Saturday, July 28, 2012

Friend or foe, US gymnasts don't mind who watches

LONDON (AP) ? Aly Raisman can almost feel the eyes on her as she and her U.S. gymnastics teammates finish their training session. Sure enough, she'll look up and see a couple of heads in the doorway.

Russians, usually. Sometimes the Romanians.

"We always try and do a little better," Raisman said with the hint of a smirk, "maybe intimidate them a bit."

If there were any doubts the American women are the ones to beat at the London Olympics, they've been erased by the amateur espionage the last few days.

When the Americans opened Thursday's podium training session with a barrage of Amanars, the high-scoring vaults that might very well decide the gold medal, a Chinese coach made sure he had a front-row seat. Russian coach Alexander Alexandrov just happened to make his way to the bathroom when the Americans were doing vault one day, and couldn't resist stopping for a minute or two.

"They watch us, we don't watch them," U.S. coach John Geddert said.

Now, before the Americans are accused of being overconfident, they've had their London plan in mind for a while now. The gymnasts upgraded their routines months ago, and those monster vaults have been in the works for several years. If the Russians, Romanians or defending Olympic champion Chinese unveil some new tricks, there's not a whole lot the Americans can do about it now.

The women's competition begins Sunday with qualifying. The team final is Tuesday night.

And, let's be honest, the Americans have earned the right to strut a little. They are, after all, the reigning world champions, beating Russia by four points last fall in a rout.

Jordyn Wieber is the world all-around champion, and her only two losses since 2008 have been to American teammates. McKayla Maroney won the vault title at worlds, while Raisman took home a bronze on floor exercise and was fourth in the all-around. Gabby Douglas upstaged Wieber at the Olympic trials, and her uneven bars performance is a better show than anything those circus acrobats can do.

"To me, it doesn't make a difference what they're doing if we do what we do," said Geddert, also Wieber's personal coach. "We're not going to change anything because they're doing something else. We're going to do what we do."

Despite winning three of the last five team titles at the world championships, the Americans have won only one Olympic gold medal, and that was back in 1996 with The Magnificent Seven. But this is the deepest team, top to bottom, the U.S. has had since Atlanta, and those show-stopping vaults could give the Americans a decisive advantage.

The Amanar is worth 0.7 points more than most other gymnasts' vault. Execution scores still have to be factored in, of course. But assuming each American does an Amanar in team finals, where three gymnasts compete on each event and all three scores count, the U.S. could build a sizable lead over Russia, Romania and China with just one event.

"We've been working so hard on them, and it shows we really want this," Raisman said. "It's a huge advantage."

So is their attitude.

Rather than curling into a ball or hiding in a corner, the Americans have embraced the attention and the expectations. They thought it was cool to make the cover of Sports Illustrated's Olympic preview, and they've spent more time with Ryan Seacrest than those celebs angling for judging gigs on "American Idol."

They take the spying as a compliment ? those who acknowledge noticing it, that is. They even managed to steal the spotlight from that gaudy floor at the O2 Arena, showing up to podium training with leotards that were, if you can imagine, an even brighter shade of pink.

Don't let their flashy fashion fool you. The Americans' focus remains on an entirely different color: gold.

"We're like soldiers," Maroney said. "We just come to get the job done."


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Wall Street rises on GDP, stimulus hopes

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wall Street rose on Friday following a report on U.S. economic growth which met expectations and on hopes for further stimulus from the Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank.

U.S. economic growth slowed, as expected, in the second quarter as consumers spent at their most sluggish pace in a year. The figure was better than investors' worse fears but still weak enough to potentially push the Fed closer to pumping more money into the economy.

"The Fed's concern and mandate is employment. Annualized GDP growth at 1.5 percent cannot begin to mend the unemployment picture," said Joseph Trevisani, chief market strategist at Worldwide markets in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke and other policymakers "will have all the rationale they need to open the liquidity spigot."

Stocks leapt nearly 2 percent on Thursday, erasing much of the losses for the week, as ECB chief Mario Draghi said he would do whatever it takes to save the euro. That followed a story in the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, which was seen as heralding a new round of stimulus from the Fed.

Facebook Inc shares tumbled 14 percent, hitting an all time low of $23.02 after it reported a drastic slowdown in revenue growth on Thursday and failed to offer financial forecasts that quelled fears about its ability to boost advertising growth.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.dji> gained 182.40 points, or 1.44 percent, to 12,858.45. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.spx> added 16.36 points, or 1.22 percent, to 1,354.25. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.ixic> added 46.66 points, or 1.63 percent, to 2,900.90.

Merck & Co was the top boost to the Dow after it reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings despite the negative impact of the stronger dollar, with strong sales growth of its vaccines and treatments for diabetes and HIV. The shares rose 2.7 percent to $44.44.

Optimism over further stimulus measures has helped offset a mixed U.S. corporate earnings season, with many companies beating profit forecasts but often missing revenue projections and warning about sluggish global growth.

As of Thursday, about half of S&P 500 companies have reported earnings. Of those, about two thirds have beat profit forecasts. Three in five, however, have missed Wall Street's revenue projections, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Starbucks Corp cut its outlook for the current quarter, citing global economic weakness and a recent slowdown in visits in the United States, its biggest market for sales and profits, sending shares tumbling more than 10 percent to $46.85.

Gross domestic product expanded at a 1.5 percent annual rate between April and June, the weakest pace of growth since the third quarter of 2011, the Commerce Department said on Friday. (Reporting by Edward Krudy; Editing by Kenneth Barry)


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Friday, July 27, 2012

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Where Lawyers and the Internet Meet: You ... - Traverse Legal, PLC

The internet is a very complicated place. There are web hosting companies, affiliate marketers. There are e-commerce agreements, clickwrap agreements. There?s social media defamation. There is any number of issues surrounding the DNS system, the Domain Name Server system. There?s ICANN which is the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. There?s the registration of domain names which are controlled by registries and are sold through registrars to registrants.

