These antibodies could protect against Ebola’s harms, but results come with a caveat

first_img About the Author Reprints Scientists have developed new antibodies that could potentially neutralize two of the deadliest types of Ebola virus, but that news comes with a catch — the immunotherapies have only been proven in a mouse model.The research, published Wednesday in Scientific Reports, is a first step toward developing a treatment for Ebola and Marburg viruses. Scientists at the Army’s Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases and Albert Einstein College of Medicine developed antibodies that protected mice against Sudan and Zaire Ebola viruses even after they were exposed. The Sudan and Zaire species of Ebola virus are particularly threatening, accounting for 95 percent of Ebola-related deaths between 1976 and 2012.“While this result is encouraging, the therapy must first be tested in larger animal models (including non-human primates) before we have any idea if they could be used for human therapy,” biochemist and study author Jonathan Lai of Albert Einstein College of Medicine said.advertisement Ebola virus isolated from patient blood samples obtained in Mali. NIAID Tags antibodiesEbolaimmunotherapy Quick TakeThese antibodies could protect against Ebola’s harms, but results come with a caveat Megan Thielking [email protected]ws.com center_img By Megan Thielking Jan. 13, 2016 Reprints News Editor For more Quick Takes, subscribe to the free Morning Rounds newsletter. @meggophone Thomas Geisbert, who studies Ebola at the University of Texas Medical Branch, said the results from a small trial on mice give him pause, too. “The mouse model has been historically notorious for giving false results and false hope,” he explained. “I’ve got shelves full of things that protect mice against Ebola but don’t work on monkeys.”Lai said the research team will next try to engineer other antibodies that can be combined with the new discoveries to make a cocktail that could treat more types of the virus. But that research will take a hefty amount of time and resources, meaning the research results could be far down the road.advertisementlast_img read more

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Council to push for best for community outcomes in Inland Rail EIS response

first_imgCouncil to push for best for community outcomes in Inland Rail EIS response Toowoomba Regional Council will seek the best outcomes for the Region in its response to the Inland Rail Border to Gowrie (B2G) Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).The State Government’s Office of the Coordinator-General (OCG) has released the B2G EIS for public notification, with submissions closing on 19 April 2021.The EIS has been prepared by the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) which is delivering the project on behalf of the Federal Government.Toowoomba Region Mayor Cr Paul Antonio said Council had been working hard since the start of the Inland Rail project to ensure the project delivers significant benefits for the Region and substantially mitigates the impacts a major project such as this brings to our Region. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:Australia, Australian, Australian Rail Track Corporation, Border, community, council, Federal, federal government, Government, Impact, Inland Rail, outcomes, project, Toowoomba, Toowoomba Regional Councillast_img read more

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JCA Urges Customers to Vote in Public Sector Competition

first_imgJCA Urges Customers to Vote in Public Sector Competition Finance & Public ServiceJanuary 21, 2015Written by: Elaine Hartman Reckord Advertisements JCA Urges Customers to Vote in Public Sector CompetitionJIS News | Presented by: PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQualityundefinedSpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreenPlay Photo: JIS PhotographerActing Director of Public Relations at the Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA), Natalee Cameron, outlines activities for Customs Week 2015 at a JIS ‘Think Tank’ on January 20. RelatedInflation Rate Slows in 2014 FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail center_img RelatedCustoms Week to be Observed from January 25 to 30 The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) is appealing to its customers and stakeholders to participate in the Public Sector Customer Service Competition by voting for the best public sector entity and customer service officer.Persons can vote by filling out the nomination forms and placing them in boxes at the entity or online via a voting link on the agency’s website www.jacustoms.gov.jm. Persons can also vote via email [email protected] or by using the toll-free line 1-888-991-2752 or voting online at www.cabinet.gov.jm.Winners of the competition, spearheaded by the Public Sector Transformation and Modernisation Division, will be decided by public vote and a panel of judges.Speaking at a Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank held on Tuesday (January 20), Acting Director of Public Relations, JCA, Natalee Cameron, said that “voting is slow” but steady at the entity.“It is slow but we still visit the ports and encourage persons to vote. When persons visit the ports or the airport, they tend to want to get their goods and leave….it is not that they don’t want to participate but sometimes time is against them,” she said.Miss Cameron said the agency will also be encouraging persons to vote at the upcoming biannual Information Exposition and Appreciation Day scheduled to take place on Thursday (January 29) at the Customs Courtyard, Newport East, in Kingston.The exposition, which begins at 10:00 a.m., is part of activities to celebrate Customs Week 2015 being observed from January 25 to 30 under the theme: ‘Coordinated Border Management – An Inclusive Approach for Connecting Stakeholders’. RelatedGovt Receives $350 Million Grant for Public Sector Transformation Story HighlightsThe Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) is appealing to its customers and stakeholders to participate in the Public Sector Customer Service Competition by voting for the best public sector entity and customer service officer.Persons can vote by filling out the nomination forms and placing them in boxes at the entity or online via a voting link on the agency’s website www.jacustoms.gov.jm.Winners of the competition, spearheaded by the Public Sector Transformation and Modernisation Division, will be decided by public vote and a panel of judges.last_img read more

