How your smart fridge might be mining bitcoin for criminals

first_imgLONDON – Is the web browser on your phone slower than usual? It could be mining bitcoin for criminals.As the popularity of virtual currencies has grown, hackers are focusing on a new type of heist: putting malicious software on peoples’ handsets, TVs and smart fridges that makes them mine for digital money.So-called “crypto-jacking” attacks have become a growing problem in the cybersecurity industry, affecting both consumers and organizations. Depending on the severity of the attack, victims may notice only a slight drop in processing power, often not enough for them to think it’s a hacking attack. But that can add up to a lot of processing power over a period of months or if, say, a business’s entire network of computers is affected.“We saw organizations whose monthly electricity bill was increased by hundreds of thousands of dollars,” said Maya Horowitz, Threat Intelligence Group Manager for Checkpoint, a cybersecurity company.Hackers try to use victims’ processing power because that is what’s needed to create — or “mine” — virtual currencies. In virtual currency mining, computers are used to make the complex calculations that verify a running ledger of all the transactions in virtual currencies around the world.Crypto-jacking is not done only by installing malicious software. It can also be done through a web browser. The victim visits a site, which latches onto the victim’s computer processing power to mine digital currencies as long as they are on the site. When the victim switches, the mining ends. Some websites, including, have tried to do it legitimately and been transparent about it. For three months this year, removed ads from its sites in exchange for users allowing them to mine virtual currencies.Industry experts first noted crypto-jacking as a threat in 2017, when virtual currency prices were skyrocketing to record highs.The price of bitcoin, the most widely known virtual currency, jumped six-fold from September to almost $20,000 in December before falling back down to under $10,000.The number of crypto-jacking cases soared from 146,704 worldwide in September to 22.4 million in December, according to anti-virus developer Avast. It has only continued to increase, to 93 million in May, it says.The first big case emerged in September and centred on Coinhive, a legitimate business that let website owners make money by allowing customers to mine virtual currency instead of relying on advertising revenue. Hackers quickly began to use the service to infect vulnerable sites with miners, most notably YouTube and nearly 50,000 WordPress websites, according to research conducted by Troy Mursch, a researcher on crypto-jacking.Mursch says Monero is the most popular virtual currency among cyber-criminals. A report by cybersecurity company Palo Alto Networks estimates that over 5 per cent of Monero was mined through crypto-jacking. That is worth almost $150 million dollars and doesn’t count mining that occurs through browsers.In the majority of attacks, hackers infect as many devices as possible, a method experts calls “spray and pray.”“Basically, everyone with a (computer processing unit) can be targeted by crypto-jacking,” said Ismail Belkacim, a developer of an application that prevents websites from mining virtual currencies.As a result, some hackers target organizations with large computing power. In what they believe might be the biggest crypto-jacking attack so far, Checkpoint discovered in February that a hacker had been exploiting a vulnerability in a server that over several months generated over $3 million in Monero.Crypto-jackers have also recently targeted organizations that use cloud-based services, in which a network of servers is used to process and store data, providing more computing power to companies who haven’t invested in extra hardware.Abusing this service, crypto-jackers use as much power as the cloud will allow them to, maximizing their gains. For businesses, this results in slower performance and higher energy bills.Martin Hron, a security researcher at Avast, says that besides the rise in interest in virtual currencies, there are two main reasons for the rise in attacks.First, crypto-jacking scripts require little skill to implement. Ready-made computer code that automates crypto-mining is easy to find with a Google search, along with tips on the vulnerabilities of devices.Second, crypto-jacking is harder to detect and is more anonymous than other hacks. Unlike ransomware, in which victims have to transfer money to regain access to their computers blocked by hackers, a victim of crypto-jacking might never know their computer is being used to mine currency. And as currency generated by crypto-jacking goes straight into a hacker’s encrypted wallet, the cyber-criminal leaves less of a trail.Both Apple and Google have started to ban applications that mine virtual currencies on their devices. But Hron, the Avast researcher, warns that the risk is growing as more everyday devices are connected to the internet — from ovens to home lighting systems — and that these are often the least secure. Hron said that cheaply made Chinese devices were particularly easy to hack.Some experts say new techniques like artificial intelligence can help get a faster response to suspicious software.That’s what Texthelp, an education technology company, used when it was infected with a crypto-jacker, said Martin McKay, the company’s chief technology officer. “The risk was mitigated for all customers within a period of four hours.”But security researcher Mursch says that these precautions won’t be enough.“They might reduce the impact,” he says, “But I don’t think we’re going to stop it.”last_img read more

