City League roundup

first_imgStandings (after week two):Team:              Conf.   Ovr.1. Allderdice    2-0    3-12. Westinghouse    2-0    2-23. Perry    1-0    1-34. Brashear    1-1    2-25. Carrick    1-1    1-36. Schenley    1-1    1-37. Langley    0-1    2-18. Oliver    0-2    0-49. Peabody    0-2    0-4 (Follow our continuing coverage and add your comments to our website at www.newpitts­burghcourieronline.com.) by Malik Vincent For New Pittsburgh CourierBoth the Allderdice boys and girls sit atop the City League standings last week marked the beginning of conference play. The boys currently have an undefeated mark (3-0) with two wins in the city. The girls are currently 3-1 with one nonconference loss to Vincentian Academy in the Serra Catholic tournament on Dec. 11.The Carrick boys are staying in line, so far, with who Allderdice’s coach, Andre McDonald believes is the “surprise team in the city this year,” with a 3-1 overall mark. Here’s a look at what happened in the opening week of City League play: Boys: Results: Fri. Dec 17—Peabody 58, Westinghouse 53; Carrick 59, Oliver 34; Allderdice 76, Brashear 49; Schenley 68, Langley 65. Standings (after week two):Team:              Conf.  Ovr.1. Allderdice    2-0    3-02. Carrick    2-0    3-13. Perry    1-0    2-14. Peabody    1-1    2-25. Schenley    1-1    2-26. Brashear    1-1    1-37. Langley    0-1    0-48. Westinghouse    0-2    0-39. Oliver    0-2    0-5GirlsResults: Fri. Dec. 17—Oliver 39, Carrick 36; Allderdice 63, Brashear 29; Schenley 31, Langley 26; Westinghouse 68, Peabody 12.last_img read more

Pirates begin camp with mix of questions, optimism

first_imgRELIABLE RESERVE–Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop Josh Harrison throws to first base during a baseball spring training workout, Feb. 13, in Bradenton, Fla. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall) by Will GravesAP Sports WriterBRADENTON, Fla. (AP) — Clint Hurdle no longer digs his cleats in the dirt. That’s a thrill he believes should be reserved for players. Besides, the Pittsburgh Pirates manager has too much on his mind these days to fool around in the batter’s box to take a few hacks.Hurdle has six weeks to turn the group of 61 players who will be on the field in Pirates City this weekend into a 25-man club by April 1. He has to find a fifth starter. He has to figure out what his bullpen will look like and who will flank All-Star centerfielder Andrew McCutchen.Oh, and then there’s the pesky little business of trying to figure out how to turn around — for good — the fortunes of a franchise that has gone two decades since playing meaningful games in October.The Pirates flirted with success last season. More than flirty actually. From mid-June to mid-August they were arguably one of the best teams in baseball. They soared to 16 games over .500 and appeared to be a legitimate threat to Cincinnati for the NL Central title.Then the bottom fell out. Pittsburgh plunged to a 79-83 finish. And Hurdle, who is entering the final season of his three-year deal, knows it can’t happen again.“These men want more and they know if you want more you’ve got to do more and that comes down to getting better every day, to create a mindset where you’re going to improve as the season goes on,” Hurdle said.Something that didn’t happen as August turned into September. Yet Hurdle believes the Pirates are ready to take the elusive step to respectability.“My feeling is that these men are definitely committed to winning,” he said. “You look around to our core players … we’re all in.”Hurdle’s task over the next few weeks is filling in the gaps.While the front end of the rotation is set and the Pirates appear to be strong up the middle with new catcher Russell Martin, healthy second baseman Neil Walker and McCutchen, things on the fringe appear to be murkier.The revamped bullpen will undergo a massive makeover. Set-up man Jason Grilli will try to prove his 36-year-old right arm is healthy enough to close for the first time in his nomadic career. The back of the rotation is deep but in flux. The fifth spot should eventually go to lefthander Francisco Liriano whenever he recovers from a broken right arm. Until then Jeff Locke, Kyle McPherson, Jeanmar Gomez and non-roster invitee Jonathan Sanchez could all get a shot.Then again, they may merely be placeholders for Liriano, Charlie Morton — who is recovering from Tommy John surgery and should be back by June — and former No. 1 pick Gerrit Cole.Cole will spend some time with the big club during camp but is expected to start the season at Triple-A Indianapolis. How long he stays there, however, is unclear. If he can duplicate his impressive 2012 in which he rose from the Single A Florida State League to Triple-A in a few short months, the burly right-hander could be in Pittsburgh by July 4.Then there’s the outfield, where Starling Marte and Travis Snider appear to have the first crack at starting alongside McCutchen but should be pushed by Alex Presley and a healthy Jose Tabata, who has struggled since signing a contract extension in 2011.That’s a lot to chew on, though Hurdle is hardly complaining. The Pirates have the kind of potential depth this spring that would have served them well last autumn, when the rotation broke down and things started to fall apart.It may take awhile for things to shake out. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. After two straight seasons of hot starts followed by abysmal finishes, the Pirates are OK if they need some time to get a sense of themselves.“We’ve got to control the grind which is one of the biggest challenge of all sports,” Hurdle said. “Sometimes you can get caught up in the vacuum of the season where the grind can overwhelm you.”Whatever it was, Pittsburgh was overwhelmed late in 2012. It was a difficult but necessary process.“We have the lessons that have been learned that have been meaningful,” Hurdle said. “I think we very honestly self-evaluated.”NOTES: The Pirates expect to have all but two players on the field for Friday’s workout. Newly acquired infielder Brandon Inge should arrive in camp on Friday after traveling from his home in Michigan. Right-handed pitcher Stolmy Pimentel remains in the Dominican Republic due to visa issues but is expected to be in Bradenton by the weekend.Follow Will Graves at www.twitter.com/WillGravesAPlast_img read more

