August 31, 2019

Data from savvy cabbies to help improve online mapping

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Waze turning road warriors into map builders Citation: Data from savvy cabbies to help improve online mapping (2010, November 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-11-savvy-cabbies-online.html Microsoft Research Asia engineers are analyzing three months’ worth of data from GPS units installed in more than 33,000 taxi cabs in Beijing in the hope of identifying the short cuts and side streets frequented by drivers who know the best routes to take at any given time. To do the analysis, they designed a software program dubbed “T-Drive” to merge with satellite map information. Team leader Yu Zheng says the system outperforms the estimates provided by online mappers such as Google, Mapquest, and Bing, which use data on speed limits and the length of the road. These mapping systems can rarely help drivers select short cuts or routes around traffic light delays or jams.Over 60 percent of T-Drive’s routes were faster than those provided by Google or Bing, and at least half of these results were 20 percent faster or better, giving an overall saving of 16 percent off the duration of the trip. This is equivalent to shaving an average of five minutes off per 30 minutes of traveling. A web-based user interface of T-Drive. Image credit: Microsoft Research. Explore further So far the system applies only to Beijing and does not yet include real-time data such as information on accidents or other hazards, but the system should eventually be real-time and applicable to any city with a large number of taxis on the road. Other systems are also being worked on, including a collaborative approach by Nokia and the University of California, which uses GPS information from motorists’ mobile phones. Another system, from Silicon Valley company, Waze, allows drivers to share their real-time routes with online social networks to help other drivers adjust their routes to the current traffic conditions. Waze co-founder, Ehud Shabtai, said the Beijing approach makes sense, saying “you can probably assume routes taxi drivers take are more optimal,” and the best short cuts may not be known to less savvy drivers. Faster routes are also not always the shortest on the map, he said.The T-Drive findings are being presented this week in San Jose, California at the International Conference on Advances in Geographic Information Systems.center_img — T-Drive: research.microsoft.com/apps/pu … fault.aspx?id=138985– IEEE research paper (PDF): research.microsoft.com/pubs/13 … driver-demo-IEEE.pdf Application scenario of T-Drive. Image credit: Yu Zheng, Microsoft research (PhysOrg.com) — Microsoft is planning to tap into the intimate knowledge taxi drivers have of their cities to improve their online mapping systems and help drivers navigate to their destinations faster. More information: © 2010 PhysOrg.comlast_img read more

August 31, 2019

Researchers suggest controversial approach to forecasting El Nino

first_img El Niño, is of course, a non-seasonal change of weather patterns in different parts of the world—all connected to a change in upper sea level temperatures along the equator. Warm water from below is pushed up, causing sea temperatures near the surface to be abnormally high as it moves towards the Americas. The result is generally more rainfall on the western coasts of North and South America as trade winds carry the moisture to land and droughts in other places such as Australia and Indonesia. By deploying an array of floating temperature sensors throughout the pertinent part of the ocean, scientists have been able to predict with a high degree of accuracy when an El Niño will occur—for up to six months. In this new effort, the researchers claim that using only atmospheric air temperature readings above the Pacific and the Equator, they are able to predict an El Niño up to a year in advance.The new technique is based on data and analysis of patterns that link air temperatures over the ocean at the equator with temperatures over the rest of the Pacific Ocean. Their analysis showed that when the two temperature readings are closely linked, the odds of an El Niño go up—enough to allow for relative percentages to be calculated. Their data shows, they say, that that for the year coming up, 2014-2015, there is a 75 percent chance of an El Niño occurring.Other researchers thus far aren’t as confident of the team’s results—they suggest that the limited amount of data the researchers had available to them means their predictions are premature. Others contend that it’s just not possible to predict such a complicated weather event using such a simplistic approach. For this coming year, it may not matter, as most other climatologist using conventional methods are also predicting this will be an El Niño year as well. (Phys.org) —An international team of researchers has ignited a controversy over their claim to be able to predict El Niño up to a year in advance. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the team claims their method, which relies solely on atmospheric temperature readings, accurately predicted the last two El Niño years. Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Explore further Citation: Researchers suggest controversial approach to forecasting El Nino (2014, February 11) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-02-controversial-approach-el-nino.html More information: Very early warning of next El Niño, Josef Ludescher, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1323058111AbstractThe most important driver of climate variability is the El Niño Southern Oscillation, which can trigger disasters in various parts of the globe. Despite its importance, conventional forecasting is still limited to 6 mo ahead. Recently, we developed an approach based on network analysis, which allows projection of an El Niño event about 1 y ahead. Here we show that our method correctly predicted the absence of El Niño events in 2012 and 2013 and now announce that our approach indicated (in September 2013 already) the return of El Niño in late 2014 with a 3-in-4 likelihood. We also discuss the relevance of the next El Niño to the question of global warming and the present hiatus in the global mean surface temperature.center_img © 2014 Phys.org The 1997 El Nino seen by TOPEX/Poseidon. Credit: NASA Weak El Nino possible by mid-2014, WMO says 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