Trump and Trudeau discuss detained Canadians in China

first_imgTORONTO — Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office says Trudeau and U.S. President Donald Trump have agreed to continue to seek the release of two Canadians detained in China in apparent retaliation for the arrest of a top Chinese tech executive.Trudeau spoke to Trump on Monday and his office says he thanked Trump for strong U.S. statements “in response to the arbitrary detention of two Canadians in China.”The two also spoke about the U.S. extradition request of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou who was arrested while changing planes in Vancouver on Dec. 1. Meng faces fraud charges in the U.S.Nine days later, the Chinese detained Canadian ex-diplomat Michael Kovrig and entrepreneur Michael Spavor on vague allegations of “engaging in activities that endanger the national security” of China.Rob Gillies, The Associated Presslast_img read more

UN survey finds most companies not reporting on social environmental risks

Co-authored by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), in partnership with the private firms SustainAbility and Standard & Poor, the survey points out that despite an increasing demand by investors, analysts, lenders and insurers, only three of the “Top 50″ companies revealed their assessment of the key environmental and social risks in their reports this year.”Corporate governance is the hottest topic,” SustainAbility Chairman John Elkington said in a statement, “but recent scandals have meant most boards are focused on financial integrity issues – to the detriment of the bigger picture of non-financial risks and opportunities.”Describing efforts to ensure that leading companies integrate their reporting in ways that help investors and analysts as “a challenge,” he said he was hopeful that the next year “will see leadership companies setting new standards.”Despite minimal reporting by corporations, Monique Barbut, director of UNEP’s technology, industry and economics division, sounded optimistic, as well. “It’s striking that 47 out of 50 top reporters are using the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Guidelines,” she said in a statement. “Without doubt, sustainability reporting is going mainstream.” read more

Convicted Croatian Serb exleader commits suicide before he was to testify at

Milan Babic, who had testified in former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic’s case in 2002, was found dead in his cell yesterday afternoon in the UN Detention Unit in Scheveningen, the Netherlands, where he was preparing to testify in the trial of another Serb leader, Milan Martic, a UN spokesperson said today.In June 2004, three justices of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), sitting in The Hague, sentenced Mr. Babic to even more time than the 11 years prosecutors requested following a plea bargain because of what they called the gravity of the crimes that had occurred in the Krajina region of Croatia from 1991 to 1992.As part of a the bargain, Mr. Babic, then 48, had pleaded guilty to being a co-perpetrator in a joint criminal enterprise to forcibly and permanently remove Croats and other non-Serbs during his stint as president of the self-declared Republic of Serbian Krajina (RSK).Presiding Judge Alphons Orie of the Netherlands said Mr. Babic participated in a campaign of persecution that “involved the murder of more than 200 civilians, including women and elderly persons, the confinement and imprisonment of several hundred civilians in inhumane conditions, the forcible transfer or deportation of thousands of civilians, and the destruction of homes and public or private property.”He added: “The crime, which was characterized by ruthlessness and savagery and was committed with the intent to discriminate against non-Serb civilians, strongly impacted on victims and their relatives. Their suffering is still significant.”The Tribunal President, Judge Fausto Pocar, has ordered an internal inquiry into Mr. Babic’s death. read more

In Iraq UN envoy urges expansion of development programmes in Basra region

“This has been a very fruitful visit,” the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, Martin Kobler, said in a news release, adding that he had had “excellent discussions” with the Governor of Basra, Dr. Khalaf Abdul-Samad, over the UN’s ongoing role in the development of the province. According to a news release from the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) – which Mr. Kobler also heads – the UN envoy also visited a UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) accelerated learning programme for juvenile detainees at Basra Central Prison, which aims to deliver education and training to young prisoners for their lives after release. In addition, Mr. Kobler reaffirmed the world body’s role in working for minority rights across the country following his visit to a local non-governmental organization that works for the rights of black Iraqis. “UNAMI will continue to advocate for the political participation and right to development for Iraqis from all backgrounds,” he stated. read more

HSE rehired three staff the day after they retired

first_imgTHE HEALTH SERVICE Executive rehired three of its former staff last year – just one day after they retired.Records obtained by the Medical Independent newspaper show that of 120 former HSE staff who were rehired by the agency last year, seven had already availed either of early retirement or voluntary redundancy schemes.In three cases – including a senior area medical officer and a nurse – the employee returned to work the day after leaving. The nurse in question still works for the HSE.The health service has seen several rounds of voluntary redundancies, as authorities try to lower employee numbers in an attempt to cut the annual pay bill which this year stands at €6.25 billion.The HSE also saw significant numbers leave work in the first quarter of last year, when an incentivised public service pension scheme lapsed. Employees who retired before last February 29 had their pension entitlements calculated based on their peak salaries and not their final, post-cut levels.Of the 120 former staff rehired by the HSE last year, 81 still work there – despite having received either pension lump sums or severance pay when they first left.Pay rules in the public sector mean, however, that any employee’s combined pay and pension cannot be larger than the pay grade they would have been entitled to before their retirement.In full: Read more at the Medical Independent >last_img read more

