Seaswarm MIT unveils robots capable of cleaning up oil spills w Video

first_img Explore further Citation: Seaswarm: MIT unveils robots capable of cleaning up oil spills (w/ Video) (2010, August 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from © 2010 More information: — “Sea Swarm,” Senseable City Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Available online:– John D. Sutter, “MIT unveils swimming, oil-cleaning robots,” (August 26, 2010). Available online: … 08/26/mit.oil.robot/– “MIT to debut oil-slick absorbing robot,” MSNBC (August 26, 2010). Available online: … _science-innovation/. 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. MIT calls its group of robots Seaswarm. Seaswarm is a floating system of robots that looks like a conveyor belt sticking out of a boxy contraption bearing a resemblance to a cooler. The belt, though, is covered by a fabric made from nanowire mesh. The mesh absorbs the oil, while repelling the ocean water. There are two things that Seaswarm can do with the oil once it is collected: Burn it: The boxy part of Seaswarm is actually a heater, and can burn off the oil right there. Save it for later: A Seaswarm robot can also bag the oil, leaving it on the surface of the water. It can then be picked up and used for something else.Each robot costs approximately $20,000, and is designed to work in a swarm with other robots. MIT’s Senseable City Lab offers this explanation of how the swarm works:Seaswarm is intended to work as a fleet, or “swarm” of vehicles, which communicate their location through GPS and WiFi in order to create an organized system for collection that can work continuously without human support. Because they are smaller than commercial skimmers attached to large fishing vessels, they are able to navigate hard to reach places like estuaries and coast lines. Seaswarm works by detecting the edge of a spill and moving inward until it has removed the oil from a single site before joining other vehicles that are still cleaning. Oil is “digested” locally so that Seaswarm does not need to make repeated trips back to shore, which would dramatically slow collection time.Even if you had a fleet of these robots, costing $20,000 apiece, it should still be possible to reduce the cost and time involved in cleaning up ocean oil spills. CNN reports that the BP oil spill would have been cleaned up in two months, with a cost of between $100 million and $200 million — an outcome much more desirable than the current reality.Seaswarm is set to be unveiled on Saturday in Venice at the Biennale, whose current theme is how nanotechnology will change our lifestyle by 2050. Clean-up tools may help protect wetlands from Gulf of Mexico oil spill The Deepwater Horizon debacle has once again illustrated the difficulties we face when it comes to mopping oil spills. However, MIT thinks that it has found an answer to the problem: Tiny robots that can assess the situation and then clean it up. Seaswarm robot.last_img read more

Model shows how scientific paradigms rise and fall

first_img The researchers, Stefan Bornholdt from the University of Bremen in Bremen, Germany, and Mogens Høgh Jensen and Kim Sneppen from the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark, have published their study called “Emergence and Decline of Scientific Paradigms” in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.“Our model addresses the interplay between a new idea and the difficulty it has in displacing old ideas in a world where alignment of interests is dominating,” Bornholdt told models of opinion formation already exist, but the new model differs from earlier models in a few important ways. Unlike previous models, the new model allows for an infinite variety of ideas, although each idea has a small probability of being initiated. Also, each idea can appear only once, and an agent (or individual) cannot return to any of the ideas that they have previously held, reflecting scientists’ ongoing hunt for new ideas.In the model, which is defined on a 2D square lattice, ideas spread in two possible ways. In the first way, an agent adopts a new idea held by its neighbors, with a probability proportional to how many agents already hold this particular idea. In the second way, an agent randomly gets a new idea that does not appear anywhere else in the system with a probability that depends on the “innovation rate.” The first way represents cooperative effects in social systems, while the second way represents innovation.The model shows how a system with one dominating scientific paradigm transitions into a system with small clusters of ideas, some of which continue to grow until one dominates, and the process repeats with new ideas. The dynamics of the rise and fall of scientific paradigms depends on the system’s innovation rate. Systems with high innovation rates tend to contain a high degree of noise, along with many small domains of ideas that are constantly generated and replaced. In contrast, systems with low innovation rates tend to have low noise and a state that remains dominant for a long time until a single event replaces it.In addition to providing a theoretical understanding of how scientific paradigms rise and fall, the model also provides insight that helps explain some observations in real life. For instance, the model shows how small systems have the potential to be more dynamic than large systems, which explains why large companies sometimes acquire small start-up firms as a source of innovation. Explore further 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. “Our model indicates that social cooperation makes it more difficult for new ideas to nucleate because of social pressure,” Bornholdt said. “Accordingly, our model finds a ‘winner take all’ dynamic, suggesting a fashion-like dynamic for the prevailing focus of contemporary science. “Even though our model is extremely simplified and does not deal with right and wrong, it explores the effect of herd mentality in the propagation of ideas,” he added. “Our model suggests that herd mentality makes a larger system less innovative than several smaller ones. In short, for innovation it’s better to listen to yourself than to others.”Overall, the model shows how new paradigms have a tendency to quickly rise to dominance, to decline slowly, and to quickly be replaced by other paradigms. When the innovation rate is high, the takeover process is chaotic, with many new ideas competing for dominance. Regardless of the idea itself, the model shows that the pattern of paradigm shifts remains fairly consistent over time.The results could have implications for science philosophy and science policy, as the model suggests that scientific diversity may need special attention. In addition, the researchers are applying the model to the study of the spread of epidemics.“We are currently studying the ideas of ‘new’ and ‘old’ in epidemics modeling,” Bornholdt said, “where the ‘never-return-policy’ of ideas in the above model is associated with immunity of infected hosts: A host that has been infected by a particular virus in the past will be immune to this virus in the future and, thus, will never acquire the same infection twice.” More information: S. Bornholdt, M. H. Jensen, and K. Sneppen. “Emergence and Decline of Scientific Paradigms.” Physical Review Letters 106, 058701 (2011). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.106.058701 ( — Scientific concepts such as climate change, nanotechnology, and chaos theory can sometimes spring up and capture the attention of both the scientific and public communities, only to be replaced by new ideas later on. Although many factors influence the emergence and decline of such scientific paradigms, a new model has captured how these ideas spread, providing a better understanding of paradigm shifts and the culture of innovation.center_img This figure shows 12 consecutive states of a system driven by the model, with one unit of time equaling one update for every agent. In the first picture, a new idea is dominating but small specks of color represent a finite innovation rate. A new state dominates between the third and fourth pictures, and in the fourth, fifth, and sixth pictures, two coherent states coexist. New individual dominant states arise in pictures nine and twelve. Image credit: S. Bornholdt, et al. ©2011 American Physical Society. Copyright 2010 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of Citation: Model shows how scientific paradigms rise and fall (2011, February 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Evolution’s revolution was the naturalist’s, though initial idea wasn’tlast_img read more

