Valdez: We have to maintain composure in Game 3

first_imgPalace: Duterte to hear out security execs on alleged China control of NGCP Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR That sequence pushed Bali Pure on the hill, 14-13, and a point away from making the finals.Valdez, however, redeemed herself when her 15th and final point of the game came off Keddy’s fingertips, giving Creamline a 15-14 edge.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“Keddy’s leadership is also what makes Bali Pure a strong team,” praised Valdez, who also marveled at the American’s imposing presence on the floor.“I didn’t think I was going to get blocked at that point but I really didn’t think about the score. I just wanted to get the ball back and score a kill,” Valdez recalled. Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blastcenter_img Creamline went on to topple Bali Pure in five sets with the Cool Smashers earning their first win over the Water Defenders this conference after four tries.And it couldn’t have come at a better time with Creamline facing elimination.The Cool Smashers forced a winner-take-all Game 3 on Thursday and the former Ateneo standout expects the Water Defenders to be at their best.“The important thing is we just have to maintain our composure in Game 3.”ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next BSP survey: PH banks see bright horizon amid dark global recession clouds Every 18 seconds someone is diagnosed with HIV Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netAlyssa Valdez coiled her body in the air before unleashing a forceful spike that more often than not, translates to a point for her team and triggers a wild celebration from the crowd.But that particular moment on Tuesday night was a different story with Jennifer Keddy, Bali Pure’s lengthy 6-foot-4 import, meeting Valdez midair and emphatically denying the Creamline star’s attempt.ADVERTISEMENT #KicksStalker: LeBron channels his inner Mamba, rocks Kobes in practice LATEST STORIES View commentslast_img read more

Fleming dismisses reports to coach India after World Cup

first_imgFormer New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming has dismissed reports about him succeeding Gary Kirsten as the coach of the Indian team after the World Cup in the sub-continent.The New Zealand Herald quoted Fleming as saying that coaching isn’t an important part of his life at the moment.Rumours were rife that the IPL team Chennai Super Kings (CSK) coach would take over the reins of the national team from Kirsten once the South African’s contract expires after the quadrennial event.Fleming, a veteran of 111 Tests and 280 ODIs, said that cricket is only important for him two to three months a year when he’s looking after the CSK in the IPL.He said he is enjoying his career in business and has made a commitment to spending more time with his family.- With PTI inputslast_img

Asian Wrestling Championship 2017: Harpreet Singh brings glory to India

first_imgThe opening day of the Asian Wrestling Championship 2017 proved good for India as Harpreet Singh clinched a bronze medal in Greco-Roman 80kg category.However, other Indians failed to put an impressive show in the championship.This was Harpreet’s second successive bronze medal at the Asian Championship, which he got after defeating Junjie Na of China 3-2. After the first round, the scores were tied at 1-1, Harpreet came back strongly in the second round by taking down his opponent to earn two points to lead 3-1.Although the Chinese got one point due to the Indian’s passivity, in the last minutes of the bout, Harpreet applied ‘bagaldo’ technique to clinch the win.Silver lining on the first dayHarpreet’s medal was the only silver lining on a day when the other Indian wrestlers returned empty handed.The first day of the Asian Championship lacked the sheen as it commenced to an extremely poor response with no facilities for either the fans or the media.Harpreet’s take on pressure to perform”There was a lot of pressure on me as I was the only medal hope left and I wanted to give the country a medal on the first day of the championship, being the hosts,” said Harpreet, who had bagged a bronze at the last edition in Bangkok, Thailand, according to PTI.”I focused very hard and strategised how I could win the bronze. I am glad I could apply the strategy well to win the medal in the end,” he added.advertisementAnother Indian in Gurpreet Singh (75kg) came close to finishing on the podium but lost his bronze medal bout 0-8 in just 38 seconds to Bin Yang of China.Interested in General Knowledge and Current Affairs? Click here to stay informed and know what is happening around the world with our G.K. and Current Affairs section.To get more updates on Current Affairs, send in your query by mail to read more

Virat Kohli storms past AB de Villiers, MS Dhoni to break another ODI record

first_imgVirat Kohli became the fastest to 3000 one-day international runs as captain, taking just 49 innings to get to the mark. The record was earlier held by AB de Villiers, who had reached the milestone in 60 innings. MS Dhoni, who handed over the Indian captaincy reins to Kohli, had got to 3000 ODI runs in 70 innings.Kohli, who first led India in an ODI in 2013, was playing in his 52nd ODI as captain. He loves leading from the front. As many as 13 of his 35 ODI hundreds have come as captain.Virat Kohli had a sensational tour of South Africa, where he scored 871 runs across formats. In the ODIs, he scored 558 runs including three hundreds. He was then once again among the runs in the three-match ODI series in England – Kohli made a fluent 75 in the first match which India won at Old Trafford before scoring 45 in the second at Lord’s.On Tuesday, in the series-decider, Kohli walked in after Rohit Sharma was dismissed cheaply. After a watchful start, Kohli unleashed a flurry of shots in an attempt to put the pressure back on England.Fastest to 3000 runs as captain in ODIs (fewest inns):49 VIRAT KOHLI60 AB de Villiers70 MS Dhoni74 Sourav Ganguly83 Misbah-ul-Haq / Graeme Smith #ENGvIND #INDvENGRajneesh Gupta (@rgcricket) July 17, 2018Fastest to……in ODIs as captain:1000 runs: Virat Kohli (17 innings)2000 runs: Virat Kohli (36)3000 runs: Virat Kohli (49)#ENGvIND #INDvENGRajneesh Gupta (@rgcricket) July 17, 2018In the company of Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli helped India recover from an early setback. The left-handed Dhawan was run out for 44 but by then the pair had added 71 for the second wicket.advertisementKohli also went past the 700-run mark in 2018 in only nine ODIs. Three other batsmen (Jonny Bairstow, Jason Roy and Joe Root) have scored more than 700 ODI runs this year but they have played more matches than Virat Kohli.Kohli was eventually dismissed for a 72-ball 71 when he was beaten by Adil Rashid’s leg-spin. In nine ODIs so far this year, he has scored 749 runs.Incidentally, Kohli was also the fastest to 1000 and 2000 ODI runs as captain.last_img read more

