Minister Reiterates Commitment to Take Schools off Shift System

first_img “This will help to prepare in the transition process to a single-shift system. It is important that we do so, because we are not doing so for ourselves, we are doing it for the future and for the transformation of St. James,” the Minister said. Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, has reiterated that urgent steps are being taken by the Government to get schools across Jamaica, such as the St. James High School in Montego Bay, off the two-shift system.Speaking at a ceremony to mark the official opening of a new three-storey block of classrooms at the St. James High School on January 30, Mr. Reid said he is proud that despite the double-shift system, the institution has been performing extremely well.“I am in a hurry under my shift, to fix all of these problems. Yes, I have 42 schools still on shift and, systematically, we are going to take them off one by one,” the Minister said.Senator Reid noted that the Ministry responded quickly when St. James High requested financial support for additional classroom spaces and for the construction of a perimeter wall.“This will help to prepare in the transition process to a single-shift system. It is important that we do so, because we are not doing so for ourselves, we are doing it for the future and for the transformation of St. James,” the Minister said.Meanwhile, Senator Reid said the Ministry will be constructing five new high schools across the island, one of which will be in St. James, which will add significantly to the number of classroom spaces available in western Jamaica.“We have a lot of work to do, but, under God, we are going to get it done. I am getting full support, and I have the fiscal space to get it done,” he said.The Minister also visited Anchovy High School in St. James, and the Knockalva Agricultural School and the Knockalva Technical High School in neighbouring Hanover.Mr. Reid told JIS News that he was happy to have visited the institutions to get a first-hand look at their operations and make assessments and recommendations.“My tour has been extremely successful, and I am very happy to be able to get out of the office to see exactly what is happening in these institutions and to give some policy direction,” he added. Speaking at a ceremony to mark the official opening of a new three-storey block of classrooms at the St. James High School on January 30, Mr. Reid said he is proud that despite the double-shift system, the institution has been performing extremely well. Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, has reiterated that urgent steps are being taken by the Government to get schools across Jamaica, such as the St. James High School in Montego Bay, off the two-shift system. Story Highlightslast_img read more

Mother among 4 held for plotting childs kidnapping

first_imgGhaziabad: Ghaziabad police have arrested four persons including three women for allegedly kidnapping a five-year-old child from Khora area. Cops said that the mother of kidnapped child plotted conspiracy to kidnap him taking advantage of the child lifting rumours as she wanted to flee with her lover.According to police, the arrested persons have been identified as kidnapped child’s mother Zenab, her lover Salman, her friend Komal and Komal’s mother in law Sunita. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderSN Singh, Superintendent of Police, Ghaziabad said that the mother of kidnapped child had left him at komal’s place and asked her to take care of her child for a couple of days. “On August 31, the woman told her friend Komal, who lives in Mayur Vihar area in Delhi, that her husband wants to marry another woman and she is going to stop him so she is leaving her child at her place. However, she came to Indirapuram police station and told police a fake story that a 25-years-old woman has kidnapped her child when she had gone to a market in Nyay Khand-1 area” said Singh. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsThe officer further said that earlier a case of kidnapping was registered but investigations rounded up on the involvement of kidnapped child’s mother into the incident. “Police found nothing relevant to the complaint when we checked the CCTV footage of the area and enquired the locals persons. Police found something to be fishy in the matter and checked the woman’s call records. It came to light that before the incident the woman frequently called a number that belongs to a male. Also the woman’s location was traced in Delhi instead of Nyay Khand at the time which she told police that her child was kidnapped. Police detained the woman for questioning where she broke up and told police that she wanted to get rid of her family as she wanted to marry her lover and tried to take advantage of child lifting rumours,” added Singh. A case has been registered.last_img read more

