IranMiddle East – North Africa Organisation News September 24, 2007 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Offices of hardline website closed RSF_en News News March 18, 2021 Find out more News June 9, 2021 Find out more Iran: Press freedom violations recounted in real time January 2020 After Hengameh Shahidi’s pardon, RSF asks Supreme Leader to free all imprisoned journalists IranMiddle East – North Africa Reporters Without Borders today criticised the closure of the offices of the hardline website Baztab.com, calling it a “troubling example of the government’s repressive policies.” The shutdown, by the Teheran state prosecutor’s office on 19 September, once more deprived Iranians of a website that disagreed with the government’s official line. “The list of closed and censored sites is growing, as are the regime’s instruments of repression,” it said.The closure came after seven months of conflict with the government when the legal effort by the president’s office to close the site was approved. Access to the site inside Iran was blocked between 12 February and 19 March after it violated a 27 November 2006 ban on putting out “inaccurate news,” “violating the national constitution” and “undermining personal privacy” or “national unity.” Baztab has carried reports on Iran’s nuclear industry and on corruption in which President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was criticised. The site, which is close to the former head of the Guardians of the Revolution, Mohsen Rezai, was ordered by the Council of State on 29 March to be filtered. The Iranian news agency ISNA said the site had been targeted by 15 lawsuits from Ahmadinejad supporters. Meanwhile parliament began debating yesterday whether to allow websites to be regulated in the same way as other media outlets.Another hardline website, Entekhab, has been the target of four filtering orders since last November. Help by sharing this information Call for Iranian New Year pardons for Iran’s 21 imprisoned journalists Follow the news on Iran to go further Receive email alerts February 25, 2021 Find out more
WinterWonderGrass Tahoe is going down March 31-April 2, 2017 at the base of Squaw Valley in California. The lineup includes Greensky Bluegrass, Yonder Mountain String Band, Leftover Salmon, The Infamous Stringdusters, Sam Bush Band, and Fruition. Also included in the stacked lineup are Mandolin Orange, Lil’ Smokies, Peter Rowan, Hot Buttered Rum, Dead Winter Carpenters, Dustbowl Revival, and so many more. Everyone Orchestra is also listed, without specific details as to whom will be included, along with The Bluegrass Generals, featuring Chris Pandolfi and Andy Hall, Brad Parsons Band, and Pickin’ on The Dead.The festival surrounds music, brews, and mountains, and is shaping up to be a beautiful entrance celebration to spring in California. The location is a gorgeous result of cataclysmic volcanic and glacial master planning. Lake Tahoe’s North Shore, in particular, is a stunning 180 degree panorama that vividly narrates the impact of that ancient earth shaping.The festival sold out both previous years. Early Bird Tickets are currently on sale, and we recommend that you get them here.[Photo via WinterWonderGrass Facebook]
Magnetism is an important force in astronomy, planetary science and life. Here are news items involving magnets and magnetic fields.These are offered for interested researchers. One should keep a distinction between observation and hypothesis, especially when dealing with theories or inferences about prehistory from present-day observations.MercuryLow-altitude magnetic field measurements by MESSENGER reveal Mercury’s ancient crustal field (Science Magazine).Ancient planetary dynamos, take two (Science Magazine). Commentary on the above paper.Within our solar system, the Earth and Mercury are in a class of their own, being the only rocky planets presently possessing global magnetic fields of internal origin. Given how different these fields are (see the figure), how these two planets got into this situation is a complicated story. With the recent discovery by Johnson et al. of ancient remanent magnetism trapped in crustal rocks dating as far back as 3.9 billion years ago on Mercury, and, on page 521 of this issue, by Tarduno et al. of a remanent magnetism for Earth dating back 4.2 billion years ago, the plot may thicken even more. Or could a tape rewind provide us with the clues we may have missed so far to explain the observations?VenusWhy we live on the Earth and not Venus (U of British Columbia). Article assumes long ages of magnetic fields, but shows the importance of magnetism to habitability. Relationships of magnetism to volcanism discussed.Thermal evolution of Venus with argon degassing (Icarus). “For a wide range of initial conditions, continuous