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Latest trial of the One Laptop Per Child running in India; Uruguay orders 100,000 machines

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Latest trial of the One Laptop Per Child running in India; Uruguay orders 100,000 machines

Thursday, November 8, 2007

India is the latest of the countries where the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) experiment has started. Children from the village of Khairat were given the opportunity to learn how to use the XO laptop. During the last year XO was distributed to children from Arahuay in Peru, Ban Samkha in Thailand, Cardal in Uruguay and Galadima in Nigeria. The OLPC team are, in their reports on the startup of the trials, delighted with how the laptop has improved access to information and ability to carry out educational activities. Thailand’s The Nation has praised the project, describing the children as “enthusiastic” and keen to attend school with their laptops.

Recent good news for the project sees Uruguay having ordered 100,000 of the machines which are to be given to children aged six to twelve. Should all go according to plan a further 300,000 machines will be purchased by 2009 to give one to every child in the country. As the first to order, Uruguay chose the OLPC XO laptop over its rival from Intel, the Classmate PC. In parallel with the delivery of the laptops network connectivity will be provided to schools involved in the project.

The remainder of this article is based on Carla G. Munroy’s Khairat Chronicle, which is available from the OLPC Wiki. Additional sources are listed at the end.

Contents

  • 1 India team
  • 2 Khairat
    • 2.1 The town school
  • 3 The workplace
  • 4 Marathi
  • 5 The teacher
  • 6 Older children, teenagers, and villagers
  • 7 The students
  • 8 Teacher session
  • 9 Parents’ meetings
  • 10 Grounding the server
  • 11 Every child at school
  • 12 Sources
  • 13 External links

New Zealand pilot selling uniform online

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New Zealand pilot selling uniform online

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

“Jeremy”, an airplane pilot in Nelson, has put his uniform on sale for NZ$1.00 at New Zealand auction site TradeMe. The pilot had lost his job when Origin Pacific Airways fired 230 staff because of financial difficulties and is now trying to “make ends meet this week,” the pilot said. The auction has already reached 31 bids and reached $101 as of 7.30 a.m. August 15.

‘Jeremy’, the pilot, said on the auction page, that he is offering “a rare piece of Kiwi aviation history,”.

“This is an authentic Origin Pacific Jetstream pilot’s uniform lovingly drycleaned for one last time before its unfortunate retirement. It’s travelled many stormy nights and many sunrises and has seen almost 50,000 Kiwis safely to their destinations from Invercargill to the Far North. It has 778,000km on it, yet it looks as crisp today as it did when it was born,” the pilot described on TradeMe.

One bidder had offered $40 if he sold the uniform immediately but that offer was turned down in order to see the auction go until Sunday.

David Collier, Origin Pacific passenger services general manager, said “The uniform was Origin Pacific’s property and the pilot should not be selling it, but I think it’s probably one of those things you’d have to grin at and move on.”

Jay, Waitakere, asked on the auction page if the uniform came with a plane. The pilot replied “No, but if you want to start an airline I know where you can find a great bunch of people.”

The auction is closing on August 20, Sunday.

Chula Vista, California becomes model for blight control laws in the US

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Chula Vista, California becomes model for blight control laws in the US

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The San Diego, California suburb of Chula Vista has responded to the recent housing crisis with an aggressive blight control ordinance that compels lenders to maintain the appearance of vacant homes. As foreclosures increase both locally and throughout the United States, the one year old ordinance has become a model for other cities overwhelmed by the problem of abandoned homes that decay into neighborhood eyesores.

Chula Vista city code enforcement manager Doug Leeper told the San Diego Union Tribune that over 300 jurisdictions have contacted his office during the past year with inquiries about the city’s tough local ordinance. Coral Springs, Florida, and California towns Stockton, Santee, Riverside County, and Murietta have all modeled recently enacted anti-blight measures after Chula Vista’s. On Wednesday, 8 October, the Escondido City Council also voted to tighten local measures making lenders more accountable for maintenance of empty homes.

Lenders will respond when it costs them less to maintain the property than to ignore local agency requirements.

