Congressional App Challenge Director Rachel Décoste Get on Board the Tech Train

first_imgRachel Décoste is the director of the Congressional App Challenge (CAC).In this exclusive interview, Décoste discusses with TechNewsWorld the importance of opening the world of coding to all students. CAC Director RachelDécosteTechNewsWorld: What is the Congressional App Challenge, and why is it a good thing for young people and for the country?Rachel Décoste: The Congressional App Challenge is a national contest for K-12 students to learn to code, create an app, and submit it in their district challenge. That means we are across the whole country. The goal is to connect members of Congress with the budding tech community, and to encourage the youth in America to learn skills that will make them competitive for the jobs of the 21st century.TNW: Why is important for young people to learn coding?Décoste: Coding is one of the most in-demand skills. There’s a myth out there that you need to have this skill only if you work with computers, but as society develops, you’re going to see coding in every field. This is a skill that’s needed in all job sectors. The jobs of tomorrow will require, if not coding, at least an understanding of how it works. If our children are going to be competitive on the global scale, it’s going to be a skill they have to develop, and the earlier the better.There are many app challenges across America, but a lot of them are designed to select the best coders from people who already have experience. The Congressional App Challenge, though, has a low barrier to entry. It’s a way to get started. It’s planting the seed, and it’s important to foster those early stages of coding.The CAC goes a long way to planting those seeds that will grow towards a competitive American work force of tomorrow. Coding is a basic knowledge tool that children need in order to be competitive for the jobs of the future. The train is going there, and you want to get on board.TNW: What stands in the way of young people — including both girls and kids in underserved communities — from entering STEM fields? How can these challenges be overcome?Décoste: At a certain age in high school, girls perceive math and technology as a man’s or boy’s field, and that is a psychological barrier for some girls.For minorities, there’s a notion that you can’t become what you can’t see. We don’t see minorities included in many of the flashier tech companies, and so there is less of an aspiration to become something that you don’t think is for you.What the CAC does very well is to have exceeded the diversity in the tech sector. It’s 30 percent girls participating, and we have large numbers of Latinos and African Americans and even Native Americans. We’re changing people’s minds — people who thought that wasn’t a part of their trajectory. We’ve convinced them that this is something within their grasp.TNW: Describe your career.Décoste: I came into this organically. When I was a kid, my immigrant parents saw that computers would be beneficial in school. They bought our first computer in 1987. I remember we would write our essays on that, and this is before Windows. It had a black screen with a prompt — that’s what you saw.With the computer came a little book that was called GW-BASIC, a basic programming language. I stumbled upon this and started playing with the computer. I didn’t know it was called programming. With the computer, I created an app for my little sister for math. The computer would ask questions, like what is 3×4, and it would continue asking questions. That was the first app that I did, and I was 13 or 14 at the time. I took it as far as I could, there on that computer in my parents’ basement.A couple of years later, I went to engineering school. In the first year, there’s a mandatory coding class, and when I got there, I thought, this looks familiar. That’s when I realized that I’d been coding. I enjoyed it and made it my major.I created a Whitney Houston fan website in 1996, before the Web was a big thing. The growth was unbelievable, and that got me in the news in a magazine in 1998. It had an article about this new thing called “Web fan pages.” It goes through a whole bunch of people who had made fan sites. The final paragraph said something like Web surfers tend to be white and male, and this is why Rachel Décoste stands out. She’s black and a pioneer.Lo and behold, 20 years later, I’m spreading that same kind of gospel.After that, I worked in air traffic control systems and other fields. I moved up to management, but I was always involved in tech. When I graduated, I was the only woman of color in my graduating class. The needle has not moved all that much. What I hope to do now is move that needle in a more tangible way.TNW: What advice would you give young people, especially girls and women, who want to get into tech fields?Décoste: The world is your oyster. The first computer programmer was Ada Lovelace. She was a girl. This is our field. We created it, and we can still make our place in it.center_img Vivian Wagner has been an ECT News Network reporter since 2008. Her main areas of focus are technology, business, CRM, e-commerce, privacy, security, arts, culture and diversity. She has extensive experience reporting on business and technology for a varietyof outlets, including The Atlantic, The Establishment and O, The Oprah Magazine. She holds a PhD in English with a specialty in modern American literature and culture. She received a first-place feature reporting award from the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists.Email Vivian.last_img read more

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Voice Control for Connected Entertainment Challenges and Opportunities

first_imgInteroperability Demands Voice vs. Remote Consumer adoption of voice-controlled CE devices places new interoperability demands on product manufacturers. Ideally, all consumer-purchased products would work perfectly with each other. However, the reality of this level of interoperability remains elusive, with about 10 percent of consumers returning a CE device citing interoperability as the reason for the return.Issues ranging from high-end stereo speakers not being recognized by smart assistants to smart TVs failing to accurately understand voice commands from a shared smart speaker are all too common.Voice-AI systems remain weak in the contextual awareness required to properly respond based on which device the consumer is using, where the user is, what time it is, etc. These variables may require different responses from the virtual assistant; however, typical existing systems fail to account for them.Increasing the number of variables also increases ambiguity levels, which AI systems struggle to address. Device vendors must build greater awareness levels into their systems in order for them to deliver more accurate responses to user questions, or risk losing their customers to a more capable voice-AI system. Smart speakers are becoming a more common platform for controlling connected entertainment due to a rapid increase in popularity and ease of use. Household penetration of smart speakers is expected to reach 47 percent among U.S. broadband households by 2022, based on Parks Associates estimates.New entrants in the connected consumer electronics market, including Samsung, Roku and Facebook, are likely to make announcements about new voice-controlled speakers at CES 2019 in order to claim a share of this new voice-first CE market.The average U.S. broadband household in 2018 had 8.8 connected computing, entertainment, or mobile devices, all with unique user controls or interfaces. Voice technology is emerging as a solution to this complexity, offering a single interface for all connected devices.Consumers have expressed a strong interest in this approach, with more than one-third of U.S. broadband households finding it very appealing to use voice to control their entertainment devices. Use of voice-controlled search is held back due to limited product availability, inexperience or lack of familiarity with the technology, or simply old consumer habits. Consumers increasingly are becoming familiar with using voice commands to operate their smartphones, though. Last year, nearly 40 percent of U.S. broadband households with a smartphone used some form of voice recognition software. It therefore is likely that consumers will become more interested in using voice commands to control other common consumer devices, including connected entertainment systems.The consumer electronics industry is weathering a rough spot as cellphones, tablets and flat-panel TVs hit saturation levels. Newer product categories, such as wireless speakers, are eliminating the need for more conventional electronic devices. Furthermore, the growing popularity of streaming digital media and the pervasiveness of smartphones are driving entire product categories — such as camcorders, MP3 players and GPS navigators — into obsolescence.Faced with stagnating sales growth, the industry has been turning to categories such as wireless speakers and smart TVs as drivers of future growth. Rapid advancements in voice technology enable wireless speakers to become smart speakers, and smart TVs to assume a wider role in the CE ecosystem.Manufacturers of other CE products, such as streaming media players, have expanded their product portfolios with new voice-enabled models to claim their share of a quickly growing voice-controlled entertainment market.center_img However, despite voice-controlled entertainment’s advantages for searching and streaming content, consumer adoption remains low, with only 3 percent of U.S. broadband households using voice commands when watching video. Craig Leslie is a senior research analyst at Parks Associates. As the number of connected entertainment devices per household increases, so do the number of remotes. Despite the desire for a standardized user interface for all their CE devices, consumer familiarity with handheld remotes make them the de facto standard for controlling a CE device.Just as the TV remote liberated the viewer from the laborious process of physically moving to the television set every time they wanted to make an adjustment, voice control is freeing consumers from the cumbersome process of manually thumbing a remote to search through a channel guide or key in a title on an alphabetic keypad on screen to locate content.Voice interfaces simplify the experience by utilizing the user’s verbal commands to make adjustments, change the volume, etc. A person wishing to view the news need only say “CNN” to be directed to that channel. Voice command also presents a simple means of deeply searching a library. Commands such as “find all free Tom Hanks adventure movies” would be difficult and slow to enter on a manual remote, but effortless via voice.That being said, device makers will continue to make manual remotes available in order to please customers who want manual control, and in the event that voice-based functionality is unavailable or ineffective. Incorporating voice into the remote may incentivize consumers to try voice, but until users see a benefit to using voice, many will simply default to manual control.The consumer movement to voice-controlled entertainment is still in its early stages; however, interest in these applications is quickly growing and impacting purchasing decisions. Companies wishing to capitalize on this growing market need to carefully develop their market strategies and plan for both short- and long-term success.Success will be dependent not only on a product’s design and quality, but also on its ability to provide a more satisfying user experience than a consumer already can enjoy using traditional control methods.last_img read more

