Now that the football season is in and world cup fever is prevalent, has anyone ever wondered what the favorite football moves of our netas are? Ashwin S. Kumar of The UnReal Times brings you this exclusive compilation:Arvind Kejriwal – Bicycle KickNo surprises here. Quite like his politics, Kejriwal’s favorite football move is the one where you do a palti (turn upside down) and kick the ball strongly to score a goal, after teaching to fellow footballers that they should block the ball with their chests, get it down and kick straight.Priyanka Gandhi – Penalty kick at the shootout stageQuite like her political stints, Priyanka loves to come in right at the very end of a contest, steal all the limelight and try to get a few balls into the goal post.Rajeev Shukla – HeaderQuite like how it is in real life, where Rajeev Shukla is seen butting his head into a plethora of scenarios, be it being a politician or a BCCI honcho or a journalist or a movie financier or a..(well, the list is endless), Rajeev Shukla’s favorite football shot is to stick his bulky head out and use it to steer the ball, regardless of which football team he plays for.Rahul Gandhi – Pass Rahul Gandhi is consistent everywhere and understandably, on the football field too, it is not surprising that he just loves to pass the ball to the nearest available team-mate each time it comes to him. Often, his own team mates prevent the ball from coming to him though.Narendra Modi – Free kickadvertisementNarendra Modi is someone who loves scenarios where the stage is all set for him to come and deliver a mighty blow, while his team-mates and subordinate toil hard and get their hands, err..feet dirty. Evidently, even in football, Modi loves the ball being set up for him at a vantage point, from which he has to strategically pass it on to his striker, as in a free kick. Otherwise, he loves to block the ball by exposing his full 56-inch chest and getting it on the ground.Lalu Prasad – Pull backLalu Prasad has been infamous for pulling things backwards when he’s at the helm and it is no different in football too – a master of pulling the ball back skillfully.Sanjay Jha – Self-goalEach time he comes on TV to defend his party, he costs it a few more votes, thanks to his amazingly crafted self-goals. It is a similar situation on the football field too.
From K J M VarmaBeijing, May 5 (PTI) Flexing muscles, China kicked off military exercises in the disputed South China Sea, east Indian Ocean and West Pacific involving advanced warships, helicopters and “special warfare” soldiers.Three naval ships of Chinas Nanhai Fleet left a naval port in Sanya, Hainan Province yesterday, kicking off an annual combat drill in the South China Sea, east Indian Ocean and West Pacific, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.The three ships include missile destroyer Hefei, missile frigate Sanya and supply ship Honghu.They will later be joined by missile destroyers Lanzhou and Guangzhou, as well as missile frigate Yulin, which are now carrying out other duties.With three helicopters and dozens of “special warfare” soldiers, the fleet will be separated into three groups that will sail to areas of the South China Sea, the east Indian Ocean and the west Pacific, to conduct varied drills.The fleet will mobilise naval air force, garrison forces in the Xisha and Nansha islands, and forces of the Beihai Fleet along the way to take part in the drill.The drill aims to enhance combat readiness and practise coordination between ships and aircraft, and other forces, the navy said.China claims almost the whole of the South China Sea – a major shipping lane rich in natural resources, resulting in overlapping claims with several other Asian nations like Vietnam and the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei.They accuse China of illegally reclaiming land in contested areas to create artificial islands with facilities for military use.advertisementOver half of the worlds commercial shipping passes through the Indo-Pacific waterways ? including one-third of the worlds liquefied natural gas. PTI KJV SAI
Top-ranked Pakistan got off to a flying start in the Twenty20 tri-series with a thumping 74-run win over depleted Zimbabwe on Sunday.Zimbabwe, going into the series without five top players because of a pay dispute with the country’s cricket board, was bowled out for 108 in 17.5 overs after Pakistan had made a strong 182-4.Opening batsman Fakhar Zaman (61) scored his second Twenty20 international century before Asif Ali blazed four sixes in his robust unbeaten 41 off 21 balls that advanced Pakistan’s total.Zimbabwe’s batting crumbled against Pakistan’s experienced spinners as Mohammad Hafeez (2-3), Mohammad Nawaz (2-11) and Shadab Khan (1-29) shared five wickets between them.Tarisai Musakanda top scored with 43 and was one of the three batsmen to reach double figures.”The way Zaman, Asif, and Malik did the job for us … it looked like a good batting pitch,” Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed said.”The ball did not come (onto the bat) in the first innings, but in the second it came on nicely. Credit goes to the bowlers, especially Usman and Nawaz.”Zimbabwe also suffered another blow when Kyle Jarvis couldn’t come out to bat after injuring his right hand during fielding.Jarvis tried to hold onto a difficult catch at long on that could have dismissed Zaman but ended up being taken to hospital for an X-ray examination for a suspected broken bone in his right thumb.”The only bright point was winning the toss,” Zimbabwe’s captain Hamilton Masakadza said.”They had a good Powerplay and put us under pressure and I thought we gave them 20 runs extra.”advertisementZimbabwe bowlers seemed to have controlled Pakistan’s strong batting lineup in the first half of the innings when the visitors scored 78-3 in 10 overs.But Zaman and Malik (37 not out) accelerated with a 44-run fourth-wicket stand before Asif’s clean hitting allowed Pakistan to score 62 runs off the last 32 balls.Zimbabwe, which is ranked No. 12, never got its chase going and lost wickets at regular intervals with only Musaknada showing some grit at the top.Solomon Mire, opening the batting, struggled in scoring 27 off 29 balls before falling to left-arm spinner Nawaz.The chase completely fell apart after Musaknada was caught at mid-off in the 17th over and Hafeez, bowling for the first time since his bowling action was cleared in May, grabbed the last two wickets off his five deliveries.Pakistan will take on Australia in the second match of the series on Monday.
India fast bowler Shardul Thakur is facing a long road to recovery but is targeting a return to the national side in the ODI series against Australia, early next year.Thakur made his Test debut against the West Indies in Hyderabad after receiving his Test cap from head coach Ravi Shastri and bowled 1.4 overs before leaving the field with what seemed like a groin injury at the time.It was later confirmed that Thakur had suffered a right abductor tendon injury and was ruled out for the remainder of the Test match and the ongoing ODI series. He was replaced by fast bowler Umesh Yadav in the ODI squad.Thakur has now confirmed that he won’t be able to recover in time for the first-two legs of the Australia tour next month but will target a return to the side in the ODI series in January 2019.Shardul Thakur becomes India’s 294th Test cricketer and then walks off with groin injury”Even if I try hard, I won’t be able to get fit before the second Test in Australia (in Perth from December 14),” Thakur was quoted as saying by the Indian Express.”A place in the T20Is or the Tests will be difficult. I will be eyeing the one-dayers instead. Let’s see how my rehab goes. I will continue with my training for the next seven weeks,” Thakur said.Last month Thakur was also ruled out of the Asia Cup in the UAE after complaining of “right hip and groin soreness”. He was replaced by Siddharth Kaul in the side after playing the first game against Hong Kong.advertisementUpon his return to India, he played one List A game, a Vijay Hazare Trophy match for Mumbai against Punjab, before being called up to the Test squad and suffering the adductor damage.There has been considerable debate as to whether Thakur was fully fit and proper rehabilitation was done before naming him in the Test squad. But the 27-year-old insists that the two injuries are not related in any way.”The injury from the Asia Cup was different to this one. During the Test match, I felt like my muscle was torn off. I started limping and when Virat (Kohli) asked me what was wrong, I told him it felt like a tear,” Thakur added.India’s tour of Australia begins on November 21 with a three-match T20I series. The first Test starts on December 6, while the first of three ODIs is scheduled for January 12.