Another Crow Species Impresses Scientists with Tool-Making Skills

first_imgWho would have thought that crows rival chimpanzees in intelligence?  Members of the corvid group, which includes crows and ravens, are amazing researchers with their ability to make tools.    Previous studies with New Caledonian crows (08/09/2002, 10/07/2007, 02/23/2007) impressed researchers with the birds’ abilities to fashion simple tools out of available materials to reach food.  Now, experiments with common rooks show the same degree of intelligence.  A report on the BBC News includes three video clips where you can watch birds in the lab cleverly figure out how to get inaccessible food by selecting rocks or fashioning a hook out of wire to pull the food out of a tube.  They invoke a skill called metatool use – using two tools in succession to obtain a result.  They also showed the mental flexibility to use alternative tools to achieve the same goal.    The report says scientists were surprised at the results, because rooks do not seem to need this intelligence to survive.  Christopher Bird said, “We’ve seen this kind of tool use in New Caledonian crows, but the interesting thing about the rooks is that they do not use tools in the wild.”  A question arose why tool-use intelligence evolved in these birds.  The BBC article said, “the finding that rooks can use tools now raises questions about how this special ability might have come about.”  Dr. Nathan Emery [Queen Mary, U of London] asked, “Because they don’t use tools in the wild, the question is why should they have evolved the ability to use tools in the lab and understand the properties of those objects as tools?  Is this a form of general intelligence that has been co-opted for tool use?”    Science Daily offered a similar idea: “These findings suggest that rooks’ ability to use tools and represent the tools’ useful properties may be a by-product of a sophisticated form of physical intelligence, rather than tool use having evolved as an adaptive specialisation, such as has been proposed for the tool using abilities of New Caledonian crows.”  Are they suggesting a new mechanism for evolution?  How could natural selection, which only acts on the present need, create a general ability for what might be needed in the future?  It also raises the question why other animals in similar ecological niches did not evolve the ability.Maybe it didn’t evolve.  Darwinists are addicted to after-the-fact storytelling.  They cannot provide any factual sequence of lucky mutations that turns a skull full of mush into a problem-solving computer.  Think of how many simultaneous evolutionary mistakes would be involved in tool use: adaptations to the eyes, the beak, the feet, and the brain computer.    Evolutionary theory was completely unnecessary for this science project.  For scientists to make up a story out of thin air after the fact that selection pressures caused this ability to evolve is a non-explanation.  It turns the word “evolve” into a miracle word that plugs leaks in understanding with silly putty.  When the yellow silly putty of natural selection doesn’t fool enough people, they try the pink silly putty of co-option.    Evolutionary explanations are little different than shamanism.  The witch doctor explains to his tribe that the reason it rained is because the gods are angry, or happy, or whatever line is needed to keep the natives supporting the Witch Doctor Academy.  Let’s move our support to IDU (Intelligent Design University), where there is respect for natural law – in this case, that life begets life, and intelligence begets intelligence.    Two rooks walked into the Crow Bar for some geek talk over lunch.  One said, “I found an iPhone but can’t figure out a way to text my friends.”  The other twittered back, “I use a bent piece of wire.  The only trouble is, we only know one word – caw – and iPhones are so dumb, they don’t allow you to put vocal expression into the message.”  The other replied, “And that makes all the difference in our language.  Oh well, I suppose I can drop it from the top of a building to crack a nut.”  “That’s a pretty heavy object to lift,” the other said, sipping some Old Crow.  “Beak careful.”  In the background, the jukebox droned on,    You drop sixteen stones, and what do you get?    Another few grubs and a crappy tool set.    So labby don’t you film me, ’cause I can’t go,    I owe my soul to the Darwinist show.(Visited 13 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Go Geocaching and Don’t Forget Your Sheep

