Is it on the map Liberals face hurdles with infrastructure transparency tool

first_imgOTTAWA – An online map laying out billions in infrastructure spending approved by the federal Liberals has yet to provide the full scope of funding towards new and upgraded bridges, roads and transit systems.A briefing note to the top official at Infrastructure Canada late last year outlined the challenges of creating a mapping tool for all federally funded projects aimed at addressing transparency concerns over exactly where billions in promised money was going.Federal infrastructure spending data goes back 16 years, but officials identified multiple potholes that have prevented them from meeting Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s request for an online map to chart all of Ottawa’s infrastructure spending.There was no way to link some funding to specific projects because cities didn’t need to report how they used the $10.4 billion transferred annually to them through a GST rebate, nor did they have to use the rebate solely for infrastructure projects, for example.A similar hurdle existed for cash delivered directly to cities through transfers like the federal gas tax, the briefing note said.A spokeswoman for Infrastructure Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said the government is working with other departments overseeing the funding to add their spending data to the transparency tool.Kate Monfette said the back-end data set which feeds into the map is updated regularly to reflect newly-approved projects and the map will always change to reflect that.“The goal of the project map is for us to share the maximum information available in one place,” she said.“Our goal is to have a visual representation of all (infrastructure plan) investments that Canadians can see in one place and we continue to work toward that.”The federal government’s infrastructure plan totals about $186.7 billion over the next decade, about half of which is funding the Liberals have budgeted since coming to office in late 2015.The Liberals have been repeatedly forced to answer questions about the budgetary details of their infrastructure program. In March, Parliament’s spending watchdog criticized the government for an incomplete accounting of its funding for water and transit systems, among other construction projects.Such criticisms were not entirely new: the parliamentary budget office raised concerns five years ago about how the previous Conservative government budgeted infrastructure money, leading to opposition cries that the Tories were playing a shell game with construction dollars.Last February, Trudeau directed then- infrastructure minister Amarjeet Sohi to “develop a tool to map” projects funded through the Liberals’ spending program, the briefing note said. Getting the map online was also designed to address “concerns raised in the media about transparency and reporting,” reads the memo, obtained by The Canadian Press under the Access to Information Act.The first phase of the infrastructure plan is to deliver $14.4 billion through 34 programs detailed in the Liberals’ first budget in 2016. The second phase will see $81.2 billion over the next decade through 24 new programs.What officials ended up doing was attempting to put every project that falls under the Liberal infrastructure plan, including money set aside by the previous Conservative government, on to one single map.More information has been added to the map since its launch earlier this year, but some of the data identified in the briefing note have yet to be included.“The map remains a work in progress as we continue to add data from other departments delivering the (infrastructure plan) as well as that from challenges like the Smart Cities Challenge,” Monfette said.last_img read more

Longrunning TV shows set to wrap up

first_imgNew Delhi: All good things must come to an end, and that stands true for hugely popular shows like ‘Game of Thrones’, ‘Big Bang Theory’, ‘Modern Family’, ‘Supernatural’ and ‘Suits’. Here are some shows that are coming to an end soon: GoT: With a storyline that paints a whimsical world of dragons and White Walkers on one hand, and stays close to reality by showing how relationships cannot be trusted when it comes to ruling a kingdom, the show, with its story based on George R.R. Martin’s novels, has become a global phenomenon.’Game of Thrones’ Season 8 will premiere internationally on April 14. Suits: The story started when a hotshot lawyer Harvey Specter (essayed Gabriel Macht) took a gamble by hiring a brilliant college dropout Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams) as an associate in his law firm, and gave the audience a glimpse of the trials and tribulations of the legal world. The drama began in 2011. Supernatural: Credited as the longest-running sci-fi genre show, ‘Supernaturals’ is all about the supernatural and paranormal. It follows brothers Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles) Winchester as they join their family business of hunting down supernatural monsters. Big Bang Theory: This show’s universe originated with the story of how four nerds – react when a girl enters their life as a friendly neighbour. Other shows include ‘Modern Family’, ‘Arrow’, etc.last_img read more

Egyptians respond to latest Moroccan TV statements

Cairo – Egyptian diplomats should take further political resolutions, expert says.Only 9% of Egyptian youth believe what they see on television channels, according to a survey issued last December by Baseera, an independent poll center in Cairo.The number should not be surprising. Ever since the first uprisings in Egypt in 2011, the Egyptian television channels have shown a strong record of unprofessional and inciting coverage for several political issues. On the regional level, the language of media discourse between Egypt and Morocco has turned into a gossip. Last month, Morocco’s state-owned channels 2M and Alaoula broadcasted a report that harshly criticized Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, describing what happened in egypt as “coup.”The statements were not the first of its kind between Egypt and Morocco. During the same month, Egyptian TV presenter Wafaa ElKilany said in her show on the MBC network that Morocco and Africa are the “land of sorcery.”A couple of months prior to this statement, and during Eid al-Adha Youssef Eid, Secretary General of the Fatwa at Al-Azhar Mosque, said that Morocco’s celebration “is religiously not permissible because it violates Muslim customs and break the consensus.”Many Egyptians however were not aware of the latest statements by the Moroccan state television, while experts believe this was triggered by changes in the political relations between both countries.Yasser Abdul-Aziz, Egyptian media expert said, “this is a strategy Arab governments use when they need to bring certain topics into discussion,” referring to the recent statements by the Moroccan media. “Egypt’s rapprochement to Algeria raised concerns from the Moroccan side,” he added.In July 2014, one month after Egyptian president Abdel-Fattah Al Sisi’s inauguration, a delegation of Egyptian journalists visited the Tindouf camps Algeria. The group included a wide range of journalists who work for both state-run and private news organizations.During their four-days visit, they managed to speak to many of the people living in the Sahara camps of Tindouf, describing their daily lives as “refugees” seeking the basic standard of living, and also reviewing their customs and traditions.Journalists who went on that reporting trip claim they did not intend to provoke negative responses from any side over the other.“I went to this trip in my capacity as a journalist, only trying to bring all voices on an existing issue,” Egyptian journalist Ismail Al-Ashwal. who covered the story for the private Shorouk newspaper. said about the reasons for his visit. “I was very glad to speak to the Moroccan ambassador in Cairo as well and to the United Nations for further comments,” he added.With a tinge of pride, Al-Ashwal said his visit outcome was very fruitful and his report was accurate and impartial. He also said he has not been following any of the comments made recently about such a visit.Abdul-Aziz argues the media should stay away from this issue, and that Egyptian diplomats should instead take further political resolutions and not leave it for an open media battle.Meanwhile, other citizens believe it’s only about the media and it has nothing to with politics.Born to Moroccan parents, currently working in Egypt, Sharif Paget says, “I believe the media does so they can get more people to watch it and then cause controversy and gossip.” He added if people stopped watching it, then they’ll change it to something else.In Morocco, there is a sentiment that people do feel as though what happened in Egypt was a “coup,” according to Paget, despite the Moroccan government’s positive stance towards Sisi.“Such stereotypical statements can absolutely impact the relations between citizens of both countries,” Paget said, referring to the Egyptian statements on Morocco. “It would be best if people stopped tuning into such “gossip,” he added. read more

