Bowhead whales using the Northwest Passage

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Bowhead whales using the Northwest Passage (2011, September 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-09-bowhead-whales-northwest-passage.html (PhysOrg.com) — According to a new study published in Biology Letters, the climate changes and melting of ice in the Northwest Passage are leading to the mingling of two bowhead whale populations that have been separated by ice for close to 10,000 years. More information: The Northwest Passage opens for bowhead whales, Biology Letters, Published online before print September 21, 2011, doi:10.1098/rsbl.2011.0731AbstractThe loss of Arctic sea ice is predicted to open up the Northwest Passage, shortening shipping routes and facilitating the exchange of marine organisms between the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans. Here, we present the first observations of distribution overlap of bowhead whales (Balaena mysticetus) from the two oceans in the Northwest Passage, demonstrating this route is already connecting whales from two populations that have been assumed to be separated by sea ice. Previous satellite tracking has demonstrated that bowhead whales from West Greenland and Alaska enter the ice-infested channels of the Canadian High Arctic during summer. In August 2010, two bowhead whales from West Greenland and Alaska entered the Northwest Passage from opposite directions and spent approximately 10 days in the same area, documenting overlap between the two populations. Scientists stunned as grey whale sighted off Israel Bowhead Whales (Balaena mysticetus). Image: Wikpedia. The researchers, led by Mads Peter Heide-Jorgensen from the Greenland Institute of Natural Resources, have tagged more than 100 bowheads with satellite tracking systems over the last 10 years. Recent travels into the Northwest Passage confirm previous DNA samples that showed that these two different populations have mingled before.Previously discovered bones found in Nunavut’s High Artic islands show that between 8,500 and 11,000 year ago there was open water in the Passage for the whales to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific, but until recently, this had been restricted by frozen waters.The first evidence of bowhead whales moving into the Northwest Passage occurred in 2002. A 40 foot male bowhead whale from West Greenland traveled 93 degrees W. in the Northwest Passage in the fall months before turning around and heading to the Hudson Straight.The fall of 2006 found another male whale from Alaska traveling east to Banks Island. However, both this whale and the whale from 2002 were unable to travel any farther because of dense ice blocking the passage.In 2010, the passage was nearly ice free by August 10 and the researchers tracked two male whales, one coming from each direction in September. Both of the whales arrived in the Viscount Melville Sound and spent two weeks in the area before crossing paths in the Parry Channel and returning home.The researchers are unclear as to what attracted the whales to this area as it is not known for producing high feeding opportunities. They do note that all the whales they have tracked into the area are males and may indicate that the males are more exploratory than female whales.The declining amount of ice in the Northwest Passage may open up areas that the bowhead whales have not inhabited for many years. The presence of bowhead whales are not the only whales that have been seen in the Northwest Passage in recent years. Belugas and narwhals have also been spotted. Explore further © 2011 PhysOrg.comlast_img read more

Willow Garage spinoff debuts robot ripe for picking

first_imgUBR-1 Citation: Willow Garage spinoff debuts robot ripe for picking (2013, October 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-10-willow-garage-spinoff-debuts-robot.html © 2013 Phys.org Robots learn how to arrange objects by ‘hallucinating’ humans into their environment (w/ video) Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img More information: spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/ro … ll-change-everythingspectrum.ieee.org/automaton/ro … nipulation-with-ubr1unboundedrobotics.com/blog/ UBR-1 will be demonstrated at RoboBusiness 2013 in Santa Clara, California, later this week. As the title suggests, RoboBusiness is a business development event for the global robotics industry, and it runs from October 23 to 25. Oh yes, and the price. The UBR-1 will cost $35,000, which is a “selling” point that is not minimized by its creators. The newcomer, priced at a tenth of the cost of some other expensive robots, could possibly motivate businesses and labs that did not consider the use of robotics as helpers to take interest. “You’re now transforming a community that so far has had a hard time growing due to the sheer cost of the platform,” said company CEO Melonee Wise in an interview with the IEEE Spectrum.UBR-1 is three feet, two inches tall, has a seven degrees of freedom arm and pincer grip. The robot navigates with a laser scanner in its base. Its eyes are 3D sensors, developed by PrimeSense, for perception. The UBR-1 has a continuous run time of three to five hours and an idle run time of over 10 hours. Charge time is posted on the company site as 3.5 hours to 90 percent charge.The robot comes pre-installed with Ubuntu Linux LTS and ROS, and with applications such as MoveIt!, navigation, calibration, and joystick teleoperation. Wise, in the interview, also called attention to the benefit of the robot with MoveIt! in place, for realtime pick-and-place. For those doing vision research, for example, “they don’t want to know about robot arms; once they tell the robot where the object is, they just want the robot to pick it up.” Another core feature is that the robot can move around on a circular base with hidden wheels, anywhere in the building where wheelchairs can go. UBR-1 also has a smaller footprint, suitable for factory or store environments with limited space.Unbounded Robotics, formed in January this year, is a Willow Garage spinoff. Above all, the company engineers emphasize that the robot is not so much a product but a platform. The designers including Wise wanted this robot to be customizable. The gripper, for example, was created to be as modular as possible so that any customer wanting more fingers or suction cups or other features could fashion the gripper to their own requirements. Also, the customer can attach new sensors. Unbounded Robotics plans to start shipping the robots in summer 2014. (Phys.org) —A mobile robot a little over three feet with one arm that can move around the building and watch where it’s going made its debut on Sunday with capabilities and a pricetag that could eventually earn the robot a place alongside humans in the workplace. The robot is called the UBR-1, suitable for manual labor tasks such as picking and stocking shelves. Created by a young startup called Unbounded Robotics, the robot carries a formal description as a “state of the art ROS based mobile manipulation platform designed for robotics researchers and business.” The ROS refers to the open source Robot Operating System that is the robot’s framework. The big deal about the debut is that this is a robot small enough, with a small enough footprint, to take its place more easily than big robots on factory floors, in service environments and in research labs.last_img read more

