Researchers cause evolution of number sense in fruit flies

first_img Researchers induce freezing tolerance in fruit fly Citation: Researchers cause evolution of number sense in fruit flies (2012, July 11) retrieved 18 August 2019 from via Nature blog 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. fruit fly ( — For most of history, people have thought that human beings were the only organism capable of understanding numerical relationships or to use those relationships as a form of information, other than to discern the obvious; a pack of wolves is far more dangerous than one going it alone, for example. More recently however, researchers have discovered that many other animals have the ability to determine differing numbers of thing, and some with bigger brains have even demonstrated an ability to count. But thus far, no one has tried to cause numerical understanding to come about in an organism that doesn’t appear to have one naturally. Till now that is. A group of researchers from the US and Canada have been working with fruit flies and appear to have caused them, through repeated exposure to negative stimuli, to evolve a means for discerning the difference between the numbers of light flashes they are exposed to.center_img © 2012 Explore further The researchers recently presented their study and results to the First Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology, and said in part that through their efforts they had caused an evolutionary change to come about in a species of fly that allowed them to associate the number of flashing lights with being shaken.To cause the evolutionary change to come about the researchers subjected a group of fruit flies to what they called twenty minute training sessions. Each was exposed to a certain number of flashes of light, some of which coincided with a vigorous shaking doled out by means of an electric toothbrush (something they don’t like apparently). The team discovered that no matter how many training sessions a fruit fly received it was never able to associate the number of light flashes with the shaking. But by breeding the fruit flies and training their offspring as well, they found that after forty generations, the fruit flies developed an ability to discern the difference and to react accordingly. In short, they’d evolved an ability to determine the difference in the number of occurrences of something in their environment and to respond to it in ways that made sense to them.The next step will be to study the insects to see what changes came about in their DNA as a result of their training, which might be of use in trying to figure out why some people with a condition known as dyscalculia aren’t able to understand counting or simple math. More information:last_img read more

StratoBus airship prototype targeted within next five years w video

first_img Citation: StratoBus airship prototype targeted within next five years (w/ video) (2014, March 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further The StratoBus project is led by Thales Alenia Space, which is focused on space telecommunications and navigation. “We design, integrate, test and operate high-performance satellite technologies in both civil and defense sectors,” according to the company notes. Airbus Defence & Space, Zodiac Marine and CEA-Liten are partners. The project is part of the creation of an airship company by the Pégase competitiveness cluster in southern France. The Pégase cluster is a network of major players in the aeronautics and space industry of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region, pooling those involved with UAVs, balloons and stratospheric aircrafts for specific missions. (The Cote d’Azur is a crossroads in Europe for aerospace research, where there is a network of subcontractors and specialist companies working closely with research laboratories.)StratoBus will be operating at an altitude of about 20 kilometers, the lower reaches of the stratosphere but above air traffic and jet streams. The airship measures 70 to 100 meters long and 20 to 30 meters in diameter. The company said its design carries “technological innovations,” in particular to make sure it captures the sun’s rays in all seasons; a power generation system coupling solar panels to a solar power amplification system; and a light reversible fuel cell for energy storage. More information: … © 2014 Credit: Thalescenter_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Flawless launch of Alphasat, Europe’s largest and most sophisticated telecom satellite The company said the StratoBus platform will require continuous, significant energy input to offset the wind. Two electric motors will automatically adjust their output power depending on wind speed, up to 90 km/h. ( —A project that presents a concept of something between drone and satellite is under way. The vehicle is called StratoBus, developed in Europe. The StratoBus will be able to carry out missions such as border and maritime surveillance, telecommunications, broadcasting and navigation. Potential applications include boosting GSM network capacity for public events and GPS augmentation over dense traffic areas. The shell fabric is made of braided carbon fiber. The StratoBus will be able to carry payloads up to 200 kg. The first prototype is planned for rollout within the next five years. StratoBus is described as an autonomous stationary platform and the company emphasized its two notable features, the ability to carry out long endurance observation and complete autonomy from a fixed position.last_img read more

A homebrew observatory detects exoplanet

first_img More information: IEEE Spectrum, … y-exoplanet-detector Credit: David Schneider © 2014 So go the events leading up to Schneider’s recent DIY video, which shows him successfully star-tracking with a telephoto lens and barndoor tracker—otherwise known as two pieces of plywood hinged together. Without the aid of a high powered telescope, then, “You yourself can detect an extrasolar planet, and I’m gonna show you how,” he tells viewers, showing a little telephoto lens. He holds up two pumpkins, one smaller than the other. “If you’re very lucky, the planet, as it orbits its star, will come directly in front of the star, as viewed from earth—in which case, the amount of light coming from that star diminishes, very briefly as the planet passes in front of it. But that signal could be big enough for you to detect with a DSLR camera. The lens that comes with your camera probably isn’t going to do it.” Instead, he said, you can inexpensively purchase a 300-millimeter Nikon telephoto lens, along with a Nikon-to-Canon adapter. For next steps, cost-conscious Schneider looked for DIY alternatives to an expensive tracker and went for two pieces of plywood, which he referred to as his barndoor tracker. To drive the tracker, he pulled gears out of a defunct inkjet printer, added an Arduino microprocessor, wooden platform and ball head to orient the camera in any direction. He said he used software that came with his camera, allowing adjustments to camera settings, taking shots, recording images directly to a computer and programming a sequence of timed exposures.Schneider’s goal? “A gas giant that belongs to a binary star system variously named HD 189733, HIP 98505, or V452 Vulpeculae, depending on the star catalog.” (His article in IEEE Spectrum noted that, 63 light-years away, HD 189733 is too dim to be seen with the naked eye. Finding it required the use of such waypoints as the Dumbbell Nebula.) He used Iris software to perform corrections needed to calculate the brightness of HD 189733 as well as four reference stars. “So,” he concluded “it seems my home-brew observatory did detect an exoplanet—using little more than run-of-the-mill DSLR and a $92 eBay camera lens.” David Schneider, a senior editor at IEEE Spectrum, was interested in exoplanets, planets that orbit stars other than the sun, but figured this kind of exercise as a home-based project was going to need expensive telescopes; he stumbled across a project at Ohio State University, where resourceful astronomers had figured out a way to spot exoplanets using a device with a lens designed for high-end cameras. Schneider’s wheels turned, thinking he might also be able to pull this off if he got his hands on a charge-coupled-device detector not research-grade, and maybe he could forget about an expensive telescope as well? He also discovered an online posting by an amateur astronomer saying he had detected a known exoplanet using a digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera with a telephoto lens. Perth’s planet hunter helps discover unusual exoplanet 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. Citation: A home-brew observatory detects exoplanet (2014, December 1) retrieved 18 August 2019 from read more

