First Day of Ramadan in North America is Saturday FCNA

New York – According to a press release by the Fiqh Council of North America the first day of Ramadan of this year is June 28.As in previous years, the Fiqh Council of North America bases its decision on astronomical calculations, rather than on the traditional sighting of the moon with naked eyes.The Fiqh Council of North America recognizes astronomical calculation as an acceptable Shar’ia method for determining the beginning of Lunar months including the months of Ramadan and Shawwal. FCNA uses Makkah al-Mukarram (Mecca) as a conventional point and takes the position that the conjunction must take place before sunset in Makkah and moon must set after sunset in Mecca. On the basis of this method the dates of Ramadan and Eidul Fitr for the year 1435 AH are established as follows:1st of Ramadan will be on Saturday June 28, 2014.1st of Shawwal will be on Monday, July 28, 2014While the astronomical calculations are accepted by some countries, it is still a hotly debated issue, since many cling to the traditional sighting of the moon with naked eyes, as set out in the Holy Quran.The calculations of the Islamic calendar are based on the lunar calendar, which causes the Islamic months to move in the Gregorian calendar approximately 11 days every year. The beginning of Islamic months may also vary from one country to another depending on whether the moon has been sighted or not.© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed read more

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British Government Urges Its Citizens to Leave Tunisia Immediately

Rabat – The United Kingdom Foreign Office has reportedly urged all British tourists in Tunisia to leave the North African country immediately, citing safety reasons.Following the terrorist attack in Sousse that claimed the lives of 38 people, including 30 Britons, Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond urged all the British nationals to leave Tunisia, saying, “a further terroristic attack is highly likely.”The Foreign Office allegedly expressed concerns about the effectiveness of new security measures put in place by the Tunisian government after the Sousse attack. A report by Daily Mail says that the first thousands of British holidaymakers have returned home from Tunisia after the warning was issued on Thursday.The Foreign Office estimated the number of British nationals in Tunisia numbers 3,000 tourists and a few hundred British residents. It said that extra flights have been planned to evacuate them.The British government stated it does not have any information suggesting a specific threat.Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, however, told the BBC that “since the attack in Sousse the intelligence and threat picture has developed considerably, leading us to the view that a further terrorist attack is highly likely.”Philip Hammond stressed that Tunisia hasn’t done enough to enhance security, concluding that “more work is needed to effectively protect tourists from the terrorist threat.”Tunisian officials reacted to this warning, confirming that they are doing all they can to protect Britons and their interests, as well as those of other countries.Multiple reports say that Foreign Office’s decision would affect the Tunisian economy, which relies heavily on the tourism industry. read more

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Haitian quake survivors to benefit from more UN foodforwork projects

12 May 2010As Haiti continues to recover from January’s catastrophic earthquake, the head of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today announced an increase in cash- and food-for-work programmes for the country. As Haiti continues to recover from January’s catastrophic earthquake, the head of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today announced an increase in cash- and food-for-work programmes for the country.“Step by step, the people of Haiti are rebuilding their country,” said the agency’s Executive Director, Josette Sheeran, in the capital, Port-au-Prince. “This is a tribute to a nation that has shown extraordinary resilience in the face of epic levels of devastation.”More than 200,000 people were killed in the 12 January quake, which left 1.3 million people homeless, in addition to damaging Government buildings and vital infrastructure.WFP food was being distributed within hours of the magnitude-7.0 earthquake, and the agency has helped millions of people with its life-saving food rations in the first few months after the disaster.WFP is currently working with Haitian authorities to put the agency’s so-called toolbox – also including nutritional supplementary feeding and school meals – to full use, and these schemes are expected to benefit more than 2 million people.“We will look to empowering farming families and to stimulating markets across the country as a way to support the local community,” Ms. Sheeran, who wrapped up her two-day visit to the country, said.As Haiti enters the rain and hurricane season, WFP is also working to pre-position food, trucks and other supplies. It is also supporting local communities protect themselves against flooding, erosion and landslides.During her trip, Ms. Sheeran visited a cash- and food-for-work programme in the city of Croix-des-Bouquets, near the capital. Under this scheme, people who have lost their homes and livelihoods are building flood barriers to prevent the erosion of fertile soil, in return for food to feed their families and money to rebuild their homes.Such initiatives, she pointed out, are a vital element of WFP’s efforts to support long-term reconstruction, helping to jump-start the local economy and address food insecurity.Work projects are being scaled up to include 140,000 workers across Haiti, with benefits reaching up to 700,000 people in total.In Port-au-Prince, the WFP chief visited a school meals programme with the agency’s newest Ambassador Against Hunger, pop singer Christina Aguilera.In January, the five-time Grammy winner performed in MTV’s ‘Hope for Haiti’ telethon that raised more than $60 million for disaster relief, including for WFP relief work.Ms. Sheeran travelled to Haiti from Brazil, where she honoured President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva for his leadership in the fight against hunger and inadequate nutrition in his country and across the world by recognizing him as a Global Champion in the Battle Against Hunger.“The Government of Brazil and the World Food Programme share a common vision of a world free of hunger,” she said.“President Lula has shown leadership in the fight against hunger by pushing the needs of the poor and the under-nourished to the very top of the international agenda.”Ms. Sheeran, who visited the site of one of Brazil’s national hunger programmes, “Fome Zero” (Zero Hunger) project near the capital, Brasilia, said Mr. Lula da Silva’s enthusiasm for the needs of the hungry had set an example for others. read more

