Eskom represents nine SA science boffins

first_imgAnika Meyer (F)GautengThe project aimed to determine if the roots, seeds and pollen of cycads (commonly referred to as “living fossils”because they date back to the age of dinosaurs) contain the neurotoxin methyl-amino-L-alanine (BMAA). Through aseries of tests and analyses, the investigation found the presence of this toxin in the coralloid roots, seeds andespecially the pollen of cycads may be very hazardous to our health if these are airborne inhaled over many years. Bianka Reyneke (F)Free StateThe project sought to determine whether there is a link between the visual motor abilities of learners in pre-schooland school performance later at high school, specifically in subjects like mathematics and science. The results of thestudy showed that the higher the perceptual motor abilities in learners at an earlier age, the higher the chance thatthese learners would have less difficulty with maths and science later on in their school careers. RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR AFD and Eskom commit to a competitive electricity sector Lawrence John van Staden (M)KwaZulu- NatalThe project aimed to determine if a viable home-made nano-based symmetric double layer supercapacitator (SDLS)can drive an inductive load (motor) after a quick charge at a low voltage for a number of charge-discharge cycles.According to the results, the tested SDLS could drive the motor longer than the charging time for severalcharge-discharge cycles, proving the hypothesis correct. Katinka Wilkinson (F)Western CapeThe project researched the different methods of energy storage that could be used to replace a battery. A flywheelenergy storage system utilising rotational kinetic energy was identified as the most promising candidate. The prototypewas found to have relatively high efficiency. Tests showed that the device could deliver more than 80% of the storedkinetic energy into the resistor load. Reinier Scherman (M) and  Berno Myburg (M)GautengThe project aimed to address forklift manoeuvrability (in storage warehouses) through a modified drive system toincrease efficiency. A prototype drive system was developed that can not only turn on point (which is not possiblewith conventional forklift drive systems) and has the capability to change the vehicle’s position while maintaining thesame orientation. Tungsten lamp with a bokeh This month nine of South Africa’s brightest young scientists represented the country at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in Los Angeles, California, USA.The nine learners are top achievers handpicked by some of the country’s top industry judges and experts at the 36th annual Eskom Expo for Young Scientists International Science Fair (ISF) in October last year. Read more…Eskom behind innovationAccording to the South African power utility, the young scientists competed alongside more than 1,700 learners from over 70 countries and regions for over $4 million in awards.These include scholarships, high-end laptops, 3 grand prizes of $50,000 and the top award of $75,000.Time is set aside for the learners to experience the host city for various tours and activities. As with the Eskom Expo, a significant component of the programme at Intel ISEF is social, as learners interact with each other during mixers and ceremonies.Throughout much of the week, various seminars are also held for students, mentors and teachers.Below are details of the learners and their projects: Previous articleNigeria: Lagos secures independent power plantNext articleProtected: Conference proceedings 2017: Generation Ashley TheronAshley Theron-Ord is based in Cape Town, South Africa at Clarion Events-Africa. She is the Senior Content Producer across media brands including ESI Africa, Smart Energy International, Power Engineering International and Mining Review Africa. Finance and Policy Zamazimba Madi   (F)  and Jacqueline Janse van Rensburg (F)GautengThe project aimed to show the impact of high pollution levels on bacterial diversity using three dams in the Gautengregion as a testing ground. The results found that bacterial diversity in these is inversely proportional to pollutionlevels which may lead to potentially pathogenic bacteria outcompeting more benign phylotypes (an environmentalDNA sequence or group of sequences). Featured image: 123rf Name/sProvinceProject Farah  Shaik (F)KwaZulu- NatalThe project aimed to show the decreasing efficacy of sunscreen and to develop a novel product that would indicatethis using the principle of photochromism. The application of this formulation may protect individuals from the harmfulconsequences of excessive sun exposure by alerting them as the sunscreen wears off. Low carbon, solar future could increase jobs in the future – SAPVIA BRICS Parthy Chetty, Executive Director of the Eskom Expo for Young Scientists, said: “To represent South Africa on the world stage is a tremendous honour and privilege and our nine young scientists are well-deserving of this honour because they were our exceptional achievers last year.“Their projects were selected because of how internationally competitive they are, therefore there is no doubt in my mind that they will return home with top honours.”Thava Govender, Eskom Group Executive: Transmission and Acting Group Executive Sustainability & Risk, said: “Eskom is a world class energy provider and is proud to be the driving force behind the Eskom Expo for young scientists, which provides this fantastic platform for budding young scientists to thrive.“The international competitiveness of our country lies in the hands of young scientists and innovators like these delegates going to compete in Los Angeles, USA.” Read more… Generation UNDP China, CCIEE launch report to facilitate low-carbon developmentlast_img read more

