31 Jul

Government plans for a huge expansion of personal

first_imgGovernment plans for a huge expansion of personal health budgets could help to deliver independent living for disabled people, according to a leading disabled peer.Baroness [Jane] Campbell (pictured), who has been receiving a personal health budget herself for more than a year, said the plans also had “huge potential” for “getting to grips” with the integration of health and social care support.But the government’s plans faced determined opposition from other disabled campaigners this week, with many concerned that they could be part of a planned creeping privatisation of the NHS.They were speaking after the government launched a consultation on the plans to expand the legal right for people to have choice and control over their healthcare through personal health budgets (PHBs).One mental health activist said the plans were about “offloading us to the private sector”, and said she feared that funds would only be made available “as a temporary sweetener” until privatisation of the NHS was complete, when they would be withdrawn.PHBs give individuals a pot of money to spend on their health and wellbeing needs, in agreement with a healthcare professional.Some areas of NHS care will not be covered by a PHB, including GP services, unplanned hospital admissions, drugs and operations.  Currently, only about 23,000 people receive a PHB, but reports suggest that ministers want to increase this to about 350,000.The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) says the plans would allow individuals “to control and tailor their own health and care, based on their own individual needs, in a manner that abides by the constitutional values of healthcare being free at the point of delivery, based on clinical need, not on ability to pay”.The consultation stresses that PHBs would remain optional.The government is suggesting expansion could focus on five groups who have an ongoing need for NHS services: those with continuing social care needs; those with ongoing mental health needs; people leaving the armed services; people who are autistic or have learning difficulties; and people who access NHS wheelchair services.At present, only those in receipt of NHS continuing healthcare – and children and young people receiving continuing care – have a legal right to a PHB.But the government also wants to give more people the right to combine their PHBs and social care personal budgets into a single integrated budget – so they will only need a single assessment of all their needs – and potentially add other funding streams, such as disabled facilities grants.It also proposes giving some service-users the right to receive their PHB through direct payments, which would enable them to take a cash payment to manage and pay for their own support.But many disabled activists fear the plans are only the next step in a move towards privatising the NHS.Professor Peter Beresford, co-chair of Shaping Our Lives, said: “Everyone who loves the NHS should fear the government’s determination to extend personal health budgets massively.”He said PHBs were “the antithesis of the NHS founding principles of universality and needs-led provision”, particularly as the government had based PHBs on the same “failing” model used with social care personal budgets.Under personal budgets, service-users are given an upfront allocation of funding, but that often bears no correlation to what is actually available for the service-user to spend on their support.Beresford believes the same will happen with PHBs.And he warned that “further encroachment of the NHS into social care is no way to bring about integration of health and social care.“The great bulk of spending through PHBs is on social care – PAs, home care, respite, leisure and social needs – with a smattering of spending on fringe or complementary health services that the mainstream NHS will not commission.“In effect, as a strategy to bring about integration, it will fail as it doesn’t grapple with the real problems of integrating clinical health and social care.”He said PHBs were also “morally highly questionable” because they will extend the “anomaly” with NHS Continuing Healthcare, where “some will get free social care via PHBs and the rest will have to pay for exactly the same service”.He said: “PHBs aren’t a gift horse; they are a Trojan horse for privatisation and the commodification of health.”Denise McKenna, co-founder of the Mental Health Resistance Network, said she also feared the plans were part of a long-term government strategy to privatise the NHS and move to an insurance-based system similar to the one that operates in the US.PHBs, she said, would allow the government to separate those service-users who would be “uninsurable” and unprofitable under an insurance-based system, including those with severe and enduring mental health conditions.She said: “I understand people with physical disabilities find PHBs excellent and it is really important to independent living that people are in control of their own lives.“My fear is not in the here and now. It is what is going to happen in the future, what their motives are and what it will lead to.“My fear is that it is a major step towards privatisation.”McKenna said her own experience was that it was “practically impossible” for people with mental health conditions to secure a social care personal budget.For those who were able to, she said, they were unable to benefit from the funding because the scheme was so badly run.Clenton Farquharson, chair of Think Local Act Personal – a national partnership committed to health and care personalisation and community-based support – and a consultant on equality and inclusion, welcomed the government’s plans.He said: “We know from our experience of personal budgets that when implemented well they enable choice, control and improve wellbeing.”He said he was not concerned by claims that the government’s plans were part of creeping privatisation of the NHS.He said: “Personal health budgets are motivated by an underlying principle to humanise a bureaucratic approach to supporting people with long term health and social care support.“They are also driven by a need to effectively integrate health and social care that will help minimise costly, confusing and unsustainable processes that, in my experience, has had a negative impact on my life.  “I am not aware of any evidence that suggests the further expansion of PHBs is changing existing practice whereby clinical commissioning groups commission a range of services from both the NHS, community sector and private providers.  “If done correctly, PHBs can benefit people by offering a choice of affordable, quality, person-centred care that can significantly improve citizens’ health and wellbeing.”Baroness Campbell, who has been working closely on the issue with James Sanderson, director of personalised care for NHS England, also dismissed concerns that expanding PHBs was “privatisation by the back door”.She said that expanding PHBs could “help deliver independent living more effectively, by extending disabled people’s choice and control over the support they require to stay well and less reliant on hospital care and other health interventions.“This is inevitably a more cost-effective approach to supporting well-being – a major principal of the Care Act.”The government plans to outline its next steps in this summer’s adult social care green paper.The PHB consultation closes on 8 June.last_img read more