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Samsung teams up with Comcast Netflix to get ultrahigh definition content to

by Peter Svensson, The Associated Press Posted Jan 6, 2014 4:47 pm MDT Director Michael Bay appears at a Samsung news conference at the International Consumer Electronics Show, Monday, Jan. 6, 2014, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken) AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Samsung Electronics Co., the world’s largest maker of TVs, said Monday that it is tackling the problem of getting ultra-high-definition content to its new TV sets by teaming up with the Internet streaming services of Comcast, Netflix and Amazon.Like other TV makers, Samsung is betting that a quadrupling of the resolution of TV sets will get consumers interested in upgrading their existing, high-definition sets. The problem is that cable TV services and Blu-ray discs don’t support the bump in resolution, leaving the ultra-sharp sets without ultra-sharp content.At a news conference at the International CES gadget show in Las Vegas, Samsung said it would get UHD content through partnerships with U.S. streaming services, bypassing traditional cable and disc delivery. Under its partnership with Comcast Corp., the country’s largest cable company, Samsung TVs would get UHD content through an app running on the Internet-connected TV, bypassing Comcast’s set-top boxes.Comcast owns NBCUniversal, the movie studio and creator of TV shows, giving it direct access to content shot in UHD, which is also known as 4K. Similarly, Netflix Inc., the largest provider of paid streaming video, shot its own “House of Cards” show in 4K and has already said it will supply it in that format to TVs from LG Electronics, Samsung’s competitor.Netflix CEO Reed Hastings showed up at Sony’s news conference later in the day to say the streaming company was also working to deliver UHD video to Sony’s Bravia line of 4K sets. Hastings said UHD signals could be streamed if one has download speeds of at least 15 Megabits per second, a speed that is readily available to average households. He said streaming would even work over a Wi-Fi connection.Still, Internet delivery of UHD movies will place high demands on home broadband connections. As an alternative, Samsung will sell a UHD Video Pack — a hard drive loaded with movies that can be connected to its TV sets. Sony Corp. already sells a similar box for its UHD sets.Samsung’s UHD sets cost $3,000 and up. Sony didn’t immediately give prices for its latest UHD lineup.___AP Business Writer Ryan Nakashima contributed to this report. Samsung teams up with Comcast, Netflix to get ultra-high definition content to its new TVs read more

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The first of Calgarys Target stores about to shut its doors

As liquidation sales continue at Target stores across Calgary, one of the outlets will be permanently closing next week. The location in the SE, at 5115 17 Avenue, will be shutting its doors for good on March 22nd. The company announced it is closing all its Canadian locations back on January 15th. It is unknown when the other stores will close around Calgary. The first of Calgary’s Target stores about to shut its doors AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by News Staff Posted Mar 13, 2015 3:53 pm MDT read more

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New UNArab League agreement aims to prevent conflictrelated sexual violence

The agreement was signed in Cairo, Egypt, by the UN Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Zainab Hawa Bangura, and Nabil el-Araby, Secretary-General of the League of the Arab States. It is meant to form the foundation on which to mobilize political commitment and collaborate in combatting rape and other instances of conflict-related sexual violence, particularly in Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen“This framework of cooperation gives us a platform to join and reinforce our efforts, and together build a comprehensive response in the security, justice and service sectors,” said Special Representative Bangura, who is also a UN Under-Secretary-General. That will include deeper information sharing and analysis, training and capacity building, and providing medical and psychosocial services to survivors and their families, according to a press release from the Office of the Special Representative. The agreement also cites the role of civil society, as well as religious and traditional leaders “to help shift the stigma of sexual violence from the victims to the perpetrators” and to ensure that survivors and the potential children they bear as a result of the crimes, are accepted back into their communities, the Office said. “Ultimately it is my hope that the focused engagement of the Arab League will catalyze greater national leadership, ownership and responsibility among its member countries to protect vulnerable women, children and men from sexual violence,” Mrs. Bangura added. While in Egypt, the UN Special Representative met with Sheikh Ahmed El-Tayeb, whose title of Grand Imam of Al Azhar makes him one of the highest authorities in Sunni Islamic thought. During their meeting, Mrs. Bangura received assurance of the Sheikh’s commitment to speaking out against conflict-related sexual violence, particularly in the context of acts by extremist groups such as ISIL and Boko Haram, according to the press release. “This is an affront to the most sacred and fundamental tenets of Islam as a religion of peace and tolerance,” Mrs. Bangura said, referring to what she calls “perverting” of Islam by groups that attempt to give religious justification for sexual slavery and other acts of violence against women and girls. read more

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UK puffins may go the way of the dodo with fears of

Take a wrong turn and you could also find yourself knuckle-deep in puffin guano because the ultra-hygienic birds like to dig a separate “lavatory” tunnel. So far the news has been bleak. The puffins arrived four weeks later than usual and initial estimates suggest… Thrusting your hand into an underground puffin burrow is not an activity to be taken lightly. For a start, should the protective homeowner be present there is every chance of a nasty nip. But for the past few weeks, that is what National Trust rangers on the Farne Islands in Northumberland have been braving during their five-yearly puffin census. The rangers are not just looking for adult birds, but also for their eggs and pufflings. read more

