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Small Publishers and Marketing Services

first_imgFor some publishers, acquiring their way into marketing services (in March, Penton bought online marketing firm EyeTraffic Media) may be the best option. Referencing the development of Meredith Integrated Marketing, Tom Stein, president and founder of b-to-b agency Stein Rogan + Partners, said it was based on six acquisitions and that former Meredith National Media group president Jack Griffin told him, “If we decided to do this in-house, we’d still be just talking about it.” However, most smaller publishers don’t have the war chest for six marketing acquisitions (or spending $350 million on a digital agency the way Hearst did for iCrossing). For them, entering marketing services requires a mix of in-house development and strategic partnering. Last week, Northstar Travel Media announced a marketing solutions division based around two internal staffers (a VP of marketing solutions in former TravelAge West publisher Michelle Rosenberg and a dedicated project manager), and a strategic tech partner in Decision Counsel to execute programs. American Business Media’s annual meeting this year took a single theme approach, focusing on the opportunity for b-to-b publishers to offer marketing services. While the core of marketing services is based on many things publishers already offer (content, data, lead gen), it’s also a different business with longer sales cycles, potentially lower margins, and a different sales and editorial mentality. It’s the latest example of publishers “chasing new money in a hurry,” according to Mitch Rouda, president of e-media at Farm Journal Media. Stage 1: Status quo—no projects. Customers should be addressed with best practices and industry trends. Stage 2: Discovery—the customer knows they need a project but isn’t sure what to do. Here, white papers and Webinars are applicable. Stage 3: Vendor selection. Here Summit presents customer testimonials, assessment tools in which prospects can enter data and increasing use of video. “For our market, they want to see the machines in action, says Newcorn. Stage 4: Short list. Vendor comparison charts. “Here, they need something downloadable,” says Newcorn. “A chart indicates they’re pretty far down the path. A boardroom PowerPoint is something junior execs can show to more senior, maybe less tech savvy execs.” The Summit proposal package includes a kick-off meeting with the content creators, written analysis and recommendations and a 12-month road map. “Now that we have the infrastructure to produce custom packages, now we have to look at how we sell it,” says Newcorn. Summit Media also debuted a new dedicated custom media group (“custom” is increasingly becoming a dirty word that marketing can’t relate too—hence the rise of “marketing solutions.”) with seven full-time people and multiple freelancers. “What’s interesting is [clients] want our expertise as content producers, not our audience,” said Dave Newcorn, vice president of digital and custom media. center_img Many of the services now falling under the umbrella of “marketing solutions” have previously been offered as value-added. “We need to change the nature of free with things like copywriting, consulting, white papers and surveys,” says Newcorn. “We charged one client $7,500 to put together a survey and send it. In any other kind of work, that’s consulting.” Summit came up with a price calculator that deducts hard costs but also incentivizes salespeople to sell high. Part of getting the new custom group off the ground was a “lunch & learn” campaign in which Newcorn and his group visited 108 customers in 15 cities, explaining the concept of lead nurturing. The publisher also did research identifying four stages of the buying process and what solutions to offer. They include:last_img read more

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Navy Utility Reach Deal to Build Solar Array at Georgia Marine Corps

first_img Dan Cohen AUTHOR The Navy signed a real estate outgrant with Georgia Power to develop a 31-megawatt (alternating current) solar generation facility on 150 acres at Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, officials announced this week.The $75 million project, which will consist of ground-mounted solar photovoltaic panels, will deliver energy to the utility’s grid. Groundbreaking is expected this spring; the company plans to bring the facility online in less than a year, according to a news release.The array underscores the southwestern Georgia installation’s commitment to energy security, said Marine Corps Col. James Carroll III, commanding officer of MCLB Albany. The installation currently is slated to become a net zero energy installation with the construction of a biomass plant expected to start this summer.“Through our recent adoption of cutting-edge technologies, to include landfill gas-to-electric generators and ground source heat pumps, and our current effort to construct a biomass steam-fed electric generator, we are on track to achieve ‘net zero’ status well ahead of the secretary of the Navy mandate,” Carroll said. “This project with Georgia Power will add to the base’s energy security and diversify the area’s power supply, making the grid and all who rely on it more resilient,” he said.The project represents Georgia Power’s second at a Navy base; the utility broke ground last year on a 30-megawatt solar plant at Submarine Base Kings Bay.last_img read more

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Backstreet Boys Talk GRAMMY Museum Experience Millennium Legacy Touring

first_img Twitter NETWORK ERRORCannot Contact ServerRELOAD YOUR SCREEN OR TRY SELECTING A DIFFERENT VIDEO Apr 18, 2019 – 2:26 pm Backstreet Boys On New Exhibit, ‘Millennium,’ More https://twitter.com/GRAMMYMuseum/status/1116445887855767559 Facebook As they unveil the interactive ‘Backstreet Boys: The Experience’ exhibit, we go behind the scenes with the GRAMMY-nominated boy band to look back on their 26 years together Ana YglesiasGRAMMYs Apr 18, 2019 – 3:10 pm On April 8, the Backstreet Boys visited the GRAMMY Museum for a very special evening; the preview night of the newest exhibit there, Backstreet Boys: The Experience. AJ McLean, Howie Dorough, Nick Carter, Kevin Richardson and Brian Littrell all played a part in making the exhibit happen, sorting through old wardrobe trunks to choose which iconic ’90s and ’00s looks to put on display and sifting through the countless fan photos and homemade memorabilia they’ve been gifted over their 26-year career. Email We went behind the scenes with the GRAMMY-nominated group right after they explored the newly set up exhibit for the first time, as they reflected on who BSB is today, their legacy, having fun in Las Vegas and their excitement for the DNA World Tour. Or, as McLean put it, their “biggest tour in 18 years,” in support of 2019’s DNA.”I think [The Experience] is gonna surprise a lot of people, bring back a lot of memories…if you’re a fan, this plays homage to you,” Carter told us about the new exhibit. “[There’s] a lot of things you can interact with, but just really cool things that remind people who the Backstreet Boys are and where we’ve come from, so it’s a cool experience.” Backstreet Boys On New Exhibit, ‘Millennium,’ More backstreet-boys-talk-grammy-museum-experience-millennium-legacy-touring Backstreet Boys Talk GRAMMY Museum “Experience,” ‘Millennium’ Legacy & Touring News Speaking of looking back, the group also discussed the 20th anniversary of their record-breaking album Millennium, which was the best-selling album of 1999.”Millennium is probably, to this day, one of the biggest album’s we’ve ever had. I think if we weren’t on the map by that time in most people’s eyes and ears, we were definitely at that point,” Dorough said. “I think that itself is what’s continued the legacy of the Backstreet Boys.”Backstreet Boys: The Experience is currently on display at the GRAMMY Museum L.A. Live in Downtown Los Angeles until Sept. 2. Learn how and when to have your special BSB experience on the Museum’s website.LANY Is The Modern, Thoughtful Pop Group The World Needs Right NowRead morelast_img read more