Tiny gears increase lighttowork conversion efficiency by five orders of magnitude w

first_imgIn the future, this efficient light-driven motion could be used in a variety of applications on different scales, from miniature solar vehicles to nanomachines.”Solar vehicles allow transport on land, water and in air using sunlight as a primary source of energy,” Maggi told “The conversion of light into movement generally requires some transformation stages between different forms of energy. Typically they are electric vehicles powered by photovoltaic cells that convert in a first stage sunlight into electrical energy. This indirect strategy, however, involves a high degree of complexity that puts big limitations on the miniaturization of solar engines on the micrometer scale.” “On the other hand, the generation of propulsion on small scales is of crucial importance for the operation of micro and nanomachines within the so-called lab-on-a chip,” said Roberto Di Leonardo at the Italian National Research Council, and the team coordinator. “Future research in this direction could lead to the development of micromachines that are capable of transporting tiny loads, such as individual cells, within miniaturized devices powered by the simple exposure to sunlight.” The researchers, Claudio Maggi and coauthors from the University of Rome, the Italian Institute of Technology in Genova, and the NANOTEC-CNR Institute of Nanotechnology in Rome, have published a paper on the new demonstration of light-to-work conversion in a recent issue of Nature Communications.In their study, the scientists fabricated the microgears using laser lithography, coated them with a layer of amorphous carbon to increase light absorption, and immersed them in a liquid. They then deposited a small drop of the gear-containing liquid onto a microscope glass slide and illuminated it with an LED. While previous light-driven motors generally require high-power laser beams to induce motion, here the wide-field LED could induce motion with just a few microwatts of power per gear, corresponding to a 100,000 times higher light-to-work conversion efficiency.The reason for the increase in efficiency is that the new system operates under an entirely different light-to-work conversion mechanism. Previously, similar systems have relied on either the radiation pressured exerted by highly focused laser beams, or on thermophoresis, which is the slow migration of solid particles induced by thermal gradients in the surrounding fluid. To achieve thermophoresis, half of the particle is covered in a heat-absorbing coating, so that when exposed to strong illumination, the particle will be propelled along a temperature gradient. More information: Claudio Maggi, et al. “Micromotors with asymmetric shape that efficiently convert light into work by thermocapillary effects.” Nature Communications. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms8855Lab webpage: (—Scientists have demonstrated that pinwheel-shaped microgears floating on a liquid surface can rotate at speeds of up to 300 r.p.m. when illuminated by an ordinary LED. This light-driven motion, which arises because the light creates a tiny temperature difference and, subsequently, a surface tension difference in the surrounding fluid, is about five orders of magnitude more efficient than other mechanisms that convert light into work. As the effect is not size-dependent, the scientists expect that the system could be scaled to both the macroscale and the nanoscale. Images of the microgears and experimental setup. Credit: Maggi, et al. ©2015 Nature Communications Micromotors with asymmetric shape that efficiently convert light into work by thermocapillary effects. Credit: Maggi, et al. ©2015 Nature Communications In the new system, the motors are entirely covered in a heat-absorbing coating, so that they are mostly uniformly heated. However, the inner vertices of each motor’s pinwheel shape become hotter than the outer ones, which generates an asymmetric temperature gradient in the surrounding fluid. Since surface tension usually decreases with temperature, this temperature gradient—even when as small as a few millikelvin—causes a surface tension gradient, meaning that capillary forces in the fluid pull at the microgears unevenly. The uneven pulling results in a net torque, causing the microgears to spin rapidly. Citation: Tiny gears increase light-to-work conversion efficiency by five orders of magnitude (w/ video) (2015, August 17) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore furthercenter_img Researchers manipulate gold-coated nanoparticles with lasers © 2015 Journal information: Nature Communications As the researchers explain, this effect is very similar to the Marangoni effect, which also involves a surface tension gradient. In the Marangoni effect, liquids and small objects placed on the surface of a fluid with a surface tension gradient will move from the region with the low surface tension toward the region with the higher surface tension. Although previous studies have used highly focused lasers to demonstrate Marangoni propulsion, this study marks the first time that it has been achieved with incoherent wide-field illumination, such as an ordinary LED. This microgear spins clockwise due to the temperature gradient between its inner and outer vertices, which causes capillary forces in the liquid to pull at the gear unevenly. Credit: Maggi, et al. ©2015 Nature Communications 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