John Carmack coded Quake on a 28inch 169 1080p monitor in 1995

first_imgThe image you see above is a classic shot of John Carmack hard at work programming some integral part of the now legendary game Quake.Most people look at the picture and just see a very focused, famous coder. But look more closely and you realize that display he’s staring at is absolutely huge. Then you realize this is 1995 when LCD monitors are still in their infancy for desktop displays and any flat screen is both small and costs a small fortune.The display Carmack is working with is a very different beast, and by beast we mean this display was absolutely huge. It’s a Silicon Graphics/Integraph InterView 28hd96 color monitor. It’s basically a 28-inch CRT that weighed a back-breaking 45kg (99.5lb). Its dimensions were 49.5 x 69.9 x 62cm and its typical power consumption was 180 watts!So this is just a TV being used as a monitor? No, the 28hd96 was a proper computer monitor that had a few qualities making it very desirable to Carmack. Top of the list was the fact it could handle 1920 x 1080 resolutions, meaning whatever Carmack had under the desk in terms of computing power was probably working flat out to serve such a high resolution image back in ’95.The actual display size was only 25.9 inches, and the brightness maxed out at 100cd/m2. But even so, this monitor would have been the envy of many a programmer (and gamer) back then. The screen real estate must have seemed very excessive to most computer users at the time.I wonder what Carmack uses now? Whatever it is, he could probably have several of them hooked up to a machine each running at 1920 x 1080 and still come nowhere near close to drawing 180 watts.Read more about the display at and thanks to Fabien Sanglard for highlighting it.last_img read more