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Scientists pinpoint TIM3 protein as next potential target for immunotherapy treatments

first_imgOct 31 2018Following the 2018 Nobel Prize for Medicine, global attention is now more than ever turned toward the promise of immunotherapy in oncology. An international team’s work has shed new light on a molecule called TIM-3 that might play a key role in the regulation of the immune response. Scientists and physicians from the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC), the Montreal Children’s Hospital of the MUHC (MCH-MUHC), and McGill University in collaboration with French teams from AP-HP, Inserm, Université Paris-Descartes and the Imagine Institute at the Necker-Enfants Malades Hospital, have singled out this protein as the next potential target for immunotherapy treatments in patients with cancer and other diseases.These results are being published in the journal Nature Genetics on Monday, October 29.Researchers found that when the TIM-3 protein is suppressed or inactive, the immune system becomes completely “unleashed” and T cells are uncontrollably over-activated, resulting in a rare form of lymphoma (a form of cancer that starts in the lymphocytes) called subcutaneous panniculitis T lymphoma (LTSCP).The team of researchers has identified two founder mutations at the origin of this syndrome, which act directly on the TIM-3 protein, preventing it from expressing itself on the surface of the lymphocytes and attacking the cancer cells. They also found that this form of lymphoma associated with over-activation of the immune response was more widespread than they first thought. Both mutations have been found in individuals of East Asian, Australian, and Polynesian origin as well as in patients of European origin.This work was based on findings from the teams at the RI-MUHC and the MCH-MUHC, showing the same rare form of lymphoma in brother and sister. After sequencing their genomes, the researchers discovered that both patients carried the same mutation on a gene called HAVCR2 that codes for TIM-3 and that it was transmitted by their parents.In discussions with colleagues in Australia and France, the team realized they too had similar cases of patients with the same mutation (Tyr82Cys) who seemed to be mostly of East Asian or Polynesian descent. Another mutation (Ile97Met), on the same gene, was identified in patients of European origin. A functional study of these mutations, conducted in Paris, confirms their responsibility in this new genetic disease. In all, 17 pediatric and adult cases were the subject of this scientific publication.”The discovery of this mutation has shed light on a previously undescribed mechanism that allowed us to explain both the clinical presentation and the very particular evolution of these lymphomas under treatment,” explains Dr. David Michonneau from the hematology-transplant service in the Saint-Louis AP-HP hospital.Related StoriesLiving a healthy lifestyle may help offset genetic risk of dementiaGene modulation goes wireless hacking the “boss gene”Fungal infection study identifies specific genetic vulnerability among Hmong peopleAccording to Dr. Geneviève de Saint Basile from the laboratory “Molecular basis of immune homeostasis abnormalities” Inserm at the Imagine Institute and the center for the study of immunodeficiencies at Necker-Children’s Hospital AP-HP, “The results of this collaboration demonstrate the regulatory role of the TIM-3 molecule in humans and they also provide strong arguments for reconsidering this entity as an inflammatory rather than a malignant pathology, and for promoting the use of immunosuppressive drugs in its treatment.””For these patients with this rare form of lymphoma, our results reinforce the use of immunosuppressive therapies that will provide much better results and fewer side effects than cytotoxic chemotherapy,” says Dr. Nada Jabado, who is a clinician-scientist from the Child Health and Human Development Program at the RI-MUHC and a professor of Pediatrics and Human Genetics at McGill University in Montreal.Researchers are now trying to see if patients with autoimmune diseases such as lupus – a disease where the immune system turns against the body itself – may have some TIM-3 dysfunction. There would also be promising avenues for the treatment and understanding of cancers, infectious diseases such as HIV or even malaria as well as multiple sclerosis. Source:https://muhc.ca/newsroom/news/scientific-breakthrough-promising-new-target-immunotherapylast_img read more

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People from cold regions tend to drink more finds study

first_img Source:https://aasldpubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/hep.30315 3d illustration of diseased liver. Image Credit: Explode / Shutterstock According to lead author Ramon Bataller, associate director of the Pittsburgh Liver Research Centre this had been speculated before but had never been proven. He said that it was always wondered why people in Russia or Wisconsin drink more than others and the answer has been that because the regions are colder. He said that this study connects not only alcohol consumption and colder climate but also the weather and alcoholic liver cirrhosis. Experts have said that drinking leads to a feeling of warmth because alcohol can increase the blood flow to the skin. Alcohol use and cold climate with lack of sunlight are also associated with increased depression rates, experts opine. By Dr. Ananya Mandal, MDNov 20 2018A new study has shown that people who live in cold and dark regions tend to be heavy drinkers. The data comes from participants of around 193 countries and shows that there is a connection between weather, alcohol consumption as well as alcohol associated liver disease. The study results appear in the latest issue of the journal Hepatology. Further Reading The study shows that cold climate and lack of sunlight in associated with increased alcohol use as seen from data correlated from World Health Organisation (WHO) and the World Meteorological Organisation. The researchers note that with decrease in total hours of daylight and average daily temperatures, the alcohol intake person also tends to rise as does the percentage of population that drinks alcohol. There is also a significant rise in binge drinking as the temperatures plummet and days shorten.The researchers have suggested that there should be higher pricing and stricter laws regarding alcohol use and advertising in the winter months to prevent alcohol use. Studies have shown that no amount of alcohol is safe for consumption. Alcohol use has been linked to myriad of diseases including those of the liver as well as several cancers.Following this study the WHO is also all set to release new data on alcohol consumption across Europe at a meeting in Edinburgh. The data shows that nearly half of all adult male population are at risk of short and long term health and social problems associated with harmful drinking. What is liver disease? Liver disease causes Liver disease diagnosis Liver disease treatmentlast_img read more

