VANCOUVER ANIMATION SECTOR PLANS FIRST ANIMATION FAM TOUR AND EXPANDS ANNUAL DIGITAL

first_img8th Annual Vancouver Digital Entertainment Career FairWhen: April 6, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.Where: Vancouver Convention Centre East, Ballrooms A, B and C, 999 Canada Pl. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Tickets and info: Free at Vancouvereconomic.comSpider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse winning the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature Film means even more global focus is turned toward Vancouver’s digital entertainment sector. The oft-reported pace of growth in film, TV, animation, VFX and gaming business in B.C. is indeed exceptional. Oscar love for locally based Sony Pictures Imageworks means even more business.The global entertainment industry backs winners. B.C. has them. And there are a lot of plans in motion to keep the machine well-oiled.According to the Vancouver Economic Commission, from 2012-2018 the VFX and animation sector nearly tripled from around $342 million to $960 million annually. The VEC projects that by the end of 2019 that figure will exceed 1 billion. These figures are preliminary as the final audits aren’t in, but little variation is expected. Setting right rumours that the B.C. film industry spending only recently surpassed Ontario’s, the VEC reports that it was 2012 when that happened (Ontario spent $1.28 billion versus $1.6 billion for B.C.).VEC film commissioner David Shepheard and animation and VFX expert Nancy Basi discussed some of the plans in place to keep growing the industry.First up is the first Animation FAM (familiarization) Tour. Titled the Vancouver-London Animation Business Exchange, it’s the first of its kind in the city’s history March 13-17, which sees representatives from such U.K. studios as Axis Animation (League of Legends, The Elder Scrolls); Lupus Films (The Hive Series, Ethel and Ernest); and Jellyfish Pictures (Star Wars) coming to Vancouver for a look around. This is the first outbound trip Film London has taken in five years. Shepheard previously was involved in the inbound versions of these FAM events. Spider-man: Into the Spider-verse. Miles gets his Spider-sense. ~ SONY PICTURES ANIMATION / PNG Facebookcenter_img Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

SWN returning to thump Wednesday Elsipogtog War Chief

first_img(Members of an RCMP tactical until involved in Oct. 17 raid on anti-fracking camp blocking SWN’s vehicles)APTN National NewsELSIPGOTOG FIRST NATION, NB–SWN Resources Canada is planning to resume its controversial shale gas seismic exploration work on Wednesday, according to Elsipogtog War Chief John LeviLevi said SWN’s lawyer Michael Connors, who is a partner with East Coast law firm McInnes Cooper, met with several dozen people from Elsipogtog First Nation and the surrounding communities late Sunday afternoon.Levi said Connors told the people that SWN would withdraw a lawsuit against several community members if the Houston-based firm was allowed to finish its exploration work unimpeded.“We said no, we are going to be there,” said Levi, in an interview with APTN National News. “What we told him was we are going to be there Wednesday.”The meeting was held at a longhouse erected at an anti-fracking encampment used over the past summer. The area sits off Hwy 116 near Elsipogtog First Nation.Connors told the people in the longhouse that SWN would be working for 14 days and warned them not to block the company’s movements or they would face violence.“I’m not asking anyone not to protest, but I am asking that we don’t do anything that would lead to violence,” said Connors, according to video of the meeting posted on Facebook by Brian Milliea. “Unfortunately, blockades lead to violence.”Connors said SWN just wants to finish its work and leave the area.“We don’t want violence and if we can get through two weeks then we will go away for awhile,” said Connors. “I am not saying we are not going to come back, we may not come back, but I think everybody needs some time, you know a break.”Levi told Connors that the community would not be backing down.“We are going to be there. Whatever happens, the ball is in your court. Whatever happens, you’re the ones who are going to make the calls,” said Levi, according to the nine minute video. “Us as Natives and the protectors of this land, we are going to protect it, it is our land, we never ceded this land and we are going to protect it before these waters are contaminated.”A woman in the crowd, who identified as non-Native, also pledged opposition to the exploration.“As non-Natives we are going to protect the future of our children,” said the woman, in the video. “So non-Natives and Natives are together.”SWN has faced intense and prolonged opposition to its shale gas exploration work around Elsipogtog First Nation which exploded after heavily armed RCMP tactical units raided an anti-fracking camp along Route 134 on Oct. 17. The camp was blocking several of SWN’s exploration vehicles in a compound owned by JD Irving Ltd. in Rexton, NB.While the raid freed SWN’s trucks, it sparked day-long clashes between Elsipogtog residents and the RCMP. Several RCMP vehicles were torched and about 40 people were arrested.A camp still remains on Route 134, which sits about 15 kilometres southeast of Elsipogtog.SWN was initially expected to resume its exploration work last Monday. Elsipogtog Chief Aaron Sock told reporters last Sunday that SWN’s lawyers had informed him the company was planning to finish its seismic exploration work along Hwy 11.While community members mobilized to confront the company, the thumper trucks, which are used in the seismic exploration, did not appear.Levi said Connors told the meeting that the company would be laying out geophones on a section of Hwy 11 on Tuesday and that the thumper trucks would return on Wednesday.Geophones pick up the vibrations from thumper trucks to create imaging of shale gas deposits.The exploration area is about 46 kilometres north of Elsipogtog.People in Elsipogtog and surrounding communities fear the discovery of shale gas would lead to hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The controversial extraction method is viewed by many as posing a dire threat to water sources.“They are pretty desperate for trying to arrange something like that,” said Levi. “We are not taking the bait and we are going to be there protecting mother earth.”news@aptn.calast_img read more

