Why US classrooms are starting to resemble arcades

first_imgWALLINGFORD, Conn. — It’s 1 o’clock on a Wednesday afternoon in Wallingford, Connecticut, and about 20 children are watching a screen at the front of the room as they take turns navigating challenges and collecting virtual currency to unlock powers, outfits and pets for their characters.The game they’re playing has some similarities to the online battle game “Fortnite.” But the kids aren’t fighting one another — they’re racking up points for participation and good behaviour in their classroom at Dag Hammarskjold Middle School, where their teacher is presenting a home economics lesson with help from Classcraft, a fantasy-themed educational program.“It’s actually a lot of fun,” said 13-year-old Caiden McManus. “The pets — that’s my favourite thing to do. To train the pets, you gain as many gold pieces as possible so you can get the new outfits and stuff.”Peek inside your average classroom these days, and you’re likely to see teachers using apps, websites and software that borrow elements from video games to connect with students living technology-infused lives. By all accounts, they’re fun to use, and studies have found that some can be effective. But there is also skepticism about how often students who use them are better educated, or just better entertained.Dag Hammarskjold consumer sciences teacher Gianna Gurga said she had been looking for a way to get more out of her students. Students have been more motivated and performed better in her classes since she began using Classcraft in spring 2017, she said, and she has signed up a handful of other teachers in the school.“My kids are so addicted to it in the best way possible,” Gurga said.In one session, the classroom filled with suspenseful music as Gurga began rapid-fire questioning. With each correct answer, chosen from multiple choices on the screen, students gained points that could be used for avatar upgrades, privileges like listening to music in class, and a competition against other classrooms. The available characters — warriors, mages and healers — each have different powers and must collaborate to succeed.Points are awarded for class participation as well as good behaviour, but the kids can also be penalized, as was the case for one of Gurga’s seventh-graders who told a classmate to “shut up.”A middle school in New York City, Quest to Learn, was the first public school to fully embrace game-based learning when it opened nearly a decade ago. The Manhattan school, developed by game theorists with the Institute of Play, has been closely followed since by researchers hoping for hard evidence of results from technology-inspired gamification.In the last school year, 43 per cent of Quest to Learn’s students were up to state standards on the state English test, compared to 41 per cent citywide, and 29 per cent of its students met state standards on the state math test, compared to 33 per cent citywide. But advocates say standardized testing alone does not tell the story. Outside studies have shown growth in soft skills such as collaboration, creative thinking and empathy, according to Ross Flatt, director of programs and partnerships for the Institute of Play, a non-profit studio that uses game design principles to develop new learning experiences.To help educators identify programs with promise, the Johns Hopkins University Center for Research and Reform in Education launched a website that rates math and learning programs based on how they meet evidence standards for effectiveness under federal education law. The centre’s director, Robert Slavin, said there are some programs that have shown positive impacts but on average improvements are small.“When people talk about technology transforming everything, it may in the future, but it’s not there yet,” Slavin said.Some question whether the graphics, videos and sounds in so many programs are doing harm by teaching students to pursue the rewards.“Part of life is figuring out how to learn to love things and how to persevere in things even when it’s not extrinsically motivated,” said Christopher Devers, an education researcher at Johns Hopkins who said his review of the evidence suggests that on balance, games-based approaches tend to influence students in negative ways.One of the better known programs, DreamBox, teaches math by offering a series of problems that can grow increasingly challenging as the student enters correct answers. The program, which began as an app for consumers, entered the school market in 2011 and last year had 2.6 million student users. The company charges a fee of $7,500 per school building per year.DreamBox CEO Jessie Woolley-Wilson said the program is intended as an aid for teachers who can’t be expected to personalize learning for two dozen students simultaneously.“Let’s figure out a way to support a way to deliver the best teaching, and allow the learning guardian to get back to art of teaching,” she said. “Technology can deliver that math personalization in a way that can give the learning guardian actionable insights.”In Groton, Connecticut, early users of DreamBox reported anecdotal evidence of improved outcomes and schools are now using it district-wide. In Heather Dalton’s fifth-grade classroom at the Charles Barnum Elementary School, students spent the first half of a recent class working individually on DreamBox with headphones on. Information about their level of mastery of fractions was sent to Dalton’s laptop, but the students were most excited about the short video-game rewards they received between levels and the coins they gathered for upgrades to their avatars.“There’s a lot of learning,” Dalton said, “but it feels like a game to the kids.”Michael Melia, The Associated Presslast_img read more