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Magnesium may play important role in optimizing vitamin D levels study shows

Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Dec 14 2018A randomized trial by Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center researchers indicates that magnesium optimizes vitamin D status, raising it in people with deficient levels and lowering it in people with high levels.The study reported in the December issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition is important because of controversial findings from ongoing research into the association of vitamin D levels with colorectal cancer and other diseases, including a recent report from the VITAL trial. It gave confirmation to a prior observational study in 2013 by the researchers that linked low magnesium levels with low vitamin D levels.The trial also revealed something new — that magnesium had a regulating effect in people with high vitamin D levels. The research provides the first evidence that magnesium may play an important role in optimizing vitamin D levels and preventing conditions related to vitamin D levels.Qi Dai, MD, PhD, Ingram Professor of Cancer Research, the study’s lead author, described the ideal level as being in the middle range of a U-shape because vitamin D at this level has been linked to the lowest risk of cardiovascular disease in previous observational studies.However, vitamin D was not related to cardiovascular disease in the recent VITAL trial. He and Martha Shrubsole, PhD, research professor of Medicine, Division of Epidemiology, are investigating the role that magnesium may play with cancer as part of the Personalized Prevention of Colorectal Cancer Trial.”There’s a lot of information being debated about the relationship between vitamin D and colorectal cancer risk that is based upon observational studies versus clinical trials,” Shrubsole said. “The information is mixed thus far.”Related StoriesVitamin D supplement does not prevent type 2 diabetes in adults at high risk, study findsWinter prevents the Swiss population from producing daily doses of vitamin DLow vitamin D associated with potentially harmful vaginal bacteria in pregnant black womenThey became interested in a role for magnesium because people synthesize vitamin D differently with levels of the vitamin in some individuals not rising even after being given high dosage supplements.”Magnesium deficiency shuts down the vitamin D synthesis and metabolism pathway,” Dai said.The randomized study involved 250 people considered at risk for developing colorectal cancer because of either risk factors or having a precancerous polyp removed. Doses of magnesium and placebo were customized based on baseline dietary intake.”Vitamin D insufficiency is something that has been recognized as a potential health problem on a fairly large scale in the U.S.,” Shrubsole said. “A lot of people have received recommendations from their health care providers to take vitamin D supplements to increase their levels based upon their blood tests. In addition to vitamin D, however, magnesium deficiency is an under-recognized issue. Up to 80 percent of people do not consume enough magnesium in a day to meet the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) based on those national estimates.”Shrubsole stressed that the magnesium levels in the trial were in line with RDA guidelines, and she recommended dietary changes as the best method for increasing intake. Foods with high levels of magnesium include dark leafy greens, beans, whole grains, dark chocolate, fatty fish such as salmon, nuts, and avocados. Source:http://news.vumc.org/2018/12/14/study-shows-magnesium-optimizes-vitamin-d-status/ read more

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NIH funds first artificial pancreas trial for pregnant women with type 1

first_imgReviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Jan 25 2019The National Institutes of Health has awarded a R01 grant to a multi-institutional team to develop and evaluate a pregnancy-specific Artificial Pancreas in a sequence of in-clinic and transitional environment clinical trials. The researchers hope that the first-in-the-nation studies will lead to a safe and effective at-home clinical trial with an extension phase to the end of pregnancy.The project brings together the experienced engineering team of the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and a clinical research consortium made up of specialists from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, the Mayo Clinic, and the Sansum Diabetes Research Institute.”This work will bring our previous advancements in artificial pancreas technology to the next level, and will be the first project of its kind in the United States,” said Principal Investigator Dr. Eyal Dassau, Director of the Biomedical Systems Engineering Research Group at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.”Achieving and maintaining the very narrow range blood glucose levels required for the best fetal outcomes for pregnant women with type 1 diabetes is extremely challenging, even with optimal clinical care,” said Carol J. Levy, MD, CDE, Clinical Director of the Mount Sinai Diabetes Center, who has managed the care of hundreds of pregnant women with this condition and serves as the project’s principal investigator at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. “The use of customized technology provides an important opportunity to improve patient and fetal outcomes. We are excited to be part of the team evaluating this important area of research designed to improve care and reduce patient burden.””Women with type 1 diabetes experience significant insulin reactions as they try to manage their glucose within a narrow target range throughout pregnancy. There has been no artificial pancreas trial involving pregnant women with type 1 diabetes in the U.S.,” states Yogish C. Kudva, Professor of Endocrinology at Mayo Clinic Rochester. “We are excited that we will adapting automated insulin delivery to relieve the burden on pregnant women with type 1 diabetes and their families.””This project will adapt the artificial pancreas to help pregnant women at each stage of pregnancy, progressing from a sequence of in-clinic studies to an outpatient trial,” said Dr. Jordan Pinsker, principal investigator of the project at Sansum Diabetes Research Institute (SDRI). “This project continues the legacy of the work of Dr. Lois Jovanovic, who performed her groundbreaking clinical trials at SDRI for 27 years, laying the foundation for the current standards of care in diabetes and pregnancy.”The first clinical trial in the grant, Longitudinal Observation of Insulin Requirements and Sensor Use in Pregnancy (LOIS-P), is named after Dr. Lois Jovanovic, and is now listed on clinicaltrials.gov (NCT03761615). This study is currently enrolling pregnant women with type 1 diabetes and will follow their glycemic outcomes throughout pregnancy and into the post-partum period.About the Research Consortium:Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS)Related StoriesStudy highlights need to consider patient’s weight before prescribing new cancer drugsSmall bioengineered implant promises long-lasting relief from Type 1 diabetesNew discovery may help predict recurrence of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumorsSEAS serves as the connector and integrator of Harvard’s teaching and research efforts in engineering, applied sciences, and technology. Through collaboration with researchers from all parts of Harvard, other universities, and corporate and foundation partners, we bring discovery and innovation directly to bear on improving human life and society. http://seas.harvard.edu.Icahn School of Medicine at Mount SinaiThe Type 1 Diabetes Research program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai focuses on clinical research projects specifically designed to improve the lives of patients with diabetes. There is a long history of both basic and clinical research in diabetes at Mount Sinai dating back to the discovery of the radioimmunoassay to measure serum insulin levels by Nobel Laureate Rosalyn Yalow, PHD in 1977. Researchers at Mount Sinai are running a robust outpatient artificial pancreas program in New York City. The goal for all diabetes research at Mount Sinai is to continue to develop new treatments and improve patient care until there is a cure.Mayo Clinic Rochester MNThe type 1 diabetes research program at Mayo Clinic Rochester is tightly integrated with the Diabetes Technology clinic which is a multi-disciplinary effort with dedicated Endocrinologists, Nurse Practitioners, CDEs and device technicians. The research program has conducted AP studies since 2013 and is currently conducting several AP studies working with academic engineering partners such as the Harvard School of Engineering AP program and industry partners. The Division of Endocrinology has been involved with Insulin related research since 1922 and also played a key role in early development of complex insulin therapy from 1975 to 1985.Sansum Diabetes Research InstituteMost recently, SDRI was the only US clinical site for the landmark CONCEPTT clinical trial, where 325 women who were either pregnant or planning pregnancy were randomized to continuous glucose monitoring use or fingerstick self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG) alone until delivery. Dr. Jovanovic, performed her groundbreaking work at SDRI for 27 years, from 1986-2013, laying the foundation for current standards for care in diabetes and pregnancy. Dr. Jovanovic was SDRI’s former Chief Executive Officer and Chief Scientific Officer from 1996-2013.”Dr. Jovanovic’s courageous and relentless fight to teach the world how to care for women with diabetes led to a global improvement in outcomes for both moms with diabetes and their babies,” said Dr. Kristin Castorino, also a co-investigator on the project at SDRI.”It is an honor for us at SDRI to continue Dr. Jovanovic’s legacy to improve the treatment of pregnant women with diabetes. Advancing her work in this field has always been part of SDRI’s commitment to both our community and the diabetes community at large to progress diabetes research and innovation for those impacted by type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes or gestational diabetes,” said Ellen Goodstein, SDRI’s Executive Director. Source:https://www.mountsinai.org/about/newsroom/2019/nih-funds-first-artificial-pancreas-study-in-the-united-states-for-pregnant-womenlast_img read more