Kickers Are Forever

In football, there are constant power struggles, both on and off the field: players battling players, offenses battling defenses, the passing game battling the running game, coaches battling coaches, and new ways of thinking battling old ways of thinking. And then there are kickers. Battling no one but themselves and the goalposts, they come on the field in moments most mundane and most decisive. They take all the blame when they fail, and little of the credit when they succeed. Year in and year out, just a little bit at a time, they get better. And better. And better. Until the game is completely different, and no one even noticed that kickers were one of the main reasons why.If you’ve been reading my NFL column Skeptical Football this season, you may have noticed that I write a lot about kickers. This interest has been building for a few years as I’ve watched field goals drained from long range at an ever-increasing rate, culminating in 2013, when NFL kickers made more than 67 percent of the kicks they took from 50-plus yards, giving them a record 96 such makes. There has been a lot of speculation about how kickers suddenly became so good at the long kick, ranging from performance-enhancing drugs (there have been a few possible cases) to the kickers’ special “k-balls” to more kick-friendly stadiums.So prior to the 2014 season, I set out to try to see how recently this improvement had taken place, whether it had been gradual or sudden, and whether it was specific to very long kicks or reflected improvement in kicking accuracy as a whole.What I found fundamentally changed my understanding of the game of football.1And possibly offered insight into how competitive sports can conceal remarkable changes in human capability.The complete(ish) history of NFL kickingPro Football Reference has kicking data broken down by categories (0-19 yards, 20-29, 30-39, 40-59 and 50+ yards) back to 1961. With this we can see how field goal percentage has changed through the years for each range of distances:It doesn’t matter the distance; kicking has been on a steady upward climb. If we look back even further, we can see indicators that kicking has been on a similar trajectory for the entire history of the league.The oldest data that Pro Football Reference has available is from 1932, when the eight teams in the NFL made just six field goals (it’s unknown how many they attempted). That year, kickers missed 37 of 113 extra-point attempts, for a conversion rate of 67.3 percent. The following year, the league moved the goal posts up to the front of the end zone — which led to a whopping 36 made field goals, and a skyrocketing extra-point conversion rate of 79.3 percent. With the uprights at the front of the end zone, kickers missed only 30 of 145 extra points.For comparison, those 30 missed extra-point attempts (all with the goalposts at the front of the end zone) are more than the league’s 28 missed extra-point attempts (all coming from 10 yards further out) from 2011 to 2014 — on 4,939 attempts.In 1938-39, the first year we know the number of regular field goals attempted, NFL kickers made 93 of 235 field-goal tries (39.6 percent) to go with 347 of 422 extra points (82.2 percent). In the ’40s, teams made 40.0 percent of their field goal tries (we don’t know what distances they attempted) and 91.3 percent of their XPs. In the ’50s, those numbers rose to 48.2 percent of all field goals and 94.8 percent of XPs. The ’60s must have seemed like a golden era: Kickers made 56 percent of all field goals (breaking the 50 percent barrier for the first time) and 96.8 percent of their extra points.For comparison, since 2010, NFL kickers have made 61.9 percent of their field goal attempts — from more than 50 yards.In the 1960s, we start to get data on field goal attempts broken down by distance, allowing for the more complete picture above. In 1972, the NFL narrowed the hash marks from 18.5 yards from 40, which improved field goal percentages overall by reducing the number of attempts taken from awkward angles. And then in 1974, the league moved the goal posts to the back of the end zone — but as kick distances are recorded relative to the posts, the main effect of this move was a small (and temporary) decline in the extra-point conversion rate (which you can see in the top line of the chart above). Then we have data on the kicks’ exact distance, plus field and stadium type, after 1993.2This info is likely out there for older kicks as well, but it wasn’t in my data.So let’s combine everything we know: Extra-point attempts and distances prior to 1961, kicks by category from 1961 to 1993, the kicks’ exact distance after 1993, and the changing placement of goal posts and hash marks. Using this data, we can model the likely success of any kick.With those factors held constant, here’s a look at how good NFL kickers have been relative to their set of kicks in any given year3This is done using a binomial probit regression with all the variables, using “year taken” as a categorical variable (meaning it’s not treated like a number, so 1961, 1962 and 1963 may as well be “Joe,” “Bob” and “Nancy”). This is similar to how SRS determines how strong each team is relative to its competition.:When I showed this chart to a friend of mine who’s a philosophy Ph.D.,4Hi, Nate! he said: “It’s like the Hacker Gods got lazy and just set a constant Kicker Improvement parameter throughout the universe.” The great thing about this is that since the improvement in kicking has been almost perfectly linear, we can treat “year” as just another continuous variable, allowing us to generalize the model to any kick in any situation at any point in NFL history.Applying this year-based model to our kicking distance data, we can see just how predictable the improvement in kicking has actually been:The model may give teams too much credit in the early ’60s — an era for which we have a lot less data — but over the course of NFL history it does extremely well (it also predicts back to 1932, not shown). What’s amazing is that, while the model incorporates things like hashmark location and (more recently) field type, virtually all the work is handled by distance and year alone. Ultimately, it’s an extremely (virtually impossibly) accurate model considering how few variables it relies on.5So how accurate is this thing? To be honest, in all my years of building models, I’ve never seen anything like it. The model misses a typical year/distance group prediction by an average of just 2.5 percent. Note that a majority of those predictions involve only a couple hundred observations — at most. For comparison, the standard deviation for 250 observations of a 75 percent event is 2.7 percent. In other words, the model pretty much couldn’t have done any better even if it knew the exact probability of each kick!While there is possibly a smidge of overfitting (there usually is), the risk here is lower than usual, since the vast majority of each prediction is driven solely by year and distance. Here’s the regression output:I wish I could take credit for this, but it really just fell into place. Nerds, perk up: The z-value on “season” is 46.2! If every predictive relationship I looked for were that easy to find, life would be sweet.This isn’t just trivia, it has real-world implications, from tactical (how should you manage the clock knowing your opponent needs only moderate yardage to get into field goal range?) to organizational (maybe a good kicker is worth more than league minimum). And then there’s the big one.Fourth downIf you’re reading this site, there’s a good chance you scream at your television a lot when coaches sheepishly kick or punt instead of going for it on fourth down. This is particularly true in the “dead zone” between roughly the 25- and 40-yard lines, where punts accomplish little and field goals are supposedly too long to be good gambles.I’ve been a card-carrying member of Team Go-For-It since the ’90s. And we were right, back then. With ’90s-quality kickers, settling for field goals in the dead zone was practically criminal. As of 10 years ago — around when these should-we-go-for-it models rose to prominence — we were still right. But a lot has changed in 10 years. Field-goal kicking is now good enough that many previous calculations are outdated. Here’s a comparison between a field-goal kicking curve from 2004 vs. 2014:There’s no one universally agreed-upon system for when you should go for it on fourth down. But a very popular one is The New York Times’ 4th Down Bot, which is powered by models built by Brian Burke — founder of Advanced Football Analytics and a pioneer in the quantitative analysis of football. It calculates the expected value (either in points or win percentages) for every fourth-down play in the NFL, and tweets live results during games. Its 19,000-plus followers are treated to the bot’s particular emphasis on the many, many times coaches fail to go for it on fourth down when they should.A very helpful feature of the 4th Down Bot is that its game logs break down each fourth-down decision into its component parts. This means that we can see exactly what assumptions the bot is making about the success rate of each kick. Comparing those to my model, it looks to me like the bot’s kickers are approximately 2004-quality. (I asked Burke about this, and he agrees that the bot is probably at least a few years behind,6I don’t blame Burke or others for not updating their models based on the last few years. It’s good to be prudent and not assume that temporary shifts one way or the other will hold. Normally it is better to go with the weight of history rather than with recent trends. But in this case, the recent trends are backed by the weight of history. and says that its kicking assumptions are based on a fitted model of the most recent eight years of kicking data.7Here’s his full statement: “The bot is about 3-4 years behind the trends in FG accuracy, which have been improving at longer distances. It uses a kicking model fitted to the average of the recent 8-year period of data. AFA’s more advanced model for team clients is on the current ‘frontier’ of kick probabilities, and can be tuned for specific variables like kicker range, conditions, etc. Please keep in mind the bot is intended to be a good first-cut on the analysis and a demonstration of what is possible with real-time analytics. It’s not intended as the final analysis.”)But more importantly, these breakdowns allow us to essentially recalculate the bot’s recommendations given a different set of assumptions. And the improvement in kicking dramatically changes the calculus of whether to go for it on fourth down in the dead zone. The following table compares “Go or No” charts from the 4th Down Bot as it stands right now, versus how it would look with projected 2015 kickers8The exact values in the chart may differ slightly from the reports on the Times’ website because I had to reverse-engineer the bot’s decision-making process. But basically I’m assuming the model gets everything exactly right as far as expected value from various field locations, chances of converting a fourth-down attempt, etc., then recalculating the final expected value comparison using 2015 kickers.:Having better kickers makes a big difference, as you can see from the blue sea on the left versus the red sea on the right. (The 4th Down Bot’s complete “Go or No” table is on the Times’ website.)Getting these fourth-down calls wrong is potentially a big problem for the model. As a test case, I tried applying the 4th Down Bot’s model to a selection of the most relevant kicks from between 25 and 55 yards in 2013, then looked at what coaches actually did in those scenarios. I graded both against my kicking-adjusted results for 2013. While the updated version still concluded that coaches were too conservative (particularly on fourth-and-short), it found that coaches were (very slightly) making more correct decisions than the 4th Down Bot.The differences were small (coaches beat the bot by only a few points over the entire season), but even being just as successful as the bot would be a drastic result considering how absolutely terrible coaches’ go-for-it strategy has been for decades. In other words, maybe it’s not that NFL coaches were wrong, they were just ahead of their time!Time-traveling kickersHaving such an accurate model also allows us to see the overall impact kicking improvement has had on football. For example, we can calculate how kickers from different eras would have performed on a common set of attempts. In the following chart, we can see how many more or fewer points per game the typical team would have scored if kickers from a different era had taken its kicks (the red line is the actual points per game from field goals that year):The last time kickers were as big a part of the game as they are today, the league had to move the posts back! Since the rule change, the amount of scoring from field goals has increased by more than 2 points per game. A small part of the overall increase (the overall movement of the red line) is a result of taking more field goals, but most of it comes from the improvement in accuracy alone (the width of the “ribbon”).How does this compare to broader scoring trends? As a baseline for comparison, I’ve taken the average points scored in every NFL game since 1961, and then seen how much league scoring deviated from that at any given point in time (the “scoring anomaly”). Then I looked at how much of that anomaly was a result of kicking accuracy.9The scoring deviation on this chart is calculated relative to the average game over the period. The kicking accuracy is relative to the median kicker of the period.:Amid wild fluctuations in scoring, kicking has remained a steady, driving force.For all the talk of West Coast offenses, the invention of the pro formation, the wildcat, 5-wide sets, the rise of the pass-catching tight-end, Bill Walsh, the Greatest Show On Turf, and the general recognition that passing, passing and more passing is the best way to score in football, half the improvement in scoring in the past 50-plus years of NFL history has come solely from field-goal kickers kicking more accurately.10Side note, I’ve also looked at whether kicking improvement has been a result of kickers who are new to the league being better than older kickers, or of older kickers getting better themselves. The answer is both.The past half-century has seen an era of defensive innovation — running roughly from the mid-’60s to the mid-’70s — a chaotic scoring epoch with wild swings until the early ’90s, and then an era of offensive improvement. But the era of kickers is forever.Reuben Fischer-Baum contributed graphics.CORRECTION (Jan. 28, 2:22 p.m.): An earlier version of this article incorrectly gave the distances from which extra-point kicks were taken in 1933 and in recent years. Actual extra-point distances aren’t recorded. read more

