<![CDATA[rss-Lifestyle]]> All Rights Reserved for The Cairo post <![CDATA[Lifestyle]]>]]> 100 29 <![CDATA[What the All-New Google Pixel 2 Promises]]>
Following Pixel which was released back in 2016, Google released a new device on October 19 and promised that it features "the best of Google's hardware, software and AI", according to the Telegraph.

Google’s Pixel 2 promises “the best smart-phone camera in the world” based on recent tests done at DxOMark Image Labs, with an image stabilization technology which will make sure none of your future shots are shaken. This can also help tremendously in shooting videos and mobile films.

Pixel 2 also provides a free unlimited storage capacity of pictures in videos in their original quality until 2020; a feature with which Google is directly outplaying its uncanny rival Apple. It is even hinted in the ad for pixel 2, where a woman shows concern that she might run out of storage and the iPhone’s famous message appears, but then she is assured that Pixel is better than that.

The cellular’s features are numerous such as waterproof casing and voice command Selfies, and of course the phone provides a full “Google” experience by allowing you to search almost anything you take a picture of (landmarks, artwork, books, movie posters... etc). Moreover, the phone offers high definition sound and display. As for battery, Google promises that a quick 15-minute charge will give you a battery life of long seven hours. The phone is currently at a price of $937 on Amazon.
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11/21/2017 12:14:52 PM
<![CDATA[China lifts up model who fell on Victoria's Secret catwalk]]>
Xi, who was born Xi Mengyao, went down after stepping on the train of her flowing costume during the show in her hometown Shanghai.

The spotlight was on participants like Xi after Victoria's Secret chose a record seven Chinese-origin models for the annual show -- which is broadcast in over 190 countries -- as it seeks to break into the country's growing lingerie market.

But Xi was the only one of the 55 models in the show to suffer the occupational hazard of falling on the catwalk, in what quickly became one of the top-trending items on China's Twitter-like Weibo.

"I'm sorry to let everyone down. Thanks for everyone's concern," Xi, 28, said on Weibo.

"As a model for seven years, I have fallen on this road many times, but I know no matter how painful it is, I must stand and finish."

"The future road is long. I will always continue walking."

Chinese netizens praised Xi for getting up, straightening the elaborate floral-themed decorative frame on her back and finishing her walk.

"My heart broke watching that. But Ming is still pretty! Go girl!" said one of thousands of Weibo comments.

Supermodel Karlie Kloss chimed in on Xi's feed.

"You handled that with such grace and elegance. Sometimes you trip and fall but it's how you get back up that matters, and you got up like a champ and owned it. Love you Ming!" Kloss said.

The racy exhibition of skimpy bras and panties, now in its 23rd year, was recorded Monday but airs globally on November 28.

The run-up was overshadowed by bad press including the withdrawal of top US model Gigi Hadid on Friday.

Hadid gave no reason, but she had been harshly attacked by Chinese internet users over a video clip showing her squinting her eyes next to a Buddha image, an act construed by critics as racist.

US media also reported that singer Katy Perry was expected to perform but was denied a Chinese visa.

The reports suggested China was upset that Perry had previously draped herself in the flag of diplomatic rival Taiwan and performed in colours implying support for those on the island opposing closer relations with China.]]>
11/21/2017 12:04:48 PM
<![CDATA[et Model of the Week: Miranda Kerr]]>
Born on April 20, 1983 in Gunnedah, Australia, Kerr had a models' instincts from a young age, winning the Dolly/Impulse Modeling competition when she was just 13 years old. After which, Kerr was offered many chances to become a full time model but preferred finishing high school first.

✨❤️✨

A post shared by Miranda (@mirandakerr) on





In 2008, Kerr established herself in the fashion world and Australian modeling history by becoming the first ever Australian Victoria's Secret Angel.

She went on to walk the runways for the biggest names in fashion, including John Galliano, Chanel, Lanvin, Loewe and Dior.

Met Ball flashback ☺️

A post shared by Miranda (@mirandakerr) on



She dominates the covers of major fashion magazines such as Vogue, Elle, Bazaar and GQ.

A post shared by Miranda (@mirandakerr) on



The supermodel is not just a pretty face who established herself among the world’s best paid supermodels; she is also an established businesswoman, with her own line of organic body care products, KORA, which is sold in over 100 countries worldwide. According to her official Facebook page she is also a certified health coach with a degree in nutrition and health psychology.



Wednesday workout 💪🏼💪🏼💪🏼

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She does her best to empower women and has illustrated that through the two books she's authored; “Treasure Yourself” (2010) and “Empower Yourself” (2013).

❤️🙏🏻 ☺️ #abrahamhicks

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11/21/2017 11:28:17 AM
<![CDATA[Salvador Dalí, Surrealism, Disney, art, Renaissance, perfection, anxiety.]]>― Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí was a Spanish surrealist artist known for his visionary, eccentric artworks and behavior. Born on May 11, 1904 in Figueres, Spain, Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí grew up influenced by the works of Renaissance’s masters to create paintings and other types of artworks in his own bizarre and unique style. 1931’s "The Persistence of Memory" was the most prominent among his works, according to Good Reads’ website.

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The Persistence of Memory (1931) by Salvador Dali - Mike Steele/Flicker
This quote can be seen as an invitation to be less anxious about life, love, work and everything; Dalí tells us that it is not possible to be flawless or perfect, so we should not worry and struggle to reach perfection. We should just do what we can do and enjoy doing it.

Fun facts:
•Dalí collaborated with Walt Disney to create an animated short movie titled “Destino,” which was nominated for the Academy Award when it was released in 2003 after the death of both Disney (1966) and Dalí (1989).

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Walt Disney & Salvador Dali’s Destino - Vam Pyr/ YouTube thumbnail
•The surrealist mentioned on many occasions that he was proud of his Arab linage and that it had a great influence on him "My love for everything that is gilded and excessive, my passion for luxury and my love for oriental clothes," according to the website.
Another quote for the road:
“So little of what could happen does happen.” ]]>
11/21/2017 10:47:45 AM
<![CDATA[et Best Dressed: American Music Awards]]>
Best Dressed

Host Tracee Ellis Ross in a sequined Stella McCartney gown.

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Ashlee Simpson is shining in Christian Siriano.

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Selena Gomez in a leather mini-dress by Coach.

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Sadie Sink in chainmail Prada disco dress.

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Sabrina Carpenter in Missoni.

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Kelly Rowland wearing Galia Lahav.

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Nicole Kidman in a black velvet Olivier Theyskens with husband Keith Urban.

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Hailee Steinfeld in a Mugler power suite.

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Demi Lovato wearing Ester Abner.

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Pink in Monique Lhullier.

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Kathryn Hahn wearing Greta Constantine.

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Ciara in Alexandre Vauthier leather dress and her wet hair was the perfect accessory.

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Lea Michelle in J. Mendel.

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Heidi Klum in Versace.

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Bebe Rexha.

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Jenna Dewan Tatum.

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Kehlani.

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Laura Marano.

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Maia Mitchell.

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Worst Dressed

Kelly Clarkson in a custom-made Christian Siriano.

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Yara Shahidi in Prada.

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Julia Michaels in Phuong My.

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Camila Mendes.

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Chrissy Metz.

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Garcelle Beauvais.

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Kat Graham.

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Lilly Singh.

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Madelaine Petsch.

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Rachel Platten.

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11/20/2017 6:50:41 PM
<![CDATA[Universal Children’s Day: #KidsTakeOver]]>
The Convention on the Rights of the Child is an internationally endorsed human rights treaty, which has the objectives of providing freedom and human rights to children without discrimination or violence and the right to an education, life and play.

Article 31 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child declares that children have the mere human right to leisure, play, and participation in cultural and artistic activities. According to IPA World Organization.



Article 31 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child reads: “That every child has the right to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child and to participate freely in cultural life and the arts. That member governments shall respect and promote the right of the child to participate fully in cultural and artistic life and shall encourage the provision of appropriate and equal opportunities for cultural, artistic, recreational and leisure activity.”

“This is a day for children, by children, all over the world to help save children’s lives, fight for their rights and help them fulfil their potential,” the UNICEF stated on their website.


The UN has stated on their website that a celebration for World Children’s Day at their headquarters will be held, where child actress Dafne Keen from “Logan” and Isabela Moner from “Transformers: The Last Knight” and Nickelodeon, will join 150 children at the United Nations Headquarters with singers, songwriters and musicians. Chloe x Halle will debut a specially penned track to mark the day.

The event will be shown live on http

://webtv.un.org/.



The #KidsTakeOver has taken over social media and the world.














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11/20/2017 4:31:21 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Celebrating Universal Children's Day]]>
1. "There can be no keener revelation of a society's soul than the way in which it treats its children." - Nelson Mandela, former president of South Africa

2. “Parents are the ultimate role models for children. Every word, movement and action has an effect. No other person or outside force has a greater influence on a child than the parent.” - Bob Keeshan, producer and actor

3. "The best way to make children good is to make them happy." - Oscar Wilde, author and poet

4. "Adults are just outdated children." - Dr. Seuss, author

5. "Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see." - John F. Kennedy, 35th president of the United States

via GIPHY



6. “If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.” - Albert Einstein, theoretical physicist

7. “It's the children the world almost breaks who grow up to save it.” - Frank Warren, author

8. “The greatest legacy one can pass on to one's children and grandchildren is not money or other material things accumulated in one's life, but rather a legacy of character and faith.” - Billy Graham, American evangelist

9. “I think that the best thing we can do for our children is to allow them to do things for themselves, allow them to be strong, allow them to experience life on their own terms, allow them to take the subway... let them be better people, let them believe more in themselves.” - C. JoyBell C., author

10. "Children are one third of our population and all of our future." - Select Panel for the Promotion of Child Health, 1981

Image_1__Photo_Via_VimoVoices_of_Children_-_Promotional_Video
Photo Via Vimo/Voices of Children - Promotional Video

11. "The greatest gifts you can give your children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence." - Denis Waitley, motivational speaker

12. “Home is where children find safety and security, where we find our identities, where citizenship starts. It usually starts with believing you're part of a community, and that is essential to having a stable home.” - Matthew Desmond, American sociologist

13. "Anyone who does anything to help a child is a hero to me." - Fred Rogers, television personality

14. "Always kiss your children goodnight, even if they're already asleep." - H. Jackson Brown, Jr., author

]]>
11/20/2017 3:15:20 PM
<![CDATA['Robo-taxis' hold promise, and perils, for automakers]]>
Sarah doesn't have a car and has no plans to buy one. Living in a suburb, she has run the numbers and the result is clear: It's much cheaper to order a car only when she needs one.

The "robo-taxi" has also made her life easier, but only after such vehicles upended the business models which carmakers had relied on for decades.

The revolution is already underway, with every major brand racing to create autonomous electric cars and trucks that will always be just a few clicks of a smartphone away.

Fully electric cars are expected to make up 12 percent of the global market in 2025, before jumping to 34 percent in 2030 and 90 percent by 2050, analysts at Bank of America Merrill Lynch forecast last month.

The motivations are clear: Smog is becoming a serious menace in cities around the world, with China in particular demanding cleaner vehicles for its rapidly growing market.
Traffic jams are also eating up hours of commuters' time, meaning car ownership is already no longer a given for many city dwellers.

And carmakers have nimble new rivals: Apple, Google and Tesla -- which last week unveiled an all-electric semi truck -- see a chance to dominate a market that will soon depend as much on software as on engineering.

Industry chiefs aren't waiting: France's PSA is betting on car-sharing and other "services" with its Free2Move division, which it hopes will let it get back into the huge US market.

In Germany, Daimler is working with Bosch to develop self-driving electric cars that could be on the road by the early 2020s, and has already launched its own car-sharing service, Car2Go, in some two dozen cities worldwide.

Its German rival Volkswagen has created Moia, a "social movement" unit exploring e-shuttles, ride pooling and car hailing.

"Even if in the future not everyone is going to own a car, with Moia we're trying to make sure everyone will be a client of ours one way or another," VW's chief Matthias Mueller said.
Robo-taxis could generate 40 percent of auto industry profits by 2030, according to German consulting firm Roland Berger, which expects demand for private vehicles to drop 30 percent in the period.

And industry experts warn that the automakers which fail to adapt to the shift risk might not survive.

But that means investing billions in batteries, charging infrastructure and autonomous driving technologies with little prospect of seeing a payoff anytime soon.

VW announced Friday a plan to spend 34 billion euros ($40 billion) over the next five years on hybrid and electric cars and services in a bid to "reinvent" the automobile.
But for now, so-called "zero emission" vehicles remain a tough sell: Renault's Zoe range of electric cars, which is has offered since 2012, made up just 1 percent of its sales last year.

Its chief, Carlos Ghosn, is hoping that figure will reach 5 percent by 2022.
The contest will be costly for all automakers, with PriceWaterhouseCoopers estimating that production costs for the next generation of electric cars will be 20 percent higher than traditional models, while warning of "serious problems" for returns on investment.

"The speed" of the shift toward an electric future "will have to be taken on by all automotive companies," PSA's chief executive Carlos Tavares said at the Frankfurt auto show in September.

Yet Western carmakers and government officials already fear they are lagging behind Asian rivals, with China in particular making headway on electric motors and batteries.
That led the EU Commission to urge the creation of an "Airbus for batteries", with European companies joining forces for large-scale battery production.

"This technology is too important to import it from overseas," the commission's vice president charge of energy, Maros Sefcovic, warned.]]>
11/20/2017 1:20:47 PM
<![CDATA[Victoria's Secret fashion show struts into Shanghai]]>
English heart-throb Harry Styles headlines the musical acts who will perform as the world's top models strut in skimpy bras and underwear in Shanghai's Mercedes Benz Arena, in what the US lingerie brand dubs the sexiest show on earth.

The show, now in its 23rd year, has faced past criticism for leaning heavily towards western models, but this year it will feature a record 55 women from 20 countries.

They will include eight from China -- also a new high -- led by the country's top model Liu Wen, the first Asian on Forbes' annual list of the world's highest-paid fashion divas. She revelled in the excitement of "walking" in her homeland.

"The VS show is different each year, but this time it is even more special because it is in China and in Shanghai," Liu, 29, told AFP during make-up on Monday afternoon ahead of the show.

"We can be thankful that China is such a big market, so there could be so many Chinese faces appearing. So personally I feel proud of my own country."

Victoria's Secret is hoping to win a slice of that market, with Monday's glitzy gala following the opening of its first two super-stores in China this year, in Shanghai and Chengdu.

