first_imgMV Allegoria, a Post-Panamax containership operated by Hapag-Lloyd, has suffered a main engine problem off Freeport, the company informed.The 5,527 TEU vessel is currently at anchor in Freeport for repairs, which are expected to be finalized early next year.Subsequently, MV Allegoria is scheduled to continue its voyage from Miami on May 30, 2018, according to the company.The 2006-built ship is deployed in the company’s Mediterranean Gulf Express (MGX) service connecting America with the Mediterranean.“We have re-assigned vessel positions in the service and updated the MGX schedule to ensure again a weekly sailing frequency,” Hapag-Lloyd said.last_img read more

first_imgNEW Delhi, India (AFP) – A hotel worker whose unsolicited advice helped the batting of cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar has been located after the Indian superstar launched an appeal.The worker approached Tendulkar about 19 years ago at the hotel where he worked in Chennai, saying he had noticed he swung his bat differently when he was wearing an arm guard.Tendulkar, who was midway his record-breaking career at the time, said the advice was valuable as he redesigned his arm guard and went from strength to strength.“I don’t think I had spoken about this to anyone in the world. I was the only person who was aware of that,” he said in a video posted on Twitter.“After that I actually came back to the room from the ground, carried my elbow guard and I re-designed my elbow guard according to the correct size and the amount of padding and I played.”The hotel said it had found the worker and offered to set up a meeting, while an Indian news website also said it had located the man.“I asked him (Tendulkar) if I can give him a suggestion concerning cricket,” the worker, identified as a member of the security staff named Guruprasad, was quoted as saying by the ‘The News Minute’.“I really wasn’t sure if he would listen to someone like me but he readily agreed.”The meeting apparently took place in early 2001 during the Test series against Australia, when Tendulkar scored 126 in the first innings in Chennai.The 46-year-old Tendulkar retired in 2013 after scoring more than 34 000 runs in Tests and one-day internationals, including a record 100 centuries.last_img read more

first_imgSCOTTSDALE, Ariz.–San Francisco Giants CEO Larry Baer will take a leave of absence beginning immediately.Baer, 61, was involved in a public altercation with his wife Pam, 59, in San Francisco on Friday.The Giants board of directors issued a statement Monday announcing that Baer has requested to take time away from the organization.“The Board of Directors of San Francisco Baseball Associates is closely monitoring the matter involving Giants President and CEO Larry Baer.  Pursuant to League …last_img read more

