DENIS DONALDSON INQUEST ADJOURNED FOR 14TH TIME

first_imgAn inquest into the death of Sinn Fein spy Denis Donaldson has been adjourned for the 14th time.The late Denis DonaldsonThe inquest in Letterkenny today was told by Gardai that the investigation has now extended to another police force’s jurisdiction.Donaldson was murdered at his cottage outside Glenties in 2006. The inquest was adjourned until February next year. DENIS DONALDSON INQUEST ADJOURNED FOR 14TH TIME was last modified: July 3rd, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Denis DonaldsondonegalinquestSinn Feinlast_img read more

Three Big Things: Kevin Durant and Quinn Cook step up in Warriors’ win

first_imgWho needs ’em?Not the Warriors — at least for Saturday night.Golden State, down the two players who define their dynastic success on both sides of the court over the last five year, ran the Brooklyn Nets off of the Oracle Arena court Saturday, 116-100.After the contest, I broke down the three big things from the Warriors win with Warriors reporter Logan Murdock.Thi … CLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos or video on a mobile deviceStephen Curry?Draymond Green?last_img

Natural Selection Is Not Predictable

first_imgEvery once in awhile, biologists argue over whether evolution is predictable. The latest flap over stick insects sticks up for predictability, but flops.An international group of scientists, publishing in the journal Science, studied stick insects—those long, skinny walking insects that try to blend in with plants by mimicking twigs. In their paper, “Natural selection and the predictability of evolution in Timema stick insects,” they do their best to estimate the trajectory of these bugs. Laura Zahn, however, in a summary of the paper in the same issue of Science, has this to say:Evolution results from expected effects, such as selection driving alleles toward fixation, and stochastic effects, such as unusual environmental variation and genetic drift. To determine the potential to predict evolutionary change, Nosil et al. examined three naturally occurring morphs of stick insects (see the Perspective by Reznick and Travis). They wanted to determine which selective parameters could be used to foresee changes, despite varying environmental conditions. One morph fit a model of negative frequency-dependent selection, likely owing to predation, but changes in other morph frequencies remained unpredictable. Thus, for specific cases, we can forecast short-term changes within populations, but evolution is more difficult to predict when it involves a balance between multiple selective factors and uncertainty in environmental conditions.According to Zach Gompert at Utah State University, one of the authors, the predictability is hardly surprising: brown stick insects would be found on brown plants, and green stick insects would be found on green plants. The reason is that birds can more easily see the out-of-place morphs and eat them. This explains why out-of-place insects would be missing, but says little about the arrival of the camouflaged species. A USU press release says that the team analyzed 25 years’ worth of data to try to figure out if evolution is predictable.“With the green versus green-striped morphs, the cause of selection was simple and well understood facilitation of predictability,” Gompert says. “In contrast, with the melanistic morph, natural selection was more complex and tied to variation in weather and climate, making it harder to predict from past patterns of change.”The scientists compared their results to better known studies, including Darwin’s finches and the scarlet tiger moth, both of which were also not very predictable.“Our findings support previous discoveries and suggest evolution of morph frequencies in these stick insects is indeed a result of selection,” Gompert says. “They also suggest poor predictability of environmental variation and how it affects selection, rather than random evolutionary processes, might be the main limits on predicting evolution.”While we can use the past to predict change, he says, we’re constrained by our lack of knowledge of the future and complex ecological processes that contribute to change.c. Brett Miller. Used by permission.It’s hard to characterize any of this data support for evolution being predictable. They’re basically saying, ‘evolution is predictable except when it isn’t.’ Reznick and Travis sum up the results:Evolution is like population dynamics because evolutionary change over time can be governed by multiple factors, the relative influence of which vary over time. Nosil et al. used a series of observational data taken over 25 years on natural populations in combination with experiments to show that in one case, evolution can be predicted very well, but in another, it cannot. More generally, they show that without deep biological knowledge, we cannot understand either past or future, much less predict the future from the past.The problem is not just with stick insects. It extends to all of biology:Questionable predictability is not specific to stick insects. Nosil et al. analyzed data sets for other long-term studies of evolution in various species, including Galapagos finches and the peppered moth, and show that they also offer low temporal predictability. In these cases, the likely cause is also multiple forms of selection the strength of which varies over time.Interesting that they would present finches and peppered moths, both of which are “icons of evolution” featured in the list by Jonathan Wells, yet say they were subject to ‘multiple forms of selection.’ Why not simple ‘natural selection’ that strikes so many evolutionists as intuitively obvious? Now, we find, things are not so obvious after all. It’s complicated to predict even one thing on which natural selection might act:These results show that an iconic example of a simple trait subjected to a single agent of strong selection is actually much more complicated. Similar lessons have been taught by other seemingly simple phenomena. For example, the complex ways in which known agents of selection on the color polymorphism of Cepaea snails meant that “each population is subject to a unique explanation”. This is in stark contrast to studies of microbial, viral, and immune system selection, for which evolution seems to be highly predictable. Why this is the case, when it is not so in organisms such as stick insects and others, is a new challenge for evolutionary biologists.So the environment is unpredictable, selection is unpredictable, and mutations are clearly random. Adding three random factors together does not improve on randomness. After 158 years of Darwinian evolution, what has been accomplished to improve scientific understanding other than to say, “Stuff happens”?We like to periodically back up our claim that Darwinism reduces to the Stuff Happens Law. It explains everything; it explains nothing. This is how a stupid idea can put on invisible royal robes and masquerade as an emperor of understanding. Look at these proofs of the Stuff Happens Law we presented earlier. Don’t you feel wiser knowing them?Why the Stuff Happens Law is ScientificIt is reductive: all events can be reduced to this law.It makes predictions: Stuff will happen.It is universal: Stuff always happens.It is normative, not just descriptive: Given matter in motion, stuff must happen.It is falsifiable: If nothing happens, the law has been disproved.It is practical: If something happens, you know you will find stuff around.Corollaries can be derived from it: e.g., Stuff happens at the worst possible time, Bad stuff happens to good people, Murphy’s Law, etc.Impressed?  Darwin’s laws of nature are about as helpful to the understanding of nature as the Stuff Happens Law. Your science might be healthier with a bit of Cole’s Law (i.e., thinly sliced cabbage). (Visited 606 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Kenyans tops in London Marathon