Seismic data suggests slow slip events may presage larger earthquakes

first_img © 2016 More information: N. Uchida et al. Periodic slow slip triggers megathrust zone earthquakes in northeastern Japan, Science (2016). DOI: 10.1126/science.aad3108AbstractBoth aseismic and seismic slip accommodate relative motion across partially coupled plate-boundary faults. In northeastern Japan, aseismic slip occurs in the form of decelerating afterslip after large interplate earthquakes and as relatively steady slip on uncoupled areas of the subduction thrust. Here we report on a previously unrecognized quasi-periodic slow-slip behavior that is widespread in the megathrust zone. The repeat intervals of the slow slip range from 1 to 6 years and often coincide with or precede clusters of large [magnitude (M) ≥ 5] earthquakes, including the 2011 M 9 Tohoku-oki earthquake. These results suggest that inherently periodic slow-slip events result in periodic stress perturbations and modulate the occurrence time of larger earthquakes. The periodicity in the slow-slip rate has the potential to help refine time-dependent earthquake forecasts. Scientists the world over have for years been searching for a way to predict when an earthquake will strike, with enough certainty to warn people in the area. To date such efforts have come up empty, though much has been learned in the process. In this new effort, the researchers report that they believe they may have found a possible indicator of an impending quake, and it is based on what are known as slips, small underground movement similar to earthquakes, but which happen so slowly that they don’t cause damage or even register on seismic monitors—the only way to detect them is to use GPS equipment.To come to these conclusions, the researchers analyzed seismic data for Japan’s two largest islands, going back to 1984. Doing so led to the identification of 1,500 instances where there appeared to be a pattern of repetition—that allowed them to estimate the speed at which the tectonic plates below were moving. They then used statistics to correlate slippages with non-repeating measurable quakes with a magnitude of 5 or higher. Doing so revealed that there appeared to be a speedup in slippage just prior to major earthquakes. The team also looked at GPS data, which can actually be used to measure tectonic shifting, and report that it matched the rates they had calculated earlier.The team acknowledges that much more work needs to be done before it can be confirmed that GPS monitoring devices could one day offer an early warning system, but suggest their research shows that there is the potential for such an outcome. 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. Seismogram being recorded by a seismograph at the Weston Observatory in Massachusetts, USA. Credit: Wikipedia (—A team of researchers, two from Tohoku University in Japan and two from the University of California in the U.S., has found evidence that suggests that a speedup in small underground deformations may occur prior to larger earthquakes, possibly providing a means for sounding a warning. In their paper published in the journal Science, the team describes how they pored over seismic data that spanned 28 years and which included approximately 6,000 seismic events, and what they found as a result—they also suggest that their findings might one day lead to a true earthquake early warning system.center_img Study results suggest slower seismic waves due to quakes may signal weak spots in crust Journal information: Science Explore further Citation: Seismic data suggests slow slip events may presage larger earthquakes (2016, January 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from read more

Top award winning authors to make their way to Jaipur litfest William

first_imgA Star-Studded lineup of international writers, including Commonwealth Prize winner Aminatta Forna from Sierra Leone, Booker Prize winner Howard Jacobson and Orange Prize winners Linda Grant and Madeline Miller, will lend glamour to the DSC Jaipur Literature Festival scehduled for 24-28 February.Commenting on the international line-up, the festival co-director and historical novelist William Dalrymple said on Friday: ‘It is going to be an absolutely extraordinary five days and I only wish it were possible to clone oneself so that one could attend five sessions simultaneously.’ Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Dalrymple said the ‘non-fiction list was especially strong this year’.‘We have no less than three winners of the Samuel Johnson Prize for non-fiction – Frank Dikkoter on Mao, Wade Davis on Everest and Orlando Figes on Stalin’s purges _ while Pulitzer winner Andrew Solomon will speak on his remarkable new book, Far From the Tree, he added.In a communique, the organisers said the festival will also introduce Indian audiences and readers to noted British historical novelist Lawrence Norfolk and three of Britain’s most popular literary writers – Sebastian Faulks, Deborah Moggach and Zoe Heller – whose award-winning books have been adapted into the highly acclaimed movies Birdsong, Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe Exotic Marigold Hotel and Notes on a Scandal.The festival will also host Abraham Verghese – one of the leading writers of Indian origin in the US and two of the ‘most respected novelists in the Arab world, Ahdaf Soueif and Tahar Ben Jalloun’.It will also bring back South Asian sensations Nadeem Aslam and Mohammad Hanif and will introduce Jamil Ahmad, along with Ariel Dorfman, a playwright and author from Chile.‘From Harvard, we have Diana Eck, whose book India: A Sacred Geography has been one of the hits of the past year, philosopher Michael Sandel, who will bring his popular BBC Radio 4 series The Public Philosopher, to Jaipur and leading cultural theorist Homi Bhabha’.Beside the international stars, the festival will host literature in 17 Indian languages as well.last_img read more

Lupita Nyongo to make theatre debut

first_imgNyong’o, 32, will make her New York stage debut in the production, which is also the play’s NYC premiere.Eclipsed is set during the Liberian Civil War and follows the captive wives of a rebel officer. “Danai Gurira has written a brilliant play, ripped from the headlines, that looks at the terrible conflicts in post-colonial Africa with an eye that is both incisive and deeply compassionate,” Public Theater artistic director Oskar Eustis said in a statement.“A feminist reading of the Liberian Civil War, a war that was ended by women, Eclipsed is both heart-breaking and profoundly life-affirming.  We are delighted to welcome Lupita Nyong’o to The Public in this vitally important play,” the statement added.last_img read more

Soon North 24Pgs to involve schools in road safety campaign

first_imgKolkata: In a unique move the North 24-Parganas district administration has taken up an initiative to involve various schools in the road safety awareness campaign started by the state government.The state Transport department is all set to start classes on road safety issues in the schools, so that both state government-aided and private schools work together with the district administration towards effective monitoring and implementation of the ‘Safe Drive, Save life’ campaign, a brain child of the Chief Minister. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeAccording to a senior Transport department official in the district, classes would be introduced in the schools whereby the students would be imparted basic knowledge on road safety issues. As per the official, the work education teachers of these schools would be asked to conduct the classes for the benefit of school students. The school authorities would also be asked to follow certain guidelines regarding the road safety measures, failing which strict action will be taken against the school authorities, the official said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedA high level committee has been formed comprising various senior officials of the districts, who will monitor all aspects related to the campaign from time to time. It will visit schools in all the five sub-divisions to take stock of the overall campaign.It will also submit reports to the district magistrate of North 24-Parganas, about the implementation of road safety awareness classes in these schools.According to the instructions, various schools that are situated on the state highways or national highways, should have a demarcated place exclusively for boarding and de-boarding the school students to and from the buses or pool cars. It may be mentioned here that the district administration has already been successfully implementing the ‘Safe Drive, Save Life’ campaign of the Chief Minister. Gigantic electronic displays have been installed in all the important places across the district, making people aware about road safety guidelines.Pictorial illustrations are being put on display so that issues draw the attention of people passing through the important intersections. The district administration claimed that due to rigorous campaign on road-safety related issues, the number of accidents has gone down in the state.According to the Transport department official, utmost importance is being laid on awareness classes which will be conducted in all the schools shortly, so that students are taught what to do or what not to do while travelling in pool cars or school buses.”We would take steps against the school authorities if they are found to have flouted any of the guidelines issued by the district administration,” a senior government official in the district said.last_img read more

