Hotelbeds strengthens commitment

first_imgHotelbeds strengthens commitmentHotelbeds strengthens commitment to offer hoteliers high-value bookings with plan to add 14,000 travel agent customers Source = Hotelbeds Hotelbeds plans to add 14,000 new travel agent customers by 2022 to take the total number of travel agents to 64,000.Plan forms part of Hotelbeds’ strong commitment to offer hotelier partners incremental bookings from non-domestic and high-value guests.Growth focused on luxury agents and those specialising in high-value and long-haul trips.Hotelbeds, the world’s leading bedbank, has announced today an ambitious plan to increase the number of travel agent customers affiliated to the bedbank booking platform as part of its commitment to offer hoteliers access to high-value guests.The goal of this strategic plan is to add 14,000 new travel agent customers – focusing in particular on luxury travel agents and those specialising in high-value, long-haul bookings – in the coming next three years, taking the total to over 64,000 travel agents globally.Travel agents – along with tour operators, airlines and points redemption partners – form a central part of Hotelbeds’ strong commitment to offer to hoteliers incremental bookings of non-domestic and high-value guests who book further in advance, cancel less, pay more for a room, spend more in destination and come back more frequently.Carlos Muñoz, Bedbank Managing Director commented: “Recently we announced the beginning of a new era for Hotelbeds under a single unified brand and purpose: to support our hotel partners by providing incremental bookings of non-domestic and high-value guests through a network of B2B travel trade buyers formed by travel agents, tour operators, points redemption partners and airlines.“Our three-year plan for the retail channel is to continue to grow the number of travel agents to over 64,000 by 2022 – an increase of 14,000 – especially in niche segments such as luxury and high-end, long-haul oriented and specialty packages.“The recently refreshed new Bedsonline brand – which is the retail brand used by Hotelbeds – and enhanced value proposition for customers, along with our strong local relevance and presence, improved product offering and tools are going to be the key drivers in achieving this goal.”About HotelbedsHotelbeds is the world’s leading Bedbank.In a fragmented and complex travel landscape, Hotelbeds provides over 180,000 hotels across the globe with access to high-value, complementary distribution channels that significantly increase occupancy rates and optimise RevPAR – while not competing with the hotelier’s direct distribution strategy.Hotelbeds does this by offering hoteliers access to a network of over 60,000 hard-to-access B2B travel buyers such as tour operators, retail travel agents, airline websites, and loyalty partners in over 140 source markets worldwide. These channels provide hotel partners with returning guests that book further in advance, cancel less, spend more in-destination and stay longer.In addition to accommodation, Hotelbeds is also the world’s largest B2B seller of travel ancillaries, offering 24,000 transfer routes and 18,000 activities, as well as attractions, tickets and car hire. Operating under the ‘Beyond the Bed’ product line, it provides both hoteliers and travel distribution partners with an efficient platform and powerful tools to easily integrate and commercialise its leading portfolio of high-margin products.The company is headquartered in Palma, Spain and employs around 5,000 employees across over 60 offices globally.last_img

Direct Flights from Cardiff

first_imgFrom Cardiff you can fly direct to 26 different destinations. Plan your next connection-free trip to one of the great destinations below. Fly to 26 destinations direct from Cardiff Cardiff to AlicanteSearch Now >Cardiff to AmsterdamSearch Now >Cardiff to AngleseySearch Now >Cardiff to BelfastSearch Now >Cardiff to BerlinSearch Now >Cardiff to BridgetownSearch Now >Cardiff to CorkSearch Now >Cardiff to DohaSearch Now >Cardiff to DublinSearch Now >Cardiff to EdinburghSearch Now >Cardiff to FaroSearch Now >Cardiff to GlasgowSearch Now >Cardiff to Gran CanariaSearch Now >Cardiff to IbizaSearch Now >Cardiff to JerseySearch Now >Cardiff to LanzaroteSearch Now >Cardiff to MalagaSearch Now >Cardiff to MilanSearch Now >Cardiff to Montego BaySearch Now >Cardiff to MunichSearch Now >Cardiff to NewcastleSearch Now >Cardiff to PalmaSearch Now >Cardiff to PaphosSearch Now >Cardiff to ParisSearch Now >Cardiff to RomeSearch Now >Cardiff to TenerifeSearch Now >center_img RelatedFlybe becomes Cardiff Airport’s busiest airlineFlybe has emerged as the busiest airline operating from Cardiff AirportBmibaby is Britain’s most punctual cheap flights carrierBetween January and March this year, 86.8 percent of bmibaby’s flights departed within 15 minutes of scheduleFlybe launches 2009 summer schedule from CardiffFlybe has launched its 2009 summer schedule from Cardiff Airportlast_img

AsiaSat 7 the Hong Kongbased satellite operator

first_imgAsiaSat 7, the Hong Kong-based satellite operator’s latest satellite, is scheduled for launch on November 26 onboard an ILS Proton Breeze M vehicle from Baikonur in Kazakhstan.AsiaSat 7, with 28 C-band and 17 Ku-band transponders, will replace the AsiaSat 3S satellite at 105.5° East, and will deliver C-band services over the Middle East and central Asia as well as Australasia, with Ku-band coverage over East Asia and South Asia, as well as via a steerable beam.last_img