evolution in the stagnant-lid regime predicts the correct amount of argon degassing, along with the absence of a global magnetic field, crustal and lithosphere thicknesses matching modern estimates, and volcanism consistent with the cratering record.”Earth & MoonUnlocking Earth’s ancient magnetic past (Science Magazine). “Earth’s magnetic field appears to have been fully operational a mere few hundred million years after the planet formed. This suggests an early start for plate tectonics and an ancient cosmic radiation shield that was important for habitability.” This is about the Tarduno paper (see next line).Earth’s magnetic shield is much older than previously thought: An older geomagnetic field suggests an early start to plate tectonics (Science Daily). Rests on assumptions of zircon ages; measured steady decline of Earth’s field strength argues against long age. Paper by Tarduno et al. on Science Magazine.First measurements taken of South Africa’s Iron Age magnetic field history: Ancient ritualistic village burnings opened the door to data collection (Science Daily). Article notes that “Earth’s dipole magnetic field strength has decreased 16 percent since 1840–with most of the decay related to the weakening field in the South Atlantic Anomaly–leading to much speculation that the planet is in the early stages of a field reversal.” A lot of assumptions go into the theories of reversals and their timing. See also Live Science and the BBC News.Destructive high-energy electrons streaking into Earth’s atmosphere from space (Science Daily); how “potentially destructive” electrons are captured by the Earth’s magnetic field. “We are learning about processes that can affect our lives directly, when active in our planetary environment,” one researcher says. “These same processes are probably happening throughout the universe and, with the tools at our disposal, we can study them in detail right here.”Magnetic field generation in the lunar core: The role of inner core growth (Icarus). Getting dynamo theory to work on the moon has been problematic.Earth’s magnetosphere: Discovery of zebra stripes in space resolves a half-century mystery (Science Daily); Could explain mysterious plasma waves in space.Mars‘Magnetic’ Discovery May Reveal Why Earth Supports Life and Mars Doesn’t (Space.com). Geodynamo and long ages assumed, as usual.Methane storage capacity of the early martian cryosphere (Icarus); “Serpentinization can explain the remanent magnetic field of Mars.”CometsPhilae’s First Days on the Comet (Science Magazine).Taken together, these first measurements performed at the surface of 67P profoundly modify our view of comets. 67P is nonmagnetized on a scale of less than a meter, with its surface layers composed of both sintered ices, which are hard in nature, and fluffy grains and pebbles of organic materials, possible remnants from the era of comet formation itself. Although it remains to be seen whether these observations hold true for all comets, the discoveries made by Philae—including these initial results—will continue to shape our view of the history of the solar system.The nonmagnetic nucleus of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (Science Magazine). Various factors “allow the possibility for a comet to possess a larger-scale remanent magnetic field,” but at this comet “on the meter scale, magnetic alignment in the preplanetary nebula is of minor importance.”Astronomy and CosmologyHow magnetism manifests itself in the universe (PhysOrg). Bryan Gaensler explains his obsession with cosmic magnetism: “Incredibly, magnetism is everywhere in the cosmos: planets, stars, gaseous nebulae, entire galaxies and the overall universe are all magnetic.”Binary star system precisely timed with pulsar’s gamma-rays (PhysOrg); “The companion’s magnetic activity affects the orbital period of the binary system.”Biggest explosions in the universe powered by strongest magnets: Some long-duration gamma-ray bursts are driven by magnetars (Science Daily).Observations have for the first time demonstrated a link between a very long-lasting burst of gamma rays and an unusually bright supernova explosion. The results show that the supernova was not driven by radioactive decay, as expected, but was instead powered by the decaying super-strong magnetic fields around an exotic object called a magnetar.Magnetospherically driven optical and radio aurorae at the end of the stellar main sequence (Nature). Northern lights on a star.