Indulging in mango mania

first_imgPaatra, at Jaypee Siddharth Hotel is providing you the chance to savour this summer fruit at it’s best forms, every Wednesday afternoon throughout the month of June.Mango not only tastes good but is beneficial for your body as well. Mangoes keep your cholesterol in check, cleanses your skin and are good for your eyes. On contrary to the popular belief, mangoes help in weight loss and reduce the chances of diabetes. This juicy and yummy fruit may also help you to prevent a heat stroke during the summer. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Keeping the benefits of mangoes in view, Paatra, a well known eatery, is all set to please the taste buds by introducing Mango Kitty, a specially curated menu for all the fancy ladies out there to enjoy and relish the summer fruit. Now you can make your Wednesday exciting by spending it with your girls, treating yourselves with the tangy and tasty delicacies on the menu. Mouth watering dishes like Ambi Fish Tikka, Kache Aam Ki Laungi and Dal Arhar Kache Aam top the list.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixA perfect meal is incomplete without a dessert, and Paatra definitely has something special to offer to ladies with a sweet tooth. Mango based desserts, like the mango burfi is a hot favourite at the time. You can also indulge yourself in fun activities like dart games with a chance to win exclusively designed gifts and offers.Paatra is a speciality restaurant with a separate vegetarian kitchen, which showcases cuisine from Lahore to Amritsar to Indian. A fine selection of popular vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes from across the country is complemented by live music in the evenings. You may visit this mango festival in the afternoon every Wednesday and enjoy the delicacies at Rs 1500 per person.last_img read more

Pollution board teams to check cracker norm violation in city

first_imgKolkata: The West Bengal Pollution Control Board (WBPCB) has decided to deploy seven teams in the city and its surrounding areas on the occasion of Kali Puja and Diwali to check adherence to the 90-decibel limit and the recent Supreme Court order on bursting firecrackers. The Supreme Court last month stipulated a two-hour window, from 8pm to 10pm, for bursting low-emission crackers. The 90-decibel norm has been in force in the state since late 90s in accordance with Calcutta High Court. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life There will be seven teams of pollution board officials in Kolkata and its nearby areas, while personnel would also be deployed in the districts to check violation of rules, WBPCB Chairman Kalyan Rudra told PTI here. The teams will act in coordination with the police and the administration, and particularly keep vigil near high-rises and areas adjacent to Kali Puja pandals, he said. “The board has given 180 sound-monitoring devices to the police, which was in addition to 317 more devices given last year. These devices can be effectively put to use to check the decibel level on spot,” Rudra noted. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed The WBPCB control room will be working from 5 pm to 12 am on both the days, he said. “We had held a series of meetings with residents of high-rises in the past week, where we pointed out that the measures, as stipulated in the SC order, were for public benefit. If you burst a toxic cracker, you are endangering your health, as well as that of your family members,” the WBPCB chairman explained. Rudra also said that reports from 17 air quality monitoring stations in Kolkata were being separately tabulated to check any change of air quality in the run-up to the festival and afterwards. “The board has been assessing air quality in the city for the past seven days and the practice will continue till November 14 to detect any change in air quality in the run-up to the festival, during the peak festival hours and also afterwards,” he said, adding that the findings from the last few days would be analysed shortly.last_img read more

Girl commits suicide after being rebuked

first_imgKolkata: In a tragic incident, a Class VIII student from Canning in South 24-Parganas committed suicide by consuming poison after she was rebuked by her family members.The victim girl has been identified as Masuda Khatun, a student of a local school. Locals told police the victim might have been rebuked by her parents for she had failed in an examination. It was also learnt that after being rebuked by her family members, the victim locked herself inside her room and consumed poison. She was a resident of Taldi village of Canning. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe incident occurred on Tuesday night. Despite knocking on her door repeatedly on Wednesday morning, the family members did not yield a response. They later broke open the door and found her lying on the bed. She was immediately rushed to a nearby hospital where the doctors declared her brought dead. The incident sparked tension among villagers of the locality. Police later reached the spot and started a probe to ascertain the exact reason behind her committing suicide. Police also came to know that the victim used to be busy on her mobile most of the time when at home. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedPolice are investigating if there is any other angle into the incident. They are investigating if she had committed suicide after being jilted in a love affair or there was any foul play behind her death.The investigating officers are also probing to know if anybody had instigated her to commit suicide. The body has been sent for autopsy. The police are also interrogating the family members of the victim in this connection.last_img read more