Gianfranco Zola sympathises with Eden Hazards frustrations

first_imgChelsea assistant coach Gianfranco Zola claims that even though Eden Hazard may not be known for his industry off the ball, Chelsea still needs him to assist the team.The Belgium winger hasn’t really impressed in all his outing this term after he was deployed by new coach Sarri to play as a false nine.Chelsea defeated Tottenham 2-1 on penalties to reach the EFL Cup final on Thursday with Hazard scoring the Blues’ second goal in a second leg.“I was very much like Eden,” Zola told reporters, according to FourFourTwo.“I was a very positive player, I liked to move around the pitch, find the spots on the pitch where I could receive the ball, turn and make the damage to the opposition.Tammy Abraham, ChelseaChelsea hat-trick hero Tammy Abraham hopes for more Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Tammy Abraham hopes this season will be his big breakthrough at Chelsea after firing his first hat-trick for the club in Saturday’s 5-2 win at Wolves.“I was very, very similar and I do understand that. I believe we try to give him this but also to be an organised team defensively and offensively. Especially offensively. That’s why we ask Eden sometimes to put himself about in working hard.“I know that’s not his best quality. We understand that sometimes he needs to be fresh when he receives the ball. There is no doubt that we are on the same page. We want to find a common ground where he can get the best out of himself and the team can benefit from him.“Not only when he is scoring goals but when we have moments in the game where we need everybody to defend and everybody to press. That’s exactly what we are trying to do. Eden, I think, I have to be fair that he has been doing it.“He has been trying to do it. We are very demanding because we want to do it all the time. I am sure that we will find a compromise. I am not in a position to criticise a player like Eden. We believe, Maurizio said one thing, that the potential of Hazard is greater than the performances.“So he is not criticising what Eden is doing but he believes he can do much more for himself and the team. That’s all he is saying. This is the situation he wants Hazard to understand. Again, when we see his performances we look forward to seeing more and more.”last_img read more

Penton Folds Video Magazine

first_imgPenton Media has folded Digital Content Producer magazine into millimeter, its other video industry magazine. The merger is effective with the April issue.The decision to fold Digital Content Producer into millimeter will “better serve the entire video production industry,” a Penton spokesperson told FOLIO:. No layoffs were associated with the merger, she said.Millimeter’s frequency will increase from bimonthly to monthly and its circulation will jump from 30,000 to 60,000. Digital Content Producer, a monthly, carried a circulation of 57,000. Penton plans to relaunch millimeter’s Web site in July, the company said.last_img read more