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DNA testing exonerates dead man in Florida woman’s murder 36 years later

first_imgJack Harold Jones (L) and Ronald Henry Stewart (R) in undated photos. (Arkansas Department of Corrections/Florida Department of Corrections) (FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.) — Prosecutors in Florida are asking for a dead man’s murder conviction to be vacated after DNA testing showed he was wrongly convicted.The Broward State Attorney’s Office filed a motion to exonerate Ronald Stewart for the murder of Regina Harrison, it said in a statement released on Thursday. Harrison was killed on May 2, 1983, just two days after her 20th birthday. Stewart, who had previously been sentenced to three concurrent 50-year prison terms for other crimes, including rape and burglary, pled no contest to the murder and was subsequently sentenced to 50 years in prison, according to court records. Stewart died while incarcerated on Sept. 11, 2008.Ten years later, the reinvestigation into Harrison’s murder began when a written confession was handed over to law enforcement by the sister of Jack Harold Jones, a convicted murderer and rapist who was executed a year earlier by the state of Arkansas for the 1995 killing of Mary Phillips, 34.Jones’ sister said he had instructed her not to open the letter, which was written in 2006 or 2007, until one year after his execution.In the letter, a copy of which has been obtained by ABC News, Jones appears to confess to the murder of a young woman who meets the description of Harrison in detail.“I met her riding bikes,” the letter said. “We went to the beach, rode around down there, and came back up Sheridan and into the park. That’s where it happened.”The letter prompted the Broward Sheriff’s Office to run the DNA collected from Harrison’s body in the national DNA database. The test revealed the DNA collected from Harrison’s body originated not from Stewart but from Jones, according to the motion.DNA testing, which was not available in 1983 when Harrison was murdered, has exonerated more than 350 innocent people in the United States, according to the Innocence Project, an organization that uses DNA testing to help exonerate wrongly convicted people.“Ronald Stewart would not have been charged with murder if DNA testing had been available at the time and he would not have been prosecuted for the murder if DNA testing had been available at the time,” the Broward State Attorney’s Office statement reads.For Harrison’s family, though, the news of his wrongful conviction came too late and it has forced them to relive the pain of their lost loved one.“In a practical sense, this doesn’t affect anybody that’s alive today. We got two bad guys and they’re both dead,” brother Richard Harrison, 58, told ABC News. “Though Stewart didn’t murder my sister, that didn’t make him any less evil, and that doesn’t make Jones any less dead.”But Richard Harrison, who is an attorney in Florida, also said that he supports the state’s attorney’s effort to correct the record because it helps build trust with the community. He said that he has explained the news to his parents, both of whom are approaching 90 and have health issues. Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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‘We just don’t have answers’: Mystery surrounds killing of 4 people at North Dakota business