11 Men Accused of Drug Smuggling Between France and Morocco

Rabat – Eleven men between the ages of 28 and 51 were accused of involvement in a hashish smuggling scheme between France and Morocco, and will be presented before a court in Rennes for charges of drug trafficking, criminal conspiracy, and money laundering on March 28.The accusations date back to December 2013, when the judicial police of Nantes were alerted of a drug operation between France and Morocco. In the years since, the police have wiretapped several targets between the two countries.These records led to the arrest of three men onboard of a vehicle go-fast (a vehicle with the ability of transporting heavy cargos with a high speed), carrying 115 kg of hashish. Read Also: Morocco’s DGSN Seizes 583 kg of Hashish and 34 kg of ‘Maajoun’ in CasablancaSoon after, the entire network was dismantled from Morocco, where cannabis is grown, to France, where several members sell the drug. Two of the men  are from the Paris region and a third is based indNantes. The searches carried out by the security elements at the home of one member of the organization allowed for the seizure of EU 22,000.During the first day of the hearing, one of the defense lawyers questioned the regularity of the phone tapping, claiming that it had been conducted abroad and not on French territory.In November 2017, six defendants had already been sentenced 5 to 7 years in prison, for their implications in another case.Read Also: DGSN Seizes 475 kg of Cocaine and 7402 Tablets of Ecstasy in TangierMost of the accused were known among the police investigators, including a 45-year-old man, suspected to be the head of the international criminal organization. He was previously implicated in a cocaine trafficking case and is currently exercising his right to remain silent. read more

Critical window closing fast for 12 million hungry Southern Africans UN warns

Calling on donors “to open their hearts at this most critical time,” a top United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) official has warned that a vital window is closing fast for 12 million people in Southern Africa to receive urgent help, including 5 million in Malawi facing the toughest ‘hunger season’ in more than a decade. “It is deplorable that enough donations only come in when images of emaciated African children starving in large numbers start appearing on television screens around the world,” WFP Deputy Executive Director Sheila Sisulu said, noting that the agency needs $185 million to feed up to 9.2 million hungry people in Lesotho, Swaziland, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe.“Hunger doesn’t have to be inevitable in Africa but once food needs start to peak, it will be too late for many of the weakest, especially children, and the cost of saving lives will escalate significantly,” she added in the Malawian capital Lilongwe. She noted that for Malawi alone WFP still needs $76 million to feed up to 2.9 million people before the next harvest in April/May 2006. “Malawi is not a repeat of Niger… yet. There is still a chance to help the most vulnerable,” she said referring to the food crisis that killed thousands in Niger earlier this year. “If we all act now, there is no reason why the situation should deteriorate further. But the world should be under no illusion, the clock is ticking and the outlook is bleak. We need money pledged now to feed the hungriest in a few months’ time.”Over the past six months, WFP and other aid agencies have warned of an imminent food crisis in Malawi and the rest of Southern Africa. It can take up to six months for donor pledges to WFP to appear as food aid on the ground in southern Africa.The food shortage in Malawi is caused by a combination of problems including the poorest maize harvest since 1994, erratic weather, shortages of seeds and fertilizers at the critical planting time, high prices for available food and chronic poverty, with at least 60 per cent of Malawians living below the poverty line. HIV/AIDS has also had a serious impact on agriculture, limiting people’s ability to grow food as many families are forced to spend meagre resources on medicine or funerals for those affected, leaving nothing to buy seeds and fertilizer at the most critical planting time. Malawi has an average adult HIV prevalence rate of 14.4 per cent. Pockets in the country are considerably higher.Malawi, like the rest of Southern Africa, is beset by a rising number of orphans due to HIV/AIDS, placing a heavy burden on families struggling to cope with food shortages. Even after good harvests, many of the poorest families have difficulties feeding themselves. read more

Audi R8 transformed into glowing Tron Race Car

first_imgRiding the wave of making everything techno-glowy these days thanks to last month’s release of the Disney’s film Tron: Legacy, West Coast Customs and Monster Cables teamed-up to create a very sweet ride that Flynn or his son Sam would be proud to cruise around in.Called the “Tron Race Car” by it’s creators, this modified Audi R8 features a chrome exterior and plenty of illumination details like glowing hubs and glowing vents, as well as a tricked-out interior where the seats and the rear audio speaker panel have illuminated elements that can change color. Which, depending on whether you are a good guy or bad guy in Tron, could come in handy.Sadly, however, it seems this car could never cruise the streets legally because of the shiny chrome paint job. But that wouldn’t stop me from taking this Tron: Legacy ride all around town and then some. Sure, I’d probably be in jail for the absurd number of traffic tickets I would receive. But it would be totally worth it.Tron Race Car 1 (560 x 370)Tron Race Car 1 (560 x 370)Tron Race Car 2 (560 x 370)Tron Race Car 3 (560 x 314)Tron Race Car 4 (560 x 314)Tron Race Car 5 (400 x 605)See more at West Coast Customs and West Coast Customs, via Geekologielast_img read more