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Child abuse support group oppose any sentence reduction for Athlone child rapist

first_imgTHE CARI FOUNDATION said they are “appalled” to hear that a 30-year-old man who was given two life sentences for raping two young girls in Athlone started an appeal against his life sentence today.He was sentenced three weeks ago in the Central Criminal Court for raping two girls aged six and nine years old, who were at a birthday party in the Westmeath town when they were lured away to a nearby house where the offences occurred.The Irish Times reports that the appeal was being made on the grounds that the sentence was excessive.Sentence reduction The CEO of The CARI Foundation, an organisation that supports children affected by child abuse, Mary Flaherty said today that she supported the Director of Public Prosecution in opposing any sentence reduction, stating:I am appalled at the news of this appeal. This re-opens the issue again for the children, families and community affected.Flaherty added that  CARI strongly supports the Director of Public Prosecutions’ (DPP) opposition to this appeal.“He rightly points out that these offences were at the upper end of the scale because of the nature of the behaviour, the age of the victims, the premeditation and the multiplicity of the assaults,” she said.CARI, which provides services for those affected by child sexual abuse said “the crime stands out as one of the most reckless and opportunistic sex crimes ever purported on very young children”.Flaherty concluded, “our children need to be protected from this extremely dangerous individual”.Related: Groups say ‘justice was delivered’ in Athlone rape case ruling> Read: Man given two life sentences for rape of two children in Athlone>last_img read more

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The Flash Finds Hope in Facing Grief

first_imgStay on target After last week, The Flash is in a bleak place. Elongated Man is dead. Killer Frost could be too. I was worried that the show would devolve into the dour mess that season three became, but this episode actually handles grief in a really smart way. Thankfully, Harry didn’t die in last week’s episode, as scary as his last scene looked. He has other problems though. It turns out injecting his brain with dark matter was a really bad idea. Now he’s losing his intelligence, and it doesn’t look like there’s a way to fix it. His first instinct is, of course, to use the thinking cap, but Gideon reminds him that that’s what caused the problem in the first place. He really is getting dumber, huh?The Thinker, meanwhile, no longer has that problem. Thanks to his takeover of Ralph’s body, his mind is no longer deteriorating. He can absorb the powers of countless more metas and be totally fine. Now he’s going to enact… whatever his plan is. You know? Maybe that’s why he hasn’t really landed as a villain yet. We have no clue what his end game is. Just that he wanted the specific powers of the bus metas, and he uses them to screw with Barry. Whatever his ultimate goal is, it appears he’s finally going after Fallout. Remember him? He’s the walking nuclear bomb who spent an entire episode oblivious to the destruction he was causing.Grant Gustin as Barry Allen and Wentworth Miller as Leo — X/Citizen Cold (Photo: Shane Harvey/The CW)Realizing they could use a superhero with cold powers, they travel to Earth-X to bring Citizen Cold on board. But they accidentally bring his current enemy along with him: the Nazi version of Black Siren. Um… hi, Laurel. Boy, it’s a good thing Oliver Queen isn’t around. Or Sara Lance. That’d get awkward. Oddly enough, the episode continues with no comment on their new guest. When it returns from commercial, Citizen Cold and Team Flash just go over the plan, with no mention of their new Nazi guest. Did I miss a scene?The episode continues anyway, with Team Flash moving Fallout to what they think is a safer facility. That’s when DeVoe attacks. The brief fight with him is well-directed. I like that it didn’t show the villain until he revealed himself. Just all of a sudden, Team Flash was floating in mid-air as their truck became weightless. When DeVoe does appear, he makes everything worse by using Ralph’s voice to taunt Barry. That’s just low. Then Siren-X shows up out of nowhere because… well, I guess they really did just let a Nazi supervillain run around Central City. Great job, team! She does throw a wrench into the Thinker’s plans, though. Though, as we learn later, he predicted her arrival, he also predicted that Barry would take care of her for him. But Barry was too overcome with grief to do anything. Siren-X knocks out Thinker, takes Joe and Fallout hostage, and holds up the police station. It turns out she’s a little bitter about Earth 1’s superheroes destroying her Nazi heroes. She wants to return the favor.Katie Cassidy as Siren — X and Ryan Alexander McDonald as Neil Borman/Fallout (Photo: Shane Harvey/The CW)One thing I will say about this episode: For the most part, it hits the emotional beats really well. Especially for this show. It’s all about confronting grief after losing someone, or something, you love. Everyone is dealing with it in this episode. Caitlin is missing Killer Frost, someone she used to share a body with. Harry is losing the only thing that gives him purpose. And Barry spends the entire episode in denial. He tells himself he’s desensitized to death and loss, when really he’s just bottling up his feelings. He thinks he has to in order to lead the team. That conflict even makes the episode’s requisite can-I-talk-to-you feel a little more real.We get another short, but fun battle with Siren-X at the end. Team Flash and Citizen Cold can’t quite overcome her sound waves. And as Fallout grows more stressed, he gets closer to becoming a catastrophic explosion. But Barry can defeat her easily, he’s just frozen. That’s what happens when you bottle up your emotions. They surface at the worst possible time. It’s only by accepting his grief, that he’s able to rise up, defeat Siren-X, and contain Fallout. Then, he runs to his old office and cries his eyes out to Joe. The story of this season has some serious problems, but these performances can be really affecting at times. Grant Gustin is still the best Flash.Danielle Panabaker as Caitlin Snow and Candice Patton as Iris West (Photo: Shane Harvey/The CW)That emotion is going to be vital when it comes to defeating DeVoe. I know a few episodes ago, I said Ralph’s spontaneity would be the key, but the season didn’t work out that way. I still think that would have been a cool way for the story to go, but this is also a poetic undoing. DeVoe thinks of every variable, predicts every outcome, but he’s willfully blind to emotion. He sees it as a weakness, a distraction. Though the episode ends with Fallout in the exact place DeVoe needs him to be (hey, I guess we finally find out his plan next week), he can’t predict actions based on emotion. That’s going to be his downfall. Particularly because he can’t even see his own wife’s feelings. He spends this entire episode treating her like dirt. She tries to show affection, to look pretty for him, and he belittles her for it. More than once, he chastises her for thinking. Because that’s his job. By the end, she pretends to agree that emotions are nothing but a hindrance, and he doesn’t see her tears. She’s going to turn on him, and it’ll be so sweet when she does.As fun as it was to see Leonard Snart back again, I can’t ignore what a huge waste of a villain this episode was. That’s been a problem all season, really. We’ve had fun episodes dedicated to colorful and interesting rogues, only for them to be killed off or otherwise permanently sent away. The Flash is burning through the DC Comics backlog at an alarming rate, and I can’t help but wonder if they’re going to wish they had a few more villains on hand in later seasons. I mean, I guess that’s what parallel Earths are for.Katie Cassidy as Siren — X, Danielle Panabaker as Caitlin Snow. Ryan Alexander McDonald as Neil Borman/Fallout and Jesse L. Martin as Detective Joe West (Photo: Shane Harvey/The CW)But then what’s the point of even that when you treat a villain like this? Siren-X could have had a really cool story. There’s a ton of emotional potential there for an alternate Nazi Laurel Lance. But she was barely a character in this episode. The most development she got was in the form of an exposition dump from Snart. She shows up, disappears with no explanation, and isn’t mentioned again until she takes Joe hostage. Again, why does Team Flash just let a literal Nazi roam the city, continuing to plan as though nothing’s happened? It’s the one part of the episode that makes absolutely no sense, and it’s driving me crazy.In any case, it’s over. She’s defeated, and I really enjoyed the rest of the episode. It was full of well-done emotional beats and nuanced character moments. I especially liked Harry’s attempts to protect Cisco from suffering the same fate he has. We got to see the caring side of Harry come out. That hardly ever happens. We even end on a hopeful note as far as Killer Frost is concerned. Though Caitlin’s been drained of dark matter, she finds evidence that Killer Frost is still inside her somewhere. This episode established a strong emotional core that makes me think if the show holds on to it, it can come out of this season on a high note. Top Movies and TV Panels to Keep on Your Radar for SDCC 2019’The Flash’ Season 5 Finale Recap: 2 Big Bads and 1 Pre-Crisis center_img Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