first_imgPrathaan/iStock(MANDAN, N.D.) — A North Dakota town was devastated after four people were found mysteriously dead at a local business and police said they were searching for the suspect.A homicide investigation is underway after the bodies were found Monday morning inside RJR Maintenance & Management, a property management company in Mandan, said the Mandan Police Department.Two of the victims, employees Lois Cobb, 45, and William Cobb, 50, were married, Mandan Chief of Police Jason Ziegler said at a news conference on Tuesday. Robert Fakler, 52, the owner, and Adam Fuehrer, 42, another worker, were also among the dead.“We just don’t have answers,” Ziegler told ABC News, adding that no suspects have been identified and no one is in custody.“It’s very unusual for the state of North Dakota. I don’t think any community across this great country could ever imagine something like this happen in their backyard,” he added, calling the crime “devastating” for the community.Ziegler said police do not believe the public is in danger, but he urged the community to remain vigilant.“This was very specific to the victims that were involved,” the chief said. “There was nothing at the crime scene that would lead us it believe that anyone outside the victims involved are in any danger.”The chief called RJR Maintenance & Management a “reputable company in our area.”There were security cameras inside the building but the chief did not say if the crime was on video.No weapons were recovered, he said.Autopsies are being conducted and cause of death will be released by the medical examiner, Ziegler said.As police investigate, Ziegler said, “We’re asking for public assistance. If anyone has any information regarding this crime, please contact the Mandan police.”Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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Assistant/Associate Professor, School of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning

first_imgThe University of Arizona seeks an Assistant/AssociateProfessor, School of Landscape Architecture and UrbanPlanningClick here to view position profile: https://summitsearchsolutions.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/UA_Asst_Assoc_Prof_Landscape_Arch_Profile.pdfLocation: Tucson,Arizona The Position:The School of LandscapeArchitecture and Urban Planning is seeking applicants for a facultyposition at the intersection of landscape architecture and urbandesign. The ideal individual is one who can teach bothundergraduate and graduate design studios at all levels. This is afull-time faculty position at the rank of pre-tenure assistantprofessor or tenured associate professor, commensurate withexperience. The position will ideally begin August 2021. Thesuccessful candidate will have a demonstrated interest in designtheory, collaborative design methods, and urban placemaking. Thisindividual will identify with the artistic side of landscapearchitecture and be fluent in contemporary urban design approachesthat integrate form-making with socio-cultural factors andlandscape ecology. UArizona is especially interested in candidateswho focus on underserved and marginalized communities, and who canenrich its faculty diversity. Duties and Responsibilities:Thesuccessful candidate will be prepared to expand CAPLA’sinterdisciplinary partnerships and work collaboratively within theCollege, University, and external networks in ways that contributeto CAPLA’s strategic goal of Building a Changing World. The Schoolis looking for an innovator who can develop transformativestrategies and future-oriented theories and perspectives onsustainable design, climate mitigation, and urban greeninfrastructure within the context of interdisciplinary practice,artistic approaches, social equity, and heritageconservation. The successful candidate will align their professional directionwith the University’s Strategic Prioritiesthrough: Engagement:Engage students in advanced regionaland international outreach and research in best practices insustainable urban design. Contribute to the development ofinternational programs including Micro Campuses, study abroadprograms, and online courses and programs. Strengthen ties to andpotential student recruitment from underrepresented communities.Develop community outreach opportunities and interdisciplinaryurban design studios. Innovation:Advance research in professionalpractice, landscape urbanism, urban revitalization, greeninfrastructure, site planning, master planning, and adaptive reuseof urban and industrial sites. Create synergies between publicagencies and private industry toward built environmenttechnological innovations and design solutions to address grandchallenges. Partnership: Advance CAPLA’s engagementstrategies with local, regional, and global partnerships. Createindependent and team-taught design studios at all levels withexpertise in data-driven research, predicting change, visioningfuture built environments, urban infrastructure design,collaborative processes, design thinking, and design innovation atthe landscape, neighborhood, and site-specific scales. Advanceinterdisciplinary teaching and practice. Synergy:Strengthen collaboration across CAPLA andUArizona programs in accordance with College and UniversityStrategic Plans including initiatives with the Institute for Placeand Wellbeing, Institute of the Environment, the UArizona Office ofSustainability. The collaborative units will include: College ofFine Arts, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, College ofEngineering, Institute of the Environment, College of Agricultureand Life Sciences, College of Humanities, and College ofEducation. Qualifications:Minimum:Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture or related field ANDat least one professional degree in Landscape Architecture(undergraduate or graduate) from an accredited program.Specialization in best practices in urban design withexperience in landscape ecology, socio-cultural factors in design,and applied art in landscape architecture.Working knowledge of the major digital media software.Strong communication and interpersonalskills. Preferred:Strong background in design theory, urban design, and landscapearchitectural practice.Previous teaching experience, in particular, collaborativeinterdisciplinary teaching or practice.Experience working with diverse and underrepresentedcommunities.Experience in regional and international outreach.A record of peer-reviewed scholarly/creative research (e.g.,publications, competitions, awards) and attracting extramuralfunding. Professional licensure, or qualifications to becomelicensed.Doctoral degree in Landscape Architecture or a relatedfield. About the College of Architecture, Planning &Landscape Architecture:The College of Architecture, Planning,& Landscape Architecture (CAPLA) is made up of two schools,the School of Architecture and the School of Landscape Architectureand Planning; together with the College, it houses 13 academicprograms. Additionally, the Drachman Institutefunctions as the primary outreach arm of the College. At CAPLA, there are innovators of transformational strategies,championing a future-oriented perspective where hands-on design andplanning stimulate sustainable innovation and solve the grandchallenges of the built environment in a daring, authenticenvironment. About the School of Landscape Architecture &Planning:The School of Landscape Architecture and Planning encourages andsupports a culture of innovation in teaching, research, creativeworks, as well as community engagement aimed at advancingprofessional practice and preparing students to be leaders in theirrespective fields. Creative thinking and collaborative learning are encouraged inall of the programs through interdisciplinary coursework andreal-world projects. Graduates are able to integrate scientificknowledge with resourceful innovation to achieve outcomes thatdemonstrate best practices for the development of healthful,livable, and meaningful places. The landscape architecture program includes a fully accreditedgraduate MLA degree program and a newly formed BLA program.UArizona takes pride in the friendly, collegial atmosphere and anextraordinary community of designers and urban planners in CAPLA,including programs in architecture, landscape architecture, urbanplanning, real estate development, sustainable built environments,and heritage conservation. A setting in the city of Tucson, the Sonoran Desert, and theAmerican Southwest provides a rich cultural heritage and physicalenvironment that is an invaluable laboratory for urban design andlandscape architecture study and practice. The curriculum focuseson preparing students for practice to address pressing challengesat the local/regional/national levels, such as urbanization, socialequity, placemaking, climate resilience (heat/cold,aridity/monsoon), environmental degradation, and growth. The School’s facilities are extraordinary. The studios arebright and airy with spectacular views of the Santa CatalinaMountains. The award-winning building is situated on the maincampus in Tucson and equipped with state-of-the-art labs (computer,model, materials, etc.), including the Underwood Family SonoranLandscape Laboratory and the SonoranPentapus. About the University ofArizona:Established in 1885, the University of Arizona (UArizona), thestate’s land-grant university, is a member of the prestigiousAssociation of American Universities. Recognized as a globalleader, and classified as a Carnegie R-1, UArizona conducts morethan $687 million in annual research expenditures and is currentlyranked in the top 40 among all public universities surveyed.UArizona produces graduates who are real-world ready through its100% EngagementInitiative. The UArizona is advancing the frontiers ofinterdisciplinary scholarship and entrepreneurial partnerships andbenefits the state with an estimated economic impact of $4.1billion annually. With a total faculty of 3,144, UArizona currentlyenrolls 36,503 undergraduate students in more than 300 majors, inaddition to 10,429 graduate and professional students. Located in the city of Tucson, with a campus size of 392 acres,UArizona offers students a wide range of activities and academicopportunities. This includes three levels of intramural sports andmore than 30 fraternities and sororities, and many other studentorganizations. The Arizona Wildcats NCAA Division I teams competein the Pac-12 Conference. Classified as a highest researchinstitution, UArizona involves both undergraduate and graduatestudents in research projects. The University has a wide range ofgraduate programs, including the Eller College of Management, the James E. Rogers College of Law and a College of Medicine. The University of Arizona values its inclusive climate becauseit knows that diversity in experiences and perspectives is vital toadvancing innovation, critical thinking, solving complex problems,and creating an inclusive academic community. As a Hispanic-servinginstitution, UArizona translates these values into action byseeking individuals who have experience and expertise working withdiverse students, colleagues, and constituencies. Because UArizonaseeks a workforce with a wide range of perspectives andexperiences, it provides equal employment opportunities toapplicants and employees without regard to race, color, religion,sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexualorientation, gender identity, or genetic information. As anEmployer of National Service, it also welcomes alumni ofAmeriCorps, Peace Corps, and other national service programs andothers who will help it advance its Inclusive Excellence initiativeaimed at creating a university that values student, staff andfaculty engagement in addressing issues of diversity andinclusiveness. The University of Arizona demonstrates diversity in every areawith 24 % of graduates being students of color. In fact, thegraduate programs demonstrate exceptional diversity as enrollmentis the most diverse among all public institutions belonging to theAssociation of American Universities. UArizona is ranked #1 in thenumber of PhDs awarded to Native American students and #9 in thenumber of PhDs awarded to Hispanicstudents. To Apply:Confidential review ofapplications will begin immediately and continue until the positionis filled; parties who apply before or by April, 18 2021will be given first consideration. Interested candidatesshould submit a curriculum vitae, cover letter, and work samples(design portfolio). Work samples may also include examples ofstudent work.To apply online, go to: https://theapplicantmanager.com/jobs?pos=su237 For more information or to offer recommendations ornominations:ArasiAdkinsSenior ConsultantSummit SearchSolutions, Inc.Direct: (336) [email protected] At the University of Arizona, we value our inclusive climatebecause we know that diversity in experiences and perspectives isvital to advancing innovation, critical thinking, solving complexproblems, and creating an inclusive academic community. As aHispanic-serving institution, we translate these values into actionby seeking individuals who have experience and expertise workingwith diverse students, colleagues, and constituencies. Because weseek a workforce with a wide range of perspectives and experiences,we provide equal employment opportunities to applicants andemployees without regard to race, color, religion, sex, nationalorigin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, genderidentity, or genetic information. As an Employer of NationalService, we also welcome alumni of AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, andother national service programs and others who will help us advanceour Inclusive Excellence initiative aimed at creating a universitythat values student, staff and faculty engagement in addressingissues of diversity and inclusiveness.last_img read more