August 31, 2019

New slowly evolving Type Ibn supernova discovered

first_imgLeft: OGLE-2014-SN-131 (blue circle) in a VLT acquisition image taken with an R−special filter on November 29.1, 2014 (JD 2456990.08). Right: NTT image from August 1.2, 2016 (JD 2457601.74), showing no visible host at the SN location. Credit: Karamehmetoglu et al., 2017. (Phys.org)—An international team of astronomers has detected a new slowly evolving Type Ibn supernova as part of the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment (OGLE). The new event, designated OGLE-2014-SN-131, has the longest rise time ever observed in Type Ibn supernovae. The discovery is described in a paper published Mar. 23 on the arXiv pre-print server. Type Ibn supernovae are explosions whose spectra are characterized by low-velocity helium emission lines. They are thought to be the core-collapse explosions of massive stars whose ejecta interact with helium-rich circumstellar material. They have also relatively high peak luminosities and are blue at peak.Type Ibn supernovae are usually fast evolving with a short rise to peak brightness (less than two weeks) and a subsequent fast decline. However, a group of researchers led by Emir Karamehmetoglu of the Stockholm University in Sweden has found a new Type Ibn supernova that exhibits an unprecedentedly long rise time and a much broader light curve compared to other supernovae in this class.Karamehmetoglu’s team discovered OGLE-2014-SN-131 on November 11, 2014 using the OGLE-IV Transient Detection System. Afterward, the researchers conducted follow-up photometric observations of this supernova with the OGLE telescope at the Las Campanas Observatory in Chile and with the Gamma-Ray Burst Optical/Near-Infrared Detector (GROND) mounted on the 2.2m MPG/ESO telescope at La Silla, also in Chile. Moreover, they performed spectroscopic observations of OGLE-2014-SN-131 with the ESO New Technology Telescope (NTT) at La Silla and with the Very Large Telescope (VLT) at Cerro Paranal in Chile.These observations show that OGLE-2014-SN-131 spectroscopically resembles other Type Ibn supernovae such as SN 2010al and showcases also peak luminosity and post-peak colors similar to other events in this class. Notably, however, the light curve of OGLE-2014-SN-131 is broader and longer-rising than any other Type Ibn supernova.”Spectroscopy and multi-band photometry of OGLE14-131 have been presented. Identification of prominent He I emission lines classifies this SN as a Type Ibn. While, spectroscopically, OGLE14-131 is identified as a normal SN Ibn, when compared to other Type Ibn SNe, its broad light curve shows the longest rise time ever observed for this SN class,” the authors write.The researchers try to explain this record-long rise time, noting that it requires higher ejecta and circumstellar material masses for the progenitor when compared to typical supernova Ibn progenitors. Therefore, they concluded that the most likely progenitor scenario for OGLE-2014-SN-131 is a massive Wolf–Rayet star.”To explain the unusually long rise time, the broad light curve, the light curve decline, and the spectra characterized by narrow emission lines, we favor a powering mechanism where the SN ejecta are interacting with a dense curcumstellar material. The progenitor of OGLE-2014-SN-131 was likely a Wolf-Rayet star with a mass greater than that of a typical SN Ibn progenitor, which expelled the circumstellar material that the SN is interacting with,” the team wrote in the paper.The astronomers added that given the fact that OGLE-2014-SN-131 has an unusually massive progenitor for a Type Ibn supernova, we should expect a low number of similar slowly evolving events as such massive stars should be relatively rare. Astronomers discover new gas giant exoplanet More information: OGLE-2014-SN-131: A long-rising Type Ibn supernova from a massive progenitor, arXiv:1703.08222 [astro-ph.HE] arxiv.org/abs/1703.08222AbstractType Ibn supernovae (SNe Ibn) are thought to be the core-collapse explosions of massive stars whose ejecta interact with He-rich circumstellar material (CSM). We report the discovery of a SN Ibn, with the longest rise-time ever observed, OGLE-2014-SN-131. We discuss the potential powering mechanisms and the progenitor nature of this peculiar stripped-envelope (SE), circumstellar-interacting SN. Optical photometry and spectroscopy were obtained with multiple telescopes including VLT, NTT, and GROND. We compare light curves and spectra with those of other known SNe Ibn and Ibc. CSM velocities are derived from the spectral analysis. The SN light curve is modeled under different assumptions about its powering mechanism (56Ni decay, CSM-interaction, magnetar) in order to estimate the SN progenitor parameters. OGLE-2014-SN-131 spectroscopically resembles SNe Ibn such as SN 2010al. Its peak luminosity and post-peak colors are also similar to those of other SNe Ibn. However, it shows an unprecedentedly long rise-time and a much broader light curve compared to other SNe Ibn. Its bolometric light curve can be reproduced by magnetar and CSM-interaction models, but not by a 56Ni-decay powering model. To explain the unusually long rise-time, the broad light curve, the light curve decline, and the spectra characterized by narrow emission lines, we favor a powering mechanism where the SN ejecta are interacting with a dense CSM. The progenitor of OGLE-2014-SN-131 was likely a Wolf-Rayet star with a mass greater than that of a typical SN Ibn progenitor, which expelled the CSM that the SN is interacting with. Citation: New slowly evolving Type Ibn supernova discovered (2017, April 3) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-04-slowly-evolving-ibn-supernova.html © 2017 Phys.org Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