There are subpoena issues in terms of what kind of digital information can you get from internet service providers or ISPs. If you have to identify anonymous people on the internet there?s a whole piece of technology which a lawyer or an attorney has to understand, even to know where to go.

Welcome to Internet Law Radio where we discuss the hottest topics in Internet law.? If you are facing an Internet law issue, cyber law complaint, web site or e-commerce issue, we have an Internet lawyer ready to help.

The internet is a very complicated place.? There are web hosting companies, affiliate marketers. There are e-commerce agreements, clickwrap agreements. There?s social media defamation.? There is any number of issues surrounding the DNS system, the Domain Name Server system.? There?s ICANN which is the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers.? There?s the registration of domain names which are controlled by registries and are sold through registrars to registrants.

There are subpoena issues in terms of what kind of digital information can you get from internet service providers or ISPs. If you have to identify anonymous people on the internet there?s a whole piece of technology which a lawyer or an attorney has to understand, even to know where to go.

My name is Internet Law Attorney Enrico Shaefer, and today we?re going to be talking a little bit about this merger between technology and the law.? There used to be, back before the internet, loosely defined technology attorneys, attorneys who understood about software and networks and hardware, and understood enough to be able to lend their legal expertise to clients who existed in those spaces.

But you know what?? The world has changed.? It?s a whole different place, and there?s a lot of business being done on the internet.? The primary calling card for every business is their website, which is a website on a domain name which consumers, and partners, and web visitors go to in order to see who you are and what you do.

So, these assets are incredibly important to virtually every business today. If you?ve got an issue, which somehow deals with your website, your domain name, or with the internet itself, you?re going to need an attorney who not only understands the area of law involved, but perhaps even more importantly understands how the internet works.? A lawyer who does not understand the back-end technology of the internet isn?t going to be able to accomplish results for you as the client.

Attorneys and lawyers today, many of them actually use the internet, right?? They use email.? They get the same spam messages that you do, and they worry about anti-spam laws. But do they really understand how different aspects of the internet and the World Wide Web actually work? The answer is a resoundingly ?no?.? Very few of the older, more experienced lawyers have any experience in internet and technology representation.

So, the most important thing that you need to understand as a client when taking a look at law firms and interviewing attorneys in order to understand who?s going to be able to help you with your internet-based client, with your internet-based problem, is that you need to ask both sides of the equation.? You need to ask your attorneys and your prospective lawyers who you?re taking a look at to hire, not only what the legal issue is, but what is going to have to happen on the technology side in order to accomplish a result?

So, let me give you a couple of examples.? Let?s say that you are a small business or start-up company that is trying to secure a domain name that matches your trademark.? So, there are a number of landing pages out there on domain names which are a good match for your trademark and no one appears to be using those web pages. So, a common question you might have is, ?Well, if I go ahead and register my trademark, can I then go get that domain name??

Well, there are special statues and policies and arbitrations which exist in order to resolve trademark and domain name disputes.? You?re going to need a lawyer who not only understands the law, but understands how the domain name system works, how the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy works, and identify for you your options of securing an unused or a lander page domain name that is going to be the one you?re going to want to launch your business on.

Let?s say you?re a small business or internet start-up company and you?re looking for a lawyer, because someone has defamed you on the internet. Let?s say you?ve been in business for about four years now and you?re growing, but one of your competitors has posted a bogus customer review, alleging that you provide poor customer service and that you didn?t honor your warranties.

Well, if that is posted on a third-party website you need an attorney who not only understands defamation law, but understands how web hosts and website operators work, and what their typical policies are with regards to removing third-party user-generated content that?s alleged to be defamation.

Let me give you another example.? Let?s say you?re a nice little e-commerce business doing say $10 million worth of revenue a year and you?ve been growing very quickly. You?re selling ceiling fans online through a variety of different domain names and websites that your company has built over time.

You do all your original artwork and so all of the different graphics and photographs displaying the different ceiling fans that you have on your website are copyright-owned by you and your company. But your competitors or others start using those original pieces of artwork, those original photographs by your company to display product on eBay, on Amazon, on, on other e-commerce sites.

What are your options as a potential copyright owner to have those web pages removed, those accounts blocked by eBay and other vendors and potentially to have the photographs taken down? You?re going to need, not only a copyright law attorney to help you out, but that copyright law attorney is going to have to understand the internet and online space. Otherwise, they will not have any idea what results are achievable and who you can assert leverage against with regards to copyright infringement.

Again, there are special statutes which deal with online copyright infringement and user-generated content.? So, these are the types of things that any good technology and internet lawyer will be able to help you with.

So, when you go out and you list all your requirements on Google and you get those search returns and you find an attorney who you think is going to be good, make sure you take a look at what their technology and internet background is in addition to the substantive area of law that may apply to your specific situation. My name is Internet Law Attorney Enrico Shaefer. We?ll see you next time.

You?ve been listening to Internet Law Radio.? Whether you are facing a domain name, intellectual property or a complex litigation issue, we have an Internet law attorney ready to answer your questions.


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White Sox?sweep Twins

Associated Press Sports

updated 6:08 p.m. ET July 25, 2012

CHICAGO (AP) - Dayan Viciedo showed his resiliency, and so did the Chicago White Sox.

Viciedo homered and drove in four runs to make up for some defensive miscues, and the White Sox beat Minnesota 8-2 Wednesday for a three-game sweep of the last-place Twins.

Viciedo hit a two-run single in the second inning and added a two-run homer in the fourth, finishing with three hits. Alex Rios also homered for the White Sox, who have won 10 of their last 11 home games.

"You get that feeling back," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "It's one thing to go through a tough stretch and start winning games again, expecting that. Part of this three-game series, you get back, the guys swinging the bats pretty good and guys pitching fairly well."

Jake Peavy (8-7) allowed two runs - one earned - and six hits in six innings with six strikeouts and two walks. Chicago went into Wednesday night atop the AL Central with a half-game lead Detroit, which swept the White Sox over the weekend.

"These three games we just played good team baseball," Peavy said. "It's nice to come back after the road trip we had. We had a short homestand, but we played well, got back on track."