Egypts Grand Imam AlAzhar Says Polygamy Is Injustice to Women

Rabat – The grand imam of Egypt’s Al-Azhar Islamic Institution, Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, has said he believes that polygamy is often an injustice to women and children.”Al-Tayeb argued, “The practice is the result of a lack of understanding of the Qur’an and the tradition of the prophet.”He made the comments on his weekly television program and on Twitter. Al-Tayeb recited a verse from the Qur’an, Surah an-Nisa 4:3, which says that in order for a Muslim man to have multiple wives, he “must obey conditions of fairness—and if there is not fairness it is forbidden to have multiple wives.”Al-Tayeb explained, “We have to read the verse in full, and the part which says, ‘two, three and four wives,’ is only part of the verse, and not the entire verse, as having multiple wives oppresses the women and her children.”In his weekly television show on Friday, Al-Tayeb told viewers, “Those who say that marriage must be polygamous are all wrong.”The grand imam called for a broader revision in the way women’s issues are addressed.Over the weekend, social media commenters heavily debated Al-Tayeb’s remarks. The imam joined the debate, clarifying that he did not call for banning polygamy but for people to care more about women.“I do not call for legislation that abolishes the right of polygamy, but I reject any legislation that destroys the law of the Holy Qur’an or Sunnah,” he tweeted.“Women represent half of society. If we don’t care for them it’s like we are walking on one leg only,” he added. read more

Visa on arrival for 39 countries on hold

“Although arrangements were in place to issue visa on arrival for citizens of 39 countries we have now decided to hold it for the time being in consideration of the current security situation. Investigations have revealed foreign links to the attacks and we don’t want this facility to be abused,” noted Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Christian Religious Affairs, John Amaratunga. The visa on arrival pilot programme was part of a larger initiative to increase tourist arrivals to the country during the six month off-season period from May to October. The visa on arrival programme which was to be rolled out on May 1 has been put on hold in response to security concerns.Visa to enter Sri Lanka was to be granted to citizens of 39 countries on arrival in the country from May 1, 2019 on gratis basis as per a Cabinet decision earlier this month. However owing to the current security situation following the terror attacks on Easter Sunday, the government has decided to put the programme on hold until further notice. read more

UN pays tribute to detained abducted or missing staff

“It is particularly troubling that so few perpetrators have been prosecuted for crimes against United Nations staff,” Mr. Annan said in a message marking the International Day of Solidarity with Detained and Missing Staff Members. “Surely, the swift application of justice would be a real deterrent and a blow against such impunity.”The Day marks the armed abduction 18 years ago to the day of Alec Collett near Beirut Airport while on assignment for the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). The fate of Mr. Collett, a former journalist and Director of the UN Information Centre in Ghana, has never been determined.“Your efforts are especially timely at a moment when many of our colleagues are braving danger and difficulties in responding to the humanitarian needs of the conflict in Iraq,” Mr. Annan told the UN Staff Union on receiving his lapel pin from Mr. Collett’s wife Elaine at UN headquarters in New York. “But of course, quite apart from those hostilities, UN staff around the world face risks and threats every single day.”Mr. Annan called on Member States who have not yet done so to sign and ratify the 1994 Convention on the Safety of United Nations and Associated Personnel.At least 39 staff members of the UN family of organizations are currently missing or “disappeared” – possibly under arrest or being held in detention. read more

Sporting CP sack Zupo Equisoain after defeat against Porto

5.Madeira221219663:59447 1.Porto 222200676:50966 7.Aquas Santas211119534:53344 9.Belenenses227114605:64937 2.Sporting 221903728:54760 ← Previous Story Masters World Cup 2017 with homage to the first Olympic winners – Vlado Stenzel Next Story → Kasper Kvist to stay at HSG Wetzlar 13.SC Horta202414500:59928 8.Maia-Ismai217311566:60338 12.Arsenal224414589:66934 Sporting CP handball 10.AC Fafe227114559:64337 6.Avanca221039557:57745 Home defeat agianst unbeatable FC Porto 26:27, forced ambitious Management of Sporting Lisboa to finish cooperation with Spanish coach Zupo Equisoain.“We wish him the biggest personal and professional happiness”, wrote club in official statement.Professor Hugo Canela will work with the team on an interim basis, assisted by Professor Luís Cruz, technical coordinator of the training. André Teixeira will remain as goalkeeper coach.Sporting are currently on position No.2 in domestic Championship, but that obviosly isn’t enough for a strong roster made in Portugal last summer.STANDINGS: 4.ABC Braga201514663:54251 14.Sao Mamede 220319469:64125 3.Benfica221705663:54256 11.Boa Hora226214565:68936 read more

Villarreal sign defender Ramiro Funes Mori from Everton

first_imgEverton’s center-back player Ramiro Funes Mori has been signed to Villarreal after he spent three seasons at Goodison Park, the clubs have announced.Even though the transfer fee hasn’t been revealed, the 27-year-old Argentine deal is to last for four years with the La Liga club. ¡Bienvenido al #Villarreal!? El central argentino?? @funesmoriofi25 refuerza la zaga?⚽ del Submarino Amarillo. Llega procedente del @Everton y firma por cuatro temporadas. #BenvingutFunesMori Más info? https://t.co/d0oF1tT0Ie pic.twitter.com/EEapoZH7h9— Villarreal CF (@VillarrealCF) June 21, 2018Premier LeaguePremier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…Mori moved to Everton from River Plate in September 2015 for £11.6 million, making 67 appearances in all competitions for the club. But, a knee injury suffered in March 2017 saw him play in just four matches for the club after recovering.He was included in Jorge Sampaoli’s preliminary World Cup squad list but missed out when the team was cut to 23 for the finals in Russia.He has made 19 appearances for his country, scoring one goal.last_img read more

