Darjeeling: Binay Tamang, chairman of the GTA Board of Administrators, has tendered his resignation from the post. Following the acceptance of his resignation, Anit Thapa, the vice-chairman, will now officiate as chairman, stated GTA in an order signed by the Principal Secretary, Home and Hill Affairs department. The order states that Tamang has tendered his resignation in order to contest the by-election from Darjeeling Assembly constituency. “…Now, therefore, the Governor is pleased to accept the resignation tendered by Binay Tamang vide his letter dated 24.04.2019 from the post of chairman of the said caretaking authority of GTA,” stated the order.
Rabat- This new video is now going viral of a cat coming to the rescue of a little boy who was attacked by a dog while he was riding his bike in the driveway.A footage from home surveillance camera shows the boy playing with his bike behind a parked SUV when all of a sudden he was attacked by the neighbor’s dog.The dog started pulling the boy when the family cat, Tara, jumped at the dog and chased him away. The boy has been reported to be okay and that he only needed few stitches.In less than three hours after the video was posted, it reached 23,000 viewers and more than 300 people commented on it. Most YouTube users praised the braveness of the cat, and expressed awe to see a cat attack a dog twice its size. Others pointed out that this cat proves that cats are also loyal to their owners.“I love how the cat body checked a dog over twice its size. And there are scientists who say cats don’t love their owners? Here’s proof of how much any animal will fight to protect those who are considered family,” one viewer said commenting on the video.“I cannot watch this enuf! I am close to tears each time. Cats get such a bad rap and this proves that cats are an amazing animal!!,” another viewer said.
The average value for the Canadian dollar on Thursday was 77.24 cents US, up 0.21 of a cent from Wednesday.The U.S. dollar was at C$1.2946, down 0.36 of a cent.Pound sterling was at C$1.6773, down 0.01 of a cent, and US$1.2956, up 0.35 of a cent.The Euro was at C$1.4767, up 0.53 of a cent.Quotations provided by the Bank of Canada.
MIN56MIN50CHI 24, MIN 10+3.5– BAL81BAL68BAL 26, CLE 24-10.5– DAL1572541569Dak Prescott055 PIT83PIT83PIT 16, CIN 13-1.7– 1990-17 Avg. 12Colts3–1– ATL54ATL56ATL 34, TB 32-0.4– 5Bears7–7– 7Chargers4–4– LAC1624401580Philip Rivers+1239 Home teams are in bold.Elo quarterback adjustments are relative to average, based on a rolling average of defense-adjusted QB stats (including rushing).Source: Pro-Football-Reference.com 11Texans3–1– Home teams are in bold.The scoring system is nonlinear, so readers’ average points don’t necessarily match the number of points that would be given to the average reader prediction. SEA88SEA86SEA 27, ARI 24-2.0– 10Cowboys3–2– Standard EloQB-Adjusted Elo IND1578441533Andrew Luck+3842 All numbers are as of the final regular-season game of a given year. 2018 probabilities may not add up exactly to 100 percent because of rounding.Source: Pro-Football-Reference.com 8Eagles4–3– The remainder of the wild-card field lines up roughly in inverse order between quarterback quality and that of the rest of the team. Some teams — such as Andrew Luck’s Colts and Deshaun Watson’s Texans — have gotten to where they are largely because of their standout quarterback play. Others, like the Ravens, are doing a lot better recently than we’d expect from their QBs’ performance alone. Baltimore has won six times in the seven games since Lamar Jackson replaced Joe Flacco as the starter in Week 11, though Jackson himself ranked third-worst among qualified quarterbacks in QBR this season, and that includes his stellar rushing statistics.3It should be said that Jackson’s poor Elo adjustment also owes at least in part to the fact that new starters — Sunday will mark Jackson’s eighth career NFL start — are assigned a low initial rating when they debut, and that rating gradually improves when (if) the quarterback plays better over time. (Beyond his own stats, Jackson’s effect on the team’s overall running game shows up under the team’s QB-neutral Elo rating.)Everyone else is somewhere in between, including the resurgent Eagles with backup Nick Foles, whose QB adjustment is back roughly where it was after Philly beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl, but took many twists and turns to get there; the Chargers with 37-year-old Philip Rivers, whose own adjustment has fallen by 38 Elo points since Week 13 with a string of mediocre outings down the stretch; the Dak Prescott-led Cowboys, whose team QB adjustment has hovered around average all season; and Russell Wilson’s Seahawks, whose own run-heavy attack masked another season of highly efficient passing. OUR PREDICTION (ELO)READERS’ PREDICTION Of those, Elo gives the best chance of advancing to the Bears, followed by the Ravens. And upset-wise, the best odds belong to the Seahawks against the Cowboys, regardless of whether we adjust for recent QB performance. Whichever teams win, they’ll have to contend with road games in the divisional round — but given the overall state of the league, they’ll still have a better chance than usual to knock somebody off and forge their own path to the Super Bowl.FiveThirtyEight vs. the readersTo keep tabs on each team’s classic Elo as the weekend plays out, be sure to check out FiveThirtyEight’s NFL prediction interactive, which simulates the rest of the season 100,000 times and tracks how likely every team is to advance through the playoffs and win the Super Bowl. And even though the regular season is over, you can still pick against the Elo algorithm in our prediction game and keep climbing up our giant leaderboard.According to data from the game last week, here are the matchups in which Elo made its best — and worst — predictions against the reader picks for Week 17: TeamRatingWin Prob.Base RtgStarting QBQB Adj.Win Prob. DAL62DAL56DAL 36, NYG 35-8.2– 1Saints21%–30%– PHI1624391606Nick Foles+234 SEA1605461572Russell Wilson+2645 PHI65PHI71PHI 24, WSH 0+1.6– 3Patriots14–14– HOU1551561537Deshaun Watson+2858 2Chiefs20–21– rank2018 Team How Elo sees the wild-card round playing outWin probabilities for Week 18 games according to two methods — standard Elo and a version that contains an adjustment for starting quarterbacks 4Rams13–10– Because of this logjam of good-not-great teams, nobody heads into the playoffs with better odds than the New Orleans Saints’ 21 percent chance to win it all, according to Elo. That’s the third-lowest pre-playoff championship probability for a Super Bowl favorite since 1990, trailing only the 2015 Carolina Panthers and 2009 San Diego Chargers at 20 percent apiece. It’s also much lower than the 30 percent average for the typical pre-playoff favorite before this year.Overall, this year’s favorites are less likely to win the Super Bowl than usual — meaning the Saints and Kansas City Chiefs have a lower probability than