‘Failed stars’ host powerful auroral displays (Science Daily); astronomers say brown dwarfs behave more like planets than starsBiologySpecial birds with specialized abilities (Evolution News & Views); how seabirds combine magnetic navigation with smell navigation.Illustra Media‘s new film Living Waters: Intelligent Design in the Oceans of the Earth shows a list of many animals unrelated by evolutionary ancestry that possess the ability to navigate by Earth’s magnetic field. Yet this force is so subtle, humans apparently lack the ability to notice it. It shows in detail how sea turtles use magnetic navigation, swimming solo for thousands of miles then back again to the nesting beach after years (sometimes decades) at sea, recalling magnetic “waypoints” in a magnetic map they inherited at birth.Human Health & TechnologyLexus unveils smoking hoverboard, uses magnetic levitation (PhysOrg). Nice if you can afford the magnetic concrete.Magnetic nanoparticles could be key to effective immunotherapy (Science Daily); new method moves promising strategy closer to clinical use.Magnetic pulses to the brain deliver long-lasting relief for tinnitus patients (Science Daily); depression treatment tool holds tremendous promise for patients with debilitating condition.Space radiation may fry astronauts’ brains (Science Magazine); this is what happens without the protection of an atmosphere or magnetic field.What an amazing force magnetism is—so integral to the atom, to the navigation of Monarch butterflies and implicated in the most powerful explosions in the universe. Electromagnetism is one of the four fundamental forces we learn about in school. We know what a force does, and how it behaves, but what is a force? How does magnetism act at a distance from the physical magnet you hold in your hand? Magnetism fascinated Michael Faraday, the creation physicist of Victorian Britain. His far-reaching discoveries have led to countless applications in health and technology (MRIs and hydroelectric generators, to name only two), but what is magnetism? We may not be able to answer that question fully, but we should be thankful it exists. It’s keeping us alive from the cosmic shooting gallery outside our magnetic shield. (Visited 28 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
What are Pangolins? Pangolins are the strangest animal you will ever meet, although you will likely see photos of them rather than the real animal unless you live in Africa or Southeast Asia. Their tough, overlapping, reptile-protective keratin scales make it look like a giant pinecone with a long, thin reptile-tail. Its profile looks very much like a miniature dinosaur and nothing like a mammal. Pangolins, are scaly anteaters in the order Pholidota, Greek for ”horny scale.” They are edentulous (toothless) and survive mostly on ants and termites captured using its extraordinarily long (6-to-7-inch), muscular, wormlike tongue that is almost as long as its body.Credit: Dave Brossard, FlickrThey are the only known living mammals with scales, which are structurally and compositionally very different from the typical scales of reptiles. The pangolin’s scales consist of hairs glommed together into large, overlapping shingles that cover all but their soft belly. The scales are soft in newborn pangolins, but harden as the animal matures. Its overlapping scales protect its body and its face when they’re both tucked under its tail. The sharp scales provide extra defense from predators. For protection the pangolin can curl up into a tight ball like an armadillo (the name pangolin is from the Malay word ‘pengguling,’ meaning “one who rolls up.”) They have poor eyesight, but a very acute olfactory system which gives them an incredible sense of smell.Classification and EvolutionPangolin in defensive posture (Wikimedia)Classification has been a major problem as documented by many past failed attempts. They were once classified with various orders of ant-eating mammals, the Xenarthra, which includes true anteaters, sloths, and the armadillos which pangolins superficially resemble. Newer genetic evidence, however, points to their closest living relatives as the Carnivora with which forms the clade Ferae. Other evolutionists have classified the pangolins in the order Cimolesta, together with several extinct groups, though this idea has also fallen out of favor since cimolestids were not placental mammals.A 2015 study found close affinities between pangolins and the extinct group called Creodonta. In short, pangolins have features of several diverse animals. This has stymied not only their classification, but also attempts to determine their evolution, a subject largely avoided due to almost no hint of transitional forms in the fossil record, although a number of extinct pangolins have been found.Evolution of Pangolin ScalesThe selective forces underlying the origin of this unique mammalian reptile-like scale trait remain a mystery, although observations of the eight modern species suggest a defensive armor function against predators. Choo, et al. proposed that pangolin scale evolution was partly “an innovation that