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News study reanalyzes the effects of noncaloric sweeteners on gut microbiota

first_img Source:https://canal.ugr.es/noticia/there-is-not-enough-scientific-evidence-noncaloric-sweeteners-microbiota/ Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Feb 21 2019There is currently not enough evidence related to the effects of noncaloric sweeteners on appetite, short‑term intake, and risk of suffering from cancer or diabetes, as shown by a study recently published in the scientific journal ‘Advances in Nutrition’. This study has reviewed prior evidence about the effects of sweeteners on gut microbiota through experimental research and clinical trials.According to this review, “it’s necessary to carry out further research on the effects of sweeteners on the composition of human gut microbiota as well as confirming any effect that may have been proven in clinical trials on animals,” says ángel Gil, professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Granada (UGR) and President of the Iberoamerican Nutrition Foundation (FINUT, from its abbreviation in Spanish).On this matter, “every sweetener approved in the European Union is safe and its impact on macrobiota is negligible as long as its daily intake is under the ADI (Acceptable Daily Intake). Furthermore, low‑calorie sweeteners seem to have beneficial effects since they act as true prebiotics.”Worldwide increase in sugar consumption, especially sucrose or fructose and glucose syrups, has raised concern about its possible adverse effects on human health and the development of chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular diseases, and type 2 diabetes. So much so that institutions such as the World Health Organization (WHO) have recommended a reduction in the consumption of these free sugars.Thus, sweeteners may substitute sugar because they mimic its sweet taste but have a negligible impact on daily energy intake and are frequently sweeter than sucrose.Critical analysis of the evidenceThe main goal of this review has been to critically discuss the evidence supporting the effects of nonnutritive sweeteners (NNSs), both synthetic sweeteners (acesulfame K, aspartame, cyclamate, saccharin, neotame, advantame, and sucralose) and natural sweeteners (NSs; thaumatin, steviol glucosides, monellin, neohesperidin dihydrochalcone, and glycyrrhizin) and nutritive low‑calorie sweeteners (polyols or sugar alcohols) on the composition of microbiota in the human gut.Related StoriesSugary drinks linked to cancer finds studyDiet and nutrition influence microbiome in colonic mucosaHow cell-free DNA can be targeted to prevent spread of tumorsOne of the main discoveries is that “the only nonnutritive and noncaloric sweeteners that significantly alter microbiota are saccharin and sucralose, although their impact on human health is unknown and further research should be carried out in order to confirm said alteration,” professor Gil explains. “The same could be said about steviol glucosides, although only for intakes greater than the ADI.””In this sense, sweeteners based on amino acid derivatives don’t exert great changes on gut microbiota due to their low concentration and because those amino acids are absorbed by the duodenum and the ileum,” emphasizes the president of the FINUT. “With respect to polyol sweeteners (such as isomaltose, maltitol, lactitol, and xylitol), which are poorly absorbed or even not absorbed at all, they may have prebiotic actions and can reach the large bowel and increase the numbers of bifidobacteria in animals and humans.”Besides this study, another review has been recently published in the journal ‘Food and Chemical Toxicology’, carried out using onlyin vivotrials. Likewise, “that paper also came to the conclusion that there is no evidence of low‑calorie sweeteners exerting adverse effects on gut microbiota,” says Gil.Strict safety controlNoncaloric sweeteners, like the rest of alimentary additives, are subject to a strict safety control carried out by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the U S Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and other international institutions such as the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).Thus, “the use of sweeteners, which are subject to strict controls by these organizations, is safe as long as they are consumed within the Acceptable Daily Intake,” the UGR professor concludes.last_img read more

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Researchers investigate how marijuana and tobacco couse affects quit attempts by smokers