NOOK Newsstand Adds More Titles From Meredith and Time Inc

first_imgThe NOOK Newsstand for Barnes & Noble’s e-reader offering NOOK has added more titles from Meredith and Time Inc. to its periodical roster. NOOK is also updating its newsstand to 1.3 software, increasing capability for the platform. Interactive options now include video, audio podcasts, animations and photo galleries, according to a Barnes & Noble press statement.Time Inc. releases FORTUNE, PEOPLE, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED and TIME magazines for the NOOK; the publisher says all 21 of its titles will be available for the NOOK by year’s end. Current print subscribers can download these digital editions for free.Meredith Corp. brings Parents, Ladies’ Home Journal, Eating Well, Midwest Living, Siempre Mujer, Traditional Home and Fitness magazines to the digital newsstand, with Better Homes and Gardens being added this fall. Meredith plans to have almost two dozen titles on the NOOK by 2012. Subscriptions and single copy sales are available for Meredith users, with a free 14-day trial for digital subscription purchase. In April, the NOOK Color refreshed its offerings by including web options, built-in email and new additions to Shop on NOOK Color. This increased functionality brings the e-reader NOOK (once viewed solely as a platform for digital versions of PDFs) in direct competition with tablet competitors like the iPad and the Motorola Xoom.Time Inc. is making it entire magazine portfolio available on several platforms, with all 21 of its titles to be available for download on the iPad by January 2012.last_img read more

Praetorian Branches Out Acquires Local Government Brand

first_imgThe Praetorian Group has been expanding its public safety business rapidly since last year. Now, they’re branching out to the larger local government space with the acquisition of EfficientGov.Terms weren’t disclosed.Public safety—markets like fire and police departments, emergency management and corrections—can account for more than half of a municipality’s budget, says Alex Ford, CEO of Praetorian, but there’s another half his company didn’t have an entrance into. Areas like planning and development, education and transportation were untapped. Ford says the digital media model Praetorian uses in its current markets—a mix of analysis and news content, along with grant assistance and education—can be applied to an audience of municipal leaders as well.”Public safety is a subset of local government,” he says. “It’s a logical extension to take that model to the rest of local government with a similar mission.”He adds: “We see the same exact model that’s working so well for us in public safety applying to local government more broadly, accessing an opportunity that’s more than twice the size.”See also: Praetorian Buys Fire Chief Assets from Penton The EfficientGov acquisition doesn’t get them all the way there—at least as comprehensively as they serve the public safety market—but Praetorian now has a foothold with the decision makers that hold influence over multiple segments, inside and outside of public safety. Ford says the deal brings about 44,000 new government officials into the fold.EfficientGov will continue to operate as a standalone brand, but will aggregate content from Praetorian’s network of more than 15 sites, Ford says.Prior to the acquisition, the company also announced that John Suhler, formerly the head of private equity firm Veronis Suhler Stevenson, has joined Praetorian in an advisory role.”Since his retirement from VSS, he now has the opportunity to take a more formal role and is excited about our opportunity to scale and grow the business,” Ford says. “He has an incredible amount of experience and knowledge of how to grow digital media companies. His connections are probably, bar none, some of the best in the media world, so he’s going to be a great asset.”last_img read more

Middlesex District Attorneys Office Receives Grant For Insurance Fraud Investigations

first_imgWOBURN, MA – The Middlesex District Attorney’s Office has been awarded a $50,000 grant from the Insurance Fraud Bureau of Massachusetts, in coordination with the Commissioner of Insurance, to fund investigations and prosecutions of automobile insurance fraud, Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan announced today.The grant was presented to District Attorney Ryan by Daniel Johnston, Executive Director of the Insurance Fraud Bureau of Massachusetts. The $50,000 grant is funded by Arbella Mutual Insurance Company, as part of a program in coordination with the Commissioner of Insurance and the Insurance Fraud Bureau which has been used to fund insurance fraud investigations across the state since 2003.The Middlesex District Attorney’s Office Special Investigations Unit investigates cases of fraud, embezzlement, drug trafficking, white collar crimes and related illegal activity. The Unit includes a team of Assistant District Attorneys, Financial Analysts, Forensic Examiners, Paralegals and State Police detectives.The grant money received yesterday will pay for continued investigations by prosecutors in the Special Investigations Unit of the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office.Middlesex District Attorney’s Office(NOTE: The above press release is from the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Thank You To Our Sponsor:Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedState Police Ask For The Public’s Help Identifying Vehicle In Fatal Motorcycle Crash In WoburnIn “Police Log”Wilmington Man Injured In Fatal Car Crash In WoburnIn “Police Log”Middlesex DA Marian Ryan and State AG Healey Launch Recertification Course For Online Mandated Reporter TrainingIn “Government”last_img read more

WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB The Best Stories From Wilmingtons Newspapers

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Below are recent articles about Wilmington — published online between July 7, 2019 to July 14, 2019 — that residents should consider reading:Wilmington Town CrierRink planning flexibility limited by Lizzie McDermottOpen space plan update by Lizzie McDermottWilmington Town Crier sports stories can be read HERE.Wilmington AdvocateNoneWilmington PatchNoneLowell SunFinding ‘A happy accident’ by Emma MurphyNot your mother’s roller derby by Alana MelansonLike Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”last_img read more

Cancer patient driver killed in Ctg crash

first_imgA cancer patient and a driver of an ambulance died in a road accident on Dhaka-Chittagong highway in Sitakunda upazila of Chittagong early Thursday.The deceased are Akkas Mia, 65, a resident of Agrabad area in Chittagong city and ambulance driver Sanaullah, 34, of Itbaria village of Patuakhali sadar upazila.The Chittagong-bound ambulance carrying cancer patient Akkas Mia along with his relatives hit a vehicle in Chhoto Darogarhat area of the upazila leaving six people in the ambulance injured, said Sitakunda fire service station official Owasi Azad.Members of Sitakunda fire service rushed to the spot and took the injured to the local upazila health complex where physicians declared Akkas Mia and Sanaullah dead.Other injured — Rani Begum, wife of Akkas Mia, his son Zahid, his relatives Halima Begum and Ismail — were later transferred to Chittagong Medical College and Hospital.last_img read more