first_imgRay Maota Emmanuel Mutai won the men’s race in two hours, four minutes and 40 seconds – the fifth fastest time in the marathon’s 30-year history. (Image: WTOP) Mary Keitany, who shaved 10 minutes off her personal best time for a marathon of this nature, recorded the fourth fastest time in the women’s division since the race’s inception. (Image: Athletics Africa) MEDIA CONTACTS • Virgin London Marathon  +44 020 7902 0200 RELATED ARTICLES • New drive to spark local sports frenzy • Legacy of 2010 shines in Kenya • Quality inputs for Kenya’s farmers • South Africa’s toughest endurance challengesKenyans dominated the 2011 Virgin London Marathon on 17 April, winning both the men’s and women’s races.Emmanuel Mutai won the men’s race in two hours, four minutes and 40 seconds – the fifth fastest time in the marathon’s 30-year history.The women’s division was won by Mary Keitany, who broke a record that had been in place since 2005 with a time of two hours, 19 minutes and 19 seconds.‘My dreams have come true’The marathon – which is run past many of the city’s landmarks including the London Eye, Houses of Parliament and Tower of London, and ends in front of Buckingham Palace – boasted a field of nearly 35 000 runners in 2011.The event is known for attracting an array of participants in elaborate costumes – many of whom dress up and run for charity. This year was no different and one running couple even donned masks resembling the soon-to-be-wed Prince William and Kate Middleton.The 2011 marathon saw 33 new Guinness World Records being set, including the fastest jester to complete a marathon, the fastest male and female marathoners in superhero costumes and the fastest Roman legionary.Mutai would have shattered the world record set by Ethiopian marathon legend Haile Gebrselassie had he come in 41 seconds earlier. Although Mutai didn’t manage this, his winning margin of a minute and five seconds was the largest recorded since 1986.Mutai, who was delighted to win his first major race, said: “My dreams have come true because I had it in my mind that one day I would win one of the five major marathons.“I was second here and in New York last year, but today has finally come for me. My aim was just to win. I was not focusing on the time, but I tried my best to push it when I saw we were inside world-record pace at one stage.”Keitany, who shaved 10 minutes off her personal best time for a marathon of this nature, recorded the fourth fastest time in the women’s division since the race’s inception.“I think I surprised myself because I was running with the champion from last year and I was a bit scared, but then I started to believe in myself that I could do it and I feel very happy,” she said.Running around LondonThe first London Marathon was run on 29 March 1981 after John Disley and Chris Brasher secured sponsorship of US$122,000 (R830 000) a year for three years from the man’s grooming conglomerate, Gillette.Between 1981 and 2009, 746 635 runners had completed the London Marathon.In 1993 the Golden Bond scheme was introduced to enable charities to buy guaranteed entries to the race for $488 (R3 324) each, which they give to runners unable to secure their own places. These runners then pledge a four-figure sum to the charities in return.In 2007 $75-million (R511-million) was raised for good causes by runners. That year saw the London Marathon become a Guinness World Record breaker as the largest single annual fundraising event in the world. That record was broken again in 2008 when $76-million (R518-million) was raised.An estimated $813-million (R5.5-billion) has been raised through the race since 1981 for charitable causes.Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group was signed up as the race sponsor in 2010 and the term will end in 2014.last_img read more