Andhra Pradesh brings Formula 1 racing to India after 14 years

first_imgFormula 1 Motorboat Racing is poised to set the river Krishna afire near the green field capital city of Amaravati. The global sporting event, F1H20 World Championship, is making a grand comeback to India, after a long gap of 14 years. Andhra Pradesh Tourism Authority (APTA) is hosting the prestigious racing extravaganza from November 16 to 18. More than 350 international drivers from the F1H20 circuit will compete for the top honours in the debut season of Amaravati in UIM motorboat racing.”This is one of the foundations of the Amaravati development project,” emphasized the state’s tourism secretary Mukesh Kumar Meena. “The resident organizing committee of F1H20 Grand Prix is geared to promote water sports culture which will also benefit the local fishermen communities,” said Meena. “AP Tourism has been applauded for all the initiatives taken so far and we intend to create solid resonance for Amaravati with F1H20.”The capital city is gearing up to welcome visitors from around the world. The 23-km-long stretch along the river Krishna will turn into a carnival site celebrating best of the sport along with a host of other exciting activities to engage the spectators and showcase arts, culture and delectable cuisine of Andhra Pradesh. For them, APTA is setting up viewing galleries near Punnami Ghat and close the Prakasam Barrage during the two-day event.To help Andhra Pradesh to put its state capital on the global sporting map, Marco Pietrini, Director of Logistics, F1H20 is in Amaravati working closely with APTA. “I am confident this initiative will take the sport to greater heights in the years to come. I won’t be surprised if India has its own team competing in the global arena in the coming years,” said Pietrini. This year the championship began in Portugal on May 18 and will end in Sharjah on December 15. The race in Amaravati will see the world’s top teams in action including those from Portugal, Italy, UAE and France besides Team Amaravati.advertisement”We are focused on conducting engaging sporting activities that nurture the spirit of outdoor enthusiasm in people across the country,” said Sandeep Mandava, CEO, India Extreme Adventure Activities, a Vijayawada based entity that is bringing in F1H20 as the pilot initiative. Besides this, it has plans to usher in adventure sports events in mountain biking, paragliding, trekking, bungee jumping, glacier biking, dirt biking, skiing and rock climbing.Also read: VW and Ford in talks on self-driving and electric vehiclesAlso read: Tata Harrier revealed officially, top 10 things to knowlast_img read more

Arsenal hierarchy say club never pursued super league breakaway

first_imgShare on WhatsApp Share via Email Arsenal European club football Arsenal’s Danny Welbeck undergoes two operations on broken ankle Read more “We knew that could be an option and we explored that option. We looked into that in two ways: a way of exploring the real possibility and also how it would help us to negotiate with Uefa under the new terms because every cycle we will negotiate. At the end of the day the outcome was the best possible because we got into a new deal with Uefa within the system that protected the domestic leagues.”Sanllehí rejected reports that there was a genuine proposal recently that Arsenal signed up for. “The way it was explained may seem we were doing secret things but there is nothing secret,” he said. “There is one document that has been presented in an article that has Arsenal’s name; it also has Barcelona’s name. But there’s no signature and I can assure you in Arsenal and Barcelona we have not seen the document. It’s a draft, probably drafted by some proposal discussed with one of those clubs in that list that I don’t know about. It’s a real document – I cannot deny that – but I can assure I’ve not seen that document.” Topics He is doubtful a European Super League is around the corner: “Not in the short term because we have an agreement with Uefa right now – but I don’t know what the future will bring because the future writes itself. I don’t envision, not in the short term or medium term, radical change.” Reuse this content Share on Facebook Read more news Venkatesham’s colleague Raúl Sanllehí, the director of football who joined from Barcelona, emphasised that Arsenal wanted to position themselves in the highest echelons of the game and therefore feel compelled to be part of any debate, but he suggested that the manoeuvring between the top clubs that make up the European Club Association (ECA) is as much to do with posturing to push for the best possible deals with Uefa as any clear push to form a Super League.“As [it is] responsible for top European clubs the ECA had to look to all the options for the future,” he said. “One of them, of course, could have been the possibility of a European Super League. We had a working team that participated – I was at Barcelona at that time, Ivan Gazidis [then of Arsenal] was there too. It was a conversation we didn’t hide from anybody, not even from the ECA smaller clubs. Arsenal’s hierarchy say they are not about to abandon the Premier League in search of a European Super League breakaway. Although they were part of the group that had discussions about the prospect, the Premier League remains the priority.“Arsenal aren’t or never have been interested in playing in any competition that weakens the Premier League,” the managing director, Vinai Venkatesham, said. “The Premier League is the world’s leading league in the leading sport; we don’t want to do anything to damage it. I see these articles that Arsenal want to break away – we never want to do any of that. But we also have to recognise we have to be in these conversations or we wouldn’t be responsible. We have to be in the conversations – it doesn’t necessarily mean we support them.” Premier League to introduce VAR but clubs reject overseas quota cut Share on LinkedIn Share on Messenger Share on Twitter The Fiver: sign up and get our daily football email. Share on Pinterestlast_img read more

Seaspans First Eco Ferry Arrives from Turkey

first_imgCanada’s Seaspan Ferries Corporation (SFC) has welcomed the Seaspan Swift, the first of two new dual-fuelled/hybrid (diesel, liquefied natural gas and battery) ferries ordered from Turkish Sedef Shipyard. The new vessel, currently docked at the SFC Tilbury Terminal in Delta, arrived in Canada after an eight-week journey that spanned a total of 10,661 nautical miles following its construction in Turkey.The 148.9-meter ferry, which can accommodate up to 59 trailers, will undergo a series of regulatory inspections and crew training programs throughout December before entering operation on January 2, 2017, SFC said.SFC further said that the Seaspan Swift was successfully bunkered using a tanker truck to deliver LNG onboard the vessel. This type of bunkering operation was the first of its kind in North America, according to the firm.The Seaspan Swift, along with its sister ship the Seaspan Reliant, mark the first vessels added to SFC’s fleet since 2002.The Seaspan Reliant, nearing completion and undergoing testing and trials in Turkey, is expected to arrive in Tilbury in early 2017, the shipping company said.SFC currently operates a fleet of seven ferries out of five terminals in British Columbia and supplies more than 50% of all cargo to Vancouver Island.last_img read more