Charting new courses Student mariners prepare to navigate a warmer Arctic

first_imgGlenn Burleigh practices piloting a tanker with a damaged rudder. (Photo by Zoë Sobel, Alaska’s Eergy Desk – Unalaska)In a windowless room at Maine Maritime Academy, Glenn Burleigh is standing calmly at the controls of a massive tanker. He is stuck, encased in a sea of ice, waiting for an icebreaker to break him free.Listen NowWhen help arrives, the rescue doesn’t go as planned.“I think this is one of the situations where things do go wrong,” Burleigh said. “I seem to have lost my rudder.”Burleigh is one of nearly 1,000 students studying at Maine Maritime Academy. He hopes to one day captain a ship. Today is a preview of what that job might look like in the Arctic Ocean.The software is so detailed; you can hear the birds circling overhead. Just like a real ship. But without the danger.“I mean you can ask the people who ran the Titanic what the risks are associated with ice transit and you would have a pretty good understanding what that’s all about,” Capt. Ralph Pundt said.Pundt designed this polar navigation course with help from a Department of Homeland Security grant.Before teaching, Pundt served as a merchant marine captain and spent time working at both poles. His time sailing taught him how much he didn’t know. That lack of knowledge was dangerous.He said practicing in the simulator is a chance for real world experience, kind of.“There’s nothing like the real thing,” Pundt laughed. “It’s as close as you can get without being in the real thing. The nice thing is that stop-gap between basic book learning and having the responsibility of a multi-billion-dollar vessel. If they make mistakes, let them make the mistakes here.”The Northwest passage connects the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. (Image courtesy NASA)This class isn’t the only way to learn Arctic navigation. Pundt’s working on a more advanced version and AVTEC, the technical college in Seward, has one, too. These classes will get mariners up to speed for the Polar Code, which goes into effect in January. The international code requires additional training for mariners to protect ships, passengers, and crews operating in the harsh Arctic and Antarctic environments.Pundt said the Arctic Ocean today is a dramatically different place than when he was there 30 years ago.“We could not go through most of the ice up there without an icebreaker escort at that time,” Pundt said. “I talk to my students who transit up there and I say, ‘How is the ice this year?’ They say to me, ‘What ice?’ It’s that open now.”With less ice, Pundt said there’s a new set of risks. Mariners have to know what they’re up against.That’s what’s great about practicing in the simulator. With the click of a mouse, almost any situation becomes reality.“From here I can control weather,” Pundt said. “I can make things very nasty, very quickly here. How about some blowing snow? That’s Alaska weather right?”That’s part of why Burleigh signed up for Pundt’s class. With Arctic ice decreasing, more ships will transit the Northwest Passage. That could mean a growing job market, which Burleigh has his eyes on.“When that industry does open up more, I can walk in and say I’m already certified for this. You don’t have to send me back to school for it,” Burleigh said. “I’m ready to go right now. I’ve had experience doing simulations with ice and whatnot, so that puts me ahead of a normal third mate who hasn’t done anything with this.”Right now, the market is small and it’s unclear what the future holds for icebreakers. This summer, the cruise ship Crystal Serenity made a historic transit of the Northwest Passage with a personal icebreaker escort.Back on the bridge, success. Both ships have broken through the ice.Burleigh completed the course earlier this year and is one step closer to a future as an Arctic mariner. But his teacher, Pundt, questions if those jobs should even exist.“I’m not a fan of all this happening in the Arctic or in the Antarctic,” Pundt said. “I think it needs to remain pristine. If we do have to go up into the Arctic, we need to understand it and respect it for what it is.”With the class, Pundt wants to cultivate a new crop of mariners trained to navigate polar waters with minimal impact, even if he’s hoping they don’t have to go there at all.last_img read more

PM Hasina to brief media Sunday

first_imgPrime minister Sheikh HasinaPrime minister Sheikh Hasina will hold a press conference on Sunday about the outcome of her recent tri-nation visit to Japan, Saudi Arabia and Finland.It will be held at the prime minister’s official residence Ganabhaban at 5pm, reports UNB.The prime minister returned home on Saturday morning from Finland, wrapping up her tri-nation visit.On 28 May, the prime minister left Dhaka for Tokyo, the first destination of her tri-nation visit.During her four-day stay in Japan, the two countries signed the 40th ODA deal involving $ 2.5 billion after a bilateral meeting between Sheikh Hasina and her Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe.Besides, Sheikh Hasina attended the Nikkei International Conference on ‘The Future of Asia’ as a keynote speaker, joined a community reception accorded to her and attended a breakfast roundtable meeting with Japanese business leaders.Family members of the Japanese Holey Artisan victims and JICA president Shinichi Kitaoka also separately met Sheikh Hasina in Japan.On 31 May, the prime minister left Japan for Jeddah on a three-day official visit to Saudi Arabia to attend the 14th OIC Summit 2019 held in Makkah.During her stay in Saudi Arabia, she attended the 14th session of the OIC’s Islamic Summit, performed Umrah and offered Ziarat at the Rawza Mubarak of Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) in Medina.Sheikh Hasina went to Finland on 3 June on a five-day visit, the final destination of her tri-nation visit.During her stay, she had a meeting with Finnish president Sauli Niinisto on 4 June and joined a community reception accorded to her by All European Awami League on 5 June.last_img read more