It is Now Legitimate for Africa to Organize the World Cup

Rabat – Head of Morocco’s Royal Football Federation (FRMF) Fouzi Lekjaa  believes that after Morocco’s four failed attempts to win hosting rights for the World Cup, it is “legitimate for Africa to host the competition for the second time in history.”The chief of the Moroccan football association shared his opinion in an interview with Maghreb TV regarding Morocco’s 2026 World Cup bid.“Everyone knows that Morocco is applying on behalf of the continent,” Lekjaa said. Touting Morocco’s assets, Lekjaa mentioned Morocco’s stability in a region that has experienced several crises.“The stability offers a lot of visibility and allows you to move forward.”He also saluted Morocco’s geographical position, recalling that the 12 cities selected to host the games are within a 550-kilometer radius from Casablanca.“We promise a real football party, an opportunity to advance in a noble civilization process, one of the peculiarities of football,” he said.The president of the football federation also touted the significance of football and how Moroccans are passionate about the game.Lekjaa also discussed Morocco’s goal and how the World Cup will develop the country.“Organizing the World Cup will allow us to achieve several goals, including improving health, sports, and football infrastructure,” said Lekjaa.The vote will be held at FIFA’s 68th Congress on Wednesday in Moscow. The congress will allow football federations from around the globe to choose the bid that will best host the tournament.Morocco’s bid committee landed in many countries to introduce its bid in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. read more

Government declares day of mourning

The Secretary to the Ministry of Buddhasasana and Religious Affairs M.K.B. Dissanayake, said that on the instructions of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, his Ministry has made all arrangements to hold the funeral of the Mahanayake Thero under State patronage. The government has declared Monday as a day of mourning following the demise of the Mahanayaka of the Sri Lanka Ramanna Nikaya the most Venerable Weweldeniye Medhalankara Thero.The Mahanayaka of the Sri Lanka Ramanna Nikaya passed away on Wednesday afternoon at the age of 103. The government information department said that all liquor shops will be closed on Monday during the day of morning as the funeral of the monk will take place on that day.

American Airlines extends Boeing plane flight cancellations

WASHINGTON — American Airlines says it will keep the Boeing 737 Max plane off its schedule until Nov. 3, which is two months longer than it had planned.In a statement Sunday, American says the action will result in the cancellation of about 115 flights per day. It says it “remains confident” that the Boeing plane will be recertified this year. But some airline executives are growing doubtful about that timetable.United Airlines announced Friday that it was extending its cancellations until Nov. 3, a month longer than it had planned.United has 14 Max jets while American has 24 of them. Southwest Airlines, which has 34 Max jets — more than any other carrier — is cancelling about 150 flights per day.The plane was grounded in March following two deadly crashes.The Associated Press

Berlin to tighten rules for electric scooter users

Berlin plans to stop electric scooters from being left haphazardly on sidewalks and other anti-social behaviour that’s drawn the ire of residents in the German capital since the vehicles were made legal two months ago.City transport officials said Wednesday after a meeting with scooter providers that they’ll designate special on-street parking zones for the battery-powered vehicles, which are popular among tourists and young people.Berlin police will also step up patrols to prevent illegal behaviour such as doubling.Police say seven people have been seriously injured and 27 suffered minor injuries in scooter accidents since mid-June, saying most were due to riders behaving carelessly.In Paris, where about 20,000 scooters roam the streets , authorities recently proposed limiting speeds to 8 kilometres per hour (5 mph) in areas with heavy foot traffic.The Associated Press read more

