Monday, December 19, 2005File:Santarchy new zealand.jpg

The conduct by a group of ‘Santas’ making an unclear statement last Saturday is not appreciated in the business district of Auckland, New Zealand. The event, organized in the discussion forum of an online skateboard magazine, caused big media publicity.

Alex Dyer, spokesman for the group, stated that Santarchy in Auckland is part of a worldwide phenomenon. It is disputed if Santarchy is a protest against the commercialization of Christmas or not.

Auckland Central Police spokesperson Noreen Hegarty said to the press that the rampage began in the early part of the afternoon when men wearing ill-fitting Santa costumes threw beer bottles and urinated on cars from an overpass, then rushed through a central city park, overturning garbage bins, throwing bottles at passing cars and spraying graffiti on office buildings.

“They came in, said ‘Merry Christmas’ and then helped themselves,” said a convenience store staff member Changa Manakynda, according to local newspapers.

One writer using the pseudonym ‘Le_SigNagE’ on the Santarchy! (or also known as the Santacon) website commented, “… after all, this is what Christmas is really about… mindless vandalism and petty theft.”

Another writer who posted under the pseudonym Santy Claus said of the media coverage,”There was some major misreporting and Chinese whispers. Breaking bottles and urinating under a bridge, became throwing rocks at buses and urinating on cars from an overpass. The ‘organisers’ as they were, saw little in the way of crime other than one santa attempting to board a foreign vessel by scaling 20 metres along a rope 60 feet in the air. The difficulty and motor skills involved in this task alone should be a defense in itself of being ‘drunk’ and ‘disorderly’.”

Due to Santa’s reputation for integrity and his strict media policy, his sparse communication is mostly one-way: receiving lists from children with wishes for Christmas. It is difficult to get his comment about New Zealands skateboard interested ‘Santas’.

In 1994, the Cacophony Society staged the world’s very first SantaCon in San Francisco. Influenced by the surrealist movement Discordianism, and other subversive art currents.

Monday, January 2, 2006

Anyone riding the OC Transpo Ottawa municipal bus service’s express bus routes this morning and this afternoon, in the Ottawa area, was probably greeted with an empty bus, and inherently, a “fast and efficient” ride. This is in part because most government workers where off from work still celebrating their Christmas holidays and buses were operating on a “holiday schedule;” a lack of planning on behalf of OC Transpo.

Though, according to OC Transpo, the “Holiday Schedule” means buses this week shall be running a little less often, in reality there isn’t that much difference than the regular schedule. To be more precise, from 05h48 until 07h20, on the express 27 route there will be 5 less buses during the “Holiday Schedule” compared to the “Regular Schedule.”

“This is probably going to be fine for the rest of this week, when government employees start coming back to work”, said Yves Roy, an OC Transpo driver, “but today was a holiday and it appears that express routes only had an average of about 2 to 4 passengers.”

“On my ride in to work, at around 6:10 a.m. this morning, nobody else got on the bus. It was like having a personal stretch limo to myself,” said Patrick Roy, a guard for the commissionaires.

Also, at around 4:15 p.m. another OC Transpo bus driver, whom wished to remain anonymous, stated, “You are the first person I picked up today.” He had been working since the morning doing express runs. He then added, “This is a waste of tax payers money.”

Ottawa’s BRT “Transitway,” has indicated that it cost approximately 42.58$ CAN per hour to run a diesel bus. It is estimated that 729 express buses ran today for approximatelly 7 hours costing approximatelly 217,287$ CAN. The cost of operating OC Transpo is split between transit fares collected and the tax base (mostly municipal, with some federal and provincial contributions.)

“We then continued to talk about waste of fuel, employee pay, insurance liability issues and even went into details about such hot political items as the Kyoto Agreement and conservatism,” said Patrick. “Once the driver reached Place d’Orleans the second passenger joined in the conversation. The driver then took a faster alternate route and dropped us off not far from our homes.”

According to Peter Dickson, editor at The Ottawa Citizen, last year OC Transpo buses followed a ‘reduced’ Sunday schedule and this created havoc on the system. Peter asked, if “perhaps this year they where trying to compensate for this inefficiency?”

Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU), OC Transpo’s union representative has indicated, “At current fleet levels, Ottawa’s roads would be choked with about 40,000 more cars each rush hour if not for OC Transpo.”[1] ATU suggests 70 per cent of trips in Ottawa are now made by car. However, seemingly, due to returning vacationers and other reasons, today may have created an increase in the use of cars and influenced this statistic. According to city councillor Clive Doucet’s web page “Currently, 17% of all trips residents make in Ottawa are on public transit, up from 15% in the mid-nineties. As a comparison, Paris’ modal split is 40% or higher taking public transit while Los Angeles’ modal split is around 2% for public transit.” Analysing ridership on a large scale seems to be an important element for the city.