Two incidents of fire reported in city none hurt

first_imgKolkata: A fire broke out at a mixture factory located in the New Market area on Tuesday night. Similarly, another fire broke out at a leather goods manufacturing unit in Topsia on Wednesday night. No casualty has been reported in any ofthe incidents. On Tuesday night around 10:45 pm, locals noticed smoke coming out of the mixture factory near New market on Nilmoni Halder Lane. Within a while, the fire started spreading. Locals started the operation to douse the flames. Police and fire brigade were informed. Also Read – 3 injured, flight, train services hit as rains lash BengalAround five fire tenders were pressed into action. As the factory was stashed with inflammable materials, the fire spread within no time. Though fire fighters started dousing the flames on a war footing, they faced problems because of the lane being very narrow. Fire was controlled around 1:15 am. Later, the cooling process went on for almost an hour. According to sources, the fire fighters had alleged that there was no fire fighting mechanism in place at the factory despite having inflammable materials. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedFire minister Sujit Bose visited the spot at night and supervised the work. It is suspected that the fire occurred due to a short-circuit. In the other incident, a fire started on the second floor of a high-rise building in Topsia on Wednesday around 8:35 pm. Sources informed that locals noticed smoke billowing out of the third floor. Later, it was identified that the fire had occurred at a leather manufacturing unit there. As the materials stored inside the factory were highly inflammable, locals feared that the fire might spread to other areas as well. On receiving information, seven fire tenders were pressed into action. The fire was controlled almost after two hours. The cause of fire could not be ascertained. No one was injured due to the incident.last_img read more

Body of missing man found in Salt lake

first_imgKolkata: The body of a missing rickshaw-puller was found from roadside swamp at Polenite in Salt Lake Sector V on Monday afternoon.Some local residents saw the body on the bank of the swamp and informed the Electronics Complex police station. According to sources, the person identified as Uttam Ghosh (37), a resident of Barokopat area in Polenite was missing since Friday. His father Biswanath lodged a missing complaint at the police station on Saturday. During investigation sleuths could not find any clues to trace Uttam’s location. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseOn Monday, some residents sense a foul smell and tried to find its source. When they went to the swamp they saw Uttam’s body but could not recognise as the bode was in a decomposed state. Later Biswanath identified the body at the Bidhannagar Sub-Divisional Hospital. Police said that Uttam was a habitual drinker. Sources informed earlier in several occasions he was found lying on the road in heavily drunk condition. Though police are probing the case from all possible angles but during preliminary investigation no foul play could be noticed. No injury marks were visible when the body was recovered. Sleuths are waiting for the autopsy report to ascertain the cause of death.last_img read more

My stories belong as much to my readers as they belong to

first_imgUp above the hills, where a forest of nodding flowers and an endless valley of Himalayan mountains paint the sky, lives one of India’s most-loved writers – Ruskin Bond. He’s lived in this humble Ivy Cottage since 1981 and has penned numerous tales to traverse a 68-year-long journey exclusively spent in writing. And even as he turns 84, he shows no signs of slowing down. “In fact, I think I am writing more now,” he revealed in an interview at his residence ahead of his 84th birthday. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfBond’s vivid tales from the Ivy Cottage, and his descriptions of the view from the window at the foot of his bed, can often be deceiving for what one imagines to be some sort of a mansion of a celebrated writer is actually a humble first-floor flat of “an ordinary man”.”I’ve never cared for riches; what will I do with them?” he asks. And yet, when Rusty, as his readers lovingly call him, looks back at his writerly life, memories of several consecutive years when his love for writing plunged him into financial depths come flashing by. There were very few resources and opportunities for writers when he set out with his literary career. Multinational publishers were yet to find a footing in India and so, as his longtime friend and publisher David Davidar puts it, “our would be man of letters set sail for England”. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveIn England, he found a home for “The Room on the Roof,” his very first novel that won him the prestigious John Llewellyn Rhys Prize in 1957 at the mere age of 23. But contrary to the prevailing notion, Bond contended, that his time in England was not very fruitful.” ‘The Room on the Roof’ was what I carried with myself from India. I wrote very less there; or even in Delhi, there was no writing at all,” he said. And thus from the royalty advance that he was paid for his first novel, he sailed back to India. Stopping by in Karachi, he went looking for the names and contacts of editors whom he could “bombard” with his stories and articles. The then young man wanted to make a living by freelancing his writings. The Illustrated Weekly of India and The Statesman were the main sources of income for Bond during the 1950s to the 1970s and even the 1980s, paying about Rs 35-Rs 50 per write-up. He constantly churned out stories and articles because they were his “bread and butter”. And when things went really bad, he even did some odd jobs. Things changed for the struggling writer when publishing houses began to find a footing in India.While the search for authentic stories from India was just beginning, here was Bond, with his tonnes and tonnes of stories and articles, ready to be compiled in anthologies and collections. The freelancer soon became an adored figure – loved and revered by generations of readers.”Of course I want the royalty checks, but my desires are very simple. I did not have a very happy childhood so I want to ensure that my grandchildren have a secured life, so should Rakesh and Bina (his adopted family),” he noted.A child at heart, Bond leads the visiting correspondent to the legendary window and says that “nobody, nobody has this view”. At night, “the sky is tremendous with stars”, the sparrows come at noon “to squabble on the windowsill” and clouds are “passers-by” during the day. “Here I sit,” he says, pointing to a small bed, tucked in the far end corner of the room, “and write”.There are occasional visitors, trekking all the way from Mussoorie to see his house. “Yesterday, someone was clicking pictures of my staircase and I thought this is the worst staircase in all of Mussoorie, why would someone want its pictures? Then he saw me looking out of the window and the camera immediately turned towards me, I quietly disappeared,” he laughed. A chronicler of his life, almost everything that Bond has written comes from his own experiences. He maintained that he is writing more than ever before because, apart from his memory growing stronger with age, he has a much broader and larger range of people and experiences to write about. In his latest book “Stumbling Through Life” (Rupa), releasing on his birthday, he weaves together a selection of his essays and writings to bring to the reader the rich tapestry of his life. “If some day I am to be remembered at all, it should be for the stories and tales I have written. I am a very simple man, always believed in the beauty of small things, I am grateful to the readers for loving me so much. My stories belong to them as much as they belong to me,” he says, his voice soft and emotional.last_img read more