UPDATE Sessions Denies Lying On Russia Pleads Hazy Memory

first_img1. The Russia tightropeAt his confirmation hearing in January, Sessions testified, “I’m not aware” of communications between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. In October, at a hearing in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the attorney general said he didn’t have talks with Russians as a surrogate for then-candidate Trump: “I did not, and I’m not aware of anyone else that did. I don’t believe that happened.”What’s more, another person at the table that day, J.D. Gordon, said he does remember Papadopoulos floating the idea of a conversation between Trump and Putin. But, Gordon said, Sessions shot down the idea.“These facts appear to contradict your sworn testimony on several occasions,” House Democrats wrote Sessions last week.In other words, the attorney general will be walking a tightrope: reckoning his inability to remember those events with his denials of Russian outreach to the Trump campaign. And it’s never a good thing when the top law enforcement officer in the country faces persistent questions about his credibility.2. Boundaries with the White HouseTrump recently told a radio interviewer he was “very frustrated” with the Justice Department and wishes he were able to direct the DOJ and the FBI to investigate his political opponent, Hillary Clinton, among other things.“The saddest thing is that, because I’m the president of the United States, I am not supposed to be involved with the Justice Department,” Trump told WMAL in Washington, D.C. “I am not supposed to be involved with the FBI.”Now it appears the Justice Department is indeed looking into the matter.But already this year, Trump’s White House has repeatedly pushed the boundaries of the Justice Department’s historical, post-Watergate independence. The president asked his former FBI Director James Comey to go easy on an investigation of then-national security adviser Michael Flynn, Comey later testified. Trump floated the idea of dropping a prosecution against another ally, former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, whom the president went onto pardon. White House counselor Kellyanne Conway traveled to the Justice Department to watch a news conference unveiling criminal charges against Chinese fentanyl sellers.And last week, the top executive at AT&T, Randall Stephenson, said the company was preparing to litigate after the Justice Department signaled it wanted tough conditions to approve the company’s merger with Time Warner. Those conditions could include the divestiture of DirecTV or the sale of CNN, which the president has criticized as “fake news.”Both Trump and the Justice Department said the antitrust decision was made without interference from the White House. But Democrats and some DOJ veterans said those assertions are difficult to square with a pattern of breaches already this year.3. Reviews from the audienceAs attorney general, Sessions will be speaking to multiple audiences.They include his former colleagues on Capitol Hill, where he served as a Republican senator from Alabama; the 100,000-odd lawyers, investigators and staff members who work for the U.S. Justice Department; and perhaps, most importantly, his boss, President Trump.Six lawyers who have spent years in and outside the Justice Department described morale in the institution as poor, after a series of critical comments and tweets from Trump this year, and the attorney general’s public silence in the face of them.As for the president, he has made Sessions a frequent target of his ire, especially since the attorney general recused himself from the Russia probe in March and a special counsel was named to take over that investigation.“Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else,” Trump told the New York Times in July.The president will be returning from his long trip to Asia on Tuesday, giving him time to formulate some views of Sessions’s appearance before the House Judiciary Committee, and perhaps to share them on Twitter.Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. 10:45 a.m.Attorney General Jeff Sessions says that he does not remember speaking to Carter Page during the 2016 presidential campaign about a trip that the former foreign policy campaign adviser took to Russia.Page told the House intelligence committee earlier this month that he had informed some members of the Trump campaign about the trip, including Sessions. He said he mentioned in passing to Sessions that he was visiting Russia and Sessions had no reaction.Page’s trip has drawn scrutiny in probes of Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign.Sessions said he doesn’t challenge Page’s recollection, but doesn’t remember the conversation. He said the Trump campaign “was a brilliant campaign in many ways. But it was a form of chaos every day from day one.”___10:45 a.m.Attorney General Jeff Sessions says the Justice Department “can never be used to retaliate politically against opponents.”Sessions’ statement was in response to questions from members of the House Judiciary Committee asking about President Donald Trump’s tweets suggesting that Sessions investigate Democratic rivals.Sessions on Monday left open the possibility that a special counsel could be appointed to look into Clinton Foundation dealings and an Obama-era uranium deal.But before the committee Tuesday, he denied Trump has influenced his decision-making. Sessions says that would be improper.Sessions told the committee: “I have not been improperly influenced and would not be improperly influenced” despite the president’s “bold” comments.___10:22 a.m.Attorney General Jeff Sessions says he thinks he told former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos that he wasn’t authorized to represent the campaign with the Russian government.Papadopoulos has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about foreign contacts. He was part of a foreign policy council that Sessions chaired, and charging documents in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation indicate that Papadopoulos told the council that he could help arrange a meeting between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.An attendee at the meeting recalled that Sessions quickly shut the conversation down.Sessions said that to his recollection, “I believe that I wanted to make clear to him that he was not authorized to represent the campaign with the Russian government, or any other foreign government, for that matter.”___4:17 a.m.Attorney General Jeff Sessions is leaving open the possibility that a special counsel could be appointed to look into Clinton Foundation dealings and an Obama-era uranium deal. The Justice Department made the announcement Monday in responding to concerns from Republican lawmakers.In a letter to the House Judiciary Committee, which is holding an oversight hearing Tuesday, the Justice Department said Sessions had directed senior federal prosecutors to “evaluate certain issues” raised by Republican lawmakers. President Donald Trump has also repeatedly called for investigations of Democrats.The prosecutors will report their findings to Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.For Attorney General Jeff Sessions, an appearance before the House Judiciary Committee Tuesday presents a risk — and an opportunity.The risk lies in testifying under oath, for the fourth time this year, about his awareness of Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 election while he served as a top surrogate for President Trump.The opportunity stems from his interrogators — a committee led by Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., who’s been reluctant to pile on Sessions this year. Other GOP members of the panel are die-hard Trump supporters who have suggested firing special counsel Robert Mueller, the man leading the ongoing