provided protection against injuries or stress and reduced pangolin vulnerability to infection.” Choo, et al., sequenced its genome, finding the Malayan pangolin genome contains 23,446 genes and the Chinese pangolin 20,298, very close to the size of the human genome.The Just-So-Story for Pangolin Scale EvolutionRicki Lewis is a well-known genetics professor who authored the genetics textbook that I used to teach my college level genetics class. She reviewed the Choo, et al. study that attempted to understand the evolution of their scales, writing in her report in the new Genome Research Journal that the study “provides the basis for a ‘just-so story’ about how the pangolin – aka the scaly anteater — got its scales … the armor of the pangolin replaced part of its immune response.” Lewis also commented,Darwin and Lamarck pondered the advantages of the giraffe’s long legs and neck, while a few decades later Rudyard Kipling [humorously] explained how the leopard got its spots. [In short, humans painted brown spots on the leopard’s fur, so that the leopard would blend in with the environment and not be seen by its enemies] Today, genome sequencing is fleshing out what we thought we knew about some distinctive animal adaptations, from the giraffe to the leopard.She continues: the interferon epsilon gene which provides a “first line of defense” against skin infections is damaged in both pangolin species that Choo, et al. studied,as well as in their African counterparts. Yet it is fully functional in 71 other species of placental mammals, where it provides a “first line of defense” against skin infections. Several other interferon genes, which deal with infection, inflammation, and skin healing, are missing too. The Malayan pangolin has three, the Chinese pangolin two, yet other mammals a full set of ten.She then gives the just-so-story of how the scales evolved:Natural selection tells the tale. At some point in time, a few pangolins, thanks to chance mutations, had harder hair. Other mutations somehow guided those hairs to eventually overlap, providing shielding. Individuals whose hairiness began to become overlapping scaliness were less likely to succumb to bacterial infections, and thereby more likely to survive to pass on those traits. Perhaps the armor also made them more attractive and they had lots of pangolin sex, assuming their privates are reachable, passing on the desirable trait.Lewis continues with her just-so-story, concluding thatclues in the pangolin genomes … suggest strongly that the armor has replaced part of the immune response. The tightly-knit, tough scales deter not only predators, but keep the animal free of infection. Although it is intriguing to imagine reasons why animals are as they are – from the giraffe’s neck to the leopard’s spots to the pangolin’s armor – clues in DNA sequences can provide a broader and less biased view [in contrast to] those that have stood the test of evolutionary time to those relegated to the genomic junkyard.The problem with this story is that a major reason why pangolins do not survive in captivity is that they often die of disease. This is possibly because their immune systems have become severely compromised due to the mutations noted. Still, they can survive in the wild with their well-designed armor. Even in the wild in a protected environment, though, disease is still a problem. Nonetheless, the just-so-story ‘How the pangolin got its scales’ is, as Lewis notes, an imaginative tale not based on fact. The one factual justification for it appears to be the loss of one or more genes critical for effective immune defenses – evidence of genome deterioration and de-evolution, not the addition of new genetic information which evolutionary theory requires.Addendum: It is a sad commentary on human nature that pangolins are being slaughtered to the endangered level by superstitious beliefs. In Vietnam, pangolin scales, which are made of the same material as fingernails, “are used in traditional medicine to treat allergies and male impotence.” Phys.org reports that Vietnamese officials seized five tons of pangolin scales shipped from Nigeria in sacks of cashews to hide them from inspectors. Last month 26 tons en route to Vietnam were seized in Singapore. “Communist Vietnam is a hotbed for the illegal wildlife trade,” the article says, “where animal products from elephant ivory to rhino horn and tiger bones are consumed domestically and also smuggled abroad.” These folk remedies are worthless, but demand is driving noble animals toward extinction. —Ed.References Johnson, Jinny. 2001. 100 Things You Should Know About Mammals. New York, NY: Barnes & Noble, p. 31. Benton, M. 2005. Vertebrate Palaeontology, Third Edition. Oxford, NY: Blackwell Science, p. 348. Hutchins, Michael (Editor). 