Researchers successfully clone adult human stem cells

first_img The achievement by the team is actually a replication of work done by another team just last year—in that effort the team did the same thing but used donor cells from infants. In this new experiment, two men aged 35 and 75 donated skin cells. Technically called somatic-cell nuclear transfer aka “therapeutic cloning” the process is similar to that used to clone Dolly the sheep back in 1997. Since that time, researchers have run into a myriad of obstacles in achieving the same results in humans, though it should be noted that there is a major difference in objective—with humans, the aim is to clone stem cells so that they can be used to treat diseases, not reproduce whole human beings.To clone the stem cells, the researchers used unfertilized eggs donated by several unidentified women. After removing the DNA material inside the egg, new DNA material extracted from the skin cells of the male donors was injected inside and the resulting filled egg was exposed to a small dose of electricity to cause fusing—the egg was then allowed to “rest” for two hours. Afterwards each egg reprogrammed itself and grew into a blastocyst which eventually grew into a pluripotent stem cell that genetically matched the skin donor. Theoretically such stem cells could then be engineered to grow into various cells, e.g. heart, lung, liver, for transplant into a patient. Funding for the research was provided by an unnamed foundation and the Korean Government—the experiments were conducted in a lab in California. The researchers point out that the process cannot be used to create a whole human being.The team notes that despite their success, there is still a lot of work to do before cloned stem cells become a viable option for treating medical problems in people. They note that out of 77 eggs donated and used in the experiments, only two led to successful cloning—one from each of the male donors. Their experiments do prove however, they add, that successful cloning of human stem cells is possible with donors of any age. © 2014 Phys.org (Phys.org) —An international team of researchers, led by Robert Lanza, of Advanced Cell Technology, has announced that they have performed the first successful cloning of adult human skin cells into stem cells. A paper by the team describing their work has been published in the journal Cell Stem Cell. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Credit: Cell Stem Cell, DOI: 10.1016/j.stem.2014.03.015 More information: Human Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer Using Adult Cells, Cell Stem Cell, dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.stem.2014.03.015SummaryDerivation of patient-specific human pluripotent stem cells via somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) has the potential for applications in a range of therapeutic contexts. However, successful SCNT with human cells has proved challenging to achieve, and thus far has only been reported with fetal or infant somatic cells. In this study, we describe the application of a recently developed methodology for the generation of human ESCs via SCNT using dermal fibroblasts from 35- and 75-year-old males. Our study therefore demonstrates the applicability of SCNT for adult human cells and supports further investigation of SCNT as a strategy for regenerative medicine.center_img Explore further Researchers discover ancient virus DNA remnants necessary for pluripotency in humans Citation: Researchers successfully clone adult human stem cells (2014, April 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-04-successfully-clone-adult-human-stem.html Journal information: Cell Stem Celllast_img read more

Geoscientists insist weather forecasting is more accurate than ever and could get

first_img © 2019 Science X Network A trio of geoscientists with Pennsylvania State University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has published an an update in the journal Science on the state of weather forecasting. In their paper, Richard Alley, Kerry Emanuel and Fuqing Zhang report statistics demonstrating the increased accuracy of weather forecasting, and their views on where the field is headed. Journal information: Science More information: Richard B. Alley et al. Advances in weather prediction, Science (2019). DOI: 10.1126/science.aav7274 Credit: George Hodan/public domain Citation: Geoscientists insist weather forecasting is more accurate than ever and could get even better (2019, January 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-geoscientists-insist-weather-accurate.htmlcenter_img Explore further Why the weather forecast will always be a bit wrong This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Most people have a love-hate relationship with their local weather forecaster—when they are right, we carry on as best we can given conditions outside. But when they are wrong, we cast aspirations on their character and wonder why we listen to them at all. But weather forecasters have become more accurate, the authors claim, noting that today, a five-day forecast is as accurate as a one-day forecast was as recently as 1980. And a 72-hour hurricane warning today is more accurate than a 24-hour warning was 40 years ago. It is also far more accessible. Not very long ago, we had to wait for the morning paper or the evening news to get our report, but now we can fire up a phone app and get not just a forecast, but up-to-the-minute radar images of moving storms.The researchers point out the improvements are mostly due to technology. They note that the same basic tools are used for forecasting, but improvements to those tools have made results far more impressive. Foremost among them are improvements in computer hardware and software. They also point out that forecasting is more than just predicting rain or snow, it also includes things like hints on which way forest fires will move, how much ice will melt in the Arctic, or how much the sea will rise, leading to flooding in the future. It is also playing an increasingly larger role in helping people plan renewable energy projects.Looking to the future, the authors offer a generally sunny forecast. As computers and weather models improve, so will the forecasts they offer. But they also note there is a catch—weather forecasting costs more than it used to, so it is important that investments by both government and private entities continue or even increase. Also, important is data sharing between entities, particularly between different countries. Accurate data, they note, will only benefit everyone.last_img read more

NDLI now available with around 2 crore ebooks

first_imgKolkata: The Union Human Resource Development Minister, Prakash Javadekar on Tuesday inaugurated National Digital Library of India (NDLI) with 2 crore e-books, available online at the click of a mouse, in New Delhi. The project is spearheaded by IIT Kharagpur.NDLI is a project of the Ministry of Human Resource Development under the aegis of National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technology (NMEICT).The objective of NDLI is to make digital educational resources available to the citizens of the country to empower, inspire and encourage learning. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flights”NDLI has been dedicated to the Nation by Government of India. It is a proud moment for IITKGP and MHRD teams,” IIT KGP director Partha Pratim Chakrabarti wrote on his Facebook page.NDLI is the single window platform that collects and collates metadata from premier learning institutions in India and abroad, as well as other relevant sources.It is a digital repository containing textbooks, articles, videos, audio books, lectures, simulations, fiction and all other kinds of Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedlearning media.According to sources, NDLI makes quality learning resources available to all learners and has 1.7 crore content from more than 160 sources, in over 200 languages, 30 lakh users are registered on NDLI as on date and the target is to increase the users 10 times in a year.NDLI is also available on the Mobile app. The mobile app is enabling access to rich digital content of libraries across the country and even foreign repositories to users even in theremotest of areas.The App, which has been downloaded over 6.70 lakh times, is currently available for both iPhone and Android users. Users can search for content using various parameters like subject matter, source, content type and more. The App is available in three languages – English, Hindi and Bengali.last_img read more

Childrens Play

first_imgTo showcase the work of different theatre groups working with and for children.The festival will be organised in the national Capital from November 14 to 25, and for the first time will see international participation. The festival is a reputed theatre experience focusing on the children, representing various regions and languages from across the country and beyond. The National School of Drama campus will be turned into an exciting kid’s mela for this 12-day theatre carnival, as thousands of kids are expected to be a part of the festival.  Also Read – Add new books to your shelfTwenty productions from India and seven productions for abroad, like Sri Lanka (English and Sinhala), Pakistan (Urdu), Turkey (Gibberish), Israel (Non Verbal), France (Non Verbal) and Switzerland (English) will feature with around 500 artistes participating in the festival. The 20 productions selected out of 149 entries comprise of plays from Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Delhi, West Bengal, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Manipur and Tripura. The language of the plays will be Hindi, Bengali, Marathi, English, Assamese, Malayalam and Non-verbal.  Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe inaugural ceremony for the festival will be held on November 14 at the NSD campus at 5:30PM. Five professional groups from Rajasthan, Punjab, Gujarat and Delhi and schools based in Delhi-NCR, under the direction of Dr Laique Hussain will perform Bal Vrind- a musical dance to kickstart the gala event. In the inaugural ceremony NK Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Govt of India will be the Chief Guest, Manoj Joshi, eminent film and theatre personality will be the special guest while Mukesh Tiwary, eminent film and theatre personality will be the guest of honour. Irrfan Khan, alumnus of NSD, eminent film and theatre personality will be present at the culmination ceremony.   Waman Kendre, Director, National School of Drama said, “Children’s theatre is the most important aspect of theatre expression. Through ‘Jashne Bachpan’ we are trying to build the foundation of theatre from the grassroots and inculcate interest about theatre amongst the children from their childhood.  Children from various cultural and demographic backgrounds will get a chance to interact and exchange their ideas. In the process, they will make friends from across the world.This is a testing ground for world children theatre because if we succeed in generating interest towards theatre among the kids, this will be an opening door for them for future theatre expression.”The festival comprises of three distinct categories – performance by children, performance by children and adults and performance by adults. Underprivileged children from various NGOs will be invited to come and enjoy the theatre festival. The idea is to bring those children to the mainstream and inculcate enthusiasm for art and culture along with entertainment at a global platform like ‘Jashne Bachpan’.last_img read more