Inspired by movie gang posing as IT officers busted

first_imgNew Delhi: Inspired by a Bollywood movie, a gang who duped the public by posing as Income Tax officers were busted in West Delhi area, police said on Sunday. Around Rs 22.45 lakh rupees has been recovered from the accused.Police identified the accused as Nitin Sood (32) and Praveen Kumar (30). Deputy Commissioner of Police (West) Monika Bharadwaj said that on April 11, one Inderveer Singh reported that at about 9 am four persons including a lady came to his house and claimed themselves as Income Tax officers. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderThey showed their identity cards and informed him that they have information about unaccountable huge cash in his house. “They conducted the search of his house and seized Rs 48 lakhs cash. They prepared a seizure memo and took his signature and asked him to report to Income tax office after two days, along with the proof of money,” said DCP West. She further said that while leaving the house they also took away DVR of CCTV from his house on the pretext to ascertain persons visiting his house. With the help of CCTV installed at MCD Dustbin, the investigating agency identified the accused car and arrested the accused in 24 hours. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchings”Accused Nitin Sood did his graduation in zoology and started ayurvedic medicine shop in Sector 5, Rohini. He is a habitual drunkard. He was also arrested in robbery as well as in cheating case earlier,” said DCP West. Sood disclosed that due to the loss in the business, he took loans from several people on high interest. One of his friend Neha informed him that there is a huge unaccountable cash in the house of Inderveer Singh. On this, he along with his accomplices hatched a conspiracy and committed the incident. “Efforts are afoot to arrest the remaining accused and to recover the remaining cheated money,” police said.last_img read more

Worlds countries pledge support for Libyan transition at UN summit

More than 50 heads of State or government took part in the meeting, hosted by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at UN Headquarters in New York and organized as the months of conflict between pro-democracy groups and forces supporting the ousted regime of Colonel Muammar al-Qadhafi come to an end.Those attending include United States President Barack Obama, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and British Foreign Secretary William Hague, whose countries led the UN-backed air campaign to protect civilians from attack by Mr. Qadhafi’s forces. Officials from the National Transitional Council (NTC) of Libya, which have become the interim authorities, outlined some of their plans to the meeting – held just days after the Security Council authorized the creation of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) for an initial three-month period.Mustafa Abdel Jalil, President of the NTC, told the gathering that the key short-term challenges include eliminating the last pockets of pro-Qadhafi resistance, meeting the demand for reconstruction, and compensating families who lost loved ones during the months of conflict.In a statement issued after today’s meeting, participants commended the Libyan people for having “fought heroically for the respect of fundamental human rights, rule of law, dignity and freedom of expression.”They also voiced support for the NTC’s plans for the transition period and promised to mobilize international support in such areas as elections, constitution-making, human rights, security, gender issues and economic recovery.The participants urged the NTC to move swiftly to form an inclusive government “that reflects the full diversity of Libyan society and aims to build a new, united, democratic and pluralistic Libya in which human rights, fundamental freedoms and justice will be guaranteed.”The authorities must “fully abide by their commitment to respect international humanitarian and human rights law in the transitional process,” including protecting the rights of all minorities, including migrant workers from sub-Saharan Africa.They also noted that the UN and the Security Council should guide the international community’s efforts in supporting the transition, emphasizing that the transition must be a Libyan-led process.A “Friends of Libya” group – to be co-chaired by the interim Libyan authorities and either Mr. Ban or Ian Martin, the head of UNSMIL – will meet periodically in Tripoli, the capital, to support stabilization and reconstruction efforts.In his address to the meeting, Mr. Ban welcomed the installation of a new flag for Libya, which now flies outside UN Headquarters along with the standards of all other UN Member States.“We offer congratulations and best wishes for the future,” the Secretary-General told the representatives of the NTC. “For the past seven months, you have fought courageously for your fundamental rights and freedoms.“Women and young people were in the vanguard, demanding a say in the political and socio-economic life of their country. As you look to the future, I want you to know that the United Nations will support you in every way we can.”He noted that the challenges for Libya remain huge, and said the first priority has to be establishing peace and security across the country.“We are encouraged that so many Libyans, from so many communities, have laid down their arms and are working together to build their nation. We urge those that have not done so to join them.”In a separate meeting with Mr. Jalil, Mr. Ban described the extent of participation by Member States in today’s meeting “as a testament of the interest of the international community in the success of Libyan efforts to build a democratic and prosperous nation.” 20 September 2011A United Nations summit in support of Libya today backed the transition plans of the country’s new authorities and pledged their ongoing support to help the North African country establish the rule of law, uphold key human rights and promote both economic recovery and public security. read more