The company's sales in its home US market have sagged this year, with analysts blaming its slow-footed response to a trend away from constructed bras towards more comfortable intimate wear.

Victoria's Secret is banking on its name recognition and top models like Adriana Lima, Alessandra Ambrosio and their Chinese counterparts to win over women in China who are increasingly interested in expressing their sexuality, say social and fashion analysts.

- Quality and cachet -

As Communist-era prudity slowly recedes, lingerie has become one of the fastest-growing segments in the Chinese women's apparel market, according to market-intelligence firm Mintel.

The firm predicts it will grow to 148 billion yuan ($22 billion) by 2020, up 32 percent from 2015 numbers.

"Chinese consumers are receptive to foreign brands that ooze quality and cachet," said Matthew Crabbe, Mintel's regional trends director, calling the Victoria's Secret fashion show "a great way to raise consumer awareness".

But he added that Victoria's Secret was entering "a tough retail market with many competitors", both foreign and domestic.

"Foreign brands have to do their homework. They must learn about the local market dynamics, the culture and the consumers -- especially how diverse consumers are across China," he said.

The show has not been not without controversy.

Top US model Gigi Hadid withdrew Friday after Chinese netizens savaged the 22-year-old over a months-old video clip showing her making a squinty-eyed "Asian" face -- accusing her of racism.

US fashion media have also run unconfirmed reports that Russian models Julia Belyakova, Kate Grigorieva and Irina Sharipova, and Ukraine's Dasha Khlystun, were slated to walk in the show but were denied Chinese visas.

The show's climax comes when a model dons the jewel-encrusted "Fantasy Bra".

This year Brazil's Lais Ribeiro will model a $2 million bra by Swiss-based luxury-goods company Mouawad studded with nearly 6,000 gemstones.

The show tapes in Shanghai on Monday night but will not air globally until November 28.]]>
11/20/2017 12:53:00 PM
<![CDATA[Santas get final marching orders at London school]]>
Dressed head to toe in the traditional red velvet costumes, bushy white beards and black boots, the would-be Santas take notes and engage in role plays in an anonymous south London office building.

Their teacher, James Lowell, who runs an events company called Ministry of Fun, said being a good Santa is about training, not improvisation.

"It is a big deal. Children are coming to meet him because he is a special person," he said.

The encounter has to be "magical", said Lowell, who warns children cannot be left disappointed after hours of waiting to speak to Father Christmas.

The slovenly appearance of some Santas -- wearing trainers or smoking -- is also a source of irritation for the 52-year-old, a some-time Father Christmas.

The first step is getting the costume right.

Lowell said the materials have to be high quality.

A proper costume can cost around £1,000 (1,120 euros, $1,300) and a hand-made beard about the same.

Good Father Christmases also have to be able to move with an ambling gait and are encouraged to practise bellowing over and over the greeting: "Ho, ho, ho!"

Being multilingual is a plus and trainees have to be able to name Father Christmas's nine reindeers.

There are some golden rules to remember, like never asking a child his or her name, whether they have written a letter or what presents they have asked for.

Because "you know: you are magical, you are Santa", Lowell said.

The final instructions -- never make promises so as not to put parents on the spot and create disappointment and prepare thoroughly for the dreaded question: "Are you the real Father Christmas?"

- 'Symbolic figure' -

Instructor James Lovell adjusts the costume of a student Santa during a training session at The Ministry of Fun Santa School in London, on November 16, 2017
Modern-day Father Christmas are also encouraged to do some swotting up at home to keep up to date with the latest toys, video games and consoles.

"We have to do research to know what is on the shelves," said Santa David, who has been Father Christmas for 26 years.

Like the other Santas, Santa David said he wanted to remain anonymous to preserve an air of mystery.

Santa Dan, an actor who is celebrating his 14th year as Father Christmas, said: "I don't think there is something more joyful than seeing the reaction, the absolute joy on their face."

On average, Father Christmases only have three minutes to wow children, given the long queues.

Despite the weight of the costume, the heat and the noise in department stores, Santa Dan said the real skill is to "maintain that energy that it is just as special for the first child as the last."

Santa Dan said Father Christmas has proved enduring due to his "generosity" and "kindness".

Lowell said: "He's become a kind of symbolic figure, but not in a religious way. He is the figure that binds it together for everybody.

"It does no harm at all... Children believe in him because adults want to believe in him too."]]>
11/20/2017 12:09:03 PM
<![CDATA[Gold leaf from Napoleon's crown fetches 625,000 euros]]>
The sale price far exceeded the estimate of between 100,000 and 150,000 euros, Osenat auction house said.

The leaf was one of six cut from the crown ahead of the 1804 coronation, because the monarch considered it too heavy.

The goldsmith Martin Guillaume Biennais gave the spare leaves to each of his daughters - with the auctioned gold carving having been passed through the family to present day.

A leaf which was worn during the coronation but was later detached from the crown sold in the 1980s for 80,000 francs.

Around 400 works dedicated to the French emperor were sold at Sunday's auction, including a decorated box engraved with gold flowers, also made by Biennais, which belonged to Napoleon's wife Empress Josephine which sold for 150,000 euros - three times more than expected.]]>
11/20/2017 12:06:44 PM
<![CDATA[Apple pushes launch of HomePod smart speaker to early 2018]]>
“We can’t wait for people to experience HomePod ... but we need a little more time before it’s ready for our customers. We’ll start shipping in the U.S., UK and Australia in early 2018,” an Apple spokeswoman said via email.

Apple introduced the voice-controlled HomePod in June. The speaker, which can make music suggestions and adjust home temperatures, takes aim at Amazon.com Inc’s Alexa feature and Echo devices.

Apple has forecast between $84 billion and $87 billion in revenue for the holiday - mostly driven by sales of its $999 iPhone X - so it’s unlikely that missing a few weeks of sales of its $349 speaker will affect its financial results, Bob O‘Donnell, founder of Technalysis Research, said.

The indirect effects will have a stronger negative impact, he said. Apple is working to keep its Siri voice assistant relevant in the face of competition from Amazon’s Alexa and Alphabet Inc’s Google Assistant, both of which are featured on smart speakers from those companies.

People use voice assistants more often on smart speakers than on phones, so even if owners of Amazon or Google speakers also have an iPhone, there’s a good chance that they’re talking to Alexa or Google Assistant as much or more than Siri.

“Last holiday season, smart speakers were huge, and this season they’re going to be huge,” O‘Donnell said. With Apple’s delay, “there will now be some people who make a different choice. The market’s getting more and more competitive.”

Apple is also counting on HomePod to boost subscriptions to Apple Music and block the rise of rival Spotify. Smart speakers from Google and Amazon let users give voice commands to play Spotify, but Apple Music does not work on the rival devices.

Apple’s main pitch for its HomePod smart speakers was superior audio quality, but that advantage appears to be slipping: Sonos, which also pitches its speakers’ audio quality for music lovers, now features support for the Alexa voice assistant.

Earlier this year, Amazon announced the Echo Plus, a smart speaker with better audio quality, and Google confirmed to Reuters that its Home Max speaker with improved speakers will ship in December, though it has not given a specific date.

But Apple could still have a surprise or two in store. The company gave scant details about its speaker in June, leaving it room to announce exclusive music content or other unexpected features, said Brian Blau, an analyst with Gartner.

“When HomePod comes out, you’ll probably hear some great content from artists that are familiar and popular, and there’s probably going to be some other special aspects as well,” he said.]]>
11/19/2017 1:58:05 PM
<![CDATA[Victoria's Secret to charm China with fashion gala]]>
Coming to China is all about business: the company's bottom line is sagging and it is staking its future on the growing Chinese market.

Here is everything you should know about the annual festival of music, lace and flesh, now in its 23rd year.

China or bust

Western markets for intimate wear have already matured, but China's is still blossoming as rapid societal changes help loosen Communist-era prudity.

China's women are a growing consumer force and more interested than ever before in expressing their sexuality, fashion analysts assert, and they increasingly have the money to do so.

Lingerie is among the fastest growing segments of Chinese women's apparel market, reaching 112 billion yuan ($17 billion) in 2015, according to market-intelligence firm Mintel Group, which projects it will grow by another 32 percent by 2020.

Victoria's Secret, whose business performance has withered amid US competition and a product realignment, has taken notice, opening its first two Chinese flagship stores this year, including a huge four-story Shanghai emporium.

Local talent

Making the VS runway is one of the most coveted gigs in modelling, but the company has been accused of bias toward leggy blondes or Latinas in selecting its "angels" -- so-called for the trademark wings they wear.

But last year it tapped a record four Asian models and, in a nod to this year's hosts, Shanghai will feature six of Chinese origin, according to reports.

They are led by China's top model Liu Wen, the first Asian on Forbes' annual list of the world's highest-paid fashion divas.

She'll reportedly be joined by Shu Pei, Sui He, Xiao Wenju, Shanghai's own Ming Xi, and Paris-born Estelle Chen, who will prowl the catwalk along with top earners such as Adriana Lima, Alessandra Ambrosio, Jasmine Tookes, and Karli Kloss.

Fallen Angel

Holding the racy event in Communist-ruled China seemed destined to get somebody's knickers in a twist.

Sure enough, US model Gigi Hadid withdrew Friday after Chinese netizens accused her of racism and warned her to stay home over a video clip of her making a squinty-eyed "Asian" face.

Hadid, who had apologised to Chinese fans in September, gave no reason for suddenly withdrawing, and it was not clear whether VS or China's government may have dropped her to avoid a PR fiasco.

US fashion media also have run unconfirmed reports that Russian models Julia Belyakova, Kate Grigorieva and Irina Sharipova, and Ukraine's Dasha Khlystun, had been denied Chinese visas, for reasons unknown.

Bring the bling

Critics pan the show as a sexist and bloated branding stunt, but it nevertheless manages to generate significant buzz with its mix of bling and star power.

Musical performers through the years have included the Spice Girls, Phil Collins, Destiny's Child, Sting, Bruno Mars and Lady Gaga, and A-list celebs typically occupy audience seats that reportedly cost thousands of dollars.

The 2017 performers will include Harry Styles, Grammy winner Miguel, and Chinese singer Jane Zhang.

The night's highlight comes when a model dons the jewel-encrusted "Fantasy Bra".

The honour this year goes to Brazil's Lais Ribeiro, who will model a $2 million bra made by Swiss-based luxury-goods company Mouawad and studded with nearly 6,000 gemstones including diamonds, yellow sapphires, and blue topaz.

Bra Wars

Even with the splashy China debut, Victoria's Secret and its premium products -- a single bra in its Shanghai store runs up to 658 yuan ($100) -- may find a tough battle on its hands.

A range of established domestic and foreign brands like China's Aimer and Cosmo Lady, and France's Aubade, already have staked out Chinese turf, and growth rates are tapering off.

Mintel said annual growth spiked to 18 percent in 2011 but projects that to slow to just 4.4 percent by 2020.]]>
11/19/2017 1:02:17 PM
<![CDATA[Is that dish Egyptian or not?]]>
Here is a list of the most popular dishes in Egypt and the Middle East region with their origins.

Mahshi Warak Enab: also known as Dolmades or Stuffed vine Leaves. It is originally a traditional Greek dish which was made out of vine leaves stuffed with minced lamb meat and rice, according to the New York Times, However some argue that the delicious dish originated in the Turkish kitchen and from there it made it to the Middle Eastern and Egyptian cuisine in the 14th century.

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1- Dolma, stuffed grape leaves, Turkish and Greek cuisine - Lesya Dolyk/Flicker

Moussaka: while some argue that Moussaka is also of Greek origin, an ancient Arabic cooking book from the 13th century called "A Baghdad Cookery Book" had the recipe in it which suggests otherwise, according to the Culture Trip’s website. The dish is mainly a backed eggplant casserole with tomato sauce and variations of it have meat and are covered in a layer of béchamel sauce, which allows the dish to be present in both humble and extravagant kitchens.

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2- Moussaka - February 2, 2016 jules/Flicker

Koshari: even though labeled as the “National dish of Egypt,” it is actually said to have come from an Indian origin. Koshari is Egypt’s beloved dish; whether you eat it from a street vendor or a fancy restaurant, it will always keep its original ingredients and unique taste. It consists of rice, brown lentils, macaroni noodles, small macaroni, tomato sauce, chickpeas and crispy onion garnish with your preferred edition of hot sauce and Da’a (garlic and vinegar sauce). According to My Koshary’s website, the name Koshari comes from the Indian “khichri” which refers to a dish of rice and lentils.

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3- Egyptian Koshary - Dina Said - Wikimedia commons

Ta’amia: or Falafel is defiantly Egyptian. The deep fried Fava-bean dish is said to go back to the time of Pharaohs, according to World-food history’s website. In Egypt the snack/side dish usually goes alongside another Fava-beans based dish “Foul,” creating the traditional Egyptian breakfast. Falafel spread from Egypt to the Middle East where Lebanese and Syrian people started making it with Hummus.

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4- Falafel - Marco Verch - Wikimedia commons
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11/19/2017 12:18:18 PM
<![CDATA[et Fashion Designer of the Week: UNTY]]>
unty 1 Photos courtesy of UNTY/Omar Harbi

UNTY was founded in 2013 by Omar Mobarak and Omar Fayez as a collaboration between art and fashion. Omar Mobarak spoke to Egypt Today about the brand, where it stands and how they see it evolving in the future.

Omar, who grew up surrounded by skate-and-surf culture, fell in love with the lifestyle and the brands embodied in it. His mother helped inspire him; fashion was always “a big deal” to her and she used to buy him the coolest t-shirts since he was young. At a young age, he realized a simple item of clothing such as a t-shirt, can be a reflection of one’s identity and therefore he became very particular about what he would wear and later on what he would design.

UNTY 2Photos courtesy of UNTY/Omar Harbi

As for his background in fashion, Omar stated that it was all self-taught; he originally majored in art and graphic design at the AUC. However, his knowledge of fashion was accumulated through observation and reading.

UNTY’s current collection is their 10th and it was inspired by cigarettes and a hidden love as Omar says.

“This collection was inspired by a personal experience. I took that experience and metaphorically compared it to cigarettes, in the sense that we know smoking can kill you but you keep going back for it. In regards to which cigarettes, Cleopatra fit the most, due to the character of the ancient Egyptian queen. Historically she was one of the most powerful women, whose character was defined by charm and intellect. Her alluring character and stories inspired the designs and direction of the collection. The story of how she met Julius Caesar for example; Cleopatra wanted to take advantage of Julius Caesar’s anger towards her brother Ptolemy, so she had herself secretly smuggled into his palace to meet Caesar. She entered past the guards rolled up in a carpet. Julius Caesar was smitten by her and immediately saw the potential of being lovers and allies.
Nine months later, their first child was born. I made a tribute to that story with the design of the rolling paper, titled “Cleo-Bafra”, as she was rolled into the palace.”

unty 14 Photos courtesy of UNTY/Omar Harbi

The placement of the design on the hoodies is hidden inside of the pocket, a tribute to her being hidden when they met.”