Kevin Youkilis left the game in the fourth inning due to a sprained left ankle. He rolled it rounding first on an RBI single in the third and was lifted for a pinch hitter.

Youkilis called the move "precautionary" and said he will be ready to play Friday at Texas.

Nick Blackburn (4-6) gave up a season-high eight runs and 10 hits in 4 1-3 innings as the Twins fell a season-worst 18 games below .500. Minnesota went 2 for 12 with runners in scoring position, stranded nine runners and lost to the White Sox for the 15th time in their last 19 meetings.

"Just a terrible series by us," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "But a very good series by the other team. They whacked it, and they pounded us - scored a lot of runs, and we got dominated here."

Peavy got into a bases-loaded jam with no outs in the first, but allowed only one run. Josh Willingham grounded into a double play, and Justin Morneau grounded out.

Viciedo misplayed Joe Mauer's fly ball to left leading off the fourth for an error, Willingham walked and Mauer scored on Morneau's double. But with runners on second and third, Peavy struck out Ryan Doumit, Brian Dozier and Alexi Casilla.

Viciedo's miscue snapped a 109-game errorless streak. It was his first error since moving to the outfield from third base in 2011.

"You work hard at (defense) and you figure at some point (an error) might happen," Viciedo said through a translator. "Unfortunately for me, today was that day. Just go out there and keep practicing so it doesn't happen again."

The 23-year-old Cuban responded with his 16th homer of the season in the bottom half, a 409-foot, two-run drive over the center-field wall for a 6-2 lead.

"What he's doing offensively as far as his approach, you can tell by the way he's hitting the ball, just the velocity coming off the bat that he feels pretty good at the plate," Ventura said.

Viciedo got into more trouble in the fifth when he failed to catch Denard Span's one-out line drive - ruled a double. Viciedo tumbled forward, bending his left wrist as he fell to the ground.

Ventura and a White Sox trainer came out to check on Viciedo, who recovered to make a nice retreating catch on Mauer's fly ball and strand Span at second.

Rios' two-run homer in the fifth chased Blackburn, who allowed eight earned runs for the first time since Sept. 28, 2010, at Kansas City.

Span had two doubles for Minnesota. Morneau's double in the fourth was the 250th of his career.

NOTES: White Sox C A.J. Pierzynski (mild right oblique strain) sat out for the second consecutive game. Ventura expects Pierzynski to return Friday. "He could play, but we don't want him to re-injure it and be out for any longer than he has to be," Ventura said. ... Twins 3B Trevor Plouffe (bruised right thumb) missed his fifth straight game. Gardenhire said a trip to the 15-day DL is possible if Plouffe doesn't improve by Friday's series opener against Cleveland. ... Scott Diamond (8-4, 3.16 ERA) will pitch the series opener for the Twins against the Indians' Josh Tomlin (5-7, 5.34). ... Chris Sale (11-3, 2.37) starts for Chicago against Yu Darvish (11-6, 3.88) at Texas on Friday.

? 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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Marlins fans deserve a lot better

HBT: Jeff Loria gets a sweetheart stadium, gets fans' hopes up, then in 3 months sells off much of the team, including Hanley Ramirez to the Dodgers. Why even root for this team?


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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Samsung Galaxy Nexus (Unlocked)

Finally, an unlocked smartphone we can get excited about. The Samsung Galaxy Nexus ($349 direct from Google) is tempting to begin with, since you can use any AT&T or T-Mobile SIM card, even prepaid or monthly ones, plus it will work overseas. And the price is very low for an unlocked phone, which typically costs $500 to $600, leading us to believe Google is subsidizing it somehow. But the Galaxy Nexus ?is also in the unique position of being the only phone running Android 4.1 "Jelly Bean" (Free, 4.5 stars) right now, and it's the only?phone you can buy that's guaranteed to get quick Android OS updates. As such, even though some other phones now beat it on pure hardware specs, the unlocked Galaxy Nexus is our Editors' Choice for unlocked smartphones.

Design and Screen
Measuring 5.33 by 2.67 by 0.35 inches (HWD) and weighing 4.76 ounces, the Galaxy Nexus is constructed of all dark gray plastic with the exception of the glass screen. The textured back panel is pleasantly grippy, although it's also hard plastic and not a soft-touch material. The phone isn't particularly eye-catching, but it's finely crafted nonetheless, and the unlocked version is a shade thinner than the CDMA model, which is welcome. The left side holds a volume rocker switch, while the right side houses the Power button and the three-dot docking connector.

The 4.65-inch Super AMOLED screen offers full 720p (1,280-by-720-pixel) resolution. Fonts look exceedingly sharp and crisp. Colors are vibrant, and you get deep blacks. But solid whites looks like pale gray. And like older AMOLED screens, the lowest brightness setting is still pretty bright, which is an issue when using the phone in a dark room. Used within its limits, though, it's still a beautiful screen, but the state of the art has moved forward a bit.?Typing on the screen in both portrait and landscape mode is a pleasure. There's plenty of room to work with, and Jelly Bean's improved predictive text puts it on an even keel with iOS 5.1.?

Connectivity and Voice Quality
The unlocked Galaxy Nexus is a quad-band EDGE (850/900/1800/1900 MHz) and quintuple band HSPA+ 21 (850/900/1700/1900/2100 MHz) device with 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi. It supports HSPA+ 21 speeds on both AT&T and T-Mobile networks here and overseas. It works with regular mini-SIMs (not micro); I tested the Nexus with an AT&T SIM, which worked perfectly.?Inside there's NFC, a gyroscope and compass, and a barometer in addition to the typical accelerometer and proximity and light sensors.

Unfortunately, you're not going to see the same data speeds with this phone as you would with an LTE or even HSPA+ 42 device?and frankly, we've seen HSPA+ 21 devices that test faster than they do here. In a series of tests, the unlocked Galaxy Nexus with an AT&T SIM averaged just 800Kbps to 1200Kbps down, and roughly 100 to 130Kbps up, with 230ms ping times, thanks to a combination of spotty reception quality and the slower data radio. That's decidedly 3G, even when testing outside in midtown Manhattan. We'll chalk it up to a bad test day for AT&T, but even with clear sailing you'd be hard pressed to top 3Mbps down.