UN emergency fund allocates 15 million to support people fleeing Fallujah

Civilians in Fallujah, Iraq, are at extreme risk and need urgent help. Photo: OCHA Iraq OCHA indicated that the CERF funds will enable the UN humanitarian agencies in Iraq, including the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the Office of the UN Higher Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the World Health Organization (WHO), to quickly assist the newly displaced people.OCHA is working with the Government of Iraq to quickly set up camps to provide additional shelters. Humanitarian partners will also focus on relief efforts to assist women and children who are particularly vulnerable in the conflict. In addition, mobile psychological support teams are being established to provide specialized care for victims of the violence. The CERF funding will also enable health teams to provide critical care for newborn babies and children who have had limited health support and who have not yet been immunized. The UN Humanitarian Response Plan in Iraq has called for $861 million to address the needs of people affected by the current crisis. To date, the appeal is only 36 per cent funded, OCHA said. A further $65 million will be needed to respond to the current situation in Fallujah. This is expected to further strain already stretched resources and force humanitarian partners to reprioritize existing relief supplies and services, OCHA noted. Contingency stocks are nearly depleted, which could leave other communities in the country potentially vulnerable. While agencies have been preparing for the Fallujah situation for some time, the number of displaced people and the scope of their needs have outpaced humanitarian capacity, OCHA emphasized. Humanitarian update on FallujahIn a humanitarian update released earlier today, OCHA reported that more than 83,000 people have fled the besieged city of Fallujah and surrounding areas as of this past Saturday, and thousands more could still be on the move amid ongoing fighting. “People escaping Fallujah are in desperate need of assistance now, this minute. We must act fast before this situation becomes a humanitarian catastrophe. These funds are time critical; however they only offer a small portion of what is urgently needed,” said Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Stephen O’Brien, in a statement issued by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).“I call on donors to immediately support our humanitarian response and leverage this CERF allocation with additional resources so that together we can effectively address the growing humanitarian needs throughout Iraq,” he added.Since this past month, more than 85,000 people have been forced to flee the city, displacing families from their homes, communities and livelihoods. Those remaining in the city face dire shortages of food, medicine, electricity and safe drinking water, OCHA said. “The families who have managed to flee Fallujah have escaped with nothing: they need everything,” warned Lise Grande, Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq.“Humanitarian partners are working around the clock to provide shelter, water, health care, household kits and specialized support for the victims of gender and sexual-based violence. This CERF grant will allow us to rapidly scale up our efforts, so it could not be more timely,” she added.Temperatures in the region are averaging 115 degrees Fahrenheit and rising. Many people are unable to access clean drinking water, and shade is limited, while already vulnerable communities are more susceptible to outbreaks of communicable diseases and there is a real risk of a cholera outbreak, OCHA said.Response efforts will include improvements to hygiene and sanitation in order to help prevent the spread of disease. UNHCR distribution of emergency relief items for displaced families from Fallujah who’ve arrived in camps from Ameriyat al-Falluja. Photo: UNHCR/Caroline Gluck OCHA highlighted that since military operations led by Iraqi security forces to retake Fallujah in Anbar from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) began on 22 May, people have fled Fallujah in rapidly increasing numbers. Most people initially fled outlying areas of Fallujah, but on 7 June, reports were received of some families leaving Fallujah city itself, as military operations began to enter the city centre. In the past few days, tens of thousands of people have been allowed to leave the centre of town, OCHA said. “The sudden increase in displacement in early June follows both increased opportunities for families to flee as well as hundreds of other families demonstrating a willingness to take extremely high risks to try to escape, sometimes with grave consequences,” OCHA noted in the bulletin. There are reports of people drowning as they tried to escape, or being injured or killed by snipers or improvised explosive devices. Many families are separated during their escape, with men and teenage boys being separated from their families for security screening, OCHA said. The families still trapped inside Fallujah are thought to have only limited, if any, food, and there appear to be few sources of safe drinking water. The risk for disease outbreaks is high, OCHA noted.While it is not clear how many civilians remain in the city, OCHA said that UN estimates indicate there could still be thousands of families. “Nothing is more important than ensuring that civilians are protected and have access to life-saving assistance. The UN and partners continue to call on all parties to the conflict to do everything possible to meet their obligations under international humanitarian law,” OCHA said in the update. Emergency response is ongoing in multiple locationsMost displaced people from Fallujah have been taken to Ameriyat al Falluja, a town located about 30 kilometres south of the city, where the Government of Iraq and partners had previously prepared tents as well as water, sanitation and hygiene facilities. These camps are now full, although the Government and humanitarian partners are working to quickly set up others, including in the nearby towns of Khalidiyah and Habbaniyah Tourist City, OCHA said. People are also fleeing areas north of Fallujah towards the east, and are being hosted in local schools and in the Al Ahal camp.OCHA said that major efforts are being made to provide emergency assistance to the newly displaced, including shelter, water, food, basic household items and health care. Specialized activities for children and women are being established and mobile teams are providing psychological support.The UN has not been able to access Fallujah since it came under the control of armed opposition groups in January 2014. Humanitarian partners have worked with about 50,000 civilians remaining in Fallujah, although OCHA stressed that the number of displaced people is well above that planning figure and that the scope of the crisis has outpaced humanitarian capacity. “Contingency stocks are nearly depleted, every agency requires funds and there are few frontline partners,” OCHA stressed. “With rising temperatures and lack of shade and clean drinking water, outbreaks of communicable diseases are likely.” OCHA also emphasized that there is only limited support for newborn babies, and nearly all of the children who have been outside Government control have not yet been immunized. The low level of antigens, coupled with poor hygiene and substandard sanitation, raises the risk of disease outbreaks further. Prior to the most recent military operation, more than 75,000 displaced people from other locations within Anbar were already residing in camps near Fallujah in Khalidiyah, Habbaniyah and Ameriyat al Falluja.Humanitarian partners also continue to provide emergency assistance to other conflict-affected people, including in the transit sites Al Wafaa and Kilo 18 in western Anbar, OCHA said. read more

Ohio State mens volleyball ready to get back to the court against

The opening of any college season brings the chance for fresh faces to make an impact, if given the opportunity.The same could be said for the Ohio State men’s volleyball team, who is looking to get freshmen playing time in its first two home games of the 2014 season this weekend.“The biggest thing right now is just getting the new guys more experience,” said redshirt-junior opposite Andrew Lutz.With eight freshmen joining the team this year, the Buckeyes are expecting to keep improving and get the new guys more comfortable on the court starting Friday at 7 p.m. against Lees-McRae and Saturday against George Mason at St. John Arena.“I think we just need to get on the court and give some of the new guys some confidence,” Lutz said.The Buckeyes fell short at the Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Invitational in Hawaii last weekend. OSU went 0-3 in the tournament, falling to then-No. 14 Hawaii, then-No. 7 UCLA and then-No. 11 Penn State.Coach Pete Hanson said the weekend in Hawaii was a learning experience for the whole team.“We took 14 players to Hawaii, and nine of them had never been there before, and so I think when you have that many new faces, it is just a true learning experience,” Hanson said.The team took advantage of the tournament and used it as a great opportunity to gain skills against teams it will be seeing at the end of the season during playoffs, Hanson said.The Buckeyes are going to be focusing on themselves instead of worrying about other teams this season, Hanson said.“I think the slogan for this season is ‘It’s going to be about us.’ It’s how we play and not worrying so much about who the opponent is and what they have and don’t have,” Hanson said.After a long weekend in the Pacific, the Buckeyes are set for the season ahead and excited to be back on their home court.“We are going to play hard, with lots of energy,” junior outside hitter Michael Henchy said.Although Henchy said the team is ready for the rest of the year after three tough outings in Hawaii, the focus of the team is on both Lees-McRae and George Mason, and not underestimating their potential.“They are excited and fired up for the season and especially to play a school like Ohio State,” Henchy said. read more