first_imgHere’s a little geocaching scenario for you. You’re about to embark on your next geocaching adventure. Your mind starts racing through the all-too-familiar checklist: GPS (check), pen (check), extra batteries (check)… wait, you’re forgetting something. What could it be? Extra batteries? Nope. You almost forgot to bring your stuffed-animal sheep. Whew, that was a close call.That’s the actual geocaching checklist for Ontario’s Cheryl Shaw and her husband Dave Devine. They call themselves “Team Sheep.”Cheryl and Dave (minus sheep)Cheryl and Dave started geocaching just over a year ago. Almost all of their 401 finds share something in common— a picture of their stuffed animal sheep with the cache. Cheryl says, “I now own more pictures of that sheep than I do of my family.”The whole practice of posing a stuffed animal by a cache began innocently enough.Cheryl says, “It all started with some travel coin I picked up. They wanted a picture with the coin and me. But somehow I didn’t feel like being photographed that day. So I looked around my house for something cutesy to photograph with the coin and found ‘sheep’ sitting on my sewing table. ‘Good enough,’ I thought, and out the door I went to go caching. Since then, I have photographed the sheep at every cache we have found.”Sheep proposesThe sheep, and his wardrobe, evolved. He now has several outfits, everything from a karate uniform, fatigues and a hockey jersey to seasonal outfits for Easter, Halloween and Christmas. He even has a tux.Cheryl says that the sheep recently got serious about a relationship: “Last week he even proposed to a fellow cacher ring and all!”The other cacher had just gotten engaged. Cheryl says the sheep has developed his own personality. The log that accompanies the proposal picture reads: “We told the geo sheep about how Lisa got engaged and he was a little heartbroken, ‘Tell her that if things don’t work out with that nano guy I’m available!’ he said.’Sure thing’ we said, ‘You were definitely her second choice.’”“It certainly adds to the fun to geocache with an avatar,” Cheryl says. “Cache owners have appreciated the sheep pictures. When people contact me they act like sheep is real, such as ‘say hi to sheep for me, or sheep looked very handsome today or sorry I missed meeting the sheep.’” She has even received fan mail for sheep.Even if you never see sheep on your geocaching rounds, Cheryl hopes the idea travels. “I would thoroughly recommend that other cachers use an avatar. It’s fun. It’s more than just signing a log and running away. We try very hard to pose the sheep and take several pictures, choosing the best one for the web page.”She says that there are other benefits to using an avatar as well.  “We tend to remember all our caches better, and best of all sheep always has some smart remark or stupid joke about the cache. (He can get away with saying things I can’t.)”With more than 400 cache logs in one year, there’s no telling where sheep may show up next. If you’re in the Ottawa, Ontario area, you can now visit Cheryl’s first “sheep-themed” cache, “The Sheeps’ Revenge” (GC25CMF).Would you ever consider using an avatar? What sort of avatar would you use?Share with your Friends:More SharePrint Relatedlast_img read more