Mega Brands caps strong year with best fourth quarter since 2010 recapitalization

by Ross Marowits, The Canadian Press Posted Mar 1, 2013 11:00 am MDT Mega Brands caps strong year with best fourth quarter since 2010 recapitalization AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email MONTREAL – Mega Brands capped a strong year by posting its best fourth-quarter since the toymaker’s 2010 recapitalization, as soaring North American sales contributed to a 20-fold growth in net income.The Montreal-based toy maker reporting in U.S. dollars earned $4 million for the period ended Dec. 31, up from $234,000 a year earlier.It earned 24 cents per basic share and one cent per share on a diluted basis, compared to one cent basic and a loss of 21 cents per share on a diluted basis a year earlier.The big difference between basic and diluted earnings per share reflects the impact of the recapitalization, which potentially will increase the number of shares outstanding, thus reducing the amount of profit attributed to each share.Mega Brands’ net sales jumped 18 per cent to $127.5 million from $108 million.“This strong finish capped a great year for Mega in which we significantly strengthened our brands and our financial position,” CEO Marc Bertrand said Friday during a conference call.Mega Brands (TSX:MB) was expected to earn 15 cents per basic share on $117 million of revenues, according to two analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.Pre-tax operating earnings (EBITDA) increased 33 per cent to $13.9 million, the strongest improvement in two and a half years and substantially ahead of analyst expectations of $12.6 million.For the full year, the company’s profits doubled to $16.6 million or $1.01 per basic share as revenues grew 11.5 per cent to $420.3 million from $376.8 million in 2011.Toy sales grew by 21 per cent in the fourth quarter, while stationery and activities sales were up one per cent.North American sales rose 22 per cent, a fourth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth, while international sales were up seven per cent.Bertrand said the company expects a strong performance in 2013 as its new Barbie line of construction toys gains traction around the world and it adds other toys, including Skylanders and Hot Wheels.Martin Landry of GMP Securities said Mega Brands had solid fourth-quarter results and “impressive” balance sheet improvement as it reduced debt by $30 million.He said the company’s strongest performance since before the recapitalization highlights the strength of its product offering which is resulting in significant traction at retail.“With the success of the initial Barbie product line launch, we would expect this momentum to continue as Barbie launches globally beginning mid-year and combined with the launch of Hot Wheels construction sets in the fall and new product introductions in Skylanders, in our view this bodes quite well for Mega Brands’ future,” he wrote in a report.Landry said Mega Brands’ North American sales again outperformed larger competitors Mattel and Hasbro for the fifth consecutive quarter, suggesting Mega Brands continued to gain market share during the quarter.Mega Brands manufactures more than half of its toys in Montreal, at least double what it did a few years ago, and said it has begun to explore opportunities to further expand its Canadian manufacturing base.It is seeking up to $50 million in financial support from the Quebec government to build a new production facility, according to a filing with the province’s lobbyist registry.On the Toronto Stock Exchange, Mega Brands shares briefly hit a new 52-week high in early trading Friday, and were up 44 cents, or 3.73 per cent, at C$12.23 in later trading. read more

Vanuatu urges inclusive development pledges to continue speaking out against colonialism

Urging inclusive development that left no one on the margins of society, the Prime Minister of Vanuatu today stressed that the United Nations General Assembly is the forum where leaders can “speak their hearts freely” on a range of urgent issues, from collective security to human rights and decolonization. The post-2015 development agenda, Prime Minister of Moana Carcasses Kalosil said, compels a “rethink of global partnership structures” and national priorities, as well as action to better achieve the targets. The theme of the Assembly’s general debate this year is setting the stage for a sustainability agenda that will succeed the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), largely focused on anti-poverty targets, when they expire in 2015. Mr. Kalosil said that beyond 2015, an integrated and balanced approach is required in the social, economic and environmental dimensions. Vanuatu was committed to tackling climate change, seeking renewable energy and pursuing sustainable development. He urged fulfilment of financial pledges, considering the pace of climate-change-induced impacts on small island developing States. The Prime Minister went on to recall his country’s long-standing commitment to speak out in the Assembly against colonialism and neo-imperialism. “And again today, I stand here once more, on behalf of the entire population of our archipelago, to speak for those who are still living in the colonized territories,” he said, while welcoming the positive steps taken towards recognizing the inalienable right of French Polynesia to self-determination, as well as the discussions on New Caledonia. More than 80 former colonies, comprising some 750 million people, have gained independence since the creation of the UN. The 17 remaining Non-Self-Governing Territories still under the purview of what is referred to as the Special Committee on Decolonization are home to nearly two million people and include New Caledonia and French Polynesia. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, calling for fresh approaches to the issue of decolonization, has said it is time for a new kind of inclusive dialogue. Mr. Kalosil then turned to the question of West Papua and the need to ensure the population’s human rights were respected. “It is clear from many historical records that the Melanesian people of West Papua were the scapegoats of cold war politics and were sacrificed to gratify the appetite for natural resources which this country possesses,” he said. UN Member States, subscribing to the principles of democracy, good governance, human rights and the rule of law, cannot ignore the issue of West Papua. “How can we then ignore hundreds of thousands of West Papuans who have been brutally beaten and murdered? The people of West Papua are looking to the UN as a beacon for hope. It is time for the UN to move beyond its periphery and address and rectify some historical error,” he said, calling for the appointment of a special representative to probe alleged human rights abuses in the Papuan provinces. read more

Harmony and Dept of Mining Engineering at University of Pretoria launch mining

first_imgResearch on a safer working environment in the hard-rock mining industry will henceforth be a very specific focus area at the University of Pretoria (UP). This is the result of a donation of R4.7 million over three years by Harmony Gold Mining Co to UP in order to establish a Chair in Rock Engineering and Numerical Modelling in mining. The Harmony chair will be housed in the Department of Mining Engineering of the University’s Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology.The aim of the chair will be to take part in leading research activities in the field of rock mechanics and numerical modelling in the mining industry. The chair is also aimed at producing research and learning outcomes to the benefit of Harmony, the University and the country as a whole. There will be opportunities for the development of products like software to support numerical modelling.Apart from research and studies in the above-mentioned fields, efforts will also be made to establish a postgraduate qualification in rock mechanics. Expanding undergraduate teaching in rock mechanics and numerical modelling, specifically as a result of new research being done, will also be an important function of the chair.Another important function of the Harmony chair will be to arrange much needed liaison between academic institutions and the industry in general, but specifically between Harmony and UP.Harmony will further benefit from this donation through its interaction with international leaders in the field of rock mechanics and numerical modelling research, as well as the interaction with under- and postgraduate students by way of student projects.Graham Briggs, CEO of Harmony, said: “Ensuring the safety of each of our mine workers is Harmony’s top priority. Therefore, further research and development to ensure even safer underground conditions are of the utmost importance to us. It is a privilege to have the University of Pretoria as partner in the pursuit of even safer mining activities.“It is of cardinal importance to our industry that South Africa should be seen as the leader in the field of research, with specific reference to the prevention of rock related deaths and injuries. We trust that this initiative will strengthen the partnership between academic institutions and the industry in hard-rock research activities and will empower mining companies to effect further safety improvements,” said Briggs.last_img read more

