LAS VEGAS — Water managers from seven Southwestern states that depend on the Colorado River for drinking and irrigation water are getting closer to finalizing an unprecedented drought contingency plan they may have to enact in 2020, officials said Thursday.The federal government’s top water official, Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman, was expected to urge action by representatives of Indian tribes and government agencies from Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming during an address at an annual conference in Las Vegas.A pact was supposed to be signed by the end of 2018, under threat that the bureau that controls the water distribution levers on the river would impose its own restrictions affecting drinking water to 40 million people and irrigation for crops in arid parts of U.S. and Mexico.Arizona and Nevada are would be the first states to feel the pinch if a shortage is declared as expected next year. Supplies to California also could be curtailed.After 19 years of drought and increasing demand, the river’s two largest federal water managers project a 52 per cent chance that the river’s biggest reservoir, Lake Mead behind Hoover Dam, will fall low enough to trigger cutbacks under agreements governing the system.The Lower Colorado River Basin states of California, Arizona and Nevada want to keep Lake Mead behind Hoover Dam above a shortage declaration trigger point by using less water than they’re legally entitled to receive.If the lake falls below that level, Arizona will face a 9 per cent reduction in water supply, Nevada a 3 per cent cut and California up to 8 per cent. Mexico’s share of river water also would be reduced.Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming want to keep the surface of Lake Powell above a target level to continue water deliveries to irrigation districts and cities and also keep hydroelectric turbines humming at Glen Canyon Dam.Lake Powell is currently at 43 per cent capacity and Lake Mead is at 38 per cent.Water officials in most of the affected states have signed off on plans in recent weeks, including the key Central Arizona Project irrigation system and the sprawling Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, which serves some 19 million people.Arizona’s plan, unlike other states, still needs approval from state lawmakers. They convene in January.Ken Ritter, The Associated Press
Ottawa: The “trip of a lifetime” to a safari park in Kenya turned into a nightmare for six members of a family from India in Canada who perished when the Nairobi-bound Ethiopian Airlines plane crashed minutes after take-off from Addis Ababa. The Boeing 737 took-off from Bole International Airport on Sunday and lost contact six minutes later before coming down near Tulu Fara village outside the Ethiopian town of Bishoftu, killing all 149 passengers and eight crew on board, including tourists and business travellers. Also Read – Imran Khan arrives in China, to meet Prez Xi JinpingThe victims included Pannagesh Vaidya, 73; his wife Hansini Vaidya, 67; their daughter Kosha Vaidya, 37; her husband Prerit Dixit, 45; and their two children Anushka and Ashka Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown was quoted as saying by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. While the Surat-based Vaidya couple were Indian nationals, their daughter, husband and two children were Canadians of Indian-origin. The family who were living in Canada, heading for a safari vacation, were about to experience “the trip of a lifetime” in Kenya when the tragic loss happened. Also Read – US blacklists 28 Chinese entities over abuses in Xinjiang”This is an unbelievably tragic situation for this family,” Brown said in a statement. “As more details become known, I will provide a further update on how Brampton residents can assist this family. Our thoughts and prayers are with them during this time of sorrow and reflection.” The flags at city hall will remain at half-mast until further notice in honour of the family, Brown said in a message on Twitter. “It’s a huge tragedy,” Manant Vaidya, son of Pannagesh, said. “I lost my parents, I lost my sister. I don’t have anyone else now.” Manant said his sister, who became a Canadian permanent resident in 2003, wanted to take her children to Kenya to visit her birthplace. “They thought March break was the perfect time for them to go over there, have fun,” he said. “It was going to be a really great trip for everybody.”
by Ian Bickis, The Canadian Press Posted Jun 22, 2017 12:55 pm MDT Last Updated Jun 23, 2017 at 7:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Breweries make case that Alberta’s beer tax system is unconstitutional CALGARY – Lawyers for two breweries challenged the constitutionality of Alberta’s tax system on small breweries Thursday, arguing the system unfairly favours producers in the province.Toronto-based Steam Whistle Brewing and Saskatoon-based Great Western Brewing Co. say the system, which charges all small breweries $1.25 per litre sold but returns much of that to Alberta producers in the form of a grant, effectively provides an unconstitutional trade barrier.The system replaced an earlier tax regime, the New West Partnership Trade Agreement, that gave brewers in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan a more direct tax advantage over those in the rest of Canada. Steam Whistle secured an injunction against the old system in January last year.Andrew Stead, lawyer for Steam Whistle, said the NWPTA imposed in October 2015 was an obvious barrier to interprovincial trade.“Small brewers, outside of the New West Partnership, cannot bring their beer free into Alberta. The only reason why they can’t is because of their geographic location. That’s unconstitutional,” he said.But the new system introduced in August 2016, Stead added, provides a rebate to the penny for what Alberta breweries pay in the current markup — making it no different than the old system, outside of making breweries in B.C. and Saskatchewan pay more.“The August markup, aside from poking Saskatchewan and B.C. from the right side of the wall to the wrong side, is otherwise a clumsy attempt to distract and camouflage the fact that it’s the October markup wearing funny glasses and a fake nose,” he said.Stead said there are ways the Alberta government could support its small breweries through grants on marketing or hiring or supporting training programs. But a grant to refund a direct charge on sales is an effective tariff, he said.Great Western CEO Michael Micovcin said the changed tax system adds almost $7 per 24-case of beer that they have to pass on to consumers, since they don’t get the grant that Alberta producers do.“It’s rendered us uncompetitive. We’re seeing a significant reduction in overall sales (and) it’s going to impact the future viability of our company. So this is a matter of survival for us,” Micovcin said outside the courtroom.The defendants, which include the Alberta government and the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission, are expected to present their case Friday. The Alberta government did not respond to a request for comment.