Study shows students find personal tweets from professors makes them more credible

first_img Citation: Study shows students find personal tweets from professors makes them more credible (2011, March 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further 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. Study: Seasoned profs prepare students for advanced learning In their study, 120 students were split into three groups and all were sent 22 tweets with hyperlinks that were purportedly sent by a professor; one group was sent tweets that were considered all business, or scholarly, another group received tweets that were all of a personal or social nature, while the third group received tweets that were a mix of the two. After receiving the tweets, the students were then asked to rate the degree of credibility they ascribed to the faux professor. Johnson reports that the group that received the social or personal tweets rated the professor as having the highest credibility of the three groups.Johnson, a professor of communications, chose to undertake the study, apparently, to better understand not only how students perceive their professors, but also to offer a guide for professors seeking to make their way in world where the technology around them likely changes faster than any material they may be covering in their lectures.While the report does seem to support prior research that has suggested that students respond better to instructors who are more open or personable, as Johnson maintains in the paper, there are detractors that suggest that such a study doesn’t take into account other personality factors that would occur naturally were the students in the group actually exposed to an instructor by sitting in his or her classroom. Also, the fact that the professors in the study were all presented as female, might have skewed the results. This along with the fact that older students that participated in the study tended to sway the opposite way, and in fact felt inclined at some points to suggest that professors tweeting about personal stuff was in fact unprofessional, which caused them to grade them as less credible.It’s clear that before any grand assumptions can be made regarding what professors should or shouldn’t be tweeting to their students, far more research is needed on the subject; and until then, professors would be wise to be cautious, as the line between divulging personal information to engender credibility, and inappropriate behavior, could be to closer for comfort.center_img ( — In a study that will surely shake the ivory towers of academia, authors Kirsten Johnson and undergraduate student Jamie Bartolino, both of Elizabethtown College, have published a paper in Learning, Media and Technology, disclosing their findings regarding student perceptions of professors that tweet. © 2010 More information: The effect of Twitter posts on students’ perceptions of instructor credibility; by Kirsten A. Johnson, Learning, Media and Technology, DOI:10.1080/17439884.2010.534798last_img read more

Google selfdriving cars pass 300000 mile mark

first_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. Google looking to make driverless cars legal in Nevada Explore further Google is not saying just how many of those miles have been driven on public roads versus those driven on its private track, but it’s likely a lot due to its fleet having legal access in Nevada. Last year the state issued a license to one of the vehicles.Google’s aim in building self-driving cars is to replace human drivers with a computer, because humans have proven to be so fallible. Company head Eric Schmidt has been quoted recently as saying that his goal in creating self driving cars is to bring down the number of traffic fatalities due to human error, most particularly, by those who have been drinking alcohol based beverages, noting that some thirty five thousand people are killed in such accidents each year in the United States alone.The company also says that it has given the go-ahead to some of its employees to begin riding in the vehicles solo, at least on their commute to work. Up till now, company policy has dictated that two people sit in the vehicle when the car is doing the driving. In this instance, the one person would sit in the driver’s seat and take over should the need arise.Looking towards the future, the company says it needs to work out how to get the cars to operate safely under less than optimal conditions, such as during snowy weather or when dealing with road construction. The sensors and computer system installed on the cars were designed to read and respond to normal road signs, which unfortunately aren’t always what are posted when road crews begin working, making it difficult for the systems to figure out what to do. The company also noted that they have added a Lexus RX450h hybrid to its fleet. Citation: Google self-driving cars pass 300,000 mile mark (2012, August 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from ( — Google has just released an update on its blog boasting about how its fleet of self-driving cars which the company has designed and is operating on public roads, have collectively racked up over 300,000 miles of driving operations, with nary a single accident, at least while being driven by the computer. In the same announcement the company acknowledges that its autonomous vehicles still have a long way to go before being sold as a consumer product. © 2012 Phys.orglast_img read more