How NHL Legend Cam Neely Teamed Up with Denis Leary to Kick

first_imgProject Grow Image credit: Paul Marotta | Getty Images Add to Queue Next Article –shares Apply Now » You might think that a guy who spent a total of 143 minutes in the penalty box during one season of hockey might have somewhat less than a sparkling sense of humor, but you’d be wrong.NHL Hall of Famer and President of the Boston Bruins Cam Neely not only appreciates a good joke, he and Denis Leary co-founded Comics Come Home, the longest-running comedy fundraiser in history. Since 1995, the annual event benefits The Cam Neely Foundation for Cancer Care, whose mission is “to provide comfort, support and hope to cancer patients and their families.” This year’s show at the TD Garden in Boston on Nov. 18 boasts a mega lineup of stars includes Jimmy Fallon, Craig Ferguson and Jeff Ross, among many others. Tickets are on sale here.Entrepreneur sat down with the bruising Bruin to discuss his passion for helping others, leadership, and tips for building a team that hates to lose.This is the 23rd year of Comics Come Home. What has driven you to do this year after year?Both of my parents were diagnosed with cancer at a young age and passed away. Most professional athletes do a number of charitable things throughout their careers, and when cancer struck my family, I decided to start this foundation focused on areas of care that I saw was lacking. Families suffer so much when a loved one is sick. So we have two main parts: The Neely Cancer Fund which supports treatment and research efforts and The Neely House, built in memory of my parents, which gives families a convenient, comfortable place to live and relax and be around others while undergoing treatment.How did Denis Leary get involved?Denis is from Worcester Mass. I first came to Boston in 1986, instead of going to movies I enjoyed going to comedy shows. Through some mutual friends, I met Denis and we became friends. I asked him if he would consider doing some standup for a benefit for our foundation, and he did so much more. Comics Come Home is really his brainchild, he pulled together his friends from the Boston clubs and it has grown so much from there.Related: (Survey) A Quarter of Cancer Patients Use Legal Medical MarijuanaWhether it is running your foundation or your hockey team, how would you describe your decision-making style?It’s really all about having the right conversations with the right people to get the right information. You need to digest the facts and then ultimately not be afraid to make a decision. The toughest thing is understanding that your decisions could impact other people’s lives, but you can’t be afraid to do what you think it’s right. You just have to believe it and move forward.What do you look for in new hires?One of my favorite questions to ask people — especially prospective players — is, “Do you love to win or do you hate to lose?” There’s a big difference. Everybody loves to win. I hate losing. And I love when great teamwork works. Sure, this guy might have scored three goals, but in order to do that, someone had to pass him the puck.Related: 15 Motivational Quotes From Legends in SportsBesides hockey and charity, you are something of a notable film actor. You famously hocked a loogie into Jeff Daniels’ cheeseburger in Dumb & Dumber.[Laughs] Yes, I played Sea Bass. That was a heck of a good time. The funny thing was when the Farellys asked me to do it, I didn’t know much about the production. I said sure, as long as it doesn’t interfere with my playing schedule. Then Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels signed on. Wow, this just became a much bigger deal! Every once in a while when I’m walking down the street, I still get people shouting, “Kick his ass, Sea Bass!”What was it like to have the Bruins win the Stanley Cup?For me it was it was such a special moment because I truly love our fan base. It was 39 years between cups and so you have generations of passionate fans. I was excited for our fan base and the city of Boston.Do you plan on talking to the team about the ongoing controversy of players not standing for the National Anthem?Yes, we’ll be addressing that. You know, I believe everybody has a right to express their opinions and their values and beliefs and I don’t necessarily think that a sporting event is a place to do that. Fans are there to watch the event. But I believe in people having the right to express themselves, absolutely.Related: Which Tech Billionaires Donate the Most to Charity? (Infographic)There were a bit more fisticuffs back in the day with hockey. Is it true that players would kick the crap out of each other on the ice, then go grab a beer after the game?Not exactly, but if we’d run into each other, it wasn’t like we held grudges. You know, we had an issue and we took care of it on the ice, over and done.If only everything could be like that simple.I was joking the other day that when I got upset with someone back in the day, I used to get five minutes in the penalty box. Now I’d get handcuffs!Any chance people who go see Comics Come Home will see you do a set?Ha, no I am not going anywhere near a microphone to tell jokes on stage. I think I’m more “witty” than funny. That is something I would never attempt.Finally, do you want to go on the record stating that the New York Rangers are guaranteed to win the Stanley Cup this year?[Laughs] I’m not going to do that either.Tickets for Comics Come Home are available now, click here to purchase.   The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. Entrepreneur Staffcenter_img 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List October 5, 2017 Dan Bova How NHL Legend Cam Neely Teamed Up with Denis Leary to Kick Cancer’s Ass Editorial Director 6 min read The 23rd year of Comics Come Home promises big laughs for an incredible cause.last_img