According to Ottawa Mayor Bob Chiarelli, “We used to be able to plan a transit system for up to 12 years ahead, with assured funding.” This of course is in reference to provincial government funding.”It would make me happier if we took all of the (fuel taxes) and put them into the transportation infrastructure,” Mr. Hunt, president of the Canadian Automobile Association says. “But we don’t have a plan.”

“Usually OC Transpo bus drivers have two 4 months bookings, for the fall and the winter and two 2 months booking for the spring and for the summer,” said Yves Roy. “For the first time in March 2005, there was a special 1 week booking for the March break that rearranged and redistributed drivers of certain high school bus runs. During previous march breaks, drivers would show up usually waiting 30 or more minutes in an “idling” bus.”

Is there such thing as to much efficiency? Today is an example of buses and drivers being very efficient. On the other hand, it may be a lack of efficiency within OC Transpo’s booking department, upper management and the governments.

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New Cuba Hotels To Open 25,000 New Rooms In 2020

Posted at December 9, 2018 @ 2:40 am by in Earthmoving Equipment

New Cuba hotels to open 25,000 new rooms in 2020

by

Susan Crown

Recent government sources from the island have unveiled the country s intention to build a further 24,000 hotel rooms in order to keep up with growing demand from increasing tourism to the island. With the popularity of Cuba holidays increasing rapidly every year the island has experienced a boom in tourism arrivals, with tourism figures growing every year.

In 2011 the island welcomed around 700,000 more visitors indicating a substantial growth of 7.3 per cent more travellers enjoying holidays in Cuba last year. This figure is expected to keep growing in 2012 and see further growth in the coming years. In addition to the regular tourism markets in Europe and Canada responsible for sending the largest number of tourists to the island, other source markets are emerging, with Russian and South American travellers now leading the way for growth. To cope with the expected ongoing growth the island s tourist infrastructure needs to expand considerably and it is for this reason that tourism officials have decided to start construction plans on new Cuba hotels in order to cater for the increased flow of tourists arriving to the island.

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Cuba s Vice Minister of Tourism, Alexis Trujillo, has confirmed that the building of these new hotel rooms is being funded by foreign and Cuban investment. He also confirmed that the island plans to increase the diversity of Cuba s tourism product with the 13 new golf courses planned, all of which are in different stages of negotiation talks at the moment, as are the construction of new theme parks to spring up around the whole island.

Regarding foreign investment, Mr Trujillo explained that of the currently existing 58,000 hotel rooms in Cuba, 6000 belong to 30 companies of mixed ownership (divided ownership between Cuban capital and foreign capital) and they await further Cuba hotels to be constructed by these kind of consortia companies.

During a press conference called in the occasion of Pope Benedict XVI to Cuba, Trujillo highlighted the increase of foreign tourist arrivals to the island over the last few years, whose figures have experienced an average growth of 10.5 per cent since 1990.

In an effort to keep up with a growing interest in

Cuba holidays

and increasing demand in hotel occupancy levels, Cuban tourism authorities have just unveiled the planned construction of 24,000 new hotel rooms to be ready to welcome guests in 2012. The island is expecting tourist arrivals to grow by around 8 per cent this year and continue growing in the coming years.

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New Cuba hotels to open 25,000 new rooms in 2020

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Ian Thorpe starts to recover from chest pains

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Ian Thorpe starts to recover from chest pains

Posted at December 8, 2018 @ 2:47 am by in Uncategorized

Friday, March 3, 2006

Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe is reported to be feeling much better after suffering from chest pain for some time.

The Olympic gold medalist was due to swim in the 100m and 200m freestyle and in three relays at the Commonwealth Games, but due to his complaints his fitness has been in doubt. He has been unable to take the drugs needed to overcome his pain as they are banned from the Games.

Thorpe told the media Thursday “It’s actually the best I’ve felt in a while; the antibiotics are starting to work.”

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Latest trial of the One Laptop Per Child running in India; Uruguay orders 100,000 machines

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Latest trial of the One Laptop Per Child running in India; Uruguay orders 100,000 machines

Posted at December 8, 2018 @ 2:40 am by in Uncategorized

Thursday, November 8, 2007

India is the latest of the countries where the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) experiment has started. Children from the village of Khairat were given the opportunity to learn how to use the XO laptop. During the last year XO was distributed to children from Arahuay in Peru, Ban Samkha in Thailand, Cardal in Uruguay and Galadima in Nigeria. The OLPC team are, in their reports on the startup of the trials, delighted with how the laptop has improved access to information and ability to carry out educational activities. Thailand’s The Nation has praised the project, describing the children as “enthusiastic” and keen to attend school with their laptops.

Recent good news for the project sees Uruguay having ordered 100,000 of the machines which are to be given to children aged six to twelve. Should all go according to plan a further 300,000 machines will be purchased by 2009 to give one to every child in the country. As the first to order, Uruguay chose the OLPC XO laptop over its rival from Intel, the Classmate PC. In parallel with the delivery of the laptops network connectivity will be provided to schools involved in the project.