31 Jul

SAINTS have announced their 19man Squad for Sunda

first_imgSAINTS have announced their 19-man Squad for Sunday’s trip to Bradford Bulls.Chris Flannery returns whilst Head Coach Royce Simmons has also named Paul Wellens and James Roby.Both will have to prove their fitness ahead of the clash and are still rated as doubtful.The squad is:1. Paul Wellens, 3. Michael Shenton, 4. Sia Soliola, 5. Francis Meli, 7. Kyle Eastmond, 8. Josh Perry, 9. James Roby, 10. James Graham, 11. Tony Puletua, 12. Jon Wilkin, 13. Chris Flannery, 14. Scott Moore, 15. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 19. Andrew Dixon, 20. Jonny Lomax, 21. Shaun Magennis, 22. Jamie Foster, 25. Lee Gaskell, 28. Thomas Makinson.Mick Potter, Bradford’s Head Coach, will choose from:1. Michael Platt, 5. Patrick Ah Van, 6. Brett Kearney, 7. Marc Herbert, 9. Heath L’Estrange, 10. Andy Lynch, 11. Olivier Elima, 12. Elliott Whitehead, 13. Jamie Langley, 14. Matt Diskin, 16. Craig Kopczak, 17. Ian Sibbit, 19. Gareth Raynor, 20. James Donaldson, 23. Tom Olbison, 24. Jason Crookes, 25. Shad Royston, 29. Tom Burgess, 33. Ben Jeffries.The match kicks off at 5.45pm and the referee is James Child.If you can’t make the match, it will be covered extensively in the Match Centre as well as on Saints’ Official Twitter and Facebook sites.Tickets for the match are still on sale at the Saints Superstore in St Helens Town Centre, by calling 01744 455 052 or by logging on to www.saintssuperstore.comStats:Summary:St Helens have won their last four Super League meetings with Bradford. The Bulls’ last win was 34-30 at Knowsley Road on 24 April, 2009.Bradford’s last home win against St Helens was 10-4 on 13 July, 2007 – the Bulls have lost the last three Odsal meetings with the Saints since then.Last ten meetings:St Helens 28 Bradford 16 (SLR7, 25/3/11)St Helens 60 Bradford 12 (SLR25, 13/8/10)Bradford 6 St Helens 38 (SLR2, 14/2/10)Bradford 18 St Helens 44 (SLR16, 21/6/09)St Helens 30 Bradford 34 (SLR10, 24/4/09)St Helens 58 Bradford 20 (SLR17, 13/6/08)Bradford 16 St Helens 22 (SLR3, 22/2/08)Bradford 14 St Helens 35 (CCSF, 28/7/07)Bradford 10 St Helens 4 (SLR20, 13/7/07)St Helens 34 Bradford 22 (SLR4, 2/3/07)Super League summary:Bradford won 20 (includes wins in 1999, 2002 and 2005 play-offs)St Helens won 24 (includes wins in 1999 and 2002 Grand Finals; 1998 play-offs)Bradford highest score: 64-24 (H, 2004) (Widest margin: 54-8, H, 2004)St Helens highest score: 66-4 (A, 2005) (also widest margin)last_img read more

31 Jul

THE RFL and Super League Europe Ltd have agreed

first_imgTHE RFL and Super League (Europe) Ltd have agreed a three-year contract with Rhino that will see the Somerset-based contact and training equipment company become the official ball supplier for all club matches until the end of the 2015 season.Rhino, who supplied the post protectors for Super League and RFL matches in 2012, have been the official supplier of training equipment to St Helens in recent years, as well as supplying teamwear to a number of Rugby League clubs.RFL Commercial Director James Mercer said he was delighted to welcome Rhino to the sport’s expanding stable of commercial partners.“I would like to congratulate Rhino on winning what was a very competitive commercial process to become the official ball supplier to Super League and the Championships,” said Mercer.“Rhino are an established brand in rugby union and we look forward to working with them over the next three years as they look to replicate that success in Rugby League.”Rhino Chief Executive Reg Clark commented: “This is an important breakthrough for Rhino and follows on from us being appointed official ball supplier to the British and Irish Lions for the second successive tour and to the RaboDirect PRO12 competition.“We are very excited about this partnership which gives us immediate contact and coverage of Rugby League clubs at all levels of the game – from community upwards.”Picture shows RFL Commercial Manager James Mercer and Rhino Rugby Chairman Andrew Moss signing the partnership agreement.last_img read more