Video Watch Hulk Hogans first WWE appearance since 2015 at Crown Jewel

first_img Celebrity Closeup: Edgar Ramirez Matthew Mcconaughey Videos Articles WWE has posted a clip (above) from today’s Crown Jewel event in Saudi Arabia, which featured the return of Hulk Hogan to WWE programming.This was Hogan’s first appearance back on WWE television since July of 2015.Here is an excerpt of the segment from Mike Tedesco’s Crown Jewel recap:WWE Hall of Famer Hulk Hogan is introduced to the crowd. Hogan is the host of Crown Jewel. This is Hogan’s first appearance on WWE television since July 2015. A loud Hogan chant fires up while fireworks go off. Hogan says, “Well let me tell you something, brother!” Hogan says it feels great to be out with the WWE Universe and all his Hulkamaniacs. Hogan says the power of Hulkamania is stronger than ever at “the Crown Jewel, jack.” It’s unbelievable to be the host. The show starts right now. Hogan asks,” What’cha gonna do when the power of Hulkamania and Crown Jewel run wild on you, brother?” Hogan poses while more fireworks explode.Recommended videosPowered by AnyClipCelebrity Closeup: Edgar RamirezVideo Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmuteDuration 1:30/Current Time 0:03Loaded: 24.25%0:03Remaining Time -1:27 FullscreenUp NextThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Replay the list Pinterest Google+ Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Dave Bautista Announces His Retirement From WWE Facebook Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia announce a new type of convention WWE Clash of Champions Results – 9/15/19 (Rollins vs. Strowman, Kingston vs. Orton)center_img Twitter Hulk Hogan Will Host WWE’s ‘Crown Jewel’ Event In Saudi Arabia Now Playing Up Next Former WWE star ‘Grandmaster Sexay’ dies Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Adam Martin RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR WhatsApp Live Podcast: Reviewing and discussing WWE Clash of Champions from Charlotte Wrestleview Live #65: Reviewing and discussing WWE Clash of Champions from Charlotte last_img read more

State cites CamasWashougal Fire Department for safety violations

first_imgThe Washington State Department of Labor & Industries has found safety violations against the Camas-Washougal Fire Department in the department’s response to a fire on Feb. 14 in Camas, and department officials fear the ruling could set dangerous precedents for firefighters around the state.The department and East Clark Professional Fire Fighters union met with the Department of Labor & Industries Thursday to discuss a complaint the union made after the Valentine’s Day fire, in which two firefighters responded to the call and entered a structure fire to save a man’s life. State code says three officers need to be on scene for firefighters to enter a structure fire when there is “a known rescue situation.”Camas-Washougal Fire Department Chief Nick Swinhart said the city plans on appealing the decision.“They’re essentially saying Washington firefighters are prohibited from saving lives if there are less than three members on scene,” Swinhart said.“In essence, the state is saying our personnel is expected to stand on the front lawn and let the person die or wait until other backup got there, which was several minutes later.”According to press releases from both the union and the fire department, the Department of Labor & Industries is going to issue three safety violations against the Camas-Washougal Fire Department: having two firefighters enter the building without enough personnel on scene, failing to utilize certain personal protective equipment in the smoke-filled atmosphere and having old turnouts that are considered too old for use.Swinhart said the old turnouts were at a station in the department, but not in use.East Clark Professional Fire Fighters President Adam Brice said limited staffing in the department was the cause of the other violation, in which one of the responding officers in the Feb. 14 fire didn’t wear a self-contained breathing apparatus during the rescue. Brice said that one firefighter was supposed to remain outside the building and act as an apparatus operator. When the other officer heard a man inside the burning building, they immediately went to rescue him, and there wasn’t time to put the pack and mask on.last_img read more

Advisory votes get mixed reviews

first_imgAdvisory vote No. 1: Directs Clark County commissioners to oppose any light-rail project unless first approved by county-wide vote.Advisory vote No. 2: Directs commissioners to oppose any bus rapid transit project unless first approved by county-wide vote.Advisory vote No. 3: Directs commissioners to support toll-free east county bridge across Columbia River.Advisory vote No. 4: Directs commissioners to support toll-free Interstate 5 Bridge replacement.Advisory vote No. 5: Directs commissioners to support toll-free west county bridge across Columbia River.A set of advisory votes next month will allow Clark County residents to weigh in directly on light rail, bus rapid transit and three proposed bridges across the Columbia River.The nonbinding measures will give voters up-or-down decisions on three bridge alignments: a replacement Interstate 5 bridge, a new bridge to the west of the freeway, and a new bridge to the east at Southeast 192nd Avenue. All three are described as “toll-free” proposals in the voters’ pamphlet.The measures don’t ask voters to favor one idea over another. Each is a separate measure, so a resident could vote in favor of all three, against all three, or any combination he or she chooses.On light rail and bus rapid transit, two measures will ask if Clark County commissioners should oppose any such project that does not first gain approval through a county-wide vote. One measure will ask the question for light rail, the other for bus rapid transit.The five transportation-related measures are among six nonbinding votes that Clark County commissioners put on the ballot. The sixth relates to the sale and use of fireworks.Ballots for the Nov. 5 election will be mailed Oct. 16.On the transportation measures, commissioners could use the election results to guide their votes on the C-Tran board of directors, the Southwest Washington Regional Transportation Council and other committees.last_img read more