A call to add a wellbeing index to national economic measures

first_img Explore further What if the government of a country, such as the United States, releases glowing economic reports, but fails to include companion documents that outline how happy its residence are? Graham, Laffan and Pinto point out that judging the health of a country by its economic numbers alone does not give a true picture. For example, GDP numbers for the U.S. are currently high, while unemployment numbers are very low. Things must be good, right? If that is the case, why is the country experiencing such a high suicide rate? And why is life expectancy falling? They suggest that national economic reports need to be updated to include a well-being index (as opposed to the notorious misery index once proposed by economist Arthur Okun.) Including such an index would not be a flight of fancy, they note, it would offer policymakers a better frame of reference, or perhaps a warning light. If the powerhouse countries of the world had such an index, perhaps the global economic crises that started in 2008 could have been averted. They suggest that adding measures such as a well-being index is necessary for long-term sustainability.The authors also note that well-being metrics have a come a long way over the past few decades and can offer policy-makers statistics at virtually every level of a society. They can also offer lawmakers pertinent information about social issues, which could come in handy during election cycles. They point out that economic indicators now present a paradox—some numbers may show prosperity while others indicate something wildly different is going on. They suggest a well-being index could be a tool that helps to resolve such inconsistencies and note that some countries such as Bhutan have already climbed on board—officials there carry out a survey every five years to test the mood of the country. And the U.K. has been measuring national happiness since 2011. They suggest others follow the lead. Citation: A call to add a well-being index to national economic measures (2018, October 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-10-well-being-index-national-economic.html More information: Carol Graham et al. Well-being in metrics and policy, Science (2018). DOI: 10.1126/science.aau5234 This index measures progress and sustainability better than GDP Journal information: Sciencecenter_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. A trio of economists is suggesting that it is time to add a well-being index to national economic measures. Carol Graham with the Brookings Institution, Kate Laffan with the London School of Economics and Sergio Pinto with the University of Maryland have published a Perspective piece in the journal Science outlining their arguments for adding measurements such as degree of happiness to economic indicators. © 2018 Phys.org Credit: CC0 Public Domainlast_img read more

August 31, 2019

Reinterpretation of Tulán52 excavation suggests social complexity among late huntergatherers

first_img © 2018 Science X Network Journal information: Antiquity 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. More information: Lautaro Núñez et al. Tulán-52: a Late Archaic ceremonial centre at the dawn of the Neolithisation process in the Atacama Desert, Antiquity (2018). DOI: 10.15184/aqy.2018.195 Credit: Antiquity (2018). DOI: 10.15184/aqy.2018.195 Archeologists unearth 3,300 year old complex in Israelcenter_img Citation: Reinterpretation of Tulán-52 excavation suggests social complexity among late hunter-gatherers (2018, November 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-11-reinterpretation-tuln-excavation-social-complexity.html Explore further In this new effort, Núñez and Perlès have revisited two stone complexes excavated in the Atacama Desert in Chile. Both were built by Neolithic people thousands of years ago. One site, called Tulán-54 is believed to be older than the second—perhaps as old as 5000 years. The second site, named Tulán-52 is believed to have been used from approximately 1110-900 BC until 550-360 BC. Excavation for the first was completed in 1985—the second was finished in 2015. After much study, researchers working on the excavations concluded that the complexes were semi-sedentary settlements—people both lived in them and used them for ceremonies. In this new effort, the researchers suggest that neither site was ever used as a place to live. They note that both complexes show many signs of being used for rituals but lack signs of settlement. Gold-plated vulture heads have been found, for example, along with mortars and grinding slabs that were used to prepare pigments, and plants that contain hallucinogens. Also, the remains of more than two dozen infants were found.In studying the complexes and the artifacts, the researchers found more similarities between the two than found in prior studies—similarities that suggested more complexity than had been realized before. They suggest that the layout of Tulán-54 and its artifacts indicate that the site was like a fully developed ceremonial center. The way the stones were used to build the complex is one example suggesting a massive concerted effort.The researchers also suggest that innovations that occurred in the second site, such as using camelids to carry material to the site, the use of farming to feed the people, and plant processing to produce hallucinogen effects and metallurgy, all point to a ceremonial purpose—though they suggest it is still not clear what the ceremonies were for. A pair of researchers has found evidence at the Tulán-52 excavation in Chile that suggests the need for a reinterpretation of how the stone complex was used. In their paper published in the journal Antiquity, Lautaro Núñez with Universidad Católica del Norte and Catherine Perlès with Allée de l’Université, suggest the new evidence shows more social complexity among the later hunter-gatherers who built and used the complex than previously thought.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Meek Mill Pleads Guilty To Misdemeanor Gun Cha