Under the Chula Vista ordinance lenders become legally responsible for upkeep as soon as a notice of mortgage default gets filed on a vacant dwelling, before actual ownership of the dwelling returns to the lender. Leeper regards that as “the cutting-edge part of our ordinance”. Chula Vista also requires prompt registration of vacant homes and applies stiff fines as high as US$1000 per day for failure to maintain a property. Since foreclosed properties are subject to frequent resale between mortgage brokers, city officials enforce the fines by sending notices to every name on title documents and placing a lien on the property, which prevents further resale until outstanding fines have been paid. In the year since the ordinance went into effect the city has applied $850,000 in fines and penalties, of which it has collected $200,000 to date. The city has collected an additional $77,000 in registration fees on vacant homes.

Jolie Houston, an attorney in San Jose, believes “Lenders will respond when it costs them less to maintain the property than to ignore local agency requirements.” Traditionally, local governments have resorted to addressing blight problems on abandoned properties with public funds, mowing overgrown lawns and performing other vital functions, then seeking repayment afterward. Chula Vista has moved that responsibility to an upfront obligation upon lenders.

That kind of measure will add additional costs to banks that have been hit really hard already and ultimately the cost will be transferred down to consumers and investors.

As one of the fastest growing cities in the United States during recent years, Chula Vista saw 22.6% growth between 2000 and 2006, which brought the city’s population from 173,556 in the 2000 census to an estimated 212,756, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Chula Vista placed among the nation’s 20 fastest growing cities in 2004. A large proportion of local homes were purchased during the recent housing boom using creative financing options that purchasers did not understand were beyond their means. Average home prices in San Diego County declined by 25% in the last year, which is the steepest drop on record. Many homeowners in the region currently owe more than their homes are worth and confront rising balloon payment mortgages that they had expected to afford by refinancing new equity that either vanished or never materialized. In August 2008, Chula Vista’s eastern 91913 zip code had the highest home mortgage default rate in the county with 154 filings and 94 foreclosures, an increase of 154% over one year previously. Regionally, the county saw 1,979 foreclosures in August.

Professionals from the real estate and mortgage industries object to Chula Vista’s response to the crisis for the additional burdens it places on their struggling finances. Said San Diego real estate agent Marc Carpenter, “that kind of measure will add additional costs to banks that have been hit really hard already and ultimately the cost will be transferred down to consumers and investors.” Yet city councils in many communities have been under pressure to do something about increasing numbers of vacant properties. Concentrations of abandoned and neglected homes can attract vandals who hasten the decline of struggling neighborhoods. Jolie Houston explained that city officials “can’t fix the lending problem, but they can try to prevent neighborhoods from becoming blighted.”

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CEO Robert Klein of Safeguard, a property management firm, told the Union Tribune that his industry is having difficulty adapting to the rapidly changing local ordinances. “Every day we discover a new ordinance coming out of somewhere”, he complained. Dustin Hobbs, a spokesman from the California Association of Mortgage Bankers agreed that uneven local ordinances are likely to increase the costs of lending. Hobbs advised that local legislation is unnecessary due to California State Senate Bill 1137, which was recently approved to address blight. Yet according to Houston, the statewide measure falls short because it fails to address upkeep needs during the months between the time when foreclosure begins and when the lender takes title.

categories Uncategorized | February 22, 2018 | comments Comments (0)