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Why AR is going to give you superpowers in the future

first_imgThe HoloLens 2 reboots augmented reality for Microsoft. It’s got a new fit, larger field of view and adds detailed hand and eye tracking. But one thing it’s still not is a consumer device.Alex Kipman is a Microsoft technical fellow and inventor of the Kinect and the HoloLens. During a visit to Microsoft’s Redmond campus to try the HoloLens 2 before its debut, we were able to talk to Kipman about his vision for where computing is headed, what HoloLens is becoming and how far away we are from a future where everyday people are actually wearing advanced AR headsets.To Kipman, and Microsoft, a headset like the HoloLens is one of many devices in which sensors will digest the world with AI. As Kipman says, on a headset, it’s the HoloLens. In a home, it’s a smart camera. On a car or drone, it’s an autonomous vehicle. This time, HoloLens 2 aims to connect its AR experiences in the cloud to other devices, including iOS and Android, and feel more like a work tool than ever. Jun 29 • Galaxy S10 5G, OnePlus 7 Pro LG V50 ThinQ 5G: Why you shouldn’t rush to buy a 5G phone 18 Photos 0 Now playing: Watch this: 4:54 Wearable Tech Inside Microsoft’s HoloLens development lab Microsoft HoloLens 2: A first dive into the future of… 53 Photos How much of these technologies is the general consumer going to see in the short term?I have no interest in overhyping, and having a bunch of people think these things are consumer products. And then … get to the trough of disillusionment when people are like, “my God, I’m not using this instead of a PC, instead of a phone, instead of a television.” These devices need to be more comfortable, they need to become more immersive and ultimately they need to have more value-to-price ratio. There is a threshold in the journey where there is enough immersion, enough comfort, enough out-of-box value, where I’ll be happy to announce a consumer product. This is not it.How far are we?That’s impossible me to go guess per se. … I think humans are terrible predictors of time. In enterprise, in first-line worker scenarios, we’re finding great value where this stuff is transformative. Now, to be clear, if I can take the highest watermark, the single best product that exists in this space today and it’s still “not ready for consumers,” you guys can be the judges of everybody else’s product in this space. Now playing: Watch this: May 13 • Galaxy S10E vs. iPhone XR: Every spec compared Share your voice What do you think the killer apps will be?I think communication … essentially defines a secular trend in computing. As it turns out, more often than not, it’s the innovation in the communication stack that changes things. Snail mail to real mail, real mail to messaging, to text messaging, to Snapchatting people. It’s like going from a still to a video to a teleportation. Like, my daughter being able to teleport to play with her cousins in Brazil, as a parent. Me not having to travel around the world to visit all my partners. How much would I love that? If you guys could be having this level of present experience, and you’re in New York, and you guys are in San Francisco and still it’s this immersive, with me in Redmond? It’s not hard to imagine presence as a killer experience for mixed-reality devices.As for monitor replacement … think about you sitting in front of your PC for “n” number of hours a day. This can be immersive and comfortable. Would you go spend this much money, to put this [the HoloLens] on your head with a keyboard and mouse versus buying a 30-inch, $500 monitor? Probably not, so we do try to focus a lot on things that you simply cannot do otherwise. Done right, we will all live in a world very soon where we will interface and interact and instinctually manipulate technology ubiquitously through our days, and you’re not going to be interfacing through monitors.In terms of eye tracking, what challenges or opportunities do you see?I think ultimately the quest here goes back to having our AI understand people, places and things. You want to get as much signal in that conversation as possible. If you’re going to teleport somewhere, I want to be able to know what you’re doing, and have that level of understanding so I can really teleport you. I still want your facial expressions to go through it. That’s something that I am very excited about, the eyes and the emotion of your eyes — there is so much signal there for us to mine to create more immersive and more comfortable experiences.I do think a lot about security of these devices. We’re going to have state-of-the-art iris recognition, the single most secure biometric system with iris recognition through HoloLens, that allows me to get all of that data securely, all of my comfort information, all of my customization. And then lastly, is the idea that we can close the loop. I know at any point in time, where is the device, in relation to your eyes, as we’re starting to form the hologram. Without that signal, I may or may not be getting the image correctly. Which means your eyes and your brain are doing all of the math for everything that I get wrong. Which is what translates into fatigue at the end of the day. We’re able to load most of that math on the device and adjust the hologram as you’re moving, to create sharper, more immersive holograms in the experience. Jul 9 • Killer cameras and battery life might meet their match in the Note 10 Post a comment reading • Why AR is going to give you ‘superpowers’ in the future The creator of HoloLens 2 discusses its future One thing that sets apart your tech versus others in the field is not having any physical control at all, using hands. Is a controller or haptics ever going to happen?100 percent, we love haptics. We started this journey 11 years ago with input. Kinect was about having sensors on the edge that observed environment to understand people, places and things. We went from Kinect input innovation to HoloLens, input plus output. The last one is having these things in my world exchange energy. Having zeros and ones, that transact into photons, actually transact into energy so I can push a hologram, and it pushes me back with equal force. So I can hold the hologram and I can feel the temperature of a hologram. We can call that haptic feedback. Much more sophisticated than how you traditionally would think about [it], but another level of immersion. The minute that I throw a hologram to you and you can catch it and it pushes you back … ooh, immersion just took one crank forward. The minute that I’m holding a hologram and there’s temperature to it, it changes the level of immersion and believability of the experience.Now although that’s absolutely in our dreams, we also believe that humans are tool builders. I would not want my doctor to operate on me without tools, just with their bare hands, anymore than I’d like to eat my food tonight without a fork and a knife. We don’t have any dogma on, “You cannot have something in your hands.” As a matter of fact, in our virtual reality handsets, you’re holding things in your hands: tools, controllers. That device could work here, but I don’t know if you guys have seen that one, it has lights. All you see is the lights over the hologram. It’s not that great of an experience. It’s super easy for us to go create a version of that that goes in IR, so you don’t see the light. It’s absolutely also in our roadmap to think about holding things in the hand. Not just things we create. What if I am a person with a real physical hammer? We’re holding a coffee cup and I still want to touch my hologram?Trying on the HoloLens 2. James Martin/CNET How long are you spending right now using HoloLens each day?Several hours a day is the short answer. We actually designed HoloLens on HoloLens. Wearing HoloLens and looking at the model in 3D is a much more visceral way of being able to understand space and creation on it. But look, when I’m in meetings, I’m not wearing a HoloLens. There are plenty of times when I’m in my office, and I’m using my keyboard, mouse and my PC monitor to do any number of things. But I do wear the device several hours a day and so do most people on the team.What’s the one thing that kept bugging you while making the HoloLens 2?It’s everything. I have a dream that one day there’s only gonna be one problem that keeps us up at night. We count HoloLens in miracles. You know, we can’t have double-digit miracles in any given product cycle. That’s how we kind of size how much innovation or issues we’re going to pack into one release. This carbon fiber enclosure is a huge issue. It’s there so that we can essentially make the device much more comfortable and much more stable. But shipping carbon fiber that doesn’t look like carbon fiber … was incredibly hard, is still incredibly hard, has tons of issues. Inventing a new display engine: that was a huge miracle. The innovation in the lenses, to the vapor chamber in the back, to the fit system, and making the fit system extensible for enterprises, so you can put it under a hard hat, any number of things. That’s just the hardware. The manufacturing, building at scale, at yield? A whole different set of issues. Getting articulated hand tracking to feel instinctual. Getting eye tracking to work over glasses. How do you create this platform from edge to cloud? To staying up at night and saying, “Oh my God, how do we take all of this and make it open?” If you do it wrong, we’re gonna have to live with some of these decisions for the next decade-plus.If you solve all the problems, what’s the dream end state you want?My dream state is I walk on an airplane, man, and every single person on that airplane is wearing our product. That’s not this product, by the way, It’s probably not the next one either. But, ultimately, the goal is these things transform humans, they empower people and organizations to do things they just plainly were not able to do before, they allow us to displace space and time on a daily basis as if we were born instinctually with those superpowers. It’s a work of a lifetime, but certainly I can’t think of anything else better to do with my life. • Tags Augmented reality (AR) Microsoft Microsoft’s HoloLens 2 pulls us further into an augmented reality 8:35 See All 13 Photos Kinect started with consumers, on the Xbox. Do you ever think of revisiting that route for the HoloLens?Look, like everything in life, you learn. I am incredibly proud, obviously, of the work we did with Kinect, and I think Kinect transformed the world. But, look, people in the living room don’t want to stand up and play games … they want to lean back and enjoy and want the precision of a controller in their hands. We didn’t find as much signal in the living room for entertainment with devices like Kinect at the time. But you know, go look today at an Alexa. What are those things doing? They’re recognizing people, they’re recognizing speech. They’re doing a lot of the things that Kinect was doing in 2010. So, obviously, there’s space in people’s homes for devices like Kinect, that recognize people, that recognize the objects in it and understand the context of who you are. But we’re finding way more signal with Kinect in enterprise workloads. They don’t tend to go through a proxy PC. Which is why we then end-of-lifed Kinect for Windows, and we now just launched Azure Kinect, which is of course still tetherable to a PC but also connects directly as an IoT appliance to our cloud.Where’s mixed reality going in the next five years or so, and what part does Microsoft play?I’m not going to guess five years, to be honest with you. Let me say for the duration of this product, let’s say more in the one to two category … I think all the successful ones will be enterprise-bound, primarily first-line worker scenarios, and increasing over time to knowledge worker scenarios. So I’ll give you the prediction for the next two years. Next two years, these are still enterprise-bound. Mobile World Congress 2019 The 51 best VR games But when will that magic augmented world become something for the rest of us?An edited version of our conversation plus a video interview with Kipman are below, from when CNET spoke to him January 31, 2019.  Mobile World Congress 2019 Jun 1 • The Nubia Alpha looks like either a house arrest bracelet or Batman’s phonelast_img read more