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PSG plot January swoop for highlyrated West Ham defender

first_imgWest Ham United defender Issa Diop could reportedly leave the London Stadium in January after the Europe giants prepared a £50 million offerOne of the biggest revelations in the Premier League this year has demonstrated some remarkable displays with the Hammers in his debut season in England.Along with Fabian Balbuena, the 21-year-old centre-back has been the cornerstone of West Ham’s defense under Manuel Pellegrini, with his performance against Manchester United and Chelsea so far emerging as the most impressive ones.Neymar, BrazilNeymar can win the Ballon d’Or, says Ander Herrera Andrew Smyth – September 13, 2019 An “excited” Ander Herrera believes new Paris Saint-Germain team-mate Neymar is a contender for the Ballon d’Or alongside Kylian Mbappe.According to the Daily Mail, the Irons could be on the verge of making a £28 million profit in less than six months, with Paris Saint-Germain lining up a £50 million January swoop for the player who arrived from Toulouse for £22 million last summer.The Parisians have splashed out around £35m for Thilo Kehrer in the previous transfer window, but the German youngster is yet to establish himself under Thomas Tuchel.Meanwhile, Thiago Silva is already 34, while Presnel Kimpembe proved to be unreliable, which is why the Ligue 1 holders have to rush back into the market.last_img read more

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Ruptured water main causes flooding leaves 30 without water in Normal Heights

first_imgWater main break 3500 bl of Adams Ave, side streets too, no streets shut off from traffic though pic.twitter.com/byL4grjyvl— Ed Lenderman (@EdLendermanKUSI) January 14, 2019 KUSI Newsroom, Ruptured water main causes flooding, leaves 30 without water in Normal Heights Categories: Local San Diego News, Traffic & Accidents FacebookTwitter Posted: January 14, 2019center_img January 14, 2019 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – A water main break in Normal Heights Monday left about 30 customers without water service, with flooding reported in at least several properties.The break in the 10-inch diameter cast iron pipe was reported at 4:10 a.m. in an alley off the 4700 block of Hawley Boulevard, San Diego city spokesman Arian Collins said.Crews shut off the water around 6:45 a.m., Collins said.Flooding was reported at a handful of properties, but the extent of the damage was not immediately clear, he said.Service was expected to be restored by around 5:30 p.m., Collins said. KUSI Newsroom last_img read more