Apollo Does Windows And A Whole Lot More

Apollo Does Windows and a Whole Lot More by Banks JohnstonIf you’re getting tired of the way your windows look and perform, it might be time to think about replacing them with higher performance windows that offer much more than just a good view out into the garden. Window improvements, especially with double glazing, have leaped ahead in terms of technology in the last 10 years, probably more than you realize. While it’s true that replacing your home’s windows is one of the most economical facelifts you can do to improve both exterior and interior appearance, there are even more benefits to be had from the better way they perform for you these days. The biggest changes have come from what is known as double glazing and from glass that is made with UV protection built right in. Double glazing for windows involves using more than one pane of glass in the creation of the window as a whole. Window frames are built to hold two, or even three, panes of glass instead of the traditional single pane and the new frames have a spacer that keeps the panes an equidistant width apart. This gap created by the spacer is often filled with a type of gas such as argon. The benefits of a gas-filled, double-paned window are two-fold. The gas provides a retardant to condensation build up between the panes, and it provides additional insulation over and above the double glazing itself. The additional insulation of a gas-filled double glazed window provides more than one benefit, as well – you can see that double glazed windows are multi-taskers. This insulation provides thermal assistance in that outside temperatures can no longer affect interior temperatures even right up against the glass. This thermal assistance increases energy efficiency, so you will definitely see a reduction in your power bills. The insulation also works for noise reduction, relieving you and your family of hearing every sound made outside while you are trying to enjoy dinner. Depending on the gap between panes and the gas used to fill it, you will see either optimal thermal assistance with the best average being somewhere around 12mm, or optimal sound reduction or even elimination with that best gap being around 150mm. Importantly, you will lose a percentage of thermal assistance when the gap is wider than 20mm that goes down as the gap widens. For best results that give you a measure of both benefits, you should shoot for a gap of between 12mm and 20mm. Getting the right double glazing Maidstone, Kent windows is easy when you contact Apollo Windows which is a family owned business that has been serving the area for over 20 years. The experts at Apollo have seen the massive improvements in window construction over that span of years, and they are well able to advise you on the best replacement window options for your home. They can help you choose the right solidor doors to replace those of your current conservatory or front entrance as well. When you are ready to invest in this enhancement for your residence, give Apollo a call – their initial consultation with measurements is always free for you.When you need double glazing Maidstone, Kent or solidor doors, you need the services of Apollo Trade Windows. Call or click today.Article Source: eArticlesOnline.com

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Colleges offering admission to displaced New Orleans students/OH-WY

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Colleges offering admission to displaced New Orleans students/OH-WY
See the discussion page for instructions on adding schools to this list and for an alphabetically arranged listing of schools.

Due to the damage by Hurricane Katrina and subsequent flooding, a number of colleges and universities in the New Orleans metropolitan area will not be able to hold classes for the fall 2005 semester. It is estimated that 75,000 to 100,000 students have been displaced. [1]. In response, institutions across the United States and Canada are offering late registration for displaced students so that their academic progress is not unduly delayed. Some are offering free or reduced admission to displaced students. At some universities, especially state universities, this offer is limited to residents of the area.

Contents

  • 1 Overview
  • 2 Ohio
  • 3 Oklahoma
  • 4 Oregon
  • 5 Pennsylvania
  • 6 Rhode Island
  • 7 South Carolina
  • 8 South Dakota
  • 9 Tennessee
  • 10 Texas
  • 11 Utah
  • 12 Vermont
  • 13 Virginia
  • 14 Washington
  • 15 West Virginia
  • 16 Wisconsin
  • 17 Wyoming

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6.7 magnitude quake shakes Hawaii

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6.7 magnitude quake shakes Hawaii

Sunday, October 15, 2006

A magnitude 6.7 earthquake shook the Hawaiian islands at 17:07:49 UTC (07:07:49 local time) October 15, 2006. The quake, centered approximately 6 miles southwest of Puak? on the west side of Hawai`i Island (the Big Island), was felt throughout the entire state, causing a statewide power outage.

No tsunami warning was issued as a result of the quake; however, a tsunami measuring around 0.1 meters (four inches) was recorded. There were 50 aftershocks reported after the quake, the strongest being a 5.8 tremor reported at about 17:14 UTC (7:14 a.m. local time).

There were no fatalities reported and only scattered reports of minor injuries.

Electric power was lost statewide shortly after the quake. As of about 8:00 p.m. HST, power was restored to all the neighbor islands, but Hawaiian Electric personnel still had work to go on Oahu, the island with the highest population. Power was eventually restored to most areas of Oahu by midnight.

Structural damage occurred at Kona Hospital, where ceiling tiles fell and electricity was lost, forcing an evacuation of patients to Hilo Medical Center on the other side of the island. Damage was also reported at the Honokaa Long-term Care Facility and the Royal Kona Resort.

Hawaii Governor Linda Lingle, who was in Kona at the time of the earthquake, issued an emergency declaration for the entire state of Hawaii at about 11:00 a.m. local time (2300 UTC Sunday).

Air service in Hawaii was temporarily suspended shortly after the quake as airports were forced to operate on emergency power. The power outage caused delays to incoming and outgoing flights, as TSA agents had to conduct manual searches of all bags. Airlines have canceled numerous flights scheduled to depart Honolulu International Airport Sunday evening.

Communication links are problematic. Most radio stations lost power and stopped broadcasting immediately after the quake. (Metroblogging Hawaii) Honolulu radio station KSSK, operating on emergency generators, became a central information source for Oahu residents. A landslide has blocked at least one major highway from a section of a cliff at Kealakekua Bay.