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Handball-Planet.com list of TOP 15 women’s transfers for season 2013/2014

first_imgShareTweetShareShareEmailCommentsSummer 2013 will be remembered as one of the most interesting for European handball market. Many great players have changed their teams between the two seasons due many different reasons. Oltchim Valcea bankrupt forced many players to leave one of the best European teams. On the other side, new mega-team ZRK Vardar is born.Handball-Planet.com prepares a list of 15 biggest women’s handball transfers of summer 2013:WOMEN’S TOP 15 HANDBALL TRANSFERS BEFORE SEASON 2013/2014:1. Katarina Bulatovic (Oltchim Valcea – Gyor)2. Andrea Lekic (Gyor – ZRK Vardar)3. Allison Pineau (Oltchim Valcea – ZRK Vardar)4. Christina Neagu (Oltchim Valcea – ZRK Buducnost)5. Alexandrina Barbosa (Oltchim Valcea – Thuringer)6. Camila Dalby (Randers – ZRK Buducnost)7. Tatiana Khmyrova (Dinamo Volgograd – ZRK Vardar)8. Jovanka Radičevic (Gyor – ZRK Vardar)9. Chana Masson ( Randers – Viborg HK)10. Amandine Leynaud (Oltchim Valcea – ZRK Vardar)11. Marija Jovanovic (Oltchim Valcea – Astrahanocka)12. Sanja Damnjanovic (RK Podravka – Viborg HK)13. Oana Manea (Oltchim Valcea – Krim Mercator)14. Miranda Tatari (Podravka – Astrahanocka)15. Paula Ungureanu (Oltchim Valcea – HCM Baia Mare)MEN’S TOP 25 TRANSFERS – SUMMER 2013 Recommended for you Lekic and Arenhart to join RK Krim Mercator ShareTweetShareShareEmail Related Items:Alexandrina Barbosa, Allison Pineau, Amandine Leynaud, Andrea Lekic, Camila Dalby, Chana Masson, Christina Neagu, handball planet, Jovanka Radičević, Katarina Bulatovic, Tatiana Khmyrova, top handball transfers Serious injury of Andrea Lekic Leave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published.Comment Name Email Website Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Is Sander Sagosen ready to break “anathema” of TOP transfer title holders? Click to commentlast_img read more

