Minister Calls for Strengthening of Local Government Regime in Region

first_img Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, is calling for the strengthening of the local government regime in the region. While here, the Mayor will visit the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM); meeting with the Mayors of Kingston and St. Ann’s Bay, and with representatives of the Social Development Commission (SDC). Mr. McKenzie told JIS News that he is hoping that the visit to Jamaica by Mayor Glen Ram, Chairman of the Mayaro Rio Claro Regional Corporation in Trinidad and Tobago, will help to rebuild the regional local government regime. Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, is calling for the strengthening of the local government regime in the region.“There is a lack of a coordinated effort between countries in the region that actually practise local (governance). There are only a few countries that have such a system,” the Minister noted.Mr. McKenzie told JIS News that he is hoping that the visit to Jamaica by Mayor Glen Ram, Chairman of the Mayaro Rio Claro Regional Corporation in Trinidad and Tobago, will help to rebuild the regional local government regime.“We are hoping that out of this visit by Mayor Ram we can forge and develop a stronger local government fraternity in the region,” the Minister said.Mayor Ram arrived in Jamaica on August 9 for a five-day visit, as the guest of the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development, to observe the local government reform processes.While here, the Mayor will visit the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM); meeting with the Mayors of Kingston and St. Ann’s Bay, and with representatives of the Social Development Commission (SDC).For his part, Mayor Ram expressed gratitude to Mr. McKenzie and the Local Government Ministry for hosting him.He explained that the primary objective of his visit is geared towards strengthening local government practices in the region.Mayor Ram pointed out that there are many similarities between the two countries, in terms of local governance, and indicated that, currently, in Trinidad and Tobago there is an ongoing effort to strengthen the local government process, so the visit is indeedtimely. Story Highlightslast_img read more

Precautions for Possible Freezing Rain

first_imgThe Emergency Management Office and the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal advise Nova Scotians to take appropriate precautions in view of Environment Canada’s forecast of freezing rain and ice pellets today, Jan. 7. Such weather conditions can make driving treacherous and cause power outages. The departments advise Nova Scotians to monitor local weather forecasts, avoid driving if possible and make sure they have emergency supplies in their homes, or in their vehicles if driving. A home emergency kit should include: a battery operated or crank radio, a flashlight, spare batteries, non-perishable food, a manual can opener, drinking water, adequate supply of medication, first-aid kit, blankets or sleeping bags, extra clothing and footwear. Similar items are recommended for vehicle kits, along with jumper cables, warning flares, a shovel, traction sand or road salt, and a tow rope. For more information on preparing an emergency kit for your home or vehicle, go to the Emergency Management Office website at . More information on road conditions is available by dialling 511 for provincial highway conditions, or 1-888-432-3233 for local road information. In the event of power outage, people can call Nova Scotia Power’s outage information line at 1-877-428-6004.last_img read more

WilsonRaybould resignation stokes anger frustration within veterans community

first_imgOTTAWA — Jody Wilson-Raybould’s resignation from cabinet this week has stoked long-standing frustration, disappointment and anger among Canada’s veterans, who say they have been ignored and betrayed by the Trudeau government.The Liberals went out of their way during the last federal election to court former service members, as Justin Trudeau promised to improve service delivery and reinstate a lifelong disability pension for veterans after years of Conservative cuts and inaction.That pension, first introduced after the First World War, was abolished by the Conservatives with unanimous support in the House of Commons in 2006 and replaced by a suite of rehabilitation programs and financial compensation for injured soldiers.Since then, the Liberals have run through three veterans-affairs ministers in as many years — Kent Hehr, Seamus O’Regan and Wilson-Raybould — while making little headway on improving service delivery and breaking their pension promise.The government has increased some supports and benefits for veterans and unveiled its own so-called Pension for Life program that will roll out in April, but that program has been widely assessed as falling far short of Trudeau’s original pledge.“Our key concern is there’s been a betrayal of the commitment that the prime minister made in the election of 2015,” said Brian Forbes, chair of the National Council of Veterans Associations, which represents more than 60 veteran groups.“That is felt very strongly in the veterans’ community.”The Liberals have also been roundly accused of ignoring the various ministerial advisory groups and other mechanisms established after the 2015 election to solicit feedback from the veterans’ community about its needs and concerns.All of which had sowed seeds of discontent even before Wilson-Raybould was handed the veterans-affairs portfolio on Jan. 14, taking over from O’Regan in a move widely regarded as a demotion from her previous role as justice minister.Now, while parliamentarians and Canadians at large wonder about the truth surrounding Wilson-Raybould’s discussions with the prime minister’s office about SNC-Lavalin, many veterans feel they have been forgotten. Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan has added responsibility for veterans to his duties, but only temporarily.“It’s like the veterans are the last priority in this story,” said Aaron Bedard, an Afghan War veteran from B.C. who led an unsuccessful legal battle against the government to reinstate the old disability pension. “We don’t have a minister of veterans affairs anymore.”Even before Wilson-Raybould’s departure, some veterans and veterans’ groups had questioned the number of ministers who have handled the portfolio under the Liberals — and what it means about their importance to the government.Not that the trend has been unique to the Liberals; all told, there have been seven veterans-affairs ministers in the past decade, not counting Sajjan. The Conservatives had three in less than two years, leading up to the last election.That in itself creates difficulties, says Scott Maxwell, executive director of Wounded Warriors Canada, which helps former service members with mental-health injuries, because new ministers take time to find their footing.“It just makes it difficult to get the work done,” Maxwell said in an interview earlier this month, before Wilson-Raybould’s resignation. “That’s something we’ve tracked as a barrier.”Yet Wilson-Raybould was also different in that many of her predecessors were seen as up-and-comers getting promotions and looking to impress, not senior ministers getting a demotion. While she repeatedly denied that description, insisting that working for veterans was vitally important, it nonetheless stuck with some veterans.“When you’re saying you’re being demoted and you’re being sent to veterans affairs, it’s a slap in the face for us,” said Daniel Tremblay, an Afghan War veteran from Ottawa who is now struggling with back problems and post-traumatic stress.“It should be a promotion, not a demotion. That way you know the individual wants to be there and cares for us.”The Trudeau government is scrambling to contain the damage caused by Wilson-Raybould’s resignation, which followed a Globe and Mail story saying the Prime Minister’s Office had pressured her to intervene in a criminal case against SNC-Lavalin.Yet her resignation also makes a difficult task for the government even harder, as the Liberals already faced an uphill climb selling their Pension for Life program ahead of this year’s federal election.It’s difficult to assess how veterans’ concerns affect federal elections given that the community is spread across the country, but anecdotal evidence has suggested many former service members voted Liberal in 2015 — largely because of the disability-pension promise.That appears almost certain to change in October, though the question is who veterans will actually support. Bedard, who worked with the Liberals in the last election, says the Conservatives have repeatedly reached out to him and others over the past year or so.Yet others still remember the deep cuts to frontline work at Veterans Affairs Canada that were imposed by Stephen Harper’s government and the Conservatives’ refusal to reinstate the disability pension after a decade in power.That leaves open the question: Where will veterans turn in 2019?“The (veterans-affairs) file has been mismanaged for a decade or more,” said Nova Scotia veteran David MacLeod, who was forced to leave the military in 2010 for medical reasons.“Based on mismanagement alone, I will not be supporting any of the major political parties in the coming election. I support one of the smaller parties or a credible independent candidate.”— Follow @leeberthiaume on Twitter.Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Family of Quebec man imprisoned in Oman seeks Ottawas help to bring