USGS Volcano Observatory equipment has not been significantly damaged. Monitoring stations report “no significant changes in the past 24 hours” of the eruption of the K?lauea volcano.

According to USGS records, this earthquake is the fourth largest Hawaiian earthquake in the last 100 years. Previous earthquakes include a magnitude 7.2 quake in 1975, a magnitude 6.9 quake in 1951, and a magnitude 6.8 quake in 1938. The last magnitude 6.7 quake was in 1983.

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Anthrocon 2007 draws thousands to Pittsburgh for furry weekend

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Anthrocon 2007 draws thousands to Pittsburgh for furry weekend

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — Local caterers get ready for big business, as almost three thousand fans converge on the David L. Lawrence Convention Center over the Independence Day weekend for the world’s largest ever furry convention, Anthrocon 2007.

Many hope to renew acquaintances, or meet new friends. Others look to buy from dealers and artists, or show off new artwork or costumes. Some attend to make money, or even learn a thing or two. But one thing unites them: They’re all there to have fun.

Contents

  • 1 Costly expansion
  • 2 Programming and entertainment
  • 3 Audience
  • 4 Art show and dealers
  • 5 Charity and volunteers
  • 6 Local impact
  • 7 Related news
  • 8 Sources

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Common Pet Injuries That Lead To Trips To A Veterinary Practice

byAlma Abell

Any owner of a veterinary practice knows how common pet injuries are. Although a lot of pets are brought to clinics to get preventative treatments, there are also those pets brought in because of injury. Dogs are usually allowed outside much more frequently than cats, so dogs are more likely to be injured than cats. It’s important for dog owners to know the types of injuries that dogs suffer and how to protect their dogs from being injured. Cat owners who have outdoor cats should pay attention for signs of these injuries too.

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There have been surveys that have listed the most common injuries that lead to people bringing their pets to a veterinary practice. Soft-tissue injuries top the list. These injuries are usually bruises or contusions. Ligament tears are also common. These can be treated with or without surgery. Bite wounds and lacerations are next on the list. Pets also seem to frequently suffer from scratches and eye injuries. Since pets can’t talk, pet owners have to examine their pets when they feel something is wrong. Paying attention to a pet’s behaviour can help a person detect an injury. When an injury is suspected, a visit to Ahnfc.com or another vet website can help a person schedule an appointment.

So how can these injuries be prevented? A sizeable number of injuries can be attributed to pets getting hit by cars. Keeping pets out of the street is key to preventing these injuries. Dogs should be kept on leashes at all times while out in public. It doesn’t matter how great a dog behaves in private. All it takes is one time for an accident to happen. That one accident could be fatal, so it’s not worth the risk. If dog owners want their pets to roam free, they should have fencing installed. Taking pets to obedience class can help prevent injuries. Pets that are better behaved are less likely to be hurt. Cats should be kept indoors.

Also, if there is more than one pet in the home and the pets fight, training is a must. Pets should not feel threatened while at home. Fortunately, experienced trainers can usually resolve cases where pets constantly fight.

For more updates, follow us on Facebook.

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Rainy weather in Hawaii enters sixth week

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Rainy weather in Hawaii enters sixth week

Friday, March 31, 2006 Heavy rains have hit the main Hawaiian Islands for nearly six weeks, contributing to flooding in many places in the islands: a deadly dam break in northern Kauai, a sewage spill in Honolulu’s Waikiki district, and record rainfall totals in many areas of the state.

A series of upper-level storm systems have formed northwest of the island of Kauai, drawing tropical moisture from the south over Hawaii and forming areas of heavy rain and thunderstorms.

The island of Kauai, on which an earthen dam broke on March 7 killing seven people, has been hardest hit. Mount Waialeale, in the center of the island, has received 90 inches of rain during the month of March and 126.69 inches since the weather pattern began on February 19. 34.31 inches of rain had fallen at Lihue airport, the most rain in a single month since records started in 1950.

Tourism officials are concerned about the long-term effect that the heavy rains may have on tourism, and they expect to launch a marketing campaign once the weather improves.