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Far right surge puts Berlin on edge ahead of election

first_imgThat effect is typically stronger when the projected outcome, as in the case of the German election, is a foregone conclusion.Inevitable MerkelPerhaps the best explanation for the late resurgence of the AfD is the perceived inevitability of another four years of Merkel as chancellor and a sense that no matter whom she governs with, little will change.Even for close observers of Germany’s humdrum election campaign, identifying the policy differences between the big parties can be difficult.That harmony was on full display in the only televised debate between Merkel and Martin Schulz, her Social Democrat challenger, in early September.Some analysts say the encounter was a turning point in the campaign because it shifted the focus to smaller parties.Here too, the AfD appears to have benefited from its outsider image. Of the five parties running against Merkel’s conservatives, three — the SPD, the Greens and Free Democrats — are open to a coalition with the chancellor. “Trust in politics, especially in the CDU, has grown,” Peter Altmaier, Merkel’s chief of staff, said recently.The AfD, meanwhile, stuck to its extremist anti-Merkel, anti-establishment playbook. What appeared to be missteps — such as a private email exchange in which party leader Alice Weidel reportedly attacked Germany’s democratic system and called the ruling political class “pigs”— did little to halt the AfD’s momentum.Mainstream politicians, led by Altmaier, sought to ostracize the party, going as far as to tell Germans it was better not to vote at all than to vote for the AfD. Leading Social Democrats castigated the AfD as “Nazis.”Critics say such attacks have only backfired.“Given the prospect that the AfD could finish third on Sunday, this strategy can only be described as a spectacular failure,“ Jasper von Altenbockum, politics editor at the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, concluded this week, arguing that the insults have only mobilized the AfD’s base.Such last-minute skirmishes notwithstanding, it’s also true that populist parties often strengthen in the final stages of election campaigns. “Everything is possible, from 31 to 43 percent,” Reiner Haseloff, CDU premier in Saxony-Anhalt, reportedly told colleagues this week. Also On POLITICO OPTICS In pictures: Keeping (some) AfD posters just out of reach By Kirsten Kortebein German minister calls far-right AfD’s manifesto unconstitutional By Saim Saeed and Judith Mischke German far-right leader Weidel files lawsuit against journalist By Judith Mischke That means voters ardently opposed to Merkel have only two real options — the leftist Die Linke party and the AfD.A vandalized election campaign billboard that shows German Chancellor Angela Merkel and reads: “Successful for Germany” in Berlin | Sean Gallup/Getty ImagesWhat’s more, when it comes to immigration, an issue polls show is top of mind for many Germans, the AfD is the only party prepared to take a hard line on admitting asylum seekers.The reemergence of the refugee crisis in recent months in the media appears to have bolstered the AfD’s position. Italy’s struggle to cope with an upsurge in arrivals from Africa in the summer renewed fears in Germany that it could face a new wave of migrants traveling north over the Brenner Pass through Austria to the German border.Despite that prospect, Merkel has steadfastly declined to back away from her resistance to setting an upper limit on asylum seekers, a key demand of conservatives in her own camp.For now, Merkel and her strategists can do little but sit and wait for the projections to roll in on Sunday afternoon. The party has been polling in the mid-30s, well below the 41.5 percent it won in 2013.Even senior party officials appear to have little confidence in Sunday’s outcome.center_img BERLIN — The mood in Berlin’s political circles as the hours tick down toward election day might best be described by that ur-German instinct – angst.Even though most of Berlin’s political hacks remain convinced Angela Merkel will win by a comfortable margin in Sunday’s parliamentary election, they’re unnerved by a last-minute surge by the Alternative for Germany (AfD), a far-right party that until a few weeks ago many in the establishment believed had been defanged, at least for the moment.As the campaign winds to a close, all but one of Germany’s leading pollsters project the party will finish in double digits. It scored 12 percent in the benchmark Deutschlandtrend poll last week, for example. Germany’s two biggest parties, Merkel’s Christian Democrats and the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), meanwhile, have suffered slight losses in recent weeks. Though the race for the bronze medal is still too close to call, there’s no denying the AfD is gaining momentum. A third-place finish — behind the Merkel’s conservative bloc and the SPD — could make the AfD Germany’s largest opposition party, bestowing on it a host of privileges, including generous public financing, that would make it a formidable political force.A robust showing by the AfD would also complicate the coalition math for Merkel, possibly narrowing her options to another “grand coalition” with the SPD, an outcome many argue would only further strengthen the AfD.The populist, anti-immigrant movement saw its star rise amid the refugee crisis in 2015. But after Merkel’s government toughened asylum rules and the influx of migrants began to ebb, support for the party weakened.Voters ardently opposed to Merkel have only two real options — the leftist Die Linke party and the AfD.After hitting a high of 16 percent in polls last September, the AfD fell to as low as 8 percent in August. The party was also plagued by infighting, further blunting its appeal.Germany’s centrist parties, especially Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU), had taken comfort in the AfD’s dwindling fortunes for months.last_img read more

