Bill Gates to receive honorary degree from Harvard University

Friday, March 23, 2007

Bill Gates, co-founder and chairman of Microsoft Corporation, will be presented with an honorary degree from Harvard University, on June 7, during the university’s 356th commencement proceedings. Gates is to deliver the commencement address for the event.

Although Gates enrolled at Harvard in 1973, he left soon after to focus on the development of Microsoft. Gates is, nonetheless, a member of the Harvard Class of 1977.

In a Harvard University Gazette article announcing the commencement event, the accomplishments of Gates, in both business and philanthropy, were highlighted.

“I am very pleased that the Harvard community will have the opportunity to hear from Bill Gates on June 7,” said Paul Finnegan, president of the Harvard Alumni Association. “His contributions to the world of business and technology, and the great example he has set through his far-reaching philanthropy, will rightfully put him on center stage in Harvard Yard. I look forward to greeting him in June.”

In 2000, Gates founded, with his wife, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (B&MGF). A charitable foundation, the B&MGF focuses on worldwide health care and poverty issues. The foundation manages currently more than $30 billion in endowments.

Founded in 1636, Harvard University is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States.

Restrictions imposed in China textile trade with U.S.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

In an effort to ease complaints by the U.S. and Europe about a heavy influx of low priced Chinese goods, China will raise export tariffs on 74 categories of textile products in June. This follows plans from the U.S. to impose quotas on Chinese textiles and clothing.

Products likely to see an increase from the Chinese move include synthetic fiber shirts, trousers, knit shirts and blouses, cotton shirts, and combined cotton yarn. Last week, similar restrictions were imposed by the U.S. on cotton trousers, knit shirts, and underwear. Currently, a 2.5 cent charge per item is imposed; the new tariff will raise this to the equivalent of 12 cents per piece now. While this is a fourfold increase, it is not expected to affect consumer prices. Because of this, some doubt the tariff will have any effect on correcting the trade imbalance.

This move is in response to U.S. trade quotas imposed due to concerns that increased Chinese goods would put U.S. textile manufacturers out of business. According to Auggie Tantillo, executive director of the American Manufacturing Trade Action Coalition, a textile industry group in the U.S., the move will preserve 10,000 U.S. jobs. The new U.S. trade quota will limit the growth of Chinese textile imports to 7.5 percent compared with shipments over the past year.

Prior to January 1, a global quota system helped regulate the trade. With the quota system gone, fears have arisen that a flood of Chinese goods could undercut U.S. competitiveness in the market. China is able to market its goods cheaply due to an artificially weak yuan. The U.S. Treasury criticized the China yuan policy as “highly distortionary”, posing a major risk to China’s economy itself and to global economic growth. They challenged China to revalue its currency to bring it to a level they believe will allow fairer competition between global manufacturers.

China has disputed the charges of the U.S. Treasury. Chinese Commerce Minister Bo Xilai said, “I believe they are not reasonable”.

Laura Jones, a representative of large retailers, also criticized the move, saying “These restrictions on imports from China will do absolutely nothing to help the U.S. textile industry — and the government knows it.”

China has seen a boom in economic growth in recent years due to growing trade surpluses with the West, but economists worry that the trade gap will cause longer term global economic problems. China’s textile and apparel exports are the most noteworthy example, with exports up over 1,000 percent in some categories this year and the rapid loss of marketshare and jobs by U.S. textile manufacturers.

Beginning in 1978, the Chinese economy has been transforming from a Soviet-style centrally planned economy to more of a free market style system, under the rigid political control of Communist Party of China.

To this end, the government has leveraged foreign trade to stimulate economic growth. The result has been a fourfold increase in GDP, making China the sixth largest economy in the world. By 2012 the People’s Republic of China may have the highest GDP in the world.

According to U.S. statistics, from 1999 to 2004 China’s trade surplus with the U.S. doubled to $170 billion. Wal-Mart is China’s seventh largest export partner, just ahead of the United Kingdom.

However, the gains from their “socialist market economy” have not been without problems. The Chinese leadership has often experienced the worst results of socialism and capitalism: bureaucracy, lassitude, corruption, and inflation. Inflation rates have been an on-going challenge, reaching as high as 17% in 1995.

Environmental deterioration is a longer-term threat to economic growth. In 1998, the World Health Organization reported that China had seven of the 10 most-polluted cities on Earth. Another concern among some economists is that China’s economy is over-heating, and due to its global economic expansion this could have major repercussions among other nations.