AAI celebrates 23rd Annual Day with a cultural extravaganza

first_imgAirports Authority of India (AAI), the mainstay of Civil Aviation in the country, celebrated its 23rd Annual Day on April 1, at Siri Fort Auditorium, New Delhi with a cultural extravaganza – ‘Horizon.’ Jayant Sinha, Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation was the Chief Guest of the event.The colourful evening of music and celebration started with the felicitation of AAI airports that made a mark in ACI-ASQ and CSI awards respectively. While the Airport Directors of Chennai, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Indore, and Pune were felicitated for their respective airports making it under various categories of the coveted list of ACI-ASQ Awards 2017, APDs of AAI’s Raipur, Udaipur and Dehradun were felicitated for their respective airports achieving first, second and third ranks in the Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) Survey. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfApart from various airports, Subhash Kumar, General Manager (Fire), the recipient of President’s Medal for Fire Safety was also felicitated. While addressing the audience, Jayant Sinha congratulated AAI family and acknowledged the significant role it plays in the growth of the civil aviation sector in India. He applauded significant strides that AAI made in the last year in terms of financial performance and also commended its CSR initiatives in serving the society. This was followed by an exciting cultural evening.last_img read more

EC set to introduce health kits in polling booths

first_imgKolkata: In a unique move, the Election Commission is all set to introduce health kits at the polling booths in the state on election days.The health kits will contain all the essential medicines and other medical items. The office of the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) had urged the Election Commission of India (ECI) in Delhi, seeking permission for the same. The ECI has given an approval in this regard and hence all the polling booths will have health kits. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataA senior official of the CEO’s office has officially unveiled the health kit, which will eventually be delivered to all the polling booths across the state. If the voters or any polling personnel need any medical intervention, the kits would come handy. Meanwhile, it may be mentioned that the Income Tax department has confiscated a huge amount of money from the state. The matter was reported to the Election Commission. The I-T department is now conducting a probe to ascertain if the money was supposed to be used in the election process. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateThe commission has taken a stand on fair and clean polling in view of the Lok Sabha elections. A couple of days ago, the EC had confiscated more than Rs 54 lakh from four people in Alipurduar. Apart from I-T, various other election machineries like state police and flying squads are constantly on the lookout and also conducting raids at various places across the state. The commission has also recently recovered more than 59 weapons, ammunition and 6,757 kg of ammonium nitrate and 2,676 kilogram of gelatine stick powder from different districts of the state. Around 3,782 litres of liquor was also recovered.last_img read more

Petfree upbringing raises mental illness risk

first_imgChildren raised without pets in an urban setting are more vulnerable to mental illness than those raised in a rural environment, surrounded by animals and bacteria-laden dust, says a new study. Kids raised in rural settings may grow up to have more stress-resilient immune systems and might be at lower risk of mental illness, according to the study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).The study adds to mounting evidence supporting the “hygiene hypothesis,” which posits that overly sterile environments can lead to health problems. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe research also suggests that raising kids around pets might be good for mental health.”It has already been very well documented that exposure to pets and rural environments during development is beneficial in terms of reducing risk of asthma and allergies later in life,” said study co-author, Christopher Lowry, Professor at the University of Colorado Boulder in the US. “This study moves the conversation forward by showing for the first time in humans that these same exposures are likely to be important for mental health,” Lowry added. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveFor the study, led by Professor Stefan Reber of the University of Ulm in Germany, the scientists recruited a small group of healthy German men between ages 20 and 40. Half had grown up on a farm with farm animals. Half had grown up in a large city without pets.On test day, all were asked to give a speech in front of a group of stone-faced observers and then asked to solve a difficult math problem while being timed.Blood and saliva were taken five minutes before and five, 15, 60, 90 and 120 minutes after the test. “People who grew up in an urban environment had a much-exaggerated induction of the inflammatory immune response to the stressor, and it persisted throughout the two-hour period,” Lowry said.Previous studies have shown that those with an exaggerated inflammatory response are more likely to develop depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) later in life.Research has also shown that our immunoregulatory response to stress develops in early life and is shaped largely by our microbial environment.More than 50 per cent of the world’s population now lives in urban areas, meaning humans are exposed to far fewer micro-organisms than they evolved with, the authors noted.”If you are not exposed to these types of organisms, then your immune system doesn’t develop a balance between inflammatory and anti-inflammatory forces, and you can develop a chronic, low-grade inflammation and exaggerated immune reactivity that makes you vulnerable to allergy, autoimmune disease and, we propose, psychiatric disorders,” Lowry said.last_img read more

Bengal Chamber collaborates with IAICC to promote SMEs

first_imgKolkata: A MoU was signed between the Bengal Chamber and the Indian American International Chamber of Commerce (IAICC) to provide business advisory services to small and medium enterprises of India and USA.The collaboration aims to facilitate B2B links between American businesses and their Indian counterparts of East and north-east. Subhodip Ghosh, director general, the Bengal Chamber, Ambarish Dasgupta, founder and senior partner, Intueri Consulting LLP, A Mukherjee, senior vice-president, The Bengal Chamber, Patricia Hoffman, Consul General of The United States of America in Kolkata, K V Kumar, chairman and CEO of IAICC and other delegates were present during the MoU signing. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata”The Bengal Chamber has always been at the forefront to provide platforms for business links irrespective of geographical boundaries and Kumar has served in Trump campaign’s Asian American and Pacific Islander Advisory Council. Being an authority on government relations, alliance building, crisis management and his long association with the World Bank, his visit would be integral for forging business developments between America and India. We have signed an MoU with IAICC to create a joint council to offer services to stake holders in form of B2B links and advisory services for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Whenever, a delegation would come from the US, Kolkata would be a stopover,” said Subhodip Ghosh, director general, The Bengal Chamber. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateKV Kumar said: “The IAICC is seeking to open offices in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Dubai, Hong Kong and 30 chapters in the US itself. We are looking forward to creative and innovative ways of doing business. There are about 600,000 Indian-American businesses in the US. West Bengal being strategically placed is ideal to act as a gateway to accessing markets in the ASEAN countries. At present, we are working in four states in India where each state has made a Chamber of Commerce a platform to create business links. We are putting up an innovative challenge — a new platform for doing business, which is part virtual and part real, where businesses are initiated through virtual media between traders, buyers, sellers establishing B2B links that later involves personal meet ups and visits to check products or services. We are going to invite Amit Mitra, West Bengal state minister of Finance and IT, and Electronics, Industry, Commerce, Enterprise and E-governance and MSME to USA on August 30 to attend a business forum where the innovative ideas would be introduced.” The IAICC works with entrepreneurs, professionals, businesses and governments to develop entrepreneurship and commerce through mentor-protégé programmes, training, seminars and networking opportunities.last_img read more