The Woman Collective Wants Music Festivals To Be A Safe Space For

first_img How Festivals Can Be A Safe Space For ‘Every One’ woman-collective-wants-music-festivals-be-safe-space-every-one The Woman. Collective Wants Music Festivals To Be A Safe Space For “Every One” Facebook News https://twitter.com/RecordingAcad/status/1081960838997655553 Teaming up with Goldenvoice Productions, L.A.-based consulting agency woman. are making it their mission to create safe spaces for all music festival goersRachel BrodskyGRAMMYs Apr 11, 2019 – 11:32 am In 2017, immediately before the now-infamous allegations against disgraced Hollywood titan Harvey Weinstein came out, Michelle Pesce, a nightlife maven and DJ who performs under the name DJ PESCE, was having a casual lunch with two other DJ friends and music industry vets, Daisy O’Dell and Ana Calderon. Eventually, the conversation began to revolve around one question: “Why are all clubs and bars in L.A. owned by men?”“We talked about our experiences, and how soul-crushing some of [them] are,” Pesce, who spun tracks at Oscars, Golden Globes, and GRAMMYs parties earlier this year, tells the Recording Academy. “Some of these happenings in bars and clubs. And how much ego is involved… a lot of groups, not only women, but a lot of groups don’t feel safe and in a lot of nightlife venues.”Together, along with producer and marketing pro Kate Mazzuca, the group founded the Los Angeles-based consulting agency woman., which organizes curated industry events, brand collaborations, women’s workshops, safe space activations, philanthropic partnerships, and more, with the mission of creating “both emotional and physical spaces that are both engaging and inclusive to everyone, regardless of gender, background, and identity.””Coming from the entertainment industry, we understood many of the problems, but not necessarily the solutions,” explains O’Dell. “I immediately reached out to Eleuthera Lisch because I knew her expertise and ability to conceptualize highly specialized protocols and structure into a functional activation was imperative for us to be able to do this work with real impact. Her decades of experience in street safety and social justice and, really, just her sheer brilliance at adapting that work for this specialized environment, uniquely qualified her as we joined forces and named her Executive Director of one of woman.’s first major initiatives.” Email Twitter Now, as 2019 music festival season commences—most immediately at Coachella—the team behind woman. are working to get the word out about soteria.—a comprehensive safe-space initiative that is strategically designed for large-scale cultural gatherings and festivals—and “every one,” a joint safe-space effort with Goldenvoice Productions that seeks to ensure all festival goers feel safe and comfortable while they attend. Run by Goldenvoice Director of Equity and Inclusion Veline Mojarro, with additional oversight from Goldenvoice’s Morgan Donly and Coachella and Stagecoach “every one” production manager Lauren Montgomery, “every one” offers safety ambassadors throughout the grounds, trained counselors on-site, all-gender restrooms, ADA accessibility, and a zero tolerance policy on assault and harassment.Coachella attendees will have 24-hour access to mental health professionals specializing in sexual assault and harassment. “Every one” will also resurface later this month at Stagecoach Festival in Indio from April 26-28.”There is so much power in woman.’s platform—as industry DJs, producers and pop culture curators—to amplify this critical shift,” Mojarro said in a statement. “Their passion, commitment and willingness to co-create this initiative for ‘every Oone’ allows us to highlight and uplift the contributions of a fierce new team developing innovative practices in festival safety.”Speaking specifically to their original soteria. program, which is run in tandem with Executive Director Eleuthera Lisch, Pesce says, “Our initial goal was to open a bar/events space and run it in a more evolved fashion. Of course we want inspired DJs and musicians and to fill it with guests we trust. A level of privacy and safety to be truly free.  It’s also the small things: having female security, front door personnel that make sure you’re getting into the correct Uber, sustainability. Drug-testing strips that you can test your cocktails if you want to. Gender-neutral bathrooms. Just a safer and more inclusive approach to nightlife and not a lot of attitude-at-the-door kind of stuff.”Named for the Greek goddess of safety, salvation, and preservation from harm, soteria. formally began in 2018 at the FORM Festival in Arizona and at Summit, L.A., and provided festivalgoers with first-responder “Safety Ambassadors,” crisis de-escalation professionals, licensed healthcare professionals.”There’s 24 hour access to clinicians and to self care care: coloring books, yoga mats, noise cancelling headphones and aroma therapy,” says Pesce, describing what a festival goer can expect to find in a typical soteria. space. “Sometimes it’s as simple as needing safe passage. We were in downtown L.A. [for Summit]. Some people weren’t comfortable leaving one of the parties at three in the morning and walking to their hotel.” Also on site at Coachella will be the clinical coordinator of “every one,” Dr. Paula Helu-Brown, who has worked extensively in relationship and sexual violence prevention at USC. “I’ve being going to music festivals and concerts since I was a teenager, and eventually I moved to L.A. and started working at record labels, touring with artists and then touring myself as a DJ,” says Calderon. “All along those two-plus decades of experiencing music festivals around the world, first as a fan then a music label boss and eventually as an artist, I felt a personal need for a space like this and would have been so much more comfortable going to festivals alone knowing these services existed.”So, what’s next for soteria.? Pesce and the team plan to bring their safe space back to FORM Festival next month. Beyond that, they’re doubling down on building awareness that a space like theirs—even if it isn’t theirs—must exist in the music, nightlife and festival industries.”We want to truly shift culture within the festival space,” elaborates Pesce. “With an evolved approach to safety, mental health, sustainability and inclusion. Part of the soteria. initiative is about inclusion of all races, gender, sexual orientation, age, ability and identity.”The two goals for this,” she continues, “are to let people know that they are not alone and that the support is available and to push other festivals to step up. We just want all attendees to know that this matters. Your safety, your peace of mind. It all matters.”So, listen up, Coachella attendees: To access “every one” spaces and services, look on your festival maps and keep an eye out for on-site locations, ask at the info kiosks or locate an “every one” ambassador, who will be outfitted in teal team T-shirts with the “every one” logo.Coachella Announces “Every One” Initiative To Fight Harassment And AssaultRead morelast_img read more