The remainder of this article is based on Carla G. Munroy’s Khairat Chronicle, which is available from the OLPC Wiki. Additional sources are listed at the end.

Contents

  • 1 India team
  • 2 Khairat
    • 2.1 The town school
  • 3 The workplace
  • 4 Marathi
  • 5 The teacher
  • 6 Older children, teenagers, and villagers
  • 7 The students
  • 8 Teacher session
  • 9 Parents’ meetings
  • 10 Grounding the server
  • 11 Every child at school
  • 12 Sources
  • 13 External links

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2008 Young Designers’ Exhibition to interact with the world

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2008 Young Designers’ Exhibition to interact with the world

Posted at December 8, 2018 @ 2:01 am by in Uncategorized

Friday, May 16, 2008

2008 The 27th Young Designers’ Exhibition, opened on May 15 at the Taipei World Trade Center and closes Sunday May 18. It features participation by 87 academic groups in Taiwan and 20 groups from United States, United Kingdom, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, and Australia to showcase various achievements in industrial design. It is recognized by the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID) as the largest show of student creations.

Besides the several design competitions, sponsors like International Forum Design (iF), EPSON, MUJI (in Japanese: ????, Mujirushi Ry?hin), Tsann Kuen Trans-nation Group will showcase different solutions for the design, creative, and cultural industries. The show’s organizer, Taiwan Design Center, also designed several on-site events like “On-line Graduate Season Show”, “Career Match-up”, “Creative and Cultural Showcase and Performance”, “Seminars of YODEX 2008” to link the actual exhibition with the on-line exhibition.

Besides of the previously announced “Wow! Taiwan Design Award”, winners from “2008 Young Designers’ Competition” and “2008 YODEX Interior Design Competition” were announced on Saturday, May 17.

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Law center helps defend open source

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Law center helps defend open source

Posted at December 7, 2018 @ 2:50 am by in Uncategorized

Wednesday, February 2, 2005

Eben Moglen, Columbia University Law Professor, will head the newSoftware Freedom Law Center (SFLC). An initial 4 million dollars has been provided by Open Source Development Labs (OSDL) to fund the project.

The law center will provide free legal service for open source projects and developers. In 2004 OSDL established a separate $10 million Linux Legal Defense Fund providing legal support for Linus Torvalds, Linux kernel creator and end user companies subjected to Linux-related litigation by the SCO Group. The new law center will not be affiliated with the OSDL.

“This is about taking care of the goose that laid the golden egg and not letting wolves come in the middle of the night and steal it away,” Moglen said during a press conference. “This is a legal firm not involved so much in litigating and defending as it will be for counseling and advising and nurturing non-profits and to prevent millions of dollars in litigation.”

Moglen will serve as chairman and director-counsel of the non-profit organization. Also on board as directors are: Lawrence Lessig, law professor at Stanford Law School; Daniel Weitzner, director of the World Wide Web Consortium‘s technology and society activities; and Diane Peters, general counsel at the OSDL. Daniel Ravicher, executive director of the Public Patent Foundation, will help manage as legal director.

Moglen, one of the world.s leading experts on copyright law as applied to software, will run the new Law Center from its headquarters in New York City. The Law Center will initially have two full-time intellectual property attorneys on staff and expects to expand to four attorneys later this year. Initial clients for the Law Center include the Free Software Foundation and the Samba Project.

Other services provided by the SFLC include: asset stewardship, to avoid intellectual property claim conflict; license review and compatibility analysis; legal consulting and lawyer training.

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Polish drug company Jelfa ordered to shut-down over mislabelled drugs

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Polish drug company Jelfa ordered to shut-down over mislabelled drugs

Posted at December 7, 2018 @ 2:19 am by in Uncategorized

Wednesday, November 8, 2006

Polish Prime Minister Jaros?aw Kaczy?ski has ordered the pharmaceutical company Jelfa to halt production following revelations that Jelfa had placed mislabelled medication on the market, whose use could be potentially fatal.

Jelfa distributed vials labelled as Corhydron, a hydrocortisone used to treat allergies and inflammation, but in fact containing Suxamethonium chloride, a drug normally used to cause muscle paralysis during emergency surgery.

The Health Ministry has appealed to people suffering from asthma or allergies to check their medication and return any Corhydron ampoules they possess to the pharmacy.

Polskie Radio reports that the mislabelling was discovered a month ago, but Jelfa and the Polish Health ministry did not inform of the problem.

Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski ordered Jelfa to halt production until it can assure the Polish Government that it can properly manage its production.

The Polish Outlook reports that that drug companies in Poland were operating unregulated since December, 2005 as the regulations has expired. The government was putting in place new regulations.

The owner of Jelfa is AB Sanitas, the largest drug producer in neighbouring Lithuania. The shut-down has been questioned by the Lithuanian Prime Minister Gediminas Kirkilas, who expressed concern over the situation and said that he wants to try to settle the issue diplomatically.

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