G7 snubs Russia summit over Ukraine crisis

first_imgG7 Leaders meeting at Catshuis, the official residence of the Dutch Prime Minister, in The Hague. (PA image)Crimea“We are not trying to hold on to this format, and we see no great tragedy if it does not meet,” Lavrov said, insisting that Crimea has “a right to self-determination”.Russia’s takeover of the region was not “malicious intent”, said Lavrov, but was to “protect the Russians who have been living there for hundreds of years”.Moscow was added to the G7 club of the US, Japan, Germany, Italy, France, Canada and Britain — seen as the world’s top diplomatic and economic table — in 1999 as a reward for choosing the path of democracy after the collapse of Communism.French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said the snubbing of Russia was “perhaps the most significant action because it shows that all these different countries have not accepted the annexation of Crimea as a fait accompli”.Fabius stressed that the G7 had agreed to work out how to reduce their energy dependency on Russia.“Because when we talk about sanctions, possible reactions, energy questions must be asked,” Fabius said.“We must be in a situation where we don’t depend as much as we do today on Russia,” he said.© – AFP 2014Related: Outnumbered: Ukrainian troops withdraw from Crimea>Read: “The aim of Putin is not Crimea but all of Ukraine”: Kiev fears Russia ready to attack> THE G7 GROUP of top economic powers today scrapped a planned meeting to be hosted by Russia as they sought to deepen Moscow’s isolation over the Ukraine crisis.After emergency talks called by US President Barack Obama, the G7 said they would hold a meeting in Brussels without Russia instead of the wider G8 summit that was to have taken place in Sochi.The G7 also threatened tougher sanctions against Russia for its annexation of Crimea, which has plunged relations between the West and Moscow to their lowest point since the end of the Cold War.The meeting in The Hague came as Ukraine ordered its outnumbered troops to withdraw from Crimea as yet another of its bases was stormed and the White House said it was “very concerned” by the Russian troop build-up on the border.Sanctions“We remain ready to intensify actions including coordinated sectoral sanctions that will have an increasingly significant impact on the Russian economy, if Russia continues to escalate this situation,” the leaders said in a statement.The G7 “came together because of shared beliefs and shared responsibilities. Russia’s actions in recent weeks are not consistent with them. Under these circumstances, we will not participate in the planned Sochi summit,” they added.But Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov defiantly dismissed such a move as “no great tragedy” after separate talks with US Secretary of State John Kerry and Ukraine’s interim Foreign Minister Andriy Deshchytsya.“If our Western partners think that this format (the G8) has outlived itself, then so be it,” Lavrov told reporters.last_img read more

Rohingya insurgents call for humanitarian ceasefire

first_imgRohingya refugees stretch their hands to receive food distributed by local organisations in Kutupalong, Bangladesh, 9 September. Photo: Reuters Rohingya insurgents declared a month-long unilateral ceasefire, starting on Sunday, to enable aid groups to help ease a humanitarian crisis in northwest Myanmar.Nearly 300,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh and 30,000 non-Muslim civilians have been displaced inside Myanmar after the military launched a counter-offensive following attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) insurgents on 30 police posts and an army base on 25 Aug.“ARSA strongly encourages all concerned humanitarian actors resume their humanitarian assistance to all victims of the humanitarian crisis, irrespective of ethnic or religious background during the ceasefire period,” ARSA said in a statement.Rohingya refugees climb up a hill after crossing the Bangladesh-Myanmar border in Cox`s Bazar, Bangladesh 8 September, 2017. Photo: ReutersThe impact of the move is unclear. The group does not appear to have been able to put up significant resistance against the military force unleashed in Myanmar’s northwestern Rakhine state. In the last two weeks, thousands of homes have been burned down, dozens of villages uprooted and thousands of people are still on the move towards the border with Bangladesh.The wave of hungry and traumatised refugees pouring into Bangladesh has strained aid agencies and local communities already helping hundreds of thousands displaced by previous waves of violence in Myanmar.In its statement, ARSA called on the military to also lay down arms and allow humanitarian aid to all affected people.Myanmar says its security forces are carrying out clearance operations to defend against ARSA, which the government has declared a terrorist organisation.Rohingya refugees climb up a hill after crossing the Bangladesh-Myanmar border in Cox`s Bazar, Bangladesh 8 September, 2017. Photo: ReutersRights monitors and fleeing Rohingya say the army and Rakhine Buddhist vigilantes have mounted a campaign of arson aimed at driving out the Muslim population.Help for BangladeshOn Friday, the United Nations in Bangladesh found tens of thousands of refugees who had not been counted before, raising the count to 270,000 from some 164,000 the day before. On Saturday, that jumped by another 20,000 to 290,000.On Saturday, thousands of Rohingya were milling on the road near the camp of Kutapalong, carrying bamboo and tarpaulin to build shacks. Children and women flocked to every stopping vehicle, begging.Aid workers say a serious humanitarian crisis is also unfolding on the Myanmar side of the border.Rohingya refugees stretch their hands to receive food distributed by local organisations in Kutupalong, Bangladesh, 9 September, 2017. Photo: Reuters Red Cross organizations are scaling up their operations in Rakhine after the United Nations had to suspend activities there following government suggestions that its agency had supported the insurgents. The United Nations evacuated non-critical staff from the area.Thousands of displaced people in Rakhine have been stranded or left without food for weeks. Many are still trying to cross mountains, dense bush and rice fields to reach Bangladesh.“The UN and INGOs have not been very welcome in Rakhine and…they are not able to operate and ensure the safety and security of their staff and volunteers,” said Joy Singhal of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).The government had invited the Red Cross to assist them, he said.Aid workers worry many Rohingya had been left without food since mid-July, when the World Food Programme (WFP), which had been providing food and cash assistance, was unable to operate.The government said it would set up camps for internally displaced people in Rakhine but the move could draw opposition from U.N. humanitarian experts.last_img