“Poor mental health during adolescence has an impact on educational achievement and increases the risk of alcohol and substance use and violent behavior,” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres, in a statement, stressing that many children and teenagers caught up in conflicts and disasters worldwide, are particularly at risk of psychological distress.According to WHO, half of all mental illnesses begin by the age of 14, but most cases go undetected and untreated. Depression is one of the leading causes of illness and disability among adolescents and suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15 to 29 year-olds.The harmful use of alcohol and illicit drugs among adolescents is a major issue in many countries and can lead to self-destructive behaviour such as unsafe sex or dangerous driving. Eating disorders are also of concern.“A great deal of mental health conditions are both preventable and treatable, especially if we start looking after our mental health at an early age,” said Mr. Guterres.Referring to the commitments of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, he regretted that, while Member States agreed collectively to “leave no one behind”, “those struggling with mental health problems are still being marginalized”. WHO notes that “evidence is growing that promoting and protecting adolescent mental health benefits not just adolescents’ health, in the short- and the long-term, but also economies and society as whole, with healthy young adults able to make greater contributions to the workforce, their families and communities”.If we change our attitude to mental health, we change the world. – UN chief António GuterresAmong the various actions that Governments can take, WHO recommends investing in: greater integration of mental health into broader health and social care systems, under the umbrella of universal health coverage; mental health resilience-building through parents and teachers; and psycho-social provision in schools and community spaces, especially in hardship contexts such as conflict and natural disaster settings.“The United Nations is committed to creating a world where by 2030 everyone, everywhere has someone to turn to in support of their mental health, in a world free of stigma and discrimination,” said the UN chief.“If we change our attitude to mental health – we change the world. It is time to act on mental health.”
ATLANTA — Stephen Curry scored 30 points, Kevin Durant had 28 and Klay Thompson chipped in with 27 as the Golden State Warriors cruised past the Atlanta Hawks 128-111 Monday night, snapping a six-game losing streak on the road.With Curry scoring 18 points in the opening quarter, this one was never in doubt.Golden State raced to a 34-17 lead in the first 12 minutes — Curry outscored the Hawks by himself — and the defending NBA champions won for only the fourth time in 10 games.Playing for the second time since missing 11 games with a groin injury, Curry hit his first six shots, four of them beyond the arc . He finished 6 of 10 from 3-point rangeThe Warriors led 61-47 at halftime and stretched the margin as high as 24 points, sending the rebuilding Hawks to their third straight loss.John Collins led Atlanta with 24 points, and Trae Young added 20.But it was a tough night for Young, the rookie guard who the Hawks are hoping to turn into their Curry-like centerpiece. He had seven turnovers and missed all five of his 3-point attempts.TIP-INSWarriors: Improved to 31-3 when Curry, Thompson and Durant all reach 20 points. … Golden State has won nine in a row over the Hawks, including four straight in Atlanta. … Thompson has scored at least 20 points in nine straight games, the longest streak of his career. … Kevon Looney scored a season-high 14 points . … Quinn Cook picked up five fouls in only 11 minutes.Hawks: Jeremy Lin scored 14 points and converted a couple of three-point plays after drawing fouls on drives to the basket … DeAndre’ Bembry didn’t have much luck trying to guard Durant, picking up four fouls. … Atlanta had 18 turnovers and went 5 of 26 from outside the 3-point stripe.UP NEXTWarriors: Continue their longest road trip of the season at Cleveland on Wednesday.Hawks: Host the Washington Wizards on Wednesday.___Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pnewberry1963 . His work can be found at https://apnews.com/search/paul%20newberry___For more AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_SportsPaul Newberry, The Associated Press
When Derrick Rose, the Chicago Bulls’ dervish of a point guard, went down in the 11th game this season, it was the 2012-2013 season all over again. Rose sat out that entire season recovering from a torn ACL and watched his team finish 45-37 and put up a fight against the Miami Heat in the second round of the playoffs. This season was supposed to be different — and now it wasn’t going to be at all.Something else wasn’t different: The Bulls managed to finish above .500 without Rose yet again. That was for a whole host of reasons: the remarkable play of center Joakim Noah, the stellar coaching of Tom Thibodeau and an Eastern conference filled with chum, among others. But Chicago’s record this year also indicates that an injury — even of a star player — doesn’t always ruin a team’s regular season as much as we think it might. Sometimes the replacements are better than replacement level. And sometimes they just don’t swing that many games.The Bulls’ record without Rose is just one anecdote, but this was a busy year for injuries in the NBA. Together, the league’s athletes missed more than 4,900 games to injury, the highest total since the 2008-09 season. Eighteen teams saw more games missed due to player injury than the prior season.For the last two years, I’ve kept a database of every injury in the NBA — what the injury was, who suffered it, how many games he missed, etc. (Odd hobby, I know, but this is what happens when you’re an injury analyst.) The database includes every game missed since the 2008-09 season and includes more than 850 players. After watching such an entertaining yet injury-riddled season this year, I started wondering if that database could tell us whether and how the results would have changed if every player in the league had stayed healthy. Like, really healthy. So healthy that there wasn’t a single injury. Who makes the playoffs then?To create this alternate universe, I put my database to work, simulating an entire season in which games missed because of injury were excluded.1Games missed for personal reasons or suspensions were retained. That meant approximating who took the place of the injured players, using injury listings and minute distributions2I went through every team and tabulated each player’s starter minutes versus bench minutes, and how those minutes changed after injury, when I could. to calculate a total number of minutes played for each player on a team’s roster. An important note: My method only tabulates when players play or don’t play; it doesn’t try to understand how a player’s value is affected if he’s playing through an injury.Then, with FiveThirtyEight’s help, I assigned each player a talent rating using Daniel Myers’s ASPM, a box-score-based performance metric that does the best job of telling us how hypothetical universes play out.3The FiveThirtyEight crew used an ASPM aging curve and came up with “talent” ratings for each player based on an age-adjusted weighted average of his performance this season and over the previous two seasons. Once we weighted those talent ratings by the estimate of minutes played, we had a sense of how good each team would be with all of its players. From there, we simulated a whole new season using the 2013-14 NBA schedule, and compared the injury-free hypothetical reality to the actual season.All that left us with what could have been, but almost certainly can never be. As you read the divisional breakdowns below, it’s important to remember that this alternate reality is not a glimpse into how a team would have improved or regressed if it never had to play a replacement player. Instead, it’s a holistic portrait of what would have happened to an entire league if no player missed time due to injury. You’ll see that some teams have worse records in the injury-free space (the New York Knicks, the Detroit Pistons, etc.), which might make you think their replacements were in fact better than