the typical top two going into the playoffs — while most of the lesser teams have a better chance than you’d expect to see in an average year. BAL1627601650Lamar Jackson-4261 BUF59BUF55BUF 42, MIA 17-5.5– NO87NO77CAR 33, NO 14+13.3– PICKWIN PROB.PICKWIN PROB.ResultREADERS’ NET PTS 9Seahawks4–2– With the NFL’s playoff bracket finally set, it’s time to survey the field and handicap the race for the Super Bowl. What’s interesting about this season is that there are plenty of very good teams but few that could be classified as truly dominant. Nine teams have an Elo rating1FiveThirtyEight’s pet measure for team quality, in which 1500 is roughly average. of at least 1600, but none of them has cracked 1700 on the eve of the playoffs. In only one other season since 1990 — when the NFL expanded its postseason to the current format — have this many teams been squeezed into the 1600-to-1700 range on the Elo scale, and even that season (2015) had one team above 1700: LAC64LAC70LAC 23, DEN 9+1.8– CHI164061%1644Mitchell Trubisky+1866% Given all of this, the wild-card round could take on more significance than usual, since it’s not a stretch to imagine one of the teams playing this weekend taking home the Lombardi Trophy when all is said and done.If Elo had to pick a favorite from that category, it would be the Chicago Bears, who are currently tied for third in the league in Elo and will host the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles (tied for No. 7) on Sunday at 4:40 p.m. ET. Chicago finished the regular season having allowed the league’s fewest points, so this is a classic Monsters-of-the-Midway Bears team in that sense. But quarterback Mitchell Trubisky is also playing much better than the typical Chicago QB from playoffs past — he’s no Jim Miller or Rex Grossman, for instance. According to ESPN’s Total Quarterback Rating,2Which rates QBs on their passing and rushing performance on a 0-100 scale. Trubisky was the NFL’s third most effective quarterback on a per-play basis this season. While he had some lows (such as a dreadful 29.5 QBR in an opening-week loss to the Packers) to go with the highs (like a 98.9 QBR vs. Tampa Bay in Week 4, one of the highest single-game marks on record), Trubisky’s strides as a second-year passer helped Chicago’s offense — which ranked a respectable 13th in expected points added — be more in line with its dominating defense.In fact, according to our experimental quarterback-adjusted Elo ratings, Trubisky enters Sunday’s game with the best QB adjustment of any Bears postseason signal-caller since the 1986 Super Bowl, when Jim McMahon was worth approximately 36 more points of Elo than an average quarterback (and promptly shredded the New England Patriots defense for 256 yards and a 104.2 passer rating in a 46-10 rout). Trubisky himself is worth an estimated 18 points of Elo, which is why Chicago stands out if we map out the QB adjustment and base (QB-neutral) Elo rating for each of this year’s wild-card-round combatants: Even though the readers knew about various Week 17 roster shenanigans (such as resting starters) and Elo didn’t, the algorithm did what it’s been doing most of the season, beating the field by an average of 5 points per reader. (Elo beat the average reader 16 times in 17 weeks during the regular season.) Readers picked up points for trusting Luck and Indy against the Blaine Gabbert-led Titans in Sunday night’s do-or-die regular-season finale, and they also got credit for fading the Saints, who were resting starters against the Panthers in a meaningless contest. But at times that knowledge came back to haunt them, such as when they dropped the odds of the Ezekiel Elliott-less Cowboys against the Giants, only to see Dallas storm back and win. (And it was odd to see Elo underestimate the Browns, which it’s been doing all season, only to have that work out at season’s end.)Either way, congrats to Jake Horowitz, who led all identified users in Week 17 with 294.2 points, and to good ol’ Greg Chili Van Hollebeke, who hung on to his No. 1 ranking for the season with 1,168.1 points. Thanks to everyone who has been playing — and the game isn’t over yet! You should keep making picks and trying your luck against Elo throughout the playoffs.Check out our latest NFL predictions. KC88KC86KC 35, OAK 3-2.3– LAR85LAR83LAR 48, SF 32-2.6– 6Ravens6–5– GB65GB67DET 31, GB 0-4.4– This year’s playoffs are more wide-open than usualProbability of winning the Super Bowl by rank (among playoff field) for the 2018 season and the average of the 1990-2017 seasons, according to FiveThirtyEight Elo ratings NE89NE86NE 38, NYJ 3-2.6– Elo’s dumbest (and smartest) picks of Week 17Average difference between points won by readers and by Elo in Week 17 matchups in FiveThirtyEight’s NFL prediction game TEN62%IND55%IND 33, TEN 17+15.1– HOU71HOU74HOU 20, JAX 3-0.1–
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. British forces need more “non-lethal” options to disable our enemies, the defence head has said. General Sir Nick Carter warned that the world is a less stable place than at any time in his 42-year career.The pace of change is “more profound than anything humanity has experienced outside of the two world wars,” he saidSpeaking to an international audience at a Defence and Security event in London, the Chief of the Defence Staff said the British military needed to develop more non-lethal options to give politicians greater options in future conflicts.He cautioned that challenges to the international rules-based order at the pace of recent years inevitably “breeds instability”.“We are living through a period of phenomenal change,” he said. Activities short of actual combat such as cyber attacks – increasingly referred to as the grey zone – mean that highly technical military technology is often rendered redundant.The military needed to have “smaller and faster capabilities to avoid detection…and emphasise the non-lethal disabling of enemy capabilities thereby increasing the range of political and strategic choice,” General Nick said.Although not naming Russia or China specifically, the head of the armed forces said: “We’ve returned to an era of great power competition reminiscent of the first half of the last century, and the threats to our country…are materialising faster than anyone might have anticipated. “This is compounded by a rapidly evolving character of conflict brought on by the pervasiveness of information and the extraordinary advances in technology.”“We are now being challenged on multiple fronts,” he said.His comments were echoed by Steven Lovegrove, the Permanent Under Secretary at the MoD, who cautioned that a reliance on traditional hard military power was no longer sufficient to counter aggressive activity from states such as Russia.“Constant competition with rivals in the so-called grey zone is increasing the focus on military capabilities which are not designed to have a kinetic or lethal impact in the way that conventional capabilities tend to be.”