Sunset Overdrive is free for all Xbox Live Gold members for the

first_imgIn celebration of the one year anniversary of the Xbox One, Microsoft is trying something new. If you’ve got some time on your hands this Saturday and you’ve been looking for a new game to try out, Sunset Overdrive is being unlocked for all Xbox Live Gold members to try for free.Demo launches as a teaser to get people to buy a game is nothing new. Much like the recent string of public beta launches that turn into something that anyone with access to a console can play, these tactics are great for getting you hooked on a new game. For Sunset Overdrive, Microsoft is trying something a little different. Instead of having access to a demo version, or only allowing you access to the online portions, Xbox Live Gold subscribers get total access to the entire game for 24 hours. This means you get the 23GB install file as though you had purchased it.When the 24 hour window closes, the game locks and you are asked to shell out the $59.99. If you decide your 24 hour taste was enough to make you want the game, buying the title will restore access and all of your progress. Of course there’s nothing stopping you from loading up on caffeine and crushing the Story Mode in a single day, the irony of which would be amazing once you see the actual plot to Sunset Overdrive, but for the rest of us it’s a nice way to try out a new IP that you might have otherwise overlooked.Sunset Overdrive unlocks at 12:01 Eastern on 11/22, so set an alarm and get ready to grind around and blow things up.last_img read more

How to Build a Mobile App for Your Business

first_img Register Now » This story appears in the October 2011 issue of . Subscribe » October 13, 2011 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 5 min read Mobile applications are no longer an option for small businesses–they’re a necessity. Digital research firm comScore reports that nearly 40 percent of American mobile subscribers accessed downloaded apps in June. And, according to a consumer survey conducted earlier this year by MTV Networks, 91 percent of respondents said apps expose them to new things; 77 percent compared apps to personal assistants; and 83 percent of daily mobile app users reported believing they’re “addicted” to apps.Related: The Best Mobile Apps for BusinessThe fundamental appeal of branded, business-centric mobile applications is clear: Whatever your company does online can also be done on smartphones, which adds portability, location targeting and other cutting-edge technological enhancements to the mix. The potential of mobile apps extends far beyond marketing. Sure, companies can leverage applications to promote their products and services, reaching on-the-go consumers looking for compelling places to shop or grab lunch. But mobile apps can also support online purchase transactions, customer loyalty programs, turn-by-turn directions and social media interactions.Even so, more than three years after Apple first opened its App Store and two years after Google responded with its Android Market, the majority of branded apps available for download promote large, Fortune 500 businesses–not the local restaurants and retailers who stand to benefit most. Chalk that up to cost considerations: Contract app development projects alone can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $8,000, exceeding the budget of the average startup entrepreneur. And that doesn’t even take into account ongoing maintenance and software upgrades.”If you can type in an e-mail address, you can create a mobile app.”– Michael Schneider,Mobile RoadieEnter Mobile Roadie. The Beverly Hills, Calif.-based firm offers an automated turnkey platform that gives its clients the ability to build and manage their own customizable iPhone and Android apps in a matter of minutes. Just upload the desired content and information, and Mobile Roadie handles the rest, including the app store submission process. Best of all, Mobile Roadie pricing begins at $499 for initial setup and $29 per month for ongoing support.Related: Why Mobile-Friendly Websites Are Critical to Your Strategy”If you can type in an e-mail address, you can create a mobile app,” says Mobile Roadie CEO Michael Schneider. “Every brand and business has its superfans–the people who are most loyal to that brand, and who go out of their way to promote it. Mobile apps enable them to promote your brand, share your content on Facebook and Twitter and be a more loyal patron and consumer.”All fledgling businesses should factor mobile apps into their plans from the outset. Creating an app using the Mobile Roadie platform is the easy part. Knowing what you want the app to do–and which consumer segments you wish to reach–can pose a bigger challenge.Here are five lessons all smartphone savants must learn:1. Know what message you want to send. “Before you start working on your app, make sure you know what you’re selling, what you’re about and the look and feel you want, like your logo colors and font,” Schneider says. “You also need to know what content you want to put in. You can integrate your app with your blog or your YouTube channel, but that only works if you have existing content.”2. Understand your audience. “Mobile applications are where people are going to interact with their favorite brands, but you have to know what your customers are interested in,” Schneider says. “Apps allow for new kinds of user experiences and a different community feel than the web, which results in real engagement and commerce opportunities. Fans and users spend more money in apps compared to websites, and they come back more. But you have to drive loyalty, whether that’s by pushing messages or having visual content.”3. Clarify what you want your app to achieve. “Whether or not an app is successful depends on the goal,” Schneider says. “Is it the total number of downloads, or how often people are coming back? How responsive are customers when offers are pushed out? How viral is your content? Or is it how many people are opting in and giving you their e-mail address?”4. Forget about BlackBerry, Win-dows Phone and Palm. As of June, Android controlled 40.1 percent of the U.S. smartphone market, and Apple’s iOS captured 26.6 percent market share. Both are growing each month. Their rivals are fading fast. “iPhone and Android are all that matters. Everything else is irrelevant,” Schneider says. “Entrepreneurs don’t have to think it’s one or the other. With Mobile Roadie, you can do the work once and launch your app on iPhone and Android. It’s not cost-prohibitive, so there’s no reason not to do both.”5. Fasten your seat belt. “Small businesses can really take advantage of the perception that apps are only for large companies,” Schneider says. “Home Depot has an app, but people don’t expect Joe’s Hardware to have an app. It’s an impressive thing for any business to have, like a website was 20 years ago. It sets your company apart, and it puts you on the same playing field as the big boys.” Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box.last_img read more