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Homeless woman arrested for sitting in front of doorway

first_imgTags :crimeCrime Watchshare on Facebookshare on Twitteradd a commentTrump birth control coverage rules blocked nationwideLos Angeles teachers are striking but schools are still openYou Might Also LikeBriefsLos Angeles Sheriff’s deputy accused of destroying evidence of 2019 assaultAssociated Press12 hours agoCrimeCRIME WATCHNewsCrime WatchGuest Author3 days agoCrimeFeaturedKnife-wielding woman arrested during L.A. Councilman’s speechGuest Author4 days agoCrimeCRIME WATCHNewsCrime WatchGuest Author7 days agoCrimeFeaturedHomeless man loses an eye to BB gun assaultGuest Author1 week agoCrimeCRIME WATCHNewsCrime WatchGuest Author1 week ago HomeNewsCrimeHomeless woman arrested for sitting in front of doorway Jan. 15, 2019 at 4:30 amCrimeHomeless woman arrested for sitting in front of doorwaynews2 years agocrimeCrime Watch On January 03, 2019 at about 4:37 a.m. While patrolling the area of the 1600 block of 7th Street, officers saw several subjects sitting in the alcove/doorway of 1653 7th St., United States Postal Services, in violation of a municipal code. Officers spoke with all of the subjects.  Officers recognized one of the subjects from previous contacts at the same location and issued several citations for a similar violation. A computer check revealed multiple Santa Monica warrants totaling $90,000.00. The subject was arrested and transported to SMPD Jail for booking. Karen Marie Jeademann, 52, homeless, was arrested for sitting/lying doorway during prohibited hours and warrants. Bail was set at $90,500.last_img read more

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Study finds palm oil industry mimics Big Tobacco on health issues