Tesla Launches Orders for the 35000 Model 3

first_img Image credit: Roberto Baldwin | Engadget Add to Queue Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Next Article March 1, 2019 Register Now » Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals 3 min read Tesla This story originally appeared on Engadget –shares Tesla Launches Orders for the $35,000 Model 3 You can order one now. In a sort of surprise event (CEO Elon Musk tweeted it out two days ago), Tesla announced the $35,000 Standard Range Model 3 is available for order. The automaker has been working diligently to streamline its production line and lower unit costs of the Model 3. You can order it right now.The rear-wheel-drive car will have a 220-mile range, a top speed of 130 miles per hour and a zero to 60 time of 5.6 seconds.The $35,000 Model 3 will enter the market that’s becoming increasingly crowded. The Chevy Bolt, Kia Niro EV and Hyundai Kona EV are all in the same price point and have about the same amount of range. But none of them have the cache of the Model 3.The lower-priced Model 3 will have a few caveats including a new “standard interior.” That means cloth seats, manual steering wheel adjustment, a base trim, basic audio and standard maps and navigation. Gone are the fog lamps and docking ports for a smartphone. But it will have four USB ports, so that’s not a huge loss.Oh, it’s also only available in black at that cost. Blue and silver paint will set you back $1,500, white paint is $2,000 and if you want red, it’s going to cost you a whopping $2,500. Fortunately, black cars are cool.The car will still have the glass roof (woohoo), and folding heated side mirrors. The company went with a more basic interior for the lower-priced vehicle which should be expected.Tesla also announced a Standard Range Plus vehicle with 240-miles of range before you need to hit up a Supercharger. It also has a better interior than the Standard Range Model 3 with adjustable seats, better materials and upgraded audio.The pricing of both of these vehicles does not include the Autopilot suite ( Autosteer and Traffic Aware Cruise Control) which is $3,000 before delivery and $4,000 after delivery. So if after a while you want to upgrade your vehicle with the driver’s assistance package it’ll cost $4,000 and you’ll get an over the air update.The new full self-driving capability (it includes the above and Summon, Autopark, Navigate on Autopilot and future self-driving capabilities) will cost $5,000 before delivery and $7,000 after delivery.Currently, the delivery date for the Standard Range version is two to four weeks in the United States and according to Musk, additional places on the planet in three to six months.Going forward, the way you buy a Tesla will change dramatically. All Tesla’s will now only be available for online order. If you go into a store, they’ll direct you to a computer to order the car that the company says will only take you one minute to purchase.If a $35,000 car is still too rich for your blood, during a call with Musk, he stated that cheaper Tesla vehicles would enter the market in 2-3 years. He reiterated probably closer to three years.If you’re an early reservation holder for this vehicle, you will get first priority according to Musk. So that car you’ve been waiting for is almost ready for pick up. Roberto Baldwinlast_img

New review points to statistically small link between childrens screen media use

first_img Source:http://www.uva.nl/en/content/news/press-releases/2018/10/much-still-unclear-about-relationship-between-screen-media-use-and-adhd-in-children.html?origin=kUP%2Byx6UTZqvuJiCJKnnEQ Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Oct 4 2018There is a statistically small relationship between children’s screen media use and ADHD-related behaviors. This is the finding of an extensive literature review on this subject carried out by researchers from the UvA’s Center for research on Children, Adolescents and the Media (CcaM). The review also reveals several shortcomings. For example, the effects of program pacing and violent content on ADHD-related behaviour is still not clearly understood, and much remains unknown about how individual differences in temperament, development and social factors influence such behaviours. As a result, the researchers call for a systematic series of empirical studies on the relationship between screen media use and ADHD. Their results were recently published in the journal Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences. Over the last four decades, there has been a significant increase in the number of children and adolescents diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This has led scholars and healthcare professionals alike to repeatedly attribute the increase to the violent, arousing and fast-paced nature of screen media entertainment. However, the degree to which screen media use and ADHD are linked remains a point of debate.Four decades of researchTo throw light on the current body of knowledge and to open the way for future research, UvA researchers Ine Beyens, Patti Valkenburg and Jessica Taylor Piotrowski decided to do a systematic review of four decades of scientific research on the relationship between children’s screen media use and ADHD-related behaviour such as hyperactivity, impulsivity and attention problems. The researchers used the so-called Differential Susceptibility to Media effects Model (DSMM) to systematically organize the literature, identify possible shortcomings and to point the way for future research.Related StoriesNew curriculum to improve soft skills in schools boosts children’s health and behaviorRepurposing a heart drug could increase survival rate of children with ependymomaResearchers identify gene mutations linked to leukemia in children with Down’s syndromeThe scientific literature revealed evidence that points to a statistically small relationship between screen media use and ADHD-related behavior. It also showed that individual differences such as gender or aggressive traits can influence this relationship. On the basis of their findings, the researchers therefore recommend that future research on the relationship between screen media use and ADHD-related behavior focus on causality, underlying mechanisms and individual differences in susceptibility.Cause or consequence?’Up till now little attention has been paid to causality in the relationship between screen media use and ADHD. This makes it difficult to determine whether media use is the cause or consequence of children’s ADHD-related behaviors, or both’, says Beyens. ‘We also need to take a closer look at the role of violent media content and pacing (the tempo of media content) in the emergence of ADHD-related behaviour and examine associations of different types of media use with executive functioning skills, including working memory, inhibitory control and attention, that have been linked to ADHD-related behaviours.’ In addition, the researchers believe it is important to seek further evidence for possible differences in susceptibility to media-effects on ADHD by examining age differences, dispositional susceptibility and social sensitivity. The development of a child, his or her temperament, character and the social context in which the child is raised all have an influence on the type of media (and media content) the child uses and how he or she responds to it. Beyens: ‘Studying individual differences is crucial for determining who is or isn’t susceptible to screen media effects. Only by carrying out more empirical research will it be possible to better understand the relationship between screen media use and ADHD.’last_img