Typically, wages have been low and working conditions poor, with workers living in restrictive dormitories and working at boring factory jobs. However, recent labor shortages have started improving conditions, and raising the minimum wage towards the equivalent of 100-150 US dollars per month. The labor shortages are in part a result of a demographic trend caused by strict family planning.

  • “Economy of the People’s Republic of China” — Wikipedia, May 22, 2005
  • “China raises tariffs on textile exports. Beijing hoping to counter criticism from U.S., Europe.” — CNN, May 21, 2005
  • “China to increase export tariffs” — CNN, May 19, 2005

Times To Call In Air Conditioning Service In Cape Coral, Fl For An Inspection

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byAlma Abell

Since the air conditioning is a fundamental component of temperature control in Florida, it has to be functioning properly. So, it is important to ensure that it is regularly maintained during the entire year to help prevent a breakdown. These are some times in which you should get your air conditioning unit looked at.

One of the times in which you should contact an Air Conditioning Service in Cape Coral FL to get your unit checked out is at the start of the summer season. This check will help to ensure that your air conditioning unit is ready to go when it needs to be fired up. Because it has been sitting idol over a period of time, you need to make sure that it is full of coolant and that it is working properly.

Another time in which you need an inspection is if you suspect that your air conditioning unit is not functioning properly during the season. The lack of air flow, the lack of ability to maintain temperature, constant cycling and an increase in your electric bills can indicate that something is wrong. Any issues need to be checked out immediately or the problem can get worse as the unit struggles to operate under adverse conditions. This can cause a major breakdown and the cost of a replacement unit rather than just the bill for a repair.

You also need to contact an Air Conditioning Service in Cape Coral FL if your are buying or selling your home. If you are buying, you want to make sure that the system is functioning properly without any issues. While a home inspector will give a cursory inspection of this system, it is important to have a full inspection to figure out if there are issues that need to be addressed. If you are selling your home and leaving the area, you will need to make sure your unit is prepared for the period it won’t be operating.

These are some of the times in which to get your air conditioning inspected.

Japan raises severity level of crisis; efforts to cool damaged nuclear power plant continue

Friday, March 18, 2011

As the nuclear crisis in Japan’s crippled Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant appears to worsen, Japan’s nuclear safety agency raised their assessment of its severity from 4 to 5 on the 7-level International Nuclear Event Scale, the same rating given the 1979 Three Mile Island crisis. Japan’s Prime Minister, Naoto Kan, said bluntly that the situation at the nuclear power plant was “very grave”. Weather forecasts indicate changing winds may begin moving radiation closer to Tokyo by March 30.

Efforts thus far to cool nuclear fuel in the reactors and the spent-fuel pools has produced little if any success, contends United States government officials.

Engineers are working frantically to connect electrical power to two reactors in the plant, as well as to restart the cooling systems and prevent overheating of fuel rods. Tokyo Electric Power Co. stated that it hopes to reconnect a power line needed to restart water pumps to the No. 1 and No. 2 reactors by Saturday morning. However, a TEPCO official cautioned that if the water pumps were damaged by the tsunami, they could fail to restart.

The extent of the damage to the plant’s reactors is still unclear. Japanese officials have concentrated on cooling spent fuel rods in Reactor No. 3’s storage pool. On Friday, however, steam was seen rising from Reactor No. 2., where an explosion occurred on Tuesday. Additionally, engineers said on Thursday that the steel lining of the storage pool at Reactor No. 4 and its concrete base seemed damaged, as attempts to refill the pool with water became increasingly difficult.

In a briefing on Friday, Philippe Jamet, a commissioner at France’s nuclear regulator Autorite de Surete Nucleaire, said, “We must avoid being overly optimistic. This will likely take human intervention like going into control rooms to reconnect valves.”

Wikinews Shorts: December 9, 2008

A compilation of brief news reports for Tuesday, December 9, 2008.

 Contribute to Wikinews by expanding these briefs or add a new one.

The United States media group Tribune Company has filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday as it struggled to sort out its US$13 billion debt. It is the second-largest newspaper publisher in the United States, responsible for the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, among others.

The firm has been hit hard by the industry-wide slump in newspaper advert revenues this year. Sam Zell, the billionaire who owns Tribune, took out large loans in order to buy the firm back in June of 2007.

The United States Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection law states that a company can continue trading whilst it sorts out its finances.

Sources

  • “US publisher in bankruptcy move” — BBC News Online, December 8, 2008
  • “Tribune files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy” — MarketWatch.com, December 8, 2008

 This story has updates See Quebec’s Liberal premier Jean Charest wins third term 

The Quebec general election is underway in the Canadian province of Quebec. Premier Jean Charest called the elections, saying he needed a majority to guide Quebec through a period of economic difficulties caused by the worldwide financial crisis.