British teenage girls are among the heaviest drinkers in Europe – and

British girls are among the worst in Europe for binge drinking, despite drinking less than previous generations, new research shows.The study for the World Health Organisation shows that teenage girls in England, Scotland and Wales take three of the top six places in a drinking league table comparing 36 European nations.And teenage girls in the UK are now more likely than boys of the same age to have got drunk at least twice, the figures show. The research compared the drinking habits of 15 year olds between 2002 and 2014.–– ADVERTISEMENT ––It found that in most nations – including those of the UK – the proportion of teens who have been drunk on at least two occasions has fallen.But teenage girls in the UK remain among the heaviest drinkers.While those in Denmark were the most likely to have been drunk at least twice – with 37.6 per cent falling into this category, Welsh girls were next, followed by Hungary, Scotland, Lithuania and England. In all these nations, at least 30 per cent of teenage girls had been repeatedly drunk – around twice the rates in Italy and France.The study led by the University of St Andrews shows that while drinking among British boys has fallen so far that it has vastly improved their rankings in European league tables, British girls are still among the heaviest drinkers.This is despite the fact the proportion of UK girls has halved over the 12-year period.It comes amid rising levels of anxiety among teenage girls, fuelled by social media, and rising levels of self-harm.The statistics show that in 2002, 54.7 per cent of English girls had got drunk at least twice previously – falling to 30.9 per cent in 2014. This left them sixth heaviest drinkers, compared with fifth worst in 2002.The position of Welsh girls remains unchanged since 2002, as second heaviest drinkers. This is despite the fact the percentage of girls getting drunk fell from 60.3 per cent to 33.6 per cent.And Scottish girls went from fifth to fourth ranking , with 32.9 per cent having got drunk twice when surveyed in 2014, compared with 51.8 per cent in 2002. The figures show that teenage boys in the UK are now less likely than girls to get drunk.In 2002, 55.1 per cent of boys in England had got drunk at least twice, but in 2014 the figure was 25.3 per cent – taking them from sixth to 18th place.  In 2002, 58.3 per cent of boys in Wales had been drunk at least twice, dropping to 28.2 per cent by 2014 – from third to thirteenth place. And the figures for Scotland show that in 2002, 51.9 per cent of teenage boys had been drunk at least twice, falling to 32.4 per cent by 2014.Prof Sir Ian Gilmore, chairman of the Alcohol Health Alliance, said drinking habits among girls and young women could be affected by rising anxiety levels, and by efforts to target female drinkers.He said: “There’s no doubt that we are seeing young girls and women feeling increasing pressure. But we are also seeing very aggressive marketing of drinks at female drinkers, especially via social media – for sweeter drinks and fizzy drinks.”Dr Jo Inchley, assistant director at St Andrew’s Child and Adolescent Health Research Unit, said: “We don’t know why we are seeing these gender differences, in some ways it is surprising because girls tend to respond more to health messages than boys do.“We do know that mental health issues are a big concern among adolescent girls, and coping could be one of the reasons why girls are binge drinking.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

GCSE pupils upset by exam question on rape story

One student, Hadiatou Barry, wrote a letter of complaint to AQA to say she was “horrified” to discover that the character Alice was sexually exploited later on in the story. An AQA spokesperson said: “There weren’t any references to sexual assault on our GCSE English Language paper. “An extract on the paper was from a story that features this later on – but this was an unseen extract so no-one had to read the whole story.  “We don’t think the choice of extract was inappropriate – but we’re sorry to hear that some people don’t agree, as we’d never want to upset anyone.” Herbert Ernest Bates was born in 1905 in Northampton and after a short career as a warehouse clerk, he became a prolific writer of short stories as well as plays, poems and essays.  He is best known for writing a series of short stories under the pseudonym “Flying Officer X” about the RAF. Many of his stories – including A Moment in Time and Fair Stood the Wind for France – were adapted into television series after his death.   Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. An exam board has apologised after a GCSE English exam used a passage from a book in which a character was raped. Pupils complained that the unseen text in their exam paper was taken from a story that later goes on to detail how a young woman becomes pregnant after being sexually exploited by her employer.The passage featured in Tuesday’s exam  – which was about a couple and their daughter Alice who sell produce to people in their local area from a van –  is an extract from The Mill, a short story by H. E. Bates, published in 1935. Students were asked to analyse the language used in the text  as well as its structure, and what feelings are evoked by its descriptions of Alice and her parents.Later on in the story, Alice’s parents send her to work at a mill where the she endures the unwelcome attention of her employer who rapes her, then dismisses her after she falls pregnant. The description of the rape was not part of the excerpt in the exam paper, but students nonetheless protested that the excerpt should have come with a “trigger warning”.  “Some people I know were actually disturbed and worried by the extract,” Alana Kingsley, a pupil from Lowestoft, Suffolk wrote on Twitter.   The letter, which she posted on Twitter, said: “Although I completely understand that AQA were not responsible for writing the fictional novel, you without a doubt had a vast amount of novels which you could pick from.  “This exam may have very well acted as a trigger for underlying mental health issues which could have possible effected and undermined their performance within the exam”.  She demanded that AQA take “appropriate measures” are put in place so that such “blunders” do not happen again.  The AQA board said it was “sorry to hear” that some pupils felt the unseen extract was inappropriate, adding that it would “never want to upset anyone”. It is not the first exam question that has sparked debate this summer. Last month the exam board EdExcel, which is owned by Pearson,  asked GCSE Biology students to identify the “gender” shown by a set of chromosomes, then told them to show how “gender is inherited” from parents. The board came under fire from scientists who pointed out that the correct term is “sex” rather than “gender” and that the difference between the two is integral to science.   “Sex” refers to biological differences between males and females including genetics, while “gender” refers to socially constructed roles that men and women are expected to play. read more

This man owns 11000 video games and is now a world record

first_imgMAYBE IT WAS getting his first video game, Cosmic Avenger, for Christmas at the age of 12, and then having to wait an entire year for the hard-to-land Colecovision console to play it on that made Michael Thomasson so determined to get his hands on every video game and system he could find.Now, 31 years and roughly 11,000 games later, Thomasson is the newly crowned world record holder for having the largest collection of video games. He is featured in a two-page spread in the just-released “Guinness World Records 2014 Gamer’s Edition”.“I have games on cartridge, laser disc. I have VHS-based games, cassette-based games,” Thomasson said, standing among the collection that fills the basement of his suburban Buffalo home.Along with the games, he has the devices to play them on, not only the Xboxes and PlayStations but obscure ones such as the Casio Loopy, the only game system specifically geared toward girls, which came out in Japan in 1995, and the Pippin, a dud released by Apple the same year.“Every game on it is awful,” Thomasson says of Apple’s foray into the gaming world. “It’s the least fun of anything in the house.”At the other end of the spectrum is the old Colecovision unit like the one that appeared under the Christmas tree one year after his grandparents gave him his first game for it. They had mistakenly believed his parents had gotten their hands on the playing system, which was a hot item that year. It stands to this day as the best present his parents ever gave him.“It’s my first love so it’s sentimental,” Thomasson said. But the games also were quality, with very little of the “shovelware” — mediocre, rushed releases — typical of many systems, he said.“They looked good, they played good. For the time they sounded good,” he said, “for the bleeps and blips of the 80s.”(YouTube: Michael Thomasson)Thomasson began collecting almost immediately, he said, but the path to the world record had a couple of restarts. He sold off his collection twice, first in 1989 to raise money for a Sega Genesis, then again to pay for his 1998 wedding. (“I was heavy into collecting when we married so she knew what she was getting into,” he says of his wife, JoAnn.)Since then, Thomasson has methodically rebuilt the collection, averaging two games per day on a strict $3,000-a-year budget which means never paying full price.He estimates the collection is worth $700,000 to $800,000.He hasn’t played every game. The father of a 5-year-old, Anna, Thomasson designs games and teaches 2D animation, game design and the history of video games at Canisius College in Buffalo. He also writes on the topic for magazines and books.“I probably get three hours of playing in a week,” he said. “If I’m lucky.”Guinness lists the number of games in Thomasson’s record-breaking collection at 10,607, though he said the number exceeds 11,000 now, a year after the official count and after discovering forgotten stashes of games after the counting crew left.Either way, it bested the previous record holder, Richard Lecce, who held the record first recorded in 2010 with 8,616 games.“My congratulations to a fellow collector,” Lecce, 39, said by phone from his Florida home upon hearing his record had fallen. “It’s very impressive and I’m very happy for him.”Lecce began collecting as a way to own all the games he couldn’t have as a kid, he said, and grew to appreciate their place in pop culture.Still an active collector, Lecce hasn’t counted his games in the last few years and doesn’t know what his number has grown to, but he has no immediate plans to challenge Thomasson for his old record.“It’s something I did for my own enjoyment. I applied for the Guinness book for my kids so that years from now they can look back and say, wow, my father was in the ‘Guinness Book of World Records,’” Lecce, a father of two and numismatist, a rare coin dealer, said.He’s happy to see more people collecting, and appreciating, video games.“Everything from the original artwork to the actual code that was written for the games to the actual box art and the whole marketing plan,” he said. “It’s just a very undervalued and underappreciated art form.”Read: Passenger leaves heartwarming message for staff at Dublin AirportMore: After their last one was stolen, the Simon Community get a new vanlast_img read more