Who’s Watching You!!! GC15KNG GEOCACHE OF THE WEEK – January 30, 2012

first_img SharePrint RelatedVoss Margarine – Geocache of the WeekFebruary 27, 2019In “Community”Maastricht:Wandelen op en langs de stadsmuren – Geocache of the WeekApril 3, 2019In “Community”Line of Sight — In the Distance (GC4JZTK) — Geocache of the WeekMarch 19, 2015In “Geocache of the Week” Binocular’s used in finding “Who’s Watching You!!!”Binoculars and a half gallon of water. Those are the unusual tools  you might need  to successfully unravel a famous New Jersey, USA Multi-Cache.Who’s Watching You!!! (GC15KNG) has racked up more than 40 Favorite Points. TheSurfcaster created three stage Multi-Cache in 2007.  The difficulty 2, terrain 1.5 geocache takes adventurers through the woodlands of “The Garden State.”The cache tells geocachers what they should bring along on their journey, “You will need to use BINOCULARS for the first stage if the lighting conditions are not right” and “If you are doing this cache in the middle of winter when everything is frozen solid you need to bring a half gallon of water.” “Who’s Watching You!!!”Adventurers travel only a short distance to find this cache, but each stage of the geocache leaves a lasting impression. One cacher who earned a smiley on “Who’s Watching You!!!” writes, “Stage 1 – amazed at it’s location. Stage 2 – like the craftsmanship. Stage 3 – was like a science project.”Another geocacher saved the geocache to celebrate a milestone. They write, “WOW! Wanted to make this cache my 2000th find because of its popularity with favorite points and am glad I did. A lot of work was put into this multi, and I appreciate the creativity and ingenuity used to create these caches.”Near the cache location of “Who’s Watching You!!!”Sorry – there are no spoilers about the specifics of this geocache in this blog post. What unique tools have you used to help complete a geocache?Continue to explore of some of the most engaging geocaches around the globe. Explore all the Geocaches of the Week on the Latitude 47 blog or view the Bookmark List on Geocaching.com. If you’ d like to nominate a Geocache of the Week, send an email with your name, comments, the name of the geocache, and the GC code to pr@groundspeak.com. Share with your Friends:Morelast_img read more

Facebook’s Copycat Strategy: All The Innovation It Needs

first_imgGuide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Matt Asay Tags:#Facebook#innovation#Instagram#Microsoft#twitter#video Two-thirds of its 1.1 billion monthly active users log into Facebook through their mobile phones. Facebook doesn’t need to dazzle these users with Home or some other contraption. Facebook simply needs to maintain its comfortable experience for existing users while adding in functionality that takes off elsewhere, like Instagram Video (copying Twitter) or check-ins (copying Foursquare).While some numbers have suggested a teenage exodus off the platform, the truth is more complex.Facebook’s Willingness To Bet (And Buy) BigAnd when a rival service shows enough growth with teens or other desirable demographics to warrant it, Facebook can simply acquire the product. While the company already dominated photo sharing, Facebook acquired Instagram to give its mobile photo business a jumpstart. Facebook can afford to buy out rivals, given the mountainous cash hoard it raised in its IPO.This is why I’m sanguine on Facebook’s future. The social networking giant is in the perfect position to survey the market for rising innovations and blend them into the existing Facebook experience in ways that complement the comfortable Facebook experience. Usually this can be done through home-grown development, but when an acquisition is needed, the company has shown the willingness to spend big on a category leader.This is in stark contrast to another market leader that has generally embraced the embrace-and-extend approach to innovation: Microsoft. As The Wall Street Journal‘s Rolfe Winkler puts it, “Microsoft keeps hitching its fortunes to lame horses,” turning to Nokia, Yahoo!, Dell, Barnes and Noble and other great companies whose market presence has faded. So long as Facebook is willing to clone or acquire the best rival innovations, it should be able to continue growing its revenue even as it improves its utility to new and existing users. Facebook increasingly plays copycat to Twitter and other Silicon Valley upstarts when it comes to innovation, but with over 1.1 billion active users, Facebook can afford to be a fast follower. Indeed, the right strategy may well be to simply copy or acquire others’ innovations as they become popular. After all, as much as people may wring their hands about Instagram or Snapchat beating Facebook to this or that feature, the hardest feature of all to copy is a massive, built-in audience. A Quick History Of Facebook Imitations (Er, “Innovations”)A quick review of Facebook’s most recent product updates suggests that the company is having trouble coming up with novel features. Hashtags are the latest feature to arrive, a clear rip-off of Twitter, and just before that Instagram Video, which looked suspiciously like Twitter’s Vine. Or how about its check-in feature, which mimicked Foursquare? While some might pillory Facebook for lacking creativity, the fact is that being a fast (or even slow) follower is arguably the right strategy for a company with such a deep installed base. When was the last time you or your friends actually celebrated Facebook changing its interface or otherwise altering your comfortable Facebook experience?And did anyone really want Facebook Home? This counts as real innovation and it also counts as a serious innovation misstep.It turns out that copying others’ functionality is not only safe, it’s smart. Just ask Apple. Apple hasn’t innovated the portable music player, smartphone or tablet. Yet it still dominates either market share or profit share in all of these markets by improving upon others’ innovations. Predicting the future is really hard and frankly doesn’t usually lead to big paydays. But making that future safe and easy for a large audience? That pays big dividends.Facebook’s Numbers Suggest It’s Doing Things RightWhile Facebook has a lot of work to do on its monetization strategy, and its advertising still leaves something to be desired, as Hunter Walk points out, the company continues to print money. Critics howled that the company didn’t “get” mobile, but each quarter the percentage of Facebook’s company’s revenue derived from mobile keeps growing, most recently jumping to 30% in its Q1 2013, up from 23% a year ago. Related Posts Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Audit The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videoslast_img read more