first_imgMONTREAL — The family of a Quebec man imprisoned in Oman is asking the Canadian government to help repatriate him before he is extradited to the United Arab Emirates on fraud charges.According to his son, Andre Gauthier was imprisoned in Dubai between 2015 and 2017, and has been jailed in Oman since March, when authorities stopped him from returning to Canada during an appeal of an eight-year sentence.The 65-year-old’s son and lawyers describe him as a whistleblower who alerted authorities to irregular dealings in a gold-trading company he was involved with. They say he was blamed for the $30-million fraud after the real perpetrators left the country.They want the Canadian government to step in to stop Gauthier from being returned to Dubai, where they say he faces potential human rights violations and has little chance of a fair trial.Global Affairs Canada says consular officials are aware of the case and members of the government have met with Omani officials to discuss it.But Gauthier’s son, Alexis Gauthier, is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to get personally involved in pressuring authorities to bring his father home.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Shooting for the It Just Works Experience

Justifying Workspace Applications: Time to Up the Game Marty Parker September 10, 2019 Communication technology vendors and their value-adding partners must take the lead in defining business justifications for their collaboration and workspace applications. What does a good user experience entail? While there are different types of experiences for different types of users, some basic fundamentals are required: Technology is table stakes today. You can have the best technology in the world, but it doesn’t matter if end users aren’t using it. Today’s employees and consumers expect positive and easy experiences when they’re working at their desks or remote locations, interacting with organizations for sales or support, or communicating with colleagues and customers. They expect to have the right business communications tools to make them more productive and effective, without barriers that negatively impact their experiences. Whether for internal communications and collaboration, or interacting with customers, businesses need to focus on the user experience as much as — or even more than — the technology itself. user_interface.jpg Simplicity — whether a customer is contacting customer service or a knowledge worker is using a video collaboration tool, the communications should be simple and easy to use. For users, this means having to go through as few steps as possible to set up a video conference, share screens or documents, reach a knowledgeable contact center agent, etc.Intuitive — time is at a premium, and users should be able to start using communication and collaboration tools right away, no matter the use case. An intuitive user interface, based on task or role, is essential. While training is needed (and recommended) for advanced capabilities, users should be able to get started with basic capabilities as soon as the solution is deployed.Seamless — no one likes having to switch from one application or screen to another, as that disrupts workflow and hampers productivity; the more integrated the experience, the better.Engaging — why should business communications be dull? Communications and collaboration tools can be fun. Whether by providing emojis for collaboration tool users or gamification for contact center workers, the more engaging the experience, the more likely people will be to continue using the tools, and even get enjoyment from their jobs.Mobile-friendly — with the majority of customers and workers using mobile devices, the experience needs to support a mobile environment, utilizing the mobile devices’ native capabilities as much as possible. BCSLogo.png Videoconferencing certainly isn’t new, and there is no shortage of players in this space. But Zoom make videoconferencing easy and simple to use. The most common refrain I hear from Zoom users is “it just works.” Zoom provides the tools that provide the necessary functionality, but beyond the technology, it provides a simple and intuitive user experience. See All in Unified Communications & Collaboration » Pleasant is writing as a member of BCStrategies, an industry resource for enterprises, vendors, system integrators, and anyone interested in the growing business communications arena. A supplier of objective information on business communications, BCStrategies is supported by an alliance of leading communication industry advisors, analysts, and consultants who have worked in the various segments of the dynamic business communications market.Tags:News & Viewsuser experienceagent experienceIT tipsUnified Communications & CollaborationBCStrategiesBest PracticesCustomer ExperienceDigital WorkplaceEnterprise Connect Articles You Might Like Think about customer service — the best AI and routing technologies aren’t important if customers can’t get the information they need, if they have to wait on hold for long times, or if they have to repeat themselves when going from chat sessions to agents. Contact center agents who don’t have the right tools, or have tools that are difficult to use and require continually going from one screen or application to another, will have negative experiences — and these, in turn, will impact the quality of service they provide to customers and the overall customer experience. Disruptors “Get It” Enterprise Connect 2019 is weeks past, but the lessons learned from the sessions, speakers, and discussions will be around for years to come. While many people believe that the biggest takeaway was the role of artificial intelligence (AI), I had a different perspective (as per usual). To me, the biggest message was the role of experience. Whether its customer experience (CX), user experience (UX), employee experience (EX), or agent experience (AX), businesses realize that they need to focus on providing awesome business communication experiences in order to succeed. Most of the disruptive companies that have been so successful have one thing in common — an unrelenting focus on the customer experience. From Uber making it easy to get a ride to Amazon changing the face of retail forever, these companies understand the importance of providing a unique customer and user experience. Recently we’ve been hearing and talking about Slack and Zoom a great deal, as these companies have been disrupting the status quo and growing extremely quickly. What makes these companies so disruptive? I’d venture to say that it’s all about the positive user experience their solutions provide. Slack is also focused on the user experience, making it easy to collaborate and get work done. With tight integration to a large variety of applications and workflows, Slack provides a seamless user experience, making it easy for users to collaborate and complete tasks from within a single hub. At Slack’s recent Frontiers customer event, the audience gave a loud round of applause when the company announced the addition of emojis to use in conversations. This demonstrates how much users appreciate anything that makes the collaboration experience more fun, engaging, and enjoyable. Tips for a Good User Experience Avaya Continues Mulling Next-Step Options Beth Schultz September 12, 2019 In a brief update, company said strategic alternative review process continues, gave no indication of new expectations for wrapping it up. We’ve been talking about the user experience for a long time, but I believe we’re at a tipping point — companies are finally developing and fine-tuning their products and solutions to focus on providing truly positive experiences. The winners won’t be the vendors with the better technology or more features, but rather, the companies that enable simple, seamless, engaging experiences that keep users coming back. Tick, Tock, the Clock Is Running for Avaya Zeus Kerravala September 06, 2019 Lots of speculation surrounds Avaya’s future, but mum’s still the word on a final decision. Avaya Still on the Block, Resolution May Come Soon Beth Schultz August 14, 2019 As the company plugs away on cloud sales, CEO Jim Chirico looks to wrap up its review of strategic alternatives in the next 30 days. Mitel, Avaya Merger on Tap? Beth Schultz August 20, 2019 On the heels of word that Avaya is close to reaching acquisition deal, the focus turns to Mitel and a reported bid of $20 per share. I’ve been thrilled to hear more and more vendors focusing on the user experience in the past couple of years. In fact, Fuze’s tagline is: “Reimagining the User Experience for Unified Communications.” At Enterprise Connect, Lori Wright, general manager, Microsoft 365, began her keynote address discussing the role of employee experience and employee engagement. Vendors are finally taking note and recognizing the important role of user experience. Log in or register to post comments read more