Possible first sighting of an exomoon

first_img(—A team led by David Kipping of Columbia University has spotted what might be the first evidence of an exomoon. They have written a paper describing their findings and have uploaded it to the arXiv preprint server. An exomoon is a moon orbiting an exoplanet. Many moons have been found in our solar system and many planets outside of it, but to date, no one has captured evidence of a moon orbiting one of those exoplanets. This might change, as the team studying data from the Kepler Space Telescope believe they have found strong evidence for a moon orbiting a planet which is itself orbiting a star called Kepler-1625.Exoplanets are found by noting the dimming of stars that occurs as a planet passes between Earth and the star. A moon would be found in roughly the same way, the researchers note, by looking for dimming that occurs in the light reflected from a planet caused by the transit of a moon. Kipping and his team report that they recorded three such dippings as the planet made three trips around its star. They have given their find a statistical confidence of slightly above 4 sigma, noting that the dipping they observed could be chalked up to a fluke in the data—there also exists the possibility that the dimming has another cause. They note that the star system is approximately 4000 light years away, which means the light from the planet is extremely dim to begin with.The team expects their finding to be verified (or quashed) by data from the Hubble Space Telescope, which offers much better data, sometime in the near future. But while they wait, they are already developing theories about the exomoon—if it truly exists, it would have to be much larger than our moon in order to detect it, perhaps as large as Neptune. That would mean the planet it is orbiting wis also quite large, likely as large as Jupiter. If that is the case, its size suggests that it would likely have formed later than moons in our solar system. It would also make the first observed exomoon the largest moon ever observed. Citation: Possible first sighting of an exomoon (2017, July 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from © 2017 Journal information: arXiv This artist’s concept depicts a planetary system. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltechcenter_img More information: HEK VI: On the Dearth of Galilean Analogs in Kepler and the Exomoon Candidate Kepler-1625b I, arXiv:1707.08563 [astro-ph.EP] represent an outstanding challenge in modern astronomy, with the potential to provide rich insights into planet formation theory and habitability. In this work, we stack the phase-folded transits of 284 viable moon hosting Kepler planetary candidates, in order to search for satellites. These planets range from Earth-to-Jupiter sized and from ~0.1 to 1.0 AU in separation – so-called “warm” planets. Our data processing includes two-pass harmonic detrending, transit timing variations, model selection and careful data quality vetting to produce a grand light curve with a r.m.s. of 5.1 ppm. We find that the occurrence rate of Galilean-analog moon systems can be constrained to be η<0.38 to 95% confidence for the 284 KOIs considered, with a 68.3% confidence interval of η=0.16+0.13−0.10. A single-moon model of variable size and separation locates a slight preference for a population of Super-Ios, ~0.5 R_Earth moons orbiting at 5-10 planetary radii. However, we stress that the low Bayes factor of just 2 in this region means it should be treated as no more than a hint at this time. Splitting our data into various physically-motivated subsets reveals no strong signal. The dearth of Galilean-analogs around warm planets places the first strong constraint on exomoon formation models to date. Finally, we report evidence for an exomoon candidate Kepler-1625b I, which we briefly describe ahead of scheduled observations of the target with the Hubble Space Telescope. 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. Explore further Project aims to find distant examples, on astronomy's next frontierlast_img read more