criminal investigation.On the eve of the hearing, Sessions appeared to throw those Republicans — and his boss — a bone. The Justice Department sent a letter Monday night informing Goodlatte that it had directed senior federal prosecutors to evaluate “whether any matters merit the appointment of [another] special counsel.” Earlier this year, Goodlatte had demanded a DOJ investigation into “alleged unlawful dealings at the Clinton Foundation” and other scandals focused on Democrats.There’s a twist, though: Sessions has already promised to recuse himself from any investigations into Hillary Clinton or the Clinton Foundation, given his campaign role. So the letter may raise yet another sensitive area on a hearing agenda already packed with them.Here’s what to watch for in Tuesday’s hearing: THE LATEST on testimony by Attorney General Jeff Sessions (all times local):Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in a raised voice and animated tone, told Congress on Tuesday he never lied under oath about Russian interference in the 2016 election and suggested that sleep deprivation and the “chaos” of the Trump campaign clouded his recollections of campaign contacts with Russians.In more than five hours of testimony, Sessions sought to explain away apparent contradictions in his public statements by portraying President Donald Trump’s campaign as an exhausting operation and said he could not be expected to remember specific encounters from more than a year ago. But he did say that recent media reports have triggered in him a memory, which he had not previously revealed, of a conversation with a campaign adviser last year about a proposed Russian government meeting.“In all of my testimony, I can only do my best to answer all of your questions as I understand them and to the best of my memory,” Sessions told the House Judiciary Committee. “But I will not accept, and reject, accusations that I have ever lied. That is a lie.”The oversight hearing divided along stark partisan lines. Republicans questioned Sessions about the Justice Department’s openness to the idea of a special counsel to investigate Clinton Foundation dealings and an Obama-era uranium deal, while Democrats grilled him on the evolving explanations about his own foreign contacts about how much he knew of communication during the campaign between Trump associates and Russian government intermediaries.Sessions, who recounted an exchange with one adviser but did not remember another conversation he was said to have had, led a foreign policy council during the Trump campaign and has struggled since January to move past questions about his knowledge of Russian outreach efforts during the election effort.Those questions have only deepened since the guilty plea last month of George Papadopoulos, a former Trump adviser who served on the council Sessions chaired and who proposed in Sessions’ presence arranging a meeting between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. As well, another aide, Carter Page, told Congress in private statements that he had alerted Sessions about a meeting he planned in Russia during the campaign.Sessions said he had no recollection of the conversation with Page. And he said that though he did not initially recall a March 2016 conversation with Papadopoulos, he now believes after seeing media reports about it that he told Papadopoulos that he was not authorized to represent the Trump campaign with the Russian government or any other foreign government.Papadopoulos was arrested by the FBI and pleaded guilty to lying to authorities about his own foreign contacts during the campaign.“After reading his account and to the best of my recollection,” Sessions said, “I believe that I wanted to make clear to him that he would not authorize to represent the campaign with the Russian government or any other foreign government for that matter.“But I did not recall this event which occurred 18 months before my testimony of a few weeks ago,” he added, “and I would gladly have reported it had I remembered it because I pushed back against his suggestion that I thought may have been improper.”Sessions insisted that his story had never changed and that he had never been dishonest. But he also suggested to the committee that it was unfair to expect him to recall “who said what when” during the campaign.“It was a brilliant campaign, I think, in many ways, but it was a form of chaos every day from day one,” Sessions said. “We traveled some times to several places in one day. Sleep was in short supply and I was still a full-time Senator … with a very full schedule.”The oversight hearing came one day after the Justice Department said Sessions had directed federal prosecutors to look into whether a special counsel might be merited to investigate allegations that the Clinton Foundation benefited from an Obama-era uranium transaction involving a Russia-backed company.On Tuesday, Sessions said that any such review would be done without regard to political considerations.“A president cannot improperly influence an investigation,” Sessions said in response to questions from the committee’s top Democrat, Rep. John Conyers of Michigan.“And I have not been improperly influenced and would not be improperly influenced,” he added. “The president speaks his mind. He’s bold and direct about what he says, but people elected him. But we do our duty every day based on the law and the facts._____Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Tuesday he is unfamiliar with an FBI report about black extremists that has alarmed some lawmakers. The revelation prompted an uncomfortable exchange for the nation’s top prosecutor, whose political career has been dogged by questions about race.The 12-page FBI intelligence assessment, written in August, describes “black identity extremist” groups the FBI says are increasingly targeting law enforcement after police killings of black men, including Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014. Foreign Policy first reported on the assessment, which drew outrage from some black lawmakers.Rep. Karen Bass, a Los Angeles Democrat, pressed Sessions on the report during an oversight hearing of the House Judiciary Committee, explaining that activists are concerned they’ll be unfairly labeled for protesting.“Do you believe there is a movement of African-Americans that identify themselves as black identity extremists, and what does that movement do?” she asked.Sessions said he hadn’t seen the findings of the report but added: “I’m aware that there are groups that do have an extraordinary commitment to their racial identity, and some have transformed themselves even into violent activists.”He struggled to answer when asked the same about white groups.“It’s not coming to me at this moment,” he said. Bass pointed to the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazism. Sessions said he didn’t know whether the FBI had similar intelligence assessments on those groups. Nor would he say whether the group Black Lives Matter, which often rallies after racially charged encounters with police, is an “extremist group.”“I have not so declared it,” he said.The exchange was significant for Sessions, a Republican former Alabama senator who has faced questions about race throughout decades of public life, including during his confirmation hearings this year. Allegations of racially charged comments cost him a federal judgeship in the 1980s. And while he has described the accusations as hurtful and unfair, civil rights groups remain skeptical about his commitment to their interests. Many of his changes to department policy have been favorable to local law enforcement groups, which are among his strongest allies.Bass asked what he would do to protect the rights of those who protest police.“This department will not unlawfully target people,” he said.___center_img Sharelast_img read more