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NASA astronauts surreal ISS view would make van Gogh proud

first_img Share your voice Other Labor Day sales you should check out Best Buy: In addition to some pretty solid MacBook deals that have been running for about a week already, Best Buy is offering up to 40% off major appliances like washers, dryers and stoves. There are also gift cards available with the purchase of select appliances. See it at Best BuyDell: Through Aug. 28, Dell is offering an extra 12% off various laptops, desktops and electronics. And check back starting Aug. 29 for a big batch of Labor Day doorbusters. See it at DellGlassesUSA: Aug. 29 – Sept. 3 only, you can save 65% on all frames with promo code labor65. See it at GlassesUSALenovo: The tech company is offering a large assortment of deals and doorbusters through Labor Day, with the promise of up to 56% off certain items — including, at this writing, the IdeaPad 730S laptop for $700 (save $300).See it at LenovoLensabl: Want to keep the frames you already love and paid for? Lensabl lets you mail them in for new lenses, based on your prescription. From now through Sept. 2 only, you can save 20% on the blue light-blocking lens option with promo code BLOCKBLUE. See it at LensablSears: Between now and Sept. 7, you can save up to 40% on appliances (plus an additional 10% if you shop online), up to 60% on mattresses, up to 50% on Craftsman products and more. The store is also offering some fairly hefty cashback bonuses. See it at SearsNote: This post was published previously and is continuously updated with new information.CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page, and find more great buys on the CNET Deals page. Read DJI Osmo Action preview Fury from afar: NASA sees violent volcanoes from space 0 Read Google Home Hub review Sprint Amazon $90 at Daily Steals via Google Express See it An Echo Dot makes a fine match for any Fire edition TV, because you can use the latter to say things like, “Alexa, turn on the TV.” Right now, the 24-inch Insignia Fire TV Edition starts at just $100, while the 32-inch Toshiba Fire TV Editions is on sale for $130. Just add any Fire TV Edition to your cart, then add a third-gen Echo Dot, and presto: The latter is free. Tags HP Laptop 15t Value: $520 (save $780) I thought this might be a mistake, but, no, the weirdly named HP Laptop 15t Value is indeed quite the value at this price. Specs include an Intel Core i7 processor, 12GB of RAM, a 256GB solid-state drive and a 15.6-inch display. However, I strongly recommend paying an extra $50 to upgrade that display to FHD (1,920×1,080), because you’re not likely to be happy with the native 1,366×768 resolution. Mentioned Above Apple iPhone XS (64GB, space gray) Read Lenovo Smart Clock review Free Echo Dot with an Insignia or Toshiba TV (save $50) CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Rylo See It $261 at Daily Steals via Google Express Use promo code 19LABOR10 to get an unusually good deal on JBL’s interesting hybrid product — not quite headphones, and not quite a traditional speaker, but something you wear like neckphones to listen to music on the go. $59 at eBay Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. Best Buy Lenovo 130-15AST 15.6-inch laptop: $210 (save $90) Rylo 5.8K 360 Video Camera: $250 (save $250) $999 JBL Soundgear wearable speaker: $90 (save $160) $60 at Best Buy Comments See It Read the AirPods review Sarah Tew/CNET $6 at Tidal Tidal 3-month family subscription: $5.99 (save $54) Formerly known as the Google Home Hub, Google’s Nest Hub packs a wealth of Google Assistant goodness into a 7-inch screen. At $59, this is within a buck of the best price we’ve seen. It lists for $129 and sells elsewhere in the $89-to-$99 range.This is one item of many available as part of eBay’s Labor Day Sale (which, at this writing, doesn’t specifically mention Labor Day, but that’s how it was pitched to us). Sci-Tech Recently updated to include digital-photo-frame capabilities, the Lenovo Smart Clock brings Google Assistant goodness to your nightstand. It’s a little smaller than the Amazon Echo Show 5, but also a full $30 less (and tied with Prime Day pricing) during this Best Buy Labor Day sale. $210 at Best Buy Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $155 (save $45) Read the Rylo camera preview Koch has a lot of time to contemplate the wonders of orbiting Earth. She’s on an extended stay on the ISS that will eventually earn her the record for the longest single spaceflight by a woman. She’s scheduled to return to the planet in February 2020 after 328 days in space.We’ve seen some heart-stopping views from the ISS, including glowing auroras and dancing moonsets, but Koch’s composite is a dynamic way to witness what the astronauts see. It captures time, light and movement in a single image. Van Gogh would have liked it. $999 See It What’s cooler: A snapshot of a firework exploding in front of you, or full 360-degree video of all the fireworks and all the reactions to seeing them? Oooh, ahhh, indeed. At $250, the compact Rylo dual-lens camera is selling for its lowest price yet. And for an extra $50, you can get the bundle that includes the waterproof housing.This deal runs through Sept. 3; it usually costs $500. The Cheapskate DJI Osmo Action camera: $261 (save $89) $520 at HP Enlarge ImageNASA astronaut Christina Koch shared this psychedelic view from the ISS. NASA Vincent van Gogh was onto something when he envisioned the landscape and the heavens pulled into taffy swirls of light. NASA astronaut Christina Koch shared her own artful view of a starry night with a composite image captured from the International Space Station.”City lights, stars, lightning storms, even satellite flares. A composite of individual photos stacked on top of each other to show all the amazing things we see at night out our window,” Koch tweeted on Wednesday. Originally published July 11, 8:39 a.m. PT.  15 Photos Angela Lang/CNET Share your voice Lenovo Smart Clock: $59.99 (save $20) TVs Speakers Mobile Accessories Cameras Laptops Automobiles Smart Speakers & Displays Turo is kind of like Uber meets Airbnb: You borrow someone’s car, but you do all the driving. I’ve used it many times and found it a great alternative to traditional car-rental services — in part because you get to choose exactly the vehicle you want (not just, say, “midsize”) and in part because you can often do pickup and dropoff right outside baggage claim.Between now and Sept. 1, the first 300 people to check out can get $30 off any Turo rental with promo code LDW30. Chris Monroe/CNET $299 at Amazon Google Nest Hub: $59 (save $70) Turo: Save $30 on any car rental Tags $999 City lights, stars, lightning storms, even satellite flares–A composite of individual photos stacked on top of each other to show all the amazing things we see at night out our window. pic.twitter.com/goDma6dkkP— Christina H Koch (@Astro_Christina) July 10, 2019 Preview • iPhone XS is the new $1,000 iPhone X DJI’s answer to GoPro’s action cameras is rugged little model that’s shockproof, dustproof and waterproof down to 11 meters. It normally runs $350, but this deal drops it to $261 when you apply promo code 19LABOR10 at checkout. Review • iPhone XS review, updated: A few luxury upgrades over the XR Spotify and most other streaming services rely on compressed audio, which robs the listener of full fidelity. Enter Tidal, the only “major” service that delivers lossless audio — meaning at least on par with CD quality, if not better. Want to see (er, hear) the difference for yourself? Grab this excellent extended trial while you can. It’s just $6 for three months, and it’s good for up to six listeners. See at Amazon Turo NASA Space,I’m shocked — shocked! — to learn that stores are turning Labor Day into an excuse to sell stuff. Wait — no, I’m not. As much as I respect the original intent of the holiday (which became official back in 1894), to most of us, it’s just a bonus day off — one that’s blissfully tacked onto a weekend. So, yeah, stores; go ahead, run your sales. I’m listening. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Labor Day doesn’t bring out bargains to compete with the likes of Black Friday (which will be here before you know it), but there are definitely some sales worth your time.For example:We’ve rounded up the best Labor Day mattress deals.We’ve also gathered the best Labor Day laptop deals at Best Buy.The 2019 Vizio P Series Quantum is back under $999.Be sure to check out Amazon’s roughly three dozen Labor Day deals on TVs and audio. Google Express is having a big sale as well, one that includes deals on game consoles, AirPods, iPhones, laptops and more.Below I’ve rounded up a handful of individual items I consider to be the cream of the crop, followed by a handy reference guide to other Labor Day sales. Keep in mind, of course, that products may sell out at any time, even if the sale itself is still running. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. $999 Sarah Tew/CNET Apple iPhone XS $155 at Google Express Sarah Tew/CNET See at Turo 7 Boost Mobile Post a comment The problem with most entry-level laptops: They come with mechanical hard drives. That makes for a mighty slow Windows experience. This Lenovo model features a 128GB solid-state drive, so it should be pretty quick to boot and load software, even with its basic processor. Plus, it has a DVD-burner! That’s not something you see in many modern laptops, especially at this price. Though not technically a Labor Day sale, it’s happening during Labor Day sale season — and it’s too good not to share. Nationwide Distributors, via Google Express, has just about the best AirPods deal we’ve seen (when you apply promo code ZBEDWZ at checkout). This is for the second-gen AirPods with the wireless charging case. Can’t imagine these will last long at this price, so if you’re interested, act fast. Sarah Tew/CNETlast_img read more