their starters, even if the starters were healthy. But it’s really because in our alternate reality these teams don’t improve as much as other teams in the league, leading to more losses against full-strength opponents.With all that preamble out of the way, here’s what an injury-free league looks like in each division, and in the overall playoff picture.Eastern ConferenceIt’s easier to make a surprising run to the top of your division when you’re the healthiest team in the league, as the Toronto Raptors were this season. If the Brooklyn Nets’ center Brook Lopez hadn’t fractured his right foot’s fifth metatarsal and forwards Kevin Garnett and Andrei Kirilenko hadn’t succumbed to back spasms that cost them a combined 45 games, the simulation predicts a healthy Nets team would have flirted with 50 wins. That increases their win total by four games, placing them first in the division. In real life, injuries overextended the minutes of veterans Garnett and Paul Pierce and increased the responsibilities of role players like Reggie Evans and Mirza Teletovic.Not even a clean bill of health rescues the other teams in the division. The New York Knicks get worse in our alternate reality, not helped by their power forward Andrea Bargnani making up the 40 games he missed. Same for the Boston Celtics and their point guard Rajon Rondo. And the Philadelphia 76ers are hopeless no matter what: Rookie Nerlens Noel4In our simulation, rookies who never played were assigned league-average quality ratings. and shooting guard Jason Richardson, along with several other players, aren’t enough to keep them from finishing with the league’s second-worst record.Not even a healthy Derrick Rose stops the Indiana Pacers’ march to the top of the Central Division. The Bulls’ worse record in our alternate universe doesn’t mean the Bulls would be worse with Rose, but more likely that the rest of the league gets even more of a full-strength bump than Chicago does, leading to 1.6 more losses for the Bulls.The biggest drop in the division comes for the Detroit Pistons, who were the 11th-healthiest team in the league, with players missing 128 games overall. Despite their health, the Pistons still couldn’t win 30 games, and they fare even worse once the rest of the league is healthy, losing 3.5 more games in the simulation. The Milwaukee Bucks were the Eastern Conference team most handicapped by injury this season, with their players missing 318 games, but they gain only an extra 2.7 wins in the simulation. That suggests their roster was never that competitive to begin with. And Cleveland, despite adding 31 games from shooting guard C.J. Miles in the simulation, only records a slight uptick, winning a bit more than an extra game.The Southeast remains the most competitive division in the Eastern Conference when injuries are excluded, but with an even denser grouping among its middle three teams. The team at the top of the division, the Miami Heat, distances itself thanks in part to a healthy Dwyane Wade. Wade’s 28 recovered games help net Miami 4.2 more wins, propelling the Heat to the top of the division and the conference.The middle three teams — Washington, Atlanta, and Charlotte — all clump together, with Atlanta winning an extra game thanks in part to a boost from the return of center Al Horford (53 games missed). Washington and Charlotte, meanwhile, dip. A never-absent Nene doesn’t help Washington much, since in reality the Wizards went 12-9 during the 21 games he wasn’t on the court. Charlotte was the team that most took advantage of an injury-filled NBA, finishing 5.8 wins above its record in the injury-free reality, so some regression to the mean is expected. And the Magic, well, the Magic aren’t notable in either reality.Western ConferenceThe San Antonio Spurs remain the best team in the league, but with a franchise-record breaking 65.7 wins, 3.7 more than they actually had during the regular season. That’s what happens when you get an extra 44 combined games from Tony Parker, Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green.Houston’s five-man starting unit finished ninth in most minutes played together this season, so it’s not surprising that the Rockets are unaffected by an injury-neutral schedule. The majority of Houston’s injuries occurred to bench players, and a few more games from backup center Omer Asik don’t move the needle.Despite an additional 23 games from a healthy Marc Gasol, Memphis’s record drops a bit, with the Grizzlies losing 3.4 more games than they did in reality. Perhaps it’s because the teams they faced during Gasol’s absence were in poor health, including a James Harden-less Rockets squad, a Brooklyn team without Deron Williams, a New Orleans Pelicans team missing Anthony Davis and a Bulls team lacking Rose. Memphis’s play may improve with Gasol in the lineup (the Grizzlies went 10-13 while he was out) but so, too, do the rosters of the teams they face. That drops them below the Dallas Mavericks, who lose ground (2.2 games) but less of it than Memphis. At the bottom of the division, the New Orleans Pelicans gain the second-most games in the league (5.1), with the help of a full season from Anthony Davis, Ryan Anderson and Jrue Holiday, a trio that, in reality, played just 15 games together.At the top of the Northwest Division, the Oklahoma City Thunder only get better, winning 3.6 more games with the help of a healthy Russell Westbrook, who missed 36 games this season. Those extra games help put more distance between the Thunder and the Portland Trail Blazers, who decline as the league gets healthier. Only Indiana’s starters played more minutes together this season than the Blazers’ starting five.The majority of Minnesota’s injuries didn’t occur until the final weeks of the season and didn’t have a major impact on the Timberwolves’ overall finish. But the team directly behind them in the standings can use injuries as a legitimate excuse for failing to meet expectations. Denver lost more than 130 games to three separate ACL tears, including 82 games from starting small forward Danilo Gallinari. Combine those games with Javale McGee’s tibia fracture and it’s easy to see why the Nuggets finished as the NBA team most affected by injuries. They win 5.4 more games in our injury-free utopia.The Utah Jazz are bad in all realities. The team ranked as one of the healthiest in the league, and it seems the Jazz likely picked up a few wins due to other teams’ injuries — wins that fall away in our simulation.The Los Angeles Clippers remain the elite team in the Pacific and improve their record by two wins with an extra 20 games from Chris Paul. Two wins may seem like a small shift for the return of a player as good as Paul, but the Clippers played well without him (earning a .650 winning percentage), blunting the effects of his loss.Like Portland, Golden State’s starting unit remained largely unscathed for most of the year, which knocks 2.4 wins off their total once the rest of the league becomes as healthy as they were. South 350 miles, the Los Angeles Lakers suffered through a nightmare season, losing player after player to injury with Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Pau Gasol (who combined to miss 165 games) and others sitting for significant stretches throughout the year. Yet removing these injuries doesn’t do much for the Lakers’ playoff push. It helps them pass Sacramento in the standings, but they only win 3.7 more games with all their players.The real surprise is in Phoenix, not because the Suns’ record changes much (they gain only 0.1 wins), but because the rest of the league changes just enough that the Suns make the playoffs in an injury-free simulation. The Grizzlies are suddenly left out of the playoff picture, finishing .003 percentage points behind the Mavs for the eighth playoff spot.The Suns are the only team to make the playoffs in the injury-free reality that didn’t in the actual season we just watched. Without injuries, playoff seedings change — it’s Miami, not Indiana that has home court advantage in the East — and as bad as the Eastern Conference was, it’s even worse once the whole league is at full strength. But all in all, very little is different.For the endless talk about how injuries changed the game this season, if the entire league were healthy, the NBA would still look more or less like the NBA as we saw it. It’d just be a bit more entertaining.