Koy Gear Aims to Revolutionize Men’s Everyday Apparel Stance gained exclusive rights to the fiber realized the attributes of Butter Blend ticked all the boxes for the perfect underwear (fabric that won’t make you hot or cold, no wedgies, etc.). Stance mixed the casein fabric with Modal, a partially synthetic cellulose fiber, to create the final equation for Butter Blend.Bonus: The casein comes from a waste stream, not a food supply, and is therefore eco-friendly.In 2015, Stance ran their Butter Blend through the Kawabata evaluation method to test for surface friction and roughness of the fabric. “Ours had the softest hand out of any organic or semi-organic fabric,” Shupe says.Today, Stance uses Butter Blend for its boxers, boxer briefs, and “Wholester” underwear models, as well as a few pairs of socks and men’s tees. The company is also applying the tech to a new T-shirt, which will be vegan and use amino acids that come from seaweed instead of casein. 14 Scandinavian Clothing Brands You Need to Know Patagonia Goes 100% Sustainable with New Line Called Shell, Yeah! Editors’ Recommendations Is your underwear made of milk?Well, it should be. California-based sock and underwear brand, Stance, boasts a propriety Butter Blend yarn made from casein, a protein byproduct of milk and cheese. The result is super-soft men’s underwear that is thermoregulating, elastic, and so comfortable you can’t tell you’re wearing them.Yes, Stance’s Butter Blend feels like butter — like someone rubbed butter on your thighs and all you feel is something slightly smooth and luxurious on your legs. It’s precisely how we want our underwear to make us feel.“Protein just feels great. It has a great hand and balanced PH,” says Taylor Shupe, Stance co-founder and chief product officer. “I’m confident Butter Blend is one of the most comfortable yarns in the world.”Stance/FacebookBest-known for creative socks and A-list “Punks and Poets” ambassadors like James Harden and Rihanna, Stance planted its underwear flag in 2015, introducing the new category with this magically soft and surprisingly old-school fabric. Shupe and his team actually discovered the basis of Butter Blend during development for new high-end socks. The team came across old tech developed in the 1930s for a semi-synthetic cashmere. “It was this casein fiber,” Shupe says.“In WWI, wool manufacturers were in a deficit so they produced this semi-synthetic wool out of milk,” Shupe tells The Manual. “But they didn’t have all the tech at the time to make the fabric strong or robust. But it was soft. Since there wasn’t hair in the yarn, it didn’t cause itching or irritation.”About 20 years ago, a new process made the material stronger. “But not many companies knew how to produce it,” Shupe adds. “There was one person in Europe and one in China that stumbled upon this forgotten art.” The Best Fun Socks for Men to Spruce Up Your Footwear Game The Best Men’s No-Show Socks to Keep Your Feet Happy and Stink-Free
Acadian and francophone Nova Scotians will have a say in determining the priority French-language services to be provided by the provincial government. Consultations that will lead to the development of regulations for the French-language Services Act are now underway. Those regulations will outline how provincial government services are to be provided to French-speaking Nova Scotians. The Office of Acadian Affairs has been working with members of the Fédération Acadienne de la Nouvelle-Écosse (FANE) — a cross-section of Nova Scotia’s Francophone and Acadian organizations — to develop a process for obtaining community input. The first step in this process is a day-long consultation session, to be held Thursday, May 25, with FANE members. “Government offers a large number of services and programs and we want to make sure that the ones provided in French are the ones the community most wants to see,” said Chris d’Entremont, Minister of Acadian Affairs. “Our discussion with FANE and its members will provide us with the insights we need to prepare draft regulations that reflect their priorities.” A discussion paper, which poses a number of questions about government service delivery was distributed to representatives of various Acadian and francophone groups on Tuesday, May 9. The discussion paper is also available on the Acadian Affairs website at www.gov.ns.ca/acadian/e/act.asp for broader public comment. The Acadian and francophone community will be invited to provide more feedback before the regulations are finalized. Nova Scotia will make the first regulations under the French-language Services Act by December 2006. It is expected the regulations will evolve over time as government’s French-language services are expanded.
OTTAWA – Disgraced Sen. Don Meredith is resigning from the Senate rather than wait to see if his colleagues expel him for having a sexual relationship with a teenage girl.Meredith says in a statement that he recognizes the reputation of the Senate is more important than his “moral failings.”More Coming
Fans can now take a selfie with football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo wherever and whenever they please, and help kids at the same time.Today, the master of selfies has launched his CR7Selfie: Fans with a Cause app, in which fans can take a selfie with Ronaldo in one of several different outfits and poses – in a tux, holding the European Golden Boot, singing karaoke, to name a few – then share it with their friends, family, followers and other CR7 fans on various social media platforms. Available globally on Apple App and Google Play stores, the app, developed by 7Windows Consulting, will cost €1,99 to download, with a portion of worldwide proceeds of every download going to Save the Children.“I am thrilled to launch this app to engage with my fans in a new way,” said Cristiano Ronaldo. “From the very beginning, I knew that I wanted this app to support a charitable cause I believe in. I have been involved with Save the Children for several years now and knew they were the best partner for this app. As a father and Global Artist Ambassador for Save the Children, I am committed to working towards giving all children a better and brighter future. I invite everyone to be a fan with a cause, so be sure to download the app, take a selfie with me anytime, anywhere and everywhere – and at the same time help kids in need!”In the app, fans can select from among 68 photos of Ronaldo in different outfits and poses, and scroll through 39 filters to apply to their selfies. New photos of Ronaldo will be made available at select times throughout the year through in-app purchases for 99 Euro cents each. Save the Children also will benefit from a portion of worldwide proceeds of every in-app purchase.Funds raised for Save the Children through CR7Selfie: Fans with a Cause app sales will go to giving children around the world a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. In 2015 alone, Save the Children helped 185 million children through its global work in 120 countries.Cristiano Ronaldo was named a Global Artist Ambassador for Save the Children in January 2013. With over 230 million followers on social media, the world-renowned football player regularly uses his platforms to shine a much-needed spotlight on the most pressing needs of children around the globe and to engage his fans to do more to help children in need, both in their own communities and all over the world.“We are so grateful to Cristiano Ronaldo for this new partnership and the work he has done in bringing attention to children’s issues around the world,” said Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children. “One in 11 children is out of school worldwide. Refugee children fare even worse; they are five times more likely to be out of school than non-refugee children. Education is critical to helping children build opportunities for success, as well as realize their dreams. Together, this partnership and the power of social media can have an incredible impact on children globally, opening the door to learning and other opportunities to put them on the path to reach their full potential.”To help children, supporters can download the app and smile, shoot and share with Ronaldo by visiting CR7Selfie.com, and posting and tagging their photos to @Cristiano and @SaveTheChildren on Facebook, Google Plus, Instagram, Twitter and Weibo.