first_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Article published by Hans Nicholas Jong Agriculture, Deforestation, Environment, Fires, Forest Fires, Forests, Haze, Health, Oil Palm, Palm Oil, Plantations, Public Health, Rainforest Deforestation, Rainforest Destruction, Rainforests, Tropical Forests A study published in the WHO Bulletin has likened the palm oil industry’s tactics to those of the tobacco and alcohol lobbies to obscure the direct and indirect health impacts of the commodity.The study found mixed messages in the scientific literature about the health impacts of palm oil, not least because several studies have been authored by an industry lobby group.The indirect health impacts were clearer, and included illnesses caused by smoke from the slash-and-burn clearing of forests for palm plantations.The researchers called for a multipronged approach to address these impacts, while acknowledging that replacing palm oil with other vegetable oils in the same volumes would require far more land. JAKARTA — It’s responsible for pushing a product found in half of the most common food and consumer items, but the $60 billion palm oil industry has largely evaded the kind of public health scrutiny focused on the tobacco and alcohol industries.Now, a new study published in the Bulletin of the World Health Organization finds that the palm oil industry is cribbing from the same playbook as the other two in playing down the health impacts of its ubiquitous commodity.“We need to mitigate the influence of the palm oil and related industries on public health policies and programmes,” lead author Sowmya Kadandale of UNICEF and her colleagues write in their study, “The palm oil industry and non-communicable diseases.”“The relationship between the palm oil and processed food industries, and the tactics they employ, resembles practices adopted by the tobacco and alcohol industries,” they write. “However, the palm oil industry receives comparatively little scrutiny.”An oil palm fruitlet. A new study finds that the palm oil industry is deploying similar tactics with the tobacco and alcohol industries to play down the health impacts of its ubiquitous commodity. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.Industry-authored studiesPrevious research has linked consumption of palm oil — found in products ranging from Oreo cookies to Nutella chocolate spread — to increased mortality from heart disease caused by narrowed arteries, raised levels of “bad” cholesterol, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, and other adverse effects.The new study also warns of a “cocktail effect,” in which palm oil on its own may not be detrimental to health, but could be damaging when combined with other ingredients used in highly processed foods. And the food industry’s marketing of these “ultra-processed” products to children is reminiscent of how the tobacco and alcohol industries target young people, the researchers say.But the injection into the scientific literature of studies authored by the industry itself has muddled the message on palm oil’s health impacts.“Four of the nine studies in our literature search showing overwhelmingly positive health associations were authored by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board, again drawing parallels with the tobacco and alcohol industries and calling into question the credibility of claims in favour of increased palm oil consumption,” the researchers write.Even for informed consumers, however, avoiding products with palm oil can be difficult. The commodity and its derivatives can be listed under one of 200 names — a degree of tolerance not afforded to other vegetable oils such as peanut, sesame and soy oils, which some jurisdictions require to be explicitly labeled.“With its inclusion in many everyday products, unclear food labelling and sometimes conflicting information on health impacts, it can be difficult to know how to identify palm oil in foods,” the study says. “Consumers may be unaware of what they are eating or its safety.”Given the obfuscation around its health impacts and labeling, the researchers say, there needs to be more independent research into the former and stricter requirements around the latter.Fires engulf a palm oil plantation in Rokan Hilir district, Riau, Indonesia. Massive conversion of forests to palm oil plantations has been linked to the annual fires razing Indonesia. Image by Zamzami/Mongabay Indonesia.Environmental and labor abusesThere’s less confusion, though, about the indirect health impacts of the commodity, namely through the cultivation of oil palms.Indonesia and Malaysia together produce 85 percent of the world’s supply of palm oil, but that prolific output has come at the expense of vast swaths of rainforest, often cleared by burning to make way for industrial-scale palm plantations.“Since the 1990s, air pollution from slash-and-burn practices have affected the health of populations in South-East Asia, especially the most vulnerable groups of the population, such as infants and children,” the study says. “Haze episodes, even across country borders, have been linked to premature deaths and increased respiratory illness as well as cardiovascular diseases.”Infants and children are especially vulnerable to air pollution from such practices.There’s also the persistent issue of labor abuses in the palm oil industry, particularly in Indonesia, where the use of child labor remains a concern, the researchers write.The study says palm oil’s health impacts, both direct and indirect, need to be subjected to greater scrutiny, given an anticipated boom in demand for the commodity to replace trans fats that the WHO hopes to eliminate from the global food supply by 2023.A range of food products for sale at a supermarket – mainly cakes, bread, and other baked goods, many of them containg a surprising amount of Palm Oil. © WWF / Richard StonehouseIndustry responseSupporters of the palm oil industry in Indonesia and Malaysia have roundly criticized the study, saying it fails to present a balanced picture.In Indonesia, a group of researchers affiliated with the industry said the study didn’t attempt to weigh the benefits of palm oil against its shortcomings. They also said that none of the study’s authors — Kadandale, along with Robert Marten of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and Richard Smith of the University of Exeter’s College of Medicine and Health — were palm oil scientists. They added it wasn’t clear if any of the reviewers were palm oil scientists, thus raising questions about bias.The Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC), a marketing lobby, shared a similar view.“The authors conveniently ignored key palm oil publications in respected journals and cherry-picked a handful that fitted their hypothesis,” the council’s CEO, Kalyana Sundram, said as reported in the Malaysian daily The Star.The Malaysian Estate Owners’ Association (MEOA), which represents plantation owners, also called the study biased for scrutinizing palm oil in isolation without comparing it to more than a dozen other vegetable oils and animal fats.“Since WHO highlighted palm oil’s impact on planetary health (deforestation, loss of biodiversity and pollution), it should also publish an unbiased comparison of how all the 17 major oils and fats fare in these regards,” the MEOA said as reported in The Edge Financial Daily.“This will be of great assistance to nutritionists and environmentalists globally and also allow consumers to make an informed opinion. A study picking on palm oil alone does not do justice to WHO’s reputation and compromises its integrity,” it said.Global demand for products like palm oil is responsible for depleting tropical forest cover, with often grave health consequences for local communities. Photo by Rhett A. Butler.ImplicationsFor all the criticism that surrounds palm oil, there’s a growing recognition that promoting any of the other vegetable oil alternatives to replace it would be even worse for the environment, given the high per-hectare yields of palm compared to soy, rapeseed or other oil crops.The authors of the new study acknowledge as much, suggesting that producing oil from these other crops in the same volumes as palm oil today would require far more land. This echoes the findings of a report by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which last year warned that existing vegetable oils that could theoretically replace palm oil would be far more damaging to the environment because of the need for up to nine times as much land to produce the same amount of oil.“[W]e need to carefully consider practical policy options and their implications,” Kadandale and colleagues write. “Policymakers may therefore need to consider ways to reduce the demand for oils more specifically and for unhealthy ultra-processed foods more broadly.”The study calls for more independent and comprehensive research into palm oils health impacts and the “cocktail effect”; scaling back the industry’s influence on public health policies and programs; and tackling the environmental and labor abuses associated with oil palm plantations. Banner image:  Palm oil fresh fruit bunches in Indonesia. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.last_img read more