The entire state remains under a flash flood watch until at least Saturday. Weather forecasters expect a return to normal weather patterns early next week.

categories Uncategorized | February 21, 2018 | comments Comments (0)

Ingrid Newkirk, co-founder of PETA, on animal rights and the film about her life

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Ingrid Newkirk, co-founder of PETA, on animal rights and the film about her life

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Last night HBO premiered I Am An Animal: The Story of Ingrid Newkirk and PETA. Since its inception, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has made headlines and raised eyebrows. They are almost single-handedly responsible for the movement against animal testing and their efforts have raised the suffering animals experience in a broad spectrum of consumer goods production and food processing into a cause célèbre.

PETA first made headlines in the Silver Spring monkeys case, when Alex Pacheco, then a student at George Washington University, volunteered at a lab run by Edward Taub, who was testing neuroplasticity on live monkeys. Taub had cut sensory ganglia that supplied nerves to the monkeys’ fingers, hands, arms, legs; with some of the monkeys, he had severed the entire spinal column. He then tried to force the monkeys to use their limbs by exposing them to persistent electric shock, prolonged physical restraint of an intact arm or leg, and by withholding food. With footage obtained by Pacheco, Taub was convicted of six counts of animal cruelty—largely as a result of the monkeys’ reported living conditions—making them “the most famous lab animals in history,” according to psychiatrist Norman Doidge. Taub’s conviction was later overturned on appeal and the monkeys were eventually euthanized.

PETA was born.

In the subsequent decades they ran the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty against Europe’s largest animal-testing facility (footage showed staff punching beagle puppies in the face, shouting at them, and simulating sex acts while taking blood samples); against Covance, the United State’s largest importer of primates for laboratory research (evidence was found that they were dissecting monkeys at its Vienna, Virginia laboratory while the animals were still alive); against General Motors for using live animals in crash tests; against L’Oreal for testing cosmetics on animals; against the use of fur for fashion and fur farms; against Smithfield Foods for torturing Butterball turkeys; and against fast food chains, most recently against KFC through the launch of their website kentuckyfriedcruelty.com.

They have launched campaigns and engaged in stunts that are designed for media attention. In 1996, PETA activists famously threw a dead raccoon onto the table of Anna Wintour, the fur supporting editor-in-chief of Vogue, while she was dining at the Four Seasons in New York, and left bloody paw prints and the words “Fur Hag” on the steps of her home. They ran a campaign entitled Holocaust on your Plate that consisted of eight 60-square-foot panels, each juxtaposing images of the Holocaust with images of factory farming. Photographs of concentration camp inmates in wooden bunks were shown next to photographs of caged chickens, and piled bodies of Holocaust victims next to a pile of pig carcasses. In 2003 in Jerusalem, after a donkey was loaded with explosives and blown up in a terrorist attack, Newkirk sent a letter to then-PLO leader Yasser Arafat to keep animals out of the conflict. As the film shows, they also took over Jean-Paul Gaultier‘s Paris boutique and smeared blood on the windows to protest his use of fur in his clothing.

The group’s tactics have been criticized. Co-founder Pacheco, who is no longer with PETA, called them “stupid human tricks.” Some feminists criticize their campaigns featuring the Lettuce Ladies and “I’d Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur” ads as objectifying women. Of their Holocaust on a Plate campaign, Anti-Defamation League Chairman Abraham Foxman said “The effort by PETA to compare the deliberate systematic murder of millions of Jews to the issue of animal rights is abhorrent.” (Newkirk later issued an apology for any hurt it caused). Perhaps most controversial amongst politicians, the public and even other animal rights organizations is PETA’s refusal to condemn the actions of the Animal Liberation Front, which in January 2005 was named as a terrorist threat by the United States Department of Homeland Security.

David Shankbone attended the pre-release screening of I Am An Animal at HBO’s offices in New York City on November 12, and the following day he sat down with Ingrid Newkirk to discuss her perspectives on PETA, animal rights, her responses to criticism lodged against her and to discuss her on-going life’s work to raise human awareness of animal suffering. Below is her interview.

This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.

Contents

  • 1 The HBO film about her life
  • 2 PETA, animal rights groups and the Animal Liberation Front
  • 3 Newkirk on humans and other animals
  • 4 Religion and animals
  • 5 Fashion and animals
  • 6 Newkirk on the worst corporate animal abusers
  • 7 Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act
  • 8 Ingrid Newkirk on Ingrid Newkirk
  • 9 External links
  • 10 Sources

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