Voice calls sounded great, though. Callers sounded clear in the earpiece, with plenty of volume, and transmissions through the microphone were crisp and detailed. I heard a good amount of street noise through the mic, but my voice always cut through loud and clear above it.?Calls sounded fine through a Jawbone Era Bluetooth headset ($129, 4 stars). Voice dialing worked perfectly over Bluetooth using Android's stock voice dialer, which you can also trigger from a headset. The speakerphone is pretty weak, both for calls and alert sounds; I barely heard the alarm when I tested it, and it was set to maximum volume. The 1750mAh battery is slightly smaller than what you get with the CDMA versions; we're testing battery life and will update this review as soon as we have a result.


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Speedy Broadband Services Outpace the Internet | in the loop

July 25th, 2012 Posted in News

Over the past five years, Daniel Sofer has signed up for every boost in Internet speed offered by Verizon Communications Inc., his home service provider.

But when he got Verizon?s newest high-speed service, it was ?the first time I?m not feeling that thrill of exhilaration when I connect,? said Sofer, a photographer and website designer in Hermosa Beach, Calif. The problem: The extra speed made no difference.

In the highly competitive cable market, broadband speed is a major selling point for Verizon and broadband rivals like Comcast Corp.?s Xfinity service. Carriers frequently boost the broadband speeds they offer in their relentless pursuit of new subscribers. But while the extra speed can pay off for households with multiple users, it can be overkill for many consumers.

FiOS Quantum, the ultra-swift broadband service that Verizon launched in June, offers Internet download speeds of up to 300 million bits per second for a price of up to $209.99 a month. The company says that?s fast enough to download a high-definition Hollywood movie in about two minutes. ?That?s like driving a Porsche or a Ferrari,? said Roger Entner, an Internet analyst for Recon Analytics LLC in Dedham. ?You know it can go really fast. But does it really make a difference in the real world? No.?

The problem is that most of the Internet isn?t transmitting data fast enough to take advantage of such rapid broadband speeds, Entner said. If a server computer transmits an Internet video at, say, 20 million bits per second, having a 300-million-bits-a-second connection won?t make any difference. ?The website you are connecting to is the bottleneck,? he said.

The Federal Communications Commission, responding to reports that the United States lags behind other major countries in Internet speed, is also encouraging cable providers to introduce superfast broadband services, Entner said. ?At least we can quote it in our studies .?.?. and say, ?Hurrah, the US has the fastest Internet,??? he said. ?It?s actually a game of bragging rights.?

Verizon officials were unavailable for comment, although a spokesman said Quantum will be available to most of the 5 million people who use FiOS Internet service in Massachusetts, 13 other states, and the District of Columbia.

Catherine Avgiris, executive vice president and general manager of communication and data services at rival Internet provider Comcast, said her company?s premium online offerings are mainly intended for homes where multiple family members engage in heavy Internet use.

?The average household has a laptop, has a gaming system, they have a tablet,? said Avgiris. ?The more devices there are in the home, the better performance you get by having greater speed.?

Avgiris wouldn?t say how many customers sign up for Comcast?s Xfinity fastest broadband service, which tops out at 105 million bits per second. But she did say that about a quarter of Comcast?s 18.6 million Internet subscribers choose speeds of 25, 50, or 105 megabits. Most subscribers choose speeds of three, six, or 20 megabits. At about the same time Verizon announced FiOS Quantum, Comcast said that 30-megabit subscribers would get a free speed increase to 50 megabits, while existing 50-megabit users would be bumped up to 105 megabits, at no extra charge.

Avgiris said Comcast?s data network is quite capable of matching FiOS Quantum?s 300-megabit speed, adding that the Xfinity system delivered data at 1 billion bits per second in a demonstration in Chicago last year. But she said that for now, there?s no sign that consumers are interested in such massive bandwidth. ?I?m not sure there?s a market today for one gigabit,? she said. ?In five years, 10 years, who knows??

Even skeptics like Entner predict that consumers will eventually need superfast Internet connections. For example, TV companies are beginning to develop ?4K? technology, a new video standard that would make TV images far sharper than today?s high-definition sets. Streaming 4K programs over the Internet would require a big speed boost, and could lead to surging demand for snappier connections.

But for most consumers today, the fastest Internet services are solutions to a nonexistent problem. ?It?s one of those nice things where technology has progressed faster than our need for it,? said Entner.

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Godwin?s Law (Theagitator)

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Bats, a reservoir of resurgent viruses

ScienceDaily (July 24, 2012) ? Measles, mumps, pneumonia, influenza and encephalitis in man, Carr?'s disease in dogs, Ovine Rinderpest (PPR)? all of these diseases are caused by viruses from the same family: Paramyxoviridae. A vast international study(1), carried out in collaboration with IRD researchers and published in Nature Communications has led to the discovery of more than 60 new species of these dangerous infectious agents, almost double the number previously recorded. This family of highly diverse pathogens affects all animals, from canines to fowl, cattle and humans. As a result, it is not always easy to determine which host is responsible for these viruses. Thanks to testing carried across the globe, the research team has recently discovered their source: bats.

All indices agree

Virologists have collected over 10,000 animal samples, including more than 90 Chiroptera(2) species from Africa, Latin America, Asia and Europe. As a result of blood and organ analysis, researchers have observed a large genetic diversity of paramyxoviruses in these small mammals. This suggests that these infectious agents have had enough time to evolve in bats over the course of history. They have thus been present for a very long time in this order of animals. In addition, scientists have found them in all known species of bat worldwide. This planetary spread signifies that it is the result of movement from continent to continent from a common ancestor and that these flying hosts have been carriers for millennia. Lastly, biologists have found nearly all genera from the paramyxovirus in bats, which has not been the case with any other animal. Such viral representation confirms that they are at the origin of all infection across the animal kingdom. To provide the final proof, researchers investigated the probability that each order -- bats, rodents, birds, humans, canines or bovines -- could be the source of contamination. Using paramyxovirus phylogeny -- the family tree, so to speak -, the probability of transfer is highest from bats to other animals.