His upcoming 11th collection will have two hoodies, three sweaters and possibly a special edition t-shirt, to be released later.

Omar relies heavily on the use of Egyptian cotton for his designs; he is open to using more materials in the future. As for his favorite designers? He said that locally it has to be Kojak and internationally the very talented Hiroki Nakamura.

unty 16 Photos courtesy of UNTY/Omar Harbi

In terms of his brand’s future and where he sees it going, Omar wholeheartedly believes that it is more important that people who wear his brand find it relatable more than trendy, as he remarked to Egypt Today.

“I would like to expand into different markets that fit with the brand. The route I’m taking is a lot more organic because it really matters to me that people who represent UNTY wear it because they relate to it, and actually means something to them. I’d rather sell 200 t-shirts to people who love and understand the brand than 1,000 people wearing it because someone with a lot of followers wears it.”

unty 7 Photos courtesy of UNTY/Omar Harbi

That is why UNTY is more focused on the lifestyle aspect of the brand and the culture that inspires it, hoping to have more opportunities of collaboration with all types of brands, artists, and products in the fashion industry.

unty 19 Photos courtesy of UNTY/Omar Harbi
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11/19/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Martin Luther King Jr.]]>
Born in the state of Georgia on January 15, 1929, Martin Luther King Jr. grew up as a natural leader as he became a Baptist minister, assuming one of the very few roles from which a black man could lead in 1950’s America.

Throughout his life, King fought for civil rights, raising the awareness of the public of the importance of equality and justice. He delivered his infamous “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington in 1963 which established him as one of history’s most renowned public speakers and in 1964, he received the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts in fighting racism and discrimination through peaceful means, according to Good Reads.

In 1986, January 15, the day on which King was born, became Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a national holiday in the United States of America in remembrance of the civil rights legend who still stands today as a beacon of hope to all those who are oppressed or unfairly treated, according to the website.

Facts:
● After nine years of his assassination on April 4, 1968, King was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Jimmy Carter in 1977.

● In 2004, King was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal as an acknowledgment of his efforts in fighting for human rights.


Another quote for the road:
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

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11/19/2017 10:50:31 AM
<![CDATA[89-year-old grandma takes cooler Selfies than yours]]>
However, Kimiko Nishimoto is not a typical Selfie-taker. Currently, at the age of 89, Nishimoto keeps finding new creative ways to take and photoshop self-portraits.

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via Kimiko Nishimoto’s Facebook page

Wavy Wednesday 👘 #kimikonishimoto

A post shared by Ryan James MacFarland (@ryan_macfarland) on



It all started around 17 years ago when out of curiosity, she enrolled in a photography course that her own son teaches.



True #kimikonishimoto

A post shared by georgi@asic (@georgia.tasic) on



That was it, something sparked inside 72 year- old Nishimoto and set her on the beginning of a path which is now leading her into both Japan’s photography galleries and the world wide web’s memes.

And I'm out! Skrrrt! #kimikonishimoto #SUMMERSEVENTEEN

A post shared by Drεw Rεiningεr ☻ (@drewzr_) on



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11/19/2017 10:35:13 AM
<![CDATA[Azzedine Alaïa passes away at 77]]>
While his parents were both farmers, his sister and a family friend were the first to ignite his love for fashion. He even lied about his age to enroll in École des Beaux-Arts in Tunis. In 1957, he moved to Paris and worked as a tailor at Christian Dior, only to open his very own fashion house in the 1970’s that catered to private clients. Ten years later he would release his first ready-to-wear collection and would soon become a body-con and structure icon while dressing some of the greatest fashion influencers in the world, including Grace Jones, Tina Turner, Madonna, Lady Gaga, Janet Jackson and Michelle Obama.




Known as a fashion industry outcast, Alaïa never stuck to the fashion calendar and always created his collections at his own pace. Alaïa was nicknamed “The King of Cling” due to the beautiful outcome his creations would have when worn, as they “fit like a glove”. From evening dresses to knits and leather, Alaïa knew how to create, construct and tailor wearable artworks that would complement every woman’s body and empower.



François-Henri Pinault, Kering's chairman and chief executive, told BoF, "It is with great sadness that I learned of the passing of Azzedine Alaïa. In the fashion world, he was a great and major couturier. Everything was at the top with him: couture, art, the standards he aimed at, his dedication to his work, his mastering of techniques, and all the women he dressed. He was an artisan in the noble sense of the term, and a man fiercely attached to his freedom. He was a friend."



Alaïa will always be remembered in fashion as the designer that created to his own rhythm, while blocking out the noise of the industry.




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11/18/2017 10:05:40 PM
<![CDATA[Gigi Mules: Look Good, Do Good]]>

The ‘Gigi Boot’ of course was a huge success that raised enough funds to build schools and has impacted the lives of 1,595 young students by providing them with daily education to empower them for the future. As we all know, the pen is mightier than the sword and education is the main solution to reducing poverty.



Stuart Weitzman and the PoP partnership first began back in the Spring of 2016, when the exclusive ‘Yellow Show’ campaign was created. After the rewarding results of the campaign, Weitzman reached out to shoe lover and super model Gigi Hadid and then the ‘Gigi Boot’ was born in October 2016. Now come fall 2017 and Gigi is back with the limited edition ‘The Eyelove’ and ‘The Eyelovemore’ mules.



Pencils of Promise (PoP) is a non-profit organization that ‘builds schools and provides quality education promising to increase literacy rates in Ghana, Guatemala, Laos and Nicaragua.’ All while offering teachers support by providing them with training that assists them effectively in teaching their students, and building schools where students can go for a safe learning environment. They also establish water and health programs and teach kids about water hygiene and sanitation so they can live full healthy lives.

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11/18/2017 4:21:45 PM
<![CDATA[Elizabeth II, Prince Philip celebrate 70 years married]]>
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip will celebrate their platinum wedding anniversary on November 20, marking 70 years since they married in the splendour of Westminster Abbey.

Despite three of their four children (Charles, Anne and Andrew) having divorced, this royal union has endured through the decades without any public hint of marital strife.

Now, they join a small club of couples who have spent seven decades together.

No events are planned to celebrate their landmark, but the bells of Westminster Abbey will ring at 1300 GMT in tribute.

Elizabeth and Philip will spend the day with other members of the royal family, a Buckingham Palace spokesman told AFP.

After 70 years of marriage it's a burgeoning clan, with four children, eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

They expect to welcome a sixth great-grandchild in April, when Prince William and wife Kate Middleton's third child is due.

The 96-year-old Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, retired from the public eye this summer, enjoying his newfound free time reading and painting.

For her part the Queen, at 91, is slowly passing over some of her official duties to her son Prince Charles, now aged 69.

- Meeting at 13 years-old -

It was a version of love at first sight.

Elizabeth was aged just 13 when she first laid eyes on her future husband Philip, then a dashing 18-year-old blond army officer.

The pair may have met in their teens, but it would be eight years until the nation celebrated with pomp their fairy-tale wedding at Westminster's famous abbey on November 20, 1947.

The princess dazzled, dressed in a satin dress embroidered with roses and decorated with 10,000 pearls and sparkling crystals.

In this post-war period, it was "a flash of colour on the difficult road we're taking," said Winston Churchill, leader of a Conservative Party then in opposition.

Fresh memories of the war and fears of anti-German sentiment meant several of Prince Philip's German relatives -- including his three surviving sisters -- were not invited to the ceremony.

Prior to the wedding, the Queen Mother asked her future son-in-law if he would cherish her daughter.

"Cherish Lilibet? I wonder if that word is enough to express what is in me," he replied, using the Queen's childhood nickname.

He went on to say that he had "fallen in love completely and unreservedly" with her.

- Sacrifices -

After their honeymoon -- at Balmoral, the Scottish holiday estate of the royal family -- the newlyweds moved to Malta where Philip, a naval officer, had been stationed.

However, the premature death of King George VI, in 1952, put an end to the more carefree life the young couple had adopted on the Mediterranean island, and propelled Elizabeth to the throne.

It also forced Philip to sacrifice his career in the Royal Navy to become the Queen's spouse.

The son of a Greek prince banished from the country, he renounced his titles and Greek Orthodox faith and became a British citizen to marry Elizabeth, adopting his mother's anglicised name, Mountbatten.

But their children would take the Queen's family name, Windsor.

On his 90th birthday in 2011, she surprised her husband by making him Lord High Admiral, the titular head of the Royal Navy and a role she had held since 1964.

It was reported to be a show of gratitude for his decades of unstinting support as her consort.

That support has come alongside a steady stream of gaffes, sometimes with xenophobic hints, which the Queen appears to have forgiven him for.

"I think the main lesson that we have learnt is that tolerance is the one essential ingredient of any happy marriage," Philip said in a golden wedding anniversary speech in 1997.

"You can take it from me that The Queen has the quality of tolerance in abundance."

The man she referred to as her "rock," also once remarked: "My job first, second and last, is never to let the Queen down."]]>
11/18/2017 12:56:06 PM
<![CDATA[Puffer jacket maker Moncler goes cold on catwalk collections]]>
“The group must vary and open up towards different horizons,” Chief Executive Remo Ruffini said in the statement.

Moncler said it would end its ready-to-wear catwalk collections Gamme Rouge and Gamme Bleu, which featured at the Paris and Milan fashion shows this year.

Designers Giambattista Valli and Thom Browne are also leaving to work on their own brands, Moncler said.

Moncler did not elaborate on its new strategy, though in recent years it and its peers have faced increased pressure to offer customers more collections during the year, including limited and exclusive capsule lines.

Traditionally, fashion houses have presented only two collections a year, spring-summer and autumn-winter.

However, with younger clients expected to make up almost half of the $290 billion (£222 billion) luxury industry by 2025, according to consultancy Bain & Co, fashion houses have to move more quickly and focus on e-commerce.

Moncler stores will become venues for more frequent launches of new designs, Ruffini told the Financial Times.

Founded as a traditional ski wear brand in the French Alps in the 1950s, Ruffini helped turn the group into a trendy fashion label after he took control in 2003 and floated it on the Milan stock market in December 2013.

Shares in Moncler are up almost 40 percent this year, in line with French luxury conglomerate LVMH (LVMH.MI).

Moncler, whose puffer jackets can cost more than 1,000 euros (£891.6), said in October it was working on “important projects” after posting a higher-than-expected 15 percent rise in 9 month sales.

The group’s 2016 sales topped 1 billion euros and it expects further growth this year.]]>
11/18/2017 12:49:28 PM
<![CDATA[Macron is popular - at least when he's imprisoned in a snow globe]]>
While it is common in Britain to find mugs or boxes of biscuits bearing the image of the Queen, it has never been a tradition in France to market souvenirs depicting national leaders.

“We felt that for once there was a French president we could do this with, like other countries have done with the Queen, the Pope or (ex-U.S. President Barack) Obama,” said 61-year-old Maryse Bazzoli. “Macron is quite unconventional.”

She and her business partner have designed snow globes showing him sitting in his Elysee office or in front of the French flag.

With no official approval from the Elysee Palace, they have sold hundreds in a month in their souvenir shops, outselling their traditional Eiffel Tower globes and leaving the small firm which manufactures them racing to keep up with demand.

“They’re bought by fans who say they absolutely want them on their desk, and people who laugh and say: I know exactly who I’ll buy it for, it will really annoy them,” said Bazzoli. “He sells well.”

Opinion polls show the 39-year-old Macron’s popularity plummeting since he came to power, not only because of discontent with his labor and welfare policies but also with his “Jupiterian” presidential style - remote and grand.

Some 57 percent of voters are unhappy with Macron’s first six months in power, a BVA survey showed on Thursday.]]>
11/18/2017 12:44:44 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Jennifer Niven]]>
As she states in her Goodreads bio, Jennifer Niven started writing at a very young age, completing two biographies from her perspective as a child, a big number of songs, stories and illustrated books which she drew herself, all that by the time she was 10 years old. Niven is currently New York Time’s bestselling author of All the Bright Places.

In this quote, Niven is trying to state that people usually disregard the simple joys of life and the random acts of kindness and grace, not knowing that after all, these are the things which matter the most.

Fun facts:
● All the Bright Places has already been set to be a big production motion picture directed by Miguel Arteta and starring Elle Fanning in the role of Violet Markey.

●Niven has started writing professionally back in 2000 and has written 9 books so far most celebrated, of which are All the Bright Places and Holding up the Universe.


Another quote for the road:
“I know life well enough to know you can’t count on things staying around or standing still, no matter how much you want them to. You can’t stop people from dying. You can’t stop them from going away. You can’t stop yourself from going away either. I know myself well enough to know that no one else can keep you awake or keep you from sleeping.”


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11/18/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[This new Heater Jacket will be your savior through winter]]>
Well, now there is! Led by CEO Scott Brenchley, 8K Flexwarm is a brand which aspires to merge technology with outerwear that is both fashionable and practical through their “versatile premium apparel.”

If the cold is the only thing standing in the way of your outdoor adventures, with Flexwarm’s new Heater Jackets you can go anywhere at any time without bothering yourself with finding a source of heat. Camping in the forest in autumn or going for a safari in the desert in winter or even hanging out with your friends on a breezy day, you can always take Flexwarm’s heater jacket and turn the heating on or even adjust it accordingly.

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Via 8K Flexwarm’s official Facebook page

Through advanced touch technology and a connection to your smartphone via Bluetooth, the jacket allows you to isolate your body from outer cold and control and adjust the heat inside the jacket according to your personal need.


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11/17/2017 10:54:28 PM
<![CDATA[5 things you should know about newborn babies]]>
Here are five things you should know about newborn babies and the experience of having them around according to WebMD’s website:

They sleep more than you think: Even though they wake up constantly, usually screaming, newborn babies sleep around 16 hours per day and wake up to eat or change diapers. As they get older, babies tend to sleep more during the night than during the day.



They usually sleep facing right: Around 85 percent of babies prefer to sleep facing the right side while sleeping on their back for the first few months, which might have something to do with why so many people are right-handed, according to WebMD’s website.

Babies are not born smelly: As they form and until they are born, babies are protected inside the mother’s womb against any type of bacteria and germs. That also explains why their first poop is never smelly as it consists of fluids which the baby digested inside the mother and it is not until after a day or so of feeding the baby that their feces start gaining the usual colors and smell.