first_img Gilbert Carrasquillo by NPR News Bobby Allyn 8.27.19 4:54pm Twelve years after Meek Mill was arrested as a 19-year-old in North Philadelphia on gun and drug charges, his criminal case has officially ended. On Tuesday, Meek pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor firearm charge in Philadelphia. Prosecutors then dismissed all remaining counts against him and the judge imposed no further penalty. The drug and gun case against Meek, whose legal name is Robert Rihmeek Williams, has been active since his 2007 arrest, keeping the hip-hop artist on probation for nearly his entire adult life.”Meek free! I’m not on probation no more,” Meek said to a cheering crowd outside of the courthouse in Philadelphia’s Center City. “I just wanted to come up here and thank all the supporters, because I know y’all probably have family members in jail or people going through the same thing as me. I will continue to do what I do with the reform movement and help the people that help me.” For years, Meek, now 32, clashed with a Philadelphia trial judge Genece Brinkley, who oversaw his case and accused the rapper of not following the rules of his probation, prompting Brinkley to repeatedly scold Mill. In November 2017, Brinkley sentenced Meek to two-to-four years in state prison over probation violations involving riding a dirt bike in New York and his role in an alleged scuffle in the St. Louis airport. This decision turned Meek’s case into a lightning rod for criminal justice reform.While behind bars, celebrity backers of Meek, including Jay-Z, T.I. and Kevin Hart, wrote high-profile op-eds, addressed supporters at rallies and voiced support on social media to highlight what they see as an unjust sentence emblematic of systemic inequities in America’s prison system. Meek, who grew up in Strawberry Mansion, North Philadelphia, also had the support of many Philadelphians throughout his legal saga. During his dozens of court hearings, neighborhood friends and fans would pack the courtroom in support of his release. Throughout this legal battle, Meek has stayed consistent with his musical output, dropping his most recent studio album, Championships, in Nov. 2018, which debuted No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard 200. After serving five months of his sentence, a Pennsylvania appeals court released Meek from prison and granted him bail in April 2018. The appeals court later removed Brinkley from the case and granted the rapper a re-trial due, in large part, to the fact that the only witness who testified against Meek in his original case was a police officer who was later found of lying and theft. Just before his conviction was tossed by the appeals court in July, Meek and Jay-Z were announced as co-chairs of the criminal justice reform organization REFORM Alliance that, to date, has claimed to have raised $50 million dedicated to “changing the laws, policies and practices that perpetuate injustice,” starting with probation and parole.Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner released a statement on the news of Meek’s case being dropped today, saying that the rapper “was unfairly treated in a case that exemplifies the destruction caused by excessive supervision, instances of corruption, and unfair processes in our criminal courts.” Krasner went on to say that Meek has “demonstrated significant rehabilitation; he has evolved and grown” since his initial arrest more than a decade ago. Meek took to Twitter to underscore his commitment to working as a criminal justice reformer. “I’m extremely grateful that my long legal battle is finally behind me and I appreciate that it has sparked a much-needed discussion about probation reform and the inequalities that exist within our two Americas,” he posted.Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit NPR. Meek Mill Pleads Guilty To Misdemeanor Gun Charge, Ends 12-… last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Rhyming with a reason let the reason be love

A pen is mightier than the sword, and who would agree more than Amit Dahiyabadshah, ideator of the movement called Delhi Poetree Association which encourages and nurtures all budding poets across different walks of life.‘DelhiPoetree is a movement with three measurable objectives apart from the love for poetry- First to promote the hosting of 30 poetry readings across the National Capital region of Delhi every month. Second, to honour 100 contemporary poets as the living treasure of Delhi and to obtain this honour from the government, society at large and the local community of the poet including his/her neighbourhood and to facilitate 100 poets to earn a taxable income from poetry alone by the year 2018,’ says Amit. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Divided into two major parts called Dilli Kavita Kumbh and The Thousand Poets Reading, the association believes that poetry can save society and revive the sense of community.‘Many people mistakenly call Delhi Poetree a club or a group. It isn’t some society, it’s a movement aimed to bring about a revolution through words and not blood,’ he adds.Speaking about its reach, Delhi Poetree is widely recognised and respected as the most active poetry movement now. Its regular well organised readings feature poets in the age groups 6 to 93 and so does its audience that gathers regularly to witness a wide range of poetry for all age groups. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixDelhi Poetree has featured over 1300 poets in the last 9 years since its advent in 2003 and is touted as the biggest poetry event of its kind now.‘We are looking for original talent in the city. Everyone is welcome to visit and read out their poetry. Refine the crude and rootless population of the city, identify and edify their latent poetic talent and, finally, help them get published and sold. Besides the fact that there is no other open platform for original poetry in Delhi, the Poetree also brings together enthusiasts and gives everyone a chance to shine,’ Dahiyabadshah says. Agrees Manu Sharma, a regular at such events: ‘Poetry is the next big thing and forums like these give a platform for like minded people to reconnect and share their thoughts.’‘I narrated a self creation titled ‘Suno Krantiveer’ which was a satire on three most well known aspects of life which are abused the most- love, religion and revolution.Today everyone wishes to revolutionise the world, be it the Kejriwals or the Moists. But deep down no one really cares for the universal good rather have their own vested interests mostly about aquiring power. My poetry intends to aware people and educate rather than titillate,’ Manu signs off. read more

August 31, 2019

Displaying the aura of colours

first_imgLife is a vast array of colours that present an aura of emotions expressed in various artistic forms, but it is only imagination and innovation that drives artists to present this in ways that often perplex the common viewer.And when artists with different ways of looking at their environs come together, the result will be something that will be pleasing to the eye and satisfying to the soul.The exhibition which will continue till 9 March is a group show of established and upcoming artists, exhibiting a harmonious blend of contemporary and modern styles of paintings. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The foray has canvases with an array of colours and an aura of various artworks combined with emotions expressing each artist’s mindset and a certain theme that he or she wants to share with the discerning viewer.The curator of the exhibition, Savita Agarwal says that the artist’s vision, perception, imagination and depiction of his thought process is depicted with such clarity that life is infused in the art and it speaks for itself and takes the viewer into the soul of the painting.The moods and moments of the work depend on the artists’ state of mind at the particular point of time he is depicting with his brush and colours.This one’s for the art lovers so head over and make sure you get a look into the magic the 13 have created.WHEN: On till 9 MarchWHERE: Epicentre, Sector 44 Gurgaonlast_img read more