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JobHunting in 08

first_imgFrustrated by the mainstream media approach to politics, Ryan Sholin, a grad student in the School of Journalism & Mass Communications at San Jose State University, launched a blog (ryansholin.com). Sholin was smart in his posts and also smart in using online as a promotional tool. His work caught the eye of a number of media pros, including b-to-b media consultant Paul Conley, and Howard Owens and Bill Bevins of Gatehouse Media.In September 2007, Gatehouse offered Sholin a job. “I had run into Ryan first through his blog,” says Conley. “And I was hardly alone. Ryan was exceptionally smart and he was very sophisticated in using the online world to market himself.”That type of online self-promotion will become more prevalent in coming years. Bloggers like Will Sullivan, the voice behind journerdism.com, have emerged as new media leaders, thanks to their own personal online presence. For magazine people seeking jobs in 2008, the usual tactics of scouring the online classifieds still apply. However, online tools are increasingly becoming important, whether it’s doing your own separate blog or leveraging a social network to get noticed. And don’t forget to use the Web to check out your potential employers. Getting the Most Out of Social MediaSocial media has gone mainstream and it’s no longer for the bubble gum set. Last month, professional networking site LinkedIn announced a new program that allows partners to build companion applications on their sites. BusinessWeek is the first partner in the initiative.In his November/December ASBPE president’s letter, BNA Tax & Accounting senior state tax law editor Steven Roll wrote about his LinkedIn experience. “LinkedIn is searchable, so I included the words ‘state tax,’ which relates to what I write about,” says Roll. “Two weeks later, a recruiter from a big-four accounting firm called to see if I’d like to write about state issues for them. She wouldn’t reveal her sources, but I’m convinced that she found my profile on LinkedIn.”Brad Kenney, associate editor at IndustryWeek and the new president of ASBPE’s Cleveland chapter, is trying to spread journalistic online competencies through the association. Kenney advises that social network profiles be treated almost like your company’s Web content—keep it updated and make it relevant for search terms. “It’s like coding a Web site,” Kenney says. “Not only will that force you to think about your strengths but it will let you be searchable.”While independent bloggers like Sholin have succeeded, Kenney wonders how feasible it is for a full-time editor to launch a personal blog. “That can eat time like nothing else,” he says. “I took my own personal blog down. I only have a work one now.”However, those independent bloggers very much remain competition and require editors to raise their own bar. “Information-gathering competency is something where the average person can use the same tools you can,” says Kenney. “You have to become that much better than they are, such as knowing how to use Google Advanced Search.”Kenney also uses a social bookmarking site to see what’s causing controversy in the areas he covers and advises every editor to have a feed reader. “I use the LinkedIn question and answer section because it’s a good way to see where people are staking out and their professional competency is on the line,” he says. “The answers are generally pretty good.” Assessing Potential EmployersIt cuts both ways—not only should potential employers be considering your online presence, you should evaluate theirs, including LinkedIn and Facebook profiles of would-be managers. Also evaluate the company’s Web site. “You can tell about the quality of their site and if they’ve done any coding,” says Kenney. “Do they have knowledge of how things should look on a Web site? Are they blog-enabled, do they have 21st-Century tools for disseminating information? Do they have bookmarking services? Not only is that important to me as a journalist but a strong Web presence bodes well for future revenue and in turn, long-term employment.”But ultimately, it’s still editorial skills that gets one hired, not just a pretty Facebook account. “We hire people because they can write,” says Kenney. “The Web stuff—getting involved in forums, setting up blogs, getting them set up on LinkedIn—that you can teach.”last_img read more

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Google holds firm on Chrome changes that may break ad blockers

first_imgNot everyone’s happy about proposed changes coming to Chrome. Stephen Shankland/CNET When it comes to concerns over new ad-blocking limits planned for Chrome, Google has budged but so far hasn’t moved very far.The company is responding to criticism of proposed changes to its Chrome web browser that may cripple ad-blocking tools. Though Google revealed it’s lifting some limits and plans an exemption for enterprise users, it doesn’t look like the search giant has been fundamentally persuaded by critics.Google revealed the changes in October as part of a broader plan to improve Chrome extensions. In January, developers noticed that part of the plan, called Manifest v3, could hurt ad blockers. Manifest v3 is designed to improve Chrome extensions’ performance, privacy and security, but one part of that change limits how extensions will be able to examine aspects of websites. Some developers have said this will torpedo their ad-blocking and privacy extensions. Tags In response to criticism from developers, Google’s Simeon Vincent said the proposed changes in Manifest V3 aim to give end users more control and briefly noted an exception for enterprise users. The Chrome enterprise version offers administrative control options and is free to use.”Chrome is deprecating the blocking capabilities of the webRequest API in Manifest V3, not the entire webRequest API (though blocking will still be available to enterprise deployments),” wrote Vincent in a Chromium forum post on May 24.And in a statement, Google said it “supports the use and development of ad blockers.” The company is working with developers to create a “privacy-preserving content filtering system that limits the amount of sensitive browser data shared with third parties.” It didn’t comment in detail, though.A Google Chrome leader in effect denied any effort to hobble ad blockers.”The sole motivation here is correcting major privacy and security deficiencies in the current system. I know, because I set that focus, and the team reports up through me,” Chrome security leader Justin Schuh tweeted Thursday.And Alex Russell, a Google web standards leader, likened the change to the shift Chrome originally made with a more limited extensions foundation compared with the all-purpose framework built into Mozilla’s Firefox browser at the time. Mozilla has since moved to a framework called Web Extensions that mirrors Chrome’s.”We all learn the hard way that providing nice things and hoping they don’t get misused eventually get users hurt. So this is a correction whose details are being honed,” Russell tweeted. Figuring out how to improve performance and security without hampering utility is tough, but, he added, “I can assure you the extensions team hasn’t stopped listening.”Ad blocker objectionsContent blockers are a major part of the internet, with 615 million devices using them, according to a 2017 study by PageFair, a company that tries to help publishers cope with the technology. Content blockers’ most visible effect is often blocking ads, but they also can block tracking software ads use — even when ads themselves are invisible. Examples include uBlock Origin, AdBlock Plus, Ghostery and Privacy Badger.One of the most prominent objections came from Raymond Hill, developer of uBlock Origin. He said this week that the new ad-blocking approach “benefits Google’s primary business,” advertising.Part of the debate concerns rules that ad blockers use to decide what to screen and what to display. Chrome’s current design permits lots of those rules, so for example an ad blocker can check to see if elements on a website are coming from a very long list of advertising-related internet addresses.The new approach has a proposed limit to those rules — a maximum of 30,000 — which would hobble ad blockers and other software using those lists. uBlock Origin employs more than 90,000, Hill said. He didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.Although Hill raised the point that Google benefits when ads aren’t blocked, it’s not clear that Google’s proposed ad-blocker changes would shelter its ad business in any way. Even a short list of rules could easily include Google’s ads, and indeed likely would given Google’s power in online advertising.Google lifting ad-blocker limitsGoogle added a more flexible mechanism, dynamic rules, in response to concerns from content blocker developers, Vincent said. That’s currently got a limit of 5,000 rules. However, Google does plan to raise its limits to some as-yet-unknown number.”We are planning to raise these values, but we won’t have updated numbers until we can run performance tests to find a good upper bound that will work across all supported devices,” he said.The complaints have opened a door to Chrome competitors, though, with some content-blocker fans discussing a move to Mozilla’s Firefox, Brave Software’s Brave and Microsoft’s new Edge that’s based on Google’s open-source Chromium browser foundation.Brave, also based on Chromium, has ad and tracker blocking built in and enabled by default and thus will block that content regardless of Google’s decisions. But Brave Chief Executive Brendan Eich said Thursday the company will maintain Chrome’s older extension interface so uBlock Origin and another blocker from Hill, uMatrix, will continue to work.”We will support uBO and uMatrix,” Eich said.Firefox, too, looks likely to stay the course. “Firefox continues to allow ad-blocking extensions to work in the browser. We don’t have any plans at this point to change that,” Mozilla said in a statement.Google changes to Manifest v3Google wants to move from an application programming interface (API) called webRequest that blockers use to run their rules and move instead to a new one called declarativeNetRequest. “The big problem with webRequest is unfixable privacy and security holes,” Google’s Schuh said.Hill also objects to the new interface’s limited flexibility for running its rules, saying declarativeNetRequest’s abilities are “set in stone” and not something uBlock Origin can adapt to use.But another Chrome security team member, Chris Palmer, said the new interface will improve blockers.”The new extension APIs are not going to break content blockers, but it will help them work more safely and potentially faster,” Palmer tweeted.But it’s clear Google hasn’t convinced its critics.Originally published May 30, 8:13 a.m. PT.Updates, 10:59 a.m.: Includes more about Google’s plans and the objections to them; 3:36 p.m.: Adds comment from Mozilla; 3:55 p.m.: Includes comment from Google; May 31, 9:27 a.m. PT: Adds comment from Google’s Alex Russell. Software 3:49 Share your voice 13center_img The new Chrome’s best features CNET Apps Today Now playing: Watch this: Comments Advertising Brave browser Chrome Firefoxlast_img read more