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CIID detains man with 1625kg gold

first_imgThe arrestee was identified as Rabiul Islam, 22. Customs Intelligence and Investigation Department (CIID) on Saturday arrested a young man along with 140 gold bars weighing 16.25 kg from Baitul Mukarram Market in the city, reports UNB. DG Moinul also sought assistance from Bangladesh Jewellers Samity and some jewellery ornament traders to seize the consignment, said CIID assistant director Shahiduzzaman. On Saturday morning, a CIID team, led by assistant director Zakaria, arrested Rabiul in association with the local traders along with the gold consignment around 5:20pm. Following a secret information that a big consignment of gold bars would come to the market illegally, CIID director general Moinul Khan directed a team to start vigilance there.last_img read more

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CocaCola to Break Ground on First US Plant in 10 Years Student

first_imgCoca-Cola to break ground on new facilityCoca-Cola will break ground on its first new U.S. facility on Tuesday morning in north Houston.The bottler opening the plant, Coca-Cola Southwest Beverages, says it is the first Coca-Cola production plant built in the U.S. in more than 10 years. The company announced the $250 million facility will be close to 1 million square feet and is expected to open in 2020. The Houston Chronicle reports the new plant is meant to replace two other plants and several warehouses in Houston. An executive with the bottling company told the Chronicle he does not expect layoffs. The latest in Houston sportsJim Mone/APHouston Rockets’ James Harden, left, and Minnesota Timberwolves’ Jimmy Butler during Game 4 of their 2018 playoff series.The Astros’ magic number is down to three, the Texans still haven’t won a game, and while the Rockets tout their team at Media Day, rumors swirl about a Houston native the Rockets might want to trade for.Over the weekend, the Astros clinched a spot in the postseason, sweeping the Angels in their final regular season home stand. Only seven games remain as they look to lock up their position in the MLB postseason.Meanwhile, the Texans lost their home opener to the New York Giants 27-22, falling short in what was seen as one of the more winable games on their schedule.Plus, rumors continue to swirl around a possible trade that could bring Tomball-native and four-time All-Star Jimmy Butler to the Rockets.  In the audio above, sportswriter Jeff Balke joins us live from Rockets Media Day to discuss those and other developments in Houston sports. Proposed immigration rules may impact thousands in HoustonThe Trump administration is expanding the discretion immigration officers have when they decide whether or not to grant a green card or work permit, according to new rules announced this weekend.New standards could limit thousands of immigrants’ access to green cards and work permits in Houston. Report: Houston area to hit 10 million people by 2040Greater Houston’s population will surpass 10 million by the year 2040, up from roughly 7 million today, a projection from METRO Next finds. Analysts say the growth could strain the region’s infrastructure.center_img Tuesday, September 25, 2018Student arrested for threat against Columbus ISDCourtesy of Columbus ISDA water tower in Columbus posted on the Columbus ISD website.A Columbus Independent School District student has been arrested for allegedly making a threat on the social media app Snapchat. The threat caused Columbus ISD to close of all district campuses Monday.Columbus police say the student will be charged with a terroristic threat, a third-degree felony. Authorities say the suspect is a juvenile and the name and other identifying information will not be released.School officials received word of the threat just before midnight Sunday.Columbus ISD officials are urging parents to continue monitoring students’ social media online and report anything that may be cause for concern.Classes will resume Tuesday at regular times with an increased police presence. Sharelast_img read more