It’s been a long time since a Canadian hockey team has won the NHL’s ultimate prize, the Stanley Cup. The last time the cup made a trip to the frozen tundra of the North was eighteen years ago when the Montreal Canadians beat the L.A. Kings in 1993. This long drought has caused a national frustration and rage to build, one that we saw unleashed in the rioting that took place last year when the Canucks lost to the Boston Bruins in game 7 of the Stanley Cup playoffs. In an effort to ease the pain of the millions of hockey fans in their country, a team of students from the University of Manitoba’s Autonomous Agents Laboratory decided to create the next Wayne Gretzky, not through genetics, but by using robotics. The result is “Jennifer,” the world’s first autonomous humanoid robot hockey player.Jennifer has the ability to puck-handle, skate, and shoot somewhat accurately. While her slapshot certainly doesn’t rival that of the “Great One,” Jennifer can strike a street-hockey ball hard enough to get it through two cones several feet away. Of course I jest about the reason behind her construction, as she was built as Manitoba University’s entry into the 2012 DARwIn-OP (Dynamic Anthropomorphic Robot with Intelligence – Open Platform) Humanoid Appliance Challenge. The challenge pits various university groups against one another to see which team can create the best robot–one that demonstrates both artificial intelligence and independent movement. Jennifer will find out in March if she made it as a finalists. She will then have to perform a five-minute demonstration to a panel of judges. Perhaps some of the Canadian hockey teams might want to send scouts to see her in action, they can use all the help they can get.Read more at The University of Manitoba, via Spectrum
It’s obvious that Japan is in the know when it comes to manga, anime, and games about food. But this time, they’ve thrown a little high fantasy into the mix with the debut of Grand Marche no Meikyu (Grand Marche Labyrinth).Explore the fantastic world of Grand Marche as you search for ingredients to make the ultimate in fantastical food. A boy and a girl take a bite of a mysterious apple, releasing adorable little food sprites who launch them on an epic adventure where they must create new recipes in order to gain magical powers.They discover new animals to throw into their magical stews, and on the way, create a party of food warriors and magicians who assist them.And what would a cooking adventure be without your own home base tavern, where the kitchen is full of magical beings who serve up the exotic ingredients you’ve freshly hunted? The clientele of your tavern are humans and fairy folk alike, and you must learn to please their palates for the honor of your restaurant. You could even find yourself cooking for royalty if you play your cards right!The characters in the game have such hilarious weapons as a giant double sided spoon and enormous salt and pepper shakers that defeat enemies with their spice.Who knew that cooking could be such an awesome, grandiose adventure?With this new mix of food and RPG adventure, we are super excited for the release of this game in the Autumn. The new free phone app game will be released for iOS and Android, featuring in-app purchases. It’s being developed by Indieszero, who is also responsible for such unique games as Theatrhythm Final Fantasy, Personal Trainer: Cooking, and America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking.This trailer is enough to get us super pumped for Grande Marche no Meikyuu. Let’s get slaying and cooking, everyone!
Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, TCI, June 3, 2016 – Guests joke about it on Trip Advisor calling the illegal jitneys operating as legitimate public transportation, the TCI’s version of ‘uber’… saying we had uber before uber was ever launched in the US as a regulated form of transportation, which allows private people to use their personal vehicles as public taxi cabs.But now it is reaching a head and the Ministry of Tourism today speaks up because apparently, more and more tourists are taking jitneys as taxi cabs. “The Ministry of Tourism does not support this action and would like to encourage all visitors to refrain from using jitney services. The Ministry is further soliciting assistance from hoteliers and the general public alike, to ensure that visitors are aware of the same.” What is awkward here is that thousands of residents have no choice but to use this form of transportation in the absence of a public bus system and with no way to get a taxi even if they wanted to. But there is no talk of residents’ safety; Government in the release is focused strictly on the guests.Since February 2013, there had been a promise by the PNP Administration to run a survey to assess how the country could and would institute proper public transportation. This problem of jitneys has been allowed to fester for at least the last decade despite reports of robberies, rapes, smelly, hot vehicles, horrific driving and overcrowded cars loaded with strangers.Many have spoken up on it including the Leader of the Opposition PDM and Chairman of Cabinet, Governor Peter Beckingham who has urged the Government to create a transportation policy. The Ministry was adamant today with, “Jitney service operations are not regulated in the Turks and Caicos Islands and are illegal. The Ministry of Tourism is keen on ensuring the safety of all visitors to these Islands and as such, strongly advise against this act.” Magnetic Media has reached out to the Ministry of Tourism about why they are not as keen on ensuring the safety of residents who are forced to use this mode of transportation, often with their children in tow, every single day. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp
KUSI Newsroom FacebookTwitter August 13, 2018 KUSI Newsroom, Posted: August 13, 2018 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – UC San Diego is number 2 on Money magazine’s annual list of the 50 Best Colleges in the U.S., released Monday.Money based the rankings on a number of factors, including median SAT and ACT scores, graduation rates, estimated tuition costs with and without monetary aid, average student debt and alumni earnings.UCSD finished runner-up to Princeton University and ahead of UC Irvine, UCLA and Stanford University, which rounded out the top five.San Diego State University ranked 79th on the list, while the University of San Diego ranked 388th.The magazine put the estimated cost to attend UCSD in 2018-19 at $32,900 without aid and $15,900 with aid, and the percentage of students who get grants at 95 percent. The average UCSD student’s debt is $18,500, while early career earnings are estimated at $58.600, according to the magazine’s data.To be considered for the rankings, each university has to have at least 500 students, sufficient data for analysis, not be in financial distress and have a graduation rate equal to or higher than the median for the institution’s category. In total, 727 schools met the requirements and were then weighted by education quality, affordability and outcomes.“These rankings demonstrate what millions of students and alumni already know: the University of California provides a transformative and affordable education for talented young people from all walks of life,” said UC President Janet Napolitano. Categories: Local San Diego News University California San Diego ranked second-best University in United States