5 Ways to Use Stories to Increase Donations

first_imgThere are infinite ways to tell your nonprofit stories, but do you know which ones will lead to more donations? Check out these great tips shared in our free webinar, How to Use Content to Boost Your Donations. 2. Share stories on your blog.Blogging is a great way to grow your online presence, establish credibility, and increase your reach. You can highlight specific constituents, volunteers, staff, and board members—you can even let them write their own stories. Tying your blog to your website makes these testimonials, updates on upcoming events, and ongoing campaigns easy for visitors to access without receiving direct communication from you. 4. Turn donors into advocates with nurturing emails.Nurturing emails are a great way to consistently share your stories. Send welcome emails after a friend signs up for your blog, or deliver a series of emails to build anticipation once a guest signs up for an event. The goal is to familiarize people with your organization, explain how you’re being successful, describe what you want to accomplish, and share stories of successful fundraisers. Make what you’re doing human and relatable to inspire people to fundraise and advocate for your cause. 5. Revamp your annual report.After your annual report is published, do you know how many people are actually reading it? Chances are it’s not many! Because your annual report contains the proof, data, and impact of your mission, you should do everything possible to make people want to read it. Make it beautiful (forget endless columns of small black text), shareable (does it include great pictures and Twitter icons?), visual (do you have infographics and appealing charts to make your content easy to digest?), and accessible (is it easy to understand, and does it fit on your website?). Making your annual report more creative will encourage people to read it, share it, and donate in support of it!Want to learn more about how telling your stories can lead to better donor involvement and more money? Download the on-demand webinar presentation, How to Use Content to Boost Your Donations. 3. Tie donor actions to numbers.This might not sound like a story, but trust us, it is! Close the loop for your supporters by letting them know exactly what their donation will give someone else. Will it mean two pairs of shoes, a warm meal, an immunization? Donors love to know where their money is going and what impact they’re making on someone’s life. Including a visual makes the story of a donation more compelling to a potential donor. Many organizations are hesitant to make a video; it can be expensive, time consuming, and technical. But it can also be easy and inspiring. Connect with your viewers by telling them an easy-to-follow short story that centers on just one or two people. Focus on the quality of the story and engaging your viewer, not on making a super-high-quality video. Your supporters know you’re not Hollywood, so your video doesn’t need to be as technically savvy. 1. Tell personal stories through video. last_img read more