Pc Cockle failed to share the proceeds of the coins with farmer under whose fields they were discoveredCredit:East Anglia Daily News A policeman who cheated a farmer out of a share of historic gold coins worth £15,000 found on his land has been sacked.PC David Cockle, 50, had a struck deal with the farmer allowing him to go metal detecting on his fields in return for splitting the proceeds of anything he discovered.But the Norfolk officer reneged on the arrangement after he unearthed up to ten extremely rare Merovingian Tremissis coins dating back to the early 7th century.Cockle failed to tell the landowner about the find and instead sold the French coins to a dealer for £15,000 and kept the entire amount.Cockle admitted stealing ten coins between April 2012 and November 2015 at Ipswich Crown Court last month and is due to be sentenced on March 8.On Monday the Pc was sacked at a misconduct hearing for what Norfolk Chief Constable Simon Bailey described as “one of the grossest breaches of trust” in stealing the coins.Mr Bailey said it was clear Cockle was allowed to use the land to search for treasure “because he was a police officer and the farmer liked the idea of a police officer on his land”.The chief constable added that Cockle had let the force down by keeping the coins and had “most importantly let the farmer down and the wider public”. Cockle also denied three charges of converting criminal property. Prosecutors said that they would not proceed with the charges.A Norfolk Police spokeswoman said Cockle, who was based at Downham Market police station, had been suspended since being charged in May 2016.The spokeswoman said he was “in breach of a contract he had signed with the landowner” to share the proceeds of any find.She added: “The investigation was launched after the Norfolk and Suffolk Anti-Corruption Unit received information from a member of the public and Cockle was arrested in November 2015.” One of the Merovingian Tremissis coins dating back to the early 7th century found by Pc CockleCredit:East Anglia News Service The hearing was told the breaches amounted to gross misconduct with the only appropriate outcome being immediate dismissal.Cockle who did not attend the hearing, expressed his remorse and apologised in a written statement presented by the Police Federation.Ipswich Crown Court was also told that the policeman had also failed to report his find to the Norfolk coroner who would have considered if it was treasure trove.The coins which he sold in three batches over 14 months are believed to have been part of a larger hoard.Similar gold coins were found in the same West Norfolk field by another metal detecting enthusiast who also had permission to be on the land.But unlike Cockle, the other man reported his find to the authorities, enabling it to be declared as treasure trove.Experts said that the two finds taken together potentially made it the largest ever hoard of the type of coins ever found in the UK.Merovingian Tremissis coins were made in Gaul which is now France and other low countries of Europe and are said to be very rare in the UK with only around 100 of them found in modern times.Cockle, who at the time of the offence lived in Wareham, near Downham Market, Norfolk, and has since moved to Leigh, in Lancashire, had initially denied stealing, but changed his plea to guilty on the day that his trial was due to start.Judge Rupert Overbury adjourned sentencing until March 8 for a pre-sentence report, but told the officer that he was considering giving him a suspended prison sentence. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
A frantic search, using tracker dogs and cameras, was launched with Philip Schofield, the ITV presenter and animal lover, offering a £1,000 reward. Blake, a border collie has been found and was returned home, Ms Haywood posted on Facebook. But there is no sign of Bella.He is well and behaving “like nothing has happened”, Ms Haywood said.”The hunt for Bella continues still, with Blake’s help we will bring her home.” Blakethe missing sheepdog has been foundCredit:Newark and Sherwood District Council/PA Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Blake, the missing sheepdog who befriended an orphaned two-day old lamb, has been returned to his home in Nottinghamshire. But Bella, his woolly chum, is still missing. The pair had been inseparable from the day that Bella was adopted from a neighbouring farm by Natalie Haywood, a 22-year old mother of two.They played together and even snoozed together on a family rug. But earlier this month the pair went missing from their home in Perlethorpe, near Mansfield.Bella, who was being bottle-fed when she went missing, was only five weeks old. “I’m desperate for news about them,” said Ms Haywood, when they went missing. “I’m so worried about what might have happened.”