ThinkGeeks Bulletproof Clipboard is one tough office supply

first_imgWe’ve seen some great products from the folks over at ThinkGeek. From Unicorn Meat to the Star Wars Wampa Rug, ThinkGeek is known for making laughable gifts we all secretly want. But the company has created something that can actually save your life, that is, if you ever got caught in the line of fire. The Bulletproof Body Armor Clipboard may just look like an ordinary clipboard, but, in reality, it can stop up to a 9mm bullet.Not only can the clipboard hold paper and important documents, but it can also stop a serious injury from happening thanks to its Level II body armor. At 3 lbs., the clipboard is a little heavier than your typical wooden alternative, but, as ThinkGeek puts it, “when you own a clipboard that can stop bullets, weight doesn’t matter anymore.”ThinkGeek also created an excellent 2.5-minute-long trailer showing the clipboard being tested by the ThinkGeek crew. If you skip to about the 1:20 mark, you’ll see a clip from the “upcoming minor motion picture” featuring a girl meeting for a blind date in an undisclosed location from an imitation Craigslist. You can watch the video below to see how it all goes down.The Bulletproof Body Armor Clipboard is available for $44.99.Read more at ThinkGeeklast_img read more

Eriscsson soffre les acrivités de télédiffusion de Technicolor

first_imgEriscsson s’offre les acrivités de télédiffusion de TechnicolorEricsson poursuit sa stratégie de diversification en s’intéressant aux chaînes de télévision et aux diffuseurs de contenus sur Internet. L’équipementier télécoms suédois vient de s’offrir une division de Technicolor, dédiée aux services de télédiffusion. Dans le cadre de son plan de diversification dans les services gérés, Ericsson a acheté la division services diffuseurs de contenus (Broadcast Services) de Technicolor. Une transaction à 19 millions d’euros, auxquels s’ajoute une option pouvant monter jusqu’à 9 millions d’euros en fonction du chiffre d’affaires qui sera réalisé en 2015. Bien décidé à prendre la place de leader sur le marché les services managés pour les chaînes de télévision, le géant suédois s’est offert les services de production, de régie et de postproduction des contenus vidéo de la firme française. Une division pour laquelle travaillent environ 900 personnes et dont les services sont présents au Royaume-Uni, en France, et aux Pays-Bas. L’acquisition devrait être finalisée avant l’été.”L’annonce de l’intention d’acquérir cette division rentre dans le cadre de la stratégie de services managés d’Ericsson et a pour objectif d’élargir ses capacités dans le domaine de la diffusion de contenu. Ericsson souhaite appliquer le business model des services managés des télécoms pour améliorer l’efficacité, l’innovation et augmenter les revenus des chaînes de télévision”, explique le groupe suédois dans un communiqué. Cité par les Echos, le patron d’Ericsson France, Franck Bouëtard, affirme que “demain, la télévision représentera 80 % du trafic sur les réseaux de distribution : nous sommes en pleine convergence”.Le 19 mars 2012 à 12:00 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Vancouvers spending on outside lawyers settlements with employees tops 600K

first_imgIn three years, the city of Vancouver has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on attorney fees investigating — and in some cases, settling — discrimination and harassment lawsuits filed against it by city employees.Now, the city is facing additional complaints by two city employees who say they were victims of gender discrimination and retaliation, among other claims.The first was filed in November 2017 by Assistant City Attorney Debra Quinn. The second complaint was filed earlier this month by Vancouver police Officer Julie Ballou.For both cases, and others like them, the city has hired outside attorneys to investigate the claims and either negotiate a settlement or move forward with a trial.Between 2015 and 2017, the city used outside attorneys for at least nine complaints, based on records provided to The Columbian under the state public records act.last_img read more