RBU teachers withdraw resignations after assurance from Partha

first_imgKolkata: The intervention and assurance of state Education minister Partha Chatterjee resulted in the withdrawal of resignation by heads of four departments at Rabindra Bharati University (RBU), who had resigned on Monday alleging lackadaisical attitude on the part of the varsity in probing the allegations of gender and caste discrimination by a geography teacher.”I have spoken to the Vice-Chancellor, who has already constituted a committee to probe the allegations. I have asked him to speed up the probe and bring the results of the same in public,” Chatterjee said. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataAccording to sources, Chatterjee went to the varsity campus at BT Road on Tuesday afternoon, after being instructed by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in the wake of resignation of four departmental heads, namely those of Sanskrit, Political Science, Economics and Education. Chatterjee also spoke to the resigning teachers and urged them to return to work so that academic activities in the varsity are not jeopardised. It may be mentioned that the problem had originated with professor of Geography Saraswati Kerketa resigning, alleging objectionable remarks on part of some members of the student’s union in the varsity regarding her caste. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateThe teacher, who suffers from a bone degenerative disease, had fallen ill after the alleged harassment. A committee was constituted for probing the allegations that were made at the end of last month. But the report regarding the same has not been made public yet. Chatterjee has appealed to the students to seek apology from the teachers who had been ashamed due to their conduct. “It is your duty to respect teachers and maintain a good relation with them,” he added. The Education minister also tried to contact the geography professor but found her phone switched off. Chatterjee also made it clear that if somebody from the Trinamool Congress student’s union is found involved in the incident, strong action will be taken against him/her.last_img read more

IFJAS 2019 concludes in Delhi

first_imgThe 12th edition of three-day-long Indian Fashion Jewellery & Accessories Show (IFJAS 2019), organised by the Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH) generated estimated business inquiries worth Rs 145 crores on its conclusion on July 6, at India Expo Centre and Mart, Greater Noida Expressway, Delhi-NCR said Ravi K. Passi Chairman – EPCHRakesh Kumar, Director General – EPCH informed that more than 504 overseas buyers and their buying representatives visited the fair to source their requirements from a diverse range of products under one-roof showcased by over 250 Indian exporters, manufacturers and entrepreneurs from various parts of India along with special regional flavour with participation of artisans from Eastern, Western and Southern regions of India. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfKumar further said that IFJAS is an exemplary International exhibition – which with focus on product lines that many buyers would find only in India and intricacies and exquisiteness of the Indian traditional as well as contemporary fashion jewellery – has created a niche in the world markets and has tremendous potential for exports. During IFJAS, fashion jewellery, bags and accessories were exclusively promoted through fashion shows during all days. Buyers looked keen and interested for new innovative design collections of the participants. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveOn the second day of the show, distribution of Ajay Shankar Memorial awards to best design and display stands in a colourful ceremony followed by cultural performances was a total different experience for the visiting buyers, who appreciated the ambiance of the networking with cultural performances by the artists. The awards were given away by Manoj Tiwari, Member of Parliament and President of BJP, Delhi. The wonderful range of fashion items including jewellery, semi precious fashion jewellery, fancy shoes and embroidered fashion accessories etc. were displayed, keeping western tastes and preferences in focus. Buyers from Argentina, Barbados, Brazil, Belgium, Colombia, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, Russia, Senegal, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, UAE, UK and USA visited during three days extravaganza, and sourced the requirement of exquisite range of products of fashion jewellery and accessories. Apart from above, buyers from CIS countries namely Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Tajikistanand buyers from African countries like Congo, Ghana, Gambia, Senegal, Nigeria and South Africa also visited the show. The Handicrafts exports during the year 2018 – 19 is Rs 26590.25 crores – registering a growth of 15.46% in rupee terms and 6.44% in dollar terms over the same period last year. Further, the exports of Fashion Jewellery and Accessories during the year 2018-19 has been Rs 2332.97 Crores registering a growth of 11.34% over the same period last year. The 12th edition of the show ended with positive note, not only for the exhibiting companies but for the organisers of IFJAS 2019 as well.last_img read more