Usually, when a new video game is launched the publisher and developer ensures that there are enough copies available to meet demand. With digital copies, that’s a simple task, but with physical copies it’s a best guess based on the popularity surrounding a specific title.With an MMO publishers need to take a different viewpoint. As each gamer needs to connect to a server to play, there needs to be the server capacity to match the number of copies being sold. Otherwise the game won’t be playable for everyone.EA and BioWare are fully aware of this issue in the build up to the launch of Star Wars: The Old Republic late this year. Demand for the game is going to be huge, but EA is going to disappoint a lot of gamers by limiting the number of copies available on launch day.Regardless of whether you buy a physical or digital copy, once the initial supply has gone, there may be days or even weeks before you will be able to buy the game again.By taking this stance EA can ensure the game’s servers can cope with demand. For example, one million copies made available at launch means server capacity for a million gamers will be in place. EA can then turn on more servers over the following weeks and add more players as copies of the game are made available again.EA isn’t sharing how many copies it will make available at launch, but has already decided on the total. What this means for those desperate to play the game is that you need to pre-order, and do it soon. The longer you leave it, the more chance there is you will have to wait for your copy to be shipped or become available for download.Although EA isn’t sharing launch copy totals, back in February CEO John Riccitiello stated that the game only required 500,000 subscribers to break even. Could that be EA’s initial total? To make available any less would mean operating the game at a loss from day one otherwise.Read more at GameInformer.com
Image: PA Archive/PA Images Saturday 3 Dec 2016, 3:30 PM 17,174 Views Dec 3rd 2016, 3:30 PM 84 Comments Image: PA Archive/PA Images ‘Give Bertie Ahern a break, he’s off doing his gardening’ “If he applies to join Fianna Fáil, I’ll come back to you.” http://jrnl.ie/3118084 Short URL Share Tweet Email FIANNA FÁIL’S JUSTICE spokesperson Jim O’Callaghan says that the issue of Bertie Ahern rejoining the party cannot be addressed because the former Taoiseach hasn’t applied.A meeting of the Dublin Central branch this week unanimously agreed to ask Ahern to rejoin the party he led in government for over a decade.Ahern resigned from the party in March 2012 following the publication of the Mahon tribunal. He stepped down as Taoiseach in 2008 and as a TD in 2011.The tribunal found that he did not truthfully account for payments of IR£165,000 made to accounts connected to him.However, O’Callaghan told RTÉ Radio One’s Saturday With Claire Byrne that the issue was something of media creation, not something the party was focusing on.If we’re going to have coverage of motions passed at Fianna Fáil meetings, we’re going to need a separate radio station and a separate TV station. “In fairness to Bertie Ahern, he has not applied for membership of Fianna Fáil.“Fortunately I don’t have a decision to make in relation to this. If he does apply, it will be considered by the general secretary.“I think the leadership will have to be respected on this issue.”O’Callaghan said that Ahern, who is seen as unlikely to rejoin the party while Micheal Martin is leader, hadn’t sought any attention.“It is unfair on Bertie Ahern to catapult him back into the limelight like this because he hasn’t applied to join Fianna Fáil.Give the man a break, he’s off doing his gardening and he’s entitled to do his gardening.“If he applies to join Fianna Fáil, I’ll come back to you.”Read: Fianna Fáil branch to ask Bertie Ahern to rejoin party By Paul Hosford Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article
L’e-commerce continue de progresser Le bilan 2010 de la Fédération de l’E-commerce et de la Vente à Distance (FEVAD) montre que les dépenses en ligne des Français ne cessent d’augmenter. Les Français apprécient de plus en plus les achats sur le web. C’est l’information principale que l’on peut ressortir du bilan 2010 de la FEVAD, qui a enregistré un nouveau record avec 31 milliards d’euros dépensés en ligne l’an passé, soit 24% de plus qu’en 2009 et ses 25 milliards d’euros. Pour la seule période de Noël, ce sont 6 milliards d’euros qui ont été dépensés sur les sites d’e-commerce.À lire aussiLe World Wide Web a 30 ans : devons-nous nous inquiéter de son évolution ?Les principaux changements concernent la forte augmentation des personnes de 65 ans et plus à faire appel à ce type d’achat puisqu’ils sont 73% de plus par rapport à 2009. En tout, 27,3 millions de Français (+12%) ont fait des achats sur la Toile en 2010. La FEVAD estime que l’e-commerce emploie désormais directement ou indirectement 60.000 personnes dans l’Hexagone. Mais les Français ne sont pas les seuls à privilégier de plus en plus ce type d’achat.Une étude commandée par Kelkoo montre que le phénomène est européen. “De 121 milliards d’euros en 2008, il (l’e-commerce, ndlr) a progressé de 42% à 171,9 milliards l’année dernière sur le vieux continent”, précise le rapport qui voit surtout la barre symbolique des 200 milliards dépassée en 2011. Selon le Centre for Retail Research de Nottingham, ces 200 milliards proviendront principalement du Royaume-Uni (59,42), de l’Allemagne (45,07) et de la France (38,66). Le 26 janvier 2011 à 15:09 • Emmanuel Perrin
L’utérus d’une Suédoise bientôt greffée sur sa fille ?Une femme de 56 ans a accepté de donner son utérus à sa propre fille, infertile. Une première mondiale.La situation est inédite. Eva Ottosson, une Suédoise de 56 ans, a accepté de donner son utérus à sa fille Sara, 25 ans, qui souhaite enfanter. La jeune femme, victime d’une malformation, le syndrome de Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser (MRKH), ne peut pas avoir de bébé. Une maladie qui affecte une personne sur 5.000.Si le don d’organe est devenu relativement fréquent, recevoir l’utérus de sa mère, où l’on a soi-même grandi, est une chose qui n’a jamais été réalisée auparavant. Eva Ottosson a déclaré à la BCC : “Ma fille et moi-même considérons ce sujet de façon rationnelle. Un utérus est un organe comme un autre, comme un rein. Elle en a besoin, j’en ai un, je n’en ai plus besoin et je ne vois aucun problème d’éthique à lui donner le mien”.Si l’opération est un succès, Sara, enseignante résidant à