5 ways to care for jewellery this monsoon

first_imgThe pitter-patter of rain may bring immense joy, but it certainly is not a good sign for jewellery, say experts. Experts have suggested some self-care tips to help protect your ornaments in this damp weather: Gold jewellery is prone to catching dust and dirt quickly when kept in a humid environment. Hence, during monsoon one must use warm soapy water to clean gold ornaments. When it comes to jewellery such as pearls, coral or amber, it would be advisable to keep them in separate boxes. Do not mix them with other gemstones as scratches are inevitable. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfFurthermore, gemstones need to be given proper care and attention. Pearls are delicate and direct contact with perfumes and sprays might damage them. If adequate precautions are not taken while storing them, it is likely to develop scratches. Moisture can affect metal alloy used to make ornaments and cause it to lose its original lustre. To prevent this from happening, store your jewellery in a box with a sturdy exterior and a soft interior, which would do half the job for you by keeping the humidity and moisture out. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveMeanwhile, the soft interior would save the articles from probable friction and help retain their natural sheen. Over-exposure to air and humidity can damage your delicate silver. It’s advisable to store silver jewellery in individual, air-tight bags with an anti-tarnish properties paper. These types of bags minimise air exposure and keep the jewellery new for a longer period of time. Keep the jewellery away from water as much as possible, since the contaminants in water can result in tarnished and dull looking silver. If your jewellery gets wet, take a soft cloth, dab the water out and blow dry the jewellery before storing it.last_img read more

With over 250 felonies in a week NYC subway in the 1970s

first_imgNew York City’s subway in the late 1970s and 1980s looked like it came straight out of the Walter Hill cult classic, Warriors. Graffiti-laced train carts, poverty-stricken beggars and drug addicts, side by side with colorfully dressed gang members harassing the passengers who gladly give up valuable possessions in exchange for their lives were a normal sight back then. Crime rates skyrocketed during the 1970s as the NYC subway proved to be the most dangerous transit system in the world. In September 1979, there were 250 felonies reported per week – all going down in the dark hallways of the subway system.Together with the drug epidemic which forced its users into the underground, it was truly a sad sight to look upon. Gangs such as Black Spades, The Satan Souls, The Devil Rebels, Imperial Survivors to name a few, kept their turf strict, partitioning the underground sections as well.Graffiti became a notable symbol of declining service during the 1970s.Due to the high mortality rates among gang members of the time, Luis Garden Acosta, a community leader and the founder of a grassroots environmental justice coalition El Puento, called the streets of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, “killing fields.” Rightfully so, for many teenagers were injured or killed due to violent turf wars which raged all over New York’s poorest neighborhoods.An officer checks a suspect at Liberty Avenue Station; subway crime was high in the area. July 30, 1974. (Photo by Vernon Shibla/New York Post Archives /(c) NYP Holdings, Inc. via Getty Images)As a response to such violence, the police had to develop new tactics, strung between the necessity to control the rampant crime rates and the forever-shrinking budget.Even though their presence was on a high level since the 1960s, when around 3,100 officers patrolled the subway as part of the Transit Police force, various reports from the late 1970s challenged their effectiveness.NYC Subway, 1970s.For one, the MTA (Metropolitan Transportation Authority) used different radio frequencies, causing unnecessary confusion. Secondly, the Transport Police patrol patterns quickly became predictable, enabling the felons to effectively avoid them and thus be one step ahead.New York Subway, c. 1970.In July 1974, another surge of violence in the subway led the MTA to shut down the rearmost cars of trains at night. Over the course of a decade, the MTA would lose an estimated 300 million subway riders because of its bad reputation for being a hotbed of criminal activity.Subway passengers aboard NYC subway, 1970s.54 Seconds from Studio 54Lexitington Avenue line.Two hundred potential felons were arrested in December 1977 during a police operation titled Subway Sweep. However, the arrests failed to show positive results, for in 1979, in the first two months alone, six murders were reported on the subway. Compared to nine murders committed in the whole of the previous year, this was a significant increase.New York City Subway car. Photo by Sweet Child of mine FLickr CC By Sa 2.0Around the same time, a vigilante group called Guardian Angels rose up in order to tackle crime in the subway system and protect its passengers. The organization specialized in unarmed combat and committing citizen arrests against muggers riding the subway.Passengers boarding a subway car on Lexington Avenue line. New York 1973.Quickly gaining popular support, their numbers swelled. By February 1980, around 220 members wore the colors of Guardian Angels, cooperating tightly with the police in an attempt to suppress crime within the NYC subway.Graffiti on subway train, 1973.However, it was the system itself that needed fixing – malfunctions were common and many of the cars were poorly lit. Due to budget cutbacks, the trains were shortened, causing outrage among passengers. On top of that, windows were frequently smashed by hooligans.In 1980 there was $2 million dollars worth of damage from broken windows alone, not counting the repairs concerning infrastructure.Subway train, 1973.In a desperate attempt to regain popularity, the MTA launched a new transit line in 1978, called Train to the Plane, which provided benefits such as a 24/7 police escort. The line was intended to transfer passengers along Sixth Avenue in Manhattan, leading them to a shuttle bus on Howard Beach that linked directly to JFK Airport.Despite its best efforts, the MTA failed to attract enough passengers and was shut down in the 1990s, as rider rates continued to drop.Taken near Castle Hill Avenue Bronx, NY, on the 6 Line. Photo by Alfred Gonzalez CC BY 2.5Parallel to this, a growing graffiti subculture was on the rise in the 1970s. This would lead to the city’s Mayor John Lindsay to declare the first war on graffiti in 1972. Due to lack of funding, no significant activity was taken to tackle the numerous graffiti artists in their mission to cover every inch of the subway cars with various stencils, tags or turf markings.Taken on 6 Line train near 86th Street, NYC.The authorities seemed to be losing control over the subway, with murders and robberies becoming a common sight. That was until they decided to use a different approach. In the early 1980s, a new doctrine was instigated.Broadway Local subway car, 1973.Dubbed as the “Broken Window” theory, the policy’s aim was to focus more on the environment in which crime flourished than on the felons. It was the brainchild of two social scientists − James Q. Wilson and George L. Kelling – who first published their theory in March 1982 in an article for The Atlantic Monthly magazine.Subway Station, New York, 1973.The duo suggested that if a broken window isn’t fixed immediately, it encourages vandals to take further action, breaking more windows and eventually occupying the whole building. What this parable proposed was that in order to reduce serious crime within the subway system, the authorities had to battle the minor offenses, such as petty theft, graffiti, fare evasion, or in this case, an act of breaking a window.A man sits on a seat on a subway car which has been extensively marked with graffiti, 1973.Wilson and Kelling believed that in order to eradicate crime, one must first create an environment that discourages it. This meant that the broken window was to be repaired immediately, graffiti was to be covered with paint as soon as possible, and minor offenders should be apprehended. It also meant the introduction of strict measures, together with the use of “stop, question, and frisk” by the NYC Police Department, who were given higher authority.The theory proved to be highly controversial, and the scientists behind it were accused of being advocates of a zero-tolerance approach.Woman in a subway, New York, 1973.Even though it took more than a decade for their theory to be effectively put to practice, in the 1990s police commissioner William Bratton and Mayor Rudy Giuliani began introducing measures suggested by Wilson and Kelling.New York City Subway car. Photo by Sweet Child of mine FLickr CC By Sa 2.0Accusations of zealotry conducted by the Police Department once again surged, causing the authors of the theory to make an official statement in 2014, insisting on the difference between the broken window effect and zero tolerance:“Critics use the term “zero tolerance” in a pejorative sense to suggest that Broken Windows policing is a form of zealotry—the imposition of rigid, moralistic standards of behavior on diverse populations. It is not. Broken Windows is a highly discretionary police activity that requires careful training, guidelines, and supervision, as well as an ongoing dialogue with neighborhoods and communities to ensure that it is properly conducted.”Read another story from us: A radical feminist shot Andy Warhol claiming that “he controlled her life”Whether the theory is justified or not remains a subject of heated debate among social scientists. However, from the mid-1990s to this day, crime rates in the New York City subway system are at a record low. While the deteriorating trend continues, more and more subway users are reported every year, breathing new life into the old underground transport system.Nikola Budanovic is a freelance journalist who has worked for various media outlets such as Vice, War History Online, The Vintage News, and Taste of Cinema. His main areas of interest are history, particularly military history, literature and film.last_img read more