Exhibition Celebrates the Contribution of Women for International Womens Day

first_imgA new exhibition in Florence is celebrating the contribution of women in Italian history, in a special event timed to coincide with International Women’s Day. The exhibition will take place at the Gallerie degli Uffizi in Florence, and is titled Female Perspectives: Women of Talent and Commitment 1861-1926. It aims to showcase the professional development and talent of women in Italy during the 19th and early 20th centuries.The curators have brought together works of art, artifacts and photographs that illustrate the various forms of work performed by women, often focusing in on aspects of labor that have gone unacknowledged in the grand historical narratives of this important era.Meyer Bros & Co. Poster, 5th Avenue Theatre, typographic print on pasteboard 29-30 April – 1 May 1896 by kind permission of the Natiello Colosimo family, FlorenceThe objects and artworks that form the focus of the exhibition date from between 1861 and 1926, two dates with a special significance in women’s history in Italy.In 1861, women were first permitted to join the Artisan’s Brotherhood, a long-standing association of skilled craftsmen, from which women had been historically excluded. Their admission into this association was a sign of a growing acceptance of female skilled labor in Italy.Meyer Bros & Co. Poster, 5th Avenue Theatre, typographic print on pasteboard 29-30 April – 1 May 1896 by kind permission of the Natiello Colosimo family, Florence65 years later, in 1926, Grazia Deledda won the Nobel Prize for Literature, for her seminal novel Canes in the Wind. She was the first Italian woman to win the prize, and this was regarded as an important step in the public acceptance of women in the fields of education, literature and academia in Italy.The exhibition traces the development of women’s emancipation across this formative period in Italian history, as the country was reunified and women came to occupy new roles in the public sphere.Meyer Bros & Co. Poster, 5th Avenue Theatre, typographic print on pasteboard 29-30 April – 1 May 1896 by kind permission of the Natiello Colosimo family, FlorenceThe curators also aim to shed light on women at all levels of the social scale. For example, according to curator Simonella Condemi, it pays particular attention to the labor produced by rural female workers, many of whom were engaged in hard physical work, tending to crops and animals.However, they also developed cottage industries by making clothes, knitting, mending equipment and farming gear, and weaving straw, as is clearly demonstrated by the selection of paintings in the exhibition by Silvestro Lega.Many of these forms of labor have traditionally been overlooked, and the curators, therefore, wanted to celebrate these diverse female contributions to the developing Italian economy.Meyer Bros & Co. Poster, 5th Avenue Theatre, typographic print on pasteboard 29-30 April – 1 May 1896 by kind permission of the Natiello Colosimo family, FlorenceEttore Tito (Castellammare di Stabia 1859 – Venice 1941) Horsewoman c. 1906 oil on canvas Raccolte Frugone, GenoaWomen at the higher end of the social scale also experienced a transformation in their public and professional lives. Throughout the course of the 19th century, improved access to education for women opened doors to careers as writers and teachers.Although women’s participation in these spheres was still conditioned by patriarchal norms and expectations, the emergence of the “literary salon” in Florentine society created a space for women to make important contributions to the new intellectual movements sweeping through Europe.Paolo Troubetzkoy (Intra 1866 – Suna 1938) Model Dressing or Undressing 1921 bronze Raccolte Frugone, GenoaIndeed, Florence emerged a significant hub of female intellectual and literary activity, and attracted an international crowd, including many women who felt stifled by the limitations placed on women in their home countries.In this period, the city attracted figures such as the acclaimed poet Elizabeth Barratt Browning, the biographer Jessie White Mario, and the translator and poet Theodosia Trollope.Giuseppe De Nittis (Barletta 1846 – Saint-Germain-en-Laye 1884) Posing 1869 watercolour on paper Galleria Berman, TurinCondemi, the curator of the exhibition and the director of the Galleria d’Arte Moderna di Palazzo Pitti, commented on the struggle that women faced to carve out professional lives and simultaneously emancipate themselves from the domestic sphere.Speaking about the aims of the exhibition, she said, “we have endeavored to pay tribute to women’s tireless toil by showcasing both the variety of different ways in which that toil was expressed, and women’s talent in the fields of art, photography, writing, teaching, politics and many other spheres.”Giuseppe De Nittis (Barletta 1846 – Saint-Germain-en-Laye 1884) Posing 1869 watercolour on paper Galleria Berman, TurinGiuseppe De Nittis (Barletta 1846 – Saint-Germain-en-Laye 1884) 1869-Galleria Berman, TurinAlmanacco della donna italiana 1922 Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, FlorenceIda Baccini (Florence 1850-1911) Il romanzo d’una maestra 1901 Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, FlorenceIda Baccini (Florence 1850-1911) Il romanzo d’una maestra 1901 Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, FlorenceIda Baccini (Florence 1850-1911) Il romanzo d’una maestra 1901 Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, FlorenceIn doing so, the exhibition also sheds light on the important role of Florence as a space where women could develop new professional roles in the public sphere.The popularity of the literary salon allowed women in Florence to carve out a space in which they could develop ideas in politics and philosophy, experiment with new artistic approaches and art forms, and make inroads into the fields of knowledge, science and academia.Fratelli AlinariFemale Worker at the Manifattura Tabacchi, San Pancrazio, Florence1901photographArchivi Alinari, FlorenceAs Italy was finally reunified in the second half of the 19th century, the conditions were created that would provide women with new opportunities for professional development.Fratelli AlinariFemale Worker at the Manifattura Tabacchi, San Pancrazio, Florence1901photographArchivi Alinari, FlorenceThis exhibition promises to be a celebration of the important, and often overlooked, role of women and female labor during this fascinating period in Italian history.Read another story from us: Exhibition Sheds New Light on Persecuted and Forgotten Female Artists of ModernismFemale Perspectives: Women of Talent and Commitment 1861-1926 runs from March 7th to May 26th, 2019, at the Pitti Palace, Florence.last_img read more

NFL not counting Bradys playoff TDs is criminal

first_imgGuest:Albert Breer – MMQB Senior Writer joins the show to discuss the Patriots getting their act together; and why people around the league are high on Baker Mayfield.Ben Volin – Boston Globe Patriots Beat Writer joins the show to break down the Patriots TNF win over the Colts; why he wasn’t overly impressed with the win.Ty Law – Former All Pro Safety joins the show to discuss why the new offensive friendly NFL rules make it impossible for defenders.Jason McIntyre – Founder of The Big Lead and FS1 contributor is in-studio giving Monday’s headlines, today. NFL not counting Brady’s playoff TD’s is criminalTom Brady threw for his 500th regular season touchdown in last night’s Thursday Nigght win over the Colts, but Colin thinks it’s an outrage that the NFL doesn’t count postseason TD passes because those are the ones that make Brady the greatest of all time.Brady has 71 touchdown tosses in his playoff career, which is 26 more than distant second Joe Montana’s 45, and Peyton Manning’s 40. The NFL should include Brady’s postseason stats, so there’s no question who’s the G.O.A.T. Also: – Brandon Ingram is going to be LeBron’s guy– Colin’s NFL Week 5 Blazin’ 5– Colin’s CFB Pickslast_img read more