Meditating through abstracts

first_imgColourist Niti Jain has exhibited her works representing meditative abstracts at Gallerie Ganesha. Her exhibition titled Meditative Hues will continue till 27 March.Colour has always dominated Jain’s colossal canvases – the largest one in the current show is about 6 feet by 6 feet. She has been been exploring colour and her work from the very beginning and her recent works are the result of that search.Niti, who studied art at Slade School of Fine Art and also trained under veteran artist Rameshwar Broota for ten years grew up in the city of Jaipur whose myriad colours never fail to charm, and it is that obsession with colour that marks her solo show of abstract paintings in oil on canvas titled Meditative Hues. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Explaining her journey and her initial contact with art, Niti said, ‘I was born in Jaipur and my mother was extremely fond of the local crafts. She incorporated them in our home in her own way, so I grew up appreciating both colour and Indian craftsmanship.A further impetus came when I learnt the traditional blue pottery at my school’s arts and crafts department.  Later, I took up the same as a hobby at Shilpi Kala Kendra. Looking back, I realize it wasn’t the pottery as much as the colour blue and how it could be played with that really fascinated me.’ Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixJust like her fascination with colour, Jain has also remained loyal to the genre of abstraction, one which is often sidelined in the blitzkrieg of new media and figurative-narrative images.However, there has been a marked evolution in her work. For her previous show, she had created abstracts whose colours were louder, strokes more vigorous and the movement of the brush more pronounced.  Meditative Hues, in contrast, is a calmer rendition with a subtlety that speaks of an inherent spirituality that comes with age and experience. ‘Perhaps this change has also come about because I have been working closely with an NGO for many years and the satisfaction that comes with it gets transferred into the peace you see on my canvases. Plus I have been reading a lot of philosophy lately.’Since Jain is a colourist, any visual stimuli works as an inspiration for her – from the colour of wet mud to peeling plaster, from the paintings of American artist Cy Twombly renowned for large-scale, freely scribbled, calligraphic works to Mark Rothko’s abstract expressionism.Not something that art lovers should miss over. Mark the dates and head over to see her works up close and make your own observations about the magic she creates.WHEN: On till 27 MarchWHERE: Gallerie Ganesha, E-557, Greater Kailash IIlast_img read more

India should aim USD 40bn gold jewellery exports by 2020 WGC

first_imgIndia, the world’s largest gold consumer, should target five-folds increase in gold jewellery exports to USD 40 billion by 2020 from the current level of USD 8 billion, according to the World Gold Council (WGC).The country should also put to use about 22,000 tonnes of gold lying idle with households and temples and reduce its dependence on imports in the next five years, it said.Besides, it should aim creation of 5 million new jobs across the gold value chain – manufacturing, retailing, assaying and recycling areas, it added. Also Read – I-T issues 17-point checklist to trace unaccounted DeMO cash‘Our vision for gold is that it should be put to work for the economy, creating jobs, developing skills, generating exports and revenues – an essential part of the financial, economic and social structure of the country,’ WGC said in its Vision 2020 for the country.In the next five years, India should target to be ‘jeweller to the world’ and gold jewellery exports from here should increase five-fold to USD 40 billion from the current level of USD 8 billion, it said in a statement. Also Read – Lanka launches ambitious tourism programme to woo Indian touristsWGC said that the country should meet 40 per cent of gold demand from its domestic stocks and the rest 60 per cent through imports and mining. That apart, India should target 75 per cent of gold sold to be standardised and hallmarked in the next five years. It should also provide higher loan to value ratio for hallmarked jewellery and ensure mandatory hallmarking for pieces above a designated selling price, WGC said.WGC also suggested the government launch ?Karigar welfare scheme? towards skill development and training of artisans and promotion of Gold tourism circuit, showcasing handcrafted Indian jewellery. ‘This vision is to outline objectives for the industry that address the savings habit underpinning gold demand, support value addition, increase employment opportunities and benefit the industry in an organised way without curbing supply or impacting the current account deficit,’ it said.last_img read more

A winters tale

first_imgAs the weather flaunts its coldness at best in the Capital, we got something for you to add to it. The Winter Saga an exhibition which is obsessed with the goal of displaying art works by renowned as well as emerging artistes from across the country is organised in the Capital. The exhibition is on till 23 January at Gurgaon.For art lovers, this is an opportunity to appreciate and buy some outstanding works of art that are a celebration of life and joy.The participant artists of the show are – Ananda Das, Anantakrishnan, Anjeneyulu Gundu, Ankit Sharma, Madhu Venugopal, Sandeep Jigzung, Sachin Kharat, Sekhar Khar, Subrata Das and  Sukanta Das.last_img

Young words

first_imgFestival of Letters 2015 continued for the third day at Rabindra Bhawan complex on March 11 in the Capital. Day three started with the second edition of the Face to Face programme in which five Award winning writers,  Arupa Kalita (Assames), Ramesh Chandra Shah (Hindi), Jayant Vishnu Narlikar (Marathi), Jaswinder (Punjabi) and RachaplemChandrasekhara Reddy (Telugu) were in conversation with eminent scholars of their language. They spoke about their life, creative writing, society and challenges ahead in their conversations with scholars. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The second programme of the day, YuvaSahiti: Young Writers’ Meet, was inaugurated by distinguished Hindi writer and scholar, Prof Giriraj Kishore.  Chitra Mudgal was the chief guest.  K Sreenivasarao, Secretary,  Vishwanath Prasad Tiwari, President and Chandrasekhar Kambar, Vice President, Sahitya Akademi also spoke. In all eighteen young poets recited their poems and three young fiction writers read out their recent stories in this day long programme. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixInaugurating the meet, Prof Giriraj Kishore, who has more than 40 titles to his credit talked about the value of youth writings for a country. He appealed to young writers not to be merely selfish and work hard and hard for higher ideals and nation, for the benefit of many is the real benefit. He recalled the role of and ideals with which the founding fathers established the Akademi 60 years ago and felt that not only the institution but writers also should play a bigger role in keeping alive the spirit. He appealed to the President of Sahitya Akademi to create and operate a TV channel given that almost all the electronic media in all the languages of India have neglected literature and it is the duty of Sahitya Akademi, being India’s premiere institution of Letters. In the evening there was a Bharatanatyam classical dance performance by eminent dancer Geeta Chandran.last_img read more