Scripps Research scientists reveal potential new approach to design HIV vaccines

first_imgReviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Nov 26 2018A new candidate HIV vaccine from Scripps Research surmounts technical hurdles that stymied previous vaccine efforts, and stimulates a powerful anti-HIV antibody response in animal tests.The new vaccine strategy, described in a paper on November 23 in Science Advances, is based on the HIV envelope protein, Env. This complex, shape-shifting molecule has been notoriously difficult to produce in vaccines in a way that induces useful immunity to HIV.However, the Scripps Research scientists found a simple, elegant method for stabilizing Env proteins in the desired shape even for diverse strains of HIV. Mounted on virus-like particles to mimic a whole virus, the stabilized Env proteins elicited robust anti-HIV antibody responses in mice and rabbits. Candidate vaccines based on this strategy are now being tested in monkeys.”We see this new approach as a general solution to the long-standing problems of HIV vaccine design,” says principal investigator Jiang Zhu, associate professor in the Department of Integrative Structural and Computation Biology at Scripps Research.Copies of Env study the surface of HIV; their chief function is to grab hold of host cells and break into them to initiate infection. Since Env plays this crucial role in infection, and is the viral structure with the most exposure to the immune system of an infected host, it has been the main target of HIV vaccine efforts. The idea has been to inoculate people with the whole Env protein or subunits of it to stimulate the production of Env-binding antibodies, in the hope that these antibodies will prevent HIV from infecting host cells in future exposures to the virus.So far, of course, no HIV vaccine has been effective in large-scale clinical trials. Many researchers believe that an HIV vaccine can work if it presents Env proteins to the immune system in a way that closely resembles the shape of Env on a real virus before it has infected a cell. But presenting Env correctly has been a huge challenge.On an HIV virus, Env protrudes from the viral membrane in tight clusters of three, called trimers, and these complex structures adopt radically different shapes before and after infecting cells. HIV vaccine researchers, despite years and tens of millions of dollars of experimentation, have failed to find a broadly applicable method for stabilizing Env trimers in the desired, pre-infection shape.”The trimer-stabilization solutions that have been reported so far have worked for a few HIV strains but have not been generalizable,” Zhu says. “Env trimer ‘metastability’, as we call it, has really been a central problem for trimer-based HIV vaccine design.”Related StoriesResearch sheds light on sun-induced DNA damage and repairNovel vaccine against bee sting allergy successfully testedEven when HIV prevention drug is covered, other costs block treatmentZhu, trained as a biophysicist, sought a more general solution to the Env stability problem, and in a paper in 2016 he and his Scripps Research colleagues reported that modifying a short, springy section of Env called HR1 might do the trick–it allowed Env to stay in the pre-infection, “closed” shape.In the new study he and his team showed that this strategy does indeed work for Env trimers from diverse HIV strains circulating in different parts of the world. This “uncleaved prefusion-optimized” (UFO) approach, as they call it, yields Env trimers that are stabilized in the closed shape and can be produced efficiently, with surprisingly little need for purification, in the types of cells normally used in biotech manufacturing.”By now in my lab we’ve made this modification to Envs from 30 to 40 different HIV strains, and in most of the cases it has worked like a charm,” Zhu says.He and his colleagues further optimized their vaccine strategy by genetically linking their stabilized Env trimers, up to 60 at a time, to individual nanoparticles that mimic the globular shape of a whole virus. In this way the vaccine molecule, though artificial and lacking the genetic material for viral replication, seems to the immune system very much like a real invading virus and stimulates a stronger reaction.In mice, Zhu and his team found, a sample Env-on-nanoparticles vaccine, within just eight weeks, elicited antibodies that in lab tests successfully neutralized a naturally circulating HIV strain–of a type that prior candidate vaccines generally have failed against.”This is the first time any candidate HIV vaccine has induced this desired type of antibody response in mice,” Zhu says. Similarly unprecedented results were obtained in rabbits, demonstrating that the nanoparticle-based approach is clearly superior to the use of isolated Env proteins–it elicits a significantly stronger response and does so much more quickly.Further tests are now underway in 24 monkeys at the National Institutes of Health-sponsored Southwest National Primate Center in San Antonio, Texas.Zhu and Scripps Research have licensed their HIV vaccine technology to a startup company, Ufovax LLC, which is sponsoring the ongoing tests. “We’re now testing two candidate vaccines based on Env trimers from different HIV strains, plus a third candidate vaccine that is a cocktail of three Env-based vaccines,” says Ji Li, Ufovax CEO. “We think this new approach represents a true breakthrough after 30 years of HIV vaccine research.” Source:https://www.scripps.edu/news-and-events/press-room/2018/20181126-zhu-hiv-vaccine.htmllast_img