Premier Rachel Notley is winding up her trip to Washington D.C. and says it’s been critical to securing our economy and international reputation.Notley has been meeting with several American government officials including Alaskan senator and Chair of the Senate Committee on Energy Lisa Murkowski.She says it was satisfying to discover how interested Washington leaders were in learning more about how our climate leadership plan was accomplished.“People who are trying to move the ball down the field on environmental legislation, on climate change pieces, were very excited by the work that we’ve done and actually saw it for the progress it represents,” says Notley.The premier says the more we can show people our extraction and production are environmentally sustainable, the more attractive our province will become. Notley says she was surprised with how open Washington leaders were in talking about energy after hearing Alberta’s Climate Change Plan.“There’s not going to be an immediate stop of people using non-renewable energy, and that in fact, Canada continues to be a reliable, responsible supplier,” she says.She says for far too long our reputation has been put at risk and that is now changing. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Premier Rachel Notley comments after the federal government released its first budget. March 22/2016 Reporter Ian Campbell by Kaitlin Lee Posted Apr 29, 2016 12:48 pm MDT Notley trying to boost the rep of Alberta oil industry in Washington
Minister of Finance Bill Morneau speaks during a press conference at the media lock-up, before tabling the budget in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa on Wednesday, March 22, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang Liberal budget details $11.2B in affordable housing, plus push for private cash by Jordan Press, The Canadian Press Posted Mar 22, 2017 2:31 pm MDT Last Updated Mar 22, 2017 at 6:20 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email OTTAWA – Cities and affordable housing providers will find themselves with $11.2 billion more to spend on new and existing units over the coming decade, part of a multi-pronged push detailed in Wednesday’s federal budget to help people find homes.The money, which comes from the government’s social infrastructure fund, includes $5 billion to encourage housing providers to pool resources with private partners and to allow the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. to provide more direct loans to cities.Overall, the fund gives the Liberals a way to bypass provinces and deliver more cash straight to local governments.The Liberal government wants to ensure cities can access funds as quickly as possible to make necessary investments in the country’s stock of aging affordable housing, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said Wednesday before tabling the budget.Jeff Morrison, executive director of the Canadian Housing and Renewal Association, summed up the Liberal spending plan: “The government is back in the social housing business.”Still, the funding falls short of the $12.6 billion the mayors of Canada’s biggest cities requested last year. Further, the majority of the $11.2 billion isn’t slated to be spent until after 2022.The money, coupled with $2.1 billion for homelessness initiatives over the next 11 years and a $4-billion pot to help housing providers with expiring funding agreements, sets the financial backbone for a coming national housing strategy.The document will outline how the government plans to help people find affordable housing that meets their needs, ensure a robust emergency shelter and transitional housing system for those who need it, and help providers become financially self-sufficient.“The national housing strategy is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for change,” said Mark Rodgers, president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Canada. “To be effective, we must invest in all parts of the housing continuum, including affordable home ownership.”Wednesday’s budget, which outlines how the government plans to spend the $81 billion it is making available between now and 2028 to address future infrastructure needs and, the government hopes, boost the economy to create new jobs and government revenues.What’s needed now is finalized funding agreements with provinces that will set funding and spending rules.The budget also gives $39.9 million over five years for Statistics Canada to create a national database of every property in Canada, including up-to-date information on sales, the degree of foreign ownership and homeowner demographics and finances to answer questions about the skyrocketing cost of housing.“The federal government stepped up with some bricks-and-mortar money and some programming money,” said Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson, head of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities big city mayors’ caucus.“Our only concern is it’s a bit back loaded right now, but we’ll work with the federal government to see if the investments can be accelerated to realize the goods sooner.”The Liberals clearly see a need to attract private investors to help pay for infrastructure projects, including affordable housing, given the federal government’s tight fiscal position.At the centre of that push is a proposed new infrastructure bank that would use public dollars to leverage private investment in three key areas: trade corridors, green infrastructure and public transit.The government is setting aside $15 billion in cash for the bank, split evenly between each of the aforementioned funding streams, with spending set to start as early as the next fiscal year on projects based on budget projections.Morneau said that the government wants to have the bank up and running this year, including having some projects that will be identified for investors.But the budget document again projects that the majority of the bank’s spending won’t happen until after 2022. And in the case of trade corridor infrastructure, spending isn’t expected to start until 2020, even though some experts argue this stream would give the country the biggest economic bump.The Liberals are also tweaking how much of the bill it will cover for municipal projects under the second phase of its infrastructure plan in order to nudge provinces to pony up more money for work and to prod cities to consider using the bank for projects that could generate revenue, like transit systems.The government will cover up to 40 per cent of municipal projects under the upcoming phase of its infrastructure plan, 50 per cent for provincial projects and 75 per cent for indigenous projects.— Follow @jpress on Twitter.
Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp “The people of this country must know that all who share a function in addressing national security is well alert, engaged and on the job. I have not left matters unattended as it relates to the role of Government neither have I been disconnected nor reckless in the carriage of my duties or trust. I am asking each of us to be careful of what we share by whatsapp and on social media as this is contributing to how we market our tourist destination. We must not want our postings to be the one advertisement that a tourist or potential tourist reads. These latest experiences reveal not a crisis in leadership but one of a crisis in morality. We have a few misguided youth who for whatever reason has chosen this destructive path that threatens life and also put their lives at risk. What sets us apart from all of our neighbors is the fact that a few reckless acts as well as a few reckless statements in such a small country can have a devastating impact. What I wish to say to my people is that we must take stock of our actions and resist the temptation to turn this into a fight with each other and to turn this on a fight for our misguided youth, our troubled homes and communities and if we must turn it on persons, turn it on those who seek to exploit this troubled time for political and personal gain at the loss of our country. We are all in this together and if we are going to win which I am sure that we will, we must not delay the win by wasting time on issues that pale in comparison to the challenges we face as a people. Oh how I would wish to be the super woman with a magical wand that can turn everything perfect instantly but what I am is a leader that will not neglect her people nor stand down in the face of a fight for us as a people; what I am is a leader that is hurt for my people who are in too many ways being exploited by selfish persons. This is not at all a crisis in leadership: it is a crisis in morality and we must address the real issues while law enforcement does its part. My Government remains committed to addressing causal factors as well as funding policing initiatives.”#MagneticMediaNews#PressRelease The purchasing of a building to house the highly anticipated CCTV Program and other new crime fighting initiatives;The approval of funding for additional Police Officers including managers of the CCTV Project in the recently passed Budget;The approval of $1.2m in the purchase of new cars in the recently passed budget;The agreement in the National Security Council to devise a national security strategy;The inclusion of modern crime fighting initiatives and other legislative support for the Police in our legislative calendar;The beginning works jointly between the Police and Immigration to seek out and to repatriate undocumented persons;The presentation, as Premier, to Cabinet of a Paper on the rehabilitation of offenders in an effort to reduce the rate of repeat offenders;The initial dialogue with the TCHTA and the wider business community to employ those at risk under the Government’s Change for Change Program to be led by the Ministry of Home Affairs; andHolding meetings with Pastors and other civic leaders to assist in identifying and creating Programs that will address our youth.“I want to encourage us as a people not to be led blindly by those who choose the way of personal attacks and gutter politics to score political points and to exploit those who are genuinely fearful and concerned for their country. This has and always will be bigger than politics. This time calls for calm, responsible and strong leadership and while finger pointing is all that some know or have come to accept as leadership, much is happening in the area of national security,” says Premier Robinson. Related Items: Turks and Caicos, Thursday 3rd August 2017 – Providenciales – “A Leader of a country is never on vacation and no one must feel that there is a crisis in leadership on the matter of crime in the Turks and Caicos Islands. The Acting Premier is fully engaged and I am fully aware of what is transpiring. We continue to engage law enforcement on their needs and will continue to support them. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp “We will continue our efforts as a Government on the initiatives we have committed to for the short term as well as the long term future. There are those who would seek to reduce the efforts by this Government over the past few months to Press Releases and it would be irresponsible if we do not remind persons and counter the falsehoods. On coming to Office we promised the people that we would make representation to the United Kingdom (UK) for assistance and this we did on two separate occasions with the UK Ministers responsible for Overseas Territories in the past 7 months. This request was made initially to Baroness Anelay during a bi-lateral meeting in February and again with Lord Ahmad last month. We were grateful when in February when the UK agreed to have a security needs assessment carried out. The TCI was one of the earliest countries to receive a Team who assessed our needs. We are now in possession of that Report with recommendations. We will continue our efforts in this regard and are pleased with the reception by both Ministers. Nonetheless, we will continue to fund policing initiatives and would wish to remind our people again of our other efforts thus far in 7 months:
UK health insurance costs are expected to rise by 6.5% in 2016, according to research by Willis Towers Watson.Its 2016 Global medical trends report, which surveyed 174 health insurance providers operating across 55 countries, also found that the average price of health insurance globally is estimated to rise by 9.1% this year.The research also found:Health insurance costs are forecast to increase by 5% in Belgium, 3.5% in France, and 1.2% in Spain in 2016. Increases of 4.7%, 2.1% and 0.8% are expected in Greece, Portugal, and Italy, respectively.Health insurance prices are estimated to rise by 15% in Russia this year, compared to 10% in Norway and 8% in Sweden.Over the last five years, there has been an annual increase in UK health insurance prices of between 5.1% and 6.4%, which compares to annual increases of between 8% and 9.6% in 2007-2011.Jeremy Hill (pictured), director in Willis Towers Watson’s Global Services and Solutions business, said: “Health insurance remains a key employee benefit in the UK, but the effect of aging workforces, costly and complex treatments, and technological advancements is that health insurance inflation in the UK is higher than in most of Europe.“Employers continue to keep health costs under review, with many looking at cost-sharing mechanisms to contain cost, as well as looking at health and wellbeing approaches to improve the underlying health of employees.”
NORTH BAY VILLAGE, FLA. (WSVN) – Police are investigating a North Bay Village commissioner’s allegations of receiving a threatening package at his home.Commissioner and licensed physician Dr. Douglas Hornsby said he is being extorted because he has a prior drug conviction for cocaine from 1989.At the city’s previous commission meeting, he said someone wanted to expose him. “I got another package addressed to my wife and me, a bigger package of all the doctors I know and all the hospitals where I’m licensed,” Hornsby said. “The implied threat is to send it to everybody I know, everybody who has saw me or heard of me because they don’t like the way I vote.”Hornsby completed a rehab program decades ago, and has been clean ever since. He later went on to become a licensed radiologist.The threats have called for Hornsby to resign or else.North Bay Village Police have begun an investigation into the allegations.The police chief released a statement saying, “This criminal investigation will proceed swiftly and aggressively with the unwavering intent to hold the responsible individual(s) accountable for the criminal actions.” Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