RTÉ guts kids TV How can you stand before a country and

first_img Share572 Tweet Email1 Among other things, Wingnut is the man behind Séamus the puppy dog, frequently seen on RTÉ Junior, while Murray fronts Twigín and the new Pop Goes The Weekend.They say the news brought devastation to the children’s TV team when they were called to an unexpected meeting on Wednesday afternoon. This after months of hearing the odd rumour from colleagues in the canteen.“Sheila de Courcy, head of the department, read a statement and said in three weeks time, everything is going to stop,” Wingnut explains, adding that she was visibly upset doing so.People were really angry and were distraught that Young People’s were never part of the discussion about what could be possible. It was a cold, clean sweep and that’s what hurt people. Because they were making out like we’ve come to tell you personally, look we’ve come down from our offices to tell you.Murray adds that temporary contracts as short as three months always meant for some anxious times but that “you never thought the whole department would be gone.” RTÉ’S DECISION TO gut its children’s TV production came as a shock to many.It was a shock to many of the people who spend their days in Montrose, but also to those across the country whose connection to the national broadcaster is most tightly wrapped in their childhood.For some though, the shock was painfully familiar.Paula Lambert, the voice of Bosco and the daughter of Wanderly Wagon’s Eugene Lambert, says the decision is the latest in a long history of occasions where RTÉ has chosen to cut children’s TV as a kind of easy option.“It brought back incredibly bad memories for me,” she explains.“I remember Wanderly Wagon was axed and how it was done and how hurt my dad was back in the day. It happened with me with Bosco and it just brought back all these memories of how badly people are treated by RTÉ.”RTÉ and its spokespeople have stressed that the station is operating in a “challenging financial environment” and that efficiencies must be found.The broadcaster has promised that its overall spend will not being diminished, just moved entirely to independent producers. But even if this pledge is kept, commissioning and production timeframes have led to fears that it could be 2018 before this actually happens. The late Irish puppeteer Eugene Lambert and ‘Judge’. (File, 2007)While most people accept that times are tight, Lambert’s problem is that the axe has fallen hardest in the children’s TV department, where she says it frequently has before:The first thing to be cut was children’s programmes. I remember the Bosco programmes we were going to do were slashed. Always in economic disasters, political disasters in the 1980s with all the elections, children’s programmes were axed to cover all the elections. Always when there was an economic, political or any reason, the first thing that got chopped was children’s programmes.“I feel very, very sorry for the young enthusiastic people who are working in the children’s department today. I know that they give it their all with very little facilities.”The young enthusiastic people Lambert is referring to don’t disagree. Puppeteer Ray Wingnut and presenter Clara Murray are two of the people most directly affected by this week’s announcement. Source: RTÉjr/Twitter The quality of children’s programming and animation from independent producers is not being doubted by anyone. This country genuinely has some of the best people in the world working in that space.What is perhaps being questioned is whether losing RTÉ’s hand in kids’ TV will also mean losing the loyalty to heritage and the commitment to provincial balance.RTÉ’s delivery of its all-Ireland remit is frequently shown most clearly in the children from all parts of the country who appear on air. It’s a two-way street as well, with these children as excited as anyone to come to the centre of Irish broadcasting in Dublin 4.Murray has seen it first hand.“We have a diverse audience, we have children from all over the country, all parts of Dublin that I’m afraid won’t be represented.”I had kids in a few weeks ago just to record a little sting and they were absolutely thrilled. You’d want to see the reaction from some of the kids. That’s rooted in their parents as well.Commercial realitiesOn a wider level, the developments have also led to concerns that commercial decisions are increasingly outweighing other considerations at the station.RTÉ’s official statement the other evening made it clear that this was about “operating costs” and “statutory committed spend”.  At no point did it say that the decision could deliver better programming.“I think there’s been a gradual commercialisation of RTÉ,” says Colum Kenny, a former DCU journalism professor and member of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.He argues that this issue stems from a “blurring of the lines” in terms of RTÉ’s “funding, output, presenters and indeed their mode of payment”.“I think it’s a station we need a conversation about. I think that it needs to determine where it’s at itself. We’re at a point now where at times the station sounds lost and I think we want to make sure that we have strong public service media going into the future.”As Paula Lambert puts it:The children of Ireland who watched television are now the adults that are supporting RTÉ and I think the next generation really need to be treated in the same way.Read: ‘Financial difficulties’ at RTÉ forced children’s television cutbacks – but Fair City is safe >Read: RTÉ staff say decision to cut children’s programme making was ‘bolt from the blue’ > EndedRTÉ has said that eight staff are remaining within the young people’s department, 11 staff are to be reassigned within RTÉ and 15 independent contractors will see their contracts ended.The initial plan was that these contracts would finish in December but this been made somewhat unclear following a meeting between management and the RTÉ Trade Union Group (TUG) yesterday.After that meeting, RTÉ accepted that there had been insufficient consultation before Wednesday’s announcement and that further talks would therefore have to take place.RTÉ has placed the deadline for these discussions on 31 January 2017.Unions have echoed that deadline and also pledged to ensure that “the public service ethos of the station is safeguarded”. President Mary Robinson visits Ray, Zig and Zag and Dustin on The Den in 1990. Source: Twitter/RTÉ ArchivesThis point is one that has been repeated frequently in the past 72 hours. The question of how fundamental children’s TV is to public service broadcasting.Wingnut says angry questions like this were put to the RTÉ top brass at Wednesday’s meeting:Questions like, ‘how can you stand in front of a country and be like, give us your licence fee yet we’re not going to cater for 30% of the population that is under 18 and is a population that doesn’t have a voice?’He points to examples like Swipe TV, an in-house RTÉ production that caters for children aged between 8-12 and has an accompanying smartphone app that’s been downloaded 20,000 times. It is a trusted outlet that parents can give their children when they want them to explore the digital space.“I think of things like Sesame Street, which is public service broadcasting. You know that it’s safe and you know that it’s a touchstone and I think that RTÉ as a public service broadcaster needs to maintain that idea of it being a centre of excellence.” @WWinters_Nobody asked anybody that’s the big problem I don’t even think @RTE even thought it through #Savekidstv— Bosco OFFICIAL (@boscosbox) November 25, 2016 By Rónán Duffy Santa pays Bosco and co. a visit in 1983. Image: Twitter/RTÉ Archives Image: Twitter/RTÉ Archives 20,801 Views Did your little ones catch our NEW show Pop Goes The Weekend earlier on RTÉjr? It’s on again in 5 minutes! Hope they enjoy it!— RTÉjr (@RTEjr) November 19, 2016 Short URL Source: Bosco OFFICIAL/Twitter Saturday 26 Nov 2016, 7:00 AM Nov 26th 2016, 7:00 AM RTÉ guts kids TV: ‘How can you stand before a country and be like, give us your licence fee?’ RTÉ has decided to completely outsource the production of young people’s television. 79 Comments Santa pays Bosco and co. a visit in 1983. 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WWE attendance 924929 live events and TV tapings

first_img Roman Reigns is in Remission WWE Live returns to China this September, Will hold tryouts this July in Shanghai Google+ Videos Articles Seth Rollins WhatsApp ROH announces Death Before Dishonor PPV and TV tapings for Las Vegas this September Pinterest Now Playing Up Next Seth Rollins Defends WWE On Two Separate Occasions Cesaro Videos Articles Now Playing Up Next Videos Articlescenter_img Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Kurt Angle Ronda Rousey Highlighting WWEs Problems Twitter Jason Namako RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR WWE attendance figures from September 24 to September 29, 2015.* 9/24 NXT live event in Lakeland, Florida: 400 fans.* 9/25 live event in Toronto, Ontario, Canada: 7,200 fans.* 9/25 NXT live event in Largo, Florida: 500 fans (sellout).* 9/26 live event in Cleveland, Ohio: 4,700 fans.* 9/26 live event in Rochester, New York: 3,000 fans.* 9/26 NXT live event in Fort Pierce, Florida: 400 fans (sellout).* 9/27 live event in Syracuse, New York: 3,700 fans.* 9/27 live event in Erie, Pennsylvania: 2,500 fans.* 9/28 RAW TV tapings in Buffalo, New York: 8,500 fans.* 9/29 Smackdown TV tapings in Albany, New York: 4,000 fans.Source: The Wrestling Observer NewsletterRecommended videosPowered by AnyClipSeth Rollins Defends WWE On Two Separate OccasionsVideo Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmuteDuration 0:30/Current Time 0:04Loaded: 100.00%0:04Remaining Time -0:26 FullscreenUp NextThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Replay the list Facebook Now Playing Up Next Joan Jett Set To Perform Ronda Rouseys Entrance At WrestleMania 35 Ronda Rousey On WWE: I Love This Job, But I Dont Need It WWE Live returns to Australia this October, Tickets will be available May 28last_img read more