Houston Business Recruiter Many Still See Houston As A OneIndustry City

first_imgFlorian Martin/Houston Public MediaSusan Davenport, senior vice president of economic development at the Greater Houston Partnership, says one big challenge is to educate people in other cities about Houston’s economic diversity. Listen There is no doubt that Houston’s economy heavily relies on its oil and gas industry.But things have changed since the 1980s, when energy accounted for the vast majority of the region’s economy. Today, it is much more diversified.Health care, transportation, manufacturing, aerospace and high tech are just some examples of Houston’s major industry sectors.However, that reality still hasn’t reached all parts of the country, said Susan Davenport, senior vice president of economic development at the Greater Houston Partnership.“It was misunderstood, it was always thought of as a city with one industry sector and that’s all we did,” she said. “We’re proud of being the energy capital of the world, but we are diversifying our economy.”Davenport’s job is to communicate this to businesses around the nation and world as she is trying to recruit them to move here.The GHP hired data analytics firm McKinsey to identify industries that would be most fit for business recruitment.The firm came up with five sectors, Davenport said: headquarters, digital technology, life sciences, energy 2.0 and advanced manufacturing.“Many of those sectors are ones that in the traditional sense we have great opportunities and a great structure here in Greater Houston already underway,” she said. “What we’re doing is leveraging that and we’re taking that to the next level as we look at the future opportunities surrounding those industry targets and sectors.”What businesses look for most in a location is talent, Davenport said, and in particular future talent. That’s why the GHP focuses a lot on education, she said.“It’s because we know that when companies are coming in here to make an investment in the Greater Houston region, they are looking at the future, right?” she said. “They don’t want to be here for a couple of years. They’re putting in place roots that they want to see grow for the future.”Reasonable cost of living and cost of doing business as well as quality of life are also important factors, she said.Click on the audio above to listen to the interview. Xcenter_img Share To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: 00:00 /03:56last_img read more

Avegant plans to show headset with virtual retinal display at CES

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Avegant plans to show headset with virtual retinal display at CES (2013, December 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-12-avegant-headset-virtual-retinal-ces.html While the headset looks like another member of the goggles crop breaking on to the digital scene, where users attach some sort of wearable screens to their face, the Glyph stands out as the Glyph display projects light directly into your eye. He said the reason why they adopted that concept is because they are actually mimicking natural vision. Images just seem more realistic, vivid, natural and comfortable, unlike watching a cellphone or notebook computer all day, he remarked, “When I put this on,” he added, in placing the Glyph on his face, “the amount of depth is incredible….feels like I am looking out a window.”A Virtual Retinal Display uses a micromirror array and combination of optics to reflect an image directly onto the retina; the “screen” becomes the back of the eyeball. The picture comes across as sharp and vivid, and 3D images are exceptionally clear. One of the FAQ listed on the company’s site asks, “Is it safe?” Yes, is the given answer. “The light source is simply a low powered Light Emitting Diode (LED) – something like you would see at the end of a keychain light. The micromirror array and optics together create the unique image.”Looking into the device, the user sees an image that appears as an 80-inch screen eight feet away from the user. That translates, according to Avegant, to about a 45-degree field of view.Tang described his company as a startup intent on bringing out a “portable media platform.” According to the company, “Glyph can plug into any HDMI source and display any current content natively. This means sources from an XBox to a Playstation to a MacBook to an iPhone to an Android may be used while content from Blueray DVDs to video games to streaming movies can be watched.” More information: www.avegant.com/avegant-introd … -display-technology/ Dynamically reconfiguring images with flexible OLED FlexCam (w/ Video)center_img (Phys.org) —Ann Arbor, Michigan-based Avegant on Wednesday announced that a Kickstarter campaign will launch on January 22 on behalf of its product Glyph, a $499 headset. Glyph is also to go on display at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas from January 7 to 10. The shipped version will have one HDMI/MHL cable, and onboard battery power. The Glyph is a headset that integrates video display and audio experiences in a flip-down form factor. The result is a wearable display doubling as a set of headphones. The form factor, however, is not the most notable aspect of the product. CEO Ed Tang explained what he thinks is so special about Glyph, and that is a technology called virtual retinal display. © 2013 Phys.org Explore furtherlast_img read more