first_imgA team of Chinese scientists analyzed protein interactions in yeast cells, and titled their paper in PNAS1 “The yeast cell-cycle network is robustly designed.”  They “demonstrated that the cell-cycle network is extremely stable and robust for its function,” and “able to survive perturbations.”  The beginning of the paper expresses the wonder the stimulated their research:Despite the complex environment in and outside of the cell, various cellular functions are carried out reliably by the underlying biomolecular networks.  How is the stability of a cell state achieved?  How can a biological pathway take the cell from one state to another reliably?  Evolution must have played a crucial role in the selection of the architectures of these networks for them to have such a remarkable property.After analyzing the stable states, “big attractors” and checkpoints in the yeast cell cycle, the scientists remind us that this network is part of an even bigger marvel:Note that the network we studied … is only a skeleton of a larger cell-cycle network with many “redundant” components and interactions…. Thus, we expect the complete network to be even more stable against perturbations.    … Furthermore, our results suggest that not only do biological states correspond to big fixed points but the biological pathways are also robust.    Functional robustness has been found in other biological networks, e.g., in the chemotaxis of E. coli (in the response to external stimuli) and in the gene network setting up the segment polarity in insects development (with respect to parameter changes) .  It has also been found at the single molecular level, in the mutational and thermodynamic stability of proteins.  In some sense, biological systems have to be robust to function in complex (and very noisy) environments.And now to the climax.  In the closing statement, after claiming several times that these networks are “robustly designed” (their term), they suggest that all this complexity, all this robustness, all this control and regulation is the product of time, chance and contingency.  In fact, the very robustness might even help evolution make it better:More robust could also mean more evolvable, and thus more likely to survive; a robust “module” is easier to be modified, adapted, added-on, and combined with others for new functions and new environments.  Indeed, robustness may provide us with a handle to understand the profound driving force of evolution.1Fangting Li, Tao Long, Ying Lu, Qi Ouyang, and Chao Tang, “The yeast cell-cycle network is robustly designed,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 10.1073/pnas.0305937101, published online before print March 22, 2004.Congratulations to the winners of this week’s Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week.  Bravo.  Now call the schizophrenia ward.    They may actually have a point.  In the church, Christians are more likely to survive, and are easier to be modified, augmented, adapted and combined with others for new functions and new environments in the body of Christ if they are more “evolvable” (malleable) in God’s hand.  Strength can be perfected in weakness, but only by intelligent design.(Visited 10 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Though folks in the ag media have been expressing outrage concerning the questionable marketing practices from fast food giant Chipotle for years, the restaurant chain’s misleading tactics have seemingly gone unnoticed (and have even been celebrated) by most everyone else. That changed in April, though, when Chipotle announced that it was removing all foods containing genetically modified ingredients from its menu — the first major restaurant chain to do this.Since the announcement, the formerly beloved burritos have been blasted around the country on the air, on the Internet and in newsprint. A flood of information came out about the incredible hypocrisy of Chipotle’s “food with integrity” campaign that disregards an overwhelming scientific consensus, basic, well-founded nutritional facts, honesty, and common sense. The menu’s high caloric content, lofty sodium levels and sugary sweet beverages have well-known, scientifically proven ill effects if consumed in quantity, yet the restaurant chain claims that it offers a healthy eating choice because it is removing genetically modified ingredients from the menu. GMOs have no proven health effects whatsoever after billions of meals safely consumed. Chipotle has also faced criticism for not really going GMO-free by continuing to serve soft drinks with corn syrup made with GMO corn and meat from livestock fed GMO corn.Agricultural organizations, of course, also had plenty to say about the announcement. American Soybean Association (ASA) president Wade Cowan, a farmer from Brownfield, Texas, pointed out the continuing frustration with the misinformation about agricultural biotechnology.“Farmers are no strangers to the heated discussion of GMOs and biotechnology. We recognize that there are passionate viewpoints on both sides, and we respectfully disagree with those who choose to dispute the scientific consensus on the safety of these agricultural innovations. What is different about Chipotle’s announcement this week is that it smacks of a willful subversion of science, all in the name of selling burritos,” Cowan said. “Chipotle contends that more study is needed on GMOs, even though they are among the most studied and tested food products in the world, and have been since their introduction almost 20 years ago — all without a single incidence of harm to humans, plants or animals. Think about that for a minute: a planet’s worth of meals over two decades means literally trillions of servings without one adverse occurrence. Chipotle, however, bypasses the overwhelming scientific consensus and places long-debunked safety concerns first and foremost in its new effort. For this, the restaurant has been taken to task by viewpoints ranging from the Center for Science in the Public Interest to media outlets like National Public Radio and the Washington Post — voices that certainly couldn’t be mistaken as ‘shills’ for big agriculture.“We might suggest a better approach: abandon the scare tactics and join us in our effort to provide clarity to this conversation. Soybean farmers are ready and willing to come to the table and help consumers find out more about what we do and why we use these products. Just like soybean farmers, Chipotle and indeed all links in the farm-to-fork supply chain have a huge opportunity to help Americans discover more about their food. This comes, however, with the responsibility to do so in an ethical and honest manner.”The tactics at Chipotle, though aggravating, are but a miniscule part of the ongoing onslaught of marketing efforts that seek to promote products and ideologies by tearing others down using information not based upon reality. These tactics have been taking place for years, and not just in the realm of restaurants. I have long been frustrated when small, specialty farmers (most notably organic) feel the need to promote their products at the expense of others. Why? If your product is high quality and raised in the way that you feel best, it should be able to stand upon its own merits and not be marketed at the expense of other types of agricultural production.I have no problems with organic food production (or Chipotle’s menu for that matter). Organic production is an excellent and viable way to produce and market food to meet a clear demand that the farm owner sees as the best way to run a productive and economically viable farm business. My concern lies with the all-too-common attacks on other forms of agriculture for the sake of marketing.For this reason, I was very glad to recently talk with Kurt Bench — a very hard working almost-organic farmer dedicated to his craft and methods of agricultural production. He had this to say in the interview:“We are all farmers. Why can’t we all just get along and help each other out? There are so few of us out there anymore we shouldn’t be arguing. We are all farmers in the end who are producing food. Arguing about how to do things doesn’t get us any further ahead. There is a spot for everyone out there and we have found our niche.”Ahhhhh — this is so refreshing. Make no mistake, Bench does have clear opinions on the reasons he farms the way he does, and they are different from many of the larger farms around him. He does not seem to think, though, that his way is the only way, just the best way for his family on his farm. In our conversation, and previous conversations I have had with him, there was no underlying hate, no criticism of “Big Ag” as a part of the farm’s marketing plan and no “my way is superior to yours because of …” He allows his farm practices and products to simply showcase themselves.Chipotle (and probably most of us) can learn something from this sentiment.last_img read more