CESC helplines for Puja organisers to address power problems

first_imgKolkata: CESC will start a dedicated helpline from Friday to address the problem of the Durga organisers with utmost priority. The Puja organisers will be given necessary assistance regarding application for power connection, problem with power supply or for any other exigency. The helpline numbers will be 9831079666 and 9831083700.Addressing a press conference in the city, Avijit Ghosh, vice-president (Distribution) said the CESC is taking all necessary measures for a safe and bright Durga Puja. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life”As per our estimates, the demand will be the highest on the day of Shashti and is expected to go up to 1,860 MW and on the day of Saptami, it may reach 1,650 MW. We are ready to meet the extra demand for power during the festival,” Ghosh reiterated.According to him, the demand is highest on the day of Shashti as most of the offices remain open on that day.It may be mentioned that on June 18 this year, the CESC has been able to cater to a demand of 2131 MW. On June 19 in the year 2017, the CESC had met the demand of 2,159 MW successfully. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedHe added that the CESC is giving special emphasis on electrical safety to avoid any unfortunate incident. “We will be conducting regular surveillance at the Puja pandals to ensure that there is no hooking or attempts to procure power in illegal manner,” a senior CESC official said.CESC has asked the Puja organisers to use fire-resistant low-smoke cables within the pandals to reduce the risk of electrical fire. They have been directed to avoid old/frayed wires as well.”The joints in wirings should be avoided as far as possible. In case this is unavoidable, the joints should be carefully insulated/taped,” the official added.The electricians have been informed about the importance of all electrical connections being earthed properly.It may be mentioned that last year more than 77 percent of the applications from Puja organisers came online and all of them were processed in quick time.last_img read more

Mamata creates new record names 41 women candidates

first_imgKolkata: Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday declared the list of candidates for the Lok Sabha elections 2019 with nearly 41 percent women candidates.”This year, we are having nearly 41 percent women candidates in our list. Last time, it was 35 percent. It is a proud moment for us and is a significant stride towards women empowerment. Everybody is talking about 33 percent reservation for women and we already have 35 percent women representation in Parliament,” Banerjee said. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseThe list of candidates that has 17 women candidates include political veterans as well as Tollywood actors. Mala Roy who has been fielded from Kolkata South seat sounded confident of her victory. “South Kolkata is one of the prime seats and all eyes are fixed on it. I am indebted to our party chief Mamata Banerjee for having the faith in me and I will try my best to meet her expectations. I have been in politics for many years and have been working for the cause of the people. I will continue to do the same,” Roy maintained. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataMahua Moitra who will be contesting from Krishnanagar seat expressed her gratitude towards Banerjee and said: “I will try to reach out to every single voter in my constituency during the campaign, taking my party workers into confidence.” Moitra is an MLA from Karimpur and was the vice-president of JP Morgan before stepping into politics. Actor Mimi Chakraborty will be fighting from Jadavpur in place of Sugata Bose. “I am privileged as Didi (Mamata Banerjee) has thought that I am fit enough to contest in the elections. I am hopeful of winning as I believe that people will shower their blessings on me,” she maintained. Actor Nusrat Jahan who will contest from Basirhat said that she will try her best to live up to the trust that the TMC supremo has bestowed upon her. The surprise factor in the list came in the form of a new women candidate — Rupali Biswas from Ranaghat seat. She is the wife of Satyajit Biswas, the MLA from Krishnagunj, who was shot dead in February this year. “I will give my all-out to complete the pending development works of my husband. I will act under the instructions of the party leadership and carry out the responsibility entrusted upon me,” she added. Mausam Noor, former Congress MP, who had joined TMC in January this year will fight in Malda North seat while Beerbaha Soren will be contesting from Jhargram. Actor Moon Moon Sen who had won from Bankura seat in 2014 Lok Sabha polls will contest from Asansol. Sajda Ahmed will contest from Uluberia. Among the women candidates who have remained unchanged from 2014 Lok Sabha polls are Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar from Barasat, Arpita Ghosh from Balurghat, Pratima Mondal from Joynagar, Ratna De Nag from Hooghly, Shatabdi Roy from Birbhum, Aparupa Poddar from Arambag and a few others.last_img read more