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I was stuck in middle of A34 with traffic zooming past Disabled

first_imgThe dropped kerb was blocked by a parked car The Highway Code’s Rule 243 states that you should ‘not stop or park where the kerb has been lowered to help wheelchair users and powered mobility vehicles, or where it would obstruct cyclists except when forced to do so by stationary traffic.’ Parking a vehicle fully or partially across a dropped kerb is classed as an obstruction and either the police or local council can enforce the contravention. Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLive Get the biggest Daily stories by emailSubscribeSee our privacy noticeThank you for subscribingSee our privacy noticeCould not subscribe, try again laterInvalid EmailDisabled Sheila Gatehouse was left stranded on her mobility scooter in the middle of a busy dual carriageway – after someone parked a car over the dropped kerb of a pedestrian crossing. The 64-year-old was stuck in the island half-way across the A34 for 30 minutes, until two kind passers-by lifted her and her scooter onto the opposite pavement. Mrs Gatehouse had been for a check-up at the Royal Stoke University Hospital after being discharged following a two-week admission with a chest infection and flu. She said: “I was going for a check-up in the heart and lung department. When I got there, the car wasn’t on the crossing. “After my appointment, I was on the pelican crossing opposite Entrance One, on the A34. I got to the central reservation and I saw the car. There was no point trying to cross any further because I knew I wouldn’t be able to get up the kerb. ‘I was there for half an hour…’ “I was there for half an hour. It was freezing and I was getting so frustrated. I couldn’t go back, I had traffic coming on both sides of me. I just wanted to get home.” Punter found hiding in bushes Andy Day, coordinator at North Staffs Pensioners’ Convention, said any motorist obstructing a dropped kerb could cause havoc for people dependent on a wheelchair or mobility scooter. He said: “I would issue a plea to people who are able-bodied and do not have to think about things like this for themselves to think about the needs of others who are less able to get about. “Please be mindful of the difficulties some people have.” Want to tell us about something going on where you live? Let us know – Tweet us  @SOTLive  or message us on  our Facebook page. And if you have pictures to share, tag us on Instagram at  StokeonTrentLive. Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital windowcenter_img Sheila was stuck in the middle of the A34 for half an hour Mrs Gatehouse, who lives at Norwich Place, in Clayton, says she called the police on 101 to report the Black Astra and the fact she was stranded on January 21. She says she was advised there would be a wait before anyone could go to the scene. She said: “In the end, two strangers who were crossing helped me. They were two big, strong men – they needed to be because they lifted my scooter with me on it. I’m very grateful to them, I don’t know what I would have done without them. Read MoreNew cameras set to launch in Stoke-on-Trent that can catch YOU speeding from a kilometre away   “The car was parked all across the crossing, on the pavement and on the road. It had a sticker in the window that said something like they worked for the NHS and were exempt, but that doesn’t give them the right to park like that. “Whoever did it is an idiot, it should have been towed away.” Police search for missing woman Driver named following fatal collisionlast_img read more

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Australia approves second international airport in Sydney

first_img Travelweek Group Australia approves second international airport in Sydney SYDNEY — The Australian government has approved plans for the construction of a second international airport in Sydney, the country’s largest city, finally putting an end to decades of indecision.Scheduled to open in the mid 2020s, the airport is expected to relieve some pressure off of Australia’s Kingsford Smith Airport, one of the world’s oldest airports, reports Deutsche Welle. It comes with a price tag of 5 billion Australian dollars (US$3.7 billion) and will initially feature just one runway that will accommodate the world’s largest commercial airline – the Airbus A380.With the addition of a second airport, the number of air passengers flying to Sydney is expected to spike by 10 million people per year.Plans for a second airport have been kicking around since 1946, but fears over noise pollution and squabbling over funding and alternative sites essentially put those plans on hold.The projected site – 45 kilometres from the city’s central business district – will allow the airport to operate without the same overnight flight curfew that restricts the old airport. Posted by Tuesday, December 13, 2016 center_img << Previous PostNext Post >> Share Tags: Airports, Australialast_img read more

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Book a Vegas package for a chance to win a free trip

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Travelweek Group Monday, May 1, 2017 Posted by How does a free trip to the ‘Entertainment Capital of the World’ sound to you? Travel agents are invited to book their way to Las Vegas with a new contest launched by WestJet Vacations, WestJet and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.Agents who book any Las Vegas package with WestJet Vacations will be entered to win one of two trips to Las Vegas that includes roundtrip flights for two, a three-night stay at a participating hotel, show tickets, excursions and more.“Travel agents play a vital role to our success and we want to make sure they are rewarded for their hard work in selling and promoting our destination,” said David Han, Senior Account Manager, LVCVA Canada office. “We will continue to invest in travel trade to provide better assets and platforms for them to succeed in the future.”Agents must submit their bookings on trackmylasvegasbookings.com. Agents must then register their bookings using the code CANADA under the LVCVA Tracking Code. Every WestJet Vacations package booked to Las Vegas earns one entry into the contest.More news:  Onex paying big to get WestJet and that will send airfares soaring, says CWTBooking window runs from May 1-June 30, 2017. Contest excludes residents of Quebec.For more information, go to travelweek.ca/contests.center_img Tags: Las Vegas, WestJet, WestJet Vacations Share Book a Vegas package for a chance to win a free triplast_img read more

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Music video website Vevo has launched a 24hour li

first_imgMusic video website Vevo has launched a 24-hour linear music TV channel in the US and Canada.Universal Music and Sony-backed Vevo has initially launched the channel on the web and via Xbox and Roku set-tops, as well as on iOS devices and Android and Windows Mobile handsets. However, it also has expressed an ambition to strike traditional carriage deals with cable operators.Vevo TV will feature a constant stream of videos curated by VJs on the model pioneered by MTV in the 1980s. Vevo CEO Rio Caraeff told the Financial Times that the channel was “about a return to how it used to be” and that the company saw a demand for a “programmed, linear experience”. The channel will be supported by advertising.Billboard cited Caraeff as saying that Vevo planned to launch Vevo TV channels in international markets including Europe and Latin America in the near future, and is currently working to add local programming capabilities.Vevo is currently in negotiations with Google to renew its existing distribution deal with YouTube, which Caraeff said was “nearing completion”.last_img read more

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Dailymotion has launched a dedicated space for its

first_imgDailymotion has launched a dedicated space for its coverage of music festivals over the summer.The Orange-owned video site has launched Summer Music Festivals. The site will stream performances from festivals in the US, UK, France, Switzerland, Spain, Belgium, and Hungary throughout July and August, featuring bands including Queens of the Stone Age, Suede, Neil Young & Crazyhorse, Arctic Monkeys, Blur, Wu Tang Clan, Slayer, Lamb of God, 30 Seconds to Mars, Snoop Lion and Justice.Viewers will be able to embed players into their own social media pages to share with friends as well as watching the events live on Dailymotion. Archive footage from the festivals will also be available on the site for up to three months.Dailymotion’s summer festival coverage will kick off with this week’s Volt Festival in Hungary, followed by Les Eurockéennes in Belfort, France, the Cruilla Festival in Barcelona, Jazz à Vienne in Vienne, France, Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival in New York, Astropolis in Brest, France, Dour in Belgium, Tout un Foin in France, Paleo Festival in Nyon, Switzerland, Balaton Sound by Lake Balaton in Hungary and Kendal Calling in the UK, all in July. In August it will stream coverage of the  Open Air Festival in Derbyshire, the UK and Rock en Seine in France.last_img read more

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Google has launched its lowprice Chromecast HDMI

first_imgGoogle has launched its low-price Chromecast HDMI streaming stick in 11 countries outside of its home market of the US. The device is available now in Canada and 10 European countries:  the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and the Nordic countries of Denmark, Norway, Finland, and Sweden.“Since announcing Chromecast in the US, we’ve grown to include more of your favourite apps and websites. Those numbers will continue to grow, and we want to bring Chromecast to more people around the world,” said Chromecast vice president of product management, Mario Queiroz, announcing the expansion.Google said that apps available on the device in Europe would include Google’s own Google Play Movies and Google Play Music stores, as well as Netflix in the territories where the OTT service is live.It also said it is working with local content providers to add more content to the device. In the UK, the BBC’s iPlayer is available at launch, in France TV Pluzz and SFR TV apps can be accessed with CanalPlay due to be added soon, while Watchever is available in Germany with Maxdome coming soon in this market.“Chromecast will keep getting better. We recently opened up Chromecast to developers, and in a few short weeks more than 3,000 developers worldwide have signed up to bring their apps and websites to Chromecast. You’ll soon have more TV shows, movies, videos, sports, music and games to choose from,” said Queiroz.The device is available to buy now on Amazon, Google Play and in stores like Currys PC World, Saturn and Media Markt. In the UK it is priced at £30 (€35.80).last_img read more