Major Movies which Caused Major RealLife Headaches

first_imgWhile the movie world can create precious memories for millions of viewers, it isn’t always a great experience for those taking part in the making of them. Films which are inspired by true stories, use someone’s beloved home as a location, or in some cases both, have unwittingly caused strife for mere mortals left behind when the crew goes back to Hollywood. Here after four cases where the silver screen hasn’t proved so shiny for certain people caught up in the production… The GooniesOregon Film Museum. Photo by Constablequackers CC BY-SA 4.0Even over 30 years on from their first and only adventure, the Goonies crew still inspire devotion from an army of fans. Unfortunately for an Oregon houseowner this has translated into major disruption to their daily lives. Because way back when, the infamous “Truffle Shuffle” was performed outside her gate.If shuffling character Chunk (played by Jeff Cohen) thought he had it bad, he should spare a thought for this individual. “The owner had no problem with people taking a nostalgic look at her home,” an article for The Independent wrote in 2015, “but drew the line at beer bottles and cigarette butts being left outside and dogs urinating on her lawn.”The old Clatsop County Jail, scene of the Fratelli jail break. The site is now home to the Oregon Film Museum. Photo by Ian Poellet CC BY-SA 3.0Eventually a sign was erected denying access to the “Goonies House” and a tarpaulin draped across the windows to put off literally thousands of prying eyes. Presumably if the long-mooted sequel is made, producers will select a different location!A similar, if somewhat more poignant, case was reported over family favorite Mrs Doubtfire (1993). When star Robin Williams tragically passed away in 2014, the San Francisco property used in the film was festooned with floral tributes. According to Digital Spy, even as late this this year it “receives so many pictures, flowers and other tributes that it’s impossible for the elderly home owner to leave via the front door.” Napoleon DynamiteThe cast of Napoleon Dynamite. Photo by Gage Skidmore CC BY-SA 3.0Cult favorite Napoleon Dynamite (2004) brought the world many memorable characters. But in one example it unleashed a surprising case of double trouble. Efren Ramirez played the role of Pedro Sánchez, yet in a development worthy of a Jared Hess movie he had a real life twin brother, Carlos.Tensions flared when Carlos impersonated Efren as Pedro. He said he’d been asked to do this to help his brother keep up with professional engagements. However, speaking to TMZ in 2013 he said, “I did attend an event without his knowledge as I was being immature and wanted to get back at him for a personal matter which involved the girl I was dating at the time.”Related Video: The Incredible True Story Behind ‘The Revenant’Efren made the beef official by approaching Carlos with a $10 million lawsuit. The unauthorized appearances stopped after that. “I think it’s safe to say the magnitude of ‘Napoleon Dynamite’ and everything that has come along with it, has ruined my relationship with my twin,” he added.SidewaysQuirky comedy drama Sideways (2004) was a road trip romp blended with the intriguing pursuit of wine tasting. Yet just as drink and driving make bad bedfellows, so Paul Giamatti’s memorable character Miles Raymond proved a liability for the real life vineyards.The Hitching Post II Restaurant in Buellton where Miles and Jack first encounter MayaAfter delivering the immortal line “If anyone orders merlot I’m leaving. I am not drinking any (expletive) merlot!”, sales of the red stuff actually dropped. Not bad going for a fictional creation! In 2017 The Guardian wrote in the wine’s defence, saying “Giamatti’s character hated merlot precisely because it was so easy to drink. He wasn’t making a comment on the quality of merlot, but his own antagonistic contrarian tendencies.”The piece goes on to say that sales of merlot appear to be on the rise. Still, the decade or so that have passed since Raymond delivered his major blow are testament to the power of movies. A power that sometimes causes grief when it doesn’t intend to.The ConjuringThis franchise and its various spin offs have made a scary amount of money for studio Warner Bros. But aside from cinemagoers and movie execs, there are people unhappy about the paranormal encounters of Ed and Lorraine Warren — namely the residents of a farmhouse featured as a key location in the first film (2013). In fact so disturbed were they, that ominous forces of the legal kind were released.According to a 2015 Entertainment Weekly article, “Since the release of the film in July 2013, the couple (Norma Sutcliffe and Gerald Helfrich, who bought the house in the late ‘80s) have dealt with ‘threats of physical violence and harm, sleepless nights, and worry that one day, one of the many trespassers will commit an act of destruction, violence, or harm,’ the suit alleges.”Read another story from us: How Rasputin Initiated the ‘All Persons Fictitious’ Disclaimer in MoviesIt was based on a true story, though filmmakers wound up dealing with a reality they didn’t expect! The property, with the gruesome addition of a noose dangling from a nearby tree, formed a major part of the movie’s marketing and gave producers a serious financial headache.last_img read more