States push for caregiver tax credits

first_img This article was reprinted from khn.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente. Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 25 2019Gloria Brown didn’t get a good night’s sleep. Her husband, Arthur Brown, 79, has Alzheimer’s disease and had spent most of the night pacing their bedroom, opening and closing drawers, and putting on and taking off his jacket.So Gloria, 73, asked a friend to take Arthur out for a few hours one recent afternoon so she could grab a much-needed nap. She was lucky that day because she didn’t need to call upon the home health aide who comes to their house twice a week.The price of paying for help isn’t cheap: The going rate in the San Francisco Bay Area ranges from $25 to $35 an hour. Gloria Brown estimates she has spent roughly $72,000 on caregivers, medications and supplies since her husband was diagnosed four years ago.”The cost can be staggering,” said state Assemblyman Jim Patterson (R-Fresno), author of a bill that would give family caregivers in California a tax credit of up to $5,000 annually to help offset their expenses.A 2016 study by AARP found that the average caregiver spends $6,954 a year on out-of-pocket costs caring for a family member. The expenses range from $7 for medical wipes to tens of thousands of dollars to retrofit a home with a walk-in shower or hire outside help.AARP, a lobbying organization for people 50 and older, is pushing similar bills in at least seven other state legislatures this year, said Elaine Ryan, the group’s vice president of State Advocacy and Strategy Integration. Arizona, Illinois, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Wisconsin are considering legislation, and AARP expects measures also to be introduced in Florida, Massachusetts and Ohio.In Wisconsin, two Republicans and two Democrats are behind that state’s tax credit measure.”We need a whole discussion about how we can best keep people at home and meet their needs,” said state Rep. Debra Kolste, a Democrat who explained that most people know someone who is caring for a family member. She hopes the measure can make it through the Republican legislature and be signed by Wisconsin’s Democratic governor.New Jersey approved a state income tax credit in 2017 specifically for caregivers of wounded veterans. However, efforts in other states have failed, including in Arizona last year and Mississippi and Virginia this year.At the federal level, bills that would have created a federal income tax credit of up to $3,000 never got out of congressional committees last year.”Whether I’m in Billings, Mont., or in Mississippi, the caregiver tax credit is something that people are asking for,” Ryan said. “All they’re asking for is a little financial help to offset these costs.”A tax credit, said Brown and other caregivers, would be welcome relief to the estimated 4.5 million family caregivers in California who care for a loved one with a chronic, disabling or serious health condition. Nationwide, the AARP estimates there are about 40 million people caring for family members.​ As her husband’s disease progresses, Gloria Brown expects costs to escalate. For instance, she wants to install bars in the bathroom to help prevent her husband from falling, and anticipates she will need more professional help.”I think we’re just moving into that stage where I’m going to see the dollars going out for things that will help to make things easier for him at home and more comfortable,” Brown said. “It’s a cost you just hadn’t anticipated.”Related StoriesI’m a CPAP dropout: Why many lose sleep over apnea treatmentResearch sheds light on sun-induced DNA damage and repairHealthy lifestyle lowers dementia risk despite genetic predispositionLong-term caregiving has emerged as one of the major issues in California’s Capitol this year, with proposals ranging from naming a state “Aging Czar” to funding a new cash benefit for long-term care services. In his State of the State address last month, Gov. Gavin Newsom called for a master plan for aging.”I’ve had some personal — and painful — experience with this recently,” Newsom told the joint session of the legislature.Newsom, whose father had dementia and died last year, also has tapped former first lady Maria Shriver to lead a new Alzheimer’s Prevention and Preparedness Task Force, and has asked lawmakers to approve $3 million in state funds for Alzheimer’s disease research.Patterson’s bill would provide up to a $5,000 state income tax credit to family caregivers for five years, starting in tax year 2020. They would be reimbursed for 50 percent of eligible expenses, such as retrofitting a home, hiring an aide and leasing or buying specialty equipment. The credit would be available to individuals who make up to $170,000 a year, or joint income tax filers who make up to $250,000.Patterson, a Republican in the minority, is hopeful he can convince his colleagues that giving people a tax credit is financially sound because it would enable caregivers to keep their loved ones at home rather than relying on more expensive government services.”If members of the legislature and the governor would look through the eyes of their own families, friends and neighbors … I think it can be passed and be signed,” Patterson said.But the measure faces competition for a slice of California’s $21 billion surplus, from proposals by the governor and lawmakers to boost funding for education, health care, housing and dozens of other programs.For Pam Sogge of Oakland, Calif., a tax credit would allow her to hire a home health aide for an additional three hours a week.Her husband, Rick Sogge, 61, has early-onset Alzheimer’s and becomes frantic when left by himself. Sometimes when she leaves him alone in another room of their home, he searches for her every two minutes.Because Rick Sogge is still physically healthy, most of the couple’s caregiving expenses pay for part-time help to take him on outings so Pam can work, run errands or go to the doctor’s office.”You have a very uncertain financial future. You don’t know what’s going to happen. You don’t know how long it’s going to take. So you’re very conservative,” said Pam Sogge, 56, who has been caring for her husband for five years. “A tax credit, in a way, it’s permission and encouragement to get some help.”This KHN story first published on California Healthline, a service of the California Health Care Foundation.last_img