The threat is still hovering

Researchers have also made a worrying discovery. Chiroptera might also be a reservoir of certain paramyxoviruses that were thought to be specific to humans. Scientists have found evidence among these small animals of paramyxoviruses that are genetically very similar to those observed in man and which could cause infection in humans once again. Childhood diseases such as measles or mumps, which the WHO considers as having been practically eradicated, in developed countries at least, could re-emerge. Any eradication hypothesis(3) requires all animal reservoirs to be eliminated.

Continents on the brink

Another worrying finding from the study is that certain highly dangerous viruses have been discovered in regions of the world where they were thought to be absent. This is the case for the Hendra and Nipah viruses, two emerging pathogens which have recently been the cause of fatal encephalitis(4) epidemics in Asia and Australia. No other cases have been detected in the world until now. And yet, researchers have found the viruses in the organs of African bats. In Gabon and Ghana, where the study has focused, two infectious agents seem to be highly present, which raises fears for possible emergence on the African continent.

Bats are already recognised as carrying diseases such as Ebola and rabies, notorious for devastating outbreaks, although these are rare and geographically contained. We are now learning that they are reservoirs of a multitude of infections that affect humans and animals worldwide. All epidemiological study on paramyxoviruses should now take into account the ecological data available for these airborne animals.

Notes :

(1) This research has been carried out in collaboration with the universities of Bonn, Hanover, Marburg, Cologne and Ulm, the Noctalis centre, the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, the Charit? Medical School and the Institute for Novel and Emerging Infectious Diseases in Germany, CIRMF in Gabon, the Czech Republic Academy of Sciences, Strandja national park in Bulgaria, Kumasi University in Ghana, Lubumbashi Univesity in DRC, Bahia University in Brazil and Stellenbosch University in South Africa, Chumakov Institute of Poliomyelitis and Viral Encephalitides in Russia, the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama, KCCR in Ghana, the Institut Pasteur in Bangui, Central African Republic, the Netherlands Center for Infectious Disease Control, the Mus?um National d'Histoire Naturelle and the CNRS.

(2) Bats belong to the order Chiroptera.

(3) The WHO announced a new strategic plan in April 2012 aiming to eliminate measles in at least six WHO Regions by 2020.

(4)Encephalitis is a swelling of the brain

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Note: Materials may be edited for content and length. For further information, please contact the source cited above.

Journal Reference:

  1. Jan Felix Drexler, Victor Max Corman, Marcel Alexander M?ller, Gael Darren Maganga, Peter Vallo, Tabea Binger, Florian Gloza-Rausch, Andrea Rasche, Stoian Yordanov, Antje Seebens, Samuel Oppong, Yaw Adu Sarkodie, C?lestin Pongombo, Alexander N. Lukashev, Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit, Andreas St?cker, Aroldo Jos? Borges Carneiro, Stephanie Erbar, Andrea Maisner, Florian Fronhoffs, Reinhard Buettner, Elisabeth K.V. Kalko, Thomas Kruppa, Carlos Roberto Franke, Ren? Kallies, Emmanuel R.N. Yandoko, Georg Herrler, Chantal Reusken, Alexandre Hassanin, Detlev H. Kr?ger, Sonja Matthee, Rainer G. Ulrich, Eric M. Leroy, Christian Drosten. Bats host major mammalian paramyxoviruses. Nature Communications, 2012; 3: 796 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms1796

Note: If no author is given, the source is cited instead.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of ScienceDaily or its staff.


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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Real Estate Investing: 4 Underestimated Rental ... - CT Homes LLC

This is an incredible time for investing in real estate and locking into passive income and long term wealth building by acquiring rental properties. However, while cash flow spreads may be fatter than ever and we appear to be on the verge of an extended period of equity growth it is those sneaky, unexpected expenses which catch investors out every time.

So when investing in real estate through rental homes what are some of the most common expenses that investors often overlook?

1. Exterior Maintenance

You may have budgeted for cutting the grass or plan to make the tenants responsible for it but exterior maintenance doesn?t end there. You might not care what your properties look like if you aren?t living there but the city or homeowners association will. That means hefty fines and penalties if not maintained to code. Other items you need to plan on forking out for include pressure washing and painting.

2. Appliances

So many investors forget to plan for big expenses like appliances. They are so consumed with just getting the deal closed and collecting the rent money that when appliances go bad it can come as a big and nasty surprise right at the wrong moment. These are one of the items which a reserve account should be set aside for and contributed to monthly. Some real estate investing pros have found investing in a home warranty plan the best move.

3. Re-Leasing

Despite the best screening in the world things happen and tenants leave, sometimes a lot sooner than planned. This brings additional expenses including repairs and redecorating as well as marketing and sometimes commissions too.

4. Professional Property Management

Regardless of if you want to try your hand at managing your own rental properties at some point you are going to want to hire a property manager. Otherwise you?ll never truly have a day off or be able to enjoy your real estate investing profits. Give DIY property management a try if you like, it will be a great learning experience but make sure you have budgeted enough room to hire someone else later on.

Tags: expenses, property expenses, rental


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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Using Hypnosis To Change Habits | The Secret & the Law of Attraction

Human beings have frequently been creatures of habits and just a few of them are great for you. However you can rectify plenty of your nasty habits and replace them with good ones thru hypnosis or hypnotherapy.

There are several private incessant addictions and habit defects like over reacting, over eating, smoking, obsessive compulsive rituals, bruxism, tongue thrusting, skin picking, trichotillomania, fingernail chewing and thumb sucking or time wasting that've been successfully corrected and replaced by hypnosis.