They cry a lot: Even if it is scary for parents at first, it is not always because of pain when babies cry, they cry for many other reasons such as hunger, wet diapers and sleepiness, so there is no need to worry unless you think they are unsafe and no one is watching them.

They are a life-changing form of attention-attractors: As soon as you have a baby you will find yourself becoming a part of a worldwide community of people who know what you are going through, people who are curious about it and people who really think that their baby is the cutest baby ever.

Cherish every moment of it. ]]>
11/17/2017 10:48:03 PM
<![CDATA[Victoria's Secret gala hits snag in China as model pulls out]]>
The announcement is the second apparent snag to hit the US lingerie maker's A-list underwear extravaganza set for Monday, following reports that three Russians and one Ukrainian model had failed to obtain Chinese visas.

Hadid, ranked fifth on Forbes' list of the highest-paid women models last year at $9 million, had excitedly announced her participation in the show in August.

She gave no reason for the reversal.

"I'm so bummed I won't be able to make it to China this year," the 22-year-old said on Twitter.

"Love my VS family, and will be with all my girls in spirit!"

Hadid's pull-out averts a potential PR disaster for Victoria's Secret, which is hoping to shore up a sagging bottom line with a push into China's growing intimate-wear market.

The company opened its first flagship stores in China this year and Monday's show is the first held outside the US or Europe.

Chinese internet users lashed out at Hadid after her sister Bella -- another of the three dozen or more models expected in Shanghai -- posted an Instagram video in February showing Gigi squinting her eyes while holding up a Buddha-shaped cookie.

After Hadid announced in August that she would come to Shanghai, many Chinese accused her of racism and warned her to stay away.

She posted a bilingual apology on China's Twitter-like Weibo on September 1, declaring her "respect and love for the people of China" and swearing she meant no harm, but even that drew flak.

A Victoria's Secret spokesman declined to comment when asked by AFP whether Hadid pulled out on her own, was asked to by the company, or whether Chinese authorities applied any pressure.

- Not welcome -

Most Chinese Weibo comments on her withdrawal were celebratory.

"Suddenly I have better feelings about VS. If she had come, I would never buy VS my entire life," said one posting.

Others, however, expressed regret, especially following Hadid's apology.

"What a pity. I like her a lot," said one.

Speculation has also swirled over the participation of Russia's Julia Belyakova, Kate Grigorieva and Irina Sharipova, and Ukraine's Dasha Khlystun, after unconfirmed reports suggested they were denied Chinese visas.

The Victoria's Secret spokesman declined comment.

"That's getting into a Chinese government issue. Victoria's Secret is not going to comment on that," the spokesman said.

It was not immediately clear whether Bella Hadid would still attend and the spokesman referred all line-up questions to each model's individual agencies.

The annual show, viewed by millions worldwide, features the planet's top models including Adriana Lima, Alessandra Ambrosio, Jasmine Tookes and Lais Ribeiro.

It tapes Monday and airs globally November 28.

Hadid joins a list of foreigners who have worn out their welcome in China.

Argentine international footballer Ezequiel Lavezzi, who plays for Chinese club Hebei China Fortune, apologised in May after publicity photos showing him pulling the corners of his eyes back in a slant-eyed gesture angered many. He is still with the club.

A number of others including singers Bjork, Elton John and Lady Gaga, and actors Richard Gere and Sharon Stone, have either been banned or pilloried for words or actions deemed as criticising China on sensitive topics like Tibetan independence and human rights.]]>
11/17/2017 11:20:26 AM
<![CDATA[Slightly elevated blood sugar not tied to higher risk of heart attack]]>
Diabetes has long been linked to an increased risk of coronary artery disease as well as higher odds of heart attacks, cardiac arrest and what’s known as unstable angina, when plaque in the arteries ruptures and blocks the blood supply to the heart.

Research has been mixed, however, on whether slightly elevated blood sugar that is sometimes called “pre-diabetes” might also increase the risk of these heart issues.

For the current study, researchers examined data on patients already hospitalized for heart attacks or other serious problems that occur when the blood supply to the heart is suddenly blocked. This included 162 people with normal blood sugar, 202 individuals with slightly elevated blood sugar and 183 diabetics.

Compared to people with normal blood sugar, patients with diabetes were more than twice as likely to have a heart attack or other serious blockage over three years of follow-up. People with elevated blood sugar, but not at diabetic levels, had a slightly higher risk of these heart problems, but the difference was too small to rule out the possibility that it was due to chance.

“Those with pre-diabetes may be at higher risk for coronary artery disease, but not as high as those with diabetes,” said Dr. R. Brandon Stacey of Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

“This provides further motivation for individuals who are pre-diabetic to change their lifestyle to prevent the development of diabetes,” Stacey, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email.

Past research suggests that between 5 percent and 10 percent of people with blood sugar levels that are above normal will progress to full-blown diabetes each year - but it isn’t “inevitable,” according to the World Health Organization. Studies also indicate that weight loss and lifestyle changes can return blood sugar to normal.

For the current study, researchers looked at ultrasound images to see whether blood sugar levels influenced the development of what’s known as vulnerable plaques, a mixture of fats and white blood cells that accumulate on artery walls. When these plaques break free, they can cause a heart attack or stroke.

Patients with diabetes and slightly elevated blood sugar were no more prone to these plaques than individuals with normal blood sugar, the study team reports in JACC: Cardiovascular Imaging.

But during the study, roughly 26 percent of the diabetes patients had a heart attack or other major cardiovascular event, compared to roughly 16 percent of those with normal or slightly elevated blood sugar.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how slightly elevated blood sugar might contribute to the risk of serious heart problems.

Another limitation is that researchers didn’t know how long the patients with diabetes had that condition, whose effects on the heart can escalate over time, Dr. Akiko Maehara of Columbia University Medical Center and colleagues note.

It’s also possible that blood sugar tests used in the study didn’t always correctly identify people with slightly elevated blood sugar or full-blown diabetes, said Dr. Muhammad Abdul-Ghani, a researcher at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio who wasn’t involved in the study.

“Patients with diabetes who experience a coronary event should receive a more aggressive treatment for their coronary disease than patients without diabetes,” Abdul-Ghani said by email.

There’s a lot that patients with slightly elevated blood sugar can do to prevent diabetes from developing, said Dr. Melvyn Jones, a researcher at University College London who wasn’t involved in the study.

“Lifestyle, lifestyle, lifestyle - i.e., lose weight, exercise and stop smoking,” Jones said by email. “And if you have pre-diabetes get your blood sugar checked fairly regularly so that if you become diabetic you can do something about it.”]]>
11/17/2017 11:18:23 AM
<![CDATA[Cataract surgery tied to lower risk of early death for older women]]>
Researchers examined data on 74,044 women with cataracts, including 41,735 who underwent cataract surgery. Compared to women who didn’t get operations, those who did were 60% less likely to die from all causes during the study period.

“The results of this study suggest that cataract surgery may have benefits beyond improving vision even in patients who are elderly or sick,” said senior study author Dr. Anne Coleman, a researcher at the Fielding School of Public Health at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Cataracts often develop with age, and by age 80 roughly half of Americans either have cataracts or have had cataract surgery, according to the National Eye Institute.

Women in the current study were 71 years old, on average, and were part of the Women’s Health Initiative, a study that has been running for more than two decades and collects information on demographics, medical conditions and lifestyle habits.

From 1993 to 2013, a total of 6,878 women who had cataract surgery died, as did 6,123 women with cataracts who didn’t get the procedure.

This translates into a mortality rate from all causes of 1.5 deaths per 100 women each year in the surgery group and 2.6 deaths per 100 women each year in the other group, researchers report online October 26 in JAMA Ophthalmology.

With surgery, women also had a 37% to 69% reduced risk of death due to pulmonary, accidental, infectious, neurologic and vascular diseases, and cancer, the study also found.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how cataract surgery might help people live longer. It’s possible that other factors influence both risk of death and likelihood of getting cataract surgery, for example.

“We cannot say for certain if people with cataracts who pass away are dying from factors specifically related to their vision loss (e.g. a fatal car accident from not being able to see well),” Coleman said by email.

“But we believe people with decreased vision have decreased overall functioning with daily activities such as exercising, taking medicine and going to doctor appointments, all of which may be related to overall lifespan,” Coleman added.

Another limitation of the study is that because it only included women, it’s not clear how surgery would influence survival odds for men, the authors note.

However, several previous studies have linked cataract surgery to lower odds of premature death for both men and women, Coleman said.

Cataracts can’t be prevented, but the study results do suggest that there are benefits to treating them, said Dr. Justine Smith, author of an accompanying editorial and a researcher at Flinders University in Adelaide, Australia.

“This research argues for ready access to cataract surgery for older women,” Smith said by email. “In a similar vein, this research argues for regular eye checks for older people.”]]>
11/17/2017 11:17:08 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Magdi Yacoub]]>
Son of a surgeon born in Bilbeis, Al Sharqia in Egypt, Sir Magdi Habib Yacoub studied at Cairo University and became a doctor in 1957.

“I always wanted to be a surgeon, because I had a lot of admiration for my father, who is also a surgeon. I also wanted to be a heart surgeon. That was motivated by the fact that my young aunt, a sister of my dad, died in her early 20s of a correctable heart disease.”

Sir Yacoub founded the Chain of Hope foundation in 1996, which serves as the bridge connecting experts who provide life-saving heart treatments to children in developing countries.

“I have a charity called the Chain of Hope targeting children from poor areas where heart surgery is not available, and we offer our services.”

A message Sir Magdi Yacoub published on the Chain of Hope website notes that it is a little-known fact that 1 child in every 100 is born with a heart defect. Most of these defects can be corrected by operations which are performed as a matter of routine in developed countries. In contrast, if uncorrected, these defects can cause considerable suffering and premature death. This afflicts a massive number of children around the world.

Chain of Hope was created to help as many of these children as possible. Children are flown for urgent treatment to one of the hospitals in the organization’s international network and volunteer teams are sent to their countries to help develop local services in the longer term.

“I feel privileged to be a link in the chain that helps these children,” Yacoub, president and founder of Chain of Hope, stated.

He was a close friend of Princess Diana, who was also a huge supporter of the Chain of Hope charity.



The charity holds a gala each year with auctions that aim to amass donations sponsoring children in developing counties for surgery and treatments. The upcoming gala will be hosted by comedian Omid Djalili on Friday Nov 17, 2017, at the iconic Grosvenor House on Park Lane, London.

An exclusive live performance from Grammy award-winning Jamaican superstar Sean Paul will also take place. Paul is renowned for number 1s such as “Rockabye,” “Cheap Thrills” and “Get Busy”. In addition, Elie Saab fans can look forward to a spectacular fashion show featuring their amazing haute-couture collection!

Tickets are now sold out for the gala.



He was among the three surgeons who were the first to perform an open heart surgery in Nigeria in 1974. In 1986, he was a part of the team that developed the techniques of the heart-lung transplantation at the National Heart and Lung Institute. He also led a British research team at Harefield hospital in 2007 aiming to grow a part of the human heart using stem cells. These efforts were all exerted in order to overcome the shortage of transplant heart donations.

Some of his highly notable awards include an Order of Merit and a Knight bachelor from Queen Elizabeth II. He also received an Order of the Nile, which is Egypt's highest state honor.

In another life he would have loved to be a farmer. He says, “if I wasn't going to be a surgeon, I wanted to be a farmer or grow oranges or something like that. I grow flowers, now, orchids. That is something that I find very interesting.”

]]>
11/16/2017 8:37:19 PM
<![CDATA[Slovenians celebrate first ever gastronomic festival]]>Novemmmber Gourmmmet.

Organized by the Slovenian Tourist Board, food fest runs until the end of November and celebrates the country’s rich food scene in the capital Ljubljana.

“Slovenia is one of Europe’s hottest gastronomic hotbeds, offering the Tastes of Ljubljana, the Open Kitchen food market and numerous top quality restaurants, cafés and bars,” according to the Slovenian Tourist Board, announcing that this year “Ljubljana hotels and organizers of culinary tours and grape tastings have joined their powers … and will present grape routes, food and grape fairs and special culinary tours.”

Photo courtesy of Aviareps
Photo courtesy of Aviarep

The initiative aims not only to draw foodies, who will get to take part in a range of culinary activities and attend classes, but also visitors to the country “for a closer look and taste of Ljubljana, one of the culinary capitals of Europe,” organizers say.

“More and more tourists are visiting Slovenia and Ljubljana due to its culinary range, encompassing everything from traditional dishes to the most creative contemporary fusion. Memorable experiences, such as cooking classes with top Slovenian chefs, are gaining in popularity, while the food and grape tours of Ljubljana Tourism are becoming bestsellers,” Slovenian Tourist Board said in a statement.


While tourism from Egypt has yet to pick up, it’s becoming a trendy destination with GCC travelers. “A total of 76,163 visitors from the GCC visited the Slovenia in 2016, resulting in a 10 percent increase compared to 2015 figures,” according to a recent statement by the Slovenian Tourist Board. “Amongst those, the number from Saudi Arabia was the highest at 43,483 travelers, which was an increase of 11.5 percent compared to the year before. Visitors from the United Arab Emirates were the next highest, followed by visitors from Kuwait.”
]]>
11/16/2017 3:32:42 PM
<![CDATA[Going strong after 70 years: UK's Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip celebrate platinum anniversary]]>
Princess Elizabeth, as she was at the time, married dashing naval officer Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten at London’s Westminster Abbey on Nov. 20, 1947, just two years after the end of World War Two, in a lavish ceremony attended by statesmen and royalty from around the world.

Seventy years on, Elizabeth, 91, and her 96-year-old husband will mark their platinum anniversary with a small family party at Windsor Castle, the monarch’s home to the west of London.A spokesman for Buckingham Palace said there would be no public event to mark the occasion.

Greek-born Philip, a descendant of Elizabeth’s great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria in his own right, has been at his wife’s side throughout her 65-year reign, the longest in British history. He was the person who broke the news to her in 1952 that her father, George VI, had died and that she was now queen.

“One of the secrets of this very, very long marriage, and it’s an incredibly impressive anniversary, is the fact Prince Philip has always seen it as his main duty to support the queen, to help her in whatever way he can,” royal historian Hugo Vickers told Reuters.

“He is the only person who can actually tell the queen absolutely straight what he thinks, and if he thinks some idea is ridiculous he will say so in whatever language he chooses to use.”