MIAMI GARDENS, FLA. (WSVN) – Several dozen gunshots rang out in the parking lot of the Betty T. Ferguson Recreational Complex in Miami Gardens after an argument between two groups escalated in front of bystanders, but thankfully no one was hit, police said.Miami Gardens Police units responded to the property along Northwest 199th Street after their shot spotter picked up the rounds, just after 8:30 p.m., Thursday.Officials said a dance group that was not sponsored by the city was practicing near the park when another group arrived and got into some type of altercation with them.At some point, police said, members of the group that arrived later opened fire.No one was injured.Upon further investigation, police said, the incident seemed to have stemmed from a prior argument between members of both groups that took place outside of Miami Gardens.Initial reports stated a bullet hit a car, and shattered glass from that vehicle struck one person, but officials said that victim is OK. 7News cameras captured police officers picking up shell casings and searching for clues in the parking lot.Police said more than three dozen rounds were fired in total.Brandy Wells, who works with many of the teens who were at the complex as part of a youth mentor program, said the incident underscores the importance of recreational activities for local teens.“What these kids were doing, they were dancing. That’s all they were doing, at a city park,” she said. “When there is no prevention and nothing for these children to do, this is why they have idle time to commit crimes. I mean, if we have more programs, more services for these kids, these things wouldn’t happen.”Police said Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver G. Gilbert III was on hand at the venue, but it’s unclear whether there was an event taking place at the time.Officials said police officers will be present at the complex during normal hours of operation as a precaution.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Feature | July 09, 2008 | Amy Lillard Can IMRT Outpace the Competition? New IMRT systems speed up treatment, but other technologies are fast on its heels. News | Radiation Therapy | August 02, 2019 Varian Showcases Cancer Care Systems and Software at AAPM 2019 Varian showcased systems and software from its cancer care portfolio, including the Identify Guidance System, at the… read more News | Patient Positioning Radiation Therapy | August 15, 2019 Mevion and C-RAD Release Integration for Improved Proton Therapy Treatment Quality Mevion Medical Systems and C-RAD announced the integration between the C-RAD Catalyst PT and the Mevion S250i proton… read more News | Radiation Oncology | July 31, 2019 Laura Dawson, M.D., FASTRO, Chosen as ASTRO President-elect The members of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) elected four new officers to ASTRO’s Board of… read more Following radiation, the bone marrow shows nearly complete loss of blood cells in mice (left). Mice treated with the PTP-sigma inhibitor displayed rapid recovery of blood cells (purple, right). Credit: UCLA Broad Stem Cell Research Center/Nature Communications News | Brachytherapy Systems | August 14, 2019 Efficacy of Isoray’s Cesium Blu Showcased in Recent Studies August 14, 2019 — Isoray announced a trio of studies recently reported at scientific meetings and published in medica read more The MD Anderson Proton Therapy Center expansion is expected to be completed in 2023. Rendering courtesy of Stantec. Related Content News | Radiation Therapy | August 15, 2019 First Patient Enrolled in World’s Largest Brain Cancer Clinical Trial Henry Ford Cancer Institute is first-in-the-world to enroll a glioblastoma patient in the GBM AGILE Trial (Adaptive… read more Radiation oncologists are faced with the ongoing challenge of very accurately delivering dose to lesions, often in difficult to reach areas such as the head and neck, lungs and prostate. But clinicians may be overcoming that obstacle as new advances in IMRT technologies offer unprecedented improvements in the speed and accuracy of radiation therapy.Many clinicians are anxious about new intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) techniques emerging out of companies like TomoTherapy, Elekta and Varian Medical Systems. New advances promise to build on the success of IMRT, offer unprecedented benefits for patients and physicians and, according to some experts, could one day threaten to replace IMRT. Overcoming RT’s ObstaclesFor years, radiation oncologists have been frustrated with their ability to effectively use radiotherapy on patients with cancers placed in difficult to reach areas. “For a long time we in radiation oncology have been limited in the dose delivered to certain tumor types,” said Mohan Suntharalingam, M.D., professor and vice chair, department of radiation oncology, University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center. “We don’t want to hurt the healthy tissue surrounding the tumor, but that limits our ability to give effective radiation doses to these tumors.” Another major concern is the extensive treatment times for radiotherapy, durations that cause extreme discomfort for already weakened patients. A patient with head and neck cancer, for example, will experience a number of side effects while undergoing radiation therapy and in between sessions, forcing these patients to be in a confined spot for upwards of 40 minutes, during which time they’re feeling nausea, dry mouth, difficulty swallowing and more, creating notable discomfort for the patient. That length of time needed for effective radiotherapy also puts the clinicians at a disadvantage. Prolonged treatment times mean less efficiency in the practice, less patients to be seen and less monetary resources available to put back into the expensive treatment methodologies. With the advent of IMRT technology in the last decade, these challenges were faced head on. As clinicians well know, IMRT was a major advance in that it permitted the delivery of high doses of radiation to the tumor, while simultaneously minimizing the dose to other sensitive organs and critical structures. The treatment is based on very small beams aimed from multiple angles, and the intensity of the beams changes constantly throughout the procedure. Radiologists use multiple imaging procedures for three-dimensional anatomical information, and then create a plan covering the angles and intensity of the beams. An important piece involved in the technology is the multileaf collimator (MLC), consisting of up to 120 individually adjusted metal leaves that move across the tissue while its being irradiated. The leaves block out certain areas, filter others to vary the beam intensity and contribute to precise radiation placement and dosage. IMRT offers radiation oncologists the ability to focus radiation therapy, avoid healthy tissue and create more efficacy in cancers that are often harder to treat. Now after a decade of increasing IMRT usage, the technology and techniques are evolving, offering enhanced precision and efficacy to patients. But even more striking is the speed at which this therapy is offered. The new systems, all in early stages of development and rollout, offer increased versatility, conformance and dosing, but also reduce treatment times dramatically to as little as two minutes. With less time on the table, patient quality of life is significantly improved, and clinician ability to treat patients is maximized. In the following sections, we examine three of these new systems in terms of patient and physician benefits. Improving upon IMRT The TomoTherapy HI-ART System is already placed in over 150 centers around the world, and expansion is occurring rapidly. TomoTherapy delivers radiation treatment for cancer through “slice therapy,” in which radiation beams are emitted in a spiral. The idea is that the more angles radiation comes from, the higher the focus on the tumor and less on surrounding structures. “Image guidance from the HI-ART allows us to reduce the planning target volumes for some patients, which results in less dose to surrounding tissues and less toxicity,” said Paul Read, associate professor and vice chair, department of radiation oncology at University of Virginia Medical Center. “Also, the system is versatile with respect to treating multiple target volumes to different doses simultaneously. We routinely use this feature in our treatments. The system is also well suited for the next major advancement in cancer radiation therapy, adaptive radiation therapy, improving the accuracy of treatment delivery.”Delivery for TomoTherapy involves creating a CT image immediately prior to treatment, with which radiologists can adjust the tumor position and radiation angles and intensity for that specific patient on that specific day. The image also allows for on-the-spot adaptation during treatment. Radiation is produced by a linear accelerator that travels in multiple circles around the patient in tandem with a MLC. Simultaneously, the couch is moving as well, guiding the patient through the center of the ring. The treatment focuses on precision and power, but is also relatively short. From the patient’s entrance until his or her exit, the entire procedure, including CT scanning, set-up, positioning and image registration takes 10-20 minutes.Varian Medical Systems has raised the bar on IMRT dose delivery speed with the introduction of the RapidArc. Varian’s new RapidArc unit produces significantly less radiation — as little as 600 MU per fraction compared to up to 3,000 MU in conventional IMRT — and the single gantry rotation results