An Energy-Self-Sufficient Community

first_imgFrom a distance, Feldheim looks like many other rural villages in Germany: a cluster of buildings surrounded by farmland and forests. The backdrop includes numerous wind turbines, but that’s not unusual in Germany’s breezy north. What is unusual is that there are two signs welcoming visitors to Feldheim: the typical yellow sign that is found at the edge of every village, and another in blue and white announcing that Feldheim is an “Energieautarker Ortsteil,” or an energy self-sufficient district.In 2010, Feldheim became one of the first villages in Germany to supply all of its own electricity and heat. Electricity from wind and PV are becoming cheapFollowing the tour, I had a chance meeting at the EQ-Sys facility with Michael Raschemann, one of the two founders of Energiequelle. I was surprised both by his youthfulness and his accessibility. When I asked about the absorption cooling system that used heat from the biogas plant to keep the EQ-Sys factory cool during the summer, he happily showed me the system’s components. On the shop floor, he also explained to me various exhibits-in-progress that would be housed in Feldheim’s New Energy Forum.“All that you have helped to achieve here in Feldheim is impressive and admirable,” I told him. “I’d like to think that communities in the U.S. could also become energy self-sufficient. But how feasible is it to replicate Feldheim’s success without generous government subsidies and a deep-pocketed partner like Energiequelle?”He considered the question and answered carefully.“I think it comes down largely to energy prices. In Germany, new wind parks are producing power for 4 to 5 cents per kilowatt hour, which is on par with coal plants that burn lignite [inexpensive but highly polluting brown coal]. Power generated by large solar farms continues to drop in price, and is now in the 8 to 10 cent per kilowatt hour range — making the newest PV competitive with gas-fired power plants, and within striking range of coal plants. As costs for renewable energy continue to drop, many things will become possible.”I thanked him for his time, and for helping to demonstrate in Feldheim what may one day be possible to achieve in villages around the world. Wood chips are used to fuel a combined heat and power plantThe wood-chip boiler is located a few hundred feet from the biogas plant. Heated water from the CHP plant flows to a distribution center (with all of the necessary manifolds and circulators) near the boiler, and from there is sent through distribution pipes to buildings in the village. The boiler is equipped with two hot water storage tanks that help to accommodate spikes in hot water usage — for example during unusually cold weather. The wood-chip boiler does not fire often, because heat from the CHP plant covers the village’s needs for most of the year.After seeing the biogas plant and the wood-chip boiler, we piled into a bus to visit the solar farm located between Feldheim and the town of Treuenbrietzen. During the Cold War, the Russian military had used the site as a communications center. When the Russians abandoned the buildings in 1994, Treuenbrietzen did not have the resources to make use of the site. Energiequelle purchased the site in 2004 for a nominal sum, invested about 1.7 million euros in building demolition and site remediation, and began developing the solar farm in phases. Although the solar farm is owned by Energiequelle, all of the PV panels are mounted on trackers produced in Feldheim by the company’s daughter firm, EQ-Sys.As we wandered through the field of large column-mounted PV arrays, I asked a member of the group about other stops on their energy-related tour of Germany. One of the group’s visits had been to a nuclear power plant that was being decommissioned.“The nuclear power plant’s output was roughly equivalent to that of the wind park in Feldheim,” he told me. “The plant took ten years to build, it operated for twenty years, and it will take twenty years to decommission. Makes wind power look pretty attractive, doesn’t it?” RELATED ARTICLES Germany’s Bioenergy VillagesVisiting a District Heating Plant in AustriaGerman Building Codes Keep Ratcheting UpA Construction Trade Fair in GermanyA Visit to a German Home CenterA German Deep-Energy RetrofitGermany’s Energy RevolutionAn Energy-Efficiency Conference in Germany The wind turbines are supported by concrete towersThe final stop on our tour was the wind park — or rather, two of the many wind turbines located on agricultural land just outside the village of Feldheim. As I have long been fascinated by these giant wind turbines, I was excited to see them close up.The first tower we visited was a 2.3-MW unit that has been in operation since 2005. Kathleen gave us the particulars: 98 meters high to the hub, rotor diameter of 71 meters, etc.I was surprised to learn that the stacked rings that make up the tower are concrete until the uppermost section, which is steel. Two vertical holes in each column section are aligned so that steel cables can be installed that run the height of the tower. The cables tie the sections together, but they also allow for some flexibility in high winds. The 16 meter diameter base of the tower contains a transformer and inverters for managing the power generated, and a simple