How Hypnosis Corrects Bad Habits

An example will help you to understand how hypnosis works in this example. Many of us have a horrible habit of snacking and adding on calories while watching TV and customarily these people are fat. Sometimes these folks are so habituated to snacking in front of the Television that they aren't even consciously mindful of their actions. It is generally one factor that triggers another and finally leads to the degeneration of your health.

Other examples that you can easily identify with are a gasper and a mug of coffee or a glass of aerated sweet drink and fries along with your office lunch. Professional trained experts use hypnosis to reprogram their patient?s inner PC and free them from their old cycle of bad incessant patterns. Unhealthy, harmful habits are also replaced thru hypnosis and substituted with good ones.

Hypnotic Strategies and Tools for Overcoming Bad Habits

A number of these tools and methodologies include (but are not restricted to) positive self empowerment ideas, negative self talk redirection, mindfulness, positive memory revival, negative trigger numbing, inner child work, led imagery, interactive self confidence building, resource state discovery, habit replacement visualisation, post hypnotic suggestion, progressive relaxation, deep diaphragmatic targeted respiring and cognitive investigation.

Hypnotherapy for Correcting Unacceptable Habits

Every patient is unique and so are his requirements. Thus mental health execs have to create customized hypnotherapeutic treatment plans for their different patients. But some elements are found across all hypnotherapeutic treatment plans which are listed below.

First off, the psychological health professional has to identify the causes and triggers of unpleasant habits as well as underlying issues, issues and needs. Then he has to look into the case study and negative results and come up with a positive replacement behaviour.

He will be able to then set initial goals for the patient the latter must concentrate on. The hypnotist will also create a proper hypnotherapeutic methodology for his patient making use of special methods and tools already noted above. Then he will offer habit correction hypnosis and track the patient?s progress. It usually takes at least 3 sessions to note any perceivable improvement in the patient. If it's necessary, the hypnotist will again set new goals for the patient to work on.

He'll also revise his strategy and implement it for the patient?s welfare. And this cycle will continue until the patient is successfully able to break his old unpleasant habits and form new good habits. Hypnosis is furthermore used to strengthen and consolidate new good habits that replace the bad ones.

Rick Smith Hypnotherapist in London with mindrelease hypnosis london. We use Hypnosis techniques to help Ontario correct habits.


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The Bad Guys: Apocalypse Pharmaka (Part 2) - Rune Soup

Magnificent. By

Did you know that garlic can cure food poisoning?


In fact, it is more than 100 times more effective than antibiotics commonly used to treat one of food poisoning?s leading causes.

Kinda wish I knew this in New Zealand when I lived there because, at the time, it had the highest rate of salmonella poisoning in the first world.

My estimate is that I was food poisoned once every three months. The garlic hack woulda been good to have.

Do you have some suspicions as to why I didn?t know it?

One evening in Micronesia, while drinking duty free gin on the balcony after a day spent making a terrible documentary about Nan Madol, my psychiatrist father told me something interesting about the medical business. The numbers may change but the journey remains the same:

It takes about half a billion to bring a drug from its natural state in the rainforest, through testing, through governmental approval, through clinical trials and out onto the market. That investment must be made back up in the five years that the drug is under patent because after that all profitability is eroded by the appearance of off-brand alternatives.

The nicest way of describing this would be to say that a company has to spend five years healing the rich before its lifesaving treatments can be of any use to the rest of us. A more accurate way may be to simply ask for directions to the nearest socialist party office and I?m terribly sorry but do you happen to have a spare guillotine?

I would hang these in my house if I was sure they wouldn?t give me nightmares.

Because, unfortunately, it is not just a matter of bringing new medications onto the market.

What if some existing medications prevent lung damage from cigarette smoke?

Do you think they have the funding to sponsor medical events and take large hospital buyers and successful oncologists out to expensive dinners?

And what if a near-universal cancer vaccine was developed? One that couldn?t be patented.

Do you think every medical facility in the world would work around the clock to test, synthesise and distribute this product?

Or rather would you expect a flimsy take-down piece that gets upset over the fact that whoever wrote the press release doesn?t have a detailed understanding of cell biology? There is a huge difference between an absence of clinical trials and flat-out lying, but this Archon-shill doesn?t appear to give a shit. Guess no one in his family has cancer at the moment, huh?

Thing is? someone in my family does/did. At the beginning of last year, my father was actually diagnosed with (colon) cancer. It was caught early so it was small, it was surgically removed and the follow-ups have been fine so far.

He does, however, drink mate tea every day now because it appears to?kill colon cancer. Let?s be clear here? he?s the orthodoxy?s orthdoxy. Not to get all Tom Cruise at you (because I?m out of the closet) but he?s a?psychiatrist. That?s totally the archonic equivalent of the inquisition.

And yet he didn?t wait for the thumbs up from some asshole crying about a press release to begin using a health product mankind has been using for centuries. He?s not paying a drug company for a pill derived from a compound in the mate plant because that doesn?t exist yet. He?s drinking the frikking tea.?


The whole point of apocalypse pharmaka is that we no longer (only) have to listen to plant spirits to guide us toward treatment. We can instantly summon from any corner of the planet the latest understanding of treatments for our afflictions. We don?t necessarily need to act on it but we should still be summoning up the options. The only thing stopping us is fear.

But cancer is scarier than a fear of transgressing ?the way things are done?. So my father is going to keep drinking the tea.

And here?s a cancer hack for you right now:

If you are over 35, you should think about taking a daily dose of aspirin.

Sometimes I think I will see this if I look up when I?m walking through central London on my way to work.

Daily aspirin is considered a ?no brainer? by doctors who aren?t in Big Pharma?s pockets.

The only response that ?cautious doctors? (check their backgrounds) have is that aspirin, over a very long period of time, can increase the likelihood of internal bleeding in patients with pre-existing conditions.

But if you?re over 35, what are you more likely to die of? So split the difference and pop those pills.