The couple first met when they attended the wedding of Prince Philip’s cousin, Princess Marina of Greece, to Elizabeth’s uncle, the Duke of Kent, in 1934.

Philip then gained the attention of his future wife when the then-13-year-old princess made a visit with her parents to Britain’s Royal Naval College at Dartmouth in southern England where he was a cadet.

“TRULY IN LOVE”
“She was truly in love from the very beginning,” the queen’s cousin Margaret Rhodes, a life-long friend and one of her bridesmaids who died last year, wrote in her memoir.

Their engagement was announced in July 1947 and they married four months later. With Britain still recovering from the war, the wedding offered a rare burst of color and pageantry against an austere background of rationing and shortages.

The 21-year-old princess, who wore an ivory silk Norman Hartnell gown decorated with 10,000 seed pearls, had to collect coupons for her dress like other post-war brides and the couple spent their honeymoon in southern England and Scotland.

While some two billion people were estimated to have watched the couple’s grandson Prince William marry his wife Kate in 2011, their own wedding was only broadcast live to some 200 million radio listeners, although highlights of the day were captured on grainy black and white film footage.

“I can see that you are sublimely happy with Philip which is right, but don’t forget us is the wish of your ever loving & devoted Papa,” King George wrote to his daughter after the wedding.

While royal watchers say Elizabeth and Philip have had their ups and downs like any married couple, they have avoided the travails of three of their four children whose marriages have ended in divorce, most notably heir Prince Charles’s ill-fated union with his late first wife Princess Diana.

Capture
Britain's Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip visit Pangbourne College near Reading, May 9, 2017 - REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

It was at the couple’s 50th wedding anniversary in 1997 that the queen paid a rare personal tribute to her husband.“He has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years,” Elizabeth said.

No other British monarch has celebrated such a landmark, and indeed Elizabeth was the first to mark a diamond wedding anniversary in 2007.

Philip, who has suffered health issues in recent years and was hospitalized in June, retired from active public life in August. They both attended a memorial service on Remembrance Sunday on Nov. 12, although a royal source said the monarch had decided not to lay a wreath so she could watch from a nearby balcony alongside her husband.

“Without Prince Philip the queen would have had a very tough and lonely life. He’s been a complete support to her, a rock to her, from the moment she was on the throne,” royal biographer Claudia Joseph told Reuters.]]>
11/16/2017 1:47:53 PM
<![CDATA[Wonder Woman sword, Spider-Man drone land on 'Worst Toys' list]]>
The group, World Against Toys Causing Harm, released its “10 Worst Toys” list on Tuesday, around the start of the holiday shopping season, with the goal of alerting parents to playthings that could hurt their children.

Besides the sword, which the group warned could cause “blunt-force injuries,” and the drone’s “potential for eye and body impact injuries,” the list includes toys that could appeal to smaller children and contain removable pieces considered a possible choking hazard.

Flying toys, including the drone, and those that shoot projectiles, including toy Nerf guns, have long appeared on the list. While the products’ boxes contain extensive warnings about the dangers of flying items, the group’s executive director, James Swartz, said children could not use them in a safe way.

“Really, look at the packaging,” Swartz said. “Is it realistic to use the product as the manufacturer intends? If the answer is no, it’s better to stay away from it.”
The list also includes several less-obvious threats.

Among them: fidget spinners that can break apart, posing a choking hazard; a pull-along pony with a 19 inch (48 cm) cord the group said a small child could strangle on; and a baby doll with removable hair elastics labeled a choking hazard.

Capture
Mattel "Wonder Woman Battle-action Sword" is displayed during the World Against Toys Causing Harm (W.A.T.C.H.) news conference to announce their nominees for the "Ten Worst Toys" this holiday season in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., November 14, 2017 -

Makers of the toys included on the list, including Mattel Inc, which makes the sword; Skyrocket Toys LLC, the drone manufacturer; and Nerf maker Hasbro Inc, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The Toy Association views the list as “needlessly frightening,” said Joan Lawrence, the trade group’s senior vice president of safety standards and regulatory affairs.

“We have strong safety standards in this country,” Lawrence said, adding that parents should follow the package’s directions about the age group for which a plaything is suitable.

The association released a survey this month showing 82 percent of parents think the age ranges are merely suggestions. Lawrence urged parents to take them more seriously.

“If you’re going to buy a bicycle ... there are instructions on how to safely use the bicycle, like wearing a helmet,” Lawrence said. “We don’t say, ‘Don’t buy the bicycle.’ What we do is find ways to enjoy it safely.”]]>
11/16/2017 1:44:23 PM
<![CDATA[Pope gets white-and-yellow Lamborghini to auction for charity]]>
The donated Lamborghini Huracan, which normally sells for more than $200,000, was signed by the pope outside his Vatican residence and will be auctioned by Sotheby‘s, with proceeds given to the pontiff to help the needy.

The Vatican said all the money would go to projects to help Christians return to rebuild their homes in Iraq’s Nineveh Plains that were destroyed by Islamic State militants.

They will also go to help female victims of human trafficking and forced prostitution and to two Italian groups which provide medical services in central Africa.

Francis has shunned the papal limousines used by his predecessors in favor of a simple blue Ford Focus.White and yellow are the colors of the Vatican flag.Lamborghini is part of the Volkswagen group.]]>
11/16/2017 1:40:35 PM
<![CDATA[Cairo Wedding Festival Season 3: The bridal extravaganza ]]>
It was a true wedding festival as it offered many opportunities for young couples from vendors that included wedding dresses, jewelry, makeup artists, hairstylists, wedding and honeymoon planners, professional photographers, DJs, hotels, firework shows and entertainment providers, in addition to everything needed in new homes and medical services.

The festival was attended by young Egyptian starlets Sheri Adel, Noor Al-Kadiki, Shahinaz, Dana Hamdan and Raghda Shalhoub.

Photo_by_Egypt_TodayMahmoud_Hassaballah_(1)
Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah


Photo_by_Egypt_TodayMahmoud_Hassaballah_(2)
Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

Photo_by_Egypt_TodayMahmoud_Hassaballah_(3)
Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

Photo_by_Egypt_TodayMahmoud_Hassaballah_(5)
Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah]]>
11/15/2017 9:01:16 PM
<![CDATA[The first Hijab-wearing Barbie is finally here]]>
As part of the Sheroes doll collection that was launched in favor for Barbie to recognize real-life female heroes such as gold medalist Olympian Gabby Douglas, writer/director and Academy Award nominee Ava DuVernay, fashion model Ashley Graham and many more.

Mohammad visited the Mattal design center to give a helping hand in the dolls’ design process.

“We are celebrating Ibtihaj Muhammed as the latest Barbie Shero by unveiling a one-of-a-kind doll in her likeness,” Barbie Mattel published the statement on their website. “As an inspiration for countless little girls who never saw themselves represented in sports and culture, we hope this doll shows girls they can be anything.”



From Nike to Max Mara, major players in the fashion industry have started catering to the Middle East market by featuring hijab-wearing models in their campaigns and on the runway. Back in 2016, Dolce & Gabbana launched a ready-to-wear autumn/winter collection of abayas and hijabs with the signature D&G colorful prints.



A hijab is a sign of modesty worn by Muslim women all around the world; despite being a controversial matter nowadays, the fashion industry decided to fight back against Islamophobia and highlight the message of love, peace and acceptance in their advertising campaigns and on the runway by featuring Hijab-wearing models.

Also, technology giant Apple has joined the movement with their recent debut of 12 new emoji characters of women wearing hijab. Earlier this year, Condé Nast launched the magazine Vogue Arabia with the supermodel of the new generation, Gigi Hadid, who was born to a Palestinian father and an American mother, on its first cover.

It is also worth mentioning that Halima Aden is the first veiled model to have walked the international catwalk with Max Mara and to be featured in American Eagle's #ICan campaign.



Zahra Lari is an Emirati figure skater. She was born on March 3, 1995, and she is the first figure skater in the United Arab Emirates to compete internationally. She is also the first hijabi figure skater in the world. Plus, she is featured in Nike’s campaign for Nike pro-Hijab.

First practice is done 💪🏼.. focusing on tomorrow 🇦🇪 #adfbma #nike #nikeprohijab #justdoit #UAE

A post shared by Zahra Lari (@zahralari) on



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11/15/2017 7:23:38 PM
<![CDATA[Celebrities who are much younger than they look]]>
Bella Hadid:

A post shared by Bella Hadid (@bellahadid) on


If you do not already know her, it would be nearly impossible to guess that she is younger than 26, but you would be surprised to learn you have guessed wrong.
Born on October 9, 1996, the supermodel is just 21 years old.

🔮 by the Incredible @victordemarchelier

A post shared by Bella Hadid (@bellahadid) on


Kate Upton:

Blinded by the light 🎵🎶📸

A post shared by Kate Upton (@kateupton) on


Even though she has made it to the covers of Vogue, Vanity Fair, Elle and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition and appeared in blockbuster movies such as “Tower Heist” and “The Other Woman”, Kate Upton has not even passed her mid-twenties yet. Born on June 10, 1992, she is now 25.

#WBW #Oscars 💋

A post shared by Kate Upton (@kateupton) on



Harry Styles:

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Harry Styles November 2014 - Eva Rinaldi/Wikimedia commons

Formerly, he was introduced to the world as a part of the global teenage phenomenon One Direction, but he is currently gaining more and more success after his debut as a solo singer and an actor through the latest Christopher Nolan movie “Dunkirk”. Harry Edward Styles, born on February 1, 1994, is just 23 years old.

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Harry Styles of One Direction – Singapore, May 2017/AFP

Zara Larsson:



The Swedish singer/songwriter was a big hit in Sweden years before she was introduced to the global music scene after she won the 2008 Swedish version of Got Talent. Her latest album, “So Good”, ranked in the top 10 music albums in 11 countries, according to Redbrick’s website. But how old is Zara? Born on December 16, 1997, she is just 19 years old.


Elle Fanning:



She has recently stunned everyone with her performances in movies like “The Neon Demon”, “20th Century Women” and “The Beguiled”, displaying a level of maturity and talent on the screen that can hardly be matched. However, born April 9, 1998, Elle is just 19 years old.

#fbf to the L'Oréal beach for @madamefigarofr #lorealista 📸: @damon_baker

A post shared by Elle Fanning (@ellefanning) on

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11/15/2017 12:30:00 PM
<![CDATA[Dimming Sun's rays to cool planet will affect storms too: study]]>
Depending on the hemisphere in which such aerosols are released, hurricanes in the North Atlantic would become weaker or stronger, they reported in Nature Communications.

Moreover, efforts to engineer lower global temperatures could induce severe drought in northern Africa's Sahel, a region already challenged by climate change, they warned.

With only one degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming so far compared to pre-industrial times, the world has already seen an upsurge of deadly heatwaves, droughts, and storms engorged by rising seas.

The 196-nation Paris Agreement, adopted in 2015, enjoins the world to cap global warming at "well under" 2 C, and even 1.5 if possible.

But efforts to achieve these goals by reducing greenhouse gas emissions have stalled, leading some scientists to consider "quick fix" engineering solutions that will brake the rise in temperatures.

"In the last decade, solar geoengineering has rapidly garnered attention as a plausible method to counteract global warming," the authors note.

- 'Potentially devastating impacts' -

So-called solar radiation management works by preventing some of the Sun's rays from hitting the planet's surface, forcing them instead back up into space.

Nature sometimes does the same: debris from the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines, for example, lowered the planet's average surface temperature for a year or two afterwards.

Small-scale experiments to test the behaviour of particles in the upper atmosphere are set for next fall, in the state of Arizona.

But the potential for a single country to deploy the technology unilaterally "could have potentially devastating impacts in other regions," they warned.

Earlier research pointed to changes in regional rainfall patterns, and the disruption of monsoons, as potential side-effects of dimming the Sun's radiative force.

Scientists also warn about "termination shock" -- the sudden warming that would likely occur if the system were to fail.

To better understand these pitfalls, a team of scientists led by Anthony Jones of the Met Office Hadley Centre ran state-of-the art climate models measuring likely changes in the ocean and atmosphere.

These showed that adding aerosols in the northern hemisphere would decrease the frequency of cyclones there, while injecting them in the southern hemisphere would have the opposite effect.

The models also showed "potentially devastating impacts" in the Sahel.

The researchers called for the rapid implementation of international regulation to oversee the deployment large-scale solar geoengineering schemes.

"It is going to take a long time before we can predict the effects of solar geoengineering well enough to be confident that we could design an intervention that was both safe and effective," commented John Shepherd, a professor at the University of Southampton, who did not take part in the study.]]>
11/15/2017 12:20:20 PM
<![CDATA[US approves first pill with digital tracking device]]>
The pill, called Abilify MyCite (aripiprazole tablets with sensor), is designed for patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression, according to the US Food and Drug Administration.

A patient ingests the pill, and a sensor inside the pill activates when it reaches the stomach fluids, sending a message to a wearable patch.

This patch then transmits the information to a mobile app, so that a doctor and up to four caregivers, friends or family members can see the information through a web-based portal.

"Being able to track ingestion of medications prescribed for mental illness may be useful for some patients," said Mitchell Mathis, director of the division of psychiatry products in the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, in a statement Monday afternoon.

"The FDA supports the development and use of new technology in prescription drugs and is committed to working with companies to understand how technology might benefit patients and prescribers."

Although the sensor can alert caregivers, the makers of Abilify, Japan-based Otsuka Pharmaceutical, said it is unclear whether the tracking device will actually help improve patients' ability to take their medication daily as prescribed.

The FDA approved Abilify in 2002 to treat schizophrenia, which affects about one percent of the US population.
The ingestible sensor used in Abilify MyCite was first allowed on the market by the FDA in 2012.

The sensor technology and patch are made by Proteus Digital Health, and are approved for use with existing medications in the United States and Europe.
But until now, the FDA had not approved a sensor-pill combination.

Some experts raised questions about the choice of Abilify as the drug in which to test the sensor, and the "Big Brother" connotations of being tracked.

"Patients with a tendency towards paranoia may feel a bit uncomfortable being monitored in this fashion," said Seth Mandel, chairman of psychiatry at Northwell Health's Huntington Hospital in New York.

"Patients with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia are very often non-compliant with their medication and the result is almost always a relapse," he added.

Still, he said the pill may "potentially be a significant advance in our never-ending struggle to improve patient adherence to psychotropic medication."
Scott Krakower, assistant unit chief of psychiatry at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, New York, said more research is needed to see how the pill affects people in real life.
"This could be a really helpful device to help some of our patients," who often "have difficulty with focusing and concentrating and may forget to take their medications," he told AFP in an email.