cable-suspended man lift for conveying technicians up and down. A vertical ladder along the inside of the tower provides emergency access.The second tower we visited was one under construction. I marveled at the size of the track crane being used to hoist mechanical equipment up to the top of the tower. This new turbine would have a capacity of 3.0 MW, which is apparently standard for the industry today. In the distance, we could see another similar tower being erected.The distant tower was part of a “repowering” project. Three of Feldheim’s original four wind turbines are being replaced. The original turbines were completed in 1994, and were rated at 500 KW. At 3.0 MW, the new turbines are six times more powerful. Energiequelle owns some turbines that are rated at 7.5 MW. The wind industry has come a long way in twenty years. Andrew Dey’s background includes carpentry, contracting, and project management. For the past six years he has provided construction consulting services to clients in New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts. He is passionate about retrofitting existing buildings — including his own house — for greater energy efficiency. His blog is called Snapshots from Berlin. Local residents get cheap electricityThe energy-related developments in Feldheim have had a cascading effect. The decision to install a district heating system led to discussions about the village’s electricity grid. Could some of the power being generated in the wind park be fed directly to buildings in the village?The answer was a qualified “yes.” When the utility company that owned the existing power lines refused to allow the village to use those lines to distribute electricity directly from the wind park, Energiequelle fronted the money to pay for the installation of new underground power lines — and fiber optic cables. As with the district heating system, the connection fee paid by building owners for access to this local grid was €1,500.Residents pay 16.6 cents/kWh for electricity. Germany’s national average is about 26 cents/kWh. It all started with a few wind turbinesI visited Feldheim twice recently. During my first visit I met with Michael Knape, the mayor of Treuenbrietzen, the adjacent town to which Feldheim belongs. I had seen Mr. Knape give a presentation about Feldheim at a bioenergy village conference in Berlin, and I was eager to follow up with him. He suggested that we meet “at the construction site” in Feldheim. When I asked which one, he sounded surprised: “There’s only one.” PV trackers are manufactured locallyThe relatively low cost of electricity and heat was a factor in Energiequelle’s decision to build the production plant of a daughter company, EQ-Sys, in Feldheim. The company, which fabricates trackers for solar arrays, has twenty-three employees, most of whom live in and around Feldheim.Heat from the CHP plant keeps the production facility warm in the winter and — via an absorption chiller — cool in the summer. The solar trackers fabricated in Feldheim were used by Energiequelle in a large solar farm that it developed on an abandoned Russian military base north of the village. A boost to the local economyThe story of Feldheim becoming energy self-sufficient is largely about the successful public-private partnership between Energiequelle, the company that Mr. Raschemann founded, and the village of Feldheim.In 2000, the German government passed the original version of its Renewable Energy Law that provides attractive incentives for investments in renewable energy. In consultation with the residents of Feldheim, Energiequelle developed a plan to build thirty-nine more wind turbines in two phases.With annual lease payments in the €15,000 to €20,000 range, these additional turbines represented a welcome boost to the local economy.By 2004, the renewable energy industry in Germany was growing briskly, but the agricultural sector was suffering. Prices had fallen for sugar beets and potatoes, the staple crops of the farmers in Feldheim. At the same time, costs for fuel, fertilizer, and animal feed were rising.Because Energiequelle had proven to be a reliable and generous partner for the village, the manager of the local agricultural cooperative approached Mr. Raschemann to explore ways in which the cooperative and the company might work together. These discussions led eventually to the building of a biogas plant that is jointly owned by the farmers and Energiequelle. Battery storageMy meeting with Mayor Knape helped to clarify the history, ownership structure, and financing of the projects in Feldheim. However, there wasn’t time for a tour of the various installations. He suggested that I contact the New Energy Forum Feldheim — the nonprofit group in whose temporary conference room we were meeting — to set up a tour.Before we parted, I asked Mr. Knape about what comes next: Where does he see Feldheim heading in terms of energy infrastructure?