MIAMI (WSVN) – The Miami Marlins will be hosting a job fair, Tuesday, to fill spots for the upcoming MLB All-Star Game, which will be held at Marlins Park.According to the Marlins’ website, the job fair will take place at Marlins Park, located at 501 Marlins Way in Miami, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The organization will be looking to hire in three areas:Guest servicesRetail operations50/50 raffle ticket sellersThe website states, “Individuals will be required to attend paid orientation and training sessions prior to July 3rd.”Potential employees will also be required to attend the job fair to be considered for employment, the website said.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Aperture, BusinessWeek, Domino, the Economist, Field & Stream, Gourmet, Harper’s Magazine, Martha Stewart Living, Men’s Health, Mother Jones, the Nation, New York Times Magazine, People, O, The Oprah Magazine, Slate and W each received a pair of nods.First-time finalists include Nerve Media’s Babble.com, Bloomberg Markets, Budget Travel, Chow, Domino, Good, Paste, Play and T (the New York Times sports and style magazines), Radar and Condé Nast Portfolio.According to the American Society of Magazine Editors, this year’s awards competition drew 1,964 entries from 333 print and online magazines.The winners of the 42nd annual competition will be announced at a ceremony at Lincoln Center in New York on May 1.The full list of nominees:Circulation under 100,000ApertureThe Georgia ReviewMetropolisPrintThe Virginia Quarterly ReviewCirculation 100,000-250,000Foreign PolicyMother JonesPastePhiladelphia MagazineRadar Circulation 250,000-500,000BackpackerCookieNew York MagazineWWondertimeCirculation 500,000–1,000,000Budget TravelThe EconomistGQNational Geographic AdventureWiredCirculation 1,000,000–2,000,000Men’s HealthThe New YorkerPlay, The New York Times Sports MagazinePopular MechanicsVanity Fair Circulation over 2,000,000GlamourMartha Stewart LivingNational GeographicPeopleTime PERSONAL SERVICE: This category recognizes excellence in service journalism. The advice or instruction presented should help readers improve the quality of their personal lives.Field & StreamGood HousekeepingO, The Oprah MagazinePopular Mechanics (two nominations)LEISURE INTERESTS: This category recognizes excellent service journalism about leisure-time pursuits. The practical advice or instruction presented should help readers enjoy hobbies or other recreational interests.DominoField & StreamMen’s HealthNew York MagazineTime Out Chicago REPORTING: This category recognizes excellence in reporting. It honors the enterprise, exclusive reporting and intelligent analysis that a magazine exhibits in covering an event, a situation or a problem of contemporary interest and significance.National GeographicNew York Times MagazineThe New Yorker (two nominations)Vanity FairPUBLIC INTEREST: This category recognizes journalism that sheds new light on an issue of public importance and has the potential to affect national or local debate or policy.5280Bloomberg MarketsBusinessWeekThe NationThe New Yorker FEATURE WRITING: This category recognizes excellence in feature writing. The award honors the stylishness, flair and originality with which the author treats his or her subject.Atlanta MagazineGQNew York MagazineThe New YorkerVanity Fair PROFILE WRITING: This category recognizes excellence in profile writing. The award honors the vividness and perceptiveness with which the writer brings his or her subject to life.The AtlanticLos Angeles MagazineNew YorkerNew York Times MagazineVanity FairESSAYS: This category recognizes excellence in essay writing on topics ranging from the personal to the political. Whatever the subject, the award honors the author’s eloquence, perspective, fresh thinking and unique voice.The AtlanticElleEntertainment WeeklyHarper’sNew LettersThe New YorkerCOLUMNS and COMMENTARY: This category recognizes excellence in short-form political, social, economic or humorous commentary. The award honors the eloquence, force of argument and succinctness with which the writer presents his or her views. Inc.New York MagazineThe New YorkerRolling StoneSlate REVIEWS and CRITICISM: This category recognizes excellence in criticism of art, books, movies, television, theater, music, dance, food, dining, fashion, products and the like. The award honors the knowledge, persuasiveness and original voice that the critic brings to his or her reviews.The AtlanticGQThe NationNew York MagazineThe New YorkerMAGAZINE SECTION: This category recognizes the excellence of a regular department or editorial section of a magazine, either front- or back-of-book, and composed of a variety of elements, both text and visual. The award honors the section’s voice, originality, and unified design and packaging.Condé Nast PortfolioEsquireGoodO, The Oprah MagazineWiredSINGLE-TOPIC ISSUE: This category recognizes magazines that have devoted an issue to an in-depth examination of one topic. The award honors the ambition, comprehensiveness and imagination with which a magazine treats its subject.DeparturesDominoGourmetIEEE SpectrumThe Virginia Quarterly Review DESIGN: This category recognizes excellence in magazine design. The award honors the effectiveness of overall design, artwork, graphics and typography in enhancing a magazine’s unique mission and personality.GoodGQNew York MagazineT, The New York Times Style MagazineVanity FairWired PHOTOGRAPHY: This category recognizes excellence in magazine photography. The award honors the effectiveness of photography, photojournalism and photo illustration in enhancing a magazine’s unique mission and personality.GourmetGQMartha Stewart LivingNational GeographicNew York Magazine W PHOTOJOURNALISM: This category recognizes the informative photographic documentation of an event or subject in real-time.ApertureMother JonesNational GeographicThe New Yorker The Virginia Quarterly ReviewPHOTO PORTFOLIO: This category honors creative photography and photo illustration (including portraiture or specially produced layouts on fashion, food, decorating, travel, design, the arts, etc.).New York MagazineNewsweekT, The New York Times Style Magazine (two nominations) Vanity FairFICTION: This category recognizes excellence in magazine fiction writing. The award honors the quality of a publication’s literary selections.Harper’s MagazineMcSweeney’s QuarterlyThe New YorkerThe Paris ReviewZoetrope: All-Story GENERAL EXCELLENCE ONLINE: This category recognizes outstanding magazine websites, as well as online-only magazines that feature original content. The award honors sites that convey a distinct editorial identity and create a unique magazine environment on the Web. Babble.comChow.comNewYorker.comRunners World.comSlate.comPERSONAL SERVICE ONLINE: Previously known as Interactive Service, this category recognizes an outstanding service feature on the web. It honors a site’s creative use of multimedia technology, user involvement and community tools, and/or exceptional work in the blog form.BusinessWeek.comNYmag.comPeople.comSelf.comSI.comINTERACTIVE FEATURE: This category recognizes an outstanding interactive section of the website, featuring news, entertainment, and other subjects that do not offer practical instruction or advice. It honors a site’s creative use of multimedia technology, user involvement and community tools, and/or exceptional work in the blog form.Bicycling.comEconomist.comESPN.comEssence.comNational Geographic OnlineFor more information, including links to nominated articles, click here. Check FOLIOmag.com throughout the day for updates to this story. The list of finalists for the 2008 National Magazine Awards—the magazine world’s equivalent of the Oscars—is out, and the New Yorker leads the field with 12 nominations.Adam Moss’ New York magazine—which snagged five awards out of its seven nominations in 2007—received nine.Shockingly, perennial contender Esquire—which garnered seven nominations last year—received just one. Twenty-four other titles received multiple nominations, including Vanity Fair (6), GQ (5), National Geographic (5), The Atlantic (3), Popular Mechanics (3), T: The New York Times Style Magazine (3), The Virginia Quarterly Review (3) and Wired (3).