Kitchener man dies in Brant County mud run

A Kitchener man died after collapsing while taking part in a “mud run” endurance event in Brant County, Brant County OPP said.The 63-year-old man was participating in the War Horse Warrior Challenge on Saturday when he went into distress, police said.Emergency personnel weren’t able to revive him. The man’s identity was not released.The event, a fundraiser for the Canadian Cancer Society, was held in Paris, a community of about 12,000 located 15 kilometres northwest of Brantford.Officers stayed on the scene for several hours to investigate the incident and work with organizers, police said.Sharie Mulkewich, director of the Central West Ontario Region for the Canadian Cancer Society, said organizers of the challenge closed the course and suspended the remainder of the event after the man collapsed.“We are deeply saddened by this incident and (the Canadian Cancer Society) offers our sincere condolences to family and friends of the deceased participant,” she said in an email.The website for the War Horse Warrior Challenge described the event as a five-kilometre family run in which participants were required to overcome “uncompromising obstacles as you sludge through dirt and mud all in the name of a good cause.”In previous challenges, participants crawled through pooled water under pipes, climbed walls and carried sandbags.A notice on the the website said Saturday’s challenge was cancelled due to “unforeseen circumstances,” and people who didn’t complete the course were asked to email or call for a refund.OPP asked anyone with information about the death to contact them at read more

Morgan Stanley CFO says companies still cautious on dealmaking bank rejiggers business