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Feb 23 2019Tobacco isn’t the only thing being smoked in the Deep South, and for many, it’s only half of their habit.Marijuana, long thought to be a gateway drug to harder substances, turns out to be popular among cigarette smokers, with rates of co-use of the two substances increasing among adults from 2003-2012. Researchers don’t yet know how much of a problem that could pose for people trying to quit tobacco.As more states move to legalize medicinal marijuana and some to decriminalize recreational use, a better understanding is needed of how co-use of marijuana affects quit attempts by smokers.To learn more, a team of addiction investigators at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) led by Erin A. McClure, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, conducted an online survey of those who had used both marijuana and tobacco within a 30-day period about their smoking habits. Their results were published online on November 27, 2018 in Addictive Behaviors.”We focused on marijuana and tobacco because of the high prevalence of their co-use,” says Saima Akbar, first author on the article. “We don’t fully understand how these substances interact and what the implications are for treatment.”The MUSC team found that more participants used marijuana and tobacco sequentially than simultaneously. For example, more participants used a tobacco cigarette as a “chaser” to marijuana than smoked joints mixing both marijuana and tobacco, known as spiffs.The study also found that the degree to which marijuana and tobacco use were interrelated differed greatly by user. However, 26 percent of users reported they had smoked most of their cigarettes around the time they were using marijuana or were high. They were more likely to have a greater tobacco dependence and to smoke more cigarettes per day.”So, if somebody’s trying to quit smoking cigarettes, but they always use marijuana and tobacco together, it’s probably going to be much, much harder for them if they are still using marijuana than for somebody who uses both, but their use is not related in any way,” says McClure.The finding also raises the question of whether smoking tobacco after marijuana use enhances its subjective effects. More than 50 percent of those surveyed reported using tobacco cigarettes as a chaser. However, another 35 percent reported not doing so. It is possible that co-users of marijuana and tobacco who feel a more intense high because of the tobacco use would be more likely to use them closer together. They could have a harder time quitting smoking than those who did not feel such an enhanced high. This possibility requires further study.Related StoriesNicotine delivery devices are harmful and do not help smokers to quitStudy: Tobacco and alcohol usage are common in British reality television showsCo-use of cannabis and tobacco associated with worse functioning, problematic behaviorsWhat is clear from the researchers’ findings is that everyone’s habit is a little different, and cessation programs will need to be personalized if they are to be effective.McClure hopes to focus on tobacco cessation as she continues her research but also identify the people who will likely struggle with quitting due to their marijuana use. She then plans to further tailor treatment to these individuals to improve the likelihood that their smoking cessation efforts will be successful.”We need to tailor a treatment strategy for each individual rather than doing this one-size-fits-all approach that doesn’t always work very well,” says McClure.For instance, in an age of medical marijuana and increasing legalization, not all users wanting to quit tobacco will want to discontinue marijuana as well. For some, with a lesser degree of interrelatedness between their use of the two substances, this may be possible. But for those with a higher degree of interrelatedness, dual cessation strategies could be needed.McClure is pursuing funds for a prospective clinical trial that would further explore how marijuana co-use affects tobacco cessation and compare quit attempts and cessation rates in co-users and tobacco-only users.”That trial would help us identify the people who are going to have more difficulty with quitting smoking cigarettes because of their marijuana use, and how we can tailor treatment for them,” says McClure. “It would also help clarify how we can tailor treatment for those not interested in quitting marijuana so that they still have the best chances of stopping cigarette smoking.”​ Source:https://web.musc.edu/about/news-center/2019/02/22/a-joint-problem-investigating-marijuana-and-tobacco-co-uselast_img read more

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New technique detects fake drugs from video taken as sample undergoes disturbance

first_img Source:https://www.ucr.edu/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 21 2019If we could tell authentic from counterfeit or adulterated drugs and foods just by looking at them, we could save money and lives every year, especially in the developing world, where the problem is worst. Unfortunately, the technologies that can detect what a sample is made of are expensive, energy-intensive, and largely unavailable in regions where they are needed most.This may change with a simple new technique developed by engineers from the University of California, Riverside that can detect fake drugs from a video taken as the sample undergoes a disturbance.If you’ve ever used online photo tools, you’ve probably seen how these tools use image analysis algorithms to categorize your photos. By distinguishing the different people in your photos, these algorithms make it easy to find all the photos of your daughter or your dad. Now, in the journal ACS Central Science, researchers report they have used these algorithms to solve a very different problem: identifying fake medicines and other potentially dangerous products.Called “chronoprinting,” the technology requires only a few relatively inexpensive pieces of equipment and free software to accurately distinguish pure from inferior food and medicines.The World Health Organization says that about 10 percent of all medicines in low- and middle-income countries are counterfeit, and food fraud is a global problem that costs consumers and industry billions of dollars per year. Fraudulent food and drugs waste money and jeopardize the health and lives of their consumers. But detecting fakes and frauds requires expensive equipment and highly trained experts.William Grover, an assistant professor of bioengineering in UC Riverside’s Marlan and Rosemary Bourns College of Engineering, and Brittney McKenzie, a doctoral student in Grover’s lab, wondered if it would be possible to distinguish authentic from adulterated drugs and food by observing how they behave when disturbed by temperature changes or other causes. Two substances with identical compositions should respond the same way to a disturbance, and if two substances appear identical but respond differently, their composition must be different, they reasoned.McKenzie designed a set of experiments to test this idea. She loaded samples of pure olive oil, one of the world’s most commonly adulterated foods, and cough syrup, which is often diluted or counterfeited in the developing world, into tiny channels on a microfluidic chip, and chilled it quickly in liquid nitrogen. A USB microscope camera filmed the samples reacting to the temperature change.Related StoriesArtificial DNA can help release active ingredients from drugs in sequenceAI-enabled device detects if targeted chemotherapy is workingComputers, games, crafting keep the aging brain sharpMcKenzie and Grover wrote software that converts the video to a bitmap image. Because the image showed how the sample changed over time, the researchers called it a “chronoprint.”The team then used image analysis algorithms to compare different chronoprints from the same substance. They found that each pure substance had a reliable chronoprint over multiple tests.Next, they repeated the experiment with samples of olive oil that had been diluted with other oils and cough syrup diluted with water. The adulterated samples produced chronoprints that were different from the pure samples. The difference was so big, so obvious, and so consistent the researchers concluded that chronoprints and image analysis algorithms can reliably detect some types of food and drug fraud.”The significant visual differences between the samples were both unexpected and exciting, and with them being consistent we knew this could be a useful way to identify a wide range of samples,” McKenzie said.Grover said their technique creates a powerful new connection between chemistry and computer science.”By basically converting a chemical sample to an image, we can take advantage of all the different image analysis algorithms that computer scientists have developed,” he said. “And as those algorithms get better, our ability to chemically identify a sample should get better, too.”The researchers used liquids in their experiments but note the method could also be used on solid materials dissolved in water, and other types of disturbance, such as heat or a centrifuge, could be used for substances that don’t react well to freezing. The technique is easy to learn, making highly trained experts unnecessary. Chronoprinting requires hobbyist-grade equipment and software downloadable for free from Grover’s lab website, putting it well within reach of government agencies and labs with limited resources.last_img read more

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Google expansion plans helping to turn NYC into tech hub