Stockholm, pourrait être inséminée artificiellement avec un embryon créé à partir de ses ovaires et du sperme de son compagnon. Elle pourrait ainsi donner naissance à un nourrisson, qui serait alors porté par le même utérus que celui dans lequel elle s’est développée il y a 25 ans.La césarienne serait inévitable pour cette naissance particulière. Et l’utérus transplanté serait retiré après deux ou trois ans, afin d’éviter toute complication. Une opération plus délicate qu’une greffe du coeur ou du foie À lire aussiUne femme donne naissance à un bébé cyclope en EgypteLa procédure serait plus difficile à réaliser qu’une greffe du foie ou du coeur, et n’a été tentée qu’une seule fois sur un être humain, en 2002 en Arabie Saoudite, entre deux patientes n’ayant aucun lien de parenté. L’opération s’est soldée par un échec. L’utérus avait dû être retiré 99 jours après la transplantation car la patiente avait développé des complications.Le professeur Mats Brännström, spécialiste des transplantations d’organes de l’université suédoise de Gothenburg, explique, cité par L’Express : “Le plus difficile est d’éviter une hémorragie qui pourrait être fatale à la patiente greffée et de s’assurer qu’il y a suffisamment de vaisseaux sanguins capables d’alimenter l’utérus”. Eva et Sara ne sont pas les seules candidates à une telle opération. Selon l’équipe médicale qui travaille sur la greffe d’utérus en Suède, dix “couples” (la plupart des mères avec leur fille) sont à l’étude.Si Sara est éligible, son opération pourrait se dérouler au printemps 2012. Sa mère précise à la BBC : “Il s’agit du seul espoir pour ma fille d’avoir un bébé normalement, et si cela ne marche pas, elle adoptera un enfant”.Le 15 juin 2011 à 15:30 • Emmanuel Perrin
Updated: 7:13 AM Categories: Good Morning San Diego, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter August 7, 2019 KUSI Newsroom KUSI Newsroom, CARLSBAD (KUSI) – The Carlsbad Village Association will host the 21st Annual Art in the Village on Sunday, August 11th from 9 AM to 5 PM in the Carlsbad Village.Artists will present their creativity in areas of oil painting, acrylic, watercolor, charcoal, photography, mixed media, new media, classical and contemporary sculpture and artisans will display jewelry, woodwork, furniture, pottery, hand-painted clothing and accessories.For more information, please visit www.carlsbad-village.com/events/art-in-the-village Carlsbad Village Association hosts 21st Annual Art in the Village Posted: August 7, 2019
NOTE: Read the previous story on the proposed explosives storage plant here.Cowlitz County Commissioner Michael Karnofski will host a public meeting later this month to discuss road concerns associated with a proposed explosives storage plant on Butte Hill Road in Woodland.Karnofski and representatives from the county’s Public Works Department will discuss options to upgrade the steep, winding road and how to pay for such upgrades. The meeting is scheduled for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. March 28 at the Woodland High School commons area, 757 Park Ave.Butte Hill residents are concerned about the safety of trucks carrying ammonium nitrate on the road from a proposed Northwest Energetics-owned explosives storage plant. Residents say an accident on the hill could trigger a forest fire or contaminate Robinson Creek, where they get their water.Audience comments are welcomed at the meeting, Karnofski said. Karnofski plans to invite Northwest Energetics General Manager Ed Coulter. No other county commissioners are expected to attend, Karnofski said.
Now playing: Watch this: See It See at Amazon Tags August’s Pro lock adds smarts, but we’re not sold News • August Smart Lock Pro: $165 is the best price for the best smart lock, with free installation See It 6 Photos $198 Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. August Smart Lock Pro CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Read the August Smart Lock review See at Amazon $229 Save $40 Best Buy Tyler Lizenby/CNET Mentioned Above August Smart Lock Pro (Dark Gray) Apple See it Tyler Lizenby/CNET Read the August Smart Lock Pro review Take a look at CNET’s best smart locks for 2019 and you’ll find two August locks at the top of the list. The August Smart Lock Pro is the pick for best overall smart lock, and the cheaper, simpler August Smart Lock is the best for apartment dwellers. Both locks are reliable and easy to install — and both can currently be had at a steep discount on Amazon. Let’s take a look at these two smart-lock deals.Update, 12:52 p.m. PT: Soon after we posted this story earlier today, the prices increased on Amazon. Moreover, the first product offers a 20% off coupon code for some (but not all) users. See the listings below for full details. Bottom line: You may still get a discount from the regular price, but it may be less of a deal than what was available earlier today.Note CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. $198 1:21 See It Save up to $109 Review • August’s Smart Lock Pro does it all — really Comment Smart Locks $279 August Smart Lock Pro and Connect bundle: $171-$214 August adds Z-Wave to its new Smart Lock Pro Preview • Don’t expect to see August’s Z-Wave smart lock in stores This Pro bundle includes August’s third-generation smart lock and the Connect Wi-Fi module that lets you control the lock outside of Bluetooth range. The lock also features DoorSense, which tells you whether your door is open or closed. It supports Z-Wave (hub not included) and also works with Amazon Alexa speakers, Google Home, Apple HomeKit and Nest.As noted above, this bundle was $162 when we posted it earlier ($118 off). It’s now listed as $214 ($66 off), but some CNET staffers are getting a 20% off coupon on the page, bringing the final price to about $171 ($109 off). 1 August Smart Lock and Connect bundle: $180 August Amazon Walmart Share your voice This simpler, non-Pro bundle includes August’s third-generation smart lock and the Connect Wi-Fi module. It also features DoorSense like the Pro version, so you can check if your door is open or closed. It works with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and Nest but doesn’t support Z-Wave or Apple HomeKit. It’s great for renters because the low-profile design means you won’t need to replace your deadbolt.As noted above, this bundle was selling for $139 (an $80 savings) when first posted, but it’s now showing as $180 (a $40 savings). That’s the price that it’s often (but not always) sold at on Amazon.