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first_img The DBI CL8MPS from Double Black Imaging Technology | December 01, 2008 EIZO Unveils 8 Megapixel Monitor Solutions for Medical Imaging Technology | Flat Panel Displays | May 17, 2019 Tru-Vu Monitors Releases New Medical-Grade Touch Screen Display Tru-Vu Monitors released the new MMZBTP-21.5G-X 21.5” medical-grade touch screen monitor. It is certified to both UL… read more Related Content LG Medical MonitorsLeveraging years of industry-leading expertise in flat-panel display technology, LG Business Solutions has expanded their medical imaging device portfolio of the most accurate displays possible.SharePlay VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 4:57Loaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%0:00 Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVERemaining Time -4:57 Playback Rate1ChaptersChaptersdescriptions off, selectedDescriptionssubtitles off, selectedSubtitlescaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedCaptionsdefault, selectedAudio TrackFullscreenThis is a modal window.Caption Settings DialogBeginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsDefaultsDoneClose Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. 50 Years of Innovative Visual TechnologyEIZO, which means image in Japanese, is a visual technology company that develops and manufactures high-end display solutions. 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News | Flat Panel Displays | June 18, 2019 Double Black Imaging Announces Expanded Display Line and Ergonomic Workstation Solutions Double Black Imaging (DBI) and their Image Systems Division are releasing their new clinical and diagnostic display… read more Feature | Flat Panel Displays | April 11, 2019 | By Melinda Taschetta-Millane Flat Panels to Help Enhance and Streamline Workflow The flat panel display market shows signs of maturing, however many new applications are available that can help to s read more News | Oncology Diagnostics | February 06, 2019 Oxford University Hospitals Employs Barco Synergi for Multi-disciplinary Cancer Conferences Oxford University Hospitals (OUH) is trialing clinical collaboration technology from Barco for its Multi-disciplinary… read more Technology | Flat Panel Displays | December 06, 2018 USEI Introduces Windows-Based iPad Medical Imaging Viewing Solution at RSNA 2018 U.S. Electronics Inc. (USEI) recently announced the release of what it calls the world’s first Windows-compatible… read more center_img Photo courtesy of US Electronics Feature | Flat Panel Displays | April 18, 2018 | Melinda Taschetta-Millane Flat Panel Display Market Outlook The global flat panel display market is predicted to reach $177.3 million by 2027, according to a new report titled “… read more December 1, 2008 – EIZO GmbH Display Technologies unveiled the release of two 8-megapixel color LCD monitor solutions for medical imaging, the RadiForce LS560W and the RadiForce LX560W, at the RSNA 2008. The RadiForce LS560W is a large widescreen monitor with a 3840 by 2160 native resolution and 56-inch screen and is reportedly ideally suited for vascular applications. The RadiForce LX560W is a digital video distribution system which bundles the RadiForce LS560W with EIZO’s new LMM 56800, a “Large Monitor Manager.” The LMM 56800 collects input signals from up to 27 different video sources, arranges this information according to customer demands, and then transmits this new combined picture to the 8 MP monitor. The RadiForce LS560W has a contrast ratio of 1200:1, brightness of 450 cd/m 2, and horizontal and vertical viewing angles of 176°. The large viewing area and resolution are approximately equal to that of six 1.3 megapixel (1280 by 1024) monitors without the distracting bezels. The 8 MP monitor offers fully automated brightness stability through EIZO’s ISS (Internal Stability System). A luminance uniformity correction function provides homogeneous brightness from one corner of the screen to the other. A smart integrated lookup and calibration feature saves time via five integrated and calibratable look-up tables which quickly and easily tailor the monitor to the application needs. For more information: FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 Technology | Flat Panel Displays | November 28, 2018 LG Unveils New Diagnostic Monitor, Digital X-ray Detectors at RSNA 2018 LG Electronics is expanding its U.S. medical imaging portfolio with a new high-performance 21-inch diagnostic monitor… read more Sponsored Content | Videos | Flat Panel Displays | September 26, 2018 LG Medical Monitors Leveraging years of industry-leading expertise in flat-panel display technology, LG Business Solutions has expanded t read more Photo courtesy of Barco Sponsored Content | Videos | Flat Panel Displays | December 25, 2018 VIDEO: 50 Years of Innovative Visual Technology EIZO, which means image in Japanese, is a visual technology company that develops and manufactures high-end display s read more Technology | Flat Panel Displays | March 30, 2018 Canvys Introduces New 27- and 32-inch 4K Ultra HD Displays Canvys, a Division of Richardson Electronics Ltd., recently enhanced its 4K Ultra HD custom display series of high-… read morelast_img read more

China defends Iranian oil imports

first_img Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Natural spring cleaning tips and tricks for your home Comments   Share   That leaves China alone among major importers of Iranian oil without a U.S. waiver. It has until June 28 to reduce its consumption of Iranian oil or face the penalties, unless it receives a national security waiver.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Top Stories Parents, stop beating yourself up New high school in Mesa lets students pick career pathscenter_img Sponsored Stories Quick workouts for men BEIJING (AP) – China is defending its Iranian oil imports but not saying whether it would be willing to reduce them to avoid U.S. sanctions against Chinese banks as part of Washington’s financial squeeze on Iran.Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said Tuesday that Beijing remains opposed to unilateral sanctions and has communicated its position to Washington.The Obama administration on Monday exempted India and six other governments from U.S. economic sanctions after they significantly reduced their imports of Iranian oil. More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, familylast_img read more