Return those made to disappear BNP to govt

first_imgAdiba Islam (R), daughter of Juba Dal leader Parvez Hossain who has been missing since 2013, passes her days in depression. Photo: Saiful IslamClaiming that the party’s more than a thousand leaders and activists have been made to disappear since 2009, the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) on Wednesday called upon the government to take steps for returning the victims to their families and stop such crime against humanity, reports UNB.Speaking at a press conference, BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir also alleged that the current Bangladesh government does not observe the UN’s ‘International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances’ as it has been indulging in such crime and terrorism.“The incidents of enforced disappearance are growing gradually. We’re observing with a grave concern that the intensity the enforced disappearance marked a sharp over the last one week. Making any one disappear is a crime against humanity, and we can’t allow such heinous to continue to occur,” said BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.He further said, “It’s the responsibility of the government to find those who were made to disappear. So, on this international day, we again demand the government return all those were made to disappear to their families and stop the crime immediately.”BNP arranged the press conference at its Naya Paltan central office marking the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances. At the beginning of the press meet, the party presented a documentary on those of its leaders and activists were made to disappear.Earlier, the Munshiganj unit of BNP also arranged a programme at the party office and provided 20 families of enforced disappearance victims with finical support ahead of Eid-ul-Azha.Fakhrul said according to Ain O Salish Kendra around 539 people were made to disappear since 2009 to June this year while right body Odhikar put the figure at 384. “But the actual figure is much higher.”According their party’s count, he said, more than one thousand people were subjected to enforced disappearance. “Of course, some of them returned to their families later. “I’ll give you the exact figure later.”Replying to a question, the BNP leader said there was no single incident of enforced disappearance during their rule. “There’s only allegation of some incidents of extrajudicial killing during our time. But, disappearance is a new phenomenon which emerged after the current government assumed office in 2009.”Fakhrul said the government is indulging in enforced disappearance to eliminate those actively work in favour of democracy, people and the independence and sovereignty, and suppress and make silent others by spreading panic.He said Bangladesh has now turned into a safe valley of state-sponsored terrorism and extrajudicial killing where the incidents of enforced disappearance are taking place regularly. “The opposition party men and common people are being subjected to enforced disappearance.”He said the family members of the victims and rights bodies are pointing finger at police and RAB for the incidents.Fakhrul said Belarus’ honourary consul to Bangladesh Aniruddha Kumar Roy, a BNP Chittagong unit leader and businessman Sajjad Ahmed, a banker Shamim and Kalyan Party general secretary MM Aminur Rahman were made to disappear last week.Of them, he said, Shamim was later returned to his family.last_img read more