Wont You Be My Soviet Neighbor Mr Rogers Bizarre Appearance on Russian

first_imgIn 1987 Fred Rogers and his team went on a remarkable journey. They were leaving the cosy TV set of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood and trading net curtains for The Iron Curtain. This unassuming gentleman in his cardigan and tennis shoes, so beloved of U.S. audiences, was in many ways a definitive American. At that point the show had been running for over 20 years, and was set to last more than a decade after.Mister Rogers, a gentle Republican, represented a wholesome slice of life which for some was rather bland.Photograph of Mister Rogers in the late 1960s.In an article looking at new documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor, The Telegraph writes that “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood – there’s no getting around it – was as square as square could be… In one episode, they offered to give the children a sense of how long a minute was. They set an egg timer, and just sat there in silence, on air, for a whole minute.”Fred Rogers speaks before a United States Senate Commerce Committee hearing in support of public broadcasting, May 1, 1969.His presence in Red Square suggests a truly strange chapter in the history of American television and, as some of his Soviet hosts suspected but was never confirmed – espionage.Yet Mister Rogers was merely doing what he’d always done. Reaching out the hand of friendship in his own particular way, accompanied by the likes of puppet Daniel Striped Tiger and the very human deliveryman Mr McFeely, played by David Newell.A sweater worn by Rogers, on display in the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum of American History. Photo by Rudi Riet – Flickr CC BY SA 2.0Newell was also Rogers’ PR man, and it was him who’d suggested the Russian adventure. Their destination was Spokoinoi Nochi, Malyshi, which translates as Good Night Kiddies. Like Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, the series was a stalwart of national television that had been entertaining children since the Sixties.The New York Times reported on the junior version of East meets West, describing the Russian program as “a mixture of homey morals about manners and kindness, and creative animation involving everything from clay figurines to textured puppets that live out Russian fairy tales, old and new.”Photo of Fred Rogers as a senior in high school.Legendary journalist Ted Koppel had pointed out the similarity, inspiring Newell to mention a crossover to producers. And so Mister Rogers went to meet presenter Tatyana Vedeneyeva and her friends like Khryusha the piglet and Styopa the rabbit.Vedeneyeva returned the favor by guesting in Mister Rogers backyard. They didn’t end the Cold War but it was still a significant moment in TV history. Mister Rogers had entered an exclusive zone and overall things went smoothly.Rogers and François Clemmons reprising their famous foot bath in 1993. Photo by Dr. François S. Clemmons CC BY-SA 4.0That isn’t to say there weren’t bumps in the road. Some initial Moscow frostiness was reportedly thawed when Rogers began playing with Daniel the Tiger during talks. And when the crew wanted to film at a Russian doll factory the request was firmly denied.Producer Margie Whitman revealed to the Times, “They told us why we couldn’t go there, and then said that a few months ago they probably wouldn’t have been able to give us the real reason.”Rogers being presented the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush in the East Room of the White House on July 9, 2002.A key reason Rogers was granted permission could have been his relative inconspicuousness. Despite being part of American family life for decades, his profile outside the Land of the Free was pretty low.The Telegraph comments, “in the pre-internet age, even while soap operas, crime shows and sitcoms criss-crossed the Atlantic, children’s programming seldom traveled… Yet Fred Rogers, who died in 2003, was a figure of titanic influence on several generations of American children.”Rogers screens the tape replay with Betty Aberlin and Johnny Costa in 1969.Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood lasted for 912 episodes. The show and its central figure arguably lacked pizazz, though it did have an aspiring performer named Michael Keaton working behind the scenes.“[He] was one of the nicest, authentically good people you’ve ever met,” Keaton said in a 2014 ABC News interview. “Really good dude [with] kind of a sneaky, sly great sense of humor.”In covering Won’t You Be My Neighbor, The Telegraph wrote, “Its subject was a man who, as (director Morgan) Neville tells me, loved dirty jokes but would never tell one himself.”The Fred Rogers Memorial Statue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.Rogers sometimes used his familiar and trusted corner of the Public Service airwaves to highlight important issues. He would keep youngsters up to speed with current events, tackle thorny topics such as death and challenged racism.His legacy has its detractors, with some claiming “the entitlement and rage of the modern American adult is directly linked to Fred Rogers; that he’s the father of ‘generation snowflake.’”For Neville however, he’s a voice the American public needs. He made his documentary to promote that message of dignified conduct to the world. Neville wondered “Where’s this voice in our culture today? Where’s this voice advocating for civility and empathy and these kinds of things which are so rare. It was not a nostalgic instinct at all: it was how do I get this voice into 2018?”Read another story from us: The Real Catcher in the Rye – Factors Which Led to J.D. Salinger’s Life of SeclusionThe forthcoming movie You Are My Friend, starring Tom Hanks as Rogers, should promote the show in a way it never managed back in the day. And if viewers dig a little deeper, they’ll see a lot more than just a man in a cardigan.last_img read more

Tech Startups Are Prodding the Dinosaur That Is the Insurance Industry

first_img Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. October 21, 2015 Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Here’s a sentence you don’t read every day: Insurance is so hot right now.Entrepreneurs and investors have finally woken up to the opportunity in the insurance industry. At $831.5 million, investment in insurance tech this year is already up nearly 10 times what it was in 2010.The opportunity has been staring entrepreneurs and investors in the face for years. The first insurance companies in the U.S. were started in the 1700s, and that cottage industry has grown into one of the biggest markets and sources of capital in the world. Premiums in the U.S. insurance industry total around $1 trillion, or approximately 7 percent of gross domestic product. On top of that, insurance companies invest nearly $7 trillion in assets.And here’s the kicker about all that insurance money — it’s generated by millions of agents, with lots of paper, in processes that look much the same way they did 30 years ago.Related: Investors Are Poised to Disrupt the Tech-Averse Insurance IndustryIn my previous life as a McKinsey consultant, I advised the top insurance companies on projects that were, at their core, incremental. They were always about increasing the productivity of the agent-based sales force, or improving the efficiency of paper-based claims operations. In other words, what I was doing was putting the dinosaur on a diet and prodding it with a stick. What needed to be done was bring a whole new breed of animal into the insurance game.So I left McKinsey in 2013 to do just that and started a digital consumer insurance company, PolicyGenius. At PolicyGenius, we want to do for consumer insurance what TurboTax did for taxes: Make a complex and intimidating financial task easy enough to do it yourself online.While raising seed capital for my insurance tech company last year, the most common question I got from prospective investors was, “Why is now the right time for tech to disrupt insurance?” The obvious answer for those unfamiliar with the insurance industry is the Affordable Care Act, which was signed into law in 2010. The law created exactly the kind of macro shakeup that attracts entrepreneurs. Indeed, since 2010, 56 percent of all insurance tech startups are focused on health insurance, either delivering new employer brokerage models (Liazon, Zenefits, Benefitter), new consumer brokerage models (Gravie, Stride Health) or even new health insurance (Oscar). These startups are pushing the brick-and-mortar incumbents to deliver better services and providing much-needed options to consumers.Beyond the Affordable Care Act, there are other forces at work that have opened the floodgates, allowing creative entrepreneurs to reshape the insurance industry more broadly. These are the market disruptions I see:1. The end of an eraAmericans used to rely on their employers for retirement security. After 20 years of service, you’d get a gold watch and a pension to fund your sunset years. Then, in the 1980s, growing pension costs and a legislative change replaced the corporate pension with the 401(k) and gave rise to the modern retail investment and retirement industry.That shift — from employer to consumer responsibility — is exactly what’s about to happen to insurance. Employer-sponsored insurance is the legacy of an IRS ruling after World War II that allowed employers to deduct employee health insurance as a business expense and employees to receive that benefit as nontaxable income. Sixty years later, we have a sprawling and bloated system, where the extra employer layer adds billions of dollars of cost and empowers employers to make intrusive decisions about their employees’ healthcare. Add to that, the cost of health insurance premiums growing at four times inflation and workers changing employers far more often than they did 60 years ago, and you have a system that’s going to break.The cracks are already showing. The number of workers at small and medium-sized companies who get employer-sponsored health insurance has steadily declined since 2000. The CEO of Aetna has called for the creative destruction of healthcare and taking the employer out of the health insurance equation. Startups that can effectively step into that employer insurance void, the same way companies like Fidelity and Schwab stepped into the employer pension void, will enjoy a massive opportunity.Related: 3 Benefits of the Affordable Care Act Every Business Leader Needs to Know About2. A changing workforceIt’s no secret that the workforce is rapidly changing. The average worker changes employers every 4.6 years. And, more disruptively for insurance, more workers are finding themselves outside the typical employer relationship. Spurred by on-demand services like Uber and countless “Uber for X” startups, freelancers and independent contractors are projected to grow from 42 million people to 65 million in the next 5 years.These workers need individual insurance (like health, disability and life) and business insurance (liability and property). Insurance companies, and the traditional insurance agent model, are ill-suited to serve the self-employed and provide them with the advice and products they need to financially protect themselves and their families.Ask 100 freelancers how they navigate the insurance maze and they’ll all say same thing — with tremendous difficulty. Easing that difficulty for them represents a tremendous opportunity.3. An aging sales forceMost insurance in the U.S. is still sold by human agents, same as it’s always been. But it won’t be for long. The average age of an insurance agent in the U.S. is 59, and one-fourth of the industry’s workforce is expected to retire by 2018. In other words, insurance companies are standing on a burning platform. And they’re already starting to feel the heat.For example, life insurance ownership is at a 50-year low, not because the need has changed — in fact there’s a $20 trillion life insurance gap, but because the agent sales channel can’t reach the modern financial consumer. To their credit, insurance companies realize this reality, but the fact of the matter is that they can’t move as fast as startups can. So they’re investing in startups.  Insurance companies have dramatically increased their direct investments in tech startups to the tune of $1.8 billion since 2010. Much of this investment has gone to the first waves of financial technology: lending (Prosper) and wealth management (Learnvest, Betterment). But talk to any insurance company directly investing in startups, and you’ll learn that they’re hammers in search of nails, that is, smart entrepreneurs tackling the fundamental problems in insurance.4. Unmet needFinally, and most importantly for a mission-driven company, there is a tremendous unmet need for insurance in the U.S. According to a recent survey by the Federal Reserve, 47 percent of households couldn’t cover an emergency expense of $400. Insurance is intended to fill in this savings void for unpredictable emergencies. However, too many Americans have low savings and inadequate insurance, which leads to financial disaster. For example, health problems and disability contributed to half of all home foreclosure filings and over 60 percent of all personal bankruptcy filings. It’s not easy or sexy to sell insurance to middle America, but it’s an important problem to solve — and the first company to do it will be huge.These are the tailwinds that made me excited about insurance tech two years ago and which continue to drive my company forward. We recently closed a $5.3 million Series A round, which included the participation of insurance companies’ venture arms, including AXA Strategic Ventures and Transamerica Ventures. We, and our insurance partners, are excited to make insurance the next big thing in tech.Related: The 25 Best Companies for Employee Compensation and Benefits Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Register Now » 7 min readlast_img read more