31 Jul

CAPTAIN Paul Wellens is relishing what 2014 could

first_imgCAPTAIN Paul Wellens is relishing what 2014 could bring to the Saints – but warns his teammates they need to remain focused.The 33-year-old will enter his 17th season as a Saint and his fourth as team leader.“To captain this club is a fantastic honour and I don’t take the responsibility likely. This year in particular the squad looks to be the strongest we’ve had in a long time and with that my job as captain comes a huge responsibility that we maximise that potential.“We have the opportunity to do something special this year and we have to keep focussed and work hard for each other. Names on paper don’t win games; it’s about going out there and putting in the effort.“We have a strong squad and great players and now have to make that work for us.“The competition for places is as fierce as it has been for a long time and that is good for the squad going forward.”Wellens came off the bench in James Roby’s Testimonial, slotting in at dummy half.And although Saints lost 28-16, he believes there is a lot to look forward to.“I was disappointed with the result, even though it was a friendly,” he continued. “It was a good hit out and we came up against a strong side. We will be better off for the game but there are certainly a few areas we need to improve on. Rest assured we are working hard to fix those areas up.“There were plenty of positives too I thought. For his first game at seven I thought Luke Walsh showed what he is going to bring to the team. There was little bit of rustiness which is normal at this time of year, but we will be a much improved outfit for the Warrington game and the home opener.”Saints will kick off their Super League campaign with a trip to Warrington on Thursday February 13 before hosting Hull FC at Langtree Park eight days later.Tickets for those games are on sale from the Ticket Office at Langtree Park, by calling 01744 455 052 or by logging on here.last_img read more

31 Jul

Club Hospitality SAINTS TV

first_imgThe Totally Wicked Stadium is one of the newest purpose built Rugby League stadium in the country; situated within easy reach of the M6 and M62, and less than half an hour’s drive away from Liverpool & Manchester.Our modern facility, opened in February 2012 and has an 18,000 capacity with unique and versatile facilities. An ideal venue for meetings, conferences, training days, dinners, exhibitions, product launches and much more. The Stadium can host from 2 to 500 delegates and our choice of facilities range from small meeting rooms to larger suites with complimentary parking, Wi-Fi and stunning pitch side views.For more information on how you can hire out the Totally Wicked Stadium please visit https://www.totallywickedstadium.com/last_img read more

30 Jul

Huddle House submits plan for Carolina Beach restaurant

first_img According to the Huddle House website it will be one of more than 400 restaurants open or underdevelopment in the country.There is no word yet on when construction will begin or when the restaurant will open. CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) — More than a year after first announced, Carolina Beach is getting closer to having a Huddle House restaurant.According to the town’s weekly update, the company submitted plans for a restaurant at 109 Hamlet Avenue.- Advertisement – Related Article: Freeman Park closed as crews set up for beach nourishment projectlast_img read more

30 Jul

When will students have to makeup for the snow days

first_img Quattlebaum said they do not have a specific date at this time but should be announced sometime next week.We reached out to Pender, Columbus, Bladen and Brunswick counties schools and are waiting on their responses. NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Along with snow days and school cancellations come makeup days, but when and how will schools decide on those make up days if necessary?New Hanover County School’s PIO Valita Quattlebaum said in part, “The decision on whether we have to make up any of these days hasn’t been decided yet. The immediate focus will be on damage assessments from the storm and ensuring that we are ready to roll next week and all of our facilities are safe. The superintendent will consider make up days – if any are needed – along with other senior leaders and we will announce the decision once it is made.”- Advertisement – last_img read more