Decline of entrepreneurship blamed for Japan woes

first_imgAP Business WriterTOKYO (AP) – Worn out and resigned to its dwindling status, Japan Inc. is said to be quietly shuffling off the world stage. But don’t tell that to Kenji Hasegawa, who is ready to conquer the global auto market with his nifty innovation, a bolt that doesn’t need a nut. Or Chiaki Hayashi, who makes millions teaching big-name companies to be creative again.As different as they seem _ Hasegawa runs auto-parts supplier Lock’n Bolt Corp. and Hayashi is a rare woman to help found a Tokyo startup _ both highlight the potential of innovation and entrepreneurship in a nation that is often typecast as facing an unrelenting decline. Hayashi’s young business, Loftwork Inc., earned 900 million yen ($11 million) in annual sales taking a different but equally Japanese route as Hasegawa’s.She offers a service that stems from her diagnosis of the sickness at major companies _ the loss of the innovative spirit. She hopes to start a kernel of creativity going at companies that “starts small but snowballs.”Top Japanese companies have a load of talented hardworking people, but they have become so obsessed with rigidity like quality control in mass production that their thinking has grown static, and they can’t figure out where to start or how to change, she said.“The companies need our help because they’ve grown to be a giant Gundam robot that isn’t able to handle delicate innovations, which are like ants at its feet, and may instead squash them,” Hayashi said, referring to a Transformer-like robot.Saito, a son of Japanese immigrants to California, believes Japan Inc. has simply lost its entrepreneurial spirit. His assessment underlines a growing view among experts here.Saito’s own career took off when he was just a teenager, partly because management of major Japanese companies like Sony Corp. and NEC Corp. weren’t afraid to take risks in the past, even on a child prodigy like Saito, when he came up with fingerprint-recognition encryption for security. Top holiday drink recipes Saito says conformist Japan frowns upon failures, and doesn’t allow for second chances. Worse, Japan appears to be wallowing, when what it needs is action, Saito and others say. Even the rising yen, long cited as the death knell for an exporting economy such as Japan, should be reframed as an advantage, delivering bigger purchasing power for Japanese companies abroad.For some, Japan’s revival can come from re-inventing what it has long known best _ manufacturing, but with innovative ideas.As tiny as a nut-less bolt is, it has the potential to make Hasegawa, the supplier, rich. Much of machinery, including cars, ships and factory equipment, use bolts _ untold numbers of them. And so a bolt that doesn’t require a nut is a big timesaver.A nut-less bolt, based on the idea of a smaller bolt within a bolt, a patented secret, is also significantly lighter than a regular bolt, delivering cost-savings in fuel and raw materials and other perks like better mileage in a car.Hasegawa is talking with a long list of interested companies, including Panasonic Corp. and Toyota Motor Corp. He is looking into production outside Japan, perhaps Vietnam, he said.Hasegawa says the key to Japan’s revival lies in breakthroughs such as his that developed because of a legacy in “monozukuri,” which translates as “making things,” but is more akin to craftsmanship. More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family Of the decline, there is plenty of evidence.Long in the doldrums after its 1980s bubble economy burst, Japan has been eclipsed by China as the world’s second-biggest economy. Many of its consumer technology companies have been overtaken by South Korean competitors and are racking up huge losses. The number of young Japanese choosing to study abroad has dropped. And while Facebook lured hundreds of millions of members worldwide, management at Japanese social network Mixi never looked to grow overseas.The naysayers claim Japan is stagnating, only looking inward and squandering advantages such as its well-educated workforce, low crime rate and a rich history of technological prowess. But even while acknowledging big challenges that include its swollen national debt and rapidly greying population, Japan Inc.’s boosters say it can still rekindle the sparks of ingenuity that in the past delivered network-connecting mobile phones years before the arrival of smartphones, and made “instant noodles” part of the global diet for the last four decades.First though, Japan must recognize that what ails it is at least partly in the mind.“In order to have innovation, you must accept a certain amount of failure. To the Japanese, this has become taboo,” said William Saito, a prolific technology inventor who now runs a company that identifies up-and-coming innovators and tries to match them with investors. Comments   Share   Top Stories Parents, stop beating yourself up (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Quick workouts for men Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Follow Yuri Kageyama on Twitter at Sponsored Stories Microsoft Corp. licensed Saito’s core technology in 2000, and bought his company nine years ago, allowing him to technically retire.“But I’ve never been busier, doing a ton of different things, to really give back to society, and to reinvigorate the creative spirit and become a more entrepreneurial society again because it used to be here,” said Saito. “It’s just bringing it back. All the parts exist. It’s just a matter of how to execute that.”Saito, the computer whiz, has opened “Creative Lounge Mov,” in a fashionable shopping mall in Tokyo’s Shibuya, known as this nation’s Silicon Valley, complete with locker rooms, offices and sofas, to provide a place where venture types can exchange ideas and hook up with investors.He and others believe such ventures will nurture entrepreneurs, and in the longer term get Japan back in front.Despite being ahead in key technologies like the mobile Internet and electronic money, Japan saw its lead eroded by latecomers with more imagination, according to Gerhard Fasol, a consultant who works with Japanese companies.“Japan hasn’t woken up,” said Fasol.___last_img read more