Polls indicate that the Charest may obtain a majority, with support for his Quebec Liberal Party increasing to 45%, while support for the Parti Québécois remains at around 30%.

The polls will close at 01:00 GMT (20:00 local time), and the results will probably come in soon after that.

Sources

  • “Quebec voters head to the polls” — BBC News Online, December 8, 2008
  • “Quebec votes in provincial elections” — Agence France-Presse, December 8, 2008

The United States government is reportedly close to an agreement for a US$15 billion bailout plan for the country’s three largest auto firms.

According to a draft obtained by the Associated Press, the deal would give loans to Detroit‘s struggling Big Three automobile manufacturersFord, General Motors, and Chrysler — but under the condition that the auto industry restructures itself to survive. Another condition is that the incumbent US President, George W. Bush, would appoint an overseer to supervise the effort.

Analysts suggest that the agreement could be signed into law by the end of this week.

Sources

  • “White House cool to plan for auto bailout” — MSNBC, December 8, 2008
  • “US car bail-out nears agreement” — BBC News Online, December 8, 2008

India set to install panic buttons on buses to combat sexual assault

Friday, May 27, 2016

The Indian Government announced on Wednesday they will issue a notification to ensure all buses are fitted with panic buttons to prevent sex-related violence occurring on buses in India. The motion was introduced by Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari. Installation of the buttons is set to become mandatory on June 2.

Tests are under way on 20 buses running from Rajasthan to New Delhi. Buses are to have panic buttons, a GPS-enabled vehicle tracking device, and CCTV cameras. The new buttons are located at the front doors and when pressed, a police control room has the ability to view live footage recorded inside the bus.

Last month, the government announced that as of 2017, mobile phones can’t be sold in India without a panic button. With the press of a single key, the panic button alerts emergency services that assistance is required.

Since a fatal sexual assault three and a half years ago on a bus in New Delhi, accompanied by increased rates of sexual assault, the government has been pressured to help women avoid the dangers of sexual assault. The bus sexual assault three and a half years ago resulted in India-wide protests, and laws regarding sexual assault were overhauled.

According to India’s National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), in 2014 New Delhi reported 1,813 rapes, more than any other Indian city. In more than 80% of rapes across India, the victim knew the rapist. In data from 2013, the rapists in 539 cases were parents, in 2,315 cases other relatives.

In 2012 the NCRB said the country had 24,923 reported rapes. However, this number grew over the following year, with 2013 seeing 33,707 reported.

In 2013, NCRB said New Delhi saw 1,636 rapes reported, with an Indian average of 92 women per day. The New Delhi cases alone account for more than four per day.

How To Whiten The Bikini Line Naturally?}

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Submitted by: Wendi Chan

The bikini or pubic line is that area between the thighs that is exposed when a woman dons her bikini. Embarrassment can result when this area is darkened which cause some ladies to feel less confident. There are a number of reasons for darkened bikini lines; this can either be due to being exposed in the sun for too long, constant friction from underwears, genetics, shaving or dead skin buildup. But the good news is you dont have to settle for this because there are some easy measures to keep the bikini line lighter.

Cucumber Juice

This vegetable actually has skin lightening properties which can also soothe irritations caused by repeated friction. Squeeze out the juices from cucumbers and apply it on the bikini area and leave this on for couple of minutes before washing. This will help the skin to eventually lighten after a few weeks.

Yogurt and Gram Flour

Mixing these two in the right amounts that can create a paste can actually be a good bikini line whitening solution. You can even add milk and turmeric for better results.

Lemon Juice

One of the most popular bleaching ingredients in nature is lemons. They are simple and on their own they can already do the job. Slice a piece of lemon and rub it in circular motions over the bikini area. Leave the juices on for a couple of minutes to let the citric acid do its work. With repeated use you can eventually notice some changes.

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You can also mix lemons with honey, almond oil or milk powder to create a paste that you can also slather on your bikini line.

Orange Peel

Just like lemons, oranges also contain citric acid which makes them excellent natural skin whiteners. What you need to do is to dry orange peelings and grind them afterwards. To augment its action, mix this with lemon juice in order to create a paste. Apply this daily to lighten the bikini area.

Lime Juice

Another bikini line whitening solution that you can get from the citrus group is lime juice. You can mix this with flour and milk to create a paste that you can spread over the dark areas either on your armpit or bikini line.

Aloe Vera Gel

A fresh Aloe Vera gel can also be great for skin whitening for the pubic area. Apply this liberally and leave it on for 15-20 minutes.