Khaleda wants multiparty democracy to be restored

first_imgBNP chairperson Khaleda ZiaBangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) chairperson Khaleda Zia on Saturday said her party wants the next election to be held under a non-party neutral government so that all political parties can join it.”We want multiparty democracy to be restored in the country and the next election to be held in a free and fair manner with the participation of all parties,” she said.”But the election must be held under a neutral administration. Or else, it won’t be possible to hold an impartial election,” she added.The BNP chief came up with the remarks while exchanging greetings with the Christian community on the occasion of the Christmas Day.Bangladesh Christian Association arranged the programme at the BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office.Khaleda alleged that the government is again trying to hold a 5-January-like unilateral election to hang onto power.She also came down hard on the government for what she said its repressive acts to weaken BNP.Khaleda voiced concern over the growing abuse of drugs by the young generation.”The ruling party men are involved in drug trading. And they’re working to destroy the young generation with it. Many of them were arrested but they have not been punished,” she said.Mentioning that the country is passing through a critical time, the BNP chief urged people of all religions and communities to get united to get rid of it.Later, Khaleda cut a cake with the Christian community members marking the Christmas Day.The BNP chief also wished the Christian community members a happy and prosperous life.last_img read more

UK for fair peaceful elections in Bangladesh

first_imgUK releases the 2017 Foreign & Commonwealth Office report on `Human Rights and Democracy` on Monday.The United Kingdom has said they would continue to stress long-term importance to Bangladesh’s development of “free, fair, inclusive and peaceful” elections, says a new report.In its Bangladesh chapter of the 2017 Foreign & Commonwealth Office report on ‘Human Rights and Democracy’ the UK said they would continue to engage closely with Bangladesh on the Rohingya issue, according to UNB news agency.The UK government praised the Bangladeshi government and people for having accepted and assisted over 700,000 Rohingya refugees who fled Myanmar from August 2017 onwards.The UK also welcomed repeated government assurances that any returns of Rohingya refugees would be voluntary, safe, well-informed and dignified one.The UK took an international lead in supporting the refugees and in mobilising international attention to the situation in Rakhine State.Conditions in Rohingya refugee camps raised particular risks of violence against women, many of whom had already suffered appalling violence in Rakhine State, says the report.Working with UN and other agencies, the UK ensured the humanitarian response included help and support for the survivors of sexual and gender-based violence.It says they will support progress towards gender equality, including on girls’ education, where a focus will be on promoting equity in access, retention and learning outcomes for the most marginalised girls; combating modern slavery; pressing the authorities on enforced disappearances and extrajudicial executions.The UK will continue to engage closely with Bangladesh to support freedom of expression and other democratic freedoms.The report observed that the human rights situation in Bangladesh saw no substantive improvement in 2017.Credible reports of enforced disappearances, extrajudicial killings and torture by government agencies continued, as did government pressure on opposition parties, civil society and the media, claimed the report.The report observes that the human rights situation in Myanmar deteriorated sharply in 2017, with the crisis in Rakhine dominating the second half of the year.The UK continued to have serious concerns about human rights, including ethnic cleansing, restrictions on freedom of religion or belief, freedom of expression, and a lack of accountability for human rights violations and abuses, according to the report.Looking ahead to 2018, the report says the UK stands ready to help the government of Myanmar implement the recommendations of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State.”The UK also welcomes the establishment of an international advisory board. Any returns of refugees to Burma (Myanmar) must be safe, voluntary and dignified and have independent monitoring by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees,” said the report.Humanitarian support to refugees in Bangladesh, through DFID, totalled 59 million pounds in 2017, said the report.”In 2018, we’ll continue funding important projects on freedom of expression and preventing sexual violence, while expanding our work to help tackle hate speech and other underlying drivers of inter-communal tensions,” says the report.last_img

PM in the list of top 100 global thinkers

first_imgPM in the list of top 100 global thinkersPrime minister Sheikh Hasina has made her room in the list of top 100 global thinkers as the famous US-based Foreign Policy journal came up with a register of world leading thinkers.“Sheikh Hasina has responded to the greatest security challenge facing Bangladesh with a generosity . . . Rather than turn away the approximate 700,000 Rohingya who fled persecution in Myanmar, Hasina welcomed them and allowed them to remain in her country,” the journal wrote justifying their decision for incorporating in the list of its Current Issue: Winter 2019.Sheikh Hasina has been named among the 10 top global thinkers in the category “Defense and Security”.Referring to the background of the list, the Foreign Policy said they selected the leading global thinkers cautiously considering their stake in shaping the world mind.“In a year of worldwide economic crisis and dangerous wars, of radical innovation and newfound realpolitik, street revolution and blunt rhetoric, we could think of no better way to make sense of it than through the big ideas of those who shape our understanding of the world,” the article read.last_img read more