30 Jul

Wilmington golf course opens after sevenyear renovation

first_imgWILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A long awaited project is finally finished in Wilmington, and the city celebrated Thursday morning.Seven years after the city of Wilmington purchased inland greens golf course for $500,000 the golf course is once again open.- Advertisement – What was once an 18-hole par three course has been converted to a nine hole course with extensive drainage improvements.The other nine holes were transformed into a public park, complete with a walking trail, bocce courts, and more, for a grand total of $2.7 million. It was funded by the 2006 Parks Bond, City Capital Improvement Program and storm water funds.“We appreciate everybody’s patience with this project. But we really feel that we’re open now and we’re looking forward to everyone coming out,” said Wilmington Parks and Recreation Program Specialist Marian Doherty.Related Article: Proposed Wilmington treatment center raises concernsDoherty was excited to see the project finally finished.“I love to see the golfers come back, we’re standing here as some of the golfers are finishing up, and just hearing the feedback from them,” said Doherty.That feedback was overwhelmingly positive.“I love it, I love it. Just to be able to come out here for an hour and spend some time outside,” said Cameron Byers, who has been golfing since he was a kid.Byers is thrilled to have a nice course so close to home.“I actually had to hit the odometer just to see how close I was,” he said.Tyler Carter, who golfs for the First Tee of Wilmington, and hit the ceremonial first tee off with Mayor Bill Saffo, says it will be a great place to perfect his game.“I think it’s going to be a great place to come and practice, I mean, brand new, who wouldn’t want to come up here?”last_img read more

30 Jul

Chill out to some tunes at Port City Reggae Music and Art

first_img The full afternoon of reggae music includes Grammy-winning artists and more:Edge MichaelDanglin – former front man of The WailersSignal Fire – Wilmington reggaeOf Good Nature – Charlotte reggaeSons of Paradise – Raleigh reggaeDHIMOrganizers say it will be a fun event for the whole family, including kids, with a central focus of love and unity.Related Article: DMV express services available at the Azalea FestivalHere’s more information. WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — This weekend you can take your family and friends to jam out at the Port City Reggae Music and Art Festival.The fun starts Saturday, July 6 at noon and runs throughout the evening at Greenfield Lake Amphitheater.- Advertisement – last_img read more

30 Jul

Ancelotti full of praise for Ronaldo after Napoli defeat

first_img <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=a7617b59&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=128&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=a7617b59&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> Napoli’s coach Carlo Ancelotti praised Cristiano Ronaldo’s performance as Juventus beat his side 3-1 in Turin. The Portuguese star did not add to his three Serie A goals but provided two assists and poised a constant attacking threat.In the post-match press conference, Ancelotti stated: “He [Ronaldo] is always present in attack and as I said before he adds an extra value to Serie A. It’s a pleasure to watch him play in Italy.”Ancelotti coached Ronaldo for two seasons at Real Madrid and in 2014 the pair managed to win the 10th Champions League trophy in the club’s history.WhatsApp SharePrintlast_img read more

30 Jul

Twitter working on way to retrieve old tweets

first_imgAdvertisement But why would someone want all their tweets — possibly going all the way back to 2006, when Twitter was first launched?Facebook already lets you download a personal archive that includes a list of every message youve ever sent to someone, a list of every friend you have on the network, copies of any photos or videos you have ever uploaded to the site, and much more.I recently fetched mine and was surprised at the amount of data Ive shared — packaged up by Facebook into 46MB worth of files and folders — and I consider myself a light user.Now imagine data from Twitters 140 million users who are firing off 140-character tweets throughout the day, every day, whether about their own personal trivia, or their thoughts on current news as it unfolds. – Advertisement – In fact, Twitter has evolved into an important real-time news feed and communication tool. Consider, as examples, just a few events that have chalked up some of the highest tweets-per-second within the last year: Madonnas Super Bowl half time show (10,245 TPS), Tim Tebows overtime touchdown pass during the AFC wild-card playoff game on Jan. 8 (9,420 TPS) and the death of Steve Jobs (6,049 TPS).So the idea of a person being able to see perhaps tens of thousands of his thoughts over time, all in one place, is pretty compelling.For some people it would work out to be like a virtual diary and news chronicle all in one.Currently Twitter only gives users access to a certain number of their tweets and Costolo did not say when the company would release the personal export tool it is working on.In the meantime, if retrieving old posts is important to you, try SocialSafe.net, which backs up social networks, or CloudMagic, which is a lightning-fast way to search for things across Exchange, Twitter, Gmail, Google Apps, Chat, Docs, Calendar and Contacts.Another thing to note is the tool Twitter is developing will only be for users own tweets, not for digging through Twitters entire trove of posts.Its two different search problems, Costolo told the Times. Its a different way of architecting search, going through all tweets of all time. You cant just put three engineers on it.source: IT WORLDlast_img read more