August 31, 2019

With kid gloves

first_imgIn a bid to expand the market for Children’s film and encourage talent in the country, Children’s Film Society India (CFSI) has announced the launch of a three day National children’s film festival (NCFF) for the first time ever. The move comes close on the heels of the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi’s cleanliness drive announcement and in keeping with his vision, the CFSI has announced the central theme of the festival as ‘Swachhta’. The NCFF, the event will focus on Children’s films which are either made or shot in India or the makers are Indian. The festival will kick-start at the capital’s Siri fort Auditorium from 14 November, Children’s Day and will conclude on 16 November 2014.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The festival will screen a score of unreleased films with CFSI’s production and latest offering, Pappu Ki Pugdandi leading the pack. Other fresh content that will be put up in the festival are Shortcut Safari which will be premiered for the first time  The Goal, Mahek Mirza , EkAjooba- are yet another CFSI production, Kummati,  Krish Trish and Baltiboy-3 are few curated movies amongst others. The films are carefully handpicked to create an opportunity for children to experience qualitative content made exclusively for them. Some of these films have won several awards, globally.NCFF has garnered eyeballs from the country’s celebrated Bollywood personalities such as Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn and Sonakshi Sinha, who have culled out time from their busy schedule to wish CFSI and NCFF through video bytes. Sania Mirza is the Guest of honour and celebrities such as Jimmy Shergill and Shaimak Davar team will participate in cultural programmes and workshops.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

When knowledge pulls in the crowd

first_imgThe countdown has begun. The Kolkata Book Fair which is said to be Asia’s largest book fair and witnesses the highest footfall returns with its 39th edition scheduled from January 29 till February 8 at Milan Mela in Kolkata as announced at a press conference held in the nation capital.Commemorating the 450th birth anniversary of William Shakespeare and Dylan Thomas’s birth centenary, separate pavilions are being made that will feature the works of the two legendary authors. The fair will also mark works of W B Yeats, Bengali author Suniti Chatterji and actor-director Sombhu Mitra in three different pavillions. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’With UK returning as focal theme country after a gap of 16 years, it be showcasing the best of its offer in arts and culture, education, and research through the UK government’s Knowledge is Great campaign, which includes information on the huge range of scholarships available for studying in the UK. While addressing the gathering at the conference, Rob Lynes, Director British Council India, said, “We are delighted that UK is the focal theme at this year’s Kolkata Book Fair. The British Council’s wants to showcase what the United Kingdom has to offer India and the rest of the world. A large number of UK publishers will also be present at the Kolkata Book Fair. It is estimated that nearly 80 per cent of books in the higher education category is shipped out from the UK.” Tridib Chatterjee, General Secretary of The Publishers & Booksellers Guild present at the conference said, “A special theme gate, a replica of the British Natural History Museum and another gate to commemorate the 125th birth anniversary of Charlie Chaplin has been set up to greet visitors”. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix26 publishers from Bangladesh as well as those from the US, France, Germany, China, Japan, Columbia, Spain, Elsalvador, Ecuador, the Latin American countries among others are lined up to set up stalls at the Kolkata Book Fair. Some well-known writers like – British author of Bangladeshi origin Zia Haider Rahman whose debut novel In The Light of What We Know (2014), Anita Anand author of the book Sophia, a biography of Sophia Duleep Singh will be present at the fair. Other UK authors at the fair will be Shereen El Feki (author of Sex and the Citadel: Intimate Life in a Changing Arab World), Naomi Alderman (named one of Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists in 2013), QaisraShahraz (author of The Holy Woman), novelist Will Buckingham, Scottish poet Bill Herbertand Ned Thomas, whose memoir Bydoedd / Worlds (Wales Book of the Year 2011) will be launched in Bengali translation at the fair.  The fair will also hold the second edition of the Kolkata Literature Festival from February 6-8. Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen will inaugurate the festival. The book fair will begin on a musical note with Ghazalaw, which celebrates the affinity between Indian Ghazal and the Welsh folk tradition. Mumbai singer Tauseef Akhtar and Welsh singer-songwriter Gwyneth Glyn weave the love poetry of their two ancient traditions together to the accompaniment of harp, tabla, guitar and harmonium. The 38th edition of the International Kolkata Book Fair was visited by 1.8 million booklovers over 12 days and books worth Rs 200 million were sold. “Last year the turnover of the 12 KBF was Rs 20 crore with English books alone selling for Rs 8 crore. We compiled the information provided to us by various participating publishers,” Chatterjee said.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Kolkatans throng malls markets for Puja shopping as rainy spell comes to

first_imgKolkata: With just 35 days to go until the start of Bengal’s biggest festival, city residents thronged various malls and market places in large numbers on Sunday.In the last few weeks the spirit of shopping had been dampened due to rains in the city. Kolkata and its adjoining areas had received moderate to heavy spells of rain due to cyclonic circulation and also because of formation of low pressure trough over Bay of Bengal.As the weather remained sunny from Sunday morning, people decided to go for puja shopping. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe shops in different malls saw a surge in footfall on Sunday. Esplanade and its adjoining areas and Gariahat recorded huge footfall. There was a large crowd in New Market area as well on Sunday afternoon. The food stalls in the area also had a good business.These places in the city will become favourite destinations for people in the next few weeks as Durga Puja comes closer. The shops, especially those selling garments and shoes, saw the highest footfall on Sunday. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedDurga Puja will begin from 15 October this year. People wear new clothes and love to have good food during the Puja days in addition to pandal hopping. The city police have already taken measures to manage the extra rush of shoppers as Durga puja comes nearer.A garment shop owner on Camac Street said that they are ready with new stocks as the Durga puja is just a month away.”We have been eagerly waiting to go for puja shopping for the past few weeks. As it was a clear sunny day, we decided to go out for shopping on Sunday,” said Supratik Dutta, an MBA student and a resident of Jadavpur, who visited Gariahat for shopping on Sunday afternoon.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Bengal has largest sick critical care newborn beds Mamata