Experts Suggest Compulsory Measles Vaccination in Children Could Prevent Epidemic

first_imgMandatory immunization is certainly one way to try and increase coverage but it’s far from clear how well it works or whether it would work at all in many places.“If the reasons that the vaccine is not getting into the children relate to easy access, vaccine supply or clarity of information available to parents, then making it compulsory will do nothing to alleviate such obstacles.“If there is widespread mistrust of authority or of the motivation behind any such requirements, it could actually make things worse.”Professor Adam Finn, University of Bristol By Lois Zoppi, BAMay 17 2019Experts from an Italian study have suggested that compulsory measles vaccines before children start attending school may be necessary to prevent increasing disease incidence rates worldwide. However, not everyone agrees that compulsory vaccination would be an effective tactic to combat a resurgence of the disease. Professor Adam Finn of the University of Bristol explains that this approach may not be effective for everybody. Related StoriesResearchers identify gene mutations linked to leukemia in children with Down’s syndromeRevolutionary gene replacement surgery restores vision in patients with retinal degenerationChaos in the house and asthma in children – the connectionCo-author of the study Dr. Stefano Merler is confident about the conclusions made by his study.“Our results suggest that most of the countries we have studied would strongly benefit from the introduction of compulsory vaccination at school entry in addition to current immunization programmes.“In particular, we found that this strategy would allow the UK, Ireland and the US to reach stable herd immunity levels in the next decades, which means that a sufficiently high proportion of individuals are immune to the disease to avoid future outbreaks.“To be effective, mandatory vaccination at school entry would need to cover more than 40 percent of the population.”Smitha Mundasad, a BBC health correspondent said that vaccines “may have become a victim of their own success. Because they’re working so well and doing what they’re supposed to do, maybe people aren’t seeing the serious complications of […] measles anymore.”This may lead to people underestimating the seriousness of the disease and not believing vaccines are necessary.The fall in vaccination is also due to a study that was based on just 12 children drawing links between the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism, leading many people to be wary of vaccinating their children, despite this research being extremely flawed and later disproven and removed by the Lancet where it was first published.Social media is also helping to fuel anti vaccine debates through sharing low quality or inflammatory information.Health Secretary Matt Hancock stated that he was open to considering “all options” to help England raise its vaccination levels, which included bringing in compulsory vaccinations, although he said he did not necessarily want to reach that pointSources In recent years, we’ve witnessed a resurgence of measles cases even in countries where, according to World Health Organization guidelines, elimination should already have been achieved. This resurgence is due to suboptimal vaccination coverage levels.“In Italy, where measles incidence rates were among the highest, the government has made measles vaccination compulsory for children before they enter primary school.“We investigated the potential of this and other policies to reinforce immunization rates in seven high-income countries.”Dr. Filippo Trentini, First Author of the Studycenter_img Shutterstock | Kaspars GrinvaldsWhat is Measles?Measles is a viral disease that is highly contagious and is transmitted through droplets from the nose, mouth, or throat of people infected with the disease. Symptoms of measles progress from fevers, white spots inside the mouth, and bloodshot eyes, to a rash on the face and neck that spreads across the body.Although the infection can clear within 7 to 10 days, it can cause life-threatening complications including blindness, encephalitis (swelling of the brain) and pneumonia. Severe cases of measles are more likely to develop in malnourished, young children, or in people with suppressed immune systems like those living with HIV/AIDS or other diseases that compromise the immune system.Why is Measles an Issue?Despite the NHS stating that measles is now “uncommon in the UK because of the effectiveness of vaccination”, there has been a sharp increase in measles cases worldwide in recent years.Preliminary measles surveillance data for 2019 published by the World Health Organization (WHO) revealed a “clear trend” in measles outbreaks, with outbreaks currently occurring in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Madagascar, Myanmar, Philippines, Sudan, Thailand, and Ukraine.It also states that in 2017, an estimated 110,000 deaths were caused by measles, and mostly affected children under the age of 5. This is despite approximately 85 percent of the world’s children having one dose of the measles vaccine by the age of one.Researchers in Italy have suggested that vaccines for measles should be made compulsory to combat the fall in vaccination rates in several countries, from the US, Ireland, Australia, but particularly in the UK. Researchers from the Bruno Kessler Foundation and Bocconi University expressed concern about the fall in vaccination rates worldwide. Using computer modelling, they have predicted how many measles cases could occur between 2018 and 2050, detailed in a study published in BMC Medicine.The projections made in the study suggest that by 2050, if vaccination policies remain the same, the proportion of the population susceptible to measles would range from 3.7 percent in the UK to 9.3 percent in Italy. https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p06jns28/the-news-explained-why-is-there-a-measles-outbreak-in-europe https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/68/wr/mm6817e1.htm https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/measles/ https://www.who.int/immunization/diseases/measles/en/ https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/measleslast_img