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George Clinton Shares Stories About Hiding A Crack Pipe From A Teenage Chelsea Clinton

first_imgNo name is more synonymous with funk music than George Clinton. Having led Parliament-Funkadelic, aka P-Funk, for decades upon decades, Clinton’s psychedelic influences helped to define a genre.Reflecting back on his years of success, Clinton sat down with the New York Post to share stories from his past, in advance of his forthcoming memoir, Brothas Be, Yo Like George, Ain’t That Funkin’ Kinda Hard on You?Clinton talks about his beginnings, playing in a band called The Parliaments, and the merging of that band and Funkadelic to create P-Funk. The article talks about the flamboyant costumes – Clinton says “I actually got freaked out when girls wanted me, because I figured they were weirder than me!” – and on-stage drug use, and even features a quote from Clinton about LSD’s effect on his digestive system. Clinton: “The thing about acid is that it ruins your stomach — it’s acid, after all. We were eating a lot of soul food at the time, too, so basically, we all spent hours in the bathroom and had more hemorrhoids than you could imagine.”The legend opens up about his use of crack-cocaine, unabashedly telling what is easily the best story in the interview: A teenage Chelsea Clinton came backstage after a show and asked for a picture. Startled by the Secret Service, George was forced to conceal a red-hot crack pipe in one hand while shaking the first daughter’s hand with the other. The subsequent picture was printed in People magazine. “You don’t give a f–k when you’re on crack.”Another time, he spent a night in jail with Sly Stone, as the duo were busted for possession in the parking lot of a Denny’s. And while drug use may have taken a toll on him financially – “I was running around and getting high. I didn’t pay enough attention to business” – the artist is still working on new music. He has an album out with Kendrick Lamar, with the same title as his memoir. The memoir is due out today, October 21st.last_img read more

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International Year of Astronomy Kicks Off, Bringing the Universe Down to Earth