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THE PSNI say officers were out on patrol this even

first_img THE PSNI say officers were out on patrol this evening in the Victoria Bridge area.The increased police presence followed reports of anti social behaviour in the area.A police spokesperson said: “Remember to report anti social behaviour, criminal behaviour and anything suspicious as soon as you see it. ShareTweet “This gives us the best chance to catch the people doing it.”POLICE PATROLLING VICTORIA BRIDGE OVER ANTI-SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR was last modified: May 25th, 2017 by John2John2 Tags:center_img POLICE PATROLLING VICTORIA BRIDGE OVER ANTI-SOCIAL BEHAVIOURVICTORIA BRIDGElast_img read more

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The article Total War over the Petrodollar was ori

first_imgThe article Total War over the Petrodollar was originally published at caseyresearch.com. The conspiracy theories surrounding the death of Total SA’s chief executive, Christophe de Margerie, started the second the news broke of his death. Under mysterious circumstances in Moscow, his private jet collided with a snowplow just after midnight. De Margerie was the CEO of Total, France’s largest oil company.He’d just attended a private meeting with Russian Prime Minister Medvedev, at a time when the West’s relationship with Russia is fraught, to say the least.One has better odds of being struck by lightning at an airport then a snow plow, or any other ground support vehicles hitting a plane and killing all inside the plane, in my opinion. And I say that as someone who’s familiar with airports, having worked at Vancouver International Airport when I was in university; I was the one who would bring the plane into its parking bay.If it weren’t for those short odds, a snowplow on the runway with an allegedly drunk driver would be the perfect crime. But who would benefit from his death?De Margerie was one of the few business leaders who spoke out against the isolation of Russia. On this last trip to Moscow, he railed against sanctions and the obstacles to Russian companies obtaining credit.He was also an outspoken supporter of Russia’s position in natural gas pricing and transportation disputes with Ukraine, telling Reuters in an interview in July that Europe should not cut its dependence on Russian gas but rather focus on making the supplies more secure.But what could have made de Margerie a total liability is Total’s involvement in plans to build a plant to liquefy natural gas on the Yamal Peninsula of Russia in partnership with Novatek. Its most ambitious project in Russia to date, it would facilitate the shipping of 800 million barrels of oil equivalent of LNG to China via the Arctic.Compounding this sin, Total had just announced that it’s seeking financing for a gas project in Russia in spite of the current sanctions against Russia. It planned to finance its share in the $27-billion Yamal project using euros, yuan, Russian rubles, and any other currency but US dollars.Did this direct threat to the petrodollar make this “true friend of Russia”—as Putin called de Margerie—some very powerful and dangerous enemies amongst the power that be, whether in the French government, the EU, or the US?In my book The Colder War, one chapter deals with “mysterious deaths” and how they are linked to being on the wrong side of the political equation. Whether it’s going against Putin or against the petrodollar, there are many who have fallen on both sides.If Total doesn’t close the $27 billion financing it needs to move forward with the Yamal LNG project then we’ll know someone stepped in to prevent an attack on the petrodollar.  The CEO of Total, before his death and his CFO were both strong supporters of Total raising the $27 billion in non US dollars and moving the project forward with the Russians.  But, this could all change if the financing does not complete.How many other Western executives who dare to help Russia bypass sanctions—and turn it into an energy powerhouse—will die under suspicious circumstances?Marin Katusa, is author of The Colder War, manager of multiple global energy-exploration hedge funds, and co-founder of Copper Mountain Mining Corporation. Click here to get a copy of his must-read new book, The Colder War. Inside, you’ll discover exactly how Putin is taking over the energy sector, how far ahead he is, and how alarming it is that no one in the US or Europe has even entered the race. last_img read more

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A disabled campaigner who has been refused permiss

first_imgA disabled campaigner who has been refused permission to apply for a vital disability benefit in a way that is accessible to him has begun legal proceedings against the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).Graham Kirwan has been told that he is unable to communicate via email as he attempts to claim personal independence payment (PIP).Kirwan had previously been a long-term claimant of disability living allowance (DLA) but had his payments suspended when he failed to respond to letters asking him to apply for PIP, letters that he says he never received and that would not have been accessible to him anyway.Kirwan, who is partially-sighted, has computer software that can magnify text, but it does not generally work with scanned or PDF documents.He has been told by DWP to use the charity Citizens Advice to help with his application for PIP – which is gradually replacing working-age DLA – but he wants to fill in the form himself, so he can take responsibility for the accuracy of the answers.And he points to DWP guidance that states that email is an acceptable alternative for communication for people with his access needs.Kirwan says that while most people can fill in their PIP claim form with a pen costing just 10 pence (DWP provides a free envelope and postage), he has spent £1,200 equipping himself with the necessary technology to communicate effectively, as well as facing annual costs of about another £700.He said: “In this instance the disability is being deliberately created by the DWP. I have no communication disability? when allowed to use email and assistive software.“Email is cost effective and creates independence, choice and control?.“Using Citizens Advice when I can do something for myself is using up their valuable resources and my limited time?.“Although they may be experts in the field of compiling forms, it only takes one mistake (by a first-time volunteer)? on their part for me to fail to be awarded PIP.“The responsibility would be mine, as I am forced to sign a piece of paper which I cannot be 100 per cent sure is correct.”Kirwan has told DWP that completing forms over the telephone or through a home visit from a civil servant places him at a substantial disadvantage to other disabled people, while he has been told that forms completed over the telephone would still need to be sent to him to be read and signed.He has told DWP in a legal letter that “the DWP system for sending and receiving information to blind and partially sighted people is at best ad hoc and prone to consistent failure”.Kirwan, who represents Dudley Centre for Inclusive Living on accessible information issues, has already secured one legal victory over a government department, after a threatened judicial review led to the Department of Health publishing its first accessible information standard earlier this year.A DWP spokeswoman confirmed that the department had received Kirwan’s email, but she said she was unable to comment further because of the legal nature of the complaint.last_img read more

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The future of the governments Access to Work AtW