Is it time to regulate targeted ads and the web giants that profit from

This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. If it’s free, you’re the productThis fundamental equation underpins an economic trade-off of free services in exchange for access to personal information and the right to display ads to users. Zuckerberg admitted that ads were not popular, saying “Even though some people don’t like ads, people really don’t like ads that aren’t relevant”. Zuckerberg didn’t rule out the possibility of paid, ad-free access to Facebook, but it was clear that its highly effective – and lucrative – business model was not going to be replaced any time soon.Saying that people don’t like ads is an understatement. There are very few people who like ads, relevant or not. In a survey conducted by consulting firm Deloitte in 2017, between 75% and 80% of respondents used at least one type of ad-blocking technology. This wasn’t just on a computer’s web browser or mobile phone, it was also using video recorders or smart TVs to skip ads on TV, or paying for music and movie streaming specifically to avoid ads.Even if ads do get through to social media users, their effectiveness is open to question – and it’s one that turns out to be difficult to answer. Advertising is used to achieve a number of different aims. For a business advertising to consumers, the aim may be to increase general “brand awareness” of the company and their products. Other ads may be trying to achieve a specific goal such as getting people to click on a website and buy a product or come into a physical store and do the same. Measuring the effectiveness of these ads will be different depending on the objective. The other factor is that social-media advertising is usually only part of an overall campaign that involves other channels such as YouTube, search-result ads, print, radio and TV. Again, picking out what benefits came from what specific activity further complicates the analysis. Citation: Is it time to regulate targeted ads and the web giants that profit from them? (2018, April 23) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-targetedads-webgiants-profit.html Targeted advertising: good for Facebook and Google, not so good for you. Credit: Shutterstock In the wake of Facebook’s massive breach of personal data of 87 million users, CEO Mark Zuckerberg answered questions from US politicians over two days of congressional hearings. These questions mostly focussed on the tight link between Facebook’s business model of selling targeted personalised advertising and its need to capture, and exploit, large amounts of personal information from its users. Facebook CEO defends advertising-supported business model Provided by The Conversation Explore further This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Lots of bucks, little bangFor Facebook and Google, the key metrics are how many people clicked on an ad and what happened after: Did the person end up buying the product or creating an account? The percentage of users who see an ad on Facebook and then click it is between 1% and 2%. Of those people, about 9% will take an action as a result of clicking. This means that if the ad were shown to 1,000 Facebook users, 10 would be expected to click the ad and only 1 would take any action. The average cost of this 1 person would be about US$19.Of the more than 5 million advertisers who use Facebook, it is absolutely certain that large numbers of them derive no benefits from the ads they buy. Given that Facebook’s advertising income for 2017 was US$40 billion, this represents a massive amount of money that is essentially wasted.Some businesses have realised that Facebook advertising brings minimal returns at best. In one survey of small businesses, 62% said their paid ads on Facebook were “missing the target” and not getting to the users that mattered.Facebook has run into other problems with its advertisers. One of the largest, Proctor and Gamble cut its budget for advertising by US$750 million over the last three years. In part this has been in response to what the company sees as the problems with digital advertising that is controlled by only two companies, Google and Facebook. Together, they’ve cornered more than 70% of digital advertising in the United States.Facebook and Google have upset advertisers for other reasons as well. Facebook has been sued for misrepresenting over two years how long millions of users were viewing videos, exaggerating the time by 60% to 80%. Major advertisers such as Verizon and Walmart stopped advertising on YouTube last year after they discovered that their ads were running next to extremist and hate-speech content.Is it time for an outright ban?In an April 2018 article in The New Republic, author David Dayen strongly argued that targeted advertising should be banned outright:”The surveillance economy should die. This manner of advertising doesn’t serve the public and it’s not even clear it serves advertisers. It facilitates monopoly, as those with the biggest data troves receive all the ad dollars.”Given all of the evidence of Google’s and Facebook’s self-serving behaviour, it’s hard not to agree. The majority of their users dislike advertising and will go to some effort to avoid seeing it. At the same time, a large proportion of businesses are spending money on ads that provide no benefit to them. Instead, the billions of dollars of advertising revenue benefits only Google and Facebook, not the economies in which they operate. Based on the available evidence, it appears that Google and Facebook will stop at nothing to exploit the personal information of every human being in their pursuit of profit.It is only a matter of time before governments start tackling the issue. Google and Facebook not only control the majority of digital advertising, they already control 25% of all advertising globally. And when targeted ads using personal data influence economic, social, and political beliefs and actions, there is a massive problem.