BJP Yuva Morcha leader held with firearms

first_imgKolkata: Swarup Tarafdar, a leader of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) from Alipurduar, was arrested here on Monday for possession of firearms.However, the district BJYM leaders claimed he has been framed by the ruling party in the state as he was instrumental in strengthening the party base in the district. It was learnt that the district police on Monday raided his house and recovered firearms and cartridges from a place close to his house. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe district police came to know that the accused allegedly had firearms and raided his house acting on the specific information. The police officers from the district have started a detailed probe into the incident to ascertain from where the accused had received the firearms and some bullets. The police are also probing to find out if the firearms were to be used in the upcoming elections. The district administrative officials are also keeping tabs on the issue ahead of the Lok Sabha election. Alipurduar will go to poll in the first phase on 12 April. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateOn the other hand, the expelled Trinamool Congress MP Soumitra Khan, who joined the BJP few months ago, has been summoned by officers of Bankura Sadar police station on Monday in connection with a case in which he allegedly made false promises to provide jobs to youth. Khan was produced before the investigating officers in this connection. It may also be mentioned here that Khan is contesting the Lok Sabha election for BJP from Bishnupur constituency. A many as three complaints were lodged by three separate persons in Bankura district — two by local youths and the third by a Trinamool Congress leader in the district. It was alleged that during his tenure as the Bankura MP, Khan had received money from the youths by promising them jobs.last_img read more

EC announces May 19 as bypoll date for Darjeeling

first_imgDarjeeling: The Election Commission has announced the date of by-election for the Darjeeling Assembly Constituency. The Hill town will go to polls on May 19. The results will be declared on May 23, together with the general election results.Interestingly, the last phase of elections is also scheduled on May 19, when nine Lok Sabha constituencies will go to polls. With Darjeeling MLA Amar Singh Rai resigning and contesting in the ongoing elections from the Darjeeling parliamentary constituency, the seat of MLA has fallen vacant. Polling has taken place for the ongoing Lok Sabha elections on April 18 in Darjeeling. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe Election Commission stated on Friday that gazette notification for the Assembly elections will be published on April 22. From that day onwards, nominations will start. The last date of filing nominations will be April 29. Incidentally Rai, the MLA affiliated to GJM, had resigned from the state Legislative Assembly and had filed his nomination for the Parliamentary elections, contesting on a TMC ticket backed by GJM. After having worked as a professor for more than three decades, Rai retired as a vice-principal in 2008. Following this, he joined active politics in 2011. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateIn the very same year, he was elected as chairman of the Darjeeling Municipality. During his tenure, the Municipality was successful in getting the Rs 205 crore AMRUT project sanctioned by the state government, to solve the drinking water crisis of the Hill town. A solid waste management project worth Rs 15 crore was also passed under his chairmanship. After completing his term as chairman of the municipality in 2016, Rai had contested the Vidhan Sabha elections from Darjeeling and was elected with the highest number of votes. A source in the Election Commission said that there are five other Assembly seats in Bengal, where by-elections will take place. However, the dates have not been announced yet for the same. The by-election for Uluberia East will be held on May 6- the day of the fifth phase of Lok Sabha polls. The seat has been lying vacant after the death of Haider Aziz Safwi.last_img read more

EastWest Metro makes first successful underground trial run

first_imgKolkata: East West Metro made its first successful underground trial run on Friday from Phoolbagan station up to a little distance ahead of Sealdah station.The union inspector electrical general had recently granted permission to electrify the third rail beyond Salt Lake Stadium station, following which the KMRCL decided to start the trial run underground. “The entire trial run has been done smoothly. There have been no hiccups in the entire journey,” said a senior engineer at KMRCL. The speed was deliberately kept low, it being the first trial run. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataKolkata Metro Railway Corporation Ltd (KMRCL) is implementing the East West (E-W) Metro project from Salt Lake Sector V to Howrah Maidan covering a distance of 16.5 kilometres and the authorities have already finished trial run from Sector V to Salt Lake Stadium. “The E-W Metro is expected to make its commercial run from Sector V to the Salt Lake Stadium by July, with only the nod of the Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS) being awaited. There will be six stations in the route that include Sector V, Karunamoyee, Central Park, City Centre, Bengal Chemical and Salt Lake Stadium,” a senior official of KMRCL said. The KMRCL has already received the nod of the Railway Board for commercial services and eight rakes from the Bengaluru based PSU BEML has already been procured for passenger services. The second phase will see commercial run up to Phoolbagan, which is expected to start by October. It may be mentioned that the path of the E-W Metro will be over ground from Sector V till Subhas Sarovar station and will then go underground. In the entire stretch, around 520 metres of tunneling has been done underneath the river Hooghly.last_img read more