Maternal Health Commodities: Looking Beyond Medicines

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on August 16, 2012October 12, 2016Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)This post is part of a blog series on maternal health commodities. To view the entire series, click here.Written by: the Fistula Care team at EngenderHealth.The UN Commission on Life-Saving Commodities is working to improve access to essential but overlooked maternal health medicines, such as oxytocin, misoprostol, and magnesium sulfate. This is welcomed, wonderful news: Proper access to these drugs will save the lives of many women every year. As we consider how to improve mothers’ health worldwide, however, we must recognize that life-saving medicines are only a part of the story. Facilities require equipment and supplies to save lives, too.On the USAID-funded Fistula Care project, we at EngenderHealth have given some thought to the essential obstetric equipment that hospitals should have on hand. As it turns out, very little on our equipment list is exclusively for genital fistula repair surgery. The same retractors, specula, scissors, scalpels, and forceps can largely be used not only to repair fistula, but also to enable health providers to carry out cesarean sections, laparotomy and other surgeries. That is, the same tools that enable trained surgeons to repair fistula can also allow hospital staff to provide the comprehensive emergency obstetric care that will prevent fistula – not to mention maternal deaths.Equipment requirements go beyond surgical kits: Autoclaves, operating tables, and appropriate lighting can improve care hospital-wide. All equipment – both large and small – must be appropriately maintained and, when necessary, repaired. Ensuring local capacity for maintenance and repair is therefore essential.A functioning surgical service also needs supplies – items like gloves, disinfectant, gauze, and sutures that will naturally be used up and need replenishing. These items share the supply chain needs of the essential medicines, and it follows logically that improving access to lifesaving drugs could efficiently translate into systems able to maintain and appropriately distribute necessary consumables, too.Costing of consumables for maternal health is acknowledged as an issue that has not received sufficient attention. Our recent cost study assessed the average consumption of supplies related specifically to fistula surgery. Just like our equipment list, most consumables for fistula repair overlap with those required for emergency obstetric care.Can the UN commission include equipment and consumables among its concerns? Perhaps not, since its specific focus is central to its success. Nevertheless, all players in the maternal health field would do well to keep in mind that lifesaving medicines are just part of the story. Properly maintained, functional equipment and appropriate consumables also save lives.Learn more about the Fistula Care project here.Share this:last_img read more

Discussions at GMHC2013 About Home Births and Traditional Birth Attendants

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on January 28, 2013March 21, 2017By: Girija Sankar, Director of Haiti Programs, Senior Program Manager, Global Health ActionClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Over 2000 abstracts were submitted to the Global Maternal Health Conference 2013. Eventually, around 800 delegates from all around the world presented papers and posters on maternal health topics under the theme of “Quality of Care”.While all the sessions and plenaries were thought-provoking, some of the sessions that I found especially interesting dealt with home birth attendance and the role of traditional birth attendants (TBAs).Speakers from Nigeria, Pakistan, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia and Uganda all highlighted the role that TBAs continue to play in home deliveries. Just because a country’s Ministry of Health dictates that women should deliver at facilities does not mean that women will indeed deliver at facilities. The reality in many of these countries, quite like Haiti, where I work, is that as long as there are significant barriers to safe, affordable and accessible obstetric care, women will continue to turn to other older women whom they know and trust: traditional birth attendants.Presenters from Bangladesh and Nigeria presented findings from promoting the use of clean delivery kits (CDKs) and the consequent impact on improving safe deliveries. The CDKs were promoted through social marketing to families who would then either take the kit to the facility or give it to the TBA for use in home births.We heard from a practitioner in Ethiopia whose organization works with pastoralists in the remote Afar region to improve health outcomes by training TBAs and encouraging women to visit the maternity waiting rooms built close to the referral centers. The group had identified 6 harmful practices that TBAs practiced, often leading to maternal and neonatal deaths. When trained on safe practices, the TBAs realized that what they had been doing in the past may have led to deaths.In Bangladesh, women, after child birth, are often allowed to bleed for a long time owing to the traditional belief that any blood that leaves the woman’s body after child birth is bad blood. The TBAs have since been trained on why that is dangerous for women.Discussions on task-shifting in HRH must acknowledge the role that TBAs continue to play in communities where women do not seek facility-based care for various reasons. If working with the community and women is important, then so is understanding and respecting decisions that women make in why and how they seek services from traditional birth attendants.Prof. Mahmoud Fathalla perhaps said it best when he said “more women have died from child birth than men have died fighting each other in battles.”Learn more about the conference and access the conference presentations at www.gmhc2013.com. Join the conference conversation on Twitter: #GMHC2013Share this:last_img read more

Happy Valentine’s Day: Donor Love Infographic

first_imgLooking for a new way to show your donors some love this Valentine’s Day? Look no further! Let our Donor Love infographic show you the way. We’re here to help you with all your nonprofit fundraising and marketing needs, including:Campaigns & AppealsThank YousResults & ReportsDonor RelationsCommunicationsCheck out our donor love infographic today. Plus, hover over each image for a special surprise!Donor Love InfographicRead more on The Nonprofit Bloglast_img