Gadgets Pioneer speaker system rocks out

first_img Citation: Gadgets: Pioneer speaker system rocks out (2010, September 10) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-09-gadgets-speaker.html The Pioneer XW-NAS3 speaker system Gadgets: Seek out ‘green’ gadgets in celebration of Earth Day This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. To sum it up if you want to read no further: The Pioneer XW-NAS3 speaker system for iPods and iPhones rocks the house even at the highest volume levels. The unit costs a little more than many similar systems, but in this case you certainly get your money’s worth. As the unit was unpacked and before it was turned on, it was obvious this is a well-constructed and heavy (12 pounds) device. Packed into the system is a pair of 52mm full-range speakers, along with a separate down-firing subwoofer. Once you dock your iPod and turn it on, it’s obvious why this is a great unit. In reviews, I’ve often remarked that a system provides sound but won’t be the life of a party. That’s not the case with this one; it will fill a room with great-sounding, clear music. The attractive desktop unit measures 8.3-by-16.5-by-5.8 inches with an attractive glossy black finish (also available in white) and includes a wireless remote. It becomes Bluetooth-enabled for an additional purchase ($99) of an adapter, allowing broadcast from smartphones equipped with Bluetooth technology. With the video output ports, users can add a monitor for viewing movies broadcast over the unit’s speakers. Details: pioneerelectronics.com, $449.00 is the suggested price but Amazon has it for $335.56 ___ Regardless of how you store your cell phone, it’s easy to leave behind it or other high-priced items so attractive to thieves. With the keychain-sized ZOMM paired to any Bluetooth-enabled cell phone or other high-priced smartphone, a wireless leash is formed between the phone and the owner. Just like any other Bluetooth cell phone option, pair it up with a phone to function as an adequate hands-free device. Calls are answered and heard over a built-in speaker; the microphone includes noise-cancelling technology.center_img (c) 2010, Gregg Ellman. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. Explore further The main function of the device is to alert users when the ZOMM separates from its partner. Once that separation occurs, the ZOMM vibrates, lights flash and an alarm sounds. If you separate the two on purpose, simply press a button on the ZOMM to cancel the alarm. A nice safety feature allows owners to activate a panic button, which sounds an alarm up to 40db and calls an emergency number, which can be programmed by the user. According to company tests, users can expect up to three days of battery life before the lithium-ion battery needs recharging with the included micro-USB wall charger or via any USB port on a computer. Details: zomm.com, $79.99 at Best Buy ___ It’s interesting to see how many accessory product e-mails I get after Apple makes any kind of product announcement. To the inbox first, just minutes after last week’s new iPod line was announced, came a press release from Scosche announcing cases for the new touch and nano. The announcement included six new stylish case designs for the new Apple products — each of which offer added functionality and superior protection. These include my favorite “flyer friendly feature” of the company’s signature kickBACK case. When in use with the kickBACK, the new iPod touch gen 4 media player can be positioned sideways for landscape video viewing. The case is built with a polycarbonate exterior along with a flexible impact resistant rubber interior. Also included is the Scosche beefKASE t4 featuring genuine leather back and a polycarbonate shell to provide a unique professional look and feel. Among the announcements for the nano are the tightGRIP case packs. These are silicone enclosures to provide grip and protection and come in packs of 3 with choices of black, blue, clear, pink, purple or red. Users of the new iPod touch can also get the silicone enclosures in 3 packs in black, blue and red choices. Check the company’s website for the full line of new cases and accessories, which range in price from $14.99 to $39.99. Details: scosche.comlast_img read more

Get finest jewellery collection for upcoming festive plans

first_imgHeritage jewellery-house Shyam Sundar Co. Jewellers launched their latest showroom located at 131A, Rashbehari Avenue, Kolkata. Following the existing stores across the city, this latest store offers a complete range of Adi-Kriti, Classic Calcutta, Shubh-vivah, Samudra, Butterfly, The Rainbow Collection, Bishnupur Collection and other contemporary sets. Renowned actor Rituparna Sengupta, vocalist Ustad Rashid Khan, Mayor Counsel Debasis Kumar, Swami Purnatmananda, Bakul Saha along with Arpita Saha and Rupak Saha from Shyam Sundar Co. Jewellers were present at the auspicious moment. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfShyam Sundar Co. Jewellers started their journey long back in 1960 at Agartala and have four stores across Tripura. They launched its first store at 125, Rashbehari Avenue, Kolkata in August 2011. Since then, the brand has two more showrooms in Kolkata- Behala, and Barasat respectively. “It’s our endeavour to offer our valued customers more space and making it a shoppers’ paradise. The store is open on all days from morning to night. For Valentine’s day, Shyam Sundar Co. Jewellers have some exciting offers for their customers – assured gold coin with every purchase, special discounts on gold and diamond jewellery making charges, and another attractive gift with every purchase”, Rupak Saha, Director, Shyam Sundar Co. Jewellers, elucidated during the function. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe flagship store would be exhibiting an exclusive collection with a combination of traditional and contemporary designs. The 2,500 sq ft. showroom boasts of its finest collections in Gold, Diamond, Polki, Meenakari and Jadau jewellery. It is an amalgamation of the finest of jewels handcrafted to suit one’s taste and finesse. One can experience the exclusive pieces in gold, diamonds and precious stones in the upcoming festive and wedding season.With elegant interiors, Shyam Sundar Co. Jewellers’ new store is fashionable and individualistic, providing not just value for money but a collection of the finest quality. It’s courteous, warm store staff, and homely ambience completes the ultimate shopping experience.last_img read more

Von Miller agrees to six year 114 million deal with Broncos 70

first_imgMiller and the Broncos struck the deal as the zero hour of the franchise tag deadline is set to expire today. If no agreement had been reached, the Broncos would have franchise tagged Miller, who said he would not play under the franchise tag when he appeared on Chelsea Handler’s Netflix show. The contentious contract negotiations between Miller and the Broncos have ended with Miller signing a six-year $114 million contract with $70 million fully guaranteed. Sources: #Broncos & Super Bowl MVP Von Miller are closing in on a deal for his 6-yr, $114M contract with $70M fully guaranteed by Mar of ’18— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 15, 2016 Von Miller can finally put John Elway back into the  picture he cropped him out of at the Broncos team visit to the White House. Miller quickly took to Twitter to express his excitement.FOR LIFE pic.twitter.com/ayvzpJ1WZh— Von Miller (@Millerlite40) July 15, 2016 “It’s been a great 5 years, here’s to 6 more amazing years! Thanks Bronco Nation, I love you and I appreciate you! pic.twitter.com/2EEcgXylgV— Von Miller (@Millerlite40) July 15, 2016 With his new contract in hand, the Super Bowl MVP can now switch his focus from sacks of money to sacks of quarterbacks, as the Broncos look to defend their Super Bowl title. Advertisementlast_img read more