Govt refuses to confront villagers tilling land allotted for helipad

first_imgDarjeeling: Backed by the BJP, villagers of Milanpalli started tilling the government land that had been marked to build a helipad at Gajoldoba in Jalpaiguri district.Incidentally, villagers of the area have been protesting against the government’s decision to construct a helipad on the earmarked plot. Under the influence of the saffron party, they tried to forcefully occupy the government land and have stayed away from discussions with the district administration despite being invited for talks. Many of the villagers alleged that they have been indulging in cultivation in the Milanpalli area for the past 40 years. They further stated that despite many of the farmers having Patta (land documents), the government is using the land for a helipad. On Friday, Tourism minister Goutam Deb had visited the area. He had assured that anyone who has valid Patta will not have to part with their land. “This area has 244 acres of government land. Out of this, Patta had been given to 44 acres for agriculture. Minus the Patta land, we still have around 200 acres. For the land where we have given Patta, there is no question of requisition. Out of the land the government has, we require 3.46 acres for the project. Out of this, 2.45 acres will be used for the helipad and the remaining 1 acre will be used for constructing quarters for the employees. Despite knowing all these details, some BJP leaders from outside are constantly provoking the villagers just to create unrest and disturb the peace and tranquility,” alleged Deb. On Monday, villagers along with BJP leaders arrived at the plot along with tractors and oxen and started tilling the land. When neither the district administration nor the police resisted, they celebrated dubbing it as a victory. Nabbendu Sarkar, district secretary of the Kishan Morcha affiliated to the BJP, said: “Wherever the government will try to requisition land in North Bengal, we will put up a resistance.” On Saturday evening, the government board had been removed from the plot. Trinamool has alleged provocation by the BJP to create unrest in the region. “The government will not give into any sort of provocation. They are trying to create a Singur-like situation. Under no circumstances will we allow peace and tranquility to be disrupted. The local residents are being misled and provoked by the BJP,” stated Khageshwar Rai, MLA, Rajgunj.last_img read more

Centre targeting West Bengal govt alleges TMC leader

first_imgNew Delhi: Trinamool Congress leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay Monday alleged that the Centre was targeting the Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government and has issued ten advisories in as many days. Registering strong protest, he said such steps are hurting the democratic system and also urged Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla not to allow same questions to be asked again and again in the House. “Why the West Bengal government is being targeted?,” he asked in the Lok Sabha while stating that the Centre has issued ten advisories in ten days. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata BJP members were seen protesting against the remarks. However, Bandyopadhyay did not elaborate on the content of the advisories. DMK leader T R Baalu raised the issue of candidates in Tamil Nadu given the choice to write a postal department examination for category C and D employee recruitment only in English and Hindi. In 2013, a notification was issued that all India examinations can be written in Hindi, English and other languages. However, the government has ignored it, he said.last_img read more

Eight arrested for flesh trade

first_imgKolkata: Eight persons, including two customers, were apprehended on Tuesday night from a brothel which used to operate in disguise of a luxurious spa.Out of the three girls who were engaged in the business two are from Thailand. According to sources, on Tuesday evening the anti-human trafficking squad of Kolkata Police got a source information about a sex racket being operated under the banner of a spa identified as The Thai Retreat. Based on the information, police raided the spa located at 56 Sarat Bose Road in Ballygunge area and found two customers in compromising position with two girls. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataDuring the raid, police found two girls from Thailand who were brought as sex workers. It is alleged that a businessman who went to Thailand sometimes before proposed the Thai girls who used to work in a spa to come to Kolkata and work here. As per the contract two Thai girls came to the city in tourist visa and were allegedly engaged as sex workers. Apart from the two customers, the manager, assistant manager and a pimp was were also arrested on Tuesday night. However, police came to know that there are several spa and beauty parlours are running across the city which run sex rackets. Thai girls working as sex workers is a new trend which was completely unknown to the police. After finding out the details, police are checking with the spas in the city in order to put an end to flesh trade.last_img read more