first_imgKolkata: West Bengal has the largest number of sick critical care newborn beds and units in the country, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Thursday said. Banerjee made the statement at the start of the Newborn Care week. “Newborn Care Week begins today. In the last 7 years, we have set up 307 Sick Newborn Stabilisation Units (SNSU) in #Bangla. Number of Sick Neonatal Care Units (SNCU) have gone up from 6 to 68. Our state has the largest number of Sick Critical Care Newborn Beds & units in India,” Banerjee wrote on her Twitter handle. Newborn Care Week is celebrated annually in the country from November 15 to 21 to raise awareness about the importance of the newborn care for child survival.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Legal action will be taken against owners of institutional buildings if proper

first_imgKolkata: The state Fire and Emergency Services department will issue notices to the owners of institutional buildings, if it is found that the firefighting systems in their establishments are not working properly.Subsequently, legal action will be taken against them, said Sujit Basu, minister of state for Fire and Emergency Services department on Monday. Basu, along with senior officials of the department, visited several shopping malls in the city. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe decision has been taken following a major fire that had broken out in a shopping complex in South Kolkata recently. Basu said fire audit in 100 institutional buildings will be held every month. Basu, along with senior officials of the department, visited a shopping complex at Kankurgachi and examined the firefighting system. He was annoyed when he saw that smoke alarms installed at the shopping complex did not work. He said the Fire department officials will make surprises checks and examine the condition of the fire extinguishers, sprinklers and anti-smoke devices. They will examine whether the fire exits are maintained properly or not. “Fire safety drills should be conducted regularly in institutional buildings periodically,” he said. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseIf not satisfied with the firefighting arrangements, the Fire and Emergency Services department will issue notices and subsequently take legal action. Incidents of fire in shopping malls and markets have become quite common in Kolkata. In 2018, fire broke out at Bagri Market, in which medicines and garments worth several crores of rupees were destroyed. In March 2010, a devastating fire broke out at Stephen Court, killing more than 40 people. Senior officials of the department said surprise checks will be carried out in KMC-run markets as well. In most of these markets, the condition of electrical wiring is in bad shape. It may be recalled that in the early 1980s, a devastating fire had broken out at Hogg Market. The New Market of today has come up on the burnt portion of the old Hogg Market. A fire in the shop of Bourne and Shepherd on S N Banerjee Road had destroyed the negatives of many priceless photographs.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Westin debuts in Rajarhat

first_imgBringing globally-acclaimed experience of superb facilities, delicious cuisine, innovative wellness initiatives and tailored services, Westin Hotels & Resorts, part of Marriott International Inc., has come up with their eight hotel in India i.e., The Westin Kolkata Rajarhat. The second hotel in Kolkata and East India under the Marriott International portfolio and the first under the Westin Hotels & Resorts umbrella, the property is set to bring the brand’s signature well-being offerings, empowering guests to be their best selves on the road. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfLocated 8 kilometers from Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport and a kilometer away from the International Convention Centre, The Westin Kolkata Rajarhat distinguishes itself by offering an invigorating environment and personal tranquility. The Face of Spirituality, a 105ft mural by the lobby, intricately captures the spirit of the ‘City of Joy’, Kolkata, allowing guests a sense of calmness and serene energy. Built over 8 acres, The Westin Kolkata Rajarhat features 314 well-appointed guestrooms and suites. Each room boasts of an unobstructed view of the Kolkata skyline, and features the Westin brand’s signature Heavenly Bed and upgraded Heavenly Bath amenities, ensuring restful nights and blissful mornings. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveNeeraj Govil, Area Vice President, South Asia, Marriott International said, “The opening of the second Marriott hotel in Kolkata, and the first under the Westin brand, marks a great milestone for Marriott International. After tapping the luxury market, it was but a matter of time before we presented one of our premium brands to the city of Kolkata. The hotel will offer a restorative retreat in the heart of the new business district of Rajarhat with Westin’s signature offerings that will fuel and energize our guests’ experience.”last_img read more