Explore further “That would never happen in San Francisco,” she said. When she lived in the city by the Bay, “everyone I knew was in tech.”Argyros said there’s “a little bit of groupthink in Silicon Valley. There’s a lot of people who have similar jobs, they read similar things. But New York is really too big to be dominated by one industry.” As New York City waits to hear whether it’s been chosen as the site for Amazon’s second headquarters, recent moves by another tech giant, Google, to expand its footprint in the city are helping to legitimize New York’s claim to be Silicon Valley East. Google is reportedly close to a reaching a $2.4 billion deal to add a landmark Meatpacking District building to its already substantial New York campus.The building, a block-long former Nabisco factory named after its ground-floor upscale food mall, Chelsea Market, sits across the street from Google’s current New York City headquarters, a massive, art deco, former shipping terminal that also occupies an entire city block.Google already leases space in Chelsea Market, which also contains offices for Major League Baseball and the local cable news channel NY1, among other tenants.If the sale goes through, it would be among the priciest real estate transactions for a single building in city history. It would also give Google a remarkable Manhattan campus to supplement its still-growing main headquarters in Mountain View, California.Representatives for Google did not respond to requests for comment about the company’s New York expansion plans.Google already occupies another former Nabisco cookie factory just west of Chelsea Market. And, across the street from that factory, it has also announced plans to lease another 320,000 square feet of space at Pier 57, an office and retail complex built on a pier over the Hudson River. This March 2, 2016, file photo shows the Google office building on Ninth Avenue in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood. Google has been quietly expanding its footprint in the city and is reportedly close to reaching a $2.4 billion deal to add the landmark Chelsea Market building in the Meatpacking District to its already substantial New York campus. It’s the latest example of a big-name tech firm expanding in New York City, which has, for years, been trying to stake a claim as Silicon Valley East. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) In this Dec. 4, 2017, file photo, people walk by the the Google office building on Ninth Avenue in New York. Google has been quietly expanding its footprint in the city and is reportedly close to reaching a $2.4 billion deal to add the landmark Chelsea Market building in the Meatpacking District to its already substantial New York campus. It’s the latest example of a big-name tech firm expanding in New York City, which has, for years, been trying to stake a claim as Silicon Valley East. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) A report by state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli found that New York City had 7,600 tech firms in 2016, an increase of 23 percent since 2010. The report found that the average salary for tech employees in the city was $147,300. Julie Samuels, executive director of TechNYC, a trade association of New York tech companies, said the presence of large companies like Google and Amazon has created “a robust ecosystem” where young engineers and others move to New York to work for the large companies and then leave after a few years to found startups.Tasso Argyros, the founder of three-year-old startup ActionIQ, agreed. “One of the best things that happened for New York was when Google opened up their office here,” he said.Argyros said people in Silicon Valley told him he was “a little bit crazy” when he moved to New York in 2013. This May 15, 2012, file photo shows the landmark Chelsea Market building in New York’s Meatpacking District. Google, which has an office building across the street on Ninth Avenue, is reportedly close to reaching a $2.4 billion deal to add the Chelsea Market building, which stretches to 10th Avenue, to its already substantial New York campus. It’s the latest example of a big-name tech firm expanding in New York City, which has, for years, been trying to stake a claim as Silicon Valley East. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File) This March 2, 2016, file photo shows the Google office building on Ninth Avenue in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood. Google has been quietly expanding its footprint in the city and is reportedly close to reaching a $2.4 billion deal to add the landmark Chelsea Market building in the Meatpacking District to its already substantial New York campus. It’s the latest example of a big-name tech firm expanding in New York City, which has, for years, been trying to stake a claim as Silicon Valley East. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) A New York Post real estate writer this week dubbed Google’s slice of Manhattan “Alphabet City,” a reference to the name of both Google’s parent company and a neighborhood on Manhattan’s east side.The pending Chelsea Market deal was first reported by the real estate publication The Real Deal.The Google expansion comes as other tech companies, including Amazon, Facebook and Spotify, are also growing in the city. In addition to considering New York among the 20 finalists for its new eastern U.S. headquarters, Amazon recently signed a deal to bring 2,000 employees to a building, formerly occupied by The Associated Press, on Manhattan’s far west side.New York has been pitching itself as an alternative to Silicon Valley for years. And while tech many never rival financial services and Wall Street as the most important private-sector employer and economic driver in New York, it has established a legitimate footprint that goes beyond a few big-name companies. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. 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. Citation: Google expansion plans helping to turn NYC into tech hub (2018, March 4) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-03-google-expansion-nyc-tech-hub.html But his data-focused marketing company seeks to attract big companies as clients and it’s helpful to be in the New York area with its high concentration of Fortune 500 companies.”It’s much easier to be close to your customers,” he said.Samuels and Argyros said another advantage to New York is that tech isn’t the only game in town.Samuels said she was pleased to learn that she and her husband are the only parents in her 3-year-old son’s preschool class who work in tech. In this May 15, 2012, file photo, visitors walk through archways carved out of the brick walls at New York’s landmark Chelsea Market building in the Meatpacking District. Google, which has an office building across the street on Ninth Avenue, is reportedly close to reaching a $2.4 billion deal to add the Chelsea Market building, which stretches to 10th Avenue, to its already substantial New York campus. It’s the latest example of a big-name tech firm expanding in New York City, which has, for years, been trying to stake a claim as Silicon Valley East. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File) Google to offer public Wi-Fi in NYC neighborhood (Update) read more

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Whats new for Amazons Prime Day Deals at Whole Foods

first_img Explore further Amazon Prime discount coming to all Whole Foods Citation: What’s new for Amazon’s Prime Day? Deals at Whole Foods (2018, July 3) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-07-amazon-prime-day-foods.html In this Feb. 8, 2018, file photo, Amazon Prime Now bags full of groceries are loaded for delivery by a part-time worker outside a Whole Foods store in Cincinnati. Amazon’s Prime Day deals are coming to the aisles of Whole Foods, as the online retailer seeks to lure more people to its Prime membership after recently hiking up the price. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File) © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.center_img 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. Amazon’s Prime Day deals are coming to the aisles of Whole Foods as the online retailer seeks to lure more people to its Prime membership after a recent price hike. This year’s sales event, which starts July 16, will be six hours longer than last year’s and will launch new products. Amazon hopes to keep Prime attractive for current and would-be subscribers after raising the annual membership fee by 20 percent to $119 and to $12.99 for the month-to-month option. Outside of Prime Day, Amazon has added special discounts for Prime members at its more than 460 Whole Foods U.S. stores and has been adding new TV shows and movies on its video streaming service.”They want Prime to be a must-have membership,” says Suzanne Tager, who heads Bain & Co.’s retail and consumer products practices.Prime Day, created by Amazon in 2015 to mark its 20th anniversary, has inspired other e-commerce companies to invent their own shopping holidays. Online furniture seller Wayfair introduced Way Day in April, becoming its biggest revenue day ever. While Prime Day brings in more revenue for Amazon, too, it also helps boost its Prime memberships. It had more sign-ups during 2017’s event than any other day in the company’s history, Amazon said at the time, without providing specific numbers.Here’s a look at what’s new for this year’s Prime Day:WHOLE FOODS IN THE MIX: Expect discounts on groceries as well as in-store events, such as cooking demonstrations, says Jamil Ghani, the global vice president of Amazon Prime. And at its more than a dozen Amazon Books stores, discounts will expand beyond devices.IT’S LONGER: After extending the daylong event to 30 hours in 2017, this year’s Prime Day will be 36 hours long, starting the afternoon of July 16 and running through July 17.NEW PRODUCT LAUNCHES: Several companies have agreed to launch new products on Prime Day, Amazon says. Among them, a Fingerlings unicorn doll whose horn lights up and a Delta kitchen faucet that can be turned on through Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant.PRIVATE LABEL PUSH: Amazon has been increasing its line of store brands, and it’ll be offering deals such as 25 percent off its Rivet furniture brand, which didn’t exist a year ago. Other deals include 30 percent off its Mama Bear diapers and baby products.MORE COUNTRIES: Amazon has been expanding its Prime membership around the world, and four new countries will be a part of Prime Day this year: Australia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Singapore. Amazon disclosed for the first time this year that it had more than 100 million paid Prime members worldwide.last_img read more