2003. Grzimek’s Animal Life Encyclopedia, Second Edition. Volume 16: Mammals V, “Pangolins.” p. 109. Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson/Gale Group. Choo, Siew, et al, 2016. Pangolin genomes and the evolution of mammalian scales and immunity. Genome Research. www.genome.org.The consensus can be wrong, and has been wrong numerous times, when it comes to evolution. Hutchins, Michael (Editor). 2003. Grzimek’s Animal Life Encyclopedia, Second Edition. Volume 16: Mammals V, “Pangolins.” pp. 107-113. Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson/Gale Group. Choo, Siew, et al. 2016, p. 1 Penzhorn, B. 2013. In: Mammals of Africa. Volume V. Carnivores, pangolins, equids and rhinoceroses (eds Kingdon, J. & Hoffman, M.), pp. 438–443. Rook, D.L.and J.P. Hunter. 2013. “Rooting Around the Eutherian Family Tree: The Origin and Relations of the Taeniodonta.” Journal of Mammalian Evolution. 21(1): 1–17. Halliday, Thomas J. D.; Upchurch, Paul; Goswami, Anjali. 2015. “Resolving the relationships of Paleocene placental mammals”. Biological Reviews: n/a–n/a. doi:10.1111/brv.12242. ISSN 1464-7931. Choo, Siew et al, 2016. Lewis, Ricki, 2016. How the Pangolin Got Its Scales – A Genetic Just-So Story. PLOS Blogs. https://blogs.plos.org/dnascience/2016/10/20/how-the-pangolin-got-its-scales-a-genetic-just-so-story/ Lewis, 2016. Emphasis added. Lewis, 2016. Lewis, 2016. Nick Ching-Min Sun, et al. 2019. Unprecedented account of mortality and morbidity in free ranging Formosan Pangolin (Manis pentadactyla pentadactyla). https://www.biorxiv.org/content/biorxiv/early/2018/05/17/325167.full.pdf.Dr. Jerry Bergman has taught biology, genetics, chemistry, biochemistry, anthropology, geology, and microbiology at several colleges and universities including for over 40 years at Bowling Green State University, Medical College of Ohio where he was a research associate in experimental pathology, and The University of Toledo. He is a graduate of the Medical College of Ohio, Wayne State University in Detroit, the University of Toledo, and Bowling Green State University. He has over 1,300 publications in 12 languages and 40 books and monographs. His books and textbooks that include chapters that he authored, are in over 1,500 college libraries in 27 countries. So far over 80,000 copies of the 40 books and monographs that he has authored or co-authored are in print. For more articles by Dr Bergman, see his Author Profile.(Visited 603 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Pangolin Scale Evolution: Another Just-so-Storyby Jerry Bergman, PhD
29 May 2007Limpopo province will spend R76-million on upgrading the international airport in Polokwane and domestic airports in Giyani and Thohoyandou in preparation for the 2010 Fifa World Cup.“We still have to do some work on improving conditions at the Giyani and Thohoyandou airports since these areas are going to be used to host some of the clubs for soccer practice sessions,” said the provincial minister for roads and transport, Justice Piitso.Presenting his department’s budget in Polokwane last week, Piitso said a further study was underway to investigate the possibility of turning Thohoyandou airport into an aviation academy.Work is also in progress to turn the Polokwane international airport into a state-of-the-art facility and logistical hub for both cargo and passenger transport.In 2006, the department spent R13-million to improve navigational aid and R10-million on the construction of part of the terminal building.“This year we have set aside R28-million for the completion of the terminal building, R31-million for the construction of infrastructure at the cargo hub and R17-million for the development of the Aero City,” Piitso added.The Aero City will include parking for cars, buses, taxis and rental cars, feeder roads and ring roads around the terminal building.It will also include water, sewerage and electrical networks for the terminal building area, passenger walkways and a wash bay and offices for car rental companies.“We have also successfully rationalised the three former airport boards – We now have one board for Gateway Airport Limited, charged with the responsibility of overseeing the turn-around of our airports,” Piitso said.“We believe that this will bring about efficient and effective management of these important institutions.”“Border-free” tourismEarlier this month, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Mozambique signed agreements to share the tourism spin-offs of the 2010 Fifa World Cup, through “border free” tourism packages.The Limpopo Tourism Parks Board, Zambia National Tourists Board, Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and Mozambique signed the agreement at the Tourism Indaba in Durban.Together, the parties are called the Limpopo-Zambezi Destination.The cooperation is premised in the view of the World Cup as an opportunity to position the region as a tourist destination of choice for visitors.The Limpopo-Zambezi Destination will undertake tourism research and collect data and statistics to help them gain better understanding of the profile of the present travellers and the needs of future market sectors.Some of the undertaking that would take place includes the branding for Limpopo-Zambezi Destination, and joint marketing strategies in support of the package tours.Also high on the agenda, was the easing of border formalities to ensure that the passage of travellers through border posts is swift and trouble free.Source: BuaNews