First Impressions Count Just as Much Online

first_img Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now September 9, 2016 This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Enroll Now for Free There’s a lot of analysis and science that goes into wowing a digital audience. But despite the numerable studies indicating best practices, most website owners just tend to wing it. Not following best practices leads to a loss of traffic and conversion because the harsh truth is that, on average, more than half of your visitors will spend less than 15 seconds on your website. Let’s break down the things that can be done to compel them to stay a little longer.Be visual. Rich, evocative, beautiful, and professional-quality images are the cornerstone of the modern web. As a matter of fact, studies have shown that businesses can increase sales by increasing product image size. Video also has a massive impact on visitors. Adding a video to a landing page can increase conversion rates by 80 percent.Related: 7 Sources of Free High Quality Stock ImagesBe usable.While visual content like images and video are critical, none of these tactics work without a fluid web design. Visitors should find it easy to navigate across multiple pages. It should require almost no effort for them to identify and locate what they need. Be human. The copy used on a website can have an immediate effect on a visitors’ perception. Writing that is clinical, stoic, or “salesy” will tune readers out. In the book Web Copy That Sells, author Maria Veloso described research done on 20,000 pieces of copy that concluded that “editorial-style web copy outpulled sales letter-style web copy every single time.” Copy that appeals to users’ needs, emotions, and sensibilities will be significantly more effective in captivating them. Instead of riddling a site with jargon, corporate speak and pitches, it’s best just to be human. Showcase value proposition by being personable. As an example, Crowdsourcia’s website introduces itself to visitors by using the pictures and names of their team members. This complements copy that is natural, welcoming and friendly.Be valuable.Exciting, valuable and helpful content can keep visitors engaged. Using best practices such as having engaging calls-to-action, encouraging social sharing and facilitating discourse can rapidly convert a stranger on the information superhighway into a brand advocate.Be technical. Digital entrepreneurs put up websites and casually forget that their entire business is being facilitated by technology. They focus on great images, perfect SEO and killer content, but their sites are not secure. They’re also not cross-browser compatible or optimized for mobile, and loading a page takes a million years to complete.Related: 7 Tips for Feeding Your Website’s Need for SpeedBe mobile.Impressing visitors isn’t just about what’s on the page, it’s also how much care is put into its delivery. Back in 2014, it was estimated that 60 percent of all online traffic came from mobile devices. Half of all emails are opened on mobile devices. With mobile continuing to charge past desktop website access, it’s critical to design a site that is perfect for the small screen.Be secure. If a website sells merchandise or requires visitors to share sensitive information, much care should be taken to protect their data. Professional grade sites with expired certificates, security warnings when posting data to a server, and lack of password complexity rules, all can quickly turn a prospective buyer into a ghost. Ensuring a website has undergone a thorough security audit and reinforced its walls can help solidify its professionalism to visitors. Be compatible. Cross-browser compatibility is the bane of most web designer’s existence. That’s because every browser implements a web page slightly differently. There is a standard protocol but small variations in implementation can mean the difference between a stellar layout in Chrome and what looks like stitched tiles in Internet Explorer.Related: How Chrome Won the War of the BrowsersChrome has the largest global market share of all browsers, but the second largest, Internet Explorer, implements an identical website differently. At the very least, these two differing browsers should be fully supported.Be fast.Forty percent of people abandon a website that takes more than three seconds to load. That’s not a lot of time. Speed ensures a smooth experience. The key is that the technical frameworks that enable websites should be nearly unnoticeable, allowing visitors to focus on an organization’s story, value proposition, and content. 4 min readlast_img read more