Al OrtizNHTSA workers check the car of Houston resident who decided to drop by their community event.Workers from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, NHTSA, visited the Houston area, specifically Katy, as part of the agency’s Safe Cars Save Lives bus tour.Staff from the federal agency, as well as representatives from the Texas Department of Transportation and the Texas Children’s Hospital, provided information about topics like tire inflation and heatstroke prevention.Congressman Pete Olson, who represents Texas’ 22nd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, was also present to support the initiative.Safety checks for vehicle recalls were a main feature of the event, particularly because of the still ongoing recall of Takata airbags.Even though the Takata recall has been on the news for more than a year, the NHTSA has found that not everyone is aware of it.“We have met too many people that didn’t even know that this was going on. Never received something in the mail and we’re the first time that they’ve heard they have an open recall that needs to be taken care of,” said Doctor Mark Rosekind, the NHTSA Administrator.Caron Solomon was near the area where the NHTSA was holding the event and dropped by.She drives a new car but, even then, she thought it would be a good idea to have it checked. “I wasn’t sure if this car was part of a recall, so I decided ‘Let me come in’ cause it doesn’t make sense to pass something by that could save your life.”The Safe Cars Save Lives bus tour will also visit San Antonio and Fort Worth.The NHTSA has created the website www.safercar.gov, where you can find out whether there are any open recalls for your vehicle. 00:00 /01:15 Share X Listen To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:
Louisville tallied two more runs in the fourth. Newman reached on an error, stole second and eventually crossed the plate on a wild pitch. Melton singled and scored on Hensley’s triple to increase the lead to 10-2. Georgia Tech added another run in the third behind Drew Puckett’s RBI single. Story Links LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Due to continued rain in the forecast, the University of Louisville softball team’s ACC series opener against Georgia Tech was halted in the top of the fifth inning with the Cardinals leading 10-5. A decision on a time for the continuation of the game will be made Saturday morning. Cameron Stanford’s two-run homer in the fourth cut the lead in half and made the score 10-5. Print Friendly Version The Cards used eight hits and an error to put up an eight-spot in the home half of the first. Seniors Sidney Melton and Megan Hensley delivered back-to-back hits and freshman Taylor Roby walked to set up junior Caitlin Ferguson who smacked a three-run double to left centerfield. RBI singles by Kyra Snyder, Maddy Newman, Celene Funke and Melton brought the score to 8-2. Prior to the rain delay, the Cardinals built an 8-2 lead in the first inning and added a pair of runs in the third. Tech added a run in the third and two more in the fourth, bringing the score to 10-5 after four complete innings. In the fifth, Skye Webb singled and Bailee Zeitler was hit by a pitch. Both runners advanced on a wild pitch with Drew Puckett at the plate when the game was delayed several times before being halted due to continuous rain. Partial game recap:The Yellow Jackets struck early with two runs in the first after a pair of walks and a groundout led to a two-run single by
Journal information: Nature Nanotechnology More information: Kyu Hun Kim, et al. “Graphene coating makes carbon nanotube aerogels superelastic and resistant to fatigue.” Nature Nanotechnology. Advance Online Publication. DOI: 10.1038/NNANO.2012.118 As compression increases in this sequence of images, the graphene-coated nanotubes undergo increasing alignment, strengthening the aerogel. Image credit: Kim, et al. ©2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited To overcome this inelasticity problem, the researchers demonstrated that one to five layers of graphene coating enables a CNT aerogel to withstand more than 1 million compressive cycles and return to its original shape after compression release. The ability to withstand this compression turns the aerogels into superelastic materials, while at the same time allowing them to maintain their other properties such as porosity and conductivity.The researchers think that the graphene coating imparts this superelasticity to the aerogel by strengthening the aerogel’s nodes and struts, both of which support the aerogel’s network structure. In non-coated aerogels, the struts can bend and freely rotate about the nodes when compressed, which increases the contact area between nanotubes and forms new nodes. When the load is removed, the new nodes remain since more force is required to remove the nodes than to form them. Citation: Graphene coating transforms fragile aerogels into superelastic materials (2012, August 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-08-graphene-coating-fragile-aerogels-superelastic.html In contrast, the stronger struts in graphene-coated aerogels cannot easily rotate about the nodes when compressed. Although new nodes are formed in the coated aerogels as well, the graphene coating can remove these nodes when the load is removed.“Both CNT aerogels and graphene-coated CNT aerogels form ‘new’ nodes when compressed,” Islam explained. “We think that the graphene at the nodes gets compressed and crumpled when the graphene-coated aerogels are compressed. When the load is removed, nanotube aerogels do not recover original shape because there is no restorative force to ‘break’ the new nodes that formed during compression. In contrast, the compressed and crumpled graphene flakes provide the restorative force (i.e., act as springs) that is needed to break these new nodes in graphene-coated aerogels.”CNT aerogels that can undergo high levels of compression and later spring back to their original shapes could open the doors to new aerogel applications. CNT aerogels already have attractive features, such as the inherent flexibility of aerogel synthesis that allows researchers to control their shapes and sizes, and superelasticity makes these materials even more attractive.“CNT aerogels, particularly single-walled carbon nanotube (SWCNT) aerogels, have a high surface area, are electrically conducting, have large pores, and have fairly good thermal dissipation properties if you consider that the amount of material in them is really small,” Islam said, adding that his team has recently published papers on the aerogels’ heat transport properties and a surface area close to the theoretical limit. “Because of their properties, CNT aerogels can be used as a scaffold to make composites, sieves, ultralight heat sinks in high gravity applications, electrodes, and catalyst supports. Typically, nanotubes are incompatible with polymers and tend to phase-segregate. By using aerogels as a scaffold and backfilling with polymer, nanotubes can remain well-dispersed in the polymer matrix. This can significantly improve mechanical enhancement.”The researchers are currently investigating other areas of CNT aerogels, in addition to superelasticity.“We are currently working on a few projects,” he said. “We are using SWCNT aerogels to make electrically conducting composites. We are also looking into making mechanically strong polymer composites. With our collaborators, we are exploring the electrochemical properties of SWCNT aerogels. We are growing metal nanoparticles on these SWCNT aerogels for use as filters for remediation of harmful chemicals from water. Also we are using them as porous 3D conducting substrates for tissue growth.“I think the modulus and strength of these nanotube aerogels need to be improved without decreasing the porosity. As you can imagine, the aerogels can be made significantly stronger by just increasing the volume fraction of nanotubes in them but this will reduce the porosity.” Explore further Copyright 2012 Phys.org All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Penn Physicists Develop a Carbon Nanotube Aeroegel Optimizing Strength, Shape and Conductivity After CNT aerogels are compressed and released, the non-coated aerogel collapses while the graphene-coated aerogel recovers its original shape. Image credit: Kim, et al. ©2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited The researchers, Kyu Hun Kim, Youngseok Oh, and Mohammad F. Islam at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, have published their paper on the mechanical benefits of a graphene coating on CNT aerogels in a recent issue of Nature Nanotechnology.”We demonstrate the transformation of a nanotube network from fragile to superelastic simply via ‘nanocoating,’” Islam told Phys.org. “Typically, coating adds corrosion resistance, lubrication, aesthetics, alteration of surface chemistry, sealing, etc., but not mechanical property change.”While a normal gel consists mostly of liquid material with a cross-linked network that gives it its solid-like structure, an aerogel is created by replacing the liquid material in a gel with a gas. Researchers do this by drying the original gel at a critical temperature. The resulting aerogel is a lightweight material made of 99.9% air by volume, yet one that is also dry, rigid, and strong like a solid.In the current study, the researchers worked with CNT aerogels, which (in addition to the air) are made of dispersed nanotubes about 1 micrometer long. CNT aerogels hold their shape due to molecular interactions at the nodes, the points where the nanotubes cross each other. However, when these aerogels are compressed by up to 90% of their original size, they collapse or become permanently deformed, limiting potential applications. (Phys.org) — Like donning a Superman’s cape, fragile carbon nanotube (CNT) aerogels that are covered by a graphene coating can be transformed from a material that easily collapses under compression to one that can resist large amounts of compression and completely recover its original shape after removal of the load. The superelasticity and fatigue resistance provided by the graphene coating could make CNT aerogels useful in a variety of areas, including as electrodes, artificial muscles, and other mechanical structures. 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.