first_imgAthletes of African descent are back in focus at the middle and long distance events in the London Olympics and people are once again scratching their heads as to how they keep replicating these efforts.In this edition of the Olympics itself, there are some outstanding names which catch your attention as Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba became the first woman in history to retain the Olympic women’s 10,000 m race title.Add to it Somali-born British athlete Mo Farah, winning gold in the men’s 10,000 m, Ethiopia’s Tiki Gelana finishing the cross-line in women’s marathon and Kenya’s Ezekiel Kemboi triumphing in the men’s 3000 m steeplechase, the list is huge.Scientists have attempted various studies to find out what is it about these athletes who come from poor countries where they do not get proper food to eat and still run the gruelling events so well.Someone like Michael Johnson says it is not a secret at all. “You can’t buy into the clichs about what makes an athlete successful. Certainly genealogy plays a part in it. It doesn’t mean that if you are of African descent that you are going to dominate sprints and those who aren’t won’t,” feels Johnson.Almost nine years ago, some Australian scientists had come up with a study that black sprinters have a gene called ACTN3 which is involved in fast muscle twitching.Their belief was this gene helps the muscles to run fast and was more common in Jamaicans and those of West African origin.If one flips through the annals of athletics history, the turning point for the Kenyans was the 1968 Mexico Olympics when Kenyan icon Kipchoge Keino, won a gold medal in 1,500 metres. He then went on to add a silver medal in the 5,000 metres race.advertisementFrom then till his day, the Kenyans have made news in the distance events around the globe. There has been intense speculation as well as research as to what makes them such strong runners.In economically rich countries, you will find that even the common man or woman keeps running to lose weight and fat.But if you look at the Kenyans, Ethiopians and the Somali athletes, they look almost emaciated. Yet, when you put them in a middle distance race or a half marathon or a full marathon, they just cruise along.There is no panting, no gasping for breath and their cardio systems seem designed for sheer running.It has also been researched that most of the Kenyan runners come from one small ethnic group — the Nandi sub-tribe.”Out of the last 25 Boston Marathons, Kenyans have won 19 of them. This year Wilson Kipsang won the London marathon, ensuring that out of the last nine London marathons, eight have been won by Kenyans,” said an official from the international athletics federation (IAAF).Several former Kenyan greats have always been enthused and from Kipkoech to Kipchoge Keino have said that the Kenyan success is a natural phenomenon.The Kenyan and Somali athletes have no distractions in life. Over here, running is something as natural as having to walk many kilometres in a hilly areas in India to fetch drinking water.Yes, these athletes are lean and with a low body fat percentage as studies have shown. But the catch is in their natural leg length, better calf muscles and training naturally at high altitude.If you take the case of the Indian middle distance runner, with KT Irfan now a hero after finishing 10th in the 10km walk, they have to set up a high altitude base in Ooty and train.However, for the Kenyan stars and someone like Mo Farah who comes from Somali land, running is a way of life.Unlike the economically rich countries, where children aspire to play football, tennis or other elite sport, they can only run.Running never paid but now it does. In fact, Mo Farah is called a “plastic” athlete as he changed passports.It’s a phenomenon which has been in existence for decades and that is why you will find Black athletes migrating to Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries.They give up their nationalities and in return get a better quality of life.It is well known that given the political turmoil in Somalia, people are leaving the country. And with American universities hunting for talent and recruiting athletes for their universities, the exposure which these African athletes get is huge.In addition to the natural flair for running and having an athletic body, more competitions make them sharper.advertisementWhile countries like India have also started sending the middle distance athletes to Kenya for training in high altitude, the natural advantage which a Kenyan or an Ethiopian runner has cannot be discounted.One also cannot forget the advantage of running bare feet as these Africans do in hilly terrain. And that’s why runners like Wilson Kipketer changed nationality and ran with great distinction for Denmark.Similarly, Ethiopian-born 800m and 1500 m specialist Maryam Yusuf Jamal, originally named ZenebechTola, now represents Bahrain.As of now, none can stop the economically stronger nations from importing natural talent and making them “plastic athletes” for winning medals.Mo Farah also belongs to this category as he makes headlines daily in Britain and Somalis watch helplessly.last_img read more

first_imgBeijing, Aug 28 (PTI) China is drafting a tough law to ban the use of the national anthem at “improper” private occasions by introducing criminal prosecution for violators, according to a media report today.The draft legislation was given a second reading at the bimonthly session of the National Peoples Congress (NPC) Standing Committee, the top legislative body, which opened today.Lawmakers have backed the proposal to ban the anthem at funerals and other “improper” private occasions, in commercial advertisements or as background music at public places, state-run news agency Xinhua reported.The violators, including those who maliciously modify the lyrics, will face criminal prosecution or up to 15 days detention, the report said.The song will only be allowed at formal political gatherings, including the opening and closing of NPC sessions, constitutional oath ceremonies, flag raising ceremonies, major celebrations, award ceremonies, commemorations, national memorial day events, important diplomatic occasions, major sport events and other proper occasions, it said.Despite the restrictions, the legislation encourages people to sing the anthem on proper occasions to express patriotism.The law states that the song should be included in textbooks for students at primary and secondary schools. PTI KJ AKJ KJlast_img read more