August 31, 2019

India Carpet Expo Progressing carpet exports

first_imgThe 35th edition of India Carpet Expo, an exclusive trade fair for Handmade carpets and other floor-coverings, organized by Carpet Export Promotion Council (CEPC) was inaugurated on March 8 with lamp lighting by Minister of State for Textiles, Ajay Tamta at the NSIC Exhibition Ground, Okhla, New Delhi in the gracious presence of Shantmanu, IAS, Development Commissioner (Handicrafts). Mahavir Pratap Sharma, Chairman, CEPC along with members of the Committee of Administration, Exhibitors and Media were also present. The four-day expo will remain open for business till March 11. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe expo is organized under the aegis of Govt. of India with an aim to promote the cultural heritage and weaving skills of Indian hand-made Carpets and other floor coverings amongst the visiting overseas carpet buyers.”We are very glad that CEPC organizes this expo twice every year to promote Indian weavers worldwide. Every year, this expo generates a huge amount of business. We have everything handmade and hand weaved here, which is the major attraction to the foreign buyers,” said Ajay Tamta, Minister of State for Textiles in a statement. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveMahavir Pratap Sharma, Chairman, CEPC said, “India carpet expo is an ideal platform for International carpet buyers, buying houses, agents, architects and Indian carpet manufacturers and exporters to meet and establish a long-term business relationship. This exhibition is a crucial step towards taking Indian exports of Handmade carpet to much greater and newer heights. He further added, “there are tremendous business opportunities for participating manufacturers and exporters as various prominent buyers of Handmade Carpets from all over the world will be attending the show and orders worth over thousand crores are expected to be executed in near future.” Smriti Zubin Irani, Minister of Textiles, Information and Broadcasting is launching the following initiatives of the Council:China warehouse – China is a focus country for this trade and Indian exporters want more access to various parts of China. Looking to this demand, CEPC has initiated a project to open a warehouse in China. CEPC has registered a company in China and is looking for commercial space in the country for a warehouse both in and outside the custom bonded areas. The intent is to take this trade from 13 million to 40 million USD in the next two years.New website – CEPC has created a new website which will also contain separate B2B and B2C pages, online payment facilities and exhibitions for members. B2C pages will focus on imparting knowledge about the history of Indian handmade carpets, their techniques and variety. Through these pages, a consumer will develop the understanding of the differences in a machine made carpet and a Handmade carpet. B2B pages will make internal functioning strong by making communication and coordination with members faster.Carbon footprint – CEPC believes that their handmade carpet manufacturing processes are labour intensive and environment-friendly. CEPC has conducted an environmental study – Carbon Foot Print (CFP) Study and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) study for its product to assess the environmental aspects and potential impacts associated with the products and its processes. This study can be used to reduce environmental impact and waste, reduce costs, focus product development, support marketing claims, improve product/corporate image and/or identify appropriate performance indicators. Further, doing this study creates common metrics that can be compared and shared across the member exporters or with their suppliers and partners.Women weaver’s training program – 1956 weavers were trained under the Mega Cluster scheme of DC(H) where 96% trainees were women. The project was completely run by CEPC and it was a great enabler in generating skilled workforce in the state of Uttar Pradesh. This project helped the women artisans to be able to share the responsibility of livelihood for the family. CEPC intends to train more women in the next year with the support of the Ministry of Textiles.Rugs of India initiative – CEPC is also intending to launch a ‘Rugs of India Label’, wherein they will have all the benefits of the Kaleen label, but also add the element of Intellectual property and having one’s own design, original designs, and not copy other designers or labels. This will take brand India and its credibility in the eyes of the world at a much higher level.India Carpet Expo is one of the largest Handmade Carpet Fairs in Asia with a unique platform for the buyers to source the best handmade carpets, Rugs and other floor coverings under one roof. With the participation of over 260 exhibitors, it has become a popular destination worldwide on Handmade Carpets. Organizers are extremely happy with the results until today and hope that more buyer will come and make this expo a successful one.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Rhythmology Enjoy the double dose of music

first_imgGet ready to witness a rare performance titled ‘Rhythmology’ by Veshesh – the percussionist and Taufiq Qureshi – one of the most sought-after rhythm programmer, arranger, composer and percussionist in the world.The idea of this initiative is to promote rhythm as all other dimensions of music.Being organised by Dhintan Productions in association with Rhydhun Academy, the event will be held on September 22 at M L Bhartia Auditorium, Alliance Francaise De Delhi, 2 pm onwards. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe performance will be followed by an interactive session, where the audience will be given a chance to ask questions from both the artists.Veshesh is an artist who has dedicated his life to percussions. Music is the air he breaths. His energy and enthusiasm and the range of instruments played by him have made him an acclaimed artist all across the world. Besides doing music shows, jamming sessions with various eminent DJs and artists, corporate shows and managing his own studio, Veshesh is sharing his knowledge of music with the world by conducting classes and workshops in different schools and institutions.Taufiq Qureshi, on the other hand, is known to play Djembe. The depth of his knowledge in the field of music has fetched him lots of love and recognition from all around the globe.Charging the world with his musical charisma and sprinkling his musical expertise is his ultimate passion.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Patients heave sigh of relief as CM ends weeklong impasse

first_imgKolkata: The patients and their family members who were not getting adequate treatment at various state-run hospitals, have breathed a sigh a relief after the junior doctors’ meeting with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee ended fruitfully at Nabanna on Monday.The patients also thanked the Chief Minister for playing a proactive role to resolve the impasse that had been created due to the unyielding mentality of the junior doctors to lift their strike. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataDue to the prolonged strike by the junior doctors, the patients visiting various hospitals were the worst affected. Apart from the agitating junior doctors, many patients and their family members had also kept an eye on television, hoping that the doctors would call off their agitation and normal services would be resumed at outpatient departments (OPD) and the emergency wards of the hospital from Tuesday. The OPDs at most of the medical colleges and hospitals remained shut in the past one week, as a result of which many patients from the districts had to return home without being treated. Even the emergency services were affected in almost all medical colleges in the city, bringing the health services to a grinding halt. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateRatan Biswas, a resident of Belgharia in North 24-Parganas whose family member has been undergoing treatment at NRS Medical College and Hospital, said on Monday: “It is a great moment for those who depend on the state-run hospitals. The situation would have got complicated further if it was not resolved in Monday’s meeting. The Chief Minister has given assurances to meet all the demands of the junior doctors after listening to them with compassion. We are thankful to the Chief Minister for her gesture.” It may be mentioned here that the junior doctors’ agitation has claimed the lives of five patients including two infants in the past one week. The death toll went up in the hospitals due to the unavailability of treatment. Two patients including a 3-day-old infant died in two separate incidents in the state on Saturday. The family members of the deceased alleged that the patients died due to the lack of treatment caused by the prolonged strike of the junior doctors. Thousands of patients have been seriously inconvenienced in the last few days as well.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Explosion at BJP workers home