"On the other hand, one of the goals we set for patients is to improve quality of overall functioning with their lives.

"In some situations it may hinder the autonomy some patients are working toward in their treatment, or it may enable patients to rely on an instrument instead of themselves for treatment." ]]>
11/15/2017 11:31:41 AM
<![CDATA[Largest diamond ever auctioned sold for record $34 mn in Geneva]]>
The 163.41-carat flawless D colour diamond, suspended from an emerald and diamond necklace called The Art of Grisogono, sold for 33.5 million Swiss francs ($33.8 million, 28.7 million euros), after taxes and commissions, at the Christie's autumn jewel auction.

This marks "a new world-record price for a D colour diamond at auction," Rahul Kadakia, auctioneer and head of Christie's international jewels division, told AFP.

D is the highest colour grade attributed to a diamond, indicating that the stone is completely colourless, and thus extremely rare.

With a drawn-out round of rapid-fire bidding starting at 20 million francs, the necklace was finally sold to a telephone bidder, who wished to remain anonymous, for well above the asking price of 25 million.


But some had expected The Art of Grisogono, which Christie's described as a "masterpiece of unparallelled beauty and exquisite workmanship", to fetch even more.
"I am disappointed that the Art of de Grisogono didn't sell for a more dazzling price," said Tobias Kormind, head of 77 Diamonds, a large European online diamond jeweller, who had said before the sale he thought the price might top $50 million.

The flawless, D colour 11A type diamond was cut from a 404 carat rough rock which was discovered in February 2016 in the Lulo mine in Angola -- the 27th biggest rough white diamond ever discovered.

The rough was analysed in Antwerp and cut in New York, where a team of 10 diamond-cutting specialists were involved in mapping, plotting, cleaving, laser-cutting and polishing the giant rough rock into a polished, flawless diamond.

A team from Swiss luxury jeweller de Grisogono then created 50 different designs around the 163.41-carat diamond, before opting for an asymmetric necklace with the stone as its centrepiece.
The left side of the necklace is made up of 18 emerald-cut diamonds and the right side composed of two rows of pear-shaped emeralds.


Another highlight of Tuesday's auction, a large pink diamond once set in the crowns of numerous French kings and emperors, including Napoleon, meanwhile sold for far more than the $6-9 million estimate.

It went under the hammer, again to an unidentified telephone bidder, for 12.5 million francs, with the final price tag after taxes and commissions ticking in at 14.4 million francs ($14.5 million, 12.3 million euros).

The gem was named after Cardinal Mazarin, an Italian cardinal and diplomat, as well as a great art collector, who served as chief minister under Louis XIII and Louis XIV, and who bequeathed it and other diamonds to the Sun King in his will.

The pink stone, originally dug out of the ancient mines of Golconda in south-central India, sparkled on the crowns of Louis XV and Louis XVI, who was guillotined during the French Revolution.
And it graced the crown of Napoleon I, Napoleon III and Empress Eugenie, among others.
It has since passed through the hands of famous French jeweller Frederic Boucheron and later the Baron von Derwies.
Christie's said the seller was a private collector, but did not reveal their identity.
Tuesday's sale marked the first time the diamond appeared at auction in 130 years.
It has been auctioned off once before: It was among the French Crown Jewels sold off in 1887 -- 17 years after France's Second Empire collapsed and Napoleon III and his wife Emperess Eugenie sought exile in England, leaving their jewels behind.

Christie's jewel auction, which raked in sales totalling 105.4 million Swiss francs, will be followed Wednesday by a similar auction at Sotheby's.

The highlight of that show, also in Geneva, will be The Raj Pink, the world's largest known fancy intense pink diamond, which Sotheby's is aiming to sell for $20-30 million.]]>
11/15/2017 11:26:56 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Friedrich Nietzsche]]>Friedrich Nietzsche

Born in 1844, Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was a German philosopher who dedicated his life to studying and writing about good, evil and human morality. His work influenced many of the greatest minds that came later on in the 20th century, such as Michel Foucault and Albert Camus. Nietzsche produced many great philosophical works, such as “Beyond Good and Evil” and “Human, All Too Human”. His most famous book is “Thus Spoke Zarathustra”, according to Biography’s website.

In this quote, Nietzsche is trying to convey that if one has a purpose to live for, he/she can go through the hardest difficulties of life no matter what they are. Affirming that if we know why we are alive, it will be a lot easier to handle how to live.

Fun facts:
● Nietzsche was a close friend of famous German musician Richard Wagner. In fact, his first book “The Birth of Tragedy out of the Spirit of Music” (1872) was heavily influenced by Wagner’s music.

● Unfortunately, Nietzsche’s mental and physical state deteriorated towards the end of his life. He suffered from dementia and went to live in the care of his mother and later on with his sister until he died in 1900, according to Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Another quote for the road:
“Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.”


]]>
11/15/2017 11:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[From Black Eyed Peas star to cancer survivor: Taboo tells all]]>
The six-time Grammy winner went to the doctor and got a gut-wrenching diagnosis: he had testicular cancer.

He had more than 100 million record sales to his name and a string of worldwide dance hits like "I Gotta Feeling" and "Where Is the Love?", but it meant nothing in the face of cancer's cruel reality, he told AFP in an interview.

At first, he was only able to piece the details together slowly.

"They didn't tell me what type of cancer I had. They didn't tell me what stage I was in. They just told me, Mr Gomez, you have cancer," said Taboo, 42.

"My life flashed before my eyes. I thought about my kids, I thought about my wife. Nothing prepares you for the shock of someone telling you you have that horrible disease."

That was in 2014. It was only last year that Taboo went public about his struggle with cancer -- now in remission after a gruelling series of chemotherapy treatments.

Today, the Los Angeles native is an ambassador for the American Cancer Society and a vocal ally and fundraiser for cancer survivors everywhere.

He spoke to AFP ahead of the World Cancer Leaders' Summit in Mexico City, which gathered high-level policy makers Tuesday for an annual exchange on fighting the world's second-leading cause of death.

It was not an easy journey to get there.

First Taboo went through an agonizing series of chemotherapy treatments: 12 weeks of six-hour daily sessions that he describes as "war, torture and a nightmare" rolled into one.

"That was the feeling," he said.

"I've never been to war, but internally, when they're destroying your insides to kill everything that's good to kill that one thing that's bad, which is the tumor, it scarred me psychologically, emotionally, inside and outside."

The idea that dealing with cancer is a "battle" has come in for criticism lately from some who resent the violence of the analogy and the implication that those suffering from the disease just need to "fight harder."

But Taboo is an unapologetic anti-cancer warrior.

He is intensely defiant when he talks about the disease.

"I'm living, dude. I'm alive. See this face? I can actually smile and say, Look, I beat the f--- out of cancer," he said, mouthing the end of the expletive.

He spoke to AFP decked out in black, his bald head crowned by a wide-brimmed "zoot suit" hat evocative of his Mexican roots, and sporting turquoise-and-silver jewelry in a nod to his Native American heritage on his mother's side.

He cited his maternal grandmother as his biggest influence.

"She's a Shoshone Native American woman who had a warrior instinct. And my warrior instinct kicked in" after he was diagnosed, he said.

But you need both love and fight to deal with cancer, he added.
At the American Cancer Society, he wants to be an "ambassador of love," he said, breaking into the chorus of one of his biggest hits: "Where Is the Love?"
Last year, as a fundraiser for the Cancer Society, he recorded a song called "The Fight."
His message today to others is that they can defeat cancer, too.

"I beat it down. And now I'm going to use this gift of life to give people hope and to say, Look, I went down that path too, I was there lying on that bed, you're not alone. I am one of you and you are one of me. Let's get charged up for life."]]>
11/15/2017 10:08:34 AM
<![CDATA[World Diabetes Day]]>
The day was created to serve as a platform to highlight the importance of accessible and affordable diabetes medication, technology, self-care, and education about the disease for all. It is a serious underestimated health threat to women and children.

WDD17_infographics_EN_FINAL_1-page-001
Photo via the International Diabetes Federation (IDF)



The campaign aims to bring awareness to the women living in developing countries in order to break down the barriers for treatment created by the cost of early prevention, detection, expensive medication, and care. According to World Diabetes website, “Socioeconomic inequalities expose women to the main risk factors of diabetes, including poor diet and nutrition, physical inactivity, tobacco consumption and harmful use of alcohol.”



WDD17_infographics_EN_FINAL_2-page-001
Photo via the International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

Mohamed Shaaban is an Egyptian young leader member of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) in the Middle East and North Africa. He was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2002. Shaaban is an example for what the IDF aims to do.

According to their website, “the IDF Young Leaders in Diabetes (YLD) Programme was established to empower young people living with diabetes to become advocates for themselves and others living with diabetes worldwide. All the YLD Candidates are committed to raising awareness of diabetes by being a powerful voice for prevention, education, access to quality care improved quality of life, and the end of discrimination worldwide.”

“The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) was incorporated in 1950 under the Belgian law for international not for profit organisations of 27th June 1921 (AISBL). Its Articles of Association, last amended on 10th March 2015, provide the legally binding purpose of IDF, which is encapsulated in our Vision and developed in our Mission and Strategy,” their mission and strategy page read.

The Ministry of Health and Population, represented by the National Institute of Diabetes and Endocrinology, launched an awareness campaign for diabetic patients and their families on Tuesday.

Dean of the Diabetes Institute Hesham Al-Hafnawi said that the campaign includes seminars and educational trips for diabetic patients as well as a launch of free medical convoys.

Hafnawi added that an educational day was held for the patients and their relatives this morning at the institute's lecture hall. Free blood tests were also conducted for the patients and nutritious meals were distributed among them, pointing out that another seminar will be held to raise awareness regarding the disease on Wednesday, November 22 at Cairo University’s Faculty of Nursing.

Inas Shaltout, professor of diabetes at Kasr Al-Ain University and head of the Arab Diabetes Association, said that the number of diabetic people in Egypt, according to the statistics of 2015, is about 8 million Egyptians.


She noted that the expected numbers in Egypt, according to the International Federation of Diabetes, will reach 15 million people by 2040, because it will double if the state does not exert efforts, in cooperation with concerned parties, to manage the spread of diabetes.


Women who have already had gestational diabetes, ovarian calcification, pancreatitis, pancreatic surgery, who take certain drugs such as "cortisone," or are classified as obese are more susceptible to diabetes, and they have to test for diabetes each year after the age of forty, and every three years before the age of forty.

WDD17_infographics_EN_FINAL_3-page-001
Photo via the International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

Some of the early detectable symptoms of diabetes are: frequent urination, sudden weight loss, low levels of energy, excessive thirst, and even blurred vision.


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11/14/2017 11:40:19 PM
<![CDATA[Stop sabotaging your future with your negative self-talk]]>
Self-talk creates reality. Negative self-talk can lower your self-confidence, self-esteem and happiness, keeping you from accomplishing your goals.

Studies show that it is pretty easy to go from positive thinking to negative thinking, but it is far harder to shift from negative to positive. The good news is that, like any other muscle, our mind could as well be trained. It will take some effort, but it is absolutely worth it because it is a life-changing skill.

So how do we train it?

1. Watch what you focus on:

There is a great metaphor that describes the mind as a computer that has tons of files and a search window. Our focus is the search button, so if we are focusing on the negatives in ourselves/ others, it automatically keeps searching all the files for more negatives. And if we focus on positive thoughts, it comes up with even more positive thoughts. “What you focus on grows.”

Watch what you focus on - Photo Via Pixabay by CC0 Creative Commons-Free-Photos
Watch what you focus on - Photo Via Pixabay by CC0 Creative Commons-Free-Photos

2. Self-awareness:

Noticing what type of conversations you have with yourself is important. Are these conversations positive and affirming or the opposite? Learn to catch yourself when they are negative and immediately replace them with positive ones, reminding yourself of your past achievements, success, and of the good comments that you have previously received.

3. Choose your words carefully:

The most powerful two words are “I Am” so be very cautious how you use them. People say things like “I am so stupid” or “I am completely blowing this.” Instead, stop and use words like “I am tired and cannot concentrate” or “this is not my best performance. I will do better when I am rested.” The words you choose are planted in the fertile soil of your imagination and take root. Listening to positive affirmation on daily basis can help you change your vocabulary about yourself and boost your self-confidence.

4. Gratitude:

Research at UC Davis shows that just by writing for a few minutes each day about things that you are grateful for can dramatically boost your happiness, well-being, and even your health. We tend to think that misery loves company and that venting will help get rid of our negative emotions, so we continuously talk about all the bad stuff and we forget to talk about the good stuff.

Gratitude_-_Photo_Via_Pixabay_by_Johnhain
Gratitude - Photo Via Pixabay by Johnhain

5. Here and now:

The past is over and you cannot go back in time except in your own mind. Replaying yesterday takes away today’s precious moments. Do not let the past control your present and future. Release all thoughts about what you should have/ not done/ said. The past is over and has no power over you. Today’s thoughts create your future; you are in charge.

6. Release your fear:

We all passed through some harmful experiences that we do not want to repeat again. Past experiences are here to teach us a lesson and help us grow; not to haunt us for the rest of our lives. Release all fears from past negative experiences. Tell yourself that you have learned your lesson, and if the same situation happens, you will react in a wiser way. Set your mind that you will not be harmed twice by the same situation because you are in control.

Release_your_fear_-_Photo_Via_Pexels_by_Pixabay
Release your fear - Photo Via Pexels - Pixabay
7. Meditation & mindfulness:

In order to be able to do the above steps, you will need to have some quiet time in your daily routine to connect with yourself and reflect on your thoughts and feelings. Meditation is to listen to your intuition trusting that life is happening FOR you and not TO you.

It is not what we say out loud that really determines our lives. It is what we whisper to ourselves that has the most power. So do not be a victim of negative self-talk.

About Marlin:

With long-term, multicultural life experiences in world-class communities across the globe, Marlin Soliman takes our day-to-day communication to a whole new level. She helps her clients become dynamic, confident speakers who can inspire action by delivering a message that matters in an adequate manner.

Her experience in PR includes working as a celebrity manager in the prestigious agency MAD Solutions, renowned for handling celebrities’ affairs. Marlin handled many celebrities, including Hend Sabry, Nahed El Sebai, Yasmin Raeis, scenarist and producer Mohamed Hefzy, director Marwan Hamed, director Hadi El Bagoury and music composer Tamer Karawan.

Her educational background afforded her the opportunity of being well exposed to various aspects of communication. Soliman earned her bachelor’s in French language and literature and mass communication at Anderson University in the U.S. She also studied French Literature at La Sorbone University in France, received an executive management diploma from the American University in Cairo and a certificate in training TOT from the International Communication Training Institute in the U.K.