Egypt opposition fears violence from Brotherhood

first_imgThe scene from bloody clashes outside the presidential palace a week ago hangs over Egypt’s political crisis as a daunting sign of how much more violent the confrontation could become between Morsi’s Islamist supporters and the opposition that has launched a giant wave of protests against him.Opponents of Morsi accuse his Muslim Brotherhood supporters of unleashing highly trained cadres _ fired up with religious slogans _ to crush their political rivals. They fear last week’s violence was a signal that the Brotherhood will use force to push its agenda and defend its political gains in the face of a persistent protest movement demanding that Morsi withdraw a draft constitution largely written by his Islamist allies.Ahead of new mass rallies by both sides Tuesday, masked gunmen attacked anti-Morsi protesters in Cairo’s central Tahrir Square before dawn, firing birdshot at them and wounding nine. It was unclear who was behind the attack, said security officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the press.Officials from the Brotherhood and its political party deny using violence to quell critics. Regarding the clashes last Wednesday, the worst violence yet in the crisis, they say Morsi supporters were defending the palace and accuse the protesters of starting the battles. They claim their side suffered more deaths and injuries during the clashes, which left at least eight people dead. More broadly, the Brotherhood accuses former regime supporters of paying thugs in an organized campaign to topple Islamists from power, pointing to a series of attacks on Brotherhood offices the past weeks. As news of the attack spread, more anti-Morsi protesters arrived on the scene. Buses, seen parked nearby, brought in Brotherhood supporters. By sunset a full-fledged street battle transformed Heliopolis into a war zone, spreading over at least three fronts near the palace. Protesters and witnesses put the number of Morsi supporters at up to 12,000 compared to several thousand protesters.At the height of the fighting, leading Brotherhood member Essam el-Erian went on Misr 25, a TV station affiliated with the group to call on Morsi supporters to go to the scene “in the tens of thousands to besiege those thugs because now is the moment to arrest them” and expose the conspiracy. He called the protesters counter-revolutionaries who want to carry out “a coup against legitimacy.”Bearded men in short robes waved sticks in the air as they chased groups of young men and women down darkened alleys while gunfire echoed in the background.A resident of a building overlooking one front line said Morsi supporters appeared to be operating by what a well-rehearsed plan. They came prepared with metal sheets for barricades and motorcycles with small trailers attached brought loads of stones to pelt protesters with. The resident spoke on condition his name not be used for fear of retribution. Some Morsi supporters were armed with rifles, firing from the edges of the front lines to avoid being detected, said Mahmoud Zaghloul, a 22-year old protester who got hit with a rock in his head. He also said many in the Morsi camp came prepared with helmets with plexi-glass face screens.At least one video shown on a private TV station shows a man in the Morsi camp, wearing a full helmet, taking a professional shooter position, bending his knees and aiming with a rifle.“One of the most disturbing things was how they chanted `God is Great’ as they aimed at us,” as if they were firing at infidels, Zaghloul said.Some in the anti-Morsi camp also had firearms, witnesses said. At least one amateur video circulating online that showed an anti-Morsi protester pointing a pistol from behind a barricade at the opposing camp.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Associated PressCAIRO (AP) – They showed a military-style precision: Crowds of bearded Islamists proclaiming allegiance to Egypt’s President Mohammed Morsi and chanting “God is great” as they descended on tents set up by anti-Morsi protesters outside the presidential palace, swinging clubs, firing rifles and calling for burning down the opposition. They set up a detention facility, interrogating and beating captured protesters. One of the victims, Yehia Negm, an Egyptian diplomat, told AP he was dragged on the ground to the center where he was beaten. He is suffering from multiple injuries in the head, eye, nose, and ribs from beating and had remains of pellets in his forehead from gunfire during the clashes.“When they found my ID that says a diplomat, they started accusing me of working with security agencies, of being a spy and of serving foreign countries,” Negm said. “They rained beatings down on me. They started yelling at me, saying, `You infidels, you want to burn the country down, you are not Muslims.’”Around 20 Islamists manned the center, made up of metal barricades erected against the palace wall, said Mohammed Elgarhy, a local journalist with the daily Al-Masry Al-Youm who snuck in and spent nearly four hours there. Among them was a man he recognized as a well-known Brotherhood lawyer and two others he overheard speaking with a Brotherhood leader. The others, who he said he believed were Brotherhood members, carried out the beatings and interrogations.“The Brotherhood were carrying out the job of the Interior Ministry,” Elgarhy told AP. “They would arrest anyone they suspected … asking them questions such as who paid for you to come here.” Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generation Check your body, save your life Troops from the Central Security Forces guarded the site, but did not interfere, he said. The Brotherhood has not addressed accusations about the detention center but says it did seize protesters and hand them over to police.The violence came a day after hundreds of thousands marched on the palace in Cairo’s upper middle class district of Heliopolis, demanding Morsi withdraw the draft constitution and sweeping powers that he had given himself in a series of decrees.After the rally, several dozen protesters remained in the tent camp. In response, the Brotherhood called a “general mobilization” of its members, and its spokesman said the group will protect the legitimacy of the president and state institutions.The next day, last Wednesday, the lines of Islamists stormed the camp, chanting “God is great” and “Islamic law is fundamental in Egypt,” as they tore down tents and chased away the protesters. They then ransacked the tents. Brotherhood supporters claimed they found evidence of drug use at the camp _ though they never showed any _ and that burnt charcoal and processed cheese in the tents proved the protest was foreign funded, without explanation. The accusations were reminiscent of those leveled by the regime of ousted President Hosni Mubarak against the protesters who rose up against his rule in early 2011. 4 sleep positions for men and what they meancenter_img Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Top Stories Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Opponents of the Brotherhood frequently accuse the group of running a “militia.” The group is known for its tight discipline, and it acknowledges that many of its young members undergo organized martial arts training _ but it vehemently denies forming any militias.Tharwat el-Kherbawy, a former Brotherhood member and now an opponent of the group, said the Brotherhood’s central organizational doctrine _ calling on members to “hear and obey” their leaders _ gives it a military-like structure.When the Brotherhood met a stronger than expected protest movement, “they had no hesitation in hastening to implement their ideas and resorting to violence,” he said. “If their empowerment project is facing resistance, this resistance must be quelled.”The Dec. 5 showdown was the fiercest display of the Brotherhood’s strength, but similar, smaller attacks on opponents by Brotherhood members took place at least three times earlier this year when secular and liberal groups criticized the Brotherhood’s grip on power.During last Wednesday’s fighting, nearly 140 anti-Morsi protesters were tortured and interrogated at a makeshift detention center set up by the Brotherhood along the walls of the presidential palace, according to witnesses. The detained protesters were filmed making forced confessions that they had received foreign funds, according to some who were held and an Egyptian journalist who snuck into the site. Comments   Share   “The group and the party don’t use violence and have no inclination to the use of violence,” said Mourad Aly, a Brotherhood party spokesman. He added, “We will never allow an attack or breach on the palace.”However, when last week’s violence began, the only protesters outside the palace were several dozen people conducting a sit-in in the tents, and the allegiances of those killed remain controversial. Opponents and rights lawyers charge that the Brotherhood has tried to persuade some families to declare their deceased sons as Brotherhood.Testimonies and videos that have emerged from the nearly 15 hours of street clashes show an organized group of disciplined Islamists, working in units and carrying out military-type exercises as they broke up the tent sit-in at the palace.In one video posted online, thousands of Islamists lined up on a main boulevard near the palace, chanting “Power, Resolve, Faith, Morsi’s men are everywhere,” and chanting calls of burning down the opposition _ then they assaulted the camp.The exact circumstances of the online videos could not be independently confirmed, but their contents were consistent with Associated Press reporting.last_img