first_imgKolkata: A blast took place inside a BJP worker’s house at Khejuri in East Midnapore on Sunday night.Local residents ran to the house and found a man lying inside the house with severe injuries. According to sources, residents of Katkadebichak at Janaka village in Khejuri heard a sound of an explosion on Sunday night. When they came out of their houses, they saw smoke coming out of Lalmohan Maity’s house. Khejuri police station was immediately informed. Police reached the spot and started investigating the matter. Till Monday afternoon, four persons were detained and interrogated. Local Trinamool Congress leaders alleged that Maity, who is a BJP worker, used to store explosives and crude bombs and supplied them to other people. It is also alleged that after Lok Sabha Elections result was out, the BJP was trying to unleash terror in and around Khejuri by creating violence. Police said a case has been lodged in this regard. Officers are trying to find out the people who are connected to Maity. Police are trying to identify the source of explosives and crude bombs which were stored inside the house. Police team is patrolling the area to counter any untoward incidents. “Probe is on. A few persons have been detained in this connection. They are being interrogated to identify other culprits,” said V Solomon Nesakumar, Superintendent of Police (SP) of East Midnapore.last_img read more

August 31, 2019

Agri dept holds meeting to take stock of rainfall deficiency woes

first_imgKolkata: Concerned over the dearth of rainfall particularly in the districts of South Bengal, the state Agriculture department on Tuesday held a high-level meeting at Nabanna to take stock of the rainfall and agriculture activities across the state.”The amount of rainfall in the state till date has been around 624 mm, while the deficiency in the state is 27 percent. But our officials believe that by the end of August, the situation will improve and the deficiency can be addressed. At the same time, we have discussed alternative measures that can be adopted if the problem persists,” said Asish Banerjee, state Agriculture minister. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe deficiency in rainfall in South Bengal is more than 50 percent and a number of districts have deficiency over 50 percent. The dismally low amount of rainfall has led to minimum storage of water in the dams, which is also an area of concern for the state government. North Bengal, however, has seen a good amount of rainfall. A senior official in the department said that the officials have been directed to carry out awareness campaigns right from the block to the Panchayat level about the Crop Insurance scheme that was introduced last year. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in state”The premium for the insurance will be borne entirely by the state government if a farmer incurs losses in farming,” the official said. The minister directed the officials of the department at all levels to speed up the Krishak Bandhu scheme that was announced by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on December 31 last year. Till date, the number of beneficiaries under the scheme is over 37 lakh. It may be mentioned that the preparation for sowing of Kharif crops kick off during June and by the middle of August, the sowing of crops gets over. But the monsoon has been very feeble till date and the preparation of sowing has not picked up as desired. “Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is concerned about the abnormal weather conditions and has given us necessary directions to ensure that the farmers are not inconvenienced in pursuing agriculture. She had instructed the department to adopt alternative agriculture methods so that crops can be sown even if there is scanty rainfall,” the official said. The department has already introduced the Bangla Krishi Sech Yojana to extend support to farmers in setting up micro-irrigation facilities that will ensure cultivation using less amounts of water. The technological intervention ensures that cultivation of crops, mainly fruits and vegetables, can be done with minimum water.last_img read more

August 30, 2019

Tim Tebow was a Jet now hes a Met

first_imgTim Tebow couldn’t make it with the Jets, now he’ll try with the Mets. The Mets and GM Sandy Alderson were apparently impressed enough with Tebow’s power and sundial slow throwing motion to sign him to a minor league deal.They announced the signing on their Twitter account this morning.We have signed OF @TimTebow to a minor league contract. He will participate in the #Mets Instructional League. pic.twitter.com/I6gmW0b6hY— New York Mets (@Mets) September 8, 2016 Advertisement Here’s Colin on why Tebow is the perfect fit for minor league baseball.RT FOXSports “RT TheHerd: “Minor league baseball is built for Tim Tebow.” – ColinCowherd #HerdHere pic.twitter.com/dc11lbeDyO“— Tommy Mason (@tommymason006) August 31, 2016center_img Tebow will play for the Mets instructional team in Port Saint Lucie to start his path to Cooperstown. Today in The Herd, Colin revealed that his sources tell him that several teams were interested in Tebow, but the Mets were the most flexible on his demands.“I was on the phone this morning right before the show. 10 teams were interested in Tebow, the New York Mets were the only team willing to allow Tebow to do his SEC football games. Then they’ll send him to Port Saint Lucie. Tim Tebow says he is willing to go two to three years on the buses.”With Tebow, Port Saint Lucie should easily smash all records for instructional league attendance as fans flock to Florida to see baseball’s bearded lady. After all, Tim Tebow is what minor league baseball is all about.“A lot of people will criticize Tebow here. Number one, I worked in minor league baseball. It is built for schticky stuff. Burying a diamond ring in the infield in the 7th inning, mascots everywhere, fireworks shows. You go for the promotion, you don’t go for the games.”Check out Colin’s take on Tebow to the Mets on today’s episode of The Herd..@ColinCowherd: Mets were the only team to allow Tim Tebow to continue his SEC TV job. #TheHerd pic.twitter.com/CvUkCjfH3r— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) September 8, 2016last_img read more