Mike Fiers solidifies role as most consistent Athletics starter in win over Kansas City

first_imgKANSAS CITY — There could come a point in the not so distant future where Bob Melvin and the A’s will have to decide who will throw out the first pitch in a potential wild card game.Tossing out an experimental opener, like Liam Hendriks in New York last year, doesn’t seem to be an option this time around. He’s needed for the last inning, first and foremost, but the 2019 A’s have a pitching staff delivering consistently enough that unorthodox methods are far from necessary.If the wild card …last_img

Ho-Hum, Another Human Missing Link

first_imgShoppers typically are wary of over-hyped ads, knowing that any claim sounding too good to be true probably is.  What would they think about media reports claiming a new fossil monkey is the “8th wonder of the world”?    The scientific paper in PLoS ONE1 had hardly been published before the press went ape, as if on cue, at the buzzphrase missing link.  A couple of press releases about the new lemur fossil of a female nicknamed Ida are calm and rational, like the one by Gautum Naik at the Wall Street Journal.  If what he wrote is true, that existing debates will persist in spite of the fossil, then the statements made by other reporters are clearly over the top (sampling below).    All that was found was a well-preserved fossil in Germany that is 95% lemur, alleged to be 47 million years old.  The only things it lacks from modern lemurs is a specialized tooth for grooming, a specialized claw for grooming, and a wet nose (although “We can’t say whether it had a wet nose or not,” American Paleontological Society president Philip Gingerich confessed).  Other than that, the fossil looks like a modern lemur.  To evolutionists, it bears on debates over whether the common ancestor of all monkeys, apes, and (presumably) us, was a tarsier or a lemur.  It has nothing to do with downstream questions about human evolution from chimpanzee-like apes which, according to the Darwinian story, diverged 41 million years later.  As Naik pointed out, this fossil is neither likely to convince creationists, who deny humans evolved from any lower mammal, nor the evolutionists who believe that a tarsier-like animal was the ancestor of the primates.  Even this UK Guardian article answers the question whether Ida was a missing link with a firm “yes and no.”  It says, “The paper’s scientific reviewers asked that they tone down their original claims that the fossil was on the human evolutionary line,” stating that was the job of the scientific community to sort out.    One would never know any of this from some of stories in the press.  Science Daily labeled it “extraordinary” and freely made use of the Darwinian buzzwords transitional, primitive, and ancestor.  This fossil is like a “Rosetta Stone” we are told, and “world heritage” in its significance.  It is the “first link to all humans” said one evolutionist.  David Attenborough, who is preparing a TV documentary called Link about this specimen, said, “This little creature is going to show us our connection with all the rest of the mammals.  The link they would have said until now is missing … it is no longer missing.”    One might wonder how Attenborough could have a documentary ready to air by May 25 if this is just being announced now.  Well, it was part of a two-year study that was kept top secret by an international team of scientists, who apparently had plenty of time to get the press ready for a blitz of hype.  And hype they did: National Geographic ran the bold headline, “MISSING LINK Photos: New Fossil Links Humans, Lemurs?”  Sky News seemed to run out of superlatives in its coverage.  The fossil is “described by experts as the ’eighth wonder of the world’,” Alex Watts reported; “They say its impact on the world of palaeontology will be ‘somewhat like an asteroid falling down to Earth’.”  Charles Darwin has been vindicated: “Researchers say proof of this transitional species finally confirms Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, and the then radical, outlandish ideas he came up with during his time aboard the Beagle.”  Quoting Attenborough: Darwin “would have been thrilled” to have seen this fossil:“This little creature is going to show us our connection with the rest of the mammals,” he said.“This is the one that connects us directly with them.“Now people can say ‘okay we are primates, show us the link’.“The link they would have said up to now is missing – well it’s no longer missing.”Jorn Hurum, Norwegian paleontologist who obtained the fossil, got a big callout quote: “This fossil is really a part of our history; this is part of our evolution, deep, deep back into the aeons of time, 47 million years ago.”  The fossil was admired “like a cherished Van Gogh or Picasso painting.”  Hurum was so in awe of it, “he could not sleep for two days.”  The creature lived when “the first whales, horses, bats and monkeys emerged” and is the “final piece of Darwin’s jigsaw,” Watts wrote.  He ended with the triumph of science over religion: the reaction of the Bishop of Worcester’s wife to Darwin’s theory, “famously” worrying, “Descended from the apes!  My dear, let us hope that it is not true, but if it is, let us pray that it will not become generally known.”  To which Watts added in triumph, “Now, it certainly is.”    The BBC News, surprisingly, seemed to smell a conspiracy:But some independent experts, awaiting an read more