Israeli bank chief warns about demographic economic fallout

first_img Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Sponsored Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona A separate Finance Ministry report warns that these trends could lead Israel toward Greece-style bankruptcy. The report says that if Israel fails to integrate the ultra-Orthodox and Arabs into the workforce, government revenues will increasingly lag behind spending as tax revenues shrink.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement The difference between men and women when it comes to pain Top Stories JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s central bank chief said Monday that demographic changes such as aging and the growth of Arab and ultra-Orthodox Jewish populations were threatening the country’s long-term growth prospects and called for a continued increase in their employment.Karnit Flug said the low employment rate among ultra-Orthodox men and Arab women in particular was hindering growth and while both segments were showing increased employment, without a drastic change Israel would suffer compared to other developed nations. Natural spring cleaning tips and tricks for your home Arabs make up about 20 percent of Israel’s 8 million citizens. The ultra-Orthodox are about 10 percent. Both are among the fastest-growing segments of society. The bank’s demographic forecast predicts that within 50 years, Israel’s non-ultra-Orthodox Jewish population will drop from the 70 percent to just 50 percent.Ultra-Orthodox men often avoid the workforce and collect welfare stipends while continuing to study religion full time. Due to its high birthrates and unemployment, the ultra-Orthodox community is among the poorest in Israel. Ultra-Orthodox leaders insist their young men serve the nation through prayer and study, thus preserving Jewish learning and heritage. They say outside forces are putting their ancient brand of Judaism under siege and that integration into the secular military and workforce will undermine their lifestyle.The previous government passed landmark legislation that aimed to gradually incorporate the ultra-Orthodox into the military and boost their employment figures. Now, with the insular ultra-Orthodox parties back in government, they are determined to roll back those measures.Arabs, meanwhile, complain of poor education systems and lack of employment opportunities compared to Israeli Jews. Comments   Share   last_img read more

Destination Turkey Workshop aims at increasing Indian footfalls to Turkey

first_imgThe Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism in collaboration with the Association of Turkish Travel Agents and Turkish Hoteliers Federation, conducted an eight-city roadshow titled ‘Destination Turkey Workshop’ for the travel trade in India. The roadshow was held in Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Lucknow, Delhi, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Chennai. The workshop saw an attendance of 35 participants from Turkey comprising of leading travel agents and hoteliers besides Turkish Airlines.The roadshow received an overwhelming response as more than 150 agents attended in each city. Apart from the valuable B2B interactions, more than 100 frontline staff from various travel agencies participated in the ‘Destination Turkey Trainings’ conducted by the Ministry.The workshop began with a welcome address by Ozgur Ayturk, Coordinator, Ministry of Culture and Tourism Turkey. A destination presentation was also conducted by Association of Turkish Travel Agencies which focused on Turkey as an ideal destination for leisure, honeymooners and golf.Sevgi Yildirim, Culture and Tourism Expert, Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism General Directorate of Promotion was present and gave a detailed destination presentation. A presentation was also given by Arjun Kapoor, Regional Sales Representative – Northern & Eastern India, Turkish Airlines.Talking about the Indian market, Ozgur Ayturk said, “India is a very important market for us and we have seen a good response from India over the years. The eight-city roadshow was conducted to increase destination awareness and highlight the new attractions in Turkey. We hope this event will also add positive impact and further increase the Indian footfall to Turkey.”last_img read more

January 2 2007 A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE

first_imgJanuary 2, 2007 A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE. Staff and volunteers at Arcosanti had a very nice Christmas. Christmas Eve was celebrated at the Begin-Tollas residence in one of the Foundry apartments. A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE. Staff and volunteers at Arcosanti had a very nice Christmas. Christmas Eve was celebrated at the Begin-Tollas residence in one of the Foundry apartments. [Photos: Andrea Paneghetti & text: sa] A wonderful array of Christmas delicacies, fun games for the kids and adults, thoughtful presents, made it a very cosy event. Christmas Day began with a delicious breakfast prepared by Ron Chandler, who started this tradition a few years ago. And everyone met for a big pot-luck dinner at the EC3 household. [Photos: Andrea Paneghetti & text: sa]last_img read more

Electricity price hikes highest in the EU

first_imgCyprus household electricity prices rose 22 per cent rise in the 12 months to June, the biggest increase in the EU, according to the EU’s statistical agency, Eurostat.Across the EU member states, the highest increase in household electricity prices in national currency between the first half of 2016 and the first half of 2017 was registered in Cyprus followed by Greece at 12.8 per cent.Belgium was third with 10 per cent, followed by Poland, 6.9 per cent, Sweden, 5.5 per cent, and Spain, 5.1 per cent.Across the EU, household electricity prices fell slightly, -0.5 per cent on average, between the first half of 2016 and the first half of 2017, reaching €20.4 per 100 kWh.The most noticeable drops were observed in Italy, -11.2 per cent, Croatia, -10.2 per cent, and Lithuania, -9.3 per cent.Household electricity prices in the first half of 2017 ranged from below €10 per 100 kWh in Bulgaria, to more than €30 per 100 kWh in Denmark and Germany.Expressed in euro, average household electricity prices in the first half of 2017 were lowest in Bulgaria, €9.6 per 100 kWh, Lithuania, €11.2, and Hungary, €11.3. The highest were recorded in Denmark and Germany, both €30.5, followed by Belgium, €28.0. In Cyprus it was €18.6.The average electricity price in the EU was €20.4 per 100 kWhYou May LikeLuxury Crossover SUV I Search AdsThese SUVs Are The Cream Of The Crop. Search For 2019 Luxury Crossover SUV DealsLuxury Crossover SUV I Search AdsUndoDr. Marty ProPower Plus Supplement3 Dangerous Foods People Feed Their Dogs (Without Realizing It)Dr. Marty ProPower Plus SupplementUndoYahoo SearchThe Early Signs Of Type 2 Diabetes. Search Type 2 Diabetes TreatmentsYahoo SearchUndo Concern over falling tourism numbersUndoTurkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoOur View: Argaka mukhtar should not act as if he owns the beachUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more

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While the geopolitics of Asia look relatively stable in 2016especially compared to other hot spotstheres no shortage of conflicts simmering beneath the surface. Chouhan noted.000–cash, It should be refunded to the family and if this doesn’t happen. read more