Tomato Juice

Who would have known that tomato juice is not only good for the heart but also aids in whitening the bikini area. You can actually mix this with oatmeal to serve as an exfoliating mixture which you also leave on to whiten the skin. Grated tomatoes with lime juice can also help do the trick. Make sure to leave it on for the juices to take effect.

Mint leaves

Get an unscented skin cream and mash mint leaves into it. Mint leaves have skin whitening properties and mixing it with creams can create a moisturizing and gentler mixture. You can also soak mint leaves in warm water and use it as a wash for the bikini area.

If these measures are not giving the results that you are looking for, you can visit your trusted salon for a bikini line bleaching treatment. These are fast and easy which would only require you a few sessions.

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Final bidder submits SGD5.5 billion plan for Singapore casino

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

The third and last bidder for Singapore’s Sentosa Integrated Resort (IR) project, Eighth Wonder, submitted its development plan yesterday: a SGD 5.5 billion(USD 3.52 billion) eco-friendly casino known as “Harry’s Island”.

Harry’s Island will boast 10 luxury, family-oriented hotels, a tree house with family suites, and a 7,500-seat Caldera theater which will feature nightly spectacular shows.

Eighth Wonder says it wants to make Harry’s Island a world-class, must-see tourist destination and has roped-in several big names in its tender. If selected, the resort will have spas and health centers run by health guru Deepak Chopra, Vera Wang hotels with access to her entire wedding collection, and a soccer academy with Brazilian soccer icon Pele giving his input.

Harry’s Island will create around 15,000 jobs, including 5000 in the food and beverage industry.

The company believes it can recover its investments by 2015 by generating over $5.6 billion in five years; it hopes to bring nearly 15 million visitors annually by 2014.

The Sentosa IR project is the second of two IR tenders offered by the Singapore Government: the first was located in Marina Bay.

The Singapore government is expected to announce the winner in December.

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Canadian media company Bell Globemedia to acquire rival CHUM

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Canadian media company CHUM Limited has announced that it has agreed to be acquired by larger rival Bell Globemedia Inc. for $1.7 billion CAD cash, bringing the CTV and Citytv broadcast-television networks and such specialty channels as MuchMusic, TSN and Bravo! under the same corporate umbrella.

Shareholders will receive $52.50 per common share of CHUM and $47.25 per Class B (non-voting) share. The estate of the late Allan Waters, who died late last year, has agreed to tender all its shares to the bid, netting the Waters family nearly $450 million.

In a joint statement, CHUM’s chairman, Jim Waters, said, “In Bell Globemedia’s offer, we not only found value for shareholders, but confidence that we would be placing CHUM in the hands of an owner with the financial resources and track record to continue to grow and build on our collective legacy.”

Globemedia CEO Ivan Fecan added, “We are able to make this premium offer because Bell Globemedia is clearly the most logical buyer of CHUM. There is a unique strategic fit to our operations that can make the united company a stronger national champion in broadcasting. We intend to maintain and build the valuable CHUM brands and develop more opportunities for Canadian programming.” He added that CTV and Citytv will remain separate networks and “will maintain separate and independent news divisions in order to ensure a continued diversity and competition in news coverage.”

In a separate release, CHUM announced it would be cutting 281 jobs at its stations across the country, particularly at its Citytv stations in western Canada. Effectively immediately, evening newscasts at CKVU-TV Vancouver, CKEM-TV Edmonton, CKAL-TV Calgary and CHMI-TV in the Winnipeg market are being eliminated, with plans for a new newsmagazine tentatively titled In Your City at the three Prairie stations, and more resources being put into each station’s local version of Breakfast Television. Less drastic changes are planned for its A-Channel stations in smaller markets. The company said these changes will result “in a significant reduction in staffing and operating costs.”

The companies said that they expect to sell CHUM’s A-Channel stations, as well as Alberta educational broadcaster Access, to third parties, despite CTV’s historical ties to several of them. Many of the A-Channel stations were originally acquired by CHUM from Baton Broadcasting, the predecessor of Bell Globemedia, in 1997, as part of a trade that sent CHUM’s ATV and ASN assets in Atlantic Canada to Baton and allowed Baton to acquire the CTV network itself.

Despite CHUM’s ownership of MuchMusic and CTV’s recent launch of MTV Canada, the companies claim their specialty channels are “complementary” and did not indicate any sale plans.

Bell Globemedia is currently majority-owned by BCE Inc. but is awaiting regulatory approval for a restructuring involving the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan, Torstar Corp., and the Thomson family. In the interim, the takeover offer will be made by a new company owned by the proposed new shareholder structure.