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Walker Poll Suggests Parnell Vulnerable … In A TwoWay Race

first_imgIn the three-way race for governor, Sean Parnell’s two challengers have developed a bit of a chummy relationship. Here’s Independent candidate Bill Walker last month at the National Congress of American Indians.WALKER: There are many benefits of running and one of the benefits I’ve had is getting to know Byron.And Democrat Byron Mallott …MALLOTT: I have to say that we’ve become good friends.But now, one of those candidates says he doesn’t want to have to compete with the other at all. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez reports that Walker would rather face the governor alone.Download AudioSince Independent candidate Bill Walker and Democrat Byron Mallott launched their campaigns, both have concentrated on beating Republican Gov. Sean Parnell. Mallott and Walker have never sent a press release bashing the other, and they’ve even complimented each other’s ideas on the campaign trail.(Rosemarie Alexander/KTOO)Only, there’s a problem with that. In the polls that have been conducted, Walker and Mallott both lose in a three-way race. Now, Walker has released a poll suggesting he would be competitive against Parnell if they were facing head on. He says he wouldn’t mind it if were suddenly to find himself in a two-way race.“No disrespect to anybody, but I certainly wouldn’t,” says Walker. “So I think the poll speaks to that.”The poll was commissioned by the Walker campaign, and conducted by Ivan Moore Research and the Alaska Survey. It shows Parnell with 42 percent support from respondents, Walker with 29 percent, and Mallott with 16 percent. When the poll takes Mallott out of the equation, the difference between Parnell and Walker shrinks to one point – 46 percent to 45 percent. And when Mallott is matched up against the governor, Parnell wins by a landslide – 55 percent to 34 percent.Looking at the results, Walker says he doesn’t regret bypassing the closed Republican primary, where he would have been able to challenge Parnell more directly. While Walker is now an independent candidate, he has previously run as a Republican candidate and lost to Parnell in the 2010 primary. He says his message now does better with a broader audience than just Republican voters.Walker adds that even if he likes the idea of a two-way race in the November 4 general election, he hasn’t approached Mallott about dropping out.“It’s not intended to be a shot at him in anyway, other than just the polls — they are what they are,” says Walker.Not surprisingly, Mallott isn’t too friendly to the idea of leaving the race, or trying to merge tickets. Mary Halloran is Mallott’s campaign manager.“It is not and it never will be a two-way race between Bill Walker and Sean Parnell,” says Halloran. “What the poll does show and we’re most interested in is that most Alaskans want a different governor.”Halloran is also skeptical of the poll itself. She suggests that it could be a “push poll” — never mind the problem of Alaska being famously difficult to survey.The only other polls released on the governor’s race have been done by the North Carolina-based Public Policy Polling, and they reached an opposite conclusion. A May poll showed the numbers basically flipped, with Parnell getting support from 37 percent of respondents, Mallott coming in second with 27 percent, and Walker in third with 17 percent.“We do know that in all the other polls we’ve seen, Walker’s come in dead last,” says Halloran. “And what’s changed? As far as we can tell: nothing.”Halloran says that moving forward, the Mallott campaign plans to spend more time highlighting the differences between their candidate and Walker, particularly on social issues like abortion.Halloran would not say if their campaign’s internal polls match any of the publicly available numbers.Ivan Moore, who conducted the survey, stands by his numbers.“There was nothing about this survey that could be characterized as ‘pushy’ in any way at all,” says Moore. “When you come out with poll numbers that people don’t like, they resort to attacking the poll itself. I am an open book, and anyone who wants to come and sit down and look at the original data with me can do it.”Moore says his results likely differ from PPP’s because his firm calls cell phones and landlines. PPP collects its information from landlines and online responses.For its part, the Parnell team is brushing off Walker’s statement that he could be competitive in a two-way race.“No matter how hard Walker tries to ignore the reality of a three-way race, Sean Parnell continues to hold a double-digit lead,” says campaign manager Jerry Gallagher.last_img read more