DC Woman Presses for Answers After Husband Mysteriously Dies in Jail

first_imgSamuel Shields died while detained in the Prince George’s County Jail.Officials are investigating the death of a 49-year-old man at Prince George’s County Jail in Upper Marlboro, Md., even as his wife is demanding answers.”I just want the truth of why my husband is dead,” Regina Shields, a Northeast Washington, D.C. resident, told NBC 4 Washington.Metro Transit Police said they got into an altercation with Samuel Shields over a $2 fare at Addison Road Metro station on June 17. They pepper sprayed him and took him into custody.According to the statement of charges against Shields, he was arrested for alleged theft under $100, obstructing and hindering and resisting arrest.Regina Shields said that behavior does not sound like that of her husband, a Jamaican-born aspiring reggae artist, who went by the stage name, Potcovah.“I’m very upset about what went on because he didn’t deserve this,” she said. “If he got violent either someone provoked him or whatever. But he’s not a violent person at all.”Jail spokeswoman Yolonda Evans, however, confirmed that when Metro police brought Shields to the jail about 12:38 p.m., he was “disorderly” and had to be separated from the other inmates.“They just keep saying he was talking loud, wouldn’t put on the uniform, and I don’t know what happened after that,” Regina Shields said in the interview.According to Evans, while Samuel Shields was being processed for intake he went into “medical distress” though she wouldn’t go into specifics because of the ongoing investigation.“Our emergency response team and our medical staff began to perform life-saving measures until paramedics arrived and took him to Southern Maryland Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 11:57 p.m.,” the jail spokeswoman said.The situation was a rare one for the jail, Evans added.“Medical emergencies, we have them all the time,” she said. “[But], typically, we may experience an in-custody death once every 12-18 months. The majority of those are deemed suicides.”Regina Shields acknowledged that her 460-pound spouse had suffered from serious medical conditions, including congestive heart failure, sleep apnea and mental illness. However, she doubted that those conditions caused her husband’s death.“I think it was foul play,” she said. “I really do, in my heart.”last_img read more

DC Council Chair Mendelson to Pay for BacktoSchool Haircuts

first_imgD.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson is paying for haircuts for D.C. public and charter school students who have made prior arrangements.On Aug. 28, Mendelson, a Democrat, will be present at the Davis Barber and Beauty Supply shop located on Livingston Road, S.E. in Ward 8 from 12-1 p.m. The barbers at the shop will cut and style the hair of the students for no charge from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The chairman’s office of constituent services is coordinating the event and Mendelson is more than happy to participate.“This is the second year we’ve done it,”Mendelson said in a statement to the AFRO. “It’s a great community activity. It’s a way of helping kids who probably can use the savings from getting a free haircut for other back-to-school needs.”Davis Barber is co-owned by Derek and Marsten Davis and is considered a District institution.Derek E. Davis is a former president of the National Association of Barber Boards of America. He wrote the first barbering curriculum for the D.C. public schools in 1982, taught barbering in various public high schools for many years and has chaired the District of Columbia Barber and Cosmetology Board.His late father, Willie Roscoe Davis, opened Davis Barber shop in 1968 and, throughout the years, became an advocate for the profession in the city. In 1995, Willie Davis was appointed to the District’s Board of Barbers and Cosmetology and he was inducted posthumously (he died in 2001) into the Barber Hall of Fame by the 83rd National Association of Barber Boards of America in Las Vegas, Nev., on Sept. 16, 2009.Davis told the AFRO he was approached by Mendelson’s staff for the free haircuts.“I got a call from the chairman’s chief of staff who asked me whether I wanted to participate this year,” Davis said. “I agreed to do so. I have been performing activities like this, such as cutting young people and supervising barber students in cutting homeless veterans hair, for decades.”Davis said that what Mendelson is doing is good for the community.“We believe in giving back to the community that has been good to us,” he said.Mendelson agrees with Davis on that.“It’s also a way of reminding students how important school is and showing kids that the community cares–not just me, but the barbershop and the other people who participate in this event,” he said. “This is something that makes the kids look good and feel good about going back to school.”last_img read more

High Court stays order on eviction of hawkers in Sector V

first_imgKolkata: The state government on Monday informed the Calcutta High Court that hawkers in Salt Lake Sector V area will be relocated elsewhere only after the state has a hawker policy in place. Soon after hearing the state’s stand, the High Court stayed the process of evicting the hawkers encroaching upon the bus route of Sector V till August 30. The stay of Justice Debangshu Basak came in the wake of the Salt Lake Sector V Hawkers’ Welfare Association, moving the high court against the eviction order. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe next hearing in this regard will be held on August 23. The counsel appearing on behalf of the state claimed that the government is absolutely against forcible eviction and wants proper rehabilitation of the hawkers. Hawkers in Salt Lake Sector V were taken to two plots of land in the area on Saturday where the Nabadiganta Industrial Township Authority plans to relocate them. It may be mentioned that police wants the hawkers on Ring Road, the stretch from the SDF intersection in GN Block to Technopolis building to be vacated for smooth traffic movement. It may be mentioned that hawkers in Sector V had demonstrated by keeping their shops closed on Friday to protest the order asking them to clear three main thoroughfares or face eviction. They also allegedly prevented several delivery persons of app-based food delivery services on their way to offices in Sector V.last_img read more

Halloween make up tricks to keep in mind

first_imgHalloween celebrations in India are on the rise, thanks to the young and cosmopolitan crowd. If you are attending such an event and have your costume sorted but wondering about the make up, make sure you are getting few tricks in place. Experts share some quick tips and tricks for you to keep in mind: -Skin test: First step to trying anything new on your face is to do a skin test at least 24 hours prior. Though one doesn’t have to spend on expensive makeup for one day, make sure you buy approved makeup for face. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf-Base: Let’s start with the base. If you are dressing up as a zombie, ghost, witch, vampire or a mummy, go for a pale look. Your base should be a few shades lighter than your skin tone to achieve this. For other looks, your regular base should be fine. -Eyes: First thing, people look at the eyes, so make sure your eye makeup is good. Dark Gray or Black eyeshadow suit most of the dark characters. Just play around with the shapes according to your costume. Deep red blended with black is perfect for a Vampire. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveA Mermaid or a Fairy offer a good opportunity for one to show off their colorful eyeshadow palette especially blues and greens. One can also use crystal stones or tattoos around the eyes. If you are comfortable with lenses, adding colored ones would take your costume a notch higher. -Hair: Your hair depends on the costume. You can buy or hire a colorful, fancy wig at very reasonable prices from party shops or online. If you don’t plan to use wigs, then you can use a hairspray to set your hair. Colored and sparkly hairspray can also be used which are available in the market. -Lips: Red, Burgundy, Black, Purple are shades for the Halloween season. Apart from these basic shades, gold and shimmery lips can also be played with. A quick tip is to outline the lips with eyeliner pencil to check if you are happy with the shade, as they are easy to remove and smudge less than your lip color. -Don’t forget that it is equally important for you to get rid of that makeup too replace coconut oil with Make up remover. The presence of harsh and punitive chemicals on your skin for prolonged hours, needs sheen and rejuvenation. So, use coconut oil or jojoba oil to remove that excess from your skin for it to breathe and be smooth, once again. -Apply cold cream or wipes on your skin as it shall help in removing the halloween make up. Cold Cream shall nourish the effects of the makeup on your skin thereby giving soft skin. -Using dark colors on skin can leave a stain or impression on your skin. In such cases, people with sensitive and delicate skin can use toothpaste as a rescuer from getting liberated from these colours. A paste of water and baking soda can also be used.last_img read more