first_img Related Story:  The Philadelphia Inquirer outlined upcoming developments in the world of big telescopes, 400 years after Galileo’s first observation, called, 2009 will be a big year for titanic telescopes AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore The National Science Foundation (NSF) has devoted millions of dollars to underwrite IYA 2009 activities and initiatives, such as the Galileoscope Project, an official cornerstone and perhaps the most visible project of IYA 2009, will enable children to experience observation via a sophisticated yet affordable ($10/each) telescope. Working with two of the best optical designers in the world, the Galileoscope creates a true-color corrected view through a high quality eyepiece in a telescope with a baffle design optimized for looking at bright objects like the Moon and planets. “Hands-On Optics” teaching kits are part of a 4-year NSF-sponsored project used by over 20,000 students nationwide, mainly in after-school settings. “400 Years of the Telescope” is an interactive, multimedia project that will enable the public to participate in real and virtual telescope experiences and understand the practical advances that the telescope has made possible. A partnership between PBS, NSF, leading astronomers, and two U.S. planetariums, culminated in a two-hour, high-definition documentary that will air twice on PBS in 2009. And, a full-dome and traditional 30-minute planetarium program will be made available in 12 foreign languages, with free national and international distribution to 750 planetariums throughout the United States. The Great World Wide Star Count, in conjunction with planetariums and scientific societies, will map tens of thousands of observations taken from all seven continents and 60 countries around the world. Watch the IYA 2009 trailer below: AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreA large cluster of astronomers were sighted in Paris last week at the official launch of the International Year of Astronomy. Planned to coincide with the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s first observations of the heavens with a telescope, the year, also known as IYA 2009, will commence under the theme ‘The Universe, Yours to Discover.’ The celebration is meant to reignite the wonder that the starry skies have always provoked in humankind and promote astronomy’s contribution to society, culture and development. “People have always looked to the sky for answers to the questions ‘How did we get here?’ and ‘Why are we here?’” said Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO,  the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. The gala opening at the agency’s headquarters gathered astronauts, artists, diplomats, industrialists and astronomy undergraduates from over 100 countries. “The sky belongs to everybody,” Mr. Matsuura said. “Astronomy is an instrument to promote peace and understanding among nations.” The two-day launch ceremony featured presentations by Nobel prize winners Bob Wilson and Baruch Blumberg, reports of the latest discoveries, discussions on the role of astronomy in culture and public engagement, real-time astronomical observation and a closing performance by the Grammy-winning Kronos Quartet. (See the video trailer announcing IYA2009 at the bottom of this article.) Hundreds of events on the global, national and regional levels have also been planned for the first weeks of the Year in conjunction with the International Astronomical Union (IAU). The website www.astronomy2009.org has all the latest news and activities, along with an email newsletter to keep you up to date with the celebration.last_img read more

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Teachers Visit a Bridge Everyday to Create a Classroom for Children of Migrant Workers Stuck in India’s Lockdown

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreFor months during the pandemic, the people of India woke up to news regarding the plight of migrant laborers.Stranded on their way home due to stringent lockdown restrictions and the lack of basic amenities brought us harrowing tales of human suffering.However, the news also spurred heroes into action. Under the bridge in the coastal state of Kerala, a heartening sight awaits those who are passing by in Kochi.Underneath the Bolgatty-Vallarpadam bridge, teachers can be found engrossed with students of all ages, deep in study.Ten children of migrant laborers had been living under the bridge with their families. Now that temporary ‘home’ is doubling up as a classroom, thanks to the dedicated teachers of St. John Bosco’s UP School.RELATED: No One Came to Student’s Graduation—So His Teacher Took Him Out to Dinner and Bought Him a CarWhen the government ordered schools to close, and classes began commencing online, the teachers realized that some children had no means to attend online classes, and would likely discontinue their education if the situation persisted.Armed with laptops and drawing sets, three teachers—Shamiya Baby, Neema Thomas and Susan Mable—and the school headmistress Elizabeth Fernandez, came to the rescue. Since the beginning of June, when online classes officially began, these teachers have been downloading classes on their laptops and heading over to the bridge to teach the children. ‘They also carry masks, biscuits and sweets for the young kids every day,” reports Mathrubhumi News.POPULAR: People Are Installing Portable Hand-Washing Sinks for the Homeless in Cities Across the USAs technology seeps into the education sector, stories like this serve to underscore the undeniable value of human teachers—and their selfless kindness… Priceless.We applaud our health workers and doctors, but let us also spare a thought for society’s teachers who help keep the lamp of hope brightly lit within the minds and hearts of its youngest citizens.– Edited from an original article submitted by Gayathry Rajeev in India TEACH People Some Kindness By Sharing This Story on Social Media…AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

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