Chewbacca Actor Passes Away At 74

first_imgThe Star Wars world reacted with sorrow to the death of one of its most beloved original cast members, Peter Mayhew, who played Chewbacca in the original Star Wars trilogy, episode three of the prequels, and the new trilogy up to Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Mayhew passed away at the age of 74 on April 30, 2019, with his family by his side. “He put his heart and soul into the role of Chewbacca,” his family said.Harrison Ford, who portrayed Han Solo, paid tribute to Mayhew, with whom he shared many scenes, saying, “I loved him.” Ford spoke of the “kind and gentle man” possessing “great dignity and noble character,” according to the BBC.Peter Mayhew at the 2015 Florida SuperCon. Photo by Florida Supercon CC BY 2.0Mark Hamill said on twitter, “He was the gentlest of giants — A big man with an even bigger heart who never failed to make me smile & a loyal friend who I loved dearly — I’m grateful for the memories we shared & I’m a better man for just having known him. Thanks Pete.”“Peter was a wonderful man,” producer and director George Lucas said in a statement. “He was the closest any human being could be to a Wookiee: big heart, gentle nature — and I learned to always let him win. He was a good friend, and I’m saddened by his passing.”George Lucas with Chewbacca. Photo by Getty ImagesMayhew, who was seven feet three inches tall, was working as a hospital orderly when Lucas cast him as the Wookiee named Chewbacca in 1977’s first film.As Variety wrote: “Though he spoke entirely in growls, snarls, and the occasional roar, Chewbacca’s unwavering loyalty to Han Solo made him one of the most beloved characters in the franchise. Much more than just the hairy co-pilot of the Millennium Falcon, Chewie’s dependability and trustworthiness helped the iconic Wookiee function as the series’ ultimate ‘wing man.’ ”Chewbacca at the Star Wars Identities Exhibition at the O2 in London. Photo by William Warby CC BY 2.0“We were partners in film and friends in life for over 30 years,” said Ford in an interview. “He invested his soul in the character and brought great pleasure to the Star Wars audience.”Mayhew consulted on The Last Jedi in order to help his successor. As his family wrote in the announcement of his passing, his commitment to Chewbacca “showed in every frame of the films from his knock-kneed running, firing his bowcaster from the hip, his bright blue eyes, down to each subtle movement of his head and mouth.”Mayhew was born in London and did a little acting before signing on with George Lucas.“After wrapping the first Star Wars, he went back to work as an orderly and did not leave the job for good until the release of Return of the Jedi, after which he made a living off of Chewbacca, becoming a favorite on the fan convention circuit,” reported the Hollywood Reporter.Characters from the Star Wars movie franchise welcoming cosplayers to the first Monster Comic Con event at Doncaster Racecourse in South Yorkshire, UK, October 7, 2017“While Mayhew did not provide the voice of the 200-year-old Wookiee (that was created by sound designer Ben Burtt), many credit the body language and expressiveness of the eyes the actor brought to the role in making Chewbacca a beloved character.It was a part that Mayhew would take on his whole life and well beyond the movies, reprising the role for appearances on Donny & Marie and The Muppet Show and, more recently, Glee.”Peter Mayhew sitting in front of an image of his famous role as Chewbacca. Photo by Luigi Novi CC BY 3.0Although his height was not due to gigantism, Mayhew wrote two books for children, Growing Up Giant, and the anti-bullying book My Favorite Giant. He set up various charities, primarily the Peter Mayhew Foundation, and devoted time to those efforts for decades.Read another story from us: Star Wars, James Bond and Thunderbirds Star Shane Rimmer Passes Away at 89Mayhew was asked by Australia’s BMag why Chewbacca didn’t get a medal at the end of the first Star Wars film, along with Han Solo and Luke Skywalker. “I think it was one of two reasons,” he said. “One, they didn’t have enough money to buy me a medal. Or two, Carrie couldn’t reach my neck, and it was probably too expensive to build a little step so that I could step down or she could step up and give me the medal.”Mayhew, who lived in Texas, is survived by his wife and three children.Nancy Bilyeau, a former staff editor at Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, and InStyle, has written a trilogy of historical thrillers for Touchstone Books. Her new book, The Blue, is a spy story set in the 18th-century porcelain world. For more information, go to www.nancybilyeau.comlast_img read more

Messis hattrick highlights Barcas 7 – 0 destruction of Celtic

first_imgLa Pulga’s hat-trick was impressive, but the goal of the match came off the the foot Andres Iniesta, who put a laser beam volley in the back of the net with a pure strike. The Celtic goalkeeper gets the Crying Jordan Face. Poor guy.You win, @andresiniesta8. What a strike.? @HeinekenSoccer #UCL https://t.co/CaDzIPnpjP— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) September 13, 2016 Celtic fans are crying in their Guinness this morning after Lionel Messi and Barcelona’s 7 – 0 undressing of the stalwart Irish club in yesterday’s UEFA Champions League Group C match.“Blonde Ambition” Messi didn’t waste any time, scoring his first goal in the 3rd minute. He added two more for the hat-trick against an overmatched Celtic side that was simply outclassed on the day.Check out all three Messi goals from the steamrolling. Messi seems to have fully recovered from his soul crushing missed penalty kick in the Copa America Final against Chile. Barcelona is scary when they’re on. They were on against Celtic.last_img read more

VIDEO Klay Thomspon completely blanking while giving cliche answer to boring question

first_imgThe NBA season is a grind. By the playoffs, NBA players have been asked every cliched question, and given equally as many cliched answers to those questions.Before Game 2 of the Warriors second round series against the Jazz, Thompson was in the middle of giving an innocuous response to some boring question that he’s answered probably 1,000 times this year. Then Thompson’s hard drive crashed and he completely forgot whatever he was talking about. The best part is that Thompson doesn’t try to disguise it, and cops to tuning out.Watch the Klay2000 meltdown. Hey, it’s a long season:last_img