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Former Murkowski campign manager selected for Interior job

first_imgSen. Lisa Murkowski’s former campaign manager has a new job in the Trump administration. Steve Wackowski will be the new senior advisor for Alaska Affairs in the Interior Department.Listen nowWackowski will advise Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke who announced the appointment Tuesday in Anchorage.Wackowski is from Anchorage and that’s where his position will be based. He worked as an aide to the late Sen. Ted Stevens and ran Murkowski’s 2016 re-election campaign. Zinke said he also likes that his new advisor is a major in the Air Force Reserves. Interior secretaries typically appoint someone to be their Alaska point person, either a senior advisor or special assistant, and sometimes one of each.last_img read more

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Over 300 sentenced to death in Iraq for IS links

first_imgIraqIraqi courts have sentenced to death a total of more than 300 people, including dozens of foreigners, for belonging to the Islamic State group, judicial sources said Wednesday.The suspects are being tried by two courts, one near the former jihadist stronghold of Mosul in northern Iraq and another in Baghdad which is dealing notably with foreigners and women.Since January in the capital, 97 foreign nationals have been condemned to death and 185 to life in prison, according to a judicial source.Most of the women sentenced were from Turkey and republics of the former Soviet Union.In January, an Iraqi court condemned a German woman to death after finding her guilty of belonging to IS while on Tuesday a French woman was sentenced to life in prison.At the court In Tel Keif near Mosul, 212 people have been sentenced to death, 150 to life in prison and 341 to other jails terms, Supreme Judicial Council spokesman Abdel Sattar Bayraqdar said in a statement.“It has been proven that they carried out criminal actions at public hearings conducted in accordance with the law during which the convicts’ rights were guaranteed,” he said.Iraq declared victory in December against IS-also known as ISIS-which at one point controlled a third of the country.On Monday the justice ministry said 11 people convicted of terrorism-related charges had been executed in Iraq, which according to New York-based Human Rights Watch is the world’s number four executioner.“These executions follow rushed trials of ISIS suspects which are riddled with due process violations, including convictions based solely on confessions which are sometimes extracted by torture,” said HRW senior Iraq researcher Belkis Wille.“Iraq’s mishandling of the ISIS trials not only denies victims real justice, but also risks sending innocent Iraqis to their deaths.”last_img read more

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Kinect to blame for Xbox One launch titles only being 720p

first_imgDespite most gamers being unable to tell the difference between 720p Xbox One games upscaled to 1080p and native 1080p games on the PS4, the Internet has exploded with rage over the subject. If you’re looking for a place to point your pitchforks, folks, look no further than that camera bar staring up at you from your entertainment center.It has been suspected for a quite a while now that Microsoft was going to be a bit behind Sony when it came to the launch of the Xbox One. Sony’s console has only slightly better specs, but it has never been considered enough to create a noticeable difference betwene the two machines.As we got closer to the console launch dates, it began to leak out that some of the Xbox One titles would be playing at a lower resolution than the PS4. Just about every site has a title about 720p vs 1080p on some of the top launch games, which is enough to upset anyone eager to get their hands on an Xbox One. If the consoles are so similar, why are we seeing this performance drop?The answer is actually in multiple parts. Currently, game developers are struggling to get their games shipping with the console launch, so optimizing for the hardware isn’t a priority or luxury they have. In a recent interview with Infinity Ward’s executive producer Mark Rubin, he explained that they put new technology into Call of Duty: Ghosts before they even had the consoles. Now that they have the consoles, they can start to optimize things. This doesn’t help Call of Duty: Ghosts fans, but the next iteration of the franchise will benefit from this polish instead.It’s not all on the developers, though. Even those who had very early access to the consoles were dealing with versions of the OS that were far from complete. Several developers complained that Microsoft was way behind on updates for the hardware in the Xbox One, and that platform agnostic builds of games would run at noticeably lower resolution with a dramatically decreased FPS count on the Xbox One during development.It was widely suspected that these delays were why Microsoft was still using high end PCs to show off launch titles at gaming conferences. As a result, developers weren’t really able to optimize their games as much as they could with Sony’s console.The biggest perpetrator to the performance dip on the Xbox One, however, is itself. More specifically, the mandatory accessory for the Xbox One that activates some of the really cool controller free features that have helped define the Xbox consoles over the last few years. The Kinect is an undeniably cool accessory, but the performance hit the Xbox One takes in order to power one isn’t cool at all. In order to be constantly awake for things like skeletal tracking and voice recognition, the Kinect currently consumes 10% of GPU time at a minimum.The good news, at least as good as it can get under the circumstances, is that all of this is the result of the launch rush. Microsoft will optimize the processor consumption of the Kinect with a software update, as well as make sure their drivers are more polished, and game developers will have more time to focus on optimizing their games for this future experience.Unfortunately, this means that the launch titles for the Xbox One will be similar to the launch titles for almost every other console launch ever. Fortunately, because the games are scaled to 1080p (in some cases even at 60fps) it’s not like the experience is really all that different to begin with.last_img read more