Marlin M Soliman Facebook page: Act Right by Marlin Soliman

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11/14/2017 1:02:10 PM
<![CDATA[Arab La Mode Festival adds glamour to Grand Nile Tower Hotel]]>
The designers that participated in the event proved that they too can keep up with international fashion standards.

Celebrities such as Dolly Shahin attended the event alongside some of the most talented fashion pioneers in the Arab world.

From the designers and makeup teams, to the hair and the models, all showed the latest hairstyles and makeup trends, as well as the latest jewelry and fashion designs, providing a perfect platform for Arab designers to keep pace with the latest international fashion trends.

Some of the designers included Sumaya Harb from Saudi Arabia, Raja Hilal from Egypt and Saida Hamdi from Morocco.

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Photo courtesy of Grand Nile Tower Hotel

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Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

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Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

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Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

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Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

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Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah
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11/14/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Psoriasis tied to higher risk of serious liver disease]]>
These inflammatory disorders are often treated with methotrexate, a medication linked to an increased risk of liver disease. For the current study, researchers followed more than 1 million people for an average of six years to see how having conditions like psoriasis or rheumatoid arthritis - and taking methotrexate - influenced the odds of developing serious liver disorders.

Compared to people without chronic inflammatory diseases, people with psoriasis were 37% more likely to develop liver disorders. When psoriasis patients took methotrexate, they had roughly twice the odds of liver damage.

With psoriatic arthritis, the increased risk of liver disease was 38% without drug therapy and 67% with methotrexate. For rheumatoid arthritis, there was no increased risk of liver disease when people took methotrexate, but when they didn’t they had 49% higher odds of liver damage.

“This study is the first, to our knowledge, to empirically support the long held belief that psoriasis patients are more prone to serious liver problems compared to patients without psoriasis and those with diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis which are treated with similar medications,” said senior study author Dr. Joel Gelfand of the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia.

“Medications which are toxic to the liver, such as methotrexate, should be used cautiously in patients with psoriatic disease, especially those with additional risk factors such as obesity or regular alcohol use,” Gelfand said by email.

The study suggests systemic inflammation - which is present in all three diseases - may play a significant role in development of liver disease, particularly in those with psoriasis, researchers note online November 2 in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology.

For the study, researchers examined data on almost 1.3 million people without chronic inflammatory disorders as well as roughly 198,000 psoriasis patients, 12,000 people with psoriatic arthritis and 54,000 with rheumatoid arthritis.

Among people with inflammatory disorders who took systemic therapy - medications that reach the whole body - methotrexate was the most commonly prescribed option.

Overall, 6% of psoriasis patients were prescribed systemic therapy, as were 53% of people with psoriatic arthritis and 61% of people with rheumatoid arthritis.

Independent of risk factors commonly seen in liver disease, such as alcohol use and diabetes, the study found that patients with psoriatic skin or joint disease, particularly patients with more severe skin psoriasis, had an elevated risk for serious liver disease.

Pfizer, which sells a version of methotrexate, has hired Gelfand and another study author as consultants and given them research grants, although the drugmaker wasn’t involved in the design or analysis of the current study. The authors have other financial ties to several other drug companies.

One limitation of the study is that researchers didn’t look at deaths from liver disease. Another drawback is that they lacked data on whether people at risk for liver disease might have been steered away from methotrexate to other therapies.

Even so, the findings add to evidence that patients need to consider the liver risks associated with these disorders, said Dr. Lawrence Eichenfield, a researcher at the University of California, San Diego, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“Patients should be aware that psoriasis has health impacts beyond the skin alone, and its management should be considered as an important part of the health of an individual,” Eichenfield said by email. “Liver function tests should be tested in psoriasis patients and the results may influence choices for therapy.”

An alternative treatment for joint pain, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), also carry a risk of liver disease, cautioned Dr. Alexander Egeberg, a researcher at the University of Copenhagen who wasn’t involved in the study.

“Consequently, physicians should carefully weigh the risks and benefits of NSAIDs as well as methotrexate when treating patients with inflammatory diseases,” Egeberg said by email.]]>
11/14/2017 11:37:12 AM
<![CDATA[Google broadens takedown of extremist YouTube videos]]>
The new policy affects videos that feature people and groups that have been designated as terrorist by the U.S. or British governments but lack the gory violence or hateful speech that were already barred by YouTube.

A YouTube spokesperson, who asked not be named for security reasons, confirmed the policy in response to questions. The company would not specify when the policy went into effect.

As YouTube terms already barred “terrorists” from using the service, the new policy keeps out videos uploaded by others that militants likely would try to distribute if they could have accounts, according to the spokesperson.

Hundreds of videos of slain al Qaeda recruiter Anwar al-Awlaki lecturing on the history of Islam, recorded long before he advocated violence against the United States, were among those removed under the new policy, the spokesperson said.

Governments and human rights groups have pressed YouTube for years to crack down on extremist videos. They argue that the propaganda radicalized viewers and contributed to deadly terror attacks.

British Home Secretary Amber Rudd amplified the pressure during visits with tech companies in Silicon Valley in July and a speech in Washington, D.C. last week. European Union and U.S. lawmakers this year have threatened consequences for tech companies if concerns are not addressed.

Legislation could resemble a German law approved in June to fine social media companies 50 million euros ($57 million) if hateful postings are not promptly removed.

YouTube said discussions with outside experts prompted the new policy, but it was unclear why the company decided to act only recently. In June, the company announced that “inflammatory religious or supremacist content” that did not violate its policies would be allowed with warning labels and a restriction making them ineligible for ad revenue.

At the time, Google General Counsel Kent Walker said in a blog post, “We think this strikes the right balance between free expression and access to information without promoting extremely offensive viewpoints.”

The latest step goes farther and was praised by critics such as Paul Barrett, deputy director of the New York University Stern Center for Business and Human Rights.

“If the terrorist is in the business of recruiting and inciting people to make violent attacks, you’ve got to the draw the line” against any of their content, Barrett said.

The new policy does not affect news clips or educational videos about terrorism. But YouTube will not always have an easy time distinguishing, experts said, pointing to tactics such as overlaying extremist commentary on news footage to get around censors.

YouTube has resisted imposing more editorial control because it fears making it harder for important videos to get a wide audience, Juniper Downs, YouTube’s global director of public policy, told a San Francisco conference sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League on Monday.

“We will lose something very valuable if we completely transform the way these platforms work,” she said during a panel discussion.

Internet freedom advocates such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation have urged tech companies to be cautious and transparent in responding to government pressure.

YouTube is relying on government lists of terrorists and terrorist groups for enforcement. Content moderators check the listings and make removal decisions after fielding reports from an automated system, users or partner organizations such as the Anti-Defamation League and The Institute for Strategic Dialogue.

Al-Awlaki, whom the U.S. killed in a 2011 drone strike, was designated a terrorist by the U.S. Treasury the year prior.]]>
11/14/2017 11:33:09 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Stefano Gabbana]]>
One-half of the creative founders of Dolce & Gabbana, Stefano Gabbana started to grace the world with his beautiful wearable works of art in 1980 when he first met Domenico Dolce. The pair then launched Dolce & Gabbana (D&G). In 1985, their debut was at Milano Collezioni’s Nuovi Talenti.

Always looking for the best way to capture the essence of women, their first show was titled “Real Women”, and their first store opened its doors in 1987. D&G was quick to become fashion enthusiasts’ favorites, as the two founders would soon travel the globe and showcase their work at fashion shows around the world, such as that of Tokyo in 1989 and that of New York in 1990.

That same year saw the arrival of their first menswear collection, with the opening of the first D&G showroom in New York. They also won the first International Woolmark Prize. In 1992, the brand released its first fragrance, which ended up winning the Best Fragrance of the Year Award in 1993.



They became the celebrity go-to brand when Madonna commissioned them to create her costumes for the “Girlie Show” world tour. By 2003, they were bestsellers, beating fashion houses like Armani, Gucci, Prada and even Versace.

In 25 years, D&G opened 113 stores and 21 factories and employed more than 3,500 people; earning €1 billion per year.Gabbana is the 27th richest man in Italy, according to Forbes magazine. He has a net worth of $1.51 billion. Today, D&G is one of the world’s most influential fashion brands in the world; it has shaped today’s culture by being the first to introduce the use of animal print.

Another quote for the road:

“You have to work very hard behind the scenes, to make a message clear enough for a lot of people to understand.”- Stefano Gabbana



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11/14/2017 10:47:24 AM
<![CDATA[et Beauty: Rihanna’s ‘Stunna Lip Paint’]]>
Go bold or go home! Rihanna doesn’t play around when it comes to her makeup, especially when you’re talking about red lipstick. The Stunna Lip Paint looks to have a bold finish with a satin feel.

She first teased us about her beauty line on May 31, and here we are in November expecting the release of her red Stunna Lip Paint, which she teased in a mini homemade tutorial on her Instagram, which almost broke the internet.

#stunna💋 don't laugh at my tutorial skillz 🤷🏽‍♀️ @fentybeauty

A post shared by badgalriri (@badgalriri) on



“The Galaxy Collection”, released last month, featured a shimmer eyeshadow palette called “Galaxy”, glitter release eyeliners called “Eclipse”, shimmer lipsticks called “Starlit” and lip gloss called “Cosmic Gloss”, featuring a variety of shades.



In September, the “Fenty” beauty line was released. It consists of her most popular item: 40 different shades of foundation. The foundations are accompanied by concealers, contour and highlighter sticks. The collection also features a variety of highlighters debuting her very own “Trophy Wife”. Fenty Beauty also released blotting powder and paper, as well as makeup brushes.

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11/14/2017 10:10:00 AM
<![CDATA[Italy's white truffles feel the heat at Alba auction]]>
The winning bidder for the biggest truffle at this year’s Alba White Truffle auction in Italy, from Hong Kong, paid 75,000 euros for a well-rounded truffle weighing 850 grams.

Master truffle hunter Piercarlo Vacchina has trained his two dogs Rocky and Jimmy to hunt for the delicacy but says the last few years of drought have taken their toll. He insists he’s not in it for the money any more.

“More than the money, I’d say it’s the passion - because unfortunately in the last few years, it’s been really hard to pay even the dogs’ expenses, the vet bills and everything,” he says.

Alba, a small town in the northwestern region of Piemonte, is known as Italy’s white truffle capital.

Every year at this time it hosts the famous International Alba White Truffle Fair which attracts around 100,000 visitors from all over the world who come to buy, sell and smell the tasty tuber.

A highlight of the fair is the truffle auction, now in its eighteenth year, with proceeds going to charitable causes. This Sunday it took place in Grinzane Cavour Castle with live satellite links to Hong Kong and Dubai.

But climate change, drought and severe storms, and a trend to grow more vines for wine, have undermined production and sent prices soaring.

“It’s not an exceptional year. It’s a poor year, with very high prices and very few truffles,” says truffle hunter and seller Gianluca Sacchetto.

Over the past 25 years, there has been a 30 percent decrease in truffle production - and, in some places, they are disappearing altogether.

Almost two-thirds of Italy’s farmland has been hit by a prolonged drought this year, costing Italian agriculture some 2 billion euros, according to farmers association Coldiretti.

Limited supply of white truffles inevitably drives the prices up and this year they have reached an all time high with an average price of 6,000 euros per kilo.

Truffle hunter Marilena Tarable says with this week’s much needed rain the truffles have started growing a little bigger and a bit rounder because the earth has softened.

“But up until now, with the very hard earth, it’s really hard to extract them,” she says.]]>
11/13/2017 3:32:49 PM
<![CDATA[Cairo Flea Market back with true Christmas shopping experience]]>
Whether you are looking for winter gear, seeking to decorate your home for the holidays or hiking for a one of a kind vintage gift and the best Christmas delicalities, CFM’s “Winter at the Park” will be open from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Fish Garden in Zamalek on the last Friday of the month.

Hosted by Wasabi Experience, each CFM event is a great place for everyone, wanting to sell and buy everything, from household items, home appliances, furniture, textile, ceramics, electrical equipment, toys, games, books, DVD's, clothes, antiques, accessories etc..

Take a glimpse at CFM’s most recent festival, held at the outset of the season:



You can book a table at the event by accessing the official website, at cairofleamarket.com/booking
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11/13/2017 3:05:42 PM
<![CDATA[The EMA’s best and worst dressed list]]>
It just seemed that there were some that didn’t put in the effort while others were able to perfect the causal red carpet carefree look. Here are our picks for the best and worst dressed:

The best dressed

Rita Ora

Best_Dressed_Rita_Ora._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Rita Ora. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Rita Pereira

Best_Dressed_Rita_Pereira._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Rita Pereira. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Shawn Mendes suit by The Kooples

Best_Dressed_Shawn_Mendes_suit_by_The_Kooples._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Shawn Mendes suit by The Kooples. REUTERS-Hannah McKay


Sofia Reyes

Best_Dressed_Sofia_Reyes._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Sofia Reyes. REUTERS-Hannah McKay


Pixie Lott in Dolce & Gabbana pantsuit

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British singer Pixie Lott arrives at the 2017 MTV Europe Music Awards at Wembley Arena in London, Britain, November 12, 2017. REUTERS/Hannah McKay

Natalie Dormer

Best_Dressed_Natalie_Dormer._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Natalie Dormer. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Madison Beer in Christian Dior

Best_Dressed_Madison_Beer_in_Christian_Dior._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Madison Beer in Christian Dior. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Lana del Rey in Gucci

Best_Dressed_Lana_del_Rey_in_Gucci._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Lana del Rey in Gucci. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Jedward

Best_Dressed_Jedward._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Jedward. REUTERS-Hannah McKay


Ella Eyre

Best_Dressed_Ella_Eyre._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Ella Eyre. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Demi Lovato

Best_Dressed_Demi_Lovato._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Demi Lovato. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Becca Dudley

Best_Dressed_Becca_Dudley._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Becca Dudley. REUTERS-Hannah McKay


Zara Larsson

Best_Dressed_Zara_Larsson._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Best Dressed_Zara Larsson. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

The worst dressed

30 Seconds to Mars in Gucci

Worst_dressed_30_seconds_to_Mars_in_Gucci._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Worst dressed_30 seconds to Mars in Gucci. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Camila Cabello in Ralph & Russo

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Singer Camila Cabello poses with her award during the 2017 MTV Europe Music Awards at Wembley Arena in London, Britain November 12, 2017. REUTERS//Hannah McKay

Julia Michaels

Worst_dressed_Julia_Michaels._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Worst dressed_Julia Michaels. REUTERS-Hannah McKay

Stefflon Don

Worst_dressed_Stefflon_Don._REUTERS-Hannah_McKay
Worst dressed_Stefflon Don. REUTERS-Hannah McKay
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11/13/2017 2:04:24 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Agatha Christie]]>
Born in Torquay, Devon, England, the United Kingdom on September 15, 1890, Agatha Christie earned herself the title “the bestselling author of all time” after writing 80 novels, story collections, 14 plays and a number of other books, which resulted into around 4 billion sold copies and were translated into 45 languages from all over the world.
Through this quote Christie is arguing that seeing people in their most uncalculated, unorganized moment makes us realize how we truly feel about them.