Regal Airport Hotel awarded Best Airport Hotel in the World and AsiaP

first_imgSource = Regal Airport Hotel Ms. Renee Kim, Deputy General Manager of Regal Airport Hotel received the Best Airport Hotel in Asia-Pacific 2012 award from Ms. Frances Yip Lai-yee, famous Cantopop singer and the guest of honour of Business Traveller Asia-Pacific awards ceremony held in the Conrad Hotel Hong Kong on 28 Sep, 2012. Regal Airport Hotel was again awarded the Best Airport Hotel in Asia-Pacific by Business Traveller Asia-Pacific for the twelve consecutive year and the Best Airport Hotel in the World by Business Traveller UK edition for the fifth consecutive year.  Every year, Business Traveller Magazines invited the most discerning and experienced travellers worldwide to vote for their favourite performers in the travel and hospitality industries.  As such, the awards are considered as one of the most recognised among travellers and travel industry around the world. Between April and May 2012, Business Traveller UK dispatched 25,000 polling forms to their magazine subscribers while Business Traveller Asia-Pacific sent out polling forms to their subscribers from April to June this year, the response rate of the Business Traveller UK polling was 16% and the results were compiled by market research leader Business Intelligence Partnership. “The award is a recognition for our dedication to providing outstanding service has been recognised again. The hotel attributes this outstanding achievement to the joint efforts by hotel management team, associates and partners’ support to the success in our growing business.”, said Mr. John Girard, Area General Manager (Hong Kong) of Regal Hotels International and General Manager of the Regal Airport Hotel, Meeting & Conference Centre. Mr Girard added, “The continuing growth and development of the MICE management team is a strong testament to the success of our MICE business segment. This year and have just completed the renovation of additional two floors of Regal Club Rooms as well as the hotel ballroom that will be completed this fall. With access to the Regal Club Lounge, our guests will continue to benefit from a variety of exclusive privileges. center_img Newsreader, presenter and journalist Sir Trevor McDonald presented the Best Airport Hotel in the World 2012 award to Mr. John Girard, General Manager of Regal Airport Hotel, in London on 17 Sep, 2012. last_img read more

Macau goes strength to strength in 2015

first_imgAlready so early in the New Year, Macau is showing positive signs for a strong year filled with plenty of growth as a vital Asian centre for the MICE market.Since its establishment as a Special Administrative Region 15 years ago, the former Portuguese enclave has seen the rise of a vast number of contemporary additions – without losing sight of its five fascinating centuries of Chinese-European history.By the end of 2015, Macau’s Cotai area would have also seen the opening of the highly anticipated $US3.2 billion Hollywood-inspired Studio City, to be promoted in a new short film starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro and Brad Pitt.Nearby, Galaxy Macau will be extended to include three new international hotels including a 250-room all-suite Ritz-Carlton and Asia’s largest JW Marriott with over 1000 rooms and Broadway Hotel with a further 320 rooms.To complement the additional hotels, a new vibrant street, aptly named Broadway, will open complete with hawker style stores, bars and restaurants, live entertainment and world class performances inside a 3000-seat Broadway Theatre.Also due to open at the end of the year is the Parisian which will feature a smaller version of the Eiffel Tower, complete with observation deck and 200-seat restaurant.The prestigious Forbes Travel Guide also recognised Macau as the number destination in the world for five-star properties.Source = ETB Travel News: Lewis Wisemanlast_img read more

FICO Expands Program to Offer Financial Counseling

first_img in Daily Dose, Headlines, News, Origination FICO has announced it is expanding its Score Open Access program, which offers complimentary credit score access to consumers with credit management problems. Now, the program will also provide credit and financial counseling to approximately one million Americans.Announced earlier this week, FICO’s Score Open Access program will now become the Score Open Access for Credit & Financial Counseling.“The popular FICO Score Open Access program has now been extended to approximately one million people who seek assistance each year,” said Jim Wehmann, executive vice president for scores at FICO. “We consider this a major milestone in our effort to ensure that all Americans have convenient and free access to their FICO Scores.”The original program, which launched in November 2013, was designed to provide free credit score access to consumers with credit problems. It also offered credit education materials to teach consumers about scoring and responsible financial management.Though it will still provide these services, the program will now also provide consumers with access to financial counselors, as well as their credit reports. These reports will come from Experian, one of FICO’s credit bureau partners.”Experian is proud to join FICO and the nation’s credit counselors to lend our support through this important program for people experiencing financial difficulty,” said Genevieve Juillard, president of consumer information services at Experian. “It is our mission to be a champion of the consumer, and as the leading provider of consumer credit education and empowerment tools, we are proud to offer Experian’s credit reports in conjunction with the FICO Score to help struggling borrowers.”According to Sarah Chenven, director of programs and strategic initiatives at Credit Builders Alliance, the new, expanded program will give American families a better chance at financial success.”In today’s economy, a good credit history is essential for individuals and families to get and stay ahead,” Chenven said. “The ability to help underserved consumers in particular access their FICO Scores—and provide educational resources that identify the underlying financial behavior driving those scores—will strengthen nonprofit counselors’ and coaches’ toolkits, and may enhance their clients’ outcomes.”Wehmann said the idea for expanding Open Access came from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last year.”The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau first drew our attention to financial counselors’ need to share credit scores with consumers in early 2014 as part of the CFPB’s efforts to empower consumers,” Wehmann said. “Because of FICO’s longstanding commitment to consumer financial education, when the CFPB approached us about enabling credit and financial counselors to share FICO Scores they purchase with their clients, we recognized the importance of working with our data partners to make it happen.”Credit and financial counselors can choose to participate in the expanded Open Access program if eligible. Eligibility requirements and sign-up information can be found at April 24, 2015 431 Views Credit Scores FICO Lenders 2015-04-24 Seth Welborncenter_img Share FICO Expands Program to Offer Financial Counselinglast_img read more