30 Jul

BlackBerry Messenger coming to Android and iOS Can it compete with WhatsApp

first_imgAdvertisement BlackBerry has announced at its annual Live conference for developers that its popular BlackBerry Messenger aka BBM will soon be coming to Android and iOS. The company said that the apps would be free on the two platforms and that in the initial phase it would be supported on devices running iOS6, and Android 4.0 aka Ice-cream Sandwich and higher.The Android and iOS apps will allow users to have multi-person chats, and the ability to share photos and voice notes, and engage in BBM Groups, which allows BBM customers to create groups of up to 30 people.BlackBerry also announced the beta launch of BBM Channels, a new social engagement platform within BBM that will allow people to connect with the businesses, brands, celebrities and groups they are passionate about. The company hopes to BBM Channels option to to iOS and Android users as well, though of course it will depend on Apple’s App Store and Google Play Store’s approval. – Advertisement – BBM with BBM Channels is currently in beta for BlackBerry 10 smartphones, as well as BlackBerry smartphones running BlackBerry 5 OS through 7.1.BlackBerry has not given details of whether features like Video Calling and Screen share on BBM will be coming to BBM for Android and iOS. The fact that BBM is making an Android and iOS debut is obviously big news. BBM was the exclusive privilege of free messaging at a time when BlackBerry was the leader of smartphones. With the rise of the iPhone and Android devices, free messaging apps that can be used across mobile platforms have grown in popularity.The fact that BBM is now coming to Android and iOS is being seen as a decision that was inevitable, given that the mobile messaging has changed so drastically in the last two years. So who will be BBM’s biggest challengers? We take a quick look some important contenders which are available across platforms :WhatsApp: Recently the WhatsApp CEO had revealed that the app has more than 200 million monthly active users, which is more than Twitter. WhatsApp also generates an average of 8 billion inbound messages and 12 billion outbound messages per day, according to the CEO. In terms of sheer numbers WhatsApp is very, very big right now and its popularity is going to grow.Compare  this to BBM’s numbers which stand at 60 million monthly active customers. BlackBerry says that more than 51 million people are using BBM for an average of 90 minutes per day, and obviously by launching BBM on Android and iOS, they are hoping these numbers will grow.But WhatsApp is available on even the cheapest smartphones. Even the newly launched Nokia Asha 501 phone, which is a cheap device, and aimed at emerging markets like India, has WhatsApp. BBM is only coming on iOS6 and Android 4.0 thus limiting its scope as there are a lot of low-range Android smartphones which still run on Gingerbread.Facebook Messenger: Facebook generates an average of 10 billion messages per day. The Facebook Messenger app also has an option logging in via your phone number and without a Facebook account in countries such as India, South Africa, etc.Let’s not forget the latest Android update that was rolled out to Facebook Messenger, which brought chat heads to all phones. In essence Facebook Messenger is now in users’ SMSs as well should they opt for that and those chats heads are always floating around on your screen. You can’t miss Facebook Messenger.Facebook’s mobile stood at over 680 million monthly active users as of 31 December, 2012 and this number is likely to grow.Viber: Another cross-platform free app this lets users call, text, send photos and video messages. The app is one of the top apps in the Android Play Store and is available for iOS, BlackBerry and Windows Phone as well.Viber also has a desktop app which was launched recently and reached 200 million users in May 2013. Again this is as big as WhatsApp.Clearly BBM on Android and iOS will have its task cut out.Credit: FirstPostlast_img read more

29 Jul

Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 edge Unpacked launch

first_imgImage Credit: indianexpress Advertisement The anticipated Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge is finally here. The Unpacked event for the Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge is held in Barcelona at 19:00 CET, and for the first time, the launch will be presented in a 360 live-streaming. Those that cannot make it to Barcelona, you can get to watch the event on your computer, smartphone or Gear VR with the new Samsung Unpacked 360 View app. The application is available on Google Play Store and App Store.However, in addition, during the Galaxy Unpacked you will get four options for where to watch from; the auditorium, stage left, stage right or from center stage. Pick whichever spot is right for you, then use the 360 live streaming to get a complete view of the event from every angle.To learn how to watch Galaxy Unpacked by PC, mobile device or in the immersive world of Gear VR, read on. – Advertisement – Watching on the PCHead to the Galaxy Unpacked page on the Samsung website when the event begins.Choose from one of four viewing positions for the event.Watching on MobileLive-Streaming on your smartphone. Download the app from google play store or app store. Image Credit: SamsungGo to the Google Play Store or the App Store and search for the free Unpacked 360 View app.Download the app and install it.Once the event starts, launch the app and you can select one of four viewing angles.Watching with Gear VRVR Live-Streaming. Image Credit SamsungGo to the Oculus Store and search for the Unpacked 360 View app.Download and install it.Launch the app using the Gear VR headset.When the event begins, select one of four viewing angles.This year’s #Unpacked is kicking off tonight. Prepare yourself for a completely immersive experience. #TheNextGalaxyhttps://t.co/8dQ2VjPGDv— Samsung Mobile (@SamsungMobile) February 21, 2016Confirmation from a retail source, rumours that the Samsung Galaxy S7 release date will be on March 11, with pre-orders starting today (Launch Event).last_img read more