in less leakage, scatter and peripheral dose. Treatment is delivered through a single arc of the machine that rotates around the patient, resulting in a treatment time of two minutes or less. The University of Maryland has a long history of exploring ARC therapy, and championed the Varian RapidArc for its speed and efficacy. “I treat neck cancer in particular, and those patients, because of the anatomy of the region and the close proximity of critical structures, have been limited in the radiation treatment,” said Dr. Suntharalingam. “Now we can push past those historical limitations. Plus the speed of delivery is a significant issue. It’s a huge savings from patient comfort standpoint.” Another major benefit for this technology might be the relative ease in use. “For those of us at academic programs, the level of support required for advanced IMRT systems can be managed quite easily. But the majority of patients get cancer care in the community. This kind of technology offers advances in a more straightforward delivery process, one where the learning curve might not be as much and resources required less.”Meet the CompetitionThe Elekta Volumetric Intensity Modulated Arc Therapy (VMAT) operates in a similar fashion to TomoTherapy, yet, according to Elekta, VMAT significantly reduces operating times. The system gives the radiologists control to vary beam angle and strength and works through simultaneous manipulation of the gantry position, gantry speed, MLC leaves, dose rate and collimator angle. This control is coupled with an ultra-low imaging dose, creating precise dose delivery and reduced toxicity to surrounding tissue. Treatment delivery is performed in three minutes or less, using single, multiple or partial arcs of the beams. VMAT is not yet FDA approved, nor is the enhanced Infinity digital accelerator; however, clinical sites developing and optimizing the system have found much to be excited about. “VMAT allows you to create highly conformal treatment plans,” said Vivek K. Mehta, M.D., director, Center for Advanced Targeted Radiotherapies, Swedish Cancer Institute. “This planning solution does as well or better than existing planning tools, ensuring the radiation dose gets concentrated in and around the target, minimizing the dose to normal tissues. But the delivery time is much quicker. That improved efficiency is good for the clinic and the less time a patient spends strapped down on table, the better it is for the patient.”Dr. Mehta and his team are creating a plan to rollout the VMAT into clinics around the country, including a course for physicians on how to develop, treat and implement VMAT in their clinics. “We want to bring the technology into the community practice so others can learn and benefit,” he said. “I think this will in the not too distant future replace most if not all of IMRT. Efficiency in the clinic and the reduced treatment time will be key drivers for uptake.” Whether or not volumetric arc therapy will outpace the advances in other IMRT systems remains to be seen. What is certain, however, is that in the next few years, radiation oncologists will have an increasing array of technological tools available to meet their treatment challenges and improve patient outcome. FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 News | Radiation Therapy | August 16, 2019 Drug Accelerates Blood System’s Recovery After Radiation, Chemotherapy A drug developed by UCLA physician-scientists and chemists speeds up the regeneration of mouse and human blood stem… read more Feature | August 05, 2019 | Dave Fornell, Editor Most Popular Radiology and Radiotherapy Topics in July 2019 August 5, 2019 — Here is the list of the most popular content on the Imaging Technology New (ITN) magazine website fr read more News | Patient Positioning Radiation Therapy | August 07, 2019 Qfix kVue One Proton Couch Top Validated by Mevion Medical Systems Qfix and Mevion Medical Systems announced that a special version of the kVue One Proton couch top is now both validated… read more 12PreviousNext The top piece of content in July was a video interview explaining how Princess Margaret Cancer Center is using machine learning to create automated treatment plans. This was a hot topic at the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) 2019 meeting in July. News | Proton Therapy | August 08, 2019 MD Anderson to Expand Proton Therapy Center The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center unveiled plans to expand its Proton Therapy Center during a… read more Catalyst PT image courtesy of C-RAD News | Proton Therapy | August 06, 2019 IBA Signs Contract to Install Proton Therapy Center in Kansas IBA (Ion Beam Applications S.A.) recently signed a contract and received the first payment for a Proteus One solution… read more
News | October 03, 2011 New Standards for Echocardiography in the NICU Could Improve Treatment for Newborns FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 360 Photos | Ultrasound Imaging | July 08, 2019 360 Degree View of an Echocardiography Exam on the SC2000 System This is a 360 degree view of a live cardiac echo demonstration for the Siemens Healthineers Acuson SC2000… read more News | Cardiovascular Ultrasound | August 05, 2019 Digital Health Devices Used at Point of Care May Improve Diagnostic Certainty A West Virginia-based rural medical outreach event showcased the use of point-of-care technology in an ambulatory… read more News | Cardiovascular Ultrasound | August 07, 2019 Contrast Use in First Transthoracic Echocardiogram for Heart Failure Reduces Repeat Testing Heart failure is the fourth most common cause for all admission to U.S. hospitals, and it is the most common reason for… read more News | Cardiovascular Ultrasound | July 02, 2019 Konica Minolta Healthcare Partners With DiA Imaging Analysis for AI-based Cardiac Ultrasound Analysis DiA Imaging Analysis has partnered with Konica Minolta Healthcare Americas Inc. to expand analysis capabilities of… read more 360 Photos | Ultrasound Imaging | July 11, 2019 360 Degree View of a Smartphone Performing a Cardiac Ultrasound Exam This 360 degree photo shows a basic, point-of-care cardiac echocardiogram being performed using a smartphone turned i read more News | Cardiovascular Ultrasound | April 30, 2019 New Guideline Published for Evaluation of Valvular Regurgitation After Catheter-based Valve Interventions A new document compiled by four cardiac imaging professional societies provides a resource to guide clinicians in best… read more News | Ultrasound Imaging | June 27, 2019 FDA Issues Final Guidance on Marketing Clearance of Diagnostic Ultrasound Systems and Transducers The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued the final guidance: Marketing Clearance of Diagnostic Ultrasound… read more 360 Photos | Ultrasound Imaging | July 09, 2019 360 Degree View of a Mitral Valve Ultrasound Exam on a Vivid E95 System A view of a mitral valve on a GE Healthcare Vivid E95 … read more 3D Auto RV application image courtesy of Philips Healthcare October 3, 2011 —The American Society of Echocardiography (ASE) has published guidelines for new applications for echocardiography in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). An expert consensus statement, “Targeted Neonatal Echocardiography in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit: Practice Guidelines and Recommendations for Training,” has been published in the October 2011 issue of JASE, the ASE’s monthly journal, and is also available online at: www.asecho/guidelines. The document defines the scope and appropriateness of echocardiography in the NICU and defines standards for both the echocardiographic examination and the individuals who perform and interpret these studies.Previously, nearly all echocardiography studies in the NICU were performed by pediatric cardiologists to diagnose or monitor congenital heart disease and to screen for patent ductus arteriosus (a condition in which a blood vessel fails to close normally after birth). Now, neonatologists have become interested in echocardiographic assessment. A targeted neonatal echo (TNE) is being used by neonatologists to help them understand the factors contributing to hemodynamic instability in preterm infants. TNE has caused a lot of enthusiasm in the NICU world, resulting in more and more neonatologists performing echocardiograms. As such, the ASE, in concert with other professional societies, felt the need to establish practice guidelines. “The aim of this document is to clearly define the current indications and standards for echocardiography in the NICU. We also needed to define the training requirements for neonatologists to make it a safe technique,” explained Luc Mertens, M.D., Ph.D., FASE, FESC, lead author of the document.Currently, the neonatologist’s hemodynamic monitoring is