April 22, 2014 — ETIAM Integrate Solution or EIS is a universal content integration system that allows physicians and healthcare professionals to store and incorporate patient images and multimedia examinations within the healthcare enterprise. “The solution,” said George Hunt, VP of Sales, “is really a comprised suite of intricate software modules that we have developed over the years. Until now, we have not been able to pinpoint a full scale, single product that would allow healthcare administrators to get the most out of their imaging enterprise.”The solution is built upon ETIAM’s years of experience in healthcare connectivity and delivers a comprehensive integration engine for multimedia data produced throughout the healthcare enterprise. Image intensive departments have relied on ETIAM Integrate to provide physicians, professionals and educators control of images, video, sound and documents to share with colleagues and for training and for use in seminars and presentations.ETIAM Integrate provides the means to improve workflow and quality of care in the operating room and in other clinical areas. ETIAM Integrate allows data interchange between clinical system components, the “image-centric” PACS (picture archive and communications system), hospital information systems and the electronic medical record (EMR), and provides benefits such as:Compliance with regulatory standards and healthcare best practices such as HIPAA mandates to secure and monitor access to patient information.A technology used to image-enable EMRs and which supports open industry standards such as digital imaging and communications in medicine (DICOM), HL7 and Integrating the Health Enterprise (IHE).A central repository for multimedia data from multiple sources and systems, accepting and cleansing all variations of digital format, and providing the EMR with normalized data forms they can view.Messaging for ordering examinations, sending results, and updating patient demographic information.A scalable system and strategy to accommodate all multimedia and image types and rapid growth in data size and in the number of users over time. Technology | April 22, 2014 ETIAM Revolutionizes Medical Imaging With New EIS Solution The new ETIAM Integrate Solution is a valuable tool for healthcare administrators, clinicians Sponsored Content | Case Study | Enterprise Imaging | July 02, 2019 Reducing Complexity and Cost at CarolinaEast Health System — A Transformative Approach Quality care matters deeply to CarolinaEast Health Syst… read more Building the Right Team for Success in the Consolidated Enterprise – Part 2Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 9:52Loaded: 1.65%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -9:52 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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News | Enterprise Imaging | June 27, 2019 Ambra Health Announces Integration With Box Ambra Health announced an integration with Box to enable the sharing of medical imaging directly from within Box’s… read more News | PACS | July 02, 2019 Laurel Bridge and 3M M*Modal Partner to Improve DICOM Structured Reporting July 2, 2019 — Laurel Bridge Software announced an expanded relationship with 3M M*Modal, a provider of clinical docu read more Technology | Enterprise Imaging | July 05, 2019 Hyland Healthcare Adds ImageNext Imaging Workflow Optimizer to Enterprise Imaging Suite Hyland Healthcare is launching ImageNext, a vendor-neutral imaging workflow optimizer that combines intelligent imaging… read more News | Enterprise Imaging | July 29, 2019 Philips Announces 10-year Enterprise Informatics Agreement With Centre Hospitalier Régional Universitaire de Nancy Philips and Centre Hospitalier Régional Universitaire (CHRU) de Nancy, a leading academic hospital in the Grand Est… read more Related Content Videos | Enterprise Imaging | July 08, 2019 VIDEO: Building the Right Team for Enterprise Imaging Success — Part 1 ITN Associate Editor Jeff Zagoudis speaks with Don Dennison read more Video Player is loading.Building the Right Team for Enterprise Imaging Success – Part 1Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 8:44Loaded: 1.86%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -8:44 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 Videos | Enterprise Imaging | July 09, 2019 VIDEO: Building the Right Team for Enterprise Imaging Success — Part 2 ITN Associate Editor Jeff Zagoudis speaks with Don Dennison read more CarolinaEast Health System News | PACS | August 08, 2019 NetDirector Launches Cloud-based PDF to DICOM Conversion Service NetDirector, a cloud-based data exchange and integration platform, has diversified their radiology automation options… read more Technology | Cybersecurity | August 07, 2019 ScImage Introduces PICOM ModalityGuard for Cybersecurity ScImage Inc. is bridging the gap between security and functionality with the introduction of the PICOM ModalityGuard…. read more News | PACS | August 09, 2019 Lake Medical Imaging Selects Infinitt for Multi-site RIS/PACS Infinitt North America will be implementing Infinitt RIS (radiology information system)/PACS (picture archiving and… read more
Posted by USA Discovery Program offers online training for all things U.S. << Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: Brand USA, Travelweek Learning Centre Share Travelweek Group WASHINGTON — Brand USA says its online training tool was designed to inspire and help the travel industry “sell the U.S. like never before”.Using the online agent training platform, known as the USA Discovery Program, agents can work to become a Regional Experts and earn special badges, as well as bespoke partner badges.Unique features of the program include MegaFam integration, live events and webinars, and peer-to-peer learning, says Suzy Shepard Durini, Senior Manager, Global Trade Development for Brand USA.The site can be accessed at usadiscoveryprogram.com.Brand USA says the online learning environment allows agents “complete flexibility throughout the course, learning in their own time, at their own pace.” The program offers dozens of badges, covering everything from Locations, to Specialist Experiences (Winter Sports, Big City Buzz, Great Outdoors and many more). There are also ‘Extra Learning’ badges for agents who want to dive deep into a city, state or region.The social side of the platform also benefits agents. The USA Discovery Program’s social functionality integrates with Facebook and Twitter, as well as being an online forum where agents can become part of a community, sharing knowledge, asking questions and interacting with their peers.Members also get access to live events and webinars with partners direct from the USA, from video training sessions to live Q&As.Other perks include event invitations, roadshows and opportunities to participate in fam trips to the U.S., such as the Brand USA Megafam.For more details see usadiscoveryprogram.com. Thursday, April 11, 2019