US rule the World

first_imgPHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania:Jamaica had to play second fiddle to the United States in the Nike USA versus The World events on yesterday’s final day of competition at the 2016 Penn Relays.Jamaica’s only success came in the men’s 4×100 metres, where they took advantage of a big mistake by a strong USA Red team to win the event in 39.70 seconds. Jermaine Hamilton, Julian Forte, Rasheed Dwyer and Oshane Bailey were the members of the winning Jamaica quartet. USA Blue placed second in 39.02, with third going to St Kitts in 39.49. The USA Red team included the likes of Justin Gatlin, Tyson Gay and Mike Rodgers.Jamaica were second in three women’s relays the 4x100m in 42.90, 4x200m in 1:31.34, and 4×400 m in 3:29.00. The Americans won five of six relays contested.- R.Glast_img read more

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Fate of Ontario safe injection overdose prevention sites in limbo

first_imgTORONTO – The fate of Ontario’s safe injection and overdose prevention sites is in limbo as the province’s new Progressive Conservative government weighs whether to continue funding the facilities authorized by its Liberal predecessors.Health Minister Christine Elliott said Tuesday the government is reviewing evidence on the sites to see if they “have merit” and are worth continuing.“We need to take a look at the evidence and understand what the experts are saying, so I want to hear that. The premier wants to hear that. He wants to know that continuing with the sites is going to be of benefit to the people of Ontario,” she said.“That’s what we’ve promised to do in everything since we’ve been elected, is making sure that programs that we’re investing in have value, and this is no different.”The province will make a decision in the coming weeks on some of the sites that need their funding and approval renewed in order to stay open, including an overdose prevention site in London, Ont., the minister said. It will also eventually rule on the program as a whole, she said.“We’re going to be looking at all of the sites, and we’re going to be making a decision based on the evidence relating to the individual sites as well as the situation overall,” she said.Overdose prevention sites are temporary facilities approved by the province to address an immediate need in a community, while supervised consumption sites — also known as safe consumption or injection sites — are more permanent locations approved by the federal government after a more extensive application process.During the spring election campaign, Premier Doug Ford said he was opposed to safe injection and overdose prevention sites, though his party says Ford has since committed to reviewing evidence on the issue.Critics and advocates said shutting down the sites would be a major step back in fighting the opioid crisis that health officials say claimed nearly 4,000 lives across Canada last year.“To put it bluntly, we’ll have a lot more dead people,” said Nick Boyce, director of the Ontario HIV & Substance Use Training Program.There is overwhelming evidence from experts and from other jurisdictions around the world that supervised consumption sites save lives and help people dealing with addiction connect with other types of support when they are ready, he said.That sentiment was echoed by the opposition parties, who questioned the need for the review.The New Democrats said keeping the sites open would not only save lives, but also relieve pressure on local hospitals.The Liberals, who approved the overdose prevention sites, said experts had already been consulted on the issue.“I don’t know why they need to consult more experts, it’s all there,” Liberal interim leader John Fraser said. “It just comes back to the same theme with this government — there was no plan during the election, and there’s no plan right now, for those things that are important to families.”last_img read more

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Askcom Buys Recommendation Engine nRelate

first_imgAsk.com, the question-and-answer search and expert service, bought recommendation engine nRelate this week. The deal, says Ask.com CEO Doug Leeds, is a big bet on the growing importance of content recommendation features. The acquisition reflects the changing landscape of search, in that it may still be the primary way for a user to find content, but other methods—namely social referrals and content recommendation engines—are becoming increasingly influential. According to Leeds and nRelate CEO Neil Mody, the deal will integrate Ask.com’s search technology into nRelate’s recommendation platform to better serve up automated content suggestions related to the particular article a visitor is viewing. “We were looking to expand our business into areas where we can leverage the technology we built and get a part of the third leg of what’s going on in the Internet,” says Leeds. “The way the people navigate the Internet these days is search, it’s the oldest method of content discovery and has remained so until two new phenomenons came along—social, which is the second leg, and then the ability for publishers to recommend the content you’re going to read next.”nRelate currently services about 35,000 publisher sites and, says Mody, serves up about 1 billion impressions each month. “With the Ask technology built in we’re looking to improve the types of links we provide on an algorithmic basis and then, over time, explore some ideas that can increase our suite of products for publishers,” he says. At this point, Mody says nRelate is monetizing some of its customer sites better than AdSense. “We’re not doing that across the board, but for us that’s a great market validation. We’re getting a 6 percent clickthrough rate. About one in every 16 views on a page clicks on our unit. There’s really nothing else that gets that kind of CTR on a page.”Ask.com, which attracts about 65 million unique visitors each month, is one of about 50 digital brands belonging to IAC, which also counts Newsweek/The Daily Beast, College Humor, Dictionary.com and a variety of singles sites like Match.com among its portfolio. First-quarter revenues for IAC were $640 million, up 39 percent from the same period in 2011, according to company financials. Net income for the quarter was $34.5 million, up 91 percent.Terms of the deal were not disclosed and financials aren’t broken out for individual brands, but IAC’s search segment accounted for $343 million in revenue for the quarter.last_img read more