Taking the internet to townships

first_imgWilma den HartighFind out more about using MediaClubSouthAfrica.com materialA new initiative of the City of Johannesburg is bringing internet access to disadvantaged communities in and around the city.  As part of its broadband project, multi-service digital centres, or “techno hubs”, will be set up where people can access the internet and improve their technology skills.“Getting broadband access to people is as important as the provision of running water and electricity,” said Virgil James, media liaison officer for the City of Johannesburg. The main purpose of the initiative is to bridge the digital divide that exists in communities without access to electronic and information technology.Programmes will be set up at the techno hub centres to help school children, adults and business owners develop computer, entrepreneurial and job-seeking skills. The project, which is a joint venture of the Johannesburg Economic and Community Development Departments, will focus on previously disadvantaged areas. Orange Farm, a township some 45 kilometres from the city centre, has been identified as one of the sites for a techno hub. More sites are on the cards for other Johannesburg townships.In a statement, Vumani Mangali, assistant director of information communication technology at Johannesburg’s Economic Development Department, said the techno hubs would expose schoolchildren to computer technology. As they become more confident in using the technology, they increase their chances of finding jobs.Rob Gilmour, managing director of South African internet service provider RSA Web, explained that internet facilities will make it possible for school leavers and job seekers to find employment with greater ease.“If someone is unemployed, has matric and lives in a township, their chances of finding work are diminished because they don’t have access to facilities such as recruiting companies,” Gilmour said.With internet access, job seekers can find online information on how to compile a good CV as well as get into contact with potential employers. Access to email facilities means that job seekers will no longer have to travel to town to drop off a CV. “This will be of huge value to people. The biggest challenge for unemployed and illiterate people is that they can’t communicate their skills in a format that employers want to look at,” he said.Gilmour also pointed out that in the long term the project will ensure that all people can benefit from a wide range of internet functions. “A lot of people find computers and the internet very scary and this initiative will make it more accessible,” he said.Rowen Chetty, business development manager for vertical markets at Ericsson South Africa, said the techno hub stations will be equipped with the latest technology, allowing not only access to the internet, but a wide variety of services such as video streaming for e-learning. “This project is very exciting and will drive considerable social and economic benefits to the residents of Johannesburg,” Chetty said.He agreed that such initiatives would make schoolchildren “more marketable” for future careers, as they increasingly become more internet-literate. But other community members such as parents, caregivers and business owners will also benefit.“They will serve as a place of education where mini courses in career fields and other areas of specialisation can be undertaken,” he said. In addition, all textbook material (be it for school or career purposes) will be digitalised, allowing for easy access.The Techno hubs will also be beneficial for existing and new small businesses. James explained that computer facilities will make it possible for business owners to network online, thereby reducing the cost and frequency of travelling long distances to visit other businesses and clients. Businesses will also be able to use computers to design promotional flyers and create their own websites.Justin Stanford, CEO of ESET Southern Africa, an anti-virus software company, said any small township business could instantly have a web presence by using a service such as Yola.com to create a free website. “It is well proven that access to computers and the internet is an enormous catalyst for economic development and low-cost entrepreneurship,” Stanford said.He added that it is crucial to ensure that the public terminals in all techno hubs are secure and ensure the privacy of users. To avoid various types of malware (malicious software) finding its way onto public machines, it would be vital to have effective safeguards on public terminals.Mangali explained that since most townships don’t have internet cafes, the Johannesburg municipality will also encourage young people to establish ICT businesses.To ensure that communities can make use of all the services provided by the techno hubs, trainers will be employed at every centre on a fulltime basis. James encouraged companies to participate in the initiative.“Part read more