613 WWE RAW averages 297 million viewers on Monday night WWE wins

first_img Now Playing Up Next Twitter Seth Rollins Defends WWE On Two Separate Occasions Pinterest Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Google+ Ronda Rousey On WWE: I Love This Job, But I Dont Need It Wrestleview Weekly: Predictions for tonight’s Clash of Champions event in Charlotte Bully Ray Calls Out Ring Of Honor Fan On Twitter WhatsApp Now Playing Up Nextcenter_img WWE RAW Preview: King of the Ring Final Match, Fallout from WWE Clash of Champions Velvet Sky Joan Jett Set To Perform Ronda Rouseys Entrance At WrestleMania 35 Adam Martin RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Facebook Videos Articles Now Playing Up Next Ronda Rousey Highlighting WWEs Problems Last night’s 6/13 WWE RAW drew an average audience of 2.97 million viewers on Monday night on the USA Network according to is down from last week’s show that drew 3.25 million viewers. Despite the drop in viewers, RAW held the No. 1, No. 2 and No. 4 spots on cable on Monday night. The show again saw the third hour dip below three million viewers overall.Hourly breakdowns were as follows.Hour 1: 3.043 million viewers (down from 3.371 million viewers last week)Hour 2: 3.109 million viewers (down from 3.490 million viewers)Hour 3: 2.758 million viewers (down from 2.903 million viewers)RAW averaged a 0.98 rating among adults 18-49 on Monday night, a big drop from last week’s 1.14 rating. The lower demographic rating was still able to keep RAW as the top rated show on cable last night.Recommended videosPowered by AnyClipBully Ray Calls Out Ring Of Honor Fan On TwitterVideo Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmuteDuration 0:30/Current Time 0:01Loaded: 100.00%0:01Remaining Time -0:29 FullscreenUp NextThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Replay the list WWE Draft confirmed to be taking place as a two-night event starting on October 11last_img read more

Halloween is time for fun at Pomeroy Clark County farm operations

first_imgHere come the Pumpkin People, with their huge orange heads, their jagged orange smiles, their weird orange souls.Here you go into the corn maze, with its dark and muddy mysteries, its confusing zigs and zags, its reversals and dead ends. Pay no attention to those cobwebby skulls and bones lying all over the ground.Bwa ha ha ha! (Thunder and lightning here.)OK, it’s not really so terrifying. It’s Halloween season in Clark County. Numerous agricultural operations are eager to welcome you to their fields full of pumpkins and corridors of corn.“Nothing scary or gory, just good, clean, fall fun,” said marketing coordinator Maura Todd of Pomeroy Living History Farm in Yacolt. That’s the planet of the Pumpkin People, who live on Pumpkin Lane. There are more than 100 of them, and you’ll see just how diverse and busy they are if you go take the hayride down their mile-long street.“They change every year,” Todd said. “We have a lot of the same characters … but we try to mix it up with the scenes.” In years past, those characters have included larger-than-life figures like superheroes, cartoon characters, movie stars and the couple from “American Gothic” — not to mention just-plain-pumpkin-people like farmers, ranchers, bakers, loggers, cowboys and cows. There’s even been a “country bumpkin” pumpkin who bangs on bongos by way of welcoming visitors down Pomeroy’s driveway.The Pumpkin Lane hayride isn’t just a tour of that street. It also stops at the pumpkin patch, where you can pick out your perfect pumpkin — for an extra fee, with prices starting at $1. But there’s no additional fee for all the other activities for children: hay bale maze, pumpkin flume game, other yard games, barn animals and fun photo opportunities.last_img read more

Vancouver bank robber strikes twice in 20 minutes

first_imgA robber who walked away empty-handed from a Vancouver bank Tuesday afternoon robbed a credit union in a different part of town about 20 minutes later, according to the Vancouver Police Department.The attempted robbery was reported at 4:38 p.m. at the US Bank branch at 16415 S.E. McGillivray Blvd., according to dispatch records. The robber made his attempt via the bank’s drive-thru window, but he did not get any money, police Sgt. Mike Davis said.The robber was described as a white man, 6 feet tall, wearing a black jacket and a black baseball cap.At 4:55 p.m., as officers were investigating the attempted robbery, an alarm came in for a robbery at the Columbia Credit Union branch at 108 Grand Blvd., about 8.5 miles away.The robber in that case passed a note demanding money and fled with an undetermined amount of money, according to police. The robber matched the description of the suspect in the earlier attempted robbery and is believed to be the same person, Davis said.No arrests were made, and the cases remain under investigation.last_img read more