How to use M functions within Microsoft Power BI for querying data

first_imgMicrosoft Power BI Desktop contains a rich set of data source connectors and transformation capabilities that support the integration and enhancement of source data. These features are all driven by a powerful functional language and query engine, M, which leverages source system resources when possible and can greatly extend the scope and robustness of the data retrieval process beyond the possibilities of the standard query editor interface alone. As with almost all BI projects, the design and development of the data access and retrieval process has great implications for the analytical value, scalability, and sustainability of the overall Power BI solution. Our article is an excerpt from the book Microsoft Power BI Cookbook, written by Brett Powell. This book shows how to leverage  Microsoft Power BI and the development tools to create better data driven analytics and visualizations. In this article, we dive into Power BI Desktop’s Get Data experience and go through the process of establishing and managing data source connections and queries. Examples are provided of using the Query Editor interface and the M language directly to construct and refine queries to meet common data transformation and cleansing needs. In practice and as per the examples, a combination of both tools is recommended to aid the query development process. Viewing and analyzing M functions Every time you click on a button to connect to any of Power BI Desktop’s supported data sources or apply any transformation to a data source object, such as changing a column’s data type, one or multiple M expressions are created reflecting your choices. These M expressions are automatically written to dedicated M documents and, if saved, are stored within the Power BI Desktop file as Queries. M is a functional programming language like F#, and it’s important that Power BI developers become familiar with analyzing and later writing and enhancing the M code that supports their queries. Getting ready Build a query through the user interface that connects to the AdventureWorksDW2016CTP3 SQL Server database on the ATLAS server and retrieves the DimGeography table, filtered by United States for English. Click on Get Data from the Home tab of the ribbon, select SQL Server from the list of database sources, and provide the server and database names. For the Data Connectivity mode, select Import. A navigation window will appear, with the different objects and schemas of the database. Select the DimGeography table from the Navigation window and click on Edit. In the Query Editor window, select the EnglishCountryRegionName column and then filter on United States from its dropdown. Figure 2: Filtering for United States only in the Query Editor At this point, a preview of the filtered table is exposed in the Query Editor and the Query Settings pane displays the previous steps. Figure 3: The Query Settings pane in the Query Editor How to do it Formula Bar With the Formula Bar visible in the Query Editor, click on the Source step under Applied Steps in the Query Settings pane. You should see the following formula expression: Figure 4: The SQL.Database() function created for the Source step Click on the Navigation step to expose the following expression: Figure 5: The metadata record created for the Navigation step The navigation expression (2) references the source expression (1) The Formula Bar in the Query Editor displays individual query steps, which are technically individual M expressions It’s convenient and very often essential to view and edit all the expressions in a centralized window, and for this, there’s the Advanced Editor M is a functional language, and it can be useful to think of query evaluation in M as similar to Excel spreadsheet formulas in which multiple formulas can reference each other. The M engine can determine which expressions are required by the final expression to return and evaluate only those expressions. Configuring Power BI Development Tools, the display setting for both the Query Settings pane and the Formula bar should be enabled as GLOBAL | Query Editor options. Figure 6: Global layout options for the Query Editor Alternatively, on a per file basis, you can control these settings and others from the View tab of the Query Editor toolbar. Figure 7: Property settings of the View tab in the Query Editor Advanced Editor window Given its importance to the query development process, the Advanced Editor dialog is exposed on both the Home and View tabs of the Query Editor. It’s recommended to use the Query Editor when getting started with a new query and when learning the M language. After several steps have been applied, use the Advanced Editor to review and optionally enhance or customize the M query. As a rich, functional programming language, there are many M functions and optional parameters not exposed via the Query Editor; going beyond the limits of the Query Editor enables more robust data retrieval and integration processes. Figure 8: The Home tab of the Query Editor Click on Advanced Editor from either the View or Home tabs (Figure 8 and Figure 9, respectively). All M function expressions and any comments are exposed Figure 9: The Advanced Editor view of the DimGeography query When developing retrieval processes for Power BI models, consider these common ETL questions: How are our queries impacting the source systems? Can we make our retrieval queries more resilient to changes in source data such that they avoid failure? Is our retrieval process efficient and simple to follow and support or are there unnecessary steps and queries? Are our retrieval queries delivering sufficient performance to the BI application? Is our process flexible such that we can quickly apply changes to data sources and logic? M queries are not intended as a substitute for the workloads typically handled by enterprise ETL tools such as SSIS or Informatica. However, just as BI professionals would carefully review the logic and test the performance of SQL stored procedures and ETL packages supporting their various cubes and reports environment, they should also review the M queries created to support Power BI models and reports. How it works Two of the top performance and scalability features of M’s engine are Query Folding and Lazy Evaluation. If possible, the M queries developed in Power BI Desktop are converted (folded) into SQL statements and passed to source systems for processing. M can also reduce the required resources for a given query by ignoring any unnecessary or redundant steps (variables). M is a case-sensitive language. This includes referencing variables in M expressions (RenameColumns versus Renamecolumns) as well as the values in M queries. For example, the values “Apple” and “apple” are considered unique values in an M query; the Table.Distinct() function will not remove rows for one of the values. Variable names in M expressions cannot have spaces without a hash sign and double quotes. Per Figure 10, when the Query Editor graphical interface is used to create M queries this syntax is applied automatically, along with a name describing the M transformation applied. Applying short, descriptive variable names (with no spaces) improves the readability of M queries. Query folding The query from this recipe was “folded” into the following SQL statement and sent to the ATLAS server for processing. Figure 10: The SQL statement generated from the DimGeography M query Right-click on the Filtered Rows step and select View Native Query to access the Native Query window from Figure 11: Figure 11: View Native Query in Query Settings Finding and revising queries that are not being folded to source systems is a top technique for enhancing large Power BI datasets. See the Pushing Query Processing Back to Source Systems recipe of Chapter 11, Enhancing and Optimizing Existing Power BI Solutions for an example of this process. M query structure The great majority of queries created for Power BI will follow the let…in structure as per this recipe, as they contain multiple steps with dependencies among them. Individual expressions are separated by commas. The expression referred to following the in keyword is the expression returned by the query. The individual step expressions are technically “variables”, and if the identifiers for these variables (the names of the query steps) contain spaces then the step is placed in quotes, and prefixed with a # sign as per the Filtered Rows step in Figure 10. Lazy evaluation The M engine also has powerful “lazy evaluation” logic for ignoring any redundant or unnecessary variables, as well as short-circuiting evaluation (computation) once a result is determinate, such as when one side (operand) of an OR logical operator is computed as True. The order of evaluation of the expressions is determined at runtime; it doesn’t have to be sequential from top to bottom. In the following example, a step for retrieving Canada was added and the step for the United States was ignored. Since the CanadaOnly variable satisfies the overall let expression of the query, only the Canada query is issued to the server as if the United States row were commented out or didn’t exist. Figure 12: Revised query that ignores Filtered Rows step to evaluate Canada only View Native Query (Figure 12) is not available given this revision, but a SQL Profiler trace against the source database server (and a refresh of the M query) confirms that CanadaOnly was the only SQL query passed to the source database. Figure 13: Capturing the SQL statement passed to the server via SQL Server Profiler trace There’s more Partial query folding A query can be “partially folded”, in which a SQL statement is created resolving only part of an overall query The results of this SQL statement would be returned to Power BI Desktop (or the on-premises data gateway) and the remaining logic would be computed using M’s in-memory engine with local resources M queries can be designed to maximize the use of the source system resources, by using standard expressions supported by query folding early in the query process Minimizing the use of local or on-premises data gateway resources is a top consideration Limitations of query folding No folding will take place once a native SQL query has been passed to the source system. For example, passing a SQL query directly through the Get Data dialog. The following query, specified in the Get Data dialog, is included in the Source Step: Figure 14: Providing a user defined native SQL query Any transformations applied after this native query will use local system resources. Therefore, the general implication for query development with native or user-defined SQL queries is that if they’re used, try to include all required transformations (that is, joins and derived columns), or use them to utilize an important feature of the source database not being utilized by the folded query, such as an index. Not all data sources support query folding, such as text and Excel files. Not all transformations available in the Query Editor or via M functions directly are supported by some data sources. The privacy levels defined for the data sources will also impact whether folding is used or not. SQL statements are not parsed before they’re sent to the source system. The Table.Buffer() function can be used to avoid query folding. The table output of this function is loaded into local memory and transformations against it will remain local. We have discussed effective techniques for accessing and retrieving data using Microsoft Power BI. Do check out this book Microsoft Power BI Cookbook for more information on using Microsoft power BI for data analysis and visualization. Read Next: Expert Interview: Unlocking the secrets of Microsoft Power BI Tutorial: Building a Microsoft Power BI Data Model Expert Insights:Ride the third wave of BI with Microsoft Power BIlast_img read more