For the first time in human history we have the access to knowledge to more easily make these decisions for ourselves. Which is good because Big Pharma is fucking out of control. Overmedication is what?s killing us:

?So many people have died from medication overdoses of late that they come to exceed car crashes as the US?s top cause of accidental death ? a first since the government started tabulating such data in 1979, according to the LA Times. This equates to ?more deaths than heroin and cocaine combined?.

And aspirin is a medication in the same way that two eggs are a cake. It?s basically one step above willow tree bark tea. I may change my opinion of this should gas-filled aspirin become widely available because it it thousands of times more effective. But again, you can?t patent it so, basically, if you live anywhere that isn?t Sweden then don?t hold your breath.

Our current drug policy is more damaging than Bush II?s moronic stance on stem cells. The food we are eating is causing autism in our kids. Evil men are determining your country?s health policy and it is time you personally limited their influence on how you choose to live your life.

Speaking of? It?s the food thing I want to leave you with for two reasons.

The first is that if you are reading this within a few days of when it is posted then I will be stuffing my goddamn face in Paris again (death by croissants!) lest I give you the impression I am coming off as preachy.

The second reason is that food where we are going with the next post in the series. But between now and then you have some homework. You have to watch the recent BBC programme,?The Men Who Made Us Fat. As a proud, card-carrying BBC license-fee payer, consider this my gift to you.

If you ever wanted to put names to the men who destroyed the health of the entire first world then watch it.

[Disclaimer: This blog mentions ghosts, wizards, aliens, Atlantis, spells and fortune telling. If you consider any of that to constitute medical advice then you need to have a good, long look at how you are living your life.]


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Monday, July 23, 2012

Cities where homes cost less than a car

Stan Honda / AFP - Getty Images

Wheels or digs? For the price of a Chrysler 300, a person could buy a house in Flint, Mich.

By Rusty Weston, 24/7 Wall St.

For many Americans, homeownership is the epitome of living the American dream. Yet, in towns with high tumbling home prices and double-digit vacancy rates, median-priced homes now cost the equivalent of new American cars -- except, as investments go, they?re slightly more risky.

24/7 Wall St.: The fastest growing cities in America

Call it the dark side of the American dream. But if you can only afford to buy just one, which would you choose? In hard-hit cities, why own a home when you can rent one without the risk of foreclosure if your job falls through? Or, for about the same money, you can sport new wheels, facing only the risk of repossession -- a lesser credit report complication than a foreclosure. While a car is unlikely to increase in value, its depreciation is both more manageable and predictable than a home.

?Buying a home in most places is risky,? says Jed Kolko, chief economist and head of analytics at real estate site?Trulia. These high-risks in towns such as Detroit or Youngstown, Ohio, have helped depress housing prices. And until the labor market improves there?s no real chance of a strong recovery in housing. ?Towns with a history of job losses probably won?t see big price gains, especially if they have high vacancy rates, because it means buyers have a lot of homes to choose from,? says Kolko.

This quandary is especially meaningful to residents of Motor City, who have experienced deepening levels of housing hell in recent years. Much has been written about Detroit?s high misery index, and the challenges of thriving in a city with high unemployment, high crime rates, and city services under severe budgetary constraints. And yet, for those willing to take a long view of the city, Detroit also offers amazing bargains to residents dedicated to living in that community.

Despite its problems, even in Detroit, it?s not unusual for multiple buyers to vie for an appealing home in a nice neighborhood. The city has one of the highest rental vacancy rates in America and boasts a four-month supply of homes on the market, according to a recent?report?in the Detroit Free Press. A buyer?s market is typically six or more months? supply.

Many residents of depressed cities in Michigan, Florida, Indiana and Ohio have been slammed by job losses and tumbling housing prices, too, and recovery is coming slowly if at all. Yet, on the positive side, these towns also offer a low cost of living by American standards that make for attractive buy-side opportunities for those willing to take a long view of homeownership.

24/7 Wall St. asked Trulia, a leading provider of real estate listings and market data, to identify and rank cities by the median prices of homes sold last year. Trulia limited the list to markets with an adequate supply of non-foreclosure, single-family homes, which ruled markets that may have unusual spikes in median sales prices. To provide further context of how economic data can impact local housing market conditions we also gathered median-income data as well as Q1 2012 vacancy rates from the U.S. Census Bureau, unemployment numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and June 2012 foreclosure figures from RealtyTrac.

24/7 Wall St.: Countries where people work least

With home prices at 30-year lows and mortgages available at record-low rates, some residents in troubled cities will be tempted to take the plunge and buy a home. Yet, amid this fledgling recovery there?s still the allure of plunking down a small deposit and buying a car that can take you to a city that offers a healthier housing market and stronger long-term job prospects.

These are the cities where homes cost less than a car:

1. Detroit

  • ?Median listing price:?$21,000
  • ?Comparably priced car:?Chevy Malibu ($21,000)
  • ?Housing price change (year over year):?5.2 percent
  • ?Median household income:?$29,447
  • ?Unemployment:?9.9 percent

Detroit?s leaders are committed to reducing spending and creating a more livable and prosperous city for families and businesses of all sizes. The local automotive economy is improving, especially as Chrysler stages a comeback from its near-death experience. Some may interpret a year-over-year housing price increase as a positive sign for Detroit?s future. But unkind economists might call it a dead-cat bounce. Unemployment is not merely high, population is decreasing, and in 2010, one-in-five homes were vacant. Long term, that?s a lot of downward pressure on housing prices.

2. Flint, Mich.

  • ?Median listing price:?$31,950
  • ?Comparably priced car:?Chrysler 300 ($31,950)
  • ?Housing price change (year over year):?n/a
  • ?Median household income:?$28,835
  • ?Unemployment:?8.9 percent

According to Trulia?s Kolko, both Flint and Detroit experienced significant housing-price declines, not because of overbuilding as in Florida but because of ?long-term job decline coupled with declining populations.? Worse, Flint suffers from a significant amount of poverty with about 44 percent of the population earning less than $25,000 a year, according to Census economic data.