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Capitals date with ghazals

first_imgMusic Aficionados have always had an ear for ghazal and ghazal lovers of Delhi were recently in for a treat when Pakistani singer Attaullah Khan performed ghazal numbers. Bollywood lovers would recall Khan from the 90s hit song Acha Sila Diya Tune which was sung by Sonu Nigam in Bewafa Sanam. The lyrics of the song were written by Khan. Hailing from Punjab in Pakistan, Khan has performed naat and kalaam of famous Sufi poets like Mian Muhammad Baksh’s Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Saiful maluk and Bulleh Shah’s Keey Bay Dardan sang yaree. He has more than 1,000 music albums and has recorded more than 4,000 songs in seven languages.In Delhi, Khan began the evening with his famous song Ae Theve Mundari da Theva. He sang numbers like Acha sila diya tune mere pyar ka, Kameej teri kali and others. ‘Musical and cultural exchange programmes will revive the relationship between India and Pakistan,’ Khan said.last_img read more

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Normal services restored at Kolkata airport after 9 hours

first_imgKolkata: A day after scores of passengers were inconvenienced at the Kolkata airport due to technical glitches in the check-in system, a senior official said it took the authorities nine hours to restore normal services. “The system, which slowed down and conked off around 5.15pm yesterday (Monday), was up and running by 2.30am,” Airport Director Kaushik Bhattacharjee said Tuesday. A tweet by Kolkata Airport thanked passengers and other stakeholders for their patience. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata”The Local Area Network has been restored around 2:30am. We thank our passengers, airlines and all the stakeholders for the patience and cooperation,” it said. Five Kolkata-bound flights were also diverted Monday evening owing to bad weather in the city. The technical snag did not affect the arrival of flights to Kolkata, thunderstorms and subsequent rain did, a spokesperson of Airports Authority of India (AAI) said. “A Singapore Airline flight was diverted to Dhaka, three others were diverted to Bhubaneswar and one to Lucknow,” the spokesperson said. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateThe Airports Authority of India (AAI) owns and manages more than 100 airports – including the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International (NSCBI) Airport in Kolkata. A fault was detected at the local area network (LAN) of NSCBI Airport Monday evening, hampering check-in process of the passengers. Around 30 flights were delayed by an average of 20-25 minutes as boarding passes had to be issued manually. The airlines, therefore, have been issuing boarding passes manually since 5.30 pm, the official added. “The Internet server has been down since 5.30 pm and it is likely to start working from 10.30 pm on Monday. Around 30 flights have been delayed in between 5.30 pm and 9 pm by an average time of 20-25 minutes,” said an AAI official. The official said the IT team of the AAI worked diligently to resolve the issue. Several thousand passengers who were to board flights at the Kolkata airport on Monday evening were caught in serpentine queues at airline check-in counters as the system used to issue boarding pass to passengers and tickets for registered baggage blanked out during peak hour. The glitch and the resultant slowdown in check-in process delayed departing flights by 25 minutes to an hour. Incoming flights were, however, not affected and touched down at the airport on time.last_img read more

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A new king to wear uThukelas troubled crown

first_img“I believe that for the ANC to select me, they saw potential in me. As an executive member of uThukela currently, that means I am not new to council and I understand the issues that affect our people,” he explained in an exclusive interview with the Ladysmith Gazette. “To be given the opportunity to steer such a big ship, it means my work over the years is paying off and I have been recognised as the right person for the job. I understand all issues facing people in both rural areas and the suburbs,” he stressed.When asked how he would change things, Siphiwe stated that he would first have to change the attitude of uThukela employees and make them realise service delivery comes first!The public needs to also be taught the importance of saving water, he added.DID YOU KNOW?Click on the words highlighted in red to read more on this and related topics.If you are reading this on your cellphone and there are telephone numbers provided in the text, you can call these simply by clicking on them.To receive news links via WhatsApp.For the latest news, visit our webpage or follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Join us there! Since ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe made his announcement on the mayoral candidates who will contest this year’s municipal elections, one name has been whispered in the corridors of power within the inner sanctums of uThukela.That name is Siphiwe Mazibuko.Few so-called “king-makers” within the ANC would have predicted that he would replace the “Virgin Mayor” Dudu Mazibuko.But Siphiwe is now set to be the next uThukela District Mayor.Siphiwe is no stranger to power. As a long-serving member of the ANC, he established his power-base within the district serving as Dudu’s right-hand man in Exco.He is born and bred from within the heart of Ladysmith. Siphiwe grew up in Steadville and matriculated from Klipriver High School. He has been involved in politics since the 1990s, joining the ANC in 1991. Siphiwe says that he took part in community activities in the Rooi Section of Steadville while at high school.He participated in the commission of the Congress of South African Students (COSAS), an anti-apartheid student organisation that was established in 1976 in the wake of the June 16 Soweto Uprising. After some time as a participant of the commission, he was eventually elected as Regional Chairperson of COSAS. While still at high school, under COSAS, he also took part in community activities that aimed at developing the youth.After joining the ANC’s Youth League, he left at branch level and was later elected as Regional Chairperson of the Youth League under the Ukhahlamba Region from 2002 to 2012. WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite last_img read more

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