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Neetu Chandra requests Boney Kapoor to cast her in Ajiths next film

first_imgNeetu Chandra wants to work with Ajith Kumar.PR HandoutBoney Kapoor recently expressed his wish to make a film with Ajith in Bollywood. The producer had claimed that he had three scripts ready for the South Indian star. And now, an actress has thrown her hat in the ring to play the female lead if at all the project ever happens.Responding to Boney Kapoor’s tweet, Neetu Chandra, who acted in Tamil films like Yavarum Nalam, Yuddham Sei and Aadhi Baghavan, said that Ajith is her favourite hero. She added that she has requested the producer to convince the actor, whom fans fondly call Thala. She tweeted: “I would love to be a part of Actor Superstar #Ajith s action movie. He has always been my favourite action actor. Please convince him soon! That’s will be a blessing to Hindi cinema. Great Luck @BoneyKapoor ji . [sic]”Prior to Neetu Chandra, Boney Kapoor had hailed Ajith’s performance in Nerkonda Paarvai after watching the rushes of the upcoming flick. He posted: “Saw the rushes of #NerkondaPaaravai. Happy… What a performance by Ajith…. I hope he agrees to do Hindi films soon. Have 3 action scripts, hope he says yes to atleast one of them. #NerkondaPaaravai #Ajithkumar. [sic]”Ajith had earlier worked in a negative character in Shah Rukh Khan’s ambitious Bollywood film Asoka, directed by Santosh Sivan.Currently, Boney Kapoor and Ajith have decided to work on Nerkonda Paarvai and another project which will begin later this year. Both the films are directed by H Vinoth of Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru fame.last_img read more

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Infosys invests in Stellaris Venture Partners

first_imgSecond largest software services firm Infosys Ltd will invest Rs 31.6 crore from its Innovation Fund in India-based early-stage venture fund Stellaris Venture Partners, which has invested in companies like BigBasket and erstwhile TaxiForSure.The company in a regulatory filing to Bombay Stock Exchange said, “Infosys has signed a definitive agreement to invest of Rs 31.6 crore from its Innovation Fund in Stellaris Venture Partners, an India-based early stage venture fund.” The investment is likely to be completed by December 15, 2016.According to the IT bellwether, this venture fund eyes backing entrepreneurs building applications for global businesses, domestic small and medium enterprises and consumers in financial services, retail, healthcare and education sectors.”Stellaris’ investment team has significant experience working in global technology companies and a strong track record in venture capital, with investments made in companies such as TaxisForSure and Bigbasket to name a few,” the company said.Commenting on the development, Executive Vice President and Global Head of Corporate Development and Ventures at Infosys, Ritika Suri said, “With this investment, we look forward to gaining early access to innovative new companies in India that are inventing the future of enterprises globally.”Co-founder of Stellaris, Alok Goyal said this association will help both the VC fund and its portfolio companies.With changing landscape, domestic IT companies are betting big on new age technologies to have a first mover advantage over competitors. From buying out niche tech firms to investing in such companies through venture capital funds are part of such initiatives.In past, Infosys had invested in Silicon Valley based early-stage venture capital firm Vertex Ventures from its $500 million Innovation Fund in December, 2015.last_img read more

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Jaitley promises additional capital for PSU banks

first_imgFinance Minister Arun Jaitley on Friday promised more capital infusion into public sector banks, saying there’s “merit” in their demand for more funds over and above what was provided in the Budget. “Banks have made a strong case for additional capital…And over the next few months, this is something the government is going to seriously look at,” Jaitley said after meeting heads of PSU banks here.“…I do believe it’s a case which has merit (attention).” The government has earmarked Rs 7,940 crore in the Budget for recapitalisation of PSU banks for the current fiscal. The statement assumes significance as RBI Deputy Governor S S Mundra had yesterday said the Budget amount marked for recapitalisation of PSU banks is not adequate and RBI has asked the Finance Ministry to raise the quantum of assistance in view of mounting bad loans and support growth. On additional quantum to be infused, Jaitley said “it’s only after discussions within the government and looking at our own abilities on the matter that your question can be answered”. Last fiscal, the government infused Rs 6,990 crore in nine public sector banks based on their performance. Also Read – I-T issues 17-point checklist to trace unaccounted DeMO cashWhen asked why banks are not opting for the market route to raise capital, the Minister said banks do so taking into account the market conditions and stability. “They (banks) are free to take decision (on tapping the market) at an opportune time,” he added. On bad loans, Jaitley said although NPAs (non-performing assets) came down in the fourth quarter, it’ll take a while before a comfort level is reached.“In the quarter ended March 2015, NPAs had come down from 5.64 per cent to 5.2 per cent. One quarter does not indicate a pattern. So, I would wait for some more time before realising what the pattern is,” he said. Banks’ assessment is that it will take them 2-3 quarters “to reach a somewhat greater comfort level”, he said, adding that they themselves are going to make an effort to reduce NPAs. “We did ask each of the banks that have higher NPA levels to explain the reasons and those groups where defaults were higher,” he said. On stalled projects, the Finance Minister said there is a lot of concern in this regard and many have started. “Therefore, we decided that even though in Cabinet Secretariat an effort is being made, the Prime Minister himself has taken a series of meetings. The DFS Secretary purely from the banking point of view, will prepare a list of those projects which are stalled on account of reasons of finance,” Jaitley said. Also Read – Lanka launches ambitious tourism programme to woo Indian tourists‘Loans to small businesses may double to `Rs 1 trillion’ The loans to small business sector may double to Rs one lakh crore in the current fiscal, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said on Friday. He also expressed concern over low participation of the private banks in the government-promoted schemes, especially the recently launched social security programmes.“Since the small and micro business sector has diverse needs, credit products should be customised to suit their requirements so that the unfunded are effectively funded,” Jaitley said during his meeting with PSU Bank heads here.The Minister said that 2015-16 should see a doubling of the loans to the small business sector from Rs 50,000 crore (during 2014-15) to Rs one lakh crore in the current fiscal.last_img read more

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