Best North Face Backpacks for College

first_imgLooking for the best North Face backpacks for college? If so, you’ve come to the right place. North Face backpacks offer everything students could possible need from a back-to-school bag. These large capacity packs are hyper-durable, water-resistant, and comfortable to carry. With a variety of designs and colors to choose from, The North Face (TNF) backpacks are just as stylish as they are reliable. What’s more, they’re backed by TNF’s lifetime warranty for added peace of mind.  So if you’re bargain hunting, we’ve hand-picked the best North Face backpacks for school along with the best online prices. So whether you’re looking for something sporty or roomy, you can’t go wrong with any of these picks. Also be sure to check out our guide to the best backpacks for deals on all brands. Jester Backpack: was $65 now $45 @ AmazonThe North Face Jester backpack is the ideal campus backpack. It has a 30 liter capacity, a padded 15-inch laptop sleeve, and a front organization pocket with mesh water bottle holders. There are also built-in bungee cords for carrying a jacket or bike helmet hands-free. Amazon has the Moab Khaki Camo Print design on sale for an all-time low price of $45. View DealWomen’s Jester Backpack: was $65 now $48 @ MoosejawThis streamlined North Face Jester Women’s backpack features a 28 liter capacity, a padded 15-inch laptop sleeve, a front organization pocket, and mesh water bottle holders. Adjustable bungee cords on the front make it easy to stow a jacket or bike helmet for hands-free travel. Moosejaw currently it on sale for just $48.99.View DealBerkeley Backpack: was $65 now $38 @ MoosejawThe Berkeley is an iconic North Face backpack with dual organizational compartments and 25 liters of space. Moosejaw has it on sale for $38. View DealRecon Backpack: was $99 now $69 @ ZapposThe 30-liter North Face Recon backpack is ultra-durable and boasts improved suspension for all-day comfort. It features plenty of compartments and pockets to stash away your gear. Mesh water bottle pockets help you stay hydrated while you’re on the go. Zappos has it on sale for $30 off retail price.View DealBorealis Backpack: was $89 now $55 @ Mountain StealsThe classic 28-liter North Face Borealis backpack features an updated suspension system. There’s also a padded main compartment, a tablet sleeve, and a dedicated 17-inch laptop sleeve to protect your gear. Own it now for $55 from Mountain Steals. View DealKaban Backpack: was $129 now $64 @ Mountain StealsMade of ultra-durable, water resistant 900D polyester, the North Face Kaban backpack is virtually indestructible. It features a 26-liter capacity and has a dedicated sleeve to protect laptops up to 15 inches. Mountain Steals currently has it on sale for $64. View DealPivoter Backpack: was $79 now $54 @ Moosejaw The 27-liter North Face Women’s Pivoter Backpack features a roomy main compartment with a padded laptop sleep. The front compartment has a padded tablet sleeve along with additional organizational pockets. Snag one from Moosejaw for just $54. View DealIsabella Women’s Backpack: was $85 now $63 @ MoosejawThe North Face Women’s Isabella backpack is a streamlined 21-liter capacity women’s backpack. It offers a zippered front panel and a dedicated 12-inch tablet/laptop sleeve in the main compartment. Moosejaw has it on sale for $63.View DealDid’t find the right backpack for your needs? Make sure  to check out our guide to the best Nike backpacks.last_img read more