Wildfires scorching homes land and Californias budget

first_imgUPPER LAKE, Calif. — Firefighters battling massive blazes throughout Northern California had some success keeping flames away from heavily populated areas Thursday and made progress containing a blaze that already destroyed more than 1,000 homes.One of the fires moved deeper into the Mendocino National Forest, “an area with some hunting cabins and some private property but no towns,” Lake County Sheriff Lt. Corey Paulich said.Still, just a month into the budget year, California has already spent more than one-quarter of its annual fire budget, at least $125 million, state Department of Forestry and Fire Protection spokesman Mike Mohler said.Following years of drought and a summer of record-breaking heat, immense tracts of forests, chaparral and grasslands have become tinder that allows even a small spark to explode into a devouring blaze, authorities said.“We’re being surprised. Every year is teaching the fire authorities new lessons,” Gov. Jerry Brown told reporters Wednesday. “We’re in uncharted territory.”last_img read more

Governor visits TCI National Museum

first_img#TCINationalMuseum #HEJohnFreemanPress Release: TCIG Islanders invited to donate for the preservation and showcase of TCI history; new National Museum design unveiled TCI Nat’l Museum is our Smithsonian Institute says Governor Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppTurks and Caicos, March 13, 2017 – Providenciales – His Excellency the Governor, Dr John Freeman, accompanied by Mrs Freeman, visited the National Museum respectively in Grand Turk and Providenciales on the occasion of its 25th anniversary in the week of 27 February.  Commenting on the visits, the Governor said:‘The National Museum is a TCI National Treasure.  Over the past twenty five years it has grown from a quiet private initiative into a national resource and repository.   It has gradually accumulated objects and papers of inestimable value to the collective sense of belonging in these Islands.   It now serves as a living expression of a collective memory; and without a collective memory there can be no sense of collective identity.   So the National Museum should be dear to the hearts of all those who live on these Islands.Visiting the Museum’s main site in Grand Turk in the company of the distinguished members of the museum’s Board (themselves reflective of its national vocation) I was struck deeply by the valuable holdings; not just of wonderful artifacts, but also of the tremendously evocative paper holdings, the records of births and deaths, the evidence of continuities in the Islands’ population, and all held in specially constructed air-conditioned archives.  The National Museum is not some quaint local initiative, but the equivalent, for example, of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC: what the latter is for the US, the National Museum can be for the Turks and Caicos Islands.I also visited the new outpost of the Museum in Providenciales.  Here it is possible by visiting the reconstructed dwelling on the site to get a real sense of how life in these Islands was lived not so many years ago.  The house and the associated museum building are both an educational focus for local school groups but also an increasing attraction for visitors from abroad.It is not an exaggeration to say that TCI lives in all its cultural and historical richness in the National Museum.    It behooves  all of us to ensure that it’s longer term future is assured.” Recommended for youcenter_img Related Items:#HEJohnFreeman, #TCINationalMuseum 180 Years of full Emancipation, TCI hosts event tonight at slave plantation Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

Chaddies become popular poll plank in Maharashtra

first_imgIn picture: NCP chief Sharad Pawar.Twitter/Sharad Pawar [Representational Image]As campaigning for the third phase of Lok Sabha elections ended, Maharashtra politicians plummeted to new lows when they virtually bared each other’s ‘chaddis’ while hitting out at opponents.The first soft tug at the secret garment was made by Nationalist Congress Party Chief Sharad Pawar at an election rally on Sunday in Madha.The normally composed Pawar, 78, suddenly seemed to have let his guard down when he hit out at a senior NCP leader and former Deputy Chief Minister Vijaysinh Mohite-Patil, whose son Ranjitsinh recently crossed over to the BJP. Last week, Mohite-Patil Sr. even attended a rally addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Solapur.”Now that you went there, I have nothing to say. But next time, don’t go there clad in half chaddies. Don’t compel us to see your thighs and legs… Exercise caution… What will people think?” Pawar said amidst huge cheers and catcalls at the rally.The obvious taunt was to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) whom opposition politicians usually refer to as ‘khaki chaddiwalas’ in private conversations.Hitting back at Pawar, a livid Mohite-Patil, 75, said at another meeting, jeeringly asking “why the ‘langoti-clad pehelwan’ of Baramati ran away from the election arena” if he was not scared of the ‘chaddiwalas’.As the controversy snowballed, the 48-year-old Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis also jumped into the haute-couture political discussion by helpfully pointing out that the so-called “half ‘chaddi’ had given way to (brown) trousers long back (2016).””Don’t forget… it was with the support of these very same ‘chaddiwalas’ you refer to, that you had become Chief Minister first time (1978),” Fadnavis lashed out.He warned that “it would be clear on May 23, when the election results are declared, whose ‘chaddi’ remains”.The full-fledged ‘chaddi-langoti’ political war erupted a week after Samajwadi Party leader in Uttar Pradesh, Azam Khan made similar unparliamentary remarks on his BJP opponent and former Bollywood actress Jaya Prada.Khan had created shockwaves with his comment: “In just 17 days, I had gauged that (her) underwear is of ‘khaki’ colour,” and has been booked for the same.Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) President Raj Thackeray went beyond ‘chaddis’ last week at a public meeting where he played a videotape on Modi announcing how 850,000 public toilets were built in a week in Bihar under the Swachhata Mission.”How much is he fibbing? As per our calculations, the figure comes to seven toilets built per five seconds… You don’t even ‘get it out’ so quickly, but toilets were constructed at such top speeds,” Thackeray commented, having the audiences in splits and his speech videos went viral all over.last_img read more