Seven MustHave Tools for Your Home Office

first_imgThe AT&T 3G MicroCell2. AT&T 3G MicroCellA reliable cellular signal can be just as important as always-on Internet. The AT&T 3G MicroCell, which costs about $200, can boost local cellular reception, promising up to five bars of coverage throughout your home.The miniature cell tower connects to your broadband Internet service to create a strong, sharable 3G signal that works with up to four AT&T 3G or 4G devices. Although the MicroCell can help eliminate dead or weak signal spots in your home office, its performance can be inconsistent since everything from building construction to power usage can cause cellular interference.Related: With a Dazzling Display, the New iPad Will Be Attractive for Many Business Owners  j5create’s Wormhole Switch3. Wormhole SwitchThink of the Wormhole as a personal cloud. The device, from Woodstock, Ga.-based j5create, lets two computers in the same room work together — even a Mac and PC — by connecting them with a USB cable. Users can copy and paste files and text, as well as share a mouse between computers.Wormhole, which starts at $25, is a plug-and-play alternative to sophisticated networking. An advanced version can also connect smartphones and tablets. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Register Now » March 28, 2012 Whether you’re running a business out of your living room or splitting time between your home and the office, setting up a reliable, well-connected home office should be at the top of your “must-do” list.Fortunately, there are plenty of tools that can make it easier to communicate seamlessly between the home office and your business location. From managing calls across multiple devices to ensuring reliable web and cellular service, these seven technologies can help you build a powerful business network at home.An Amplifi HD Media Router1. Amplifi RouterSlow or spotty connectivity can be frustrating for you and your clients. But if you strengthen your Internet connection, you will be able to do video conferencing and other online collaboration without any irksome interruptions.Built for streaming high-definition media, Amplifi HD Media Routers, from Taiwanese networking giant D-Link, can bear even the heaviest network demands with relative ease. The Amplifi series, which starts at about $150, can be especially useful if you’re sharing a home network with your family. It can handle streaming video, presentations and other rich content without slowing down the home Wi-Fi connection. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Joy Factory’s Zip Touch-n-go multi-device charging station7. Zip Touch-n-goKeeping a small arsenal of mobile devices charged can lead to a tangle of cords in your home office. The Zip Touch-n-go, from Irvine, Calif.-based Joy Factory, is a small, multi-device charging station that essentially does away you’re your array of chargers, cleaning up the clutter near wall sockets and power strips.Available for about $80, the Zip Touch-n-go comes with attachments for Apple devices, Micro USB tools and several other products. Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. 4 min read Hewlett-Packard’s Envy 110 wireless printer4. HP Envy PrinterNeed to print a business document from a mobile device? Then, you’ll need a wireless printer. The good news is that these devices are becoming more affordable.For example, Hewlett-Packard’s Envy 110 is a basic, all-in-one web-enabled printer, copier and scanner that costs about $250. It can meet the needs of entrepreneurs who work at home, including those who use HP’s cloud-based printing service called ePrint.Related: One Way to Manage All Your Business Schedules LoJack for Laptops software6. LoJack for LaptopsWhile several services offer to recover data gone missing from a damaged laptop, Vancouver, Canada-based Absolute Software can help you recover the laptop itself.The firm’s LoJack for Laptops is a subscription-based, downloadable app that manages content, tracks your devices and keeps criminals off your home PCs. It also allows you to lock or even wipe your data if your computer is stolen, and it provides location-based device tracking to help law enforcement retrieve your computer. Subscriptions start at about $30 a year.Related: Four Tools for Improving Office Collaboration Plantronics’ Calisto 835 console5. Calisto 835Making business calls from home often means using a combination of landlines, smartphones and Internet applications. The Calisto 800 series, from Santa Cruz, Calif.-based Plantronics, streamlines the experience.The Calisto 835, priced at about $280, is an audio bridge that lets users manage, dial and switch between calls on a smartphone, landline and PC-based phone. The central console also manages a speakerphone and wireless lapel microphone.last_img read more

Googles Tips for Using Mobile to Market to Holiday Shoppers

first_img Register Now » Mobile device-toting shoppers increasingly rely on their smartphones and tablets to sniff out deals, compare prices, check stock and find stores. So much so that four out of five mobile-carrying customers will rely on their devices to shop smarter this holiday season, according to a recent survey by tech giant Google.We spoke with Jason Spero, Google’s head of mobile sales and strategy, about how business owners can optimize their websites or apps to attract mobile-savvy shoppers during the holidays. Here are four tips he shared:1. Add value to the in-store shopping experience.Make sure your mobile app or site offers consumers a shopping list and other helpful features. Target’s mobile app, for example, allows users to create shopping and wish lists on-the-go. To add items to their lists or gift registries and to check prices, they simply use their smartphone or tablet camera to scan barcodes and QR (quick response) codes.If a particular item is out of stock, you can offer mobile shoppers a QR code on the empty shelf that takes them directly to your e-commerce site to purchase that product and save the sale, Spero says. “Consumers want to use the power of connectivity and the power of the internet when they are inside your store. The ability to have a mobile shopping companion in your hand while you shop is proving immensely valuable.”Another way to enhance shoppers’ in-store experience is to offer QR codes that expand on basic product details. Best Buy, for instance, has added QR codes to each of its in-store item “fact tags” that shoppers can scan to watch product videos and compare customer ratings, key product features and technical specifications.Related: 5 Tools for Building a Holiday Shopping App2. Attract bargain hunters. Mobile devices make it fast and easy to find seasonal deals. So, offer shoppers coupons, e-gift cards, discounts and QR codes that can be scanned and redeemed directly from smartphones and tablets at checkout. Take Walgreens for example. The drugstore chain provides QR code mobile coupons for use in stores, and its mobile app also allows loyal customers to earn, track and redeem Walgreens Balance Rewards points as they shop.Display all daily or weekly discounts and deals within your mobile app. Target’s and Walmart’s apps show off their local weekly in-store ads based on users’ GPS location. Text alerts about promotions also can help reel in mobile app users, but don’t overdo it and alienate customers. For instance, Macy’s sends out a maximum of three special deal text alerts a week. Any more than that could be a nuisance and risk alienating consumers.”Just being aware that price and offer-conscious consumers will walk out of the store they’re in and walk into your store based on finding your deal or sale item on their mobile device is to understand the power of mobile connectivity,” Spero says.Related: Google’s 3 Essentials for Mobile-Friendly Websites3. Be fast and informative.Make sure your mobile site or app is fast loading and informative, Spero advises. “Think of the questions shoppers are asking themselves and design your mobile site to answer them.” For example, prominently display your address and phone number, hours of service, product information and reviews, plus details on how to purchase an item online or in stores.Also, be sure to list a “click-to-call” phone number front and center on your mobile site or app so consumers can instantly engage with your business, Spero says. And it’s important to display your store hours prominently if they are being extended during the holiday shopping period.4. Make it easy to locate the store and specific merchandise. Finding a nearby store easily matters to consumers, so offer a basic store locator function on your website or app and include links to maps and directions. “Also, design your mobile presence to help consumers quickly find out if an item is in stock or not” at different nearby locations, Spero says.For example, Home Depot’s mobile app enables shoppers to find products to be shipped or picked up at a certain store and lets them share products via email and on Facebook and Twitter — all the better to spread the word about their own holiday wish lists.Related: 5 Mobile Marketing Questions Every Business Owner Needs Answered Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Globalcenter_img November 8, 2012 4 min readlast_img read more