Morgan Stanley CFO says companies still cautious on deal-making; bank rejiggers business plan by Christina Rexrode, The Associated Press Posted Apr 18, 2013 7:39 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email NEW YORK, N.Y. – After getting bludgeoned in the financial crisis, Morgan Stanley is staking its future on the steadier, if less spectacular, business of wealth management.In the first quarter, the strategy looked prudent: Profit and revenue soared in wealth management, even as they dipped in investment banking.The wealth management unit generated more fees, and clients shuttled more assets to the bank. Profit margins rose and so did employees’ productivity. In contrast, the company’s investment banking unit brought in less revenue from trading bonds and commodities, and made less money on advising companies on mergers and acquisitions.Overall earnings slipped 12 per cent from a year earlier — to $1.2 billion, or 61 cents a share. While that beat expectations of analysts polled by FactSet, investors weren’t impressed. The stock fell $1.16, or 5.4 per cent, to close at $20.31 Thursday.CEO James Gorman said the first quarter represented “solid momentum.” He’s been investing in the wealth management unit, emphasizing products like home loans, and steering the purchase of the rest of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, the retail brokerage it owns with Citigroup.Analysts, however, described the first quarter almost like a holding period. They said the bank was moving toward the correct positions but were disappointed by weaknesses in the investment bank. They’re also anxious for the Morgan Stanley Smith Barney deal to be completed.Gorman, the CEO since the start of 2010, is under pressure to restore Morgan Stanley’s share price and measures of profitability, including its return on equity. His direction for the bank is borne from previous losses: Risky investment banking activities slammed Morgan Stanley in the financial crisis, and regulators are phasing out some of the investment bank’s old sources of revenue, like trading for its own profit.The CEO’s response has been to expand the bank’s work with individual investors. That business can provide a steady source of revenue even when financial markets are volatile. It also gives the bank more earnings power and access to deposits, which helps it fund lending and other initiatives.A big part of that plan is the retail brokerage, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. Morgan Stanley is in the process of buying out Citi’s remaining 35 per cent stake. It has said it plans to do so by the end of this year, though it still needs Federal Reserve approval for part of the process.The bank’s different units are also being encouraged to work together. For example, the investment bank usually deals with companies and other institutional clients, helping them broker deals or trading on their behalf. But those corporate clients also have executives who would make prime customers for the wealth management unit, which advises individuals as well as small and medium-sized companies.Thursday’s results reinforced the shifting focus. The wealth management unit accounted for about 41 per cent of revenue, after stripping out an accounting charge. Three years ago, when Gorman took over, it accounted for 34 per cent.Wealth management’s profit margins and income tend to be more reliable and steady. Analysts said they were pleased that the wealth management unit’s pre-tax profit margin was better than expected at 17 per cent. That’s the highest it’s been since Morgan Stanley formed the joint brokerage with Citigroup, and it’s been steadily rising since 2009. The investment bank’s profit margin was higher, at 20 per cent, but it’s swung widely in recent years: 39 per cent three years ago, and 12 per cent two years ago.Nomura analyst Glenn Schorr said the quarter “showed progress.”“A mixed bag at the (investment bank) isn’t so bad,” he wrote in a note to clients, “when wealth management is so much better (and about to be bigger).”Barclays analyst Roger Freeman noted that the return on equity rate was down over the year — “a sign of progress yet to be made, though with important catalysts on the horizon,” he wrote.More from the earnings report:—The economy: Executives sounded cautiously hopeful about the economy, but were far from declaring victory. In an interview with The Associated Press, Chief Financial Officer Ruth Porat said that institutional investors had been more confident in January and February, then pulled back in March amid the Cyprus bank bailout and Italy’s uncertain elections. It was a trend seen with clients at Goldman Sachs, which reported first-quarter earnings Tuesday.Porat said the market’s uneven performance in recent weeks is another reminder that the recovery “may not come in a straight line,” even if major economies “are clearly on firmer footing than just a year ago.”—The investment bank: The drop in revenue from advising companies on deal making grabbed analysts’ attention. In some ways, it’s a prime time for companies to be merging or buying other companies. With interest rates low, financing is cheap. But Porat said there’s still a level of worry.“CEOs continue to be concerned about longer term earnings outlook and they’re just being very cautious in deals,” she said. “The level of discussion is very good but it’s just not getting to the announcement stage.”Revenue fell 14 per cent to $4.4 billion, after stripping out an accounting charge. Profit was down 30 per cent to $1.1 billion.—Wealth management: The revenue that each representative brings in has been steadily rising, and this quarter amounted to an annualized rate of $851,000, up from $780,000 a year ago.Overall, revenue was up 5 per cent to $3.5 billion. Profit jumped 48 per cent to $597 million.—Expenses: Like most of its peers, Morgan Stanley has been cutting back on spending, including office space, equipment and marketing. The amount the bank spent on salaries, bonuses and benefits fell 5 per cent. Headcount was down 7 per cent, with the bank cutting about 3,900 jobs.—Regulations: Gorman hinted that uncertainty over new regulations would be less of a drag on results. Investors have already baked in much of the effect of the new regulations into their expectations, he said. The bank’s rejiggering how it makes money has also helped. “Our growth areas are those that are unlikely to be much impacted by further regulation,” he said in a call with reporters. “Our path is clearer.—By the numbers: Earnings totalled $1.2 billion, down from $1.3 billion. Per share, those earnings amounted to 61 cents, beating the forecast of 57 cents.Revenue was $8.5 billion, down from $8.9 billion. That beat analysts’ expectations of $8.3 billion.The earnings and revenue exclude the effect of an accounting charge related to the value of the bank’s debt. read more

As temperature soars UNICEF helps children threatened by water cuts in Aleppo

“These water cuts came at the worst possible time, while Syrians are suffering in an intense summer heat wave,” said UNICEF Representative in Syria Hanaa Singer. “Some neighbourhoods have been without running water for nearly three weeks, leaving hundreds of thousands of children thirsty, dehydrated and vulnerable to disease.”In some cases deliberately implemented by parties to the conflict, the disruption to piped water supplies increased the risk of water-borne disease especially among children. Indeed, since the beginning of July alone, 41 per cent of children attending UNICEF-backed clinics in Aleppo governorate – 3,000 in all – reported mild cases of diarrhoea. “We remain concerned that water supplies in Aleppo could be cut again any time adding to what is already a severe water crisis throughout the country,” warned Singer.UNICEF reminds parties to the conflict to refrain from attacking or deliberately interrupting water supplies, treatment and distribution systems, acts which are prohibited under international Humanitarian law, points out a press release issued today.To address the crisis, and despite the ongoing violence in the city, UNICEF has trebled the scale of its water trucking services from 800,000 to 2.5 million liters a day, the largest volume of water delivered since the start of the conflict. The service provides 15 liters of water per person daily to nearly 200,000 people in some of the hardest-hit communities in Aleppo. But UNICEF is working “around the clock” to provide a longer-term solution in cooperation with partners. The water trucking service has been complemented by the drilling of 50 ground water wells that can provide up to 16 million liters of water per day. In addition, UNICEF is developing an infiltration well, close to Aleppo City’s Kwaik River, to enhance the provision of water by more than ten-fold of a regular groundwater well.Despite these efforts, an estimated 500,000 people in Aleppo are still struggling to receive enough water to survive, the agency acknowledged. To address the rising incidence of water-borne illness, UNICEF has delivered diarrhoea kits sufficient to treat more than 18,000 children. And in anticipation of further water shortages and to prevent disease outbreaks, the Fund, through its partners, is distributing water purification tablets for up to 1 million people.Across the country, the agency is working with partners to support the vital water infrastructure on which some 15 million people in Syria depend, equipping wells and supporting procurement and distribution of water treatment supplies. read more