Tools to Keep Remote Employees Motivated and Productive

first_img For some people, the idea of working from home can be an appealing, flexible option to commuting into an office every day. According to information from Stanford University, about 10 percent of U.S. employees now regularly work from home.But being at home and disconnected from your team at work can be a recipe for failure. Working remotely can make some people lose their focus and motivation. And for business owners, it can be difficult to track an employee’s progress and accomplishments when the person is working outside the office.Here are three types of options you might want to consider to help keep your team motivated and productive when working remotely:Stay focused: Freckle and Harvest Freckle is best suited for smaller businesses and includes unique features like unlimited projects, simple, yet effective invoice and expense tracking, and it runs in your browser with no install necessary. This time-tracking tool is priced at $39 for up to five users, $79 for up to 15 users and $159 for up to 30 users.Harvest is a time-tracking tool most often utilized by larger businesses, but can be handy for businesses with a small team as well. The tool offers detailed timesheets, robust invoicing features and mobile-friendly expense reporting to help business owners track multiple aspects of their company’s day-to-day operations. This option for helping your business stay focused starts at $12 a month for up to three users.Related: 3 Web Tools for Managing Employees Who Work From HomeCollaborate efficiently: Conference Calling and Oovoo Conference Calling is a tool for regular conference calls with your team members. The tool is effective for small businesses due to its ease of use with features like reservationless conference calls, its recording capabilities that easily save an MP3 of your meeting and an easy-to-use web manager to help give the moderator of the call insight on who’s on the call and who’s talking. The service is available in three pricing plans for small businesses, starting at $19 for unlimited conference calls for up to 15 callers a month.Oovoo is another video conferencing and collaboration tool that offers a free version for up to 12 minutes of 12-way video chat, available on desktop, mobile, tablet, web and Facebook. The premium version is $29.99 a year or $2.99 a month, with no ads and offers video storage of up to 1,000 minutes.Oovoo allows for a video recording of your meeting, desktop sharing, text chat, the ability to watch YouTube videos together, send up to 25 MB of files and high-definition video streaming.Keep organized: WORK[etc] and BasecampWORK[etc] is a web-based tool that helps organizations of all sizes stay organized, especially smaller companies with remote teams. It combines the functionality of a customer relationship management (CRM) system, project management, billing, sales, support and collaboration in an all-in-one cloud platform across all devices. It is a total business management system that helps organize your sales team, projects, operations, finance team, support team, management and business owners as one unit. WORK[etc] starts at $195 a month for three users with $39 per month for each additional user with 10,000 contacts and 15 GB of storage.Basecamp is a popular project management tool that can help your team stay organized across their various tasks and clients. It’s a scaleable tool for an organization since it is both simple to use due to its intuitive, user-friendly design, as well as fast to load and build onto a project. Discussions, documents, milestones, scheduling, tasks, questions and more all live alongside your projects, making it easy to understand what’s going on from a high level since your efforts are centralized. Basecamp starts at $20 a month to manage up to 10 projects at once for businesses of all sizes.Related: How to Maintain Security When Employees Work Remotely 4 min read Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals October 4, 2013 Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Register Now »last_img read more

A Glimmer of Compromise on Net Neutrality as FCC Comment Period Ends

first_img A proposal quietly filed two months ago by AT&T that would allow Internet “fast lanes” but with consumers in the driver’s seat is abruptly receiving a flurry of attention.The proposal would reestablish the general ban on “paid prioritization,” the jargon term for fast lanes, unless the consumer authorized greater speed for preferred services. The idea was outlined in a July 17 blog post by Bob Quinn, AT&T’s senior vice president for federal regulation and the corporation’s chief privacy officer. It was little noticed prior to a Washington Post article published Monday.Related: The Latest FCC Net Neutrality Rules Should Be OpposedQuinn, noting that AT&T supported the 2010 Open Internet Order that was largely struck down in January by a federal court, wrote the corporation had filed comments with the Federal Communications Commission supporting a ban “paid prioritization – where an ISP [Internet Service Provider] prioritizes packets over the consumer’s last mile broadband Internet access service without being directed to perform that prioritization by the consumer.”Taken at face value, the AT&T position would remove a key complaint from net neutrality advocates that the current rule proposal allowing “fast lanes” would allow ISPs to cut lucrative deals with content providers rich enough to afford them, leaving everyone else behind.At the opposite end of the debate, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has advocated the FCC reclassify ISPs as “common carriers” subject to regulation as utilities, as the old landline phone company was, but with “forbearance” to limit the application of unwieldy regulations never intended for the Internet.”So while we call on the FCC to do the right and sensible thing and reclassify (ISPs as common carriers), we must simultaneously demand that the FCC explicitly reject any telecommunications regulations beyond specific and narrow prohibitions and requirements designed to create a fair and level playing field for innovation and user choice,” the EFF wrote in a blog post. The proposed FCC rule that would allow the so-called fast lanes received roughly 1.5 million comments, ranging from profanity-laced tirades against cable companies to legal briefs. The public discussion period ended Monday. An analysis of the comments by the Sunlight Foundation found barely 1 percent support rule proposal. For the most part, the internet service providers (ISPs), including AT&T and its peers Verizon, Time Warner Cable and Comcast, along with aligned industry organizations and Republican lawmakers, support the rule but almost no one else does.Related: WATCH: Comedian John Oliver Takes On FCC in Witty Net Neutrality RantThe debate has gradually shifted from a vague concept of “net neutrality” to a call from edge providers and activists for reclassifying ISPs as utilities subject to much tighter FCC regulation under Title II of the Federal Communications Act. Several Senate Democrats support Title II regulation, as do many “edge providers,” the regulator’s term for businesses that use the Internet to sell goods and services. Many successful companies, such as Etsy, have argued passionately for reclassification, claiming they could not have taken root if unaffordable “fast lanes” were the rule when they launched.The ISPs have argued regulating them like the old landline phone company will stymie investment in greater broadband infrastructure, if only because of the uncertainty that will certainly follow such a major regulatory reordering, and actually move ISPs into a regulatory framework that allows paid prioritization.FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has said the commission has sufficient authority under the existing regulatory designation to protect net neutrality but, in his response to the letter from Senate Democrats, he wrote ” the Commission is also seriously considering moving forward to adopt rules using Title II of the Communications Act as the foundation for our legal authority.” Net neutrality advocates contend the federal court decision that overturned the FCC’s 2010 Open Internet Rule makes it clear the commission’s previous rule is justified for regulating ISPs but unenforceable unless ISPs are reclassified as “common carriers” under Title II.Wheeler has said the commission will decide the issue by the end of this year.Related: U.S. Court of Appeals Overturns Net Neutrality Problem Solvers with Jason Feifer September 16, 2014 Hear from business owners and CEOs who went through a crippling business problem and came out the other side bigger and stronger.center_img 4 min read Listen Nowlast_img read more