3 Essential Things to Teach Employees About Tech Security

first_img Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 5 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Take a moment to survey your office and the people sitting behind computers. Or, if you have a remote workforce, picture your employees in their home offices or on the road, all within arm’s reach of a laptop or mobile device. These individuals, whether you realize it or not, play a vital role in protecting your company from a security breach.You can install all of the latest and greatest security innovations, but if your employees aren’t properly using these technologies and adhering to safe computing practices, you may be more at risk than you think. Many small businesses don’t have an onsite IT staff, so it takes time to get employees to understand and then take proper action to maintain data security. But your business and its valuable data are worth it.To ensure that your team is ready to defend your business to the best of its ability, begin by ensuring that your employees do the following:1. Use email responsibly. Hackers and scammers have become very sophisticated in targeting individuals via their email accounts. Malicious intruders often try to persuade email recipients to take actions that can expose business and personal information without employees even knowing they’ve done anything wrong.Related: 5 Easy-to-Use Tools to Make Business Email More SecureTo protect your valuable business information, advise employees to:• Exercise judgment before opening email attachments. If they are suspicious of an email or email attachment, they should not open it. • Be especially wary of any attachment with a “.exe” filename extension, which may begin executing a program as soon as the attachment is opened.• Manually scan attachments with antivirus software before opening or downloading to your computer.• Be sure the option to automatically download attachments is disabled. Some email programs offer automatic download as a convenience, but it can lead to trouble if a harmful attachment comes through.• Use complex email passwords to make it difficult for hackers to access email accounts. Passwords should include upper and lower case letters, numbers and punctuation marks or other symbols.The U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team has a number of other helpful tips on how email users can protect their systems by using caution with email attachments.2. Be cautious about wireless internet connections. Wireless internet connections are a remote worker’s best friend. Yet, public wireless hotspots can be notorious access points for cybercriminals because they are open networks that do not encrypt data, emails, passwords or any other information transmitted across them. If employees have the choice between a secure wireless connection, which will require a password, and a public hotspot, they always should choose the secure connection.Related: 3 Scary Online Security Mistakes to AvoidBecause employees may sometimes need to use a public hotspot, they should know how to make sure their firewall is on, how to disable file and printer sharing, and how to make folders private. These tasks can be managed through every computer’s System Preferences or Control Panel, where security, internet and user settings can be reviewed and adjusted. Advice on how to manage these tasks can be found in your computer’s help and support index.You also can safeguard data by protecting it on a corporate network or in the cloud. There are numerous cloud storage options for small businesses. Available through Microsoft’s Office 365 offering, SharePoint Online allows users to create online sites to securely store, manage and share files with colleagues and customers. It’s priced at $8 per user per month with an Office 365 subscription, or $4 per user per month for the standalone service. Another cloud storage solution is CloudBerry Labs’ Cloud Drive offering, which allows businesses to store and backup to their cloud vendor of choice simply and seamlessly, starting at $29.99.3. Use smartphones conscientiously. Smartphone use adds an entirely new layer of complexity to managing your data security. These days, employees commonly conduct work-related tasks from their personal mobile devices, opening new gateways for security breaches.Develop a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy that provides parameters on how and when employees can use their personal mobile devices for work purposes. The policy should include specific guidelines for smartphone security, such as a password policy, a list of supported devices and others that are not allowed to connect to the network, and protocol for installing applications, which can become easy entryways for malware.Smartphones also can be easily misplaced or stolen, so take steps to prevent a data breach if this occurs. You can require employees to use mobile tracking services offered by carriers, such as AT&T’s Mobile Locate or Verizon’s My Mobile Recovery, to find the location of lost devices, remotely lock them or erase data. For more assistance in developing a BYOD policy that’s right for your business, consider getting guidance from a local IT provider or expert.Related: 3 Tips for Beefing Up Password Security Register Now » December 27, 2012last_img read more

3 Tips for Growth From the Details Tech Tastemakers Summit

first_img Enroll Now for Free When you bring together influential figures in technology, fashion and entertainment, as the Details Tech & Tastemakers Summit did on Wednesday in New York City, you tend to get colorful results.You may get Nick Wooster, the former menswear fashion director at Bergdorf Goodman, wearing flowery Prada pants. You may get Michael Preysman, the founder of online retailer Everlane, explaining how to create stories people want to share. One thing you’re sure to get is some good advice for starting and growing a business. Here are three tips for charting a path to success from founders at the event:Set clear milestones.By now, most founders know how important it is to start lean. Even so, some of them make the mistake of trying to grow too quickly, investing in hiring or other expansion efforts before nailing down their business model, said Pete Cashmore, founder of tech news website Mashable.Just as important is recognizing when it is time to grow. If you starve your company of talent or other essentials past a certain point, someone else can copy your business model and take over your market.One way to know when you’ve hit that inflection point is to set clear growth milestones. “That’s a very healthy way to run a business,” Cashmore said. “There’s a lot of math you can do in advance. It’s a risk, but you can really lower that by figuring out what’s our ROI per person, at what stages and inflection points can we scale up pieces of our business.”Related: In New Venture, Bonobos Co-Founder Reimagines the Way Men ShopHire people for their passion, not their experience.While experienced employees can be great assets, they can also ruin your company culture. Marc Kushner, founder of Architizer, a social network for architects, said that in the early days of his company he needed to hire experts in sales and internet publishing. But he made a mistake.”I hired people with tons of experience but who lacked a specific passion about what the site was after,” Kushner told the audience. “And what I ended up with was a culture that I hated.”Over the past two years, he has set about retooling the company. Less experienced employees who are more motivated and excited about the Architizer mission have proven to be crucial. So, rather than hiring subject-matter experts, Kushner said, he now taps young architects to fill key positions, because they have the necessary passion for the industry.Cashmore agreed. “You can’t tell people what to do, really,” he said. “Ultimately you can only enable them to do what they want to do.”Work hard, then work harder.As hard as the early days of a startup can be, you may find yourself looking back wistfully on them once your company gets bigger. Growth brings a whole new set of challenges and responsibilities. Don’t expect to ease off the throttle.”Get ready to work really hard, and harder, and more and more,” Olivier van Themsche, founder of The Cools, a social marketplace, told aspiring digital entrepreneurs. “It’s rewarding, but you have to be ready for this.”It was a message echoed by other speakers when giving advice to would-be founders and professional bloggers: Success does not come quickly or by accident. “Sacrifice everything,” street-style photography phenom Tommy Ton said. “Sacrifice your personal life. Be prepared not to eat, to be tired.”An old lesson, and one it seems every entrepreneur has to learn for himself.Related: Why Steve Case Is Betting Millions on Lolly Wolly Doodle 4 min read September 4, 2013 Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience.last_img read more