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DowDuPont names leaders for Corteva Agriscience DuPont

first_img DuPont moves ahead on job cuts ahead of Dow merger Citation: DowDuPont names leaders for Corteva Agriscience, DuPont (2018, September 17) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-09-dowdupont-leaders-corteva-agriscience-dupont.html In this Dec. 9, 2015, file photo, the company name of Dow appears above its trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. DowDuPont names James C. Collins Jr. as CEO of Corteva Agriscience, which is what the agriculture unit will be called once spun off. Marc Doyle will become CEO of DuPont, which is what the specialty products division will be named once separated. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File) In this June 12, 2007, file photo, Edward Breen, chairman and CEO of Tyco International Ltd., is interviewed at the New York Stock Exchange. DowDuPont is naming the chief executives who will lead its agriculture and specialty products businesses once they’re split off from the company. The chemical giants Dow and DuPont merged last year in a deal valued at close to $70 billion, with plans to split into three distinct companies. The company said Monday, Sept. 17, 2018, that Breen will be the executive chairman at DuPont. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File) The chemical giants Dow and DuPont merged last year in a deal valued at close to $70 billion, with plans to then split into three distinct companies.The company said Monday that James Collins, the chief operating officer at DowDuPont’s agriculture unit, will lead Corteva Agriscience. Marc Doyle, the COO for the specialty products division, will become CEO of DuPont. Both companies will be based in Wilmington, Delaware.Ed Breen, the CEO of DuPont, will become executive chairman at the company after the separation.Jim Fitterling has already been picked to lead Dow, the materials science division, based in Midland, Michigan.The three branches will become independent companies next year. The boards of the companies are anticipated to be finalized by October’s end.Shares of DowDuPont Inc. rose more than 1 percent Monday. Explore further DowDuPont has named the chief executives who will lead its agriculture and specialty products businesses once they’re split off from the company. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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How were designing musical instruments with the help of disabled musicians and

first_img Citation: How we’re designing musical instruments with the help of disabled musicians and VR (2019, January 16) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-musical-instruments-disabled-musicians-vr.html Most new digital technologies tend to be designed with an able-bodied user in mind. The first desktop computers required fine motor skills to navigate software menus using a mouse, and mobile phones need users to press buttons, swipe screens, and so on. To use such technology a person needs to be fairly dexterous. Explore further This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article. For our clarinettist we focused on the VIVE controllers, as they are more tactile than visual. They can also track physical positions in a space, which meant the clarinettist was able to position sounds in the 3-D Sonic LAB by having the VIVE controller strapped to his instrument.Inclusive thinking and designThese bespoke VR instrument designs featured in a showcase concert in November 2018, where disabled musicians performed alongside musicians from the Hard Rain Soloist Ensemble.The audience was positioned in a circle closely surrounding the musicians in order to enhance the immersive experience of the performance space.The disability equipment market worldwide is estimated to increase to more than US$8 billion by 2020, and sales of disabled equipment in the UK have increased over 93% over the last ten years. All technologies, including VR, can be inclusive if the perspective of disabled people is part of their design. Our approach reveals how new technologies can be developed, that actively engage disabled musicians in music making and demonstrate a commitment to quality of life for disabled musicians. We will continue to design instruments that can be used in VR, but we will now focus on using more affordable systems, with a view to creating a virtual reality ensemble of disabled and able-bodied musicians. How to dance to a synthetic band Virtual Reality technology opens up new experiences and possibilities in music for people with disabilities. Credit: Performance Without Barriers, Author provided The instrument was developed with able-bodied musicians in mind, so we designed it to take into account different types of mobilities. This led to one of our musicians with cerebral palsy playing a new VR instrument that was specifically designed to take into account her expressive upper body movements. It did not require her to use fine motor precision in her arms or fingers, which she does not possess. Virtual Reality technology opens up new experiences and possibilities in music for people with disabilities. Credit: Performance Without Barriers, Author provided Provided by The Conversation VR headsets are necessarily about what you see. However, we found that the tactile feedback from the hand-held controllers – through which a user accesses a menu and press commands to reach content – allowed this particular musician to play the instrument by feeling and hearing it, rather than seeing it through the headset. Not having to rely on the headset also meant she could maintain visual contact with other musicians during the performance.Another example of our collaborative VR design was working with a blind performer. Key to this musician were his virtuosic skills on the clarinet. The idea was to build on his expertise and adapt and enhance his musical performance skills using VR technologies.VR experiences are so concentrated on the visual experience that often they disregard the inherently immersive nature of sound, but it’s all around us, a proper 360° experience. Clearly, a visual headset was not relevant or helpful to this blind musician. We needed to focus on how we could use the other immersive qualities of a space for a music performance.Our team is based at the Sonic LAB in Queen’s, an immersive and fully customisable 3-D sound space – often referred to as the iMAX for the ears – we decided to adapt the VIVE technology to this existing context. In our Performance without Barriers research group, we design digital musical interfaces with disabled musicians in mind. This work engages disabled performers from the start of a new technology and looks at the specific abilities they have. In this way, technologies develop in tandem with them, taking into account their mobility, needs and creative interests.Current VR technology is designed for the able bodied, but more importantly it often allows only for passive interactions – listening to music performances, such as Elton John’s 360 concert, for example, or “riding” a rollercoaster. We were more interested in how disabled musicians can use VR technologies in an active and performative way.Working togetherOur research team consists of a diverse group, including electronic engineers, computer scientists, sonic arts researchers, immersive content designers, a soloist ensemble and a local group that helps disabled musicians perform and compose their own music independently. Together with these musicians, we teamed up with a US software developer, who was designing a VR musical instrument called the “Infinite Instrument”, running on a 360° VR headset called HTC VIVE. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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Bihar floods Have to eat rats to survive claim locals in affected