29 Jul

New Event set to Ignite Africas Gaming Potential

first_imgAdvertisement Africa’s gaming potential is to be explored and celebrated at WrB Africa, taking place on 11-12 April at The Sheraton Lagos Hotel, Nigeria.As part of the WrB Series run by Clarion Events, WrB Africa is the first ever summit dedicated to exploring the exciting opportunities and encouraging a regulatory framework that will produce a thriving and sustainable gaming industry in Sub-Saharan Africa.“We have launched WrB Africa for those seeking to unlock the huge potential of this region, but who may be unsure of the complexities of the regulatory environment. Perhaps they are already operating in one of the fast growing African regions but want to step up a level”, says Curtis Roach, senior conference producer on the event. – Advertisement – Delegates will be presented with a heavy-weight agenda and over 30 market-leading organisations to network with and to do business with, as well as the opportunity to learn directly from the leading companies based in East, West and Central Africa, in addition to the continent’s major regulators.The speaker line-up includes a keynote session from Lanre Gbajabiamila, chief executive of the Lagos State Lottery Board (LSLB).Other speakers include John Kamara, Director of Global Gaming Africa, Tarimba Abbas, Director General of Tanzania Gaming Board, Edward Lalumbe, COO of the Gauteng Gambling Board and Matthias Jacek Wojdyla, Head of International Affairs at FIFA.Gbajabiamila is optimistic about the continued growth of gambling in Lagos and Nigeria, with technology and the public’s appetite for sport among the driving forces.“The Nigerian gaming industry is an evolving one and gradually expanding. More states and individuals are becoming more aware of the opportunities that exist in the industry in terms of entertainment, revenue and employment.“We are really pleased to be associated with WrB Africa, it’s a great event that the market demands and I’m excited at the opportunities that it will create for the Sub-Saharan gaming industry.”Rory Credland, Event Director added: “It will be fantastic to bring together so many people from across the globe to talk about responsible gambling and how we can help to create a sustainable future for one of the Gaming industry’s high-potential markets.”WrB Africa is taking place at The Sheraton Lagos Hotel, Lagos, Nigeria, from April 11th – 12th in Lagos, Nigeria. More information including the agenda, speaker list and booking details is available at http://Africa.WrBriefing.comlast_img read more

29 Jul

Facebook Messenger now has One Billion Active Users

first_imgImage Credit: newsroom.fb.com Advertisement Facebook is reporting that Messenger has reached more than 1 billion active monthly users.“Today we are announcing that more than 1 billion people now use Facebook Messenger every month, making Messenger one of only a handful of apps worldwide that touch so many lives,” the company wrote on its news blogMessenger has grown rapidly in 2016, gaining around 100 million active users every three months. The service hit 800 million users in January and 900 million in April. Facebook released a flurry of stats about Messenger, noting that Messenger has become the second most popular iOS app of all time (behind Facebook, of course). It’s been downloaded over 1 billion times on Android, and 1 billion messages are sent between people and businesses every month.People are using Messenger for more than just text messages. The app also allows users to make voice over IP (VoIP) calls to each other. The functionality has become such a popular part of the service that Messenger now accounts for 10 percent of all the VoIP calls made on the Internet. Messenger users are also sending each other 22 million GIFs every day. Gaming has also been a popular feature on the app, with users playing 1.2 billion games of basketball and 250 million games of soccer through its games interface. – Advertisement – The platform is also becoming an important way for businesses to interact with their customers. Messenger currently hosts more than 18,000 bots, with 23,000 developers having signed up for the company’s bot development program.last_img read more

29 Jul

£25 FREE BET Netherlands v England

first_img£25 FREE BET IFFOUR OR MORE GOALS IN MATCHWe are giving all starsports.bet NEW CUSTOMERS a £25 FREE BET if FOUR OR MORE GOALS IN THE MATCH (90 mins).You simply need to open an account and place a bet at evens or above, of at least £10, on any market at starsports.bet between 7.45pm on Wednesday 5 June and 7.45pm on Thursday 6 June. TERMS AND CONDITIONS(1) This promotion is for new account holders only. To qualify, you must open a new account at starsports.bet anytime from 7.45pm (GMT) on Wednesday 5 June to 7.45pm (GMT) on Thursday 6 June.(2) In addition, you must place at least one bet online with starsports.bet before 7.45pm (GMT) on Thursday 6 June. The bet must be for a stake of £10 (or more), on a selection at evens or above, on any market as displayed on the starsports.bet web site, excluding specials or enhanced odds markets.(3) The bonus promotional offer of £25 will be paid as a Free Bet if THERE ARE FOUR OR MORE GOALS IN THE MATCH (90 mins) (Netherlands v England 7.45pm). The Free Bet will be valid for a period of 7 days from the point of issue and must be used within this period otherwise will expire.(4) If, for any reason, the event(s) do not take place or are declared void for betting purposes this offer will also be voided.(5) The bonus Free Bet, if successful, will be credited within 48 hours, direct to your online account.(6) Free Bets may not be used in conjunction with any other current promotion.(7) Star Sports reserve the right to withdraw or refuse any Free Bet promotion at any point.(8) Free Bet stakes are not returned with winnings.(9) Free Bet awards cannot be exchanged for cash.(10) Free Bet awards can be used online, tablet or mobile only.(11) The Free Bet must be used within the timeframe specified on the promotion details and may not be either part used or carried forward.(12) This promotion can only be used once per person and per account. Only one bonus can be awarded per person, household, shared computer or shared IP address. In the event of a customer opening more that one account to claim multiple offers we reserve the right to suspend/close duplicate accounts and void any bets placed.(13) Usual Star Sports Betting Rules and Terms and Conditions apply, these can be viewed at starsports.bet.(14) If you have any further questions about this promotion you can contact our customer service team cs@starsportsbet.co.uklast_img read more