Tomislav Grahovac is new Croatian Handball Federation president

Tomislav Grahovac has been elected new president of the Croatian Handball Federation on Tuesday.Grahovac, who so far had been the chairman of the federation’s supervisory board, follows Sandi Sola who had announced two months ago that he would step down as the federation’s president for personal reasons.“I want to thank everyone for the honour,” said Grahovac. “I’m aware of the great responsibilty you have entrusted me with. Our federation is the best organised federation in the country, There have been great results so far and I sincerely hope we will achieve even better results,” he was quoted on the federation’s website. ← Previous Story Greek A1: Diomidis close to the Play-Off Final Next Story → THW Kiel chase Barca – Landin stops PICK Szeged Tomislav Grahovac

Investigations after Gardaí injured in Limerick crash

first_imgTWO GARDAÍ WERE among four people injured in a crash in Limerick city this morning.The Gardaí were travelling in one of two cars which were involved in the collision at the junction of Mallow Street and Catherine Street just after 7 o’clock this morning.The force of the crash propelled one of the cars to the basement level of the row of houses on the street.All four people – three women and one man – were taken to the Mid-Western Regional Hospital where their injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.The matter has been referred to the Garda Ombudsman in accordance with section 102 of the Garda Siochana Act 2005 as part of standard procedure in any such incident involving Gardaí.A spokesperson for the Garda Ombudsman said the matter is under examination.Gardaí at Roxborough Road are also investigating the matter.last_img read more

Woman called in a bomb threat to graduation to stop her family

first_imgA WOMAN TRYING to keep her family from learning she had dropped out of college called in bomb threats to a commencement ceremony at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut, police said.Danielle Shea of Quincy, Massachusetts, was wearing a cap and gown when she was arrested on Sunday.Hamden police said Shea left the college this year because of financial issues, including an unpaid tuition balance, but her mother continued to pay thousands of dollars she thought was for her daughter’s education.“She was living off-campus. Her mother thought she was going to school,” Hamden police Capt. Ronald Smith said.On graduation day, Shea’s mother tried to obtain a ticket for a ramp where relatives could take photographs of the graduates, but the registrar’s office told her Shea was not enrolled.Shea overheard the conversation, then stepped away and allegedly called in the first bomb threat to try to cancel the ceremony, Smith said.The threats delayed the start of the ceremony for the College of Arts and Sciences by an hour and a half, and it was moved to a second location at the indoor athletic arena as a security precaution.Shea, 22, was arraigned yesterday in Meriden Superior Court where bond was set at $10,000. Her attorney and a prosecutor asked for her to be released on a promise to appear, but the judge said he was troubled by the defendant’s actions.According to police, Shea made two calls to the university’s public safety department. In the first, about 20 minutes before the start of the 6 p.m. graduation ceremony, she stated there was a “bomb in the library,” said police.In the second call, about 20 minutes later, police said Shea warned that “several bombs are on campus” and noted, “You haven’t cleared out graduation. That’s not a good idea.”Hamden and university police identified Shea using the cellphone number she’d called from and then found her inside the TD Bank Sports Center, where the ceremony was moved after the threats.She is charged with first degree threatening and falsely reporting an incident.Messages were left at her mother’s home.Read: Tweeting an airline to say you’re a member of Al-Qaeda isn’t a great idea, apparentlylast_img read more

PCMag Verizon has Americas fastest mobile network

first_imgAll too often when someone asks which carrier is best they get a canned answer — “Verizon is the best”, “T-Mobile crawls in my area”, “Sprint is awesome in Manhattan”, “AT&T is the fastest” and so forth. While conventional wisdom is often based on truth, very few people actually speak about carrier speed and reliability based on empirical data that is backed up by any sort of systematic collection method. After all, switching carriers is both difficult and expensive, so doing it multiple times would be a herculean effort — and that’s just for one city.Each year PCMag drives around the United States and actually tests which mobile networks are the fastest. Using custom software from Sensorly, a solid testing methodology, multiple phones, and whole lot of effort, they determine which mobile network is the fastest in each part of the continental US (well, for the most part – sorry Montanans).The phones used in the 2012 test were all running Android 2.3 and ARM dual-core Cortex-A9 SoCs. The models included the Samsung Galaxy S II, Samsung Galaxy Note, LG Connect 4G, Samsung Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touch, Samsung Galaxy S Blaze, and Motorola Razr Maxx. That group covered all the major carriers, some regional ones, and both 3G and 4G LTE.The national winner for Fastest Mobile Networks 2012 was… Verizon’s 4G LTE network. It’s not only fast, almost more importantly, it’s available in many more cities than AT&T’s LTE network. And, as PCMag put it, “you can’t win if you don’t play.”AT&T’s new, practically unpopulated LTE network took the crown in some cites, like Washington, DC, but no major regions: Verizon Wireless won all of those aside from the nationwide “Rural/Suburban” zones, where T-Mobile was the big winner. As noted before, AT&T was highly competitive, but their 4G LTE just doesn’t cover enough ground yet. Despite not having LTE, T-Mobile did rather well with their HSPA+ network.So now, when someone asks you which network is the fastest you can tell them what you used to say, or you can do a few minutes of reading and tell them, without any question, who has the speed.Read more at PCMag.comlast_img read more

NOW HIRING 10 New Job Openings In Wilmington

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Below are some of the newest job openings in Wilmington:Full-Time Music/Theatre Arts Teacher at Wilmington Public SchoolsPart-Time CNC Machinist (2nd Shift) at TecometFull-Time Commercial Insurance Account Manager at HUB InternationalFull-Time Partner Sales Executive at SOVOS ComplianceFull-Time Alliance Sales Manager at SOVOS ComplianceFull-Time Retail Manager at D&D Mulch & LandscapeFull-Time Production Team Lead at DSM Resins & Functional MaterialsFull-Time District Site Survey Supervisor at Vivint SolarFull-Time Inside Sales Manager at Harrington Industrial PlasticsPart-Time Customer Service Attendant at Epilepsy Foundation New England Donation Center(NOTE: Wilmington businesses — Feel free to send me your job postings at 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 this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedNOW HIRING: 10 Job Openings In WilmingtonIn “Business”NOW HIRING: 10 New Job Openings In WilmingtonIn “Business”NOW HIRING: 10 New Job Openings In WilmingtonIn “Business”last_img read more