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Limited-Release SHAG Tiki Room Designer Ears Now Available

first_imgShare This!We’re guessing that unlike the Tiki Room Birds who are here every day, these new limited-edition SHAG Mouse Ears will be a hot seller. They are priced at $58 (which is a relative bargain compared with some other releases we’ve seen). Even better, they’re really cute. You can find these throughout Disney Parks and on the ShopDisney website. What do you think of these? Let us know in the comments.last_img

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50-up for Bok coach Jake White

first_img28 September 2007When South Africa takes to the field in their final Rugby World Cup Pool A match against the United States in Montpellier on Sunday, Jake White will reach the 50-match milestone as Springbok coach, the first man to achieve the feat.A victory over the Americans would lift White’s winning percentage to 64 percent, third among coaches since South Africa rejoined world rugby in 1992. Difficult startWhen the former Jeppe schoolmaster took over the reins of the Springbok side, it was at a low point in the team’s fortunes; they had exited the 2003 World Cup at the quarterfinals’ stage, beaten 29-9 by New Zealand, and the Boks’ image was under the spotlight after the controversial Kamp Staaldraad became public knowledge.White, though, was eager to take on the challenge of one of the toughest coaching jobs in South Africa, assuming a position that had claimed a fair number of victims, as coaches left the post before their contracts were up.One of his first messages to the players was that they were going to win the World Cup in 2007. Now, four years on, and after nearly having lost his job at the end of 2006, White is in charge of a confident team, one that many experts believe is the only side capable of challenging New Zealand for World Cup glory.Outstanding performancesWith the quarterfinals approaching, two matches stand out as outstanding performances at the 2007 World Cup: the All Blacks’ 76-14 humbling of Italy, and, arguably more impressive, the Springboks’ 36-0 whitewash of defending champions England.The Kiwis, in their win, showed a fantastic cutting edge, while South Africa, in their victory, exhibited powerful, controlled, and focused form.The lightly-regarded Americans, winless so far, and facing what is close to a full strength Bok line-up, aren’t expected to cause White’s men many problems. The coach has his team in the exact position he wants them to be in, and a win will likely mean a match against Wales in the last eight.PlayoffsShould South Africa beat the Welsh – and they have previously lost only once to Wales – they will tackle either France or Argentina in the semi-finals.The French have provided the Springboks with some tough matches in the past, but the Pumas have never beaten them, although the South American Jaguars, comprised most of Argentinian players, once beat the Boks 21-12 in Bloemfontein in 1982, with the legendary Hugo Porta scoring all his team’s points.Sunday’s match will be only the third between South Africa and the USA. In the two previous encounters, SA won 38-7 in 1981 and 43-20 in 2001, both times on American soil.Team selectionCoach White and his fellow selectors have opted for a lineup that closely mirrors the one that overpowered England.There is one change in the backline, with Akona Ndungane getting his first run of the tournament after overcoming a chest injury. He replaces JP Pietersen, who moves to the bench.Up front, Schalk Burger returns to action, having served his two-match ban for a dangerous tackle against Samoa. He, however, won’t be in action in his regular position on the flank. Instead, he will pack down at number-eight.Juan Smith, his regular partner at flank, will join forces with the industrious Wikus van Heerden.Albert van den BergIn a somewhat surprising move, White has opted to break up the Blue Bulls’ dominating second row, selecting Victor Matfield, but partnering him with Albert van den Berg and not Bakkies Botha.Van den Berg, who made his Springbok debut way back in 1999 against New Zealand, will win his 50th Springbok cap.Os du Randt, when he takes on the Eagles, will have played against more countries than any other Springbok; it will be the 18th nation he faces, breaking a tie with Joost van der Westhuizen.First-choice teamIn the Boks’ last outing, a 30-25 victory over Tonga, it became clear that there is a distinct difference between the first-choice lineup and the second-choice team, especially when one remembers the struggles of a similar selection against Irish side Connacht, a match that SA won only 18-0.The bench, boasting an incredible 311 caps, helped quell the Tongan bid to upset the hierarchy of world rugby, and all the players who served as substitutes in that match will start on Sunday. In total, there are 586 caps among the starters and 185 among the reserves.Starting FifteenPercy Montgomery, Akona Ndungane, Jaque Fourie, Francois Steyn, Bryan Habana, Butch James Fourie du Preez, Schalk Burger, Juan Smith, Wikus van Heerden, Victor Matfield, Albert van den Berg, BJ Botha, John Smit (c), and Os du RandtBenchBismarck du Plessis, CJ van der Linde, Bakkies Botha, Bob Skinstad, Ruan Pienaar, Andre Pretorius, and JP Pietersen Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