Share your voice Now playing: Watch this: Comments 2:25 5G is the wireless technology that promises to be significantly faster and more responsive than previous generations of wireless. The FCC plans to conduct 5G auctions in three other spectrum bands in 2019.The partial shutdown began on Dec. 22 after the House of Representatives and Senate failed to come to agreement on President Trump’s demand for $5 billion to fund work on a border wall. The shutdown is expected to continue even after Democrats officially take control of the House of Representatives on Thursday, when the new Congress convenes in Washington.Still, the shutdown at the agency will affect hundreds of federal workers, as well as millions of consumers. The agency will suspend its consumer complaint and inquiry lines and will cease all consumer protection and enforcement activity. It will also suspend any licensing activity for the broadcast, wireless or wireline industries, which it regulates. This means the agency will temporarily put on hold merger reviews, like that for the Sprint-T-Mobile deal, which is pending.The FCC will also suspend testing of devices that must be authorized by the agency for sale in the US. You can read the commission’s full orderly shutdown plans on its website.The Smartest Stuff: Innovators are thinking up new ways to make you, and the things around you, smarter.5G is your next big upgrade: Everything you need to know about the 5G revolution. 3 Tags Chairman Ajit Pai (second from right) and commissioners Jessica Rosenworcel, Michael O’Rielly and Brendan Carr will be among the few FCC employees showing up to work, while the agency is closed. FCC The Federal Communications Commission will shut down most of its operations on Thursday, if President Trump can’t reach an agreement with Democrats over the federal government’s partial shutdown.The FCC said Wednesday that without funding it will cease most activities as of midday Jan. 3, “other than those immediately necessary for the protection of life or property, performing other excepted activities, or those funded through a source other than lapsed appropriations.”As a result of the shutdown, a majority of the agency’s employees will be furloughed, with fewer than 20 percent who will continue working. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and the three commissioners — Michael O’Rielly, Brendan Carr and the lone Democrat on the commission, Jessica Rosenworcel — will continue to work. One thing not affected by the shutdown will be the agency’s first 5G wireless spectrum auction, which is auctioning off licenses in the 28 gigahertz and 24 GHz spectrum bands, according to the FCC. The auction will resume as scheduled on Thursday. The auction, which began in November, was paused during the holiday break and is expected to continue for the foreseeable future, but will likely wrap up soon. Internet Services 5G smartphones are coming FCC
Washington: US President Donald Trump on Thursday said it was up to India and Pakistan to resolve the Kashmir dispute but he was ready to assist if the two South Asian neighbours wanted him to help in resolving the decades-old issue. Trump was referring to his last week’s meeting with Pakistan PM Imran Khan, wherein he offered to help resolve the Kashmir issue. Also Read – US judge dismissed criminal case against Jeffrey Epstein Advertise With Us India has rejected the offer, while Pakistan has welcomed his statement. “It’s really up to PM(Narendra) Modi (to accept the offer of mediation),” Trump told reporters responding to a question on India not accepting his offer of mediation on Kashmir. “Have they accepted the offer or not?”, Trump sought a clarification when asked about India’s rejection of his mediation offer. Also Read – Watch: Donald Trump says Florida faces absolute monster hurricane Advertise With Us “I think they are fantastic people – Khan and Modi – I mean. I would imagine they could get along very well, but if they wanted somebody to intervene, to help them…. and I spoke with Pakistan about that and I spoke frankly in (sic) India about it,” Trump said. He rued that the issue of Kashmir had been going on for a long time. When asked how would he “want to resolve the Kashmir issue”, Trump said, “If I can, if they wanted me to, I would certainly intervene.” Advertise With Us However, India on Friday categorically rejected Trump’s offer to act as a mediator between New Delhi and Islamabad to resolve Kashmir issue and reiterated that it is a bilateral issue. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar made it clear to his American counterpart Mike Pompeo that any discussion on Kashmir, if at all warranted, will only be with Pakistan and only bilaterally.
Citation: New stars discovered in the Rho Ophiuchi Dark Cloud (2016, May 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-05-stars-rho-ophiuchi-dark-cloud.html More information: arxiv.org/pdf/1605.07365.pdf Rho Ophiuchi Dark Cloud is a dark nebula of gas and dust located some 460 light years away in the constellation of Ophiuchus, making it one of the closest stellar nurseries to our planet. This dense nest of stellar objects is a perfect target for astronomers to search for newborn baby stars.Recently, Pillitteri and his colleagues decided to conduct a detailed X-ray study of this cloud to track down possible newly born stars. They have analyzed the data provided by ESA’s XMM-Newton space observatory, which observed the multiple star system Rho Ophiuchi and its surroundings in August 2013. The spacecraft is able to conduct narrow- and broad-range spectroscopy and to perform simultaneous imaging of objects in both X-ray and optical wavelengths, enabling detailed studies of star-forming regions.Three European photon imaging cameras (EPIC) mounted on XMM-Newton allowed the scientists to detect dozens of X-ray sources, 22 of which turned out to be diskless class III young stars.”We detected 89 X-ray sources (…) Based on infrared and X-ray properties, we can distinguish between young stellar objects belonging to the cloud and background objects. Among the cloud members, we detect three debris disk objects and 22 diskless class III young stars,” the researchers wrote in the paper.According to the study, these stars belong to a small cluster born about five to 10 million years ago during a previous event of star formation just north of a dense core of the cloud, designated L1688. This core itself is believed to contain a stellar population of about 300 young stellar objects. The age of the cluster could be confirmed by the near absence of stars with disks. The scientists try to explain this absence: “We speculate that the densest part cloud was larger in the past and that a fraction of the stars have since migrated away from the cloud. What we observe now is the patchy ‘left-over’ cloud of a process of star formation that did not occur uniformly across the cloud,” the paper reads.The astronomers noted that a proper indication of the age of the stellar objects in Rho Ophiuchi Dark Cloud along with assessment of the ratio of stars without disks to stars still bearing a disk could be crucial to our understanding of star-forming processes in stellar nurseries. They endorse future X-ray observations of multi-core clouds, emphasizing that current motion studies and infrared observations are unsatisfactory for regions distant than 3,000 light years.”Proper motion studies have insufficient sensitivity, photometric selection is strongly contaminated by field stars, and spectroscopic selection requires an enormous effort to study hundreds or thousands of stars – even when using new multi-fiber facilities. Infrared studies are helpful (when crowding is not extreme), but they are sensitive only to stars with circumstellar material, bright in infrared, but insensitive to objects without disks, i.e., class III pre-main-sequence stars,” the scientists wrote. © 2016 Phys.org Star-forming ring spotted around distant supergiant star Kappa Ori Main panel: composite RGB image of WISE images and X-rays. Channel bands: blue = EPIC 0.3-8.0 keV; green = 3.4µm; red = 22 µm. The team indicated the XMM-Newton pointing and the L1688 region which has been extensively studied. ρ Ophiuchi sits at the center of a ring of warm dust that has likely been cleared by its stellar winds. Inset image: composite RGB image of EPIC MOS and PN. Channel bands: red = 0.3-1.0 keV; green = 1.0-3.0 keV; blue = 3.0-8.0 keV. Different colors of the XMM-Newton sources indicate soft (yellow) or hard (blue) X-ray spectra. Image credit: Pillitteri et al., 2016 An international team of astronomers led by Ignazio Pillitteri of the Palermo Astronomical Observatory in Italy has announced the discovery of 22 new young stellar objects in a star-forming region called the Rho Ophiuchi Dark Cloud. The newly detected stars constitute a small cluster formed about five to 10 million years ago. The findings are presented in a research paper published online on May 24 on arXiv.org. Explore further 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.