first_imgThe future of the government’s Access to Work (AtW) disability employment scheme is in jeopardy because of “bureaucratic incompetence” and a cost-cutting drive to reduce people’s support packages, according to new research.The report, commissioned by Inclusion London, found that “shocking levels of delay, error, and the de-skilling of staff” were putting Deaf and disabled people’s jobs at risk.The Barriers to Work report, written by disabled researcher and campaigner Catherine Hale, is based on a survey of 320 AtW customers – more than half of whom were Deaf or had hearing impairments – which was carried out last year by the campaign group StopChanges2AtW*.Hale said the AtW scheme – set up in 1994 and providing disabled people with funding to pay for some of the extra disability-related expenses they face at work – was “a cornerstone of the movement for equality and civil rights for Deaf and disabled people in the UK”.But her report concludes that the programme has been “beset with so much bureaucratic incompetence and obstructionism in recent years that, in many respects, Access to Work is no longer fit for purpose”.Marsha de Cordova, a disabled Labour MP and her party’s new shadow minister for disabled people, told a parliamentary event held to launch the report that “poor policy” and “severe cuts” had left the scheme “unworkable for so many of us”.She said the reviews that led to people’s packages being cut “ultimately will result in many Deaf and disabled people being unable to stay in or retain their work”.De Cordova (pictured, speaking at the event), who said she had benefited from AtW support through most of her career, said: “This scheme, as we all know, is a fundamental part of employing Deaf and disabled people and ensuring that we can stay in work.”She said her own experiences ranged from the programme being “very good to being poor and incredibly frustrating”, and added: “They make it so difficult to be assessed for support.”She said: “I intend in my role, just as an activist, because I am first and foremost a disability rights activist, to press on the government to ensure that they adequately fund this scheme, but also they have to address, they have to reverse, all of the stripping away of cuts, because without that the scheme is not going to work and we will not see more Deaf and disabled people into work.”One of the aspects the report warns about is the imposition of a cap – currently £42,100 – on annual AtW packages, which already affects new claimants but will not affect existing customers until next April.The cap is expected to affect 200 AtW customers, of whom about 90 per cent will be Deaf or have hearing loss.StopChanges2AtW believes this will discourage employers from recruiting Deaf people, increase the likelihood of discrimination, and reduce equality of opportunity.Paul Redfern, the British Deaf Association’s senior community development manager, told the launch event that a number of Deaf professionals had lost their registrations because they were not given enough interpreting support by AtW to maintain their “continuing professional development”.He said the new cap meant that Deaf people would be forced “to leave work and be replaced by hearing people”, and he added: “Employers will become more and more reluctant to employ Deaf members of staff because they will be seen as expensive.”Penny Parker, who uses Access to Work, and is employed by the disabled people’s organisation Equal Lives, had her account of her AtW experiences read by Mark Harrison, chief executive of Equal Lives, as she was not able to attend the launch event.She said she couldn’t fault the scheme when she began claiming support in 2010, but since AtW began to review her package towards the end of 2015 she said her experience had been “horrendous”, and ended – after a year – with a package “that meant I go to work less and pay more”.Parker, who is totally blind, said one adviser had “felt the need to question why I don’t drive myself to work”.The process had affected her job, her mental health, her relationship with her support workers, the taxi company that drives her to work, and her family and private life.She said: “I was so impressed by the scheme when I set out in 2010. Now it’s a sham and disables rather than enables disabled people to work.”Harrison said Parker had called him while he was on the way to the event to say that the taxi company she uses had told her it would not be able to take her to work the next day because AtW had not paid its invoices since April.He said: “AtW said, ‘We have changed the way we want our invoices formatted,’ but they had not informed either Penny or the taxi company.“She is a prisoner in her own home, unable to do her job because of AtW.”Deidre Brock, the SNP’s shadow spokeswoman for fair work and employment, who was also at the launch, said people were facing “nothing more nor less than discrimination”.She said the report’s 11 recommendations for improvements to the scheme – which include commitments not to place Deaf and disabled people at financial risk, and to put the scheme at the heart of the government’s strategy to increase the number of disabled people in work – were “more than acceptable” and “actually quite modest in scope”.Most of those surveyed by StopChanges2AtW had full-time jobs, while a third had received AtW for at least 10 years.But only 15 per cent of those surveyed said they found it easy to apply for AtW or to use it.Among the problems they faced were: not being told when their AtW award was ending, which left people in debt to their support workers; significant amounts of time spent disputing their needs with AtW staff; lengthy delays in assessments for support, which in some cases left people unable to take up a new job or offer of work; and lost paperwork, again leaving many people in debt.As many as 50 respondents said that without AtW they would be unemployed and reliant on benefits.Of the survey respondents, nearly half (46 per cent) said there had been changes to their AtW package, but only three per cent said this had led to an increase in their support.There was substantial evidence of: “rationing” of support by AtW, with more frequent re-assessments and tighter eligibility criteria; a higher burden of proof to show need for support; increased complexity and unnecessary repetition in AtW forms; and a perception by respondents that they were “under surveillance and suspicion”.AtW staff frequently used phrases such as “funding cuts”, “too expensive”, “need to make savings” and the “need to reduce fraud” when they told claimants that their levels of support were changing.One of those who took part in the survey, Sayeeda, said: “The way Access to Work treated me was horrible.“I was talked to in a way where the advisor thought that they knew better than me about the support that I need to do my job. It was always a very aggressive tone.”Another, Angela, said it took her seven months to secure the funding she needed to pay for support workers while she was at work.She said: “During this period, I frequently went without anything to eat and drink all day because I did not have a support worker to assist me with feeding.”A third disabled woman, Sue, said the way she had been treated by AtW “and the amount of obstacles repeatedly put in my way, have very seriously affected both my ability to continue working, and my mental health, to the point that my GP has had to intervene”.The report concludes: “An apparent agenda of cost cutting rather than investing to save is putting Deaf and Disabled people’s jobs and livelihoods at risk.“If this trend continues we will see reduced diversity in the UK workforce, and an increase in the numbers of Deaf and Disabled people claiming out of work benefits.”Asked to respond to the report, a DWP spokeswoman said: “We want more disabled people to get into employment and keep their jobs.“The Access to Work grant can provide over £40,000 of practical support a year, which is tailored to individuals’ needs and can include travel to work, support workers and specialist equipment.“We continuously review the scheme to make sure it’s working in the best way possible, and last year we launched a digital service to make the application process more accessible and efficient.“Last year 25,000 people had their request approved by Access to Work, an increase of eight per cent from 2015-16.”In the November 2015 spending review, the government pledged to increase the number of people the scheme helped by 25,000 a year by 2020, increasing spending by nearly a quarter.But earlier this month, the government was accused of manipulating statistics in an attempt to hide the ongoing barriers, cuts and harassment experienced by AtW claimants, following the release of experimental figures which showed the number of disabled people approved every year for support from the programme had fallen by 15 per cent under seven years of Conservative rule.The number of people who had Access to Work support approved in 2016-17 was nearly 2,000 higher than the previous year, but the figure for 2016-17 (23,630) was still more than 4,000 lower than in the final year of the last Labour government (27,760).Critics said the way DWP was publishing AtW statistics meant it was impossible to know how many disabled people were currently receiving support compared with previous years, or how the average level of support packages had risen or fallen.*Its publication was delayed by the general election, the parliamentary summer recess and the party political conference seasonlast_img read more

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Elon Musk Gets Verbal Approval for NY to DC Hyperloop