“We are looking forward in the coming months to the completion of the New Energy Forum Feldheim, which will be an information and training center focused on renewable energy and energy efficiency. We also hope to have a large battery storage system installed in Feldheim later this year. The battery will be able to store excess electricity from the wind farm, and release it when needed to the public grid. But my main focus these days is on the town of Treuenbrietzen. I’d like to find ways to adapt the technologies used and lessons learned in Feldheim to the town — particularly to the historic town center.” A district heating system with a wood-chip boilerThe villagers, the local municipality, and Energiequelle formed a limited partnership to finance and construct a district heating system that uses heat from the biogas-fired CHP plant. The system includes a wood chip-fired boiler and two hot water storage tanks to help handle peak heating loads. The boiler is fueled with waste wood from logging operations in the cooperatively owned local forest.The heating network supplies thirty-five homes, two town buildings, four large pig-breeding barns, and a machine shop.The district heating system was commissioned in 2009, and cost €1,725,000 ($2,348,000) — including the wood chip-fired boiler. Of this amount, €138,000 was provided by the local limited partnership, €830,000 came from EU and state grants, and the balance was financed conventionally through a local bank.The owners of each of the thirty-five homes on the grid paid a one-time connection fee of €1,500 ($2,000). Their heating costs have been averaging 10% to 20% less than for fossil fuel-based alternatives. Perhaps more importantly, most of the money that residents pay for heat stays in the village, and heating costs are now largely independent of fossil fuel prices. Finding the job site was not difficult. Feldheim has just one main street, and most of the village’s homes are on it. I pulled up to a two-story building wrapped in scaffolding. Several masons were repointing brick and reproducing masonry moldings on the front of the building, while at the gable end, another crew was installing batts of mineral wool insulation on the walls. A large sign out front announced the Neue-Energien-Forum Feldheim, or “New Energy Forum Feldheim.” I noticed an electric vehicle charging station adjacent to the building.As Mr. Knape and I settled into a temporary conference room that had been set up on site, I asked him, “Why Feldheim? Why here?”“In the early 1990s,” he told me, “a graduate student named Michael Raschemann visited the village while looking for a location to install four wind turbines.” The conditions in Feldheim seemed promising because the area is windy, and the land surrounding the village is relatively flat. In his subsequent discussions with the villagers, Mr. Raschemann proved adept at addressing the villagers’ concerns and winning their trust. He even offered local residents the opportunity to invest in one of the four wind turbines — a wise investment, as it turned out. Fuel from agricultural wasteThe technology underlying biogas fermenters is well-understood in Germany, where there are over 8,000 plants in operation. These systems typically create usable methane gas by fermenting a combination of agricultural waste and fuel crops. The raw materials that feed Feldheim’s biogas plant are all produced within a radius of about four kilometers, on land owned by the farmers’ cooperative.The methane gas generated in the biogas fermenter is burned in a combined heat and power (CHP) plant to produce heat and electricity. Originally the farmers had intended to heat only the stalls of their pig-breeding operation with heat from the CHP plant, but once it was up and running, they realized that the system could provide most of the heat needed in the village. A mixture of corn silage, rye, and manureI returned to Feldheim several weeks later to tour the renewable energy installations. The group I accompanied was an international delegation that was being hosted for a week in Germany by the nonprofit group Bread for the World. The group included representatives from Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Egypt, Tanzania, and Bolivia.After watching a PowerPoint presentation (in English, the common language), we headed out for the tour. Our guide was Kathleen Thompson, a British ex-pat who lives nearby.We stopped first at the biogas plant. Technicians from EnviTec, the company that had installed the plant, were doing routine maintenance. Kathleen explained that the farmers who cooperatively manage the plant typically handle day-to-day issues, but that every 2,000 hours (roughly every 3 months), professional technicians give the plant a tuneup.On a daily basis, corn silage, rye grain, and manure slurry are fed into a mixer, and then piped to the fermenting tank where the substrate remains for fifty days. Pipes conveying warm or cool water regulate the temperature in the tank, and the bacterial composition of the substrate is carefully monitored. Fermentation gas consisting mostly of methane and CO2 is collected from the top of the fermenter and piped to the CHP plant.The biogas is burned in the engine of the CHP plant to power a generator that creates electricity which is then fed into the public grid. Heat from this process is transferred to the district heating system via water pipes. The sludge that remains after the substrate has been fermented is a high quality fertilizer that the farmers spread on their fields.The entire process is automated, for the most part. Daily responsibility for the biogas plant rotates among the farmers, who typically check on the operation several times a day.last_img read more