Before the LG V40 ThinQ comes in and takes on the Galaxy Note 9, here is an offer from both Sprint and Best Buy that you would love to check out and you guessed it; it involves the LG G7 ThinQ. The flagship can be bought through Sprint’s Flex leasing program, which will now cost you only $16.50 per month for 18 months. That is a 50 percent price decrease because the smartphone was being offered at $33 per month before the deal came along.After the 18 months are up, you can either return the smartphone to Sprint or pay the device off. This will mean that you will have to pay for 6 more months in one full downpayment, becoming the proud owner of the smartphone. So in a nutshell, this means that aside from paying $297 during that 18-month period, you have to pay $99 more to officially own the smartphone, which essentially means that you will be paying less than $400 for a smartphone that competes against the Galaxy S9, the Mi 8 and several devices in the premium class.This certainly looks like a deal that you will be interested in. Just imagine, a Snapdragon 845 and 4GB of RAM coupled with a decent design plus a gorgeous MLCD+ display for just under $400? It is going to be very difficult to come across a deal like this again in the future, so make sure that you take full advantage of it as soon as possible.Buy the LG G7 ThinQ at 50% off from Best Buy and Sprint Share Tweet Submit
Feature | August 05, 2019 | Dave Fornell, Editor Most Popular Radiology and Radiotherapy Topics in July 2019 August 5, 2019 — Here is the list of the most popular content on the Imaging Technology New (ITN) magazine website fr read more Catalyst PT image courtesy of C-RAD Following radiation, the bone marrow shows nearly complete loss of blood cells in mice (left). Mice treated with the PTP-sigma inhibitor displayed rapid recovery of blood cells (purple, right). Credit: UCLA Broad Stem Cell Research Center/Nature Communications News | Proton Therapy | August 06, 2019 IBA Signs Contract to Install Proton Therapy Center in Kansas IBA (Ion Beam Applications S.A.) recently signed a contract and received the first payment for a Proteus One solution… read more News | Radiation Therapy | August 16, 2019 Drug Accelerates Blood System’s Recovery After Radiation, Chemotherapy A drug developed by UCLA physician-scientists and chemists speeds up the regeneration of mouse and human blood stem… read more News | Radiation Oncology | July 31, 2019 Laura Dawson, M.D., FASTRO, Chosen as ASTRO President-elect The members of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) elected four new officers to ASTRO’s Board of… read more News | Patient Positioning Radiation Therapy | August 15, 2019 Mevion and C-RAD Release Integration for Improved Proton Therapy Treatment Quality Mevion Medical Systems and C-RAD announced the integration between the C-RAD Catalyst PT and the Mevion S250i proton… read more Related Content News | Brachytherapy Systems | August 14, 2019 Efficacy of Isoray’s Cesium Blu Showcased in Recent Studies August 14, 2019 — Isoray announced a trio of studies recently reported at scientific meetings and published in medica read more News | June 01, 2012 First Patient Successfully Completes Treatment at ProCure Proton Therapy Center in N.J. News | Patient Positioning Radiation Therapy | August 07, 2019 Qfix kVue One Proton Couch Top Validated by Mevion Medical Systems Qfix and Mevion Medical Systems announced that a special version of the kVue One Proton couch top is now both validated… read more The MD Anderson Proton Therapy Center expansion is expected to be completed in 2023. Rendering courtesy of Stantec. News | Radiation Therapy | August 15, 2019 First Patient Enrolled in World’s Largest Brain Cancer Clinical Trial Henry Ford Cancer Institute is first-in-the-world to enroll a glioblastoma patient in the GBM AGILE Trial (Adaptive… read more The top piece of content in July was a video interview explaining how Princess Margaret Cancer Center is using machine learning to create automated treatment plans. This was a hot topic at the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) 2019 meeting in July. June 1, 2012 —Frank Mackinson of Bound Brook, N.J., became the first patient to complete treatment at the ProCure Proton Therapy Center in Somerset, N.J. The Somerset Center opened officially on March 20, one month ahead of schedule, enabling Mackinson to begin treatment on March 28. Proton therapy is a precise form of radiation treatment for cancer without many of the short- and long-term side effects often experienced with standard X-ray radiation.Mackinson’s therapy regimen was directed at a solitary plasmacytoma of the paranasal sinuses that had been eroding into the skull base and brain. “Two weeks into my treatment, I noticed a marked improvement in my peripheral vision, which I had been gradually losing over the past three years,” Mackinson said.“We are thrilled that our first N.J. patient experienced tangible clinical and lifestyle improvements,” said Brian Chon, medical director of the ProCure Proton Therapy Center and Mackinson’s treating radiation oncologist. “It is only recently that proton therapy has been widely available to patients. I look forward to bringing protons to thousands of other patients like Mackinson in New Jersey, New York and the surrounding region.”Studies have shown proton therapy to be effective in treating many types of tumors, including brain, central nervous system, gastrointestinal, head and neck, lung and prostate, as well as sarcomas and many pediatric cancers. The precision of proton therapy makes it especially effective for treating children and adults with anatomically complex tumors, such as tumors along the spinal cord, at the base of the skull and in the sinuses, like Mackinson’s.The ProCure Therapy Center in Somerset is the first proton treatment facility in the New York metropolitan area. It is only the 10th such center in the nation.For more information: www.procure.com/nj FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 News | Radiation Therapy | August 02, 2019 Varian Showcases Cancer Care Systems and Software at AAPM 2019 Varian showcased systems and software from its cancer care portfolio, including the Identify Guidance System, at the… read more News | Proton Therapy | August 08, 2019 MD Anderson to Expand Proton Therapy Center The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center unveiled plans to expand its Proton Therapy Center during a… read more
Technology | Mammography Reporting Software | July 25, 2019 Hologic Partners With MagView to Develop Unifi EQUIP Solution Hologic announced a partnership with mammography information solutions provider MagView to develop Unifi EQUIP, an… read more October 28, 2013 — Radiologists at ProMedica Toledo Hospital Breast Care Center have a new tool to help evaluate breast tissue density on a mammogram. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-cleared VolparaDensity is a breast imaging software tool that uses complex physics and software to measure the amount of tissue within a patient’s breast. This information is used by a breast imaging radiologist to decide if additional breast screening beyond a mammogram might be necessary. Technology | Breast Biopsy Systems | July 24, 2019 Fujifilm Releases Tomosynthesis Biopsy Option for Aspire Cristalle Mammography System Fujifilm Medical Systems U.S.A. Inc. recently expanded its breast imaging solutions with the launch of its… read more News | Mammography | August 14, 2019 Imago Systems Announces Collaboration With Mayo Clinic for Breast Imaging Image visualization company Imago Systems announced it has signed a know-how license with Mayo Clinic. The multi-year… read more Feature | Artificial Intelligence | July 19, 2019 | Michal Chorev AI Models Predict Breast Cancer With Radiologist-level Accuracy Breast cancer is the global leading cause of cancer-related deaths in women, and the most commonly diagnosed cancer… read more Qlarity Imaging’s software is used to assist radiologists in the assessment and characterization of breast lesions. Imaging features are synthesized by an artificial intelligence algorithm into a single value, the QI score, which is analyzed relative to a database of reference abnormalities with known ground truth. Image courtesy of Business Wire. Technology | Artificial Intelligence | July 18, 2019 Paragon Biosciences Launches Qlarity Imaging to Advance FDA-cleared AI Breast Cancer Diagnosis System Paragon Biosciences LLC announced the launch of its seventh portfolio company, Qlarity Imaging LLC, which was founded… read more Toledo Hospital is the first hospital in Ohio to offer VolparaDensity. Robin Shermis, M.D., medical director, Toledo Hospital Breast Care Center, said the center selected VolparaDensity because it offers a consistent and standardized approach to calculating breast density when used in conjunction with the radiologist. News | Breast Imaging | August 02, 2019 Volpara to Distribute Screenpoint Medical’s Transpara AI Solution Volpara Solutions and ScreenPoint Medical BV signed an agreement under which Volpara will sell ScreenPoint’s Transpara… read more News | PACS | August 09, 2019 Lake Medical Imaging Selects Infinitt for Multi-site RIS/PACS Infinitt North America will be implementing Infinitt RIS (radiology information system)/PACS (picture archiving and… read more Related Content For more information: www.promedica.org FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 News | October 28, 2013 Promedica Toledo Hospital Offers Innovative Tool for Detecting Breast Cancer Toledo Hospital is the first hospital in Ohio to offer VolparaDensity, a breast screening tool used to calculate breast density Image courtesy of Imago Systems News | Ultrasound Women’s Health | July 11, 2019 FDA Clears Koios DS Breast 2.0 AI-based Software Koios Medical announced its second 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). IBM collected a dataset of 52,936 images from 13,234 women who underwent at least one mammogram between 2013 and 2017, and who had health records for at least one year prior to the mammogram. The algorithm was trained on 9,611 mammograms. Image courtesy of Radiology. News | Artificial Intelligence | August 13, 2019 Artificial Intelligence Could Yield More Accurate Breast Cancer Diagnoses University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) researchers have developed an artificial intelligence (AI) system that… read more News | Mammography Reporting Software | July 26, 2019 Ikonopedia Releases Automated Combined Reporting Package at AHRA Ikonopedia showcased its recently released Automated Combined Reporting package and its entire suite of structured… read more “We evaluated other commercially available density measurement tools, but adopted VolparaDensity because it has been proven to offer a reliable and objective volumetric measurement,” said Shermis. “Our patients can take comfort in knowing that when they come to our center, they will be thoroughly assessed and vectored to additional screening in our effort to improve the early detection of cancer.” read more
With the advent of automation, artificial intelligence( AI), and machine learning, we hear about their applications regularly in news across industries. This has been especially true for healthcare where various hospitals, health insurance companies, healthcare units, etc. have been impacted in more substantial and concrete ways by AI when compared to other industries. In the recent years, healthcare startups and life science organizations have ventured into Artificial Intelligence technology and are one of the most heavily invested areas by VCs. Various organizations with ties to healthcare are leveraging the advances in artificial intelligence algorithms for remote patient monitoring, medical imaging and diagnostics, and implementing newly developed sophisticated methods, and applications into the system. Let’s explore some of the most popular AI applications which have revamped the healthcare industry. Proper maintenance and management of medical records Assembling, analyzing, and maintaining medical information and records is one of the most commonly used applications of AI. With the coming of digital automation, robots are being used for collecting and tracing data for proper data management and analysis. This has brought down manual labor to a considerable extent. Computerized medical consultation and treatment path The existence of medical consultation apps like DocsApp allows a user to talk to experienced and specialist doctors on chat or call directly from their phone in a private and secure manner. Users can report their symptoms into the app and this ensures the users are connected to the right specialist physicians as per the user’s medical history. This has been made possible due to the existence of AI systems. AI also aids in treatment design like analyzing data, making notes and reports from a patient’s file, thereby helping in choosing the right customized treatment as per the patient’s medical history. Eliminates monotonous manual labor Various medical tasks like analyzing X-Ray reports, test reports, CT scans and other common tasks can be executed by robots and other mechanical devices more accurately. Radiology is one such discipline wherein human supervision and control have dropped to a substantial level due to the extensive use of AI. Aids in drug manufacture and creation Generally, billions of dollars are spent on developing pharmaceuticals through clinical trials and they take almost a decade or two to manufacture a life-saving drug. But now, with the arrival of AI, the entire drug creation procedure has been simplified and has become pretty reasonable as well. Even in the recent outbreak of the Ebola virus, AI was used for drug discovery, to redesign solutions and to scan the current existing medicines to eradicate the plague. Regular health monitoring In the current era of digitization, there are certain wearable health trackers – like Garmin, Fitbit, etc. which can monitor your heart rate and activity levels. These devices help the user to keep a close check on their health by setting up their exercise plan, or reminding them to stay hydrated. All this information can also be shared with your physician to track your current health status through AI systems. Helps in the early and accurate detection of medical disorders AI helps in spotting carcinogenic and cardiovascular disorders at an early stage and also aids in predicting health issues that people are likely to contract due to hereditary or genetic reasons. Enhances medical diagnosis and medication management Medical diagnosis and medication management are the ultimate data-based problems in the healthcare industry. IBM’s Watson, a deep learning system has simplified medical investigation and is being applied to oncology, specifically for cancer diagnosis. Previously, human doctors used to collect patient data, research on it and conduct clinical trials. But with AI, the manual efforts have reduced considerably. For medication management, certain apps have been developed to monitor the medicines taken by a patient. The cellphone camera in conjunction with AI technology to check whether the patients are taking the medication as prescribed. Further, this also helps in detecting serious medical problems and tracking patients medicine adaptability and participants behavior in certain scientific trials. To conclude, we can connote that we are gradually embarking on the new era of cognitive technology with the power of AI-based systems. In the coming years, we can expect AI to transform every area of the healthcare industry that it brushes up with. Experts are constantly looking for ways and means to organize the existing structure and power up healthcare on the basis of new AI technology. The ultimate goals being to improve patient experience, build a better public health management and reduce costs by automating manual labor. Author Bio Maria Thomas is the Content Marketing Manager and Product Specialist at GreyCampus with eight years rich experience on professional certification courses like PMI- Project Management Professional, PMI-ACP, Prince2, ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library), Big Data, Cloud, Digital Marketing and Six Sigma. Read Next Healthcare Analytics: Logistic Regression to Reduce Patient ReadmissionsHow IBM Watson is paving the road for Healthcare 3.0