Air pollution increases hypertension in women

first_imgExposure to higher levels of indoor air pollution in India is associated with an increased risk of hypertension among women, according to a study. Researchers studied the association in India, where burdens of air pollution and hypertension are projected to increase. The results show that women exposed to higher levels of air pollution at home have a higher hypertension prevalence. The study, published in the journal Epidemiology, studied 5,531 adults from 28 peri-urban villages near Hyderabad city. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe researchers measured systolic and diastolic blood pressure of participants and estimated their annual residential exposure to fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and black carbon. The participants also answered a survey to determine socio-economic status, lifestyle and household characteristics, including the type of cooking fuel generally used. All study participants were exposed to fine particulate matter levels above the 10 microgrammes per cubic metre limit recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO). Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveAverage exposure to PM2.5 in this study was 33 microgrammes per cubic metre. Based on the blood pressure measurements, almost half of participants (46 per cent) were identified as hypertensive, with high proportions of participants with undiagnosed and untreated hypertension. The results show that an increase of one microgramme per cubic metre in PM2.5 exposure was associated with a four per cent increase in hypertension prevalence in women, as well as a higher systolic and diastolic blood pressure – an increase of 1,4 millimetres of mercury (mmHg) and 0.87 mmHg, respectively. In men, the association observed was weaker, researchers said. “Women spend most of their time near their households in this study area – 83 per cent of their daily time as compared to 57 per cent for men, which could explain why we observe a stronger association in women than in men,” said Ariadna Curto, first author of the study. The study indicates that long-term exposure to particulate matter is associated with a higher prevalence of hypertension, regardless of the type of fuel used for cooking. “Other studies have found that women that cook with solid fuels such as biomass tend to have higher blood pressure than those using clean fuels, although our data is not powered enough to support this,” Curto said. “Our study suggests that the effects of outdoor air pollution on cardiovascular health may be independent from those of indoor air pollution,” she said. “In the light of our lack of association with black carbon, it is important to keep in mind that this is a peri-urban area, where the sources and chemical makeup of air pollution differ to urban areas mostly dominated by traffic sources,” Curto said. Cathryn Tonne, the study coordinator, said that the mechanisms by which air pollution could contribute to high blood pressure “include inflammation and oxidative stress, which may lead to changes in arterial function.” “Although further epidemiological evidence is needed to confirm our findings, ideally through longitudinal studies, these data suggest that public policies aimed at reducing air pollution will greatly benefit cardiovascular health,” said Tonne.last_img read more

Take hot bath 90 minutes before bedtime for super sleep

first_imgTaking hot bath at least 90 minutes before bedtime is your ticket to sound sleep. Just remember that the water temperature should be around 40-42 degrees Celsius, else you may not get better shuteye. Biomedical engineers at University of Texas-Austin reached this conclusion after analyzing thousands of studies linking water-based passive body heating, or bathing and showering with warm/hot water, with improved sleep quality. “When we looked through all known studies, we noticed significant disparities in terms of the approaches and findings,” said Shahab Haghayegh, lead author on the paper. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”The only way to make an accurate determination of whether sleep can, in fact, be improved was to combine all the past data and look at it through a new lens.” In collaboration with the UT Health Science Center at Houston and the University of Southern California, the researchers reviewed 5,322 studies. Meta-analytical tools were used to assess the consistency between relevant studies and showed that an optimum temperature of between 104 and 109 degrees Fahrenheit improved overall sleep quality. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveWhen scheduled one-two hours before bedtime, it can also hasten the speed of falling asleep by an average of 10 minutes. It is understood that both sleep and our body’s core temperature are regulated by a circadian clock located within the brain’s hypothalamus that drives the 24-hour patterns of many biological processes, including sleep and wakefulness. The average person’s circadian cycle is characterized by a reduction in core body temperature of about 0.5 to 1 Fahrenheit around an hour before usual sleep time — dropping to its lowest level between the middle and later span of night-time sleep. The researchers found the optimal timing of bathing for cooling down of core body temperature in order to improve sleep quality is about 90 minutes before going to bed. If baths are taken at the right biological time – 1-2 hours before bedtime – they will aid the natural circadian process and increase one’s chances of not only falling asleep quickly but also of experiencing better quality sleep.last_img read more

Steph Curry gets a free pass for everything

first_imgSteph Curry gets a free pass for everything Kyrie Irving was by Steph Curry’s side when he set the internet on fire by trolling LeBron James’ viral workout routine at Harrison Barnes’ wedding.  Even though it was a private event, both Irving and Curry were clearly aware they were being recorded, and that the video would likely go viral.Colin pointed out that Curry is never held to account for anything he does, from simulating taking a dump on the court, throwing his mouth piece, taunting more than any other NBA player, or playing poorly in a Finals loss to the Cavs.Maybe it’s because he isn’t imposing physically, or because he’s a suburban kid, but whatever the reason he’s Teflon to criticism. Meanwhile, LeBron still gets tagged for having a bad Finals in 2011 and ‘The Decision.’“Steph Curry gets a total free pass when he taunts, when he trolls, when he celebrates…it’s Brett Favre-esque.” Colin’s College Football Preseason-Postseason Top 10The kickoff to the college football season is right around the corner, and today Colin released his College Football Preseason-Postseason Top 10 rankings based on how he thinks teams will be ranked at the end of the regular season. Guests:Bill Romanowski – Former Raiders, Niners and Broncos linebacker joins the show to talk training camp fights; when he could tell a rookie can play or is a bust; and what Cam Newton needs to do to comeback from a down year.Matt Barnes – Golden State Warriors forward is in-studio to talk about Steph Curry trolling LeBron; if the NBA is targeting LeBron; and how the NBA is different now from when he first came into the league.Jack Del Rio – Raiders Head Coach joins the show from training camp to talk expectations for this year’s team; if the pending move to Las Vegas will affect his team; and how the addition of Marshawn Lynch will help the team.Peter King – Founder and Editor-in-Chief joins the show from Raiders training camp to discuss the impact of Marshawn Lynch; the biggest questions for the Cowboys; and Odell Beckham’s value.last_img read more