria would have a four pronged approach –last_img read more

Arc Bio launches unique NGSbased metagenomics platform for pathogen detection

first_imgWe performed a retrospective study of the Galileo™ Pathogen Solution NGS pipeline for the detection and quantitation of DNA viruses in my lab using residual samples from transplant patients. The Galileo test has shown to be a promising new technology with excellent proof of principle analytical data that has the potential to revolutionize many areas of clinical microbiology.”Benjamin Pinsky, MD, PhD, Medical Director, Clinical Virology, Stanford Healthcare & Stanford Children’s Health Source:https://www.arcbio.com/ Galileo™ Pathogen Solution consists of a software component, Galileo™ Analytics, and Sample Preparation reagents and provides healthcare professionals with a research tool that gives them the power to perform sophisticated analyses without requiring bioinformatics expertise. Galileo™ Pathogen Solution can quickly and efficiently provide quality control data from an NGS run and detect and quantify pathogens from unbiased metagenomic sequencing data, yielding a viral load for calibrated pathogens and a quantitative metric for all others.Galileo™ Analytics is a cloud-based proprietary software that provides quick and reliable results, an intuitive user interface that does not require bioinformatics expertise, and detailed, actionable reports. Just as GalileoTM AMR was launched to provide a solution for the growing epidemic of antimicrobial resistance, Galileo™ Pathogen Solution – Transplant has been designed to address the need for more reliable and comprehensive viral detection and quantification.Related StoriesFACS-based CRISPR screening shows how Chlamydia bacterium invades host cellsStudy shows how bacteria can destroy host cells from the insideApplication of machine learning methods to healthcare outcomes researchThe number of transplants in the U.S. is growing at approximately 4 percent yearly, and of the more than 57,000 transplants each year about 30 percent of all recipients will get a viral infection. The average cost to treat a viral infection from a donor organ or reactivation post-transplant per patient is about $400,000.Arc Bio’s goal is to provide products that will help provide better care and reduce these costs.Arc Bio, founded by leading geneticists and bioinformaticians, plans to continue to launch a full suite of NGS-based metagenomics research solutions — under its GalileoTM product line – that will provide improved tools for fast, accurate and cost-effective analyses in the field of infectious diseases.center_img Apr 12 2019Arc Bio – which debuted last year with its GalileoTM AMR antimicrobial resistance detection software – today revealed the second offering in its GalileoTM product line: a comprehensive next-generation sequencing (NGS) test to provide data to aid in the monitoring of post-transplant patients, who are at high risk for infection or reactivation of potentially fatal viral infections.The company revealed its launch plans this week at the 29th European Congress of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases in Amsterdam. Galileo™ Pathogen Solution – Transplant will officially launch at the ASM Clinical Virology Symposium in May and will initially be made available as a Research Use Only test that laboratories can purchase and validate as a Laboratory Developed Test.With the current standard of real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) technology, only one virus can be detected per test, despite there being hundreds of different viral strains that can infect transplant patients.Galileo™ Pathogen Solution is one comprehensive test able to detect common viral infections as well as rarer ones – including Cytomegalovirus (CMV), Epstein–Barr virus (EBV), BK virus (BKV) and human adenovirus (hADv) –  and provide a quantitative signal. Galileo™ Pathogen Solution offers the ability to detect antiviral resistance genes, coupled with simultaneous quantitative detection of these viruses comprised of greater than 350 curated viral strains. We feel fortunate to have the opportunity to provide cutting edge tools that will help combat the global challenges of infectious disease and antibiotic resistance. With this and future additions to our GalileoTM product line, our aim is to provide innovative tools that can be used to implement NGS detection that aid in diagnostic management.”Arc Bio Chief Executive Officer Dr. Todd Dickinson, a Founding Scientist of Illuminalast_img read more