OBITUARY Gwendolyn L Fisher Ethier 79

first_imgLITTLETON, MA — Gwendolyn L. (Fisher) Ethier unexpectedly passed away on Sunday, September 2, 2018.Gwen was born in Cambridge, MA on February 8, 1939 and grew up in Wilmington, MA where she was a gifted athlete of many sports. She moved to Littleton, MA where she raised her family on their small farm. She was later employed at Lasertron and MA/Com in Burlington, MA, before retiring. In her free time, Gwen enjoyed bicycling, snowmobiling, photography and gardening. She was also an avid Boston sports fan.Gwen is survived by her children: Richard B. Ethier III, of Shirley, MA; Michael Ethier, of Fitchburg, MA; William Ethier and his wife, Paula, of Greenville, ME; Wendy Ethier, of Roslindale and Rhonda Ethier, of Fitchburg, MA. Her grandchildren: Stacia Kilpatrick, Mark Kilpatrick, Grace Ethier, Rocky Ethier, Alexander Ethier, Carissa Ethier, Michael Ethier Jr., Stephanie Ethier, Jonathan Ethier, Kyle Ethier, Adam Ethier, Cory Harunkiewicz, Bradley Harunkiewicz and Brittany Nance. She is also survived by her siblings: Philip Fisher and his wife, Barbara; Doris Morrissey and her husband, James; Violet Baker and her husband, Joseph; Donald Fisher and his wife, Judy; and many nieces and nephews. Gwen was predeceased by her daughter, Cheryl Ethier, grandson, Lindsay Nance Jr., brothers Robert Rodman, Douglas Fisher, John Fisher and sister, Karen Parker.Family and friends attended a graveside memorial at Westlawn Cemetery, 7 New Estate Rd, Littleton, MA on September 15, 2018 at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Gwen’s memory to the American Cancer Society or MSPCA-Angell.Gwendolyn L. Ethier(NOTE: The above obituary is via 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 this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWilmington OBITUARIES (Week of October 21, 2018)In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Tracey A. (Ethier) Kliros, 49In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Atley P. Miller, 15In “Obituaries”last_img read more

HCL on the rise takes over Wipro as third largest IT firm

first_imgPeople walk in front of the HCL Technologies Ltd office at Noida, on the outskirts of New Delhi April 17, 2013.Reuters fileHCL Technologies, the Noida-based IT firm, has overtaken Wipro to become India’s third largest software services company in terms of dollar revenue after it posted a record profit in the first quarter of 2018.With a nine percent rise in net profit, HCL reported Rs 2,431 crore for the first fiscal quarter, a huge rise from the Rs 2,294 crore estimated by Bloomberg analysts. With a dollar revenue of  $2.05 billion, HCL toppled Wipro, which reported $2.02 billion in the quarter.India’s IT services industry is dominated by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), with a revenue of $5.05 billion, and Infosys, which reported $2.83 billion in the June 2018 quarter.HCL expects the dollar revenue to grow between 8.4 and 10.4 percent for the rest of the 2018-19 financial year. Since Wipro does not issue a full-year revenue outlook, it is now known if HCL will keep its place, or if the Bengaluru-based Wipro will climb back to number 3.Seeing a revival of its traditional services (Mode 1), HCL’s record quarter rode on the back of its 27 transformational deals signed during the quarter, as well as a strong momentum in telecom, financial services, retail and energy utility verticals.Mode 2 services, such as cloud, digital and analytical and Mode 3, led by HCL products and royalty from IP partnerships also saw a sharp rise. HCL is also reported to have filed around 21 patents for various next-gen technologies and platforms including data and analytic solutions, automation and machine learning.Despite the revival of Mode 1, CEO C Vijayakumar believes that Mode 2 and Mode 3 are the clear drivers for the company’s growth in the future. “That is where the market is and we will continue to invest in that area by building an innovation centre that will enable enterprises,” he said in a statement.HCL also saw a rise in revenues from the Americas (12.5 percent) and Europe (7.2 percent) that contributed heavily to the profits. The rise also offset the dip in business from the rest of the world, particularly India, where the company lost $12 million in the SI business.last_img read more

Board game not played in 1500 years discovered in 2300 yearold tomb

first_imgPieces from an ancient board game have been discovered in a tomb near Qingzhou City in China. The board game has been identified as Luibo. However, the rules of the game weren’t exactly included, then again they may have been. Archaeologists reported that the tomb “has been thoroughly robbed. The coffin chamber was almost completely dug out and robbed, suffering severe damage in the process.”The game hasn’t been played for around 1,500 years. In that time, the rules may have even changed, according to some “bo” academics. There wasn’t exactly a Milton Bradley that mass-produced these things with print out rule cards back then.Historians have some ideas about the board game, but it’s under some debate as to what kind of game Luibo was. Some are under the impression that Luibo was a race game, where the goal is to get all six pieces around the marks on the board, or if it may have been a war game, where dice and sticks were thrown to decide damage against your opponent.Interpretations of these rules come from analyzing the layout of the game, but also from cultural references in poems and literature. One poem written 2,200 years ago by a man named Song Yu refers to the game:“Then, with bamboo dice and ivory pieces, the game of Liu Bo is begun; sides are taken; they advance together; keenly they threaten each other. Pieces are kinged, and the scoring doubled. Shouts of ‘five white!’ arise” (translation by David Hawkes).Archaeologists reported they found some of the pieces from the Luibo game set. There were 21 rectangular game pieces with painted numbers on hand, as well as a broken tile that researchers believe was a part of the board game. A 14-sided dice made from the tooth of an animal was also found in the tomb. The dice is an interesting item, as the numbers on it range from 1 to 6, while two of the faces are blank.[Chess set image courtesy of drs2biz on WikiMedia, 14-face die image courtesy if Chinese Cultural Relics]last_img read more