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Poll: Do You Think Dell Will Buy Cloudera?

first_imgCloudera has long been seen as a potential acquisition target. Last year GigaOm’s Derrick Harris questioned whether Cloudera was allying its way to an acquisition. Earlier this year RedMonk co-founder and analyst James Governor wrote that it was “highly likely” that HP would make a play for Cloudera.This week Cloudera entered a new alliance with Dell to offer a pre-configured stack of hardware and software for running Apache Hadoop clusters. Also, last year Dell fought a bidding war with HP over storage vendor 3Par. HP ending up winning even after Dell released a press release stating that it would acquire 3Par. That’s got to smart.Do you think Dell will make a play for Cloudera? Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts klint finleycenter_img 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#cloud#Products Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more

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Real Madrid Arsenal LA Galaxy Boca Juniors — In One Giant Power

The English Premier League is the only league among the 24 that are part of FiveThirtyEight’s club soccer predictions that has six teams in the top 20 of the global team rankings (although it has no teams in the overall top five). However, these rankings suggest that the Premier League’s also-rans would not compete particularly well with the mid-table of other major leagues. Everton, the seventh EPL side, sit 47th. This places the Toffees behind 10 German Bundesliga clubs and 13 teams from La Liga. Even Atalanta, the seventh club in Italy’s Serie A, places above Everton.To explain why this happens requires some discussion of the method itself. League strength is compared in two ways; first, based on how well clubs from different leagues have done in direct competition with one another, such as in the Champions League. And second, the estimated market value of a team’s players, drawn from the website Transfermarkt. The former factor — head-to-head competition — receives much more emphasis when leagues play each other frequently, as teams from the top European leagues do in the Champions League and Europa League. That gives the big European leagues a more natural hierarchy.The relatively poor showing of the Premier League, compared with La Liga and the Bundesliga, is notable particularly because of the massive economic advantage that the English league holds over its continental competitors. The Premier League’s domestic TV contract pays in the range of a billion dollars more per year than Spain’s or Germany’s.1The new domestic Premier League TV contract is estimated to be worth $2.20 billion per year, compared with $1.04 billion for La Liga and $1.36 billion for the Bundesliga. The estimated values of Premier League clubs run about 20 percent higher than the values of clubs in the Bundesliga or Serie A and about 10 percent higher than La Liga. But these values have not translated into strong performances by Premier League teams in European competition. Judged over recent inter-league competition, La Liga’s performance has been about 27 percent better than the Premier League’s, while the Bundesliga’s performance has been 20 percent better. Despite its financial advantage, the Premier League has won only one European Cup in the past four years, compared with seven for La Liga sides. During that time, 19 teams from La Liga have advanced to the quarterfinals of the Europa or Champions League, and 10 Bundesliga sides have done the same. Only six Premier League clubs, barely more than one per year, have advanced to the final eight of the major club competitions.Just as Premier League sides come in below similar clubs from Germany and Spain because of the English league’s struggles in European competition, the continuing failure of MLS clubs to advance in the CONCACAF Champions League leaves American and Canadian sides behind the best teams in Mexico. Other than Toronto FC (171st), no MLS side places above the top 10 teams from Liga MX.The rankings further suggest that the best clubs from South America, such as Argentina’s Boca Juniors (81st) and Brazil’s Corinthians (88th) and Cruzeiro (99th) could hang with the teams at the bottom of the Premier League such as Watford (93rd) and Crystal Palace (102nd). Meanwhile, MLS teams would generally fall in either the second or third divisions in the English pyramid. NYCFC — the second-highest ranking MLS side, at 259th — rates below the top 10 teams in the Championship.MLS still has a long way to go to match up with the top levels of club soccer. These ratings and rankings will move as the various international tournaments play out through the fall, winter and spring. If sides from the Premier League or MLS mean to move up the rankings, they will need to have better results in direct competition with sides from other leagues. When comparing club soccer teams, it’s fairly easy to figure out who is the best of the best. The most talented players in the world play in a handful of European leagues, and the best teams of these leagues face off each year in the Champions League.Judging below this level is more difficult.How do you compare the English club Arsenal, which got through the group stage of the most recent Champions League but lost in the first round of the knockouts, with Celta Vigo of Spain, a semifinalist in the Europa League? And what about the European teams that didn’t play anyone outside their nation’s borders — like Stoke City in England and Freiburg in Germany?Even more difficult is comparing across continents. How well would the best MLS clubs do if they played in the Championship, the English second division?FiveThirtyEight has a new way of answering these questions. The global club soccer rankings compare 426 men’s teams that compete in leagues across Europe, North America and South America. As you might expect, the top three are Real Madrid of Spain’s La Liga, Bayern Munich of Germany’s Bundesliga and Barcelona, also of La Liga. It gets more interesting from there. read more