The station has been granted a licence to broadcast for a full year by the Independent Communications Authority (Icasa), an achievement the station’s management and staff consider a victory for both themselves and the township at large.“This television station will make South Africa proud. It’s a creation of the people of Soweto for the people of Soweto,” SowetoTV’s secretary, Meshack Mosiya, said at the launch of the station on 1 July.The television station, which occupies two classrooms at the school, will offer community-oriented content, such as documentaries on social issues, as well as programming about music, poetry, HIV/Aids and tuberculosis.Run largely by volunteers, SowetoTV first broadcast in July 2005 for eight hours a day for a month, with a second one-month run taking place in December 2006.SowetoTV chief executive, Tshepo Thafeng, said the idea to start a community television station was hatched in 2000, and the station had encountered “ups and downs” until Icasa issued a licence to broadcast for a month in 2005.He hoped that over the coming year, the station would develop into a fully commercial enterprise.“The main objective of the station is to educate, inform and entertain the people of Soweto. It will be the voice of the voiceless covering issues that affect the people of Soweto,” Thafeng said.Mosiya said various organisations had chipped in with much-needed help to make the station a success, particularly Urban Brew Studios, which provided essential technical support.“The station will benefit the people of Soweto in many ways. It will also create job avenues for the youth of Soweto and it will develop skills in television broadcasting and in fields such as music and other performing arts,” Mosiya said.It was not set up to compete with broadcasters like the SABC or e.tv, but was meant to complement these stations, according to Mosiya. “We actually need their support to make this community station a success.”The station is available across Soweto on the UHF, bang after the e.tv frequency. However, the signal in some parts of the township, like Mofolo, Phiri and Dobsonville, was weak on Sunday.Deon Botha, the advertising sales manager, said the technical team would work flat out on Monday to rectify this.“Our technical team will identify all those areas in Soweto where the signal is weak and we hope all areas in Soweto will receive a clear signal,” he said.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest “Transform: Purpose To Action” was the theme of this year’s National FFA Convention. 27 members of the Miami East-MVCTC and Milton-Union-MVCTC FFA chapters were in attendance at the convention in Indianapolis. Those members included from Miami East-MVCTC FFA were Elizabeth Bair, Liza Bair, Ethin Bendickson, Kylie Blair, Keagan Carsey, Jessica Copeland, Luke Gilliland, Jessica Gillum, Jessica Hicks, Rachael Hodge, Weston Hodge, Savannah Holzen, Kearsten Kirby, and Abbey Koontz. From Milton-Union-MVCTC FFA were Daniel Albaugh, Destanie Brown, Joel Cress, Dylan Cross, Abby Hissong, Emily Hornberger, Jacob Hornberger, Webb Kress, Jessica Leffew, Eryn Oldham, Kamron Paulus, Liz Renner, and Rachel Thompson. Also joining the members during the trip was the Arcanum-MVCTC FFA Chapter and its members.More than 64,000 members, parents, and guests were in attendance at the National FFA Convention. Previous conventions were held in Kansas City, Missouri and Louisville, Kentucky.Convention activities included attending several convention sessions were members where inspired by motivational speakers such as the 2015-2016 National FFA Officers and motivational speakers author, and long-distance swimmer Diane Nyad, and retired NFL player and now farmer Jason Brown.Attendees enjoyed attending the Cole Swindell and Chris Young concert, World’s Toughest Rodeo, Buckeye Bash Dance, Dr. Jim Wand Hypnotist Show, Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Museum, and NCAA Hall of Fame. Members also attended the FFA Shopping Mall and Career Show. Indiana Governor Mike Pence addressed the convention during the American FFA Degree session.Milton Union FFA at