Jalosathis ensuring safe commute for Kolkatans

first_imgKolkata: Deployment of jalosathis at transit points of inland waterways is ensuring safety and security to commuters.It may be mentioned that the Mamata Banerjee government has taken all necessary measures to ensure the safety and security of people who travel across river Hooghly in vessels. Major steps were taken after the Telenipara incident that had claimed some lives. The state government had decided to develop jetties at the transit points following Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), to avoid any untoward incident. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeBesides upgrading the existing earmarked jetties, new ones were also constructed following the SOP that ensured proper illumination in the area, necessary infrastructure to check overloading of vessels, etc. At the same time, the idea was mooted to deploy well-trained persons at the jetties so that the SOPs are maintained and so, the jalosathis were posted at the jetties. The jalosathis underwent necessary training in this connection before they were posted at the jetties. Besides ensuring that passenger load of vessels is maintained and no passenger gets onto the jetty before the scheduled time, the jalosathis have also been trained to initiate rescue work in case any untoward incident takes place. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe jalosathis have been commissioned a blue uniform so that they can be easily identified by commuters, who can approach them for any sort of help. Commuters also feel confident in travelling in the vessels due to the presence of jalosathis at the transit points. At night, the jalosathis ensure that the area remains properly illuminated so that commuters do not face problem in getting down from vessels due to lack of sufficient light at the transit points. The jalosathis follow the orders strictly so that no overloading takes place. They also help elderly people as and when required. They also ensure that there is no rush to get onto the vessels, to prevent any accident.last_img read more

Native Unions new speaker strikes directly at my weakness for tasteful

first_imgBluetooth and smart speakers are a dime a dozen these days, and many of them aren’t bad — so what it often comes down to is style. Native Union has my number with its latest device, which accentuates the classic bookcase speaker look with a tech-heavy back end and brass volume knob.It’s a collaboration with French audio outfit La Boite Concept (roughly, “concept box”), which presumably did the sound-specific portions of the speaker — that is to say, the speaker — while Native Union brought its understated design chops to the bargain.My iPhone SE proudly wore a Native Union case for a year or so in handsome cherry and brass, though the plastic parts eventually broke down. This looks to be rather a more solid construction, but the design notes are the same: a focus on natural materials with slashes of metal.Inside is the amplifier and guts, of course, and in back a drawer hides the many inputs: two 3.5mm jacks, two USB, one USB-C. I’m not sure how many of those you’ll end up using simultaneously, but it’s always nice to have options. Plus Bluetooth, of course.Right now the speaker isn’t quite listed on Native Union’s site — it’s that fresh. Acquire apparently scooped the maker of the thing. I’ve asked for more details, and I’m sure it’ll be online soon. I know it’s coming because there’s a “speakers” nav on their site:It’s a hell of a good looking thing, but you know it comes at a price — $799. Yes, and you’ll have to buy it at MOMA stores in New York. Really, now. Maybe I’ll wait for a sale.last_img read more

Introducing the Tico Times Weekly Digest

first_imgWe’ve been debuting a lot of things this year.We premiered our first 360 coverage in April during the 2018 presidential elections and then we launched our podcast, The Tico Times Dispatch, early last month.Now we’d like to introduce you to our new weekly news show, The Tico Times Weekly Digest. We’ll be summarizing the week’s news and telling you what to look out for in the coming week every Monday.Subscribe to our Youtube channel to get notifications whenever we publish a weekly digest or other news video.This week in Costa Rica:Tourism industry hit hard by general strikePlan on traveling through Costa Rica this week? Visit and avoid getting stuck in traffic.360 Whale watching video in Marino Ballena National ParkSecrets from a local surfer – Hottest surfing spots in Costa RicaOff the Eaten Path (Cantina X) – One of Costa Rica’s best chifrijosPoetry, Cacique and memories at San Jose’s cultural dive bar – La Bohemia Facebook Comments Related posts:The Tico Times Weekly Digest: April 8, 2019 Costa Rican government seeks agreement with unions to end strike The Tico Times Weekly Digest: Oct. 1, 2018 Venezuela accuses Costa Rica of ‘subordination’ to U.S.last_img read more