Jet Airways aims to raise 180 million via debt Report

first_imgJet Airways, India’s second largest airline as per market share, is currently in talks with lender banks to raise as much as $180 million in loans. The airline was planning to raise $150 million, but that amount could rise by $30 million owing to demand, Reuters reported.The Jet Airways stock was trading at Rs. 550.80 at around 9:20 a.m. on Friday, down 0.89 percent from its previous close on the Bombay Stock Exchange.The Mumbai-based carrier saw its market share go up to 16.1 percent in May from 15.9 percent during the month of April.Jet Airways, which is partly owned by Etihad Airways (based out of Abu Dhabi), reported its first annual profit in nine years for the quarter that ended in March 2016. The company made net profit of Rs. 397.16 against a net loss of Rs. 1,728.99 crore. During the first three months of the year, the total income from Jet Airways jumped 3.57 percent year-on-year to Rs. 5,245.28 crore when compared to Rs. 5,064.52 crore from a year ago, the Financial Express reported.Last month, Jet airways had announced special low fares for travellers to beat what is considered to be a lean season in aviation business. The carrier has announced 20 percent discount on business and economy class on base fares on its domestic network for a limited time period.The limited period discount offer was applicable on tickets booked between June 2 to 6 for travel between June 25 and September 30.[1 lakh = 100,000 | 1 crore = 10 million | 100 crore = 1 billion]last_img read more

Rise of the Tomb Raider already available to preorder on PS4

first_imgLast month Microsoft and Crystal Dynamics managed to upset gamers by announcing that Rise of the Tomb Raider $14.99 at Best Buy would be an Xbox exclusive. Initially the language suggested the game would never be released for any rival platforms, but that stance soon softened to confirm it was a timed exclusive. Not content with upsetting gamers once, both parties continue to refuse to state how long the exclusive period lasts for.The way in which this exclusivity deal was handled is ridiculous. What should have been a positive for Microsoft and the Xbox One in particular is now a sore point. And to demonstrate just how much of a joke this situation and deal has turned out to be, a pre-order for the PS4 version of the game has now appeared before the Xbox One and Xbox 360 versions have released.UK retailer GAME has listed Rise of the Tomb Raider for PS4 on its website with a release date of “TBC 2014.” The placeholder box art amusingly has the “Only On PlayStation” tag on the cover. It’s thought that Microsoft had secured the game for the holidays this year, but it could still turn out to just be a month or so.I suspect that Microsoft will be calling any retailer that lists the game for pre-order on Sony systems and requesting (demanding?) they take the page down. There’s gamers out there who want this game on a next-gen console, but decided to buy a PS4. Microsoft wants to tempt them to buy an Xbox One with this exclusive, and a PS4 pre-order will diminish the already slim chances of that happening.Hopefully Microsoft has learned from this fiasco and will handle exclusives differently and better in future. But saying that, if you want a console to get more sales then timed exclusives are not the answer. New gaming IP should be top of the list, as should pricing.last_img read more