CoreLogic: Home Prices Post Greatest Yearly Gain in Almost 7 Years March 5, 2013 426 Views “”CoreLogic’s””:http://www.corelogic.com/ Home Price Index (HPI) saw its greatest yearly increase in nearly seven years in January, the analytics provider revealed Tuesday.[IMAGE]Home prices nationwide–including distressed sales–rose on a year-over-year basis by 9.7 percent in January. The spike represents the biggest increase since April 2006, CoreLogic said. The HPI analysis shows that all but two states experienced year-over-year price gains. The states with the highest price appreciation in January were Arizona (20.1 percent), Nevada (17.4 percent), Idaho (14.9 percent), California (14.1 percent), and Hawaii (14.0 percent). Delaware and Illinois, the only two states to report price depreciation, saw prices decline 0.1 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively.””The HPI showed strong growth during the typically slow winter season,”” said Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic. “”With these gains, the housing market is poised to enter the spring selling season on sound footing. The improvements are materializing across the country, with all but Delaware and Illinois showing increasing HPI and 15 states within 10 percent of their peak values.””On a month-over-month basis, home prices increased by 0.7 percent from January to December (following a revision to December’s findings). Excluding home sales, home prices increased on an annual basis by 9.0 percent in January. On a month-over-month basis, prices (excluding distressed sales) rose 1.8 percent. “”Home prices continued to gather steam across a broad swath of the country in January, continuing the positive trend we saw in most of 2012,”” said Anand Nallathambi, CoreLogic’s president and CEO. “”Many states across the western U.S. and along the East Coast saw average price gains of more than 6 percent, which is likely to boost home sale activity into the first half of 2013.””CoreLogic’s Pending HPI, a metric measuring current trends in home prices, indicates that prices (including distressed sales) in February will likely match January’s year-over-year gains, rising 9.7 percent over February 2012. However, February prices are expected to dip 0.3 percent on a monthly basis, reflecting a seasonal winter slowdown.Excluding distressed sales, February 2013 home prices are poised to rise 11.3 percent year-over-year and 1.8 percent month-over-month, CoreLogic said. in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies CoreLogic Home Equity Home Prices Home Values Housing Affordability Investors Lenders & Servicers Processing Service Providers 2013-03-05 Tory Barringer Share
A former co-op official said on Monday that Cyprus’ political elite discouraged reforms in the co-operative banking sector because local co-ops were controlled by political parties which allowed them to operate for years without complying with minimal corporate standards.This control reflected the leverage of the political parties in local communities, said Panayiotis Philippou, a former board member and chairman of the board of directors, according to the Cyprus News Agency.Philippou was testifying before the committee appointed by Attorney-General Costas Clerides to probe the breakdown of the state-owned Cyprus Co-operative Bank into which taxpayers pumped €1.7bn in the form of two capital injections in 2014 and 2015.The co-op supervisor — until 2013 the Authority for Supervision and Development of Co-operative Societies (ASDCS) — showed leniency towards the increasing problems the co-ops were facing, he said. Co-operatives that were not operated by members of professional groups lacked strict rules while exemptions from breaking the rules were common.Philippou singled out the co-ops of Polemi, Stroumpi, Achna and Ayia Napa in particular.The problems at the co-op, he continued, could not be resolved because it was impossible to fire the secretariat or the board of a co-operative.When in 2008, 118 independent co-operative credit institutions came under the “Central Agency”, giving them a lender of last resort, most of the co-operatives had practically little if no structures to internally monitor their operations, he said.Back then, only 12 co-operatives had internal audit systems, 28 showed weaknesses, while the rest 78 had no internal audit mechanisms, he said. While 35 co-operatives were unable to produce annual accounts, 58 did not even have an accountant.Every year, the Co-operative Companies’ Audit Service included all these irregularities in its reports filed to the ASDCS and the respective minister of commerce, in charge of the co-op’s affairs, before the latter forwarded them to the parliament’s (commerce) committee, Philippou said. He added that he believed that past ministers of commerce were aware of the situation.Decisionmakers carried out a merger in 2012 to 2013 which ultimately reduced the number of co-operatives from 118 to 93, in order to cover up mismanagement, he said and named as an example the Ayia Phyla co-operative which was rocked by the revelations of a fraud case three years ago.In some cases, co-operatives even extended loans to dead persons after they were presented with forged ID cards, he said.While co-operative banks serving specific professional groups had a lower non-performing loans ratio, they were forced to merge with other co-operatives to reduce the average ratio which ultimately meant that they too fell victims to the overall mismanagement, he said.Philippou said that in 2012, when Cyprus requested an international bailout caused by a combination of undercapitalised banks, an exploding deficit and recession, and the co-ops (equity) deficit was estimated in the range of €1bn to €2.5bn, there was no willingness in the bank to put reforms forward while some were proposing promotions.Philippou said that he returned to the co-op in 2015, three years after leaving out of love for the bank and in order to contribute.Another member of the board, Gregoris Maliotis, who served from June 2010 until October 2013, also testified at the committee on Monday. He said that co-operative credit institutions operated completely independently and uncontrolled while reports prepared by the Central Co-operative Bank had no effect.According to the CNA, Maliotis said that while it was unclear who was in charge of imposing penalties in cases of irregularities, there was also a secret agreement and unwritten law of not subjecting the secretariats of the co-operatives to sanctions.When asked whether he had considered resigning in protest over his proposals concerning the introduction of audit procedures and sanction in cases of non-compliance, he said that he opted to stay and struggle.Maliotis said that serious criminal cases such as those in Ayia Napa, Stroumpi, Ayia Phyla should be directly referred to the police.He added that the Central Co-operative Bank did not have a clearly defined role to carry out audits at the cooperatives and report to the supervisor.Cooperation with the supervisor was not a two-way street and as a result it was the board that was informing the supervisor and not vice-versa he said. You May LikeWeightLossHelper.org10 Ways To Keep Your Diabetes In CheckWeightLossHelper.orgUndoCampusPal10 Worst Paying College MajorsCampusPalUndoMental FlarePeople Are Sticking Wine Bottles In The Soil Of Their House Plants And It’s Actually BrilliantMental FlareUndo Bale’s China move called off by Real MadridUndoFilms and food at RialtoUndoLED-lighting the way by 2020Undoby Taboolaby Taboola