Dreamers stun Alab Pilipinas on last-second shot

first_imgIs Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion The Dreamers leaned on the clutch shooting of guard Lee Hsueh Lin, who made two pressure-packed triples inside the last 20 seconds, including the game-winning basket with only a second left.Lee finished with seven points, three rebounds and seven assists with zero turnovers. Tevin Glass led Formosa with 24 points, nine rebounds and five steals.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsGuard Ethan Alvano put Alab, who came back from as much as 15 points down in the third quarter, ahead by one, 72-71, with 6.1 ticks to go but the Filipinos just couldn’t get a stop on the other end.Renaldo Balkman carried much of the load with 27 points, 16 rebounds and three blocks with Alab’s other Puerto Rican reinforcement PJ Ramos getting tossed in the second quarter. Korean football prospect makes history with La Liga debut LATEST STORIES LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño Ramos was furious after a non-call despite getting cut just above his left eye. He was ejected at the 8:27 mark with Alab trailing, 24-17.Caelan Tiongson also notched a double-double with 15 points and 13 rebounds while Alvano flirted with a triple-double with 11 points, eight rebounds and nine assists on top of two blocks.The loss had Alab slipping into a first-place tie with the Macau Black Bears at 6-2.The Dreamers, who lost to Alab, 86-72, in their first meeting this season in Sta. Rosa Laguna, stopped a two-game slide and improved to 8-4.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviñocenter_img Photo from ABLSan Miguel Alab Pilipinas took another heartbreaking loss this time, at the hands of the Formosa Dreamers, 73-72, in the 2019 Asean Basketball League at Changhua County Stadium in Taiwan.Formosa handed the Philippine side its second one-point defeat in three games. Alab lost to Malaysia, 72-71, on the road four days ago.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting MOST READ SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion View commentslast_img

Amazon maintains top brand reputation Apple and Google reps dip

Explore further Amazon remains the company with the best reputation, but several other tech brands including Apple and Google saw their reputations drop in the annual Harris Poll Reputation Quotient poll, out Tuesday. Citation: Amazon maintains top brand reputation, Apple and Google reps dip (2018, March 13) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-03-amazon-brand-reputation-apple-google.html 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. ©2018 USA Today Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC. Google tops Harris corporate reputation poll It’s just the latest evidence of a burgeoning backlash against some of the technology giants that impact consumers’ lives daily. Among the factors, which have spawned the hashtag #Techlash: Apple’s recent Batterygate crisis, which found many iPhone users with slowed devices, and concerns about how Google-owned YouTube and Facebook were manipulated by Russian operatives in the 2016 presidential race.As recently as 2016, Apple and Google were No. 2 and No. 3 behind Amazon in the poll. And the two tech companies were in the top ten list year, Apple was No. 5 and Google was No. 8. Facebook falls much lower on the list at No. 51, but is up from No. 66 last year.Even though some consumers have growing concerns that big tech companies have control of too much personal information, Amazon maintains an “excellent reputation,” the Harris report says.It is the third consecutive year, and the fourth out of the last five, that the Seattle-headquartered online retailer has held the top spot in the annual poll of the 100 most visible companies, out Tuesday. In 2015, Wegmans edged out Amazon for the top spot, pushing the retailing powerhouse to No. 2.This comes as Amazon mixes business expansion—more homes are welcoming its Echo speakers powered by digital voice assistant Alexa and it’s acquiring Whole Foods for $13.7 billion—with so-called moonshot projects such its initiative with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase & Co. to improve lower health care costs.Also gaining in reputation: Tesla Motors, which moved up to No. 3 from No. 9 last year. Company founder and CEO Elon Musk is the current master of moonshot projects with plans to send people to Mars—with rockets built by his other company SpaceX—and build high-speed transportation tunnels in high-traffic metro areas.The Top 10 1. Amazon 2. Wegmans 3. Tesla Motors 4. Chick-fil-A 5. The Walt Disney Co. 6. HEB Grocery 7. UPS 8. Publix Supermarkets 9. Patagonia 10. AldiFor the 19th annual poll, 25,880 people were interviewed between Dec. 11, 2017 and Jan. 12, 2018.