first_img Asian News International KatiharJuly 16, 2019UPDATED: July 16, 2019 20:08 IST People of the Dangi Tola village in Katihar district of Bihar are forced to eat rats due to floods. (Representative Image)Locals in Dangi Tola village of Katihar district in Bihar claimed they have no option but to eat rats as floods have wreaked havoc and destroyed houses in the region.Around 300 families have been affected by floods in the area.Speaking to ANI, Talla Murmur, a local, said, “We have to eat rats as our house has been destroyed by the flood. There are no arrangements for us. The government has given no facility to us. We are dependent on rats only to fill our stomachs. All my family members eat rats as they are easy to find in the floods.””I have come here to catch a mouse with my grandfather as we don’t have anything else to eat,” said Murmur’s grandson Vijendra.However, Block Development Officer of Kadwa constituency, Rakesh Kumar Gupta said officials are unaware of the conditions claimed by the locals.”We have no information regarding the condition of the villagers in the flood-affected areas. Even if they are eating rats, maybe it is likely that the tribal people might be eating it,” he said.Meanwhile, Congress MLA Shakeel Ahmad Khan said he has written a letter to Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, requesting him to provide assistance.Bihar is witnessing floods as the water levels of several rivers have been rising following heavy rainfall in the past few days.Many villages of Bihar’s Araria, Darbhanga and Madhubani districts are flooded due to the heavy downpour.ALSO READ | Red alert in Kerala, extremely heavy rains expected as monsoon strengthensALSO WATCH | Assam flood death toll reaches 11, Barpeta worst affected districtFor the latest World Cup news, live scores and fixtures for World Cup 2019, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for World Cup news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byKritika Kashyap Tags :Follow biharFollow floodFollow eat ratsFollow Nitish KumarFollow Block Development OfficerFollow congressFollow MLAFollow Darbhanga Bihar floods: Have to eat rats to survive, claim locals in affected villageOfficials are unaware of the conditions claimed by the locals, Block Development Officer of Kadwa constituency, Rakesh Kumar Gupta said.advertisement Nextlast_img read more

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NHL free agency 2019 Jordan Binnington Danton Heinen Jacob Trouba among 40

first_imgPittsburgh PenguinsZach Aston-ReeseCArbitration hearing scheduled for July 22 Anaheim DucksChase De LeoCSigned after filing: one year, $750,000 Boston BruinsDanton HeinenCSigned after filing: two years, $5.6 million Buffalo SabresJake McCabeDArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 4 New Jersey DevilsMirco MuellerDArbitration hearing scheduled for July 28 Buffalo SabresRemi ElieLWArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 1 St. Louis BluesJoel EdmundsonDArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 4 Arbitration hearings will begin toward the end of July. While most disputes will end up settled before hearings take place, any negotiation that reaches arbitration must have a decision from the arbitrator no more than 48 hours after the meeting. The team then has the option to accept or decline the salary that the arbitrator sets. If the salary is declined, the player can then declare himself an unrestricted free agent.Any team interested in filing for arbitration with a player has until 5 p.m ET Saturday to do so.Below is a list of all the restricted free agents to file for salary arbitration.TeamPlayerPositionStatus Nashville PredatorsRocco GrimaldiRWArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 4 Calgary FlamesSam BennettCArbitration hearing scheduled for July 27 New York RangersJacob TroubaDArbitration hearing scheduled for July 25 Calgary FlamesRyan LombergLWArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 1 Montreal CanadiensJoel ArmiaRWSigned after filing: two years, $5.2 million Los Angeles KingsAlex IafalloLWSigned after filing: two years, $4.85 million Colorado AvalancheSheldon DriesCArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 4 Colorado AvalancheJ.T. CompherRWSigned after filing: four years, $14 million Carolina HurricanesAnton ForsbergGArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 4 Colorado AvalancheRyan GravesDSigned after filing: one year, $735,000 St. Louis BluesJordan BinningtonGSigned after filing: two years, $8.8 million Florida PanthersMacKenzie WeegarDArbitration hearing scheduled for July 22 Buffalo SabresLinus UllmarkGArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 2 Calgary FlamesRinat ValievDArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 4 Vegas Golden KnightsMalcolm SubbanGSigned after filing: one year, $850,000 Washington CapitalsChristian DjoosDArbitration hearing scheduled for July 22 Philadelphia FlyersScott LaughtonCSigned after filing: two years, $4.6 million New York RangersPavel BuchnevichRWArbitration hearing scheduled for July 29 NHL FREE AGENCY 2019: Complete list of all 31 teams’ UFAs, RFAsBruins forward Danton Heinen – who faced Binnington in this year’s Stanley Cup Final, Flames center Sam Bennett and Rangers defenseman Jacob Trouba, who joined New York via trade from Winnipeg on June 17, also scheduled meetings in Toronto.The Blues and Flames, with four each, had the most players file for arbitration. St. Louis will look to settle with Binnington, forwards Zach Sanford and Oskar Sundqvist and defenseman Joel Edmundson. Calgary is looking for a settlement with goalie David Rittich, who would back up newly acquired Cam Talbot. MORE: Blue Jackets among teams that have considered offer sheet for Marner New Jersey DevilsConnor CarrickDSigned after filing: two years, $3 million Winnipeg JetsAndrew CoppCArbitration hearing scheduled for July 21 New Jersey DevilsWill ButcherDArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 2 NHL contract arbitration hearings are approaching, and 5 p.m. ET Friday was the deadline for players to file for them. Forty restricted free agents from 20 teams elected to have their contract disputes handled by a third party. Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington, who was instrumental in the team’s midseason turnaround and subsequent Stanley Cup championship, was among the top players to enter arbitration. He earned first-team all-rookie honors and was a finalist for the Calder Trophy despite playing in just 32 regular season games last season. He ended up signing a two-year, $8.8 million deal before his hearing. St. Louis BluesZach SanfordLWSigned after filing: two years, $3 million Dallas StarsJason DickinsonCSigned after filing: two years, $3 million St. Louis BluesOskar SundqvistCArbitration hearing scheduled for July 24 Carolina HurricanesBrock McGinnLWArbitration hearing scheduled for July 20 Montreal CanadiensArtturi LehkonenLWSigned after filing: two years, $4.8 million Montreal CanadiensCharles HudonLWArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 2 Tampa Bay LightningCedric PaquetteCSigned after filing: two years, $3.3 million Nashville PredatorsColton SissonsCArbitration hearing scheduled for July 26 Buffalo SabresEvan RodriguesLWArbitration hearing scheduled for July 23 Calgary FlamesDavid RittichGArbitration hearing scheduled for July 29 Washington CapitalsChandler StephensonCArbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 1 Winnipeg JetsNeal PionkDArbitration hearing scheduled for July 24last_img read more

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