National FFA ConventionTwo Miami East-MVCTC FFA members competed in the National Agriscience Fair with their research project. Kylie Blair and Jessica Gillum competed in Division 3, Environmental Sciences with their project, “Does Clean Water Mean Clean Soil?” They placed 6th in the nation.Miami East-MVCTC FFA received a Three-Star National Chapter Award, the highest award bestowed to an FFA Chapter. The chapter was selected for this honor based on its activities during the previous school year, in the areas of student, chapter and community development.Past Miami East High School graduates Madeline Davis, Colin Gump, Grant Hodge, and Cody Reid received their American FFA Degrees. The American FFA Degree is the highest degree awarded by the National FFA Organization and recognizes members’ ability to demonstrate leadership abilities and outstanding achievements in agricultural business, production, processing, and service programs. Recipients received gold American FFA Degree key, wallet ID card, and a certificate to commemorate the achievement.Thank you to Mrs. Betsy Martin, Mr. Brian Pohlman, and Mrs. Marie Carity for chaperoning the trip. Additional appreciation goes to the administration at Miami East Local Schools, Milton-Union Schools, Arcanum Schools, and the Miami Valley Career Technology Center.Attending from the Milton-Union-MVCTC FFA Chapter were (L to R) Dylan Cross, Daniel Albaugh, Webb Kress, Rachel Thompson, Emily Hornberger, Eryn Oldham, Liz Renner, Abby Hissong, Jessica Leffew, Destanie Brown, Joel Cress, Jacob Hornberger, and Kamron Paulus.Attending form the Miami East-MVCTC FFA Chapter were (front row, L to R) Rachael Hodge, Jessica Hicks, Kearsten Kirby, Savannah Holzen, Elizabeth Bair, Jessica Gillum, Kylie Blair, (back row, L to R) Weston Hodge, Luke Gilliland, Liza Bair, Ethin Bendickson, Jessica Copeland, Keagan Carsey, and Abbey Koontz.
Last week, iPhone developers were taken by surprise when Apple unceremoniously removed their ability to promote their “mature” applications (ages 17+) using promo codes. These codes allow application creators to raise awareness about their work by sending out free copies of apps to select individuals, such as those working in the media, in the hopes of having their new app reviewed. Now it seems that Apple has reversed this earlier, controversial decision and is allowing promo codes once again. But we have to wonder: why were they ever removed to begin with?Last Week: Promo Codes YankedPerhaps the most confusing element of last week’s policy change were Apple’s new rules which counted any application containing a built-in web browser as needing to be rated 17+ simply because it would allow the user to access the internet. (Ironically, the iPhone’s built-in Safari web browser didn’t count). Also, other potentially objectionable applications seemed to be rated inconsistently with regards to their content. For example, the risqué “Wobble iBoobs” is listed as “not rated” while e-book reader Eucalyptus was rated mature because you could use it to view a copy of the “Kama Sutra” if you so desired. As the developer of the bookmarking application Instapaper noted at the time, the current ratings form is too vague since any developer who offered “unfiltered internet access” via a built-in browser could technically check off all the descriptions on the ratings form’s list of mature content types. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting sarah perez Tags:#Apple#Features#NYT#web Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Although cutting off access to promo codes wouldn’t have stopped developers from giving out free copies of their apps – other methods like distributing ad-hoc builds and iTunes gift certificates were still available – it certainly made the process that much more difficult. Plus, it was unclear as to why the policy was ever enacted in the first place. After all, the promo codes aren’t typically used to entice children to come test out “mature” applications – they’re mostly used to market the apps by providing copies to reviewers or to potential new users by way of contests or other events. Once Again, App Store Policies QuestionedAfter some heavy discussion in the blogosphere, it appears that Apple has now quietly reversed their earlier, incomprehensible policy. According to TUAW, several developers are reporting that they are once again able to request codes for the 17+ apps. While we’re glad that this time Apple has decided to listen to their developer community, that isn’t always the case. And this is by no means the first glitch to arise in the Apple iTunes App Store’s system since it launched. The company has come under fire in the past for approving clearly horrific applications by accident while lagging behind on approval of others without providing