Cricket: Indian Premier League brand value increases by $US 1 billion

first_imgAdvertisement Advertisement(Photo Courtesy: Hindustan Times)Indian Premier League has gained an increase in the overall brand value from US$ 5.3 billion in 2017 to US$ 6.3 billion in 2018, as per the findings of IPL Brand Valuation Report 2018.Varun Gupta, Managing Director, Duff & Phelps said in the press release that this increase in the brand value was mainly due to the change in broadcasting rights.“Star India’s broadcasting rights deal was a game changer that put IPL on par with some of the biggest sporting leagues in the world. The change in content consumption, the influx of over-the-top (OTT) and digital viewing platforms and increased support from advertisers, broadcasters and sponsors have given the IPL greater significance in terms of brand value,” said Gupta.The 2018 season also set a world record viewership of 10.7 million concurrent viewers, beating the 2012 world record of over 8 million concurrent viewers, held by Youtube for Felix Baumgartner’s space jump.Not only the broadcasting but also the social media played an equal role in increasing the brand value of the tournament.The report stated that the 2018 season saw a jump from 642,900 mentions in the first week of IPL 2017, to 855,400 in the first week of the 2018 season, which rose to 1.3 million after two weeks.Coming to the teams it was once again Mumbai Indians that stood on top in the overall brand value for the teams. Kolkata Knight Riders were placed second and the returning Chennai Super Kings were placed third.This edition saw Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings return to the elusive tournament after serving 2 years of suspension.Chennai went on to defeat Sunrisers Hyderabad in the finals to lift the title for the 3rd time.Also Read:Cricket: Arjun Tendulkar helps the Ground Staffs at Lord’slast_img read more

Children and Youth Committee visits Fort St John

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. -The all-party Select Standing Committee on Children and Youth is holding a public hearing in Fort St. John on Wednesday, May 22, 2019, to receive input on children and youth with neuro-diverse (e.g., ASD, FASD, developmental delay) special needs.The committee invites parents, caregivers, service providers and advocates to share their experiences and challenges with assessment and eligibility processes, and their recommendations for improvement.The public hearing will take place at the Pomeroy Hotel & Conference Centre (11308 Alaska Rd.) in the Sterling Pomeroy Ballroom, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. British Columbians can participate in the public hearing in person or by phone. Registration is available by calling the Parliamentary Committees Office at 250 356-2933 or 1 877 428-8337 (toll-free in B.C.) or on the committee’s website: www.leg.bc.ca/cmt/cay The committee also welcomes written comments, which can be submitted via its website. The consultation continues until 5 p.m. on Friday, June 7, 2019.The committee will consider all input and make recommendations to the legislative assembly in a report, which is expected to be released in the early fall.last_img read more

AIIMS Trauma Centre suspends admissions may remain affected for over a month

first_imgNew Delhi: Admission of patients to the emergency department of the AIIMS Trauma Centre, the biggest such facility in the country, is likely to be suspended for over a month after Sunday’s blaze rendered the operation theatre complex non-functional, hospital sources said on Monday. Several surgeries scheduled for Monday were postponed due to the non-functional OT, they said.On an average, 25-30 emergency surgeries are performed at the five major operation theatres of the facility, named Jai Prakash Narayan Apex Trauma Centre, on a daily basis. “New admissions cannot happen because of the non-functional OT complex. Patients who suffer trauma injuries or accidents come here and are emergency cases, mostly requiring surgery. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”Four to five emergency surgeries scheduled for Monday, that could not wait, are being performed at the main AIIMS facility. Rest of the surgeries, based on priority, would be performed over the next few days,” one of the sources added. However, the outpatient department of the facility is functional and the patients coming for follow-ups are being treated, they said. Unaware of the development, several patients who arrived at the hospital for treatment were sent back or referred to the main AIIMS hospital, besides Safdarjung and RML hospitals. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsThough the extent of the damage to the OT complex has not yet been ascertained, the engineering team which inspected it Monday estimated the repair would take at least two months as two out of the five major operation theatres were charred, a source said. He said all OT linen and cotton got burnt and some instruments were also damaged. Meanwhile, the hospital administration is trying to set up an OT on the first floor of the Wing A, which was dismantled few months ago due to renovation work on the floor, to perform admitted surgery cases. “The first floor was to be renovated to make five more operation theatres and one OT which was functional was dismantled couple of months back. That might be started for the time being to cater to the surgical needs of the admitted patients,” a senior doctor said. The doctor said the first, fourth and fifth floor patients who were shifted to disaster and casualty areas last night have been shifted back to their wards and everyone is safe. Some of the recuperating patients were discharged in the night itself. A woman guard and an employee of the fire unit of the trauma centre, who suffered Carbon Monoxide poisoning during the blaze, are being treated at the main AIIMS and their conditions remain stable, a source said. The emergency department of the hospital witnesses a footfall of an average 250-300 patients per day.last_img read more