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Ohio States Deshaun Thomas ready to emerge for mens basketball

Ohio State sophomore forward Deshaun Thomas is a shooter, but not in the same way Jon Diebler, former OSU guard and all-time Big Ten leader in made three pointers, was. Thomas is a shooter because he likes to shoot – a lot. In high school, Thomas shot whenever he wanted because that’s what his team asked him to do. When he graduated, he was the No. 3-leading scorer in the history of the basketball-rich state of Indiana. So when Thomas came to OSU as a freshman, Thomas did what he had always done. He kept shooting. He was shooting so much that coach Thad Matta had to tell him to slow down, but at the same time he didn’t want to discourage Thomas to the point that he lost confidence. “He’s one of the best scorers in the nation,” OSU sophomore forward James “JD” Weatherspoon said. “You can’t take that away from his game. He’s going to knock down shots. It’s what he does.” Thomas averaged 7.5 points a game in an average of 14 minutes of action as a freshman last year. His ability to score a high volume of points in a short amount of time earned him the nickname of “microwave offense.” This year, with the departure of seniors Diebler, David Lighty and Dallas Lauderdale, who started the majority of the games last year, Thomas plans to step into a starting role for the upcoming season. It’s a role Matta, along with Thomas’s teammates, said he’s grown to accept. “He’s got a much better understanding of how to play,” Matta said. “He understands the importance of the defensive end of it. He understands the importance of the pass, the moving, the rebounding. I’ve been very, very pleased with his progress.” Matta also said Thomas has learned about when to shoot and when to pass. “The other day in the workout he threw a pass away and one of the coaches started to say something,” Matta said. “I said, ‘Whoa, whoa, whoa. He passed. I’ll teach him how to connect the dots.’” Senior guard William Buford laughed when asked about Thomas shooting too much, but said it was a thing of the past. “No, not no more,” Buford said. “He used to. You know he used to. He’s learning like what’s a good shot, what’s a bad shot. He’s passing more. He’s just a smarter basketball player.” But that doesn’t mean Thomas is going to stop shooting anytime soon or ditch the “microwave” mentality. Thomas embraces it. “I’m going to go out like everybody call me — the microwave,” Thomas said. “I’m trying to heat up at any minute so I’m just going to be the same old me with more time out there and having fun.” More than just shooting, Thomas has worked on the physical aspect of the game as well and has taken full advantage of the Buckeyes’ offseason-conditioning program, Matta said the changes are noticeable. “You can obviously look at him and tell a lot of things have happened to him over the summer,” Matta said. “It’s amazing how he looks this year compared to how he looked last year.” The Buckeyes open their season Nov. 11 against Wright State at 9 p.m. and with the beginning of a new season, Thomas said he’s ready to begin his next chapter too. “I’m here to show everybody what I really got,” Thomas said. read more

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