28 Jul

Rice Student IBM Chess Machine to Match Wits

first_imgAddThis Share CONTACT: Lisa Nutting PHONE:(713) 831-4797 Tony Elam PHONE: (713) 527-4734 97-94RICE STUDENT, IBM CHESS MACHINE TO MATCH WITS Before Deep Blue — IBM’s chess machine and thefirst computer to beat the world’s human chess champion — takes another shot ata million dollar match in May, a Rice student and DB Junior, a smaller versionof Deep Blue, will go head-to-chip as a crowd watches their every move.The man-against-machine chess match will be featured during Rice’s Computerand Information Technology Institute’s Distinguished Lecture Series on March 18.The lecture, titled “Deep Blue-The IBM Chess Machine,” will be presented byChung-Jen Tan, senior manager of the Parallel System Platforms Department at theIBM T.J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, N.Y.The event, sponsored by Rice’s Computer and Information Technology Institute(CITI) and the University of Houston, will be held 4-6 p.m. in Anne and CharlesDuncan Hall’s McMurtry Auditorium and Martel Hall. The lecture is set for 4-5p.m., followed by the reception and chess demonstration from 5 to 6 p.m.Rice student Nathan Doughty, a Will Rice College junior, has been selected tomatch wits against DB Junior, a smaller RS/6000 workstation chess system basedon Deep Blue technology. DB Junior will be programmed at Doughty’s level ofchess play to ensure a competitive game, said Tony Elam, executive director ofCITI. The game will be played through a network connection to a system at IBM inNew York and projected to the audience via a big-screen monitor. Doughty and theDeep Blue representative will be located in a small room nearby.Deep Blue made history last year by becoming the first computer to beat WorldChess Champion Garry Kasparov in a regulation game. The two competed in thefirst-ever traditional chess match between man and computer. The match beganwith the famed win for Deep Blue, followed by a win for Kasparov, two draws, andtwo more wins by Kasparov.Although Kasparov, an 11-year champion, came back to win the six-game match,the IBM Deep Blue system demonstrated that a sophisticated chess system can bedeveloped using the IBM RS/6000 SP parallel processor, achieving a long-standinggoal of computer science.During his lecture, Tan, manager for the IBM Deep Blue computer chessproject, will describe the architecture of the Deep Blue system and illustratethe strong and weak points of the computer through highlights of the match. Hewill also cover the implications of the event on chess and technology.Since the Deep Blue-Kasparov match in February 1996, IBM has worked toimprove its chess machine in preparation for “The IBM Chess Challenge Rematch”against Kasparov, set for May 3-11 at the Equitable Center in New York City. Toadvance the system’s development, IBM has been modifying algorithms and takingcare of its weaknesses in the past year. Deep Blue has also been matched againstother chess masters.The reception is open to the Rice community and the general public. Forfurther information call 527-4734.### last_img read more