mainly based on blood pressure measurements and treatment of low blood pressure. There is, however, a lack of insight on the different mechanisms causing low blood pressure, and there are no defined thresholds for therapeutic interventions. As the field continues to gather scientific evidence to support this usage, preliminary results show promise, but there are concerns. “With the rapidly growing use of echocardiography in this setting, this document is fundamental to the appropriate practice of this modality in premature infants and should lead to enhanced quality of care and improved detection and treatment of congenital heart disease in these neonates,” said Benjamin W. Eidem, M.D., FASE, of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology at the Mayo Clinic and chairman of ASE’s Council on Pediatric and Congenital Heart Disease.The ASE collaborated with the European Association of Echocardiography (EAE) and the Association for European Pediatric Cardiologists (AEPC) to produce the consensus statement. “The support of these leading pediatric organizations is indicative of the need for and importance of these standards,” Mertens noted.For more information: www.aesecho.org News | Cardiovascular Ultrasound | June 20, 2019 Bay Labs Announces New Echocardiography Guidance Software Data at ASE 2019 Scientific Sessions Bay Labs announced that new data on the company’s first-of-its-kind deep learning investigational guidance software… read more Technology | Cardiovascular Ultrasound | July 02, 2019 Philips Extends Advanced Automation on Epiq CVx Cardiovascular Ultrasound Platform Philips recently announced new advanced automation capabilities on its Epiq CVx and Epiq CVxi cardiac ultrasound… read more Related Content
News | Medical 3-D Printing | August 08, 2019 RSNA and ACR to Collaborate on Landmark Medical 3D Printing Registry The Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and the American College of Radiology (ACR) will launch a new medical… read more Image courtesy of VivoSight News | Artificial Intelligence | August 13, 2019 Artificial Intelligence Could Yield More Accurate Breast Cancer Diagnoses University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) researchers have developed an artificial intelligence (AI) system that… read more Image courtesy of VivoSight Technology | Neuro Imaging | August 07, 2019 Synaptive Medical Launches Modus Plan With Automated Tractography Segmentation Synaptive Medical announced the U.S. launch and availability of Modus Plan featuring BrightMatter AutoSeg. This release… read more read more 12PreviousNext News | Lung Cancer | July 17, 2019 New Lung Ambition Alliance Aims to Double Five-year Lung Cancer Survival by 2025 The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC), Guardant Health, the Global Lung Cancer Coalition (… read more News | Breast Imaging | August 02, 2019 Volpara to Distribute Screenpoint Medical’s Transpara AI Solution Volpara Solutions and ScreenPoint Medical BV signed an agreement under which Volpara will sell ScreenPoint’s Transpara… read more News | Mammography | August 14, 2019 Imago Systems Announces Collaboration With Mayo Clinic for Breast Imaging Image visualization company Imago Systems announced it has signed a know-how license with Mayo Clinic. The multi-year… read more News | Oncology Diagnostics | October 30, 2017 Laser Scanner Detects Skin Cancer in Less Than 30 Seconds A team of European scientists has developed the world’s first cancer scanner that detects blood vessels grown by a malignant melanoma with an infrared laser beam in 30 seconds Image courtesy of VivoSightOctober 30, 2017 — Current skin cancer diagnosis can last a number of weeks and be very upsetting. However, a new imaging system developed by a group of European scientists could dramatically speed up the process and reduce the need for debilitating sentinel-lymph node biopsies by placing real-time cancer diagnosis in the hands of a dermatologist.Multiple stages of skin cancer diagnosis can involve visiting a GP, being sent to a dermatologist for a skin biopsy, waiting for laboratory analysis, having a sentinel lymph node biopsy under general anaesthetic, and then having more tests if the cancer has spread.Now, using a handheld laser, a specialist can actually see under the skin at depths of 1 mm by creating a 3-D color image of the microscopic blood vessels in a process that takes around 30 seconds.Employing a new and advanced version of optical coherence tomography (OCT), a photonics technique more commonly used in retina scans, the scanner captures 3-D images of the micro-structures under the skin with a harmless infrared laser beam.Since melanomas need oxygen to grow and survive, they grow their own blood vessels. As the cancer develops and becomes more malignant, they become increasingly distorted and malformed, differing in appearance from healthy vessels.Being able to detect and see these vessels in a suspicious lesion in real time has never been possible, until now, opening the possibility for dermatologists to make treatment decisions in an unrivalled timeframe.Over 55,500 people in the world died from malignant melanoma of the skin in 2012 alone. While 2,459 deaths from melanoma skin cancer were recorded in the United Kingdom in 2014, an estimated 9,730 people will die of melanoma in the United States in 2017.Melanomas produce their own blood vessels to feed and grow the tumor, so by revealing the microstructures in 3-D pictures the scanner show doctors how the cancer has developed.A specialist can potentially determine on the spot, whether simply cutting it out is sufficient for a cure or whether further treatment with cancer drugs will be needed.With their new device called VivoSight on the market, the European team ADVANCE (Automatic Detection of VAscular Networks for Cancer Evaluation) is aiming to reduce the time for treatment decision from a number of weeks to a matter of seconds, while removing the invasive nature of the appointment.U.K. project leader Jon Holmes of Michelson Diagnostics Ltd, a key partner in the ADVANCE consortium, explained, “Every melanoma above a certain thickness could have spread to other parts of the body. At present, all patients with such melanomas have to wait for a sentinel lymph node biopsy performed in a hospital under general anesthesia to find out if it is spreading. This can take weeks to perform, is very expensive and can be debilitating for the patient.”The ADVANCE team has employed a variant of OCT in its scanner called speckle-variance OCT or dynamic OCT (D-OCT), an advancement of OCT that is ideal for capturing movement.Studying the ‘speckle’ or flicker of light patterns created by moving blood cells, the imaging device takes around four frames per second and compiles the images so that a clinician may tell where something has moved on the image from frame to frame.“Using D-OCT we can see movement of blood against the solid tissue structures, something we have never been able to do before in a clinical setting. It’s like looking out at night and seeing cars’ headlights flowing along a motorway, only at depths of nanometers under the skin,” said Holmes.While a sentinel node biopsy can cost in excess of €10,000 (~$13,000 U.S.), and with many hospitals performing hundreds per year, there is a growing concern and a need to find an alternative when over 80 percent of these operations turn out to be clear of any malignant growth, according to Holmes.As well as its use in skin cancer diagnosis, the ability to see blood vessel networks with the ADVANCE technology has created a number of useful spin-off benefits.“The scanner can image the blood vessels in healing wounds. This may have application for treatment of leg and foot chronic ulcers, when doctors want to know whether a wound is healing or requires a change in treatment, potentially reducing the number of amputations,” said Holmes. He added,“ADVANCE technology may also help with burn victims, being able to give a doctor a quicker response time than the standard 15 days to determine whether a patient’s skin is healing and whether or not to give a skin graft.”For more information: www.photonics21.org FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 Related Content Image courtesy of VivoSight Image courtesy of Imago Systems Image courtesy of VivoSight Feature | Artificial Intelligence | July 19, 2019 | Michal Chorev AI Models Predict Breast Cancer With Radiologist-level Accuracy Breast cancer is the global leading cause of cancer-related deaths in women, and the most commonly diagnosed cancer… read more Qlarity Imaging’s software is used to assist radiologists in the assessment and characterization of breast lesions. Imaging features are synthesized by an artificial intelligence algorithm into a single value, the QI score, which is analyzed relative to a database of reference abnormalities with known ground truth. Image courtesy of Business Wire. IBM collected a dataset of 52,936 images from 13,234 women who underwent at least one mammogram between 2013 and 2017, and who had health records for at least one year prior to the mammogram. The algorithm was trained on 9,611 mammograms. Image courtesy of Radiology. News | Colonoscopy Systems | August 06, 2019 Rise in Early Onset Colorectal Cancer Not Aligned With Screening Trends A new study finds that trends in colonoscopy rates did not fully align with the increase in colorectal cancer (CRC) in… read more News | Ultrasound Women’s Health | July 11, 2019 FDA Clears Koios DS Breast 2.0 AI-based Software Koios Medical announced its second 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Technology | Artificial Intelligence | July 18, 2019 Paragon Biosciences Launches Qlarity Imaging to Advance FDA-cleared AI Breast Cancer Diagnosis System Paragon Biosciences LLC announced the launch of its seventh portfolio company, Qlarity Imaging LLC, which was founded… read more