Isiah Thomas Returning To The Knicks

It is amazing to some that Isiah Thomas is welcomed back in New York City, much/less back to the New York Knicks.The Hall of Fame player with the Detroit Pistons was a wreck as president of the Knicks. And yet, his relationship with Madison Square Garden chairman James Dolan is so strong that the New York Daily News reported that Dolan has given Thomas an opportunity to return to the team in a management capacity.According to the newspaper, Thomas and Dolan have had numerous discussions about a position in the organization, but Thomas has been reluctant to accept the job offer.“Isiah is very close with Jim Dolan but he’s told me that he’s not ready to jump back into the NBA just yet,” the News reported from a source who was with Thomas on Friday at the Basketball Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Springfield, Mass. “There’s this perception out there that Isiah is desperate to get back, but that’s false. I think it will eventually happen but just not now.”Friday, Thomas who presented inductee Chet Walker at the Hall, was spotted in a Manhattan hotel having breakfast with Dolan, which according to the source is not uncommon.“They’re friends. They talk all the time,” the source added.Two years ago, Dolan wanted to rehire Thomas as a consultant, but the NBA vetoed the move because Thomas was coaching Florida International University at the time. Once the league nixed the hiring, Dolan famously said that he could continue to solicit Thomas’ views on basketball-related matters.It is clear that Thomas is serving as an unofficial adviser, considering that his two former college teammates and longtime friends, Mike Woodson and Glen Grunwald, are the Knicks’ head coach and general manager, respectively.But there is animosity between Thomas and other top MSG executives in the aftermath of the highly publicized MSG sexual harassment trial in 2007.Thomas, who was fired by FIU last spring, is said to be content working on earning a master’s degree in education from UC-Berkeley and reconnecting with his Chicago roots.Recently, he recently participated in a “Stop the Violence” march in Chicago, where he told gang members, “This is genocide. You have to stop the killing.”Thomas, along with Bulls center Joakim Noah and former Knick Quentin Richardson, is scheduled to attend a basketball tournament on Sept. 22 to promote peace in Chicago.Last month, Thomas returned to the West Side of Chicago to honor his late mother at a ceremony in which Homan St. was changed to Mary Thomas Way.Thomas is not a candidate to replace Scott O’Neil, who was removed from his position as Garden president on Wednesday.Instead, Thomas will remain as the unpaid — but very visible — friend and adviser to Dolan, the Garden’s most powerful man. And no doubt one day they’ll officially be co-workers again. read more

Hazard is not keen on Madrid move Thorgan

first_imgEden Hazard is not considering a move away from Chelsea despite a number of media links speculating a move to Real Madrid, according to his brother Thorgan.The Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder explained how the European champions were in ‘transition’ and his brother would only leave Stamford Bridge ‘in the correct way’.“I know him and he’s not thinking about a move right now,” Thorgan told reporters, as cited by Football Espana.“In any case Real Madrid are in transition – he will wait and give his best, then see what happens at the end of the season.WolverhamptonMatch Preview: Wolverhampton vs Chelsea Boro Tanchev – September 13, 2019 Wolverhampton will host Chelsea at the Molineux Stadium in one of the most interesting Premier League games this weekend.“He doesn’t want to clash with Chelsea. If he does go one day he’ll do it in the correct way, without problems for the club.”The Belgian skipper couldn’t help his side break down the Toffees defence in a game that ended in a barren draw.The brothers are together with Belgium ahead of the UEFA Nations League fixtures against Iceland and Switzerland.last_img read more