first_img Image credit: The Boring Company via PCMag Fireside Chat | July 25: Three Surprising Ways to Build Your Brand This story originally appeared on PCMag How would you like to rocket from New York City to Washington, D.C., in 29 minutes via an underground tunnel? Elon Musk wants to make it happen.The increasingly busy entrepreneur tweeted yesterday that he had received “verbal govt approval” for The Boring Company to build a Hyperloop underground tunnel connecting New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and D.C. It would send passengers flying between the Big Apple and our nation’s capital in less than 30 minutes.”City center to city center in each case, with up to a dozen or more entry/exit elevators in each city,” he said in a follow-up tweet.Musk did not reveal which government entity had approved the East Coast project, though he mentioned later that the City of Chicago “approached us about doing a high-speed tunnel from O’Hare to downtown.” When a reporter commented that announcing a verbal agreement was “premature … unless you’re drumming up support for the project,” Musk responded that “Support would be much appreciated!””If you want this to happen fast, please let your local & federal elected representatives know. Makes a big difference if they hear from you,” he wrote. “Still a lot of work needed to receive formal approval, but am optimistic that will occur rapidly.”Musk’s Boring Company is named after equipment that will bore underground tunnels intended to alleviate above-ground traffic. He first talked it up on Twitter in December, and while some took it as a joke, Musk is serious and ready to dig. In April, the Boring Company posted a video offering a first look at the underground transportation system it’s hoping to develop. Drivers would pull their car onto a metal platform on the side of the road, and the vehicle would then be lowered into the underground tunnel system.”First set of tunnels are to alleviate greater LA urban congestion,” Musk tweeted today. “Will start NY-D.C. in parallel. Then prob LA-SF and a TX loop.”The Hyperloop, meanwhile, is another Musk moonshot. He first proposed it in 2013, outling a system whereby passengers would be transported at super high speeds via tubes that are constructed above or below the ground. At the time, Musk said he was too busy to pursue the project himself, and called on others to make it a reality. A few companies have made some progress, but there’s still work to be done.Musk’s plans for the East Coast were met with skepticism, especially in New York City, where commuters there are in the midst of the “summer of hell.” Multiple commuter train lines are not running into New York’s Penn Station on weekdays until September so repairs can be done, pushing people onto PATH trains and ferries. The effort will also require coordination between several states rather than just California on the West Coast.If anyone can do it, it’s probably Musk. His SpaceX commercial spaceflight firm is currently shuttling cargo to the International Space Station, while Tesla is now producing its more affordable Model 3 electric sedan. And of course, he’s eager to blast off to other planets, particularly Mars. But first, the moon?During an appearance this week at the International Space Station Research and Development (ISSR&D) conference, Musk called for a moon base “to get the public real fired up” about space travel, NBC News reports.”Having some permanent presence on another heavenly body, which would be the kind of moon base, and then getting people to Mars and beyond — that’s the continuance of the dream of Apollo that I think people are really looking for,” Musk said. Elon Musk Gets Verbal ‘Approval’ for NY to D.C. Hyperloop Chloe Albanesius 4 min read Next Article Executive Editor, PCMagcenter_img Elon Musk says he received ‘verbal govt approval’ for The Boring Company to build a Hyperloop that would rocket you from New York to D.C. in 29 minutes. July 21, 2017 Learn from renowned serial entrepreneur David Meltzer how to find your frequency in order to stand out from your competitors and build a brand that is authentic, lasting and impactful. 98shares Add to Queue Elon Musk Enroll Now for $5last_img read more

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Historical Rent Control Ruling Is Bad for Real Estate Entrepreneurs and Tenants

first_img –shares Too many disincentives for landlords will prevent new rental units from ever making it to the real estate market. The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. Add to Queue 6 min read 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List Image credit: Piyush Hatolkar | Getty Images Historical Rent Control Ruling Is Bad for Real Estate Entrepreneurs and Tenants Alike. Here’s Why. Guest Writer May 16, 2019 Oregon recently made real estate history, becoming the first state in the union to implement rent control statewide.I know the Oregon real estate market well since I grew up there and bought my first rental property when I was 14. Given that, I know that Oregonians mean well with this new law; they want to control the out-of-control cost of living in their state.But I have to disagree with rent control as the solution. In fact, this effort to help and support the state’s most vulnerable residents will unfortunately negatively impact them the most.Why? Because rent control simply doesn’t work. Rather, it drives down construction, discourages investment in new rental properties and generally disrupts the rental market in fundamental ways.And this is far more than just an Oregon story. Similar rent control bills have recently been considered in California, New York and Colorado as well, and the city of Chicago is working on its own related regulations.It won’t work in any of those areas either.Related: 6 Amazing Tips on Turning Real Estate Into a Real FortuneToday’s real estate market is complex and interconnected.Home ownership is on the decline and rents are ever increasing. In fact, according to a report from the Terner Center at UC Berkeley, there were 600,000 fewer “owner-occupied” homes in 2016 than there were in 2015, signaling a shift in ownership of suburban homes due to the foreclosure crisis.There are simply more renters today than in the past, and the supply of new rentals isn’t keeping up with this demand. That’s what’s driving rental affordability at the moment — there just isn’t enough supply.Tenants become the victims when landlords have their hands tied.Rent control only makes this disconnect worse by creating disincentives for builders and landlords, preventing new rental units from ever making it to the market at all.Worst of all, it eats away at today’s already old rental stock, eventually impacting tenants’ quality of life. Because it costs money to own a rental property – there are ongoing maintenance costs, management costs and of course rising property taxes to pay.What happens when landlords are unable to raise their rents in order to keep up with those costs? They stop investing in their properties, and eventually they become more and more dilapidated. No more big improvements, no more preventative maintenance, no more updates.The focus shifts instead to maximizing the rent they’re able to get out of the property, the end result is run-down, cockroach-infested buildings and homes that no one can afford to fix up because rent controls have cut off their source of capital. In that situation, everybody loses.Related: Learn How to Make Smarter Real Estate InvestmentsWorkarounds are emerging.We’re already starting to see the negative impact of the new law on tenants in Oregon, as more and more property managers are talking about removing first-time tenants after 11 months under “no cause” provisions that end after the first year of occupancy. By doing so, they’re still able to evict tenants for “no cause,” effectively allowing them to sidestep rent controls and raise their rent on the next tenant based on market rates.Just like that, tenants have lost one additional month of a place to live, all to satisfy the demands of the new rent control law.That may be the best-case scenario too, as tenants with longer-term leases are suffering even more, as landlords reduce their capital expenditures on properties in order to make sure they enjoy a positive return on their investment.It’s the economically disadvantaged who get hit the hardest by rent control. Already, I’ve been receiving numerous solicitations from real estate agents wanting to assist me in selling my Oregon rentals. Who would I sell them to? It won’t be landlords, but instead those renters who can already afford to buy. This will further reduce the number and quality of rentals in the area as nicer rentals are sold. It will also push apartment owners into converting to condos and further reducing supply for the most vulnerable. It doesn’t have to be this way.There’s a smarter solution. In fact, there’s a functioning model for affordable housing to copy that’s currently being used in Singapore. I know we have a subsidized, mixed-income model in the U.S., but it is not pervasive enough or market-driven enough. In Singapore, developers are incentivized with property tax credits in exchange for setting aside a portion of their rental units for low-income families, offering them reduced rent as part of the deal.Related: ‘Million Dollar Listing’ Real Estate Expert Ryan Serhant on How Small Businesses Can Make a Big ImpactThese aren’t your typical “low income” units either. Under the terms of Singapore’s system, the rentals are required to be part of their general inventory and cannot be isolated, lower quality or otherwise different. The city then regulates all rent, so landlords receive only one rent check from the city.The system accomplishes a couple of different goals:It mixes wealth within neighborhoods. As a result, there are no exclusive wealthy neighborhoods in Singapore and no impoverished neighborhoods, because everyone lives side by side regardless of income.Neighbors don’t know who’s who. Incomes can vary by household, but they all still live right next to each other. It’s a true melting pot.By subsidizing rents in this way, Singapore allows the local rental market to function organically, with landlords making all of the decisions about screening their own tenants, rents being set by demand and the market growing as needed. The only difference is that those tenants who meet certain economic criteria are eligible for assistance and able to live in any residential building in the city. Everything else goes for market rent.For tenants, this ensures a certain standard of care and quality for the properties they are living in.For landlords, it allows them to bring in tenants of different incomes to commingle in the same neighborhoods and buildings, without giving up the power of market rates. Those market rates and tax credits incentivize more building, which increases supply and helps keep rents from skyrocketing.  It’s a model that works in Singapore, and it’s one that’s worth considering in this country as well. Because rent control isn’t the answer for landlords, tenants, or the communities they live in.   Real Estate Joe Edgar CEO of TenantCloud Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Next Article Apply Now »last_img read more

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