Google released a beta version of SparkR jobs on Cloud Dataproc, a cloud service that lets you run Apache Spark and Apache Hadoop in a cost-effective manner, earlier this week. SparkR Jobs will build R support on GCP. It is a package that delivers a lightweight front-end to use Apache Spark from R. This new package supports distributed machine learning using MLlib. It can be used to process against large cloud storage datasets and for performing work that is computationally intensive. Moreover, this new package also allows the developers to use “dplyr-like operations” i.e. a powerful R-package, which transforms and summarizes tabular data with rows and columns on datasets stored in Cloud Storage. The R programming language is very efficient when it comes to building data analysis tools and statistical apps. With cloud computing all the rage, even newer opportunities have opened up for developers working with R. Using GCP’s Cloud Dataproc Jobs API, it gets easier to submit SparkR jobs to a cluster without any need to open firewalls for accessing web-based IDEs or SSH onto the master node. With the API, it is easy to automate the repeatable R statistics that users want to be running on their datasets. Additionally, GCP for R also helps avoid the infrastructure barriers that put a limit on understanding data. This includes selecting datasets that need to be sampled due to compute or data size limits. GCP also allows you to build large-scale models that help analyze the datasets of sizes that would previously require big investments in high-performance computing infrastructures. For more information, check out the official Google Cloud blog post. Read Next Google expands its machine learning hardware portfolio with Cloud TPU Pods (alpha) to effectively train and deploy TensorFlow machine learning models on GCP Google Cloud Storage Security gets an upgrade with Bucket Lock, Cloud KMS keys and more Google Cloud’s Titan and Android Pie come together to secure users’ data on mobile devices
The head of the Cyprus Central Bank (CBC) on Monday said she had had to stop looking into bad loans held by Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) because she “got scared” when police seized her computers and questioned her.In parliament, Chrystalla Georghadji recalled that in 2015 she began gathering data on PEPs who had bad loans with Cypriot banks.In March of that year, someone leaked to the press a list of MPs and their loans at Bank of Cyprus.It showed that out of the 37 MPs listed, 19 owed the bank a total of €51.2m and 13 of those had Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) totalling €35.3m.At the time, furious MPs spoke of an attempt by the Central Bank to blackmail lawmakers through leaks to the press with information about their loan arrears.In May, following a complaint filed by independent MP Zaharias Koulias that his personal data had been violated, police entered the Central Bank with warrants to search the premises.According to Georghadji, when she went to her office one day she found a yellow police tape plastered around it.“The police told me they were seizing my computer. It is a serious matter, there was a criminal investigation, and my mea culpa was that perhaps I got scared.”She was later deposed by the CID.Her computer was subsequently returned to her when none other than Mario Draghi, head of the European Central Bank, intervened on her behalf.“At the time there was a great deal of controversy, there was such hatred directed against me,” Georghadji said.“Prior to that, as auditor-general, I had the public’s esteem but then, after I began to check the NPLs of Politically Exposed Persons, society turned on me. I still resent that.”The Central Bank chief said she was now willing to resume her investigation.“If you agree,” she told legislators, “I shall go back to my office right now and send a circular to the banks instructing them to give us this data [on PEPs].”MPs were unmoved, some accusing Georghadji of smoke and mirrors.Diko’s Angelos Votsis said there was no need for Georghadji to issue a circular to banks. Instead, the Central Bank boss could simply hand over what data she had directly to the House speaker, and parliament would take it from there.The Greens’ George Perdikis said Georghadji was playing the victim card in order to deflect criticism of her weak leadership.“It’s a distraction move. Ms Georghadji is the great absentee. She was absent from the issue of the co-operative bank, absent in the matter of the sale of loans [to third parties].”Earlier, the Central Bank chief had dropped another bombshell out of the blue. She told the House finance committee that there are questions surrounding the legal status of the asset management company (known as Sedipes) recently set up to absorb the bad loans on the legacy co-op’s balance sheet.The co-op’s performing loans and deposits were transferred to Hellenic Bank.“I have to admit that the finance ministry is trying together with us to resolve this problem,” she said of the tenuous legal status of Sedipes.MP were riled that this was the first they were hearing of the issue, some suggesting the government had tried to cover it up.Elaborating on the NPLs in the Cypriot banking system, Georghadji spoke of a significant reduction in bad loans during 2018.In addition to the €6.8bn in bad loans removed from the system as a result of the co-op-Hellenic transaction, Hellenic sold €144m in bad loans to Β2Kapital. In addition, Bank of Cyprus was poised to complete the sale to a third party of €2.8bn in NPLs by the end of the year.But despite the progress, the stock of NPLs still remained high, accounting for as much as 30 per cent of all loans on banks’ portfolios.This, she said, was a far cry from the EU average of 3.6 per cent.And although NPLs may have been scrubbed off banks’ balance sheets, these loans have not disappeared.“Rather, they remain in the real economy, in terms of private debt which currently stands at 220 per cent of GDP,” Georghadji warned.The banker recalled previous assertions she had made, to the effect that it might take up to five years for NPLs to drop to acceptable levels.“In retrospect, and according to guidance issued by the ECB, it appears we’ll need 10 years at least to solve the NPL problem,” she remarked.On the state of the economy in general, Georghadji cautioned against complacency in the management of public finances amid improving fiscal conditions and in particular the increase in public revenues.Her warnings came as ruling Disy together with Diko in co-operation with the government, are working on a package of incentives for consistent borrowers, increases in low pensions and a reduction in consumption tax on fuel, totalling around €100 million.“Positive developments in public revenue should not lead to complacency and unreasonable increases in government spending. The public debt is still very high,” she said.She also referred to the checks being conducted by the Council of Europe’s Moneyval Commission on money laundering, noting that a poor evaluation could have “multiple impacts” on Cyprus.Moneyval’s findings are keenly monitored by credit rating agencies, foreign investors, as well as Cypriot lenders’ correspondent banks who clear transactions in US dollars. You May LikeSecurity SaversWindows Users Advised To Do This TodaySecurity SaversUndoPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 minute and see why everyone is addictedPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GameUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndo Concern over falling tourism numbersUndoPensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoThe Deniz boat incident showed clearly the intentions of the Turkish sideUndoby Taboolaby Taboola