Skip unveils its first custom electric scooter

first_imgSkip is beginning to test the first electric scooter that the startup built entirely in-house. They’re not quite ready for prime time, but Skip expects to deploy them in San Francisco this October.That’s notably when San Francisco plans to allow service providers to deploy electric scooters as part of the city’s first permanent permitting program. Skip’s current permit expires on October 14, but the company plans to reapply for a permit, Skip CEO Sanjay Dastoor told TechCrunch.For riders, they will likely notice the sheer difference in the size of this scooter compared to Skip’s previous models. Skip’s S3 is much larger than the company’s previous models in order to help riders feel more stable and secure on the scooter. The S3 also ditches the regenerative brake for a traditional hand brake and rear foot brake.This comes shortly after Skip announced it would bring back its scooters to Washington, D.C. following some battery-related issues that led to fires.The scooter fire in D.C. was caused by a damaged battery, though, it’s not clear if it was intentional or accidental. With this new scooter model, the battery was custom built for the shared electric scooter service use case and is also completely enclosed, which should help prevent it from getting damaged, Dastoor said.This swappable battery should also help with unit economics, given that it won’t need to be replaced as often. The battery pack, Dastoor said, can last for about 20 rides, with a range of 35 miles per charge. The custom battery also features diagnostic capabilities that can detect if it’s wet. Though, the battery is designed to be able to survive submerged in 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes.“What we’re looking at now is how do we actually do the swap,” Dastoor said. “We’re changing the model from taking vehicles off of the road to swapping out the batteries.”Dastoor said he currently envisions a warehouse with a bunch of electric vehicles lined up charging the batteries. Given that the current model relies on independent contractors to take vehicles home to charge them, you could imagine a world in which the independent contractors instead are responsible for picking up fresh batteries at the warehouse and then swapping them out with the depleted ones.Previous models of Skip’s scooters had swappable batteries and even cameras, but the cameras didn’t make it into the new version.“We are testing a variety of sensor systems to solve some of our key priorities, like parking compliance, rider safety and etiquette, and reliable location tracking,” Dastoor said in a follow-up email.And thanks to the modular design of the scooter, Skip can easily add and remove elements, such as cameras, locks and even regenerative braking.Bird, Uber and Lyft get another chance to apply for electric scooter permits in SFlast_img read more

Fannie Mae Slow Pace of Recovery The New Normal

first_img Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies GDP Home Prices Home Sales Investors Jobs Lenders & Servicers Processing Service Providers Unemployment 2013-01-24 Krista Franks Brock Fannie Mae: Slow Pace of Recovery ‘The New Normal’ Share in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicingcenter_img While some are asking when the economy will return to normal, others are wondering if this prolonged period of below-potential GDP growth is actually the “”new normal,”” according to a “”report””:http://www.fanniemae.com/portal/research-and-analysis/emma.html from “”Fannie Mae’s””:http://www.fanniemae.com (FNMA/OTC) Economic & Strategic Research Group. [IMAGE]For 2013 and 2014, Fannie Mae projects a continuation of below-potential economic growth, with a 2 percent growth rate expected for 2013, similar to the lackluster performance seen in 2012.””What we view as sub-par economic growth may actually continue to be par for the course for the near term,”” said Fannie Mae Chief economist Doug Duncan. “”We expect the fiscal policy climate to act as a drag on growth this year with possible implications on the direction of the economy in the long term.””According to Fannie Mae’s report, potentially strong headwinds such as the fiscal cliff and ongoing debt ceiling are likely to suppress consumer spending in the first half off 2013. [COLUMN_BREAK]But, as Fannie Mae points out, “”[o]nce policy makers resolve the short-term fiscal policy problems, growth should accelerate in the second half of 2013 and carry forward into 2014.”” While GDP growth was described as “”subdued”” in 2012, Fannie Mae noted a couple noteworthy events: the unemployment rate falling below 8 percent for the first time since 2009 and the improvement in home prices, which coincided with a positive annual contribution from residential investment to GDP growth. The housing sector continues to be viewed as the bright spot in the economy, and Fannie Mae says housing’s contribution to economic growth should increase this year and in coming years. The GSE also pointed to the labor market and low mortgage rates as key driving forces behind the housing recovery. With home sales, home prices, and home building activity appearing to trend upwards, Fannie Mae expects to see further increases. Housing starts are expected to grow from about 775,000 units to 950,000 units in 2013. The report did point out that the projected level is far below the peak of more than 2 million units in 2005, but it will still be more than 60 percent above the annual record low in 2010. As for home sales, Fannie Mae expects existing home sales to rise to an annual pace of around 5 million units in 2013 and 2014 and eventually reach nearly 6 million units in 2016. Mortgage rates are expected to end 2013 slightly under 4 percent at around 3.8 percent and rise to around 4.2 percent at the end of 2014. Mortgage originations should also increase and reach $642 billion in 2013 from a forecast of $518 billion in 2012, while refinance activity is expected to slow down and fall to $961 billion from a projected $1.4 trillion in 2012. January 24, 2013 387 Views last_img read more

Viking has released three new 2020 Danube River cr

first_imgViking has released three new 2020 Danube River cruise itineraries that will allow guests to experience the world-famous Passion Play in Oberammergau, Germany — an opportunity that comes along only once a decade.· 10-day Oberammergau & Romantic Danube from Oberammergau to Budapest, priced from $6,395 per person in a Standard stateroom.· 11-day Oberammergau, Salzburg & the Danube from Oberammergau to Budapest, priced from $6,595 per person in a Standard stateroom.· 12-day Oberammergau, Salzburg & Cruise from Oberammergau to Budapest, priced from $6,995 per person in a Standard stateroom.As part of Viking’s popular Explorer Sale, guests who book a Viking 2020 Oberammergau river cruise before 31 March 2019 can fly to Europe for just $995 per person.“Given how fast our original 2020 Oberammergau river cruises sold out, we encourage guests to book these new itineraries as soon as possible to avoid any disappointment,” said Lubica Sibikova, Operations and Product Manager at Viking. OberammergauRiver CruisesVikinglast_img read more