IATA reports strong year for air travel demand says aviation is the

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Share IATA reports strong year for air travel demand, says “aviation is the business of freedom” GENEVA — In light of the U.S. immigrant ban that has sparked controversy and protests across the country, IATA, in its full-year global passenger traffic report, says that “aviation is the business of freedom” and that its social and economic benefits must be defended “from barriers to travel and protectionist agendas.”According to the report, air travel demand had a strong year in 2016, closing out the year on a high note with an 8.8% increase in December. Demand (measured in revenue passenger kilometres, or RPKs) rose 6.3% compared to 2015, well ahead of the 10-year average annual growth rate of 5.5%. Capacity also rose 6.2% compared to 2015, pushing the load factor up to a record full-year average high of 80.5%.“Air travel was a good news story in 2016. Connectivity increased with the establishment of more than 700 new routes. And a $44 fall in average return fares helped to make air travel even more accessible,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO. “As a result, a record 3.7 billion passengers flew safely to their destination. Demand for air travel is still expanding.”More news:  Transat calls Groupe Mach’s latest offer “highly abusive, coercive and misleading”De Juniac also added: “Our freedom to connect through air travel drives prosperity and enriches societies. That freedom can only be given its fullest expression when governments facilitate the movement of people and goods.”International passenger traffic rose 6.7% in 2016 compared to 2015, with all regions recording year-over-year increases in demand. Middle East carriers had the strongest regional annual traffic growth for the fifth year in a row, with RPKs expanding 11.8%. Asia Pacific carriers came in a close second with a demand increase of 8.3% compared to 2015.North American airlines had a good year as well, seeing demand rise 2.6% in 2016. Most of the growth occurred in the second quarter, and traffic was strongest on Pacific routes. In contrast, North Atlantic has been fairly flat. Capacity rose 3.3%, reducing the load factor for 0.5 percentage points to 81.3%.Domestic air travel rose 5.7% in 2016. Capacity rose 5.1% and load factor was 82.2%, up 0.5 percentage points over 2015. All major markets except Brazil showed growth, with India and China being the standout performers (RPK expansion of 23.3% and 11.7%, respectively). Tags: IATAcenter_img Travelweek Group Thursday, February 2, 2017 Posted bylast_img read more