Blockchain EVoting is Real Where How When

first_imgAnonymity is often considered a crucial element of democratic participation, although most national elections are in fact ‘pseudonymous’. This means that it is not easy to discover how individuals voted, but it is possible because a code links each ballot paper with a personal entry on the electoral register. We are forced to trust the authorities to protect our anonymity. BEV is also pseudonymous, so it may sometimes be possible to discover how an individual voted. Cyber-security issues continue to remain one of the hottest topics during presidential elections, as fears have often been raised that domestic or foreign actors could try to skew the results of the election.While many see a solution in dumping all forms of electronic voting and defaulting back to offline, paper-based systems — especially as electronic voting machines have proven to be extremely vulnerable — others are hoping new technologies can make elections more secure. Blockchain technology, especially, is drawing a lot of interest on this front.Many blockchains currently exist, and a number of these could serve as possible platforms for voting services. Follow My Vote is a Virginia-based startup hoping to move people toward blockchain-based voting. The startup will be testing its platform in a mock online election that will run in parallel with the U.S. presidential election.There’s also NYC-based Blockchain Technologies Corp., which is taking a hybrid approach of a blockchain-powered voting system coupled with paper ballots that use QR codes to ensure each vote is only cast once.But we’re seeing more movement in blockchain voting outside the U.S.The government-owned Australian Post service, for example, is using blockchain technology to create a location agnostic, tamper-proof voting system that is traceable and anonymous, and would prove to be resilient against denial of service attacks. For the moment, the service is testing the waters with corporate and community elections, but the directors of the project hope to one day be able to handle full parliamentary elections.Russia’s central securities depository, NSD, is also dabbling in blockchain with a fully functional e-proxy voting system, a ledger on which voting instructions are transmitted and counted. The technology has already been used at bondholder meetings and will be extended to other business areas of the NSD.Another country looking to leverage blockchain technology for voting is Estonia, which is already a leader in politics technology with its e-residency program, an electronic identity platform that enables foreigners to do business and access government services. The country is now complementing previous efforts with a blockchain-based e-voting system that enables both Estonian nationals and e-residents to securely vote in company shareholder meetings.Blockchain voting is also making its debut in the Middle East at Abu Dhabi’s Stock Exchange, which just this week announced it has started using blockchain to enable stakeholders to participate and observe votes in their general annual meetings, and in Denmark, where the Liberal Alliance political party chose to use blockchain for its internal voting back in 2014.Other efforts are in the works in the rest of the World, such as in Ukraine, as it has lately been announced by the media.E-voting could take many forms: using the internet or a dedicated, isolated network; requiring voters to attend a polling station or allowing unsupervised voting; using existing devices, such as mobile phones and laptops, or requiring specialist equipment. Now we have a further choice; to continue trusting central authorities to manage elections or to use blockchain technology to distribute an open voting record among citizens. Many experts agree that e-voting would require revolutionary developments in security systems. The debate is whether blockchain will represent a transformative or merely incremental development, and what its implications could be for the future of democracy.The blockchain protocol is a means of logging and verifying records that is transparent and distributed among users. Usually, votes are recorded, managed, counted and checked by a central authority. Blockchain-enabled e-voting (BEV) would empower voters to do these tasks themselves, by allowing them to hold a copy of the voting record. The historic record could then not be changed because other voters would see that the record differs from theirs.Illegitimate votes could not be added, because other voters would be able to scrutinize whether votes were compatible with the rules (perhaps because they have already been counted or are not associated with a valid voter record). BEV would shift power and trust away from central actors, such as electoral authorities, and foster the development of a tech-enabled community consensus.One way of developing BEV systems for e-voting is to create a new, bespoke system, designed to reflect the specific characteristics of the election and electorate. A second approach that may be cheaper and easier is to ‘piggyback’, running the election on a more established blockchain, such as that used by the virtual currency, Bitcoin, thus ensuring a wide user base to start with and extremely high engagement of the people.Blockchain experts are discussing a new generation of ‘techno-democratic systems’, and we can already see the emergence of virtual equivalents of national administrations, based upon blockchain technology. However, in the near term, BEV’s strongest potential may be in organizational rather than national contexts. Indeed, they have been used for the internal elections of political parties, and shareholder votes in Estonia.Taking the concept a step further, BEV could be combined with smart contracts, to automatically act under certain agreed conditions. Here, for example, election results could trigger the automatic implementation of manifesto promises, investment choices or other organizational decisions.The more optimistic promises of e-voting should however be read with some skepticism:Coercion is a threat for any voting system that offers remote participation (e.g. postal votes). For both BEV and paper elections, the use of private polling booths is the only guarantee against fraud.Accessibility to all voters is a key concern in all elections. BEV could complicate matters by presenting citizens with too many options. For example, they might have the choice of whether to vote at a terminal in a traditional booth or use a personal device. There may be different interfaces for citizens who wish to go beyond casting votes and also exercise their right to access data and check that the correct procedures have been followed. If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at or on Twitter: @SimonCockingcenter_img Another key question is how to ensure widespread trust in the security and legitimacy of the system. As with paper-based elections, it is not enough for the result to be fair and valid. The whole electorate, even if they are disappointed with the result, must accept that the process was legitimate and reliable. As such, beyond providing actual security and accuracy, BEV must also inspire broad public confidence and trust. Because the Blockchain protocol is quite complicated, this may be a barrier to mainstream public acceptability of BEV.In assessing the potential impact of BEV, we must consider the values and politics it reflects. BEV does not just digitize the traditional voting process; it proposes an alternative with a different set of values and political basis. The process is managed by the people and it is transparent, decentralized and bottom-up.In this light, it is not surprising that links are drawn between BEV and transitions towards a more direct, decentralized and bottom-up democracy. As such, the extent to which Blockchain technology will flourish in the area of e-voting may depend upon the extent to which it can reflect the values and structure of society, politics and democracy.Finally, it must be remarked that smart contracts on Blockchain put transactions on autopilot. True believers want them to do away entirely with intermediaries, like governments in the specific case of e-voting, but they should be careful what they wish for. If smart contracts spread widely, much of the flexibility that smooths the functioning of the economy would be taken away, since real-world institutions can adjust when things go wrong.In fact, for now, the only aspect in which human intervention surpasses bug-ridden code is that of relentlessness, representing one of the biggest obstacles of the application of technology to the real world.Eloisa Marchesoni.More information about Irish Tech News and the Business ShowcaseFYI the ROI for you is => We now get over 1.5 million monthly views, and up to 900k monthly unique visitors, from over 160 countries. We have over 860,000 relevant followers on Twitter on our various accounts & were recently described as Ireland’s leading online tech news site and Ireland’s answer to TechCrunch, so we can offer you a good audience!Since introducing desktop notifications a short time ago, which notify readers directly in their browser of new articles being published, over 16000 people have now signed up to receive them ensuring they are instantly kept up to date on all our latest content. Desktop notifications offer a unique method of serving content directly to verified readers and bypass the issue of content getting lost in people’s crowded news feeds.evotiDrop us a line if you want to be featured, guest post, suggest a possible interview, or just let us know what you would like to see more of in our future articles. We’re always open to new and interesting suggestions for informative and different articles. Contact us, by email, twitter or whatever social media works for you.Homelast_img read more