clear communication as to why. Developers are also frustrated because Apple doesn’t provide them with ways to ask about App Store rejections, in some cases only sending cryptic emails like this one simply stating that the app was not “consistent with the criteria considered in our approval process.”Were Promo Codes Really a Problem to Begin With? While on the surface, Apple’s prior decision to regulate the mature iPhone applications by disabling promo codes seems innocuous enough – protect the children, right? – the way they went about it came across as over-zealous and not very well-thought out. Besides, one has to wonder why they ever decided promo codes were an issue in the first place. Were these codes really being used to corrupt young innocent minds by giving them free copies of adult-themed iPhone apps? We think not.Where Is Apple Going with “Mature” Apps?If Apple is truly concerned about children’s access to mature content, they’ll need to come up with a better system than what they currently offer. They can either play the role of content police (much as they do now) or they can create a new system where ratings are consistent, parental controls are within easy reach, and perhaps iTunes accounts themselves are even categorized as belonging to an adult or a minor.It’s almost certain that Apple is considering the possibilities of this sort of system – only last month they launched their new “mature content” warnings that appear when updating your apps. That system needs tweaking, however, as it doesn’t bother to inform you which apps are “mature” out of all those receiving an update. Still, these incremental changes as to how Apple is treating mature apps point toward an overall goal of creating a system where both mature and non-mature content can safely reside side-by-side. There’s no doubt that Apple is interested in expanding their lineup of 17+ apps – those would be sure to be hot sellers capable of bringing in large amounts of additional revenue to the company. Still, Apple needs to be more careful in how they go about implementing these sorts of changes. It would almost be better if they would simply re-launch the entire ratings system and accompanying policies in one go as opposed to messing with these minor – and sometimes haphazard – updates along the way. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ What ‘missteps’? CIGNAL 118 – GAMBOA COFFEE 51CIGNAL HD 118—Raymundo 17, Villarias 17, Jose 15, Bartolo 14, Sara 10, Perkins 9, Bringas 9, Arboleda 6, Potts 6, Cahilig 6, Batino 4, Sumalinog 3, Arong 2, Atkins 0.GAMBOA COFFEE MIX 51—Acibar 10, Acuña 9, Montuano 8, Dadjilul 5, Jumao-as 4, Vidal 3, Avenido 3, Padilla 2, Knuttel 2, David 2, Lacastesantos 2, Sarangay 1, Riva 0, Arellano 0.Quarters: 27-17, 50-24, 90-35, 118-51CEU 72 – BATANGAS 70CEU 72 – Ebondo 26, Uri 10, Wamar 9, Aquino 8, Intic 6, Casiño 4, Jeruta 3, Arim 2, Cruz 2, Manlangit 2, Guinitaran 0.BATANGAS 70 —Ablaza 16, Saitanan 12, Sedurifa 9, Bautista 8, De Joya 8, Dela Peña 7, Isit 4, Laude 4, Ragasa 2, Anderson 0, Mag-isa 0, Mendoza 0.Quarters: 23-13, 37-33, 56-50, 72-70Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Playing with ‘a lot of joy’ key to Ginebra’s Game 3 win, says Brownlee Cignal HD refused to let up even after a strong start as it recorded a 118-51 mauling of a listless Gamboa Coffee Mix squad Thursday in the 2017 PBA D-League Foundation Cup at Ynares Sports Arena.Pamboy Raymundo and Jason Perkins led the way early before Byron Villarias and Jeremy Bartolo put the finishing touches in a record 67-point win margin that shattered the previous mark of 64 set by NLEX in beating Zambales M Builders three years ago.ADVERTISEMENT Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ WATCH: Firefighters rescue baby seal found in parking garage 1 dead in Cavite blast, fire Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken LATEST STORIES 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 Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken MOST READ View comments World’s 50 Best Restaurants launches new drinking and dining guide “My reminder was just to be disciplined on our execution,” said Cignal coach Boyet Fernandez, who also mentored the NLEX squad that set the previous mark.Cignal climbed to 4-2.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutLater, Rod Ebondo sparkled on both ends of the floor down the stretch as Centro Escolar University hammered out a tight 72-70 victory over Batangas for its breakthrough win.The Congolese center drilled the go-ahead putback with 18.1 seconds to play to give the Scorpions a one point advantage before thwarting Joseph Sedurifa’s attempt in the dying seconds to preserve the victory.” —WITH REPORTS FROM KRISTOFER PURNELL, CARLO ANOLIN Don’t miss out on the latest news and information.