Physics duo describe a way to guarantee true randomness

first_imgIllustration of the bipartite set-up. Image (c) Nature Physics (2012) doi:10.1038/nphys2300 Journal information: Nature Physics Roger Colbeck and Renato Renner, as they describe in their paper published in Nature Physics, have figured out a way to virtually guarantee randomness in a constant stream of information. They say their technique can also transform a stream of not quite random data, to one that is truly random.Their work is based on experiments done with quantum entanglement, whereby two particles appear to coexist in separate places. What happens to one, happens to the other at exactly the same time. Scientists don’t yet know how it happens, but they are now able to make it happen whenever they want. In looking at studies of quantum entanglement, Colbeck and Renner noted that physicists involved in the study tended to assume that the measurements used to study the phenomenon were originally random.Because of this, the two calculated what would likely happen if a stream of data that was only partially random was correlated with other variables, thus ensuring that bits of information would not be random. If those bits of information were used to choose measurements on paired particles that were entangled that were caused to go down different paths the outcome would have to be independent of the other variables, which would mean true randomness had been achieved.The two say that this process could be applied to real world data to create true random data streams that could be used in virtually any application that requires the use of truly random numbers. Researchers roll Einstein’s dice: Developing a quantum random number generator © 2012 Phys.Org Explore furthercenter_img More information: Free randomness can be amplified, Nature Physics (2012) doi:10.1038/nphys2300AbstractAre there fundamentally random processes in nature? Theoretical predictions, confirmed experimentally, such as the violation of Bell inequalities, point to an affirmative answer. However, these results are based on the assumption that measurement settings can be chosen freely at random, so assume the existence of perfectly free random processes from the outset. Here we consider a scenario in which this assumption is weakened and show that partially free random bits can be amplified to make arbitrarily free ones. More precisely, given a source of random bits whose correlation with other variables is below a certain threshold, we propose a procedure for generating fresh random bits that are virtually uncorrelated with all other variables. We also conjecture that such procedures exist for any non-trivial threshold. Our result is based solely on the no-signalling principle, which is necessary for the existence of free randomness.via ScienceNews ( — In the natural world, it seems randomness is all around. Walk through a forest for example and it appears completely random, despite the fact that natural patterns emerge at almost every turn. In the human world, randomness is valued by all manner of people in a variety of circumstances, from testers of systems to ensure that weaknesses show up before products are sold to the public, to cryptologists, to those that run casinos where randomness ensures the house will win far more often than not. Unfortunately, guaranteeing true randomness is not something that comes easy. Take the lowly coin toss for example. A slight difference in weight on the “heads” side may cause the “tales” side to turn up a hundredth of a percentage point more often. Because of this, new work by a pair of physicists is catching the attention of people across a wide swath of interests. Citation: Physics duo describe a way to guarantee true randomness (2012, May 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from 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.last_img read more

DEO to continue probe of chit fund scams in coordination with Talukdar

first_imgKolkata: With proper coordination with Justice (Retired) SP Talukdar committee, the Directorate of Economic Offence (DEO) will continue with its probe into the alleged illegal collection of money through various chit fund schemes by different groups, including three companies of the Alchemist Group.Justice Talukdar committee, that was set up by the Calcutta High Court, will start distributing cheques among the people, who had invested in the companies under Alchemist Group, from July 2 onwards. The DEO has also urged the investors to submit their details with them to prepare a list and the agency will be sharing the same with the Talukdar committee. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsIn a bid to prepare the list of investors in the companies of Alchemist Group, the agency has also given advertisements in dailies, seeking their detailed information. At the same time, the probe into the allegations against the companies will continue “as there is no legal bar in continuing with the investigation”. The committee will keep informing about the development of its probe periodically.Similarly, the agency will also continue to probe the cases related to Hahnemann Herbal Limited, MSD Group, Swarnabhoomi Group and ESBI group, which are also being looked into by the committee. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedIt may be mentioned that mainly three companies of the Alchemist Group – Alchemist Holding Limited, Alchemist Infra Realty Limited and Alchemist Township India Limited – had collected the money in the time period between 2005 and 2014. Sources said that there are around 20 directors of the three groups and they are suspected to be directly involved with the raising of money.The money was collected assuring a high rate of return. But the investors didn’t get back their money as assured and finally lodged complaints against the companies. It has been learnt that the agency has already gone through the relevant documents of all the three companies of Alchemist Group. Based on the findings after going through the documents, the investigating agency is further continuing with the probe.At present, DEO is probing into the cases of illegal collection of money by several companies under a total of 22 groups and there are around 199 other groups whose activities are also under the scanner of the agency at present. The agency would initiate a probe against the groups if their activities are found to be “illegal”.last_img read more

5 things you cant do with long nails

first_imgMany women who have worn long fake nails for extended periods of time have found it incredibly frustrating, as they cannot do what they normally can with ordinary nails. Some, on the other hand, can cope just fine with their long nails.Here are 5 of the most annoying things women tend to experience while having their ‘talons’ on:1- Putting in earrings: If your nails are long and your earrings are little, they’re going to fall into the sea that is the underside of your nail.2- Typing on a keyboard: You typically type with the tops of your fingertips close to your nail, but with long nails, you have to change your typing ways and use the pads of your fingers more.3- Putting on any type of make-up using your fingers: Kiss applying foundation with your fingertips goodbye, because you’ll most likely create all types of divots in your make-up when you try to apply it while wearing fake nails. WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite 4- Flossing: This is hard enough to do when the floss is so tightly wrapped around your finger that you feel like it’s going to fall off. Throw long nails into the mix and they’re poking your gums, keeping you from really getting in there and cleaning between your teeth.5- Opening a can of cool-drink:  You now have to use the side of your finger to try to jimmy it open to avoid breaking or bending your nail backwards.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!last_img read more