24/7 Wall St.: The most dangerous cities in America

3. Gary, Ind.

  • ?Median listing price: $39,900
  • ?Comparably priced car: Ford Expedition ($39,900)
  • ?Housing price change (year over year): - 7.5 percent
  • ?Median household income: $27,367
  • ?Unemployment: 8.5 percent

In Gary, as in most other troubled housing markets, employment or rather the lack of opportunities holds the key to its housing recovery. The current high unemployment rate is not a blip unfortunately -- Gary has 3 percent fewer jobs than it did a decade ago, according to Trulia. Much of the local population lives at some of the nation?s lowest income levels as 46.5 percent earn under $25,000 annually according to Census economic data. Such data suggest that local businesses may have trouble leading the city of recession.

4. Redford, Mich.

  • ?Median listing price:?$40,000
  • ?Comparably priced car:?Ford F-450 ($55,000)
  • ?Housing price change (year over year):?5.2 percent
  • ?Median household income:?$52,573
  • ?Unemployment:?9.9 percent

Redford is not a large city, but it suffers from problems such as 1-in-159 homes in foreclosure, the worst rate among cities on this list. It also has aging homes, most of which were built just after World War II and may be expensive to maintain. Like Warren, prices have dropped by 38.5 percent from their peak according to FHFA data. On the bright side, at $52,573 the average annual income in Redford is higher than in many of its neighboring cities on this list.

5. Warren, Mich.

  • ?Median listing price:?$49,900
  • ?Comparably priced car:?Lincoln Navigator ($59,900)
  • ?Housing price change (year over year):?6.5 percent
  • ?Median household income:?$46,247
  • ?Unemployment:?9.9 percent

Chief among several promising housing trends for Warren is a surprisingly low homeowner vacancy rate, which suggests that the town has seen fewer foreclosures than many other cities in Michigan. Still, sales prices have dropped 35 percent over the past five years in Warren, says Trulia, which suggests that quite a few homeowners are underwater and perhaps holding onto their properties until things turn around.

Click here to read the rest of 24/7 Wall St.'s Cities where homes cost less than a car


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If You Need a Dedicated Watch Safe, You Probably Won't Mind This One's $88,000 Price Tag [Overkill]

Designed to complement the design of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's famous Barcelona chair, D?ttling's new Liberty Barcelona Watch Safe is targeted at those who can afford the finer things in life. Like $5,000 chairs, and $88,000 safes designed to only hold timepieces. More »


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Teaching jobs in NJ ? Article Directory Site

Teaching jobs in NJ are becoming difficult to find. Recent college graduates and even seasoned teachers are finding it hard to find permanent positions in the various state school districts. Cost cuts in school budgets is a major factor in the shortage of teaching jobs in NJ.

Many people are looking at their available options in finding teaching jobs in NJ. Accepting positions in the school system outside of teaching such as janitorial or cafeteria services, allows the prospective teacher a better chance of exposure to the hiring system at their local school. This is no guarantee that they will be hired to that coveted teaching position.

Many others are looking at starting their own business because of the uncertainties in the job market today. There are several options available to the would-be entrepreneur. One is to start a traditional brick and mortar business. This option usually requires large upfront cash investments. A newer option is the untraditional internet home-based business with a broad spectrum of choices from multi-level marketing to digital product sales. This usually requires substantially less cash up front and can become very lucrative on a part-time basis.

Regardless of which option is chosen by people looking for teaching jobs in NJ, a thorough understanding of what?s involved and costs associated with that choice is essential as well as strong commitment to the project once a decision to go forward has been made.


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Sunday, July 22, 2012

What to Do If My Computer is Slow | Information Technology ...

The \?my computer is slow\? resentment is experienced by many and it\?s a widespread issue that needs to be addressed. Stuff to revive computer agility should be given due attention.

Foremost that should be given close scrutiny is the PC registry. Because it is loaded with database all about the PC assembly, the Operating System must keep an eye on the diverse configurations of the various installed hardware. If they don\?t match, then there is a problem. Windows has unique requirements that use unique machine configurations.

As pointed out, the problem may lie in the PC registry. The glitches may be seen early on but they tend to become more complex as time progresses. A scan and repair of the registry can be found from the internet to promptly halt the inert responses observed. The scan and repair tool is a freeware. Generally, more powerful tools, the ones that have to be bought, can only submit the errors found; but the total scan is the first step to help decide whether to make the purchase or not.

Installed applications deplete the computer memory. Thinking twice then before downloading or installing applications is best precaution. Some of them are just ornaments that bear no real value. It may well be a good tip to resolve the \?my computer is slow\?complaint.

Some installed programs may have to go if not used. They can easily be removed through your \?Add or Remove\? feature from the Control Panel. When automatic start up is enabled in certain programs, they run together with the system in reboot. The startup programs use memory and CPU time. Consider the following on how to disable the automatic startup.

Startup programs can be deleted by pressing the Start task bar, then All Programs and look for Startup in the rolled up list. Just Right-click it then press Delete. Another way of doing this is again to click the Start then Run, and type \?msconfig\?. Wait until a window comes out, and then choose Startup from the indexes. The checked items are programs that run alongside the system upon rebooting. Click the Disable button then Apply, but if unsure if you\?re disabling the right item, it is better to leave it as is.

There are on-line disk defragmenters that effectively optimize the file system. Find the best freeware software that can do the job. They accelerate the computer by compressing files together. Some not only raise the PC performance but also repair computer errors.

Heat and dust factors affect the computer\?s performance. Fans are built-in in computer encasements. They keep the machine cool down from long hours of use. The computer case can easily be opened; the dust can be wiped-off through the use of a simple paint brush.

To sum it up, excellent technology that diagnoses and put the computer on stable status is the best solution to the \?my computer is slow\? problem. They can be had for free from the internet. They contour the computer registry minus the high priced hardware upgrades.

Author Bio: Looking for a free registry repair? You can make your computer run 300% faster by fixing your corrupt registry. Go to to receive your free download and learn exactly why your computer is running slow

Category: Computers and Technology
Keywords: startup programs,computer agility,revive computer agility,revive computer


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