28 Jul

Shaping of Modern Universities Focus of Scientia Lecture

first_imgAddThis Share CONTACT: Lia Unrau PHONE: (713)831-4793E-MAIL: unrau@rice.edu SHAPING OF MODERN UNIVERSITIES FOCUS OF SCIENTIALECTUREBoles, Zammito to Explore Events That Created Rice, Major HigherEducation InstitutesJust what Edgar Odell Lovett had inmind—and the possible German influence on his thinking—when he shaped RiceUniversity at the beginning of this century will be the focus of the openingprogram of this year’s Scientia Lecture Series.Scientia’s theme for this academic year is ”Rethinking theUniversity.” John Boles, Rice’s William Pettus Hobby Professor ofHistory, and John Zammito, associate professor of history, will present talks at4 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 14, in the Kyle Morrow Room of Fondren Library. Theevent is free and open to the public.Boles will discuss the educational vision of Lovett, Rice’sfirst president.”Both Lovett and the trustees recognized the unusualopportunity they had, and from the beginning they planned for Rice ultimately tobe a university of the highest rank,” Boles said.Zammito will explore the influence of Wilhelm von Humboldt,the founder of the University of Berlin, on the modern researchuniversity.”Humboldt’s vision of a modern research university aimed tomaximize the cross-fertilization of teaching and research under the culturalprinciples of his idealist neohumanism,” Zammito said. ”The question of how tointegrate the burgeoning fields of science and technology within this agenda andthus to bridge the emergent ”two cultures,” became the theoretical issue mostcentral to 19th century thought on the university.”Henry Rosovsky, professor emeritus at Harvard University,will present the next Scientia event, the Bochner Lecture, at 8 p.m., Thursday,Sept. 23, in the McMurtry Auditorium in Anne and Charles Duncan Hall.Scientia is an institute of Rice University faculty foundedin 1981 by the mathematician and historian of science Salomon Bochner. Scientiaprovides an opportunity for scholarly discussion across disciplinary boundaries.Its members and fellows come from a wide-range of academicdisciplines.###last_img read more

28 Jul

Statement of James A Baker III on the passing of Margaret Thatcher

first_imgAddThis ShareSTATEMENTDavid Ruth713-348-6327david@rice.eduStatement of James A. Baker, III, on the passing of Margaret ThatcherHOUSTON – (April 8, 2013) – The following is a statement by James A. Baker, III, on the passing of Margaret Thatcher:“The United Kingdom lost a strong leader, the United States lost a great friend and the world lost a powerful voice today with the passing of Margaret Thatcher. Mikhail Gorbachev rightly called her the ‘Iron Lady,’ and she was that, correcting her country’s labor woes and implementing a resolute vision that helped lead to the peaceful end of the Cold War. She could charm and persuade her adversaries whenever possible, but also knew how to cower them when needed. Margaret Thatcher was an extraordinary leader who led by example, a strong prime minister who was superb in dealing with the intersection of politics and public policy.”-30-Founded in 1993, the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University in Houston ranks among the top 20 university-affiliated think tanks globally and top 30 think tanks in the United States. As a premier nonpartisan think tank, the institute conducts research on domestic and foreign policy issues with the goal of bridging the gap between the theory and practice of public policy. The institute’s strong track record of achievement reflects the work of its endowed fellows and Rice University scholars. Learn more about the institute at www.bakerinstitute.org or on the institute’s blog, http://blogs.chron.com/bakerblog.last_img read more

28 Jul

New Jack sculpture by Jim Love to be dedicated May 10 at

first_imgAddThis ShareMEDIA ADVISORYDavid Ruth713-348-6327david@rice.eduJeff Falk713-348-6775jfalk@rice.eduNew ‘Jack’ sculpture by Jim Love to be dedicated May 10 at RiceHOUSTON – (May 7, 2013) – Rice University will dedicate “Jack,” its new permanent installation from acclaimed American modernist sculptor Jim Love, at 1:30 p.m. May 10.The red 5-by-5-foot steel sculpture is positioned on the lawn in front of the university’s Barbara and David Gibbs Recreation and Wellness Center, 6100 Main St.JIM LOVE“This playful and active sculpture is an iconic edition to our growing constellation of public art installations on the Rice campus,” said Rice University Art Director Molly Hubbard. “We are incredibly thankful to the Kenneth E. Bentsen family for their generosity in making this significant contribution to our collection.”Love (1927–2005) was born in Amarillo, Texas. He graduated from Baylor University in 1952 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. After graduation, he moved to Houston. Love championed the practice of creating art out of the scrap metal he found in junkyards. The artist rose to prominence in 1961 when his groupings of found objects were included in the groundbreaking exhibition “The Art of Assemblage” at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.Love was the creator of highly visible public sculptures in Houston that include the “Call Ernie” airplane at the entrance to Hobby Airport; the “Portable Trojan Bear” in Hermann Park; and the welded screen “Area Code” in the lobby of the Alley Theatre.“Jim Love was not only one of Houston’s most important artists and a catalyst for the Houston art scene, he was also a close friend,” the Bentsen family said. “His art, and in particular his ‘Jack,’ became part of our family and then our children’s families. After influencing four generations of Bentsens, we can think of no better home than Rice University, where it will bring the same awe and joy to more generations to come.”For more information on public art at Rice, visit publicart.rice.edu.Media interested in covering the May 10 dedication ceremony should RSVP to Jeff Falk, associate director of national media relations at Rice, at jfalk@rice.edu or 713-348-6775.-30-Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,708 undergraduates and 2,374 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice has been ranked No. 1 for best quality of life multiple times by the Princeton Review and No. 2 for “best value” among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to http://tinyurl.com/AboutRiceU. last_img read more