Uber back on the road in Vienna

Explore further Citation: Uber back on the road in Vienna (2018, April 27) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-uber-road-vienna.html © 2018 AFP This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. “We are delighted to announce that we can offer you our service again with immediate effect,” Uber Austria said in a statement.”In recent days… we have worked intensively on adjusting our procedures. We have also taken the time to listen attentively to our partners, users and drivers to become a good partner for Vienna.”The complaint against Uber was brought by the Taxi 40100 company that said the US firm was infringing competition rules in the Austrian capital.Ride-hailing services have met with protests from taxi drivers in numerous cities and varying levels of resistance from authorities around the world.Earlier this month, Uber suspended one of its services in Greece after tighter rules were introduced, while in March it halted operations in the Slovak capital Bratislava. Uber scales back Greek operations after law clampdown Uber said Friday it had resumed operations in Vienna, two days after a court ruling took the ride-hailing service off the road following a complaint from a local taxi firm. A complaint against Uber was brought by the Taxi 40100 company that said the US firm was infringing competition rules in the Austrian capital

Forgotten corner of Europe brought back to life thanks to artificial intelligence

first_img Explore further Big data shows people’s collective behavior follows strong periodic patterns A lost world in a former empire in Europe has been brought to life thanks to University of Bristol researchers who used artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to analyse 47,000 multilingual pages from newspapers dating back to 1873. 18th century map of the Inner Austrian districts of Görz and Trieste created between 1789 and 1797. Credit: University of Bristol The study, published in Historical Methods, aimed to discover whether historical changes could be detected from the collective content of local newspapers from the Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca. The findings reveal a series of political and cultural events which took place in a forgotten corner of the Austrian Empire that is now divided between Italy and Slovenia, some of which were unknown, until now.A team of computer scientists and a historian digitised microfilms of old multilingual newspapers from the County between 1873 to 1914. The images were then converted to text. The patterns that emerged from the automated analysis of 47,000 pages revealed the individual stories of thousands of people, but also the collective trends of a population in the years leading up to WW1 and the final years of that Empire.Professor Cristianini, Professor of Artificial Intelligence and lead author of the study, said: “Importantly, we get a glimpse in the last years of a world heading towards a new chapter in its history and during a period that transformed it beyond recognition. We see new technologies, new ideas, new economic opportunities, new cultural challenges and problems.”The findings highlight how the war transformed the city and its county into something entirely different. The front lines crossed through the city itself and the urban population was largely relocated. The annexation of the city by Italy was quickly followed by twenty years of fascism, another war, and finally the iron curtain that ran right through the County itself, partly separating the city centre and some of its neighbourhoods.Professor Cristianini added: “In this paper we have shown that, in the space of a few decades, the town embraced new ways to communicate, such as the cinema and the telephone, along with modes of transportation, like the car, the airplane, the bicycle and the train. Far from being a backwater of a decaying empire, this was a city with an eye on the future and an interest in new ideas – including political ones. It was, however, also a time in which new tensions emerged along ethnic lines and of rapid change, with problems and anxieties that sound very familiar to the modern ear.”It is also incredibly fortunate that the collection of newspapers in the Biblioteca Isontina library survived so many threats.” Citation: Forgotten corner of Europe brought back to life thanks to artificial intelligence (2018, June 7) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-06-forgotten-corner-europe-brought-life.html Provided by University of Bristol More information: Nello Cristianini et al. Large-scale content analysis of historical newspapers in the town of Gorizia 1873–1914, Historical Methods: A Journal of Quantitative and Interdisciplinary History (2018). DOI: 10.1080/01615440.2018.1443862 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img

Four Malaysian drug convicts face execution after Singapore rejects clemency petitions

first_img Related News Nation 18 May 2019 Surendran urges S’pore to spare M’sian drug mule, citing strong grounds for clemency Tags / Keywords: Malaysian , drug convicts , Singapore Nation 26 May 2019 Liew denies interfering with Singapore court decision to stay execution of Malaysian death row prisoner PETALING JAYA: Four Malaysians convicted of drug-related offences in Singapore face imminent execution after its president rejected the clemency petitions of up to 10 prisoners over the past week, says Lawyers For Liberty.Its adviser N. Surendran said in Singapore, the rejection of clemency petition is usually followed soon after by the prisoner’s execution.Hence, he said it is probable that the prisoners will be executed within weeks from now.Surendran said of the 10 prisoners, the four Malaysians were Datchinamurthy Kataiah, Gobi Avedian, Abdul Helmi Ab Halim and Rahmat.center_img Nation 23 May 2019 Malaysian on death row in Singapore granted stay of execution {{category}} {{time}} {{title}} Related News “The large and sudden number of clemency rejections are unprecedented and shocking. It indicates that Singapore is preparing for an execution binge, in total disregard of international legal norms and decent world opinion.”Singapore is doing so despite irrefutable evidence that hanging drug mules does not deter drug trafficking syndicates,” he said in a statement on Friday (July 12).Surendran also said he believed that there were more clemency petitions rejected than the information on the 10 prisoners that he has received.He added that the unusual number of simultaneous clemency rejections raises questions as to whether each prisoner’s case was duly considered by its Cabinet and president.Surendran also claimed that statements made by Singapore’s Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam suggested that Malaysian prisoners were being targeted, adding that it also showed that the Singapore government had already decided not to spare any drug offenders from execution.”This is illegal, as each clemency petition must be considered upon its individual merits,” he said.Surendran urged the Singapore government to halt the executions and to impose a moratorium upon all executions pending a thorough review of all the clemency rejections.He also called on the government to urgently make necessary representations to Singapore on behalf of the four Malaysians facing imminent execution.”The Malaysians form the largest group of foreign nationals now facing execution in Changi,” he said.last_img