An adaptation to the big screen of her novel A Murder on the Orient Express is currently playing in theatres all over the world. The huge production is directed by and starring the classically talented Kenneth Branagh alongside a cast of A-list stars such as Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Penélope Cruz and Willem Dafoe.

Fun facts:
● Christie wrote romance novels and published them under the name Mary Westmacott.

● She worked as a nurse during WWI and then took on a job at a pharmacy, which had an impact on her writing as many of the murders in her books are committed with poison.

Another quote for the road:
“Good advice is always certain to be ignored, but that's no reason not to give it.”


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11/13/2017 12:30:00 PM
<![CDATA[Care to name a planet for NASA? ]]>
New Horizons, NASA’s spacecraft which surveyed Pluto 2 years ago, is set to “flyby” the planet in January 2019. By doing so, the spacecraft will set the record for “visiting the most remote world ever explored by humankind,” according to NASA’s Frontier worlds website. However, the current name given by scientists to the planet is "(486958) 2014 MU69," which is to say the least “unexciting.”

That is why NASA is offering everyone

a chance to come up with a nickname for the planet

and submit it to the website, or to vote for one of the names NASA is already considering. The contest to choose the name will end by the December 1. Notably the voted name will be temporary until a formal name is given to the planet by NASA after the flyby, according to Time’s website.

Some of the names which NASA is considering and has put up for vote are: “Año Nuevo” which means new year in Spanish, “Tangotango Tawhaki” which are the names of the Maori creation goddess and her husband, and “Pharos” which was the lighthouse of ancient Alexandria and its library.

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NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI/Alex Parker - Wikimedia commons
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11/13/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Best Shawarma in Cairo]]>
You can have it as beef or chicken, in large or super-size, or you can even eat it as Fatteh and it would still be more delicious than you can fathom. That is why some argue that Shawarma is the definition of love and while the debate has not been settled yet, we urge you to try these Shawarma joints to help you make up your mind.

Semsema



AbouMazen



Abo Anas Alsoury



Shawarmaister



Abou Haidar



Shawerma el Reem

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11/13/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[You should not be eating alone: Study ]]>
According to the study published

on Obesity Research & Clinical Practice,

eating patterns have been altered in association with modern day families’ disintegration. As nowadays people are more likely to live in smaller families and have unorganized and more individual eating routines. This also resulted into many adults resorting to eating alone more often.

The study, conducted using survey data collected from 7,725 South Korean adults, showed that men who often ate alone had a 45 percent higher chance of being obese and a 64 percent increase in the risk of suffering from metabolic syndrome, that is beside other risks such as: prediabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.

Even after considering the effects of smoking and drinking it was found that an unmarried man who dined alone was still at a three times higher risk of metabolic syndrome than a man who usually dined with someone, according to Time’s website. As for the results for women they were unclear and needed further research.

Metabolic syndrome or MetS can be defined as a “clustering of at least three of five of the following medical conditions: abdominal (central) obesity, elevated fasting plasma glucose, elevated blood pressure, high serum triglycerides, and low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels,” according to V. Kuete on

Medicinal Spices and Vegetables from Africa.



Apparently people who dined alone more did not have as much healthy food or fruits and vegetables as they should and they did not have regular times for eating. However, these study results should not be taken as a clear connection between eating alone and suffering from metabolic syndrome as there are many cultural and scientific variables that should be taken into consideration. The study does show, however, that an unhealthy lifestyle is usually a factor in suffering from MetS, according to Time’s website.
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11/13/2017 10:22:28 AM
<![CDATA[Mazen Zaki wins Manhunt Egypt 2017]]>
ManHunt_Egypt_(2)
ManHunt Egypt-Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

Baraa Zakaa came in the second place and Ammar Bin Yasser came in the third place. The jury comprised of Miss Egypt 2009 Elham Wagdi, the prominent photographer of stars Ahmed Mubarez and artist Nadeen Saba.

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ManHunt Egypt-Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

A raft of public figures and super stars attended the competition. Manhunt Egypt Pageant is the biggest competition to crown the best model in Egypt by Fashion/Pageant Republic.

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ManHunt Egypt-Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

Karim el Bialy is the founder of Fashion Republic, a company specializing in purchasing competition licenses; it a part of Pageants Republic. This is the first competition for the company and it will not be the last. Bialy said Manhunt is an international company in fashion and beauty, and there will be more surprises in the next phase.

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ManHunt Egypt-Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah

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ManHunt Egypt-Photo by Egypt Today/Mahmoud Hassaballah
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11/13/2017 9:16:13 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Grace Kelly]]>Grace Kelly lived the true Cinderella fairy tale as she went from being a Hollywood starlet to being the Princess of Monaco after marrying Prince Rainer III on April 1956.

She started her acting career at the age of 20 on the stage in New York City and appeared in more than 40 episodes of live television dramas during the Golden Age of Television. Later, she won an Academy Award for her role in “The Country Girl” (1954). She also stared in the film “High Society” alongside Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby in 1956. She was one of Alfred Hitchcock’s favorite blond actresses, and she stared in three of his films; “Rear Window” (1954), “Dial M for Murder” (1954), and “To Catch a Thief” (1955).

She gave up her acting career at the age of 26 to become the Princess of Monaco, the wedding was broadcast on television and watched by an estimate of 30 million people.

Fun fact:

● Kelly’s family paid a dowry of $2 million to the Royal House of Monaco so that she can marry the Prince.

Another quote for the road:

“Getting angry doesn't solve anything.”
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11/12/2017 7:08:33 PM
<![CDATA[Saudi Arabia heads 1st Arab women delegation in Maritime Association]]>
Saudi Arabia is exerting efforts to achieve gender equality at the workplace and the empowerment of women. The event took place at the headquarters of the Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport in Alexandria, Egypt, from October 15 to 19, 2017.

Arab_Women_Maritime_Conference_(1)
Photos courtesy of Bahri

The Saudi Vision 2030 objective aims to boost the national economy and lead the country to have a prominent presence within the field of sustainable development; while also increasing the percentage of women’s participation in the workforce from 22 percent to 30 percent.

The conference launched the “Arab Women in Maritime Association” (AWiMA), a platform to bring together the women working in different sectors of the industry in the region with a vision that aims at achieving “an effective Arab woman who promotes a strong maritime sector.” The head of the Saudi delegation, Suhaibani, won the presidency of the newly formed association.

Arab_Women_Maritime_Conference_(3)
Photos courtesy of Bahri

“It was an honor to be invited by IMO to represent the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia at this prestigious conference. Our nation’s participation in these important events truly reflects the social transformation the country is going through and more so as we are representing the maritime industry, which has historically been male-dominated,” said Suhaibani.

About the “Arab Women in Maritime Association” (AWiMA)

AWiMA’s mission is to encourage and empower the Arab woman through improving her professional skills and highlighting her effective role in the maritime sector. Its objectives include enhancing national and regional recognition of the role of Arab women as resources for the maritime industry, strengthening cooperation networks among Arab women in the port and maritime sectors on the local, regional and international levels, building national and regional capacity through equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for the Arab woman, increasing employment opportunities for Arab women at the high management levels of the related sectors in maritime transport, developing partnerships and collaboration with national maritime administrations, regional entities, UN agencies and the private sector and strengthening the mechanisms for implementation of global partnerships of sustainable development particularly the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.]]>
11/12/2017 5:32:07 PM
<![CDATA[Obesity tied to serious complications after knee injuries]]>
Knee dislocations happen when the patella, or kneecap, slips out of its normal position, often as a result of trauma, intense exercise or physically challenging work. But for obese people, knee dislocations are often due not to trauma or excessive force but to strain from carrying excess body weight.

For the current study, researchers examined data on more than 19,000 knee dislocations from 2000 to 2012, including almost 2,300 injuries sustained by overweight and obese people.

The proportion of patients hospitalized with knee dislocations who were also obese rose from 8 percent at the start of the study period to 19 percent by the end, the study found.

Obese people were also about twice as likely as normal-weight patients to have vascular injury, or blood vessel damage, the study also found.

“The effects of obesity go far beyond the effects on general health that are well known,” said lead study author Dr. Joey Johnson of the Warren Alpert Medical School at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.

Because the study also found the risk of vascular injury rose with increasing degrees of obesity, patients may benefit from losing weight even when they can’t shed enough pounds to stop being obese, Johnson said by email.

Overall, just 1,075 patients, or about 6 percent, had vascular injuries during the study, researchers report in the Journal of Orthopaedic Trauma.

Compared to non-obese patients, people with severe obesity were more than twice as likely to have vascular injury. Patients with less extreme obesity were still 77 percent more likely to have vascular injury than non-obese individuals.

Obese patients also typically had longer and more costly hospital stays than non-obese people.

With a vascular injury, patients were hospitalized for around 15 days, compared to only about 7 days without vascular injury.

Average hospitalization costs were $131,478 for vascular injury cases compared to $60,241 for patients without vascular damage, the study also found.

About 2 percent of obese patients had amputations. This wasn’t meaningfully different from non-obese people after researchers accounted for whether patients had vascular injury.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how obesity directly causes knee dislocations or vascular injuries.

Another limitation is the reliance on billing codes to identify obese patients, which might under-represent the overall rate of obesity in the study, the authors note. Researchers also lacked data on long-term patient outcomes.

Even so, the findings add to evidence that knee dislocations and vascular damage can be worse for obese individuals, said Dr. Alexandra Gersing, a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco, who wasn’t involved in the study.

While weight loss is a good way to help avoid these issues, even without losing weight there are things people can do, Gersing said by email.

“In obese individuals that are not able to lose weight, knee stability can be increased by increasing the strength of muscles surrounding the knee joint,” Gersing advised. “Knee stability can thereby be improved up to a certain extent in order to prevent knee dislocations and consequently the associated vascular injury.”]]>
11/12/2017 12:47:33 PM
<![CDATA[Video games could be next for Snapchat, China's Tencent says]]>
Snap disclosed in a U.S. regulatory filing on Wednesday that Tencent recently bought 145.8 million of its shares on the open market, fueling investor speculation about how the two companies might work together.

The U.S. social media company has struggled since its March initial public offering to meet analyst expectations for user growth, and it is locked in fierce competition for users and ad dollars with Facebook Inc.

In describing its stake, Tencent, the world’s largest gaming company by revenue, implied a close relationship with Snap that could go beyond passive investing and involve assisting the U.S. company with strategy.

Investors treated Tencent’s new stake as an investment rather than a step toward an acquisition, while analysts viewed the move as potentially more beneficial for the Chinese company than for Snap.

Shares in Snap fell 4.3 percent on Thursday to $12.35, adding to a 14.6 percent loss in the previous session. Snap went public at $17 a share.

Morgan Stanley analysts late on Wednesday cut their rating on the stock to “underweight” because of competition from Facebook’s Instagram, which has introduced features that mimic Snapchat’s disappearing messages. A separate Morgan Stanley division was lead underwriter for Snap’s IPO.

Tencent’s shares do not have voting power and the company will not have a board seat. Snap said in its filing on Wednesday that Tencent notified it of the share purchases this month.

“The investment enables Tencent to explore cooperation opportunities with the company on mobile games publishing and newsfeed as well as to share its financial returns from the growth of its businesses and monetization in the future,” Tencent said in an emailed statement. It also referred to the potential for newsfeed ads.

It was not immediately clear if Snap has the same plan.

The California-based company declined to comment beyond its filing, in which it said it was inspired by Tencent’s creativity and entrepreneurial spirit and grateful to continue a productive relationship.

Snapchat does not have a Facebook-style newsfeed, but said on Tuesday that it was planning a redesign that could include such a feature.

Last year, PepsiCo Inc’s Gatorade ran a interactive video game ad on Snapchat featuring tennis star Serena Williams. Beyond that and a few similar examples, the app has not offered mobile games.

Analysts said Tencent has benefited from its social media apps for the phenomenal popularity of its smartphone games such as Honour of Kings, and will need the help of local networks to fuel overseas growth.

Honour of Kings, based on Chinese historical characters, is the top-grossing mobile game in the world. It become so popular that Tencent in July curbed play time amid reports of addiction among children.

Tencent also owns Riot Games, developer of League of Legends, which is the most popular computer game in the United States and Europe according to research firm Newzoo.

Like other U.S. social networks, Snapchat is banned in China, although videos originating there are visible on the network presumably because of technological workarounds.

It is unlikely Snap “would ever be allowed to establish a foothold in China even if their relationship with Tencent were deeper,” Brian Wieser, senior analyst at Pivotal Research Group in New York said in a client note.

The companies operate on different scales. Tencent’s holdings include messaging apps QQ and WeChat, both ubiquitous in China, and its market capitalization of $469 billion is among the largest in the world. Snap’s is $15 billion.

“The China market is in some ways more advanced in social media and messaging than the U.S. is,” said Rebecca Fannin, founder of Silicon Dragon, a website about China and California’s Silicon Valley.

“Tencent might have teams come in and work with them,” Fannin said.

Tencent has global aspirations and may be buying shares with that strategy in mind, said Lindsay Conner, a Los Angeles lawyer who has represented Chinese companies in the United States.

“They often invest in companies to have a seat at the table, to understand businesses better, to see where the leading edge is between technology and content, and to have an insight into technology they should adopt or license,” he said.

Tencent first became an investor in Snap in 2013. The total size of its investment has not been disclosed.]]>
11/12/2017 12:37:35 PM
<![CDATA[Snake man's venom habit holds hope for new antidote]]>
It may now help save thousands of lives, as researchers search for a new antidote based on his body's response to the toxic fluids.

"It sounds very crazy what I am doing but it turns out that it potentially has lots of health benefits," Ludwin, the tattooed 51-year-old told AFP in the living room of his home in the British capital.

Ludwin demonstrated his decades-old habit by firmly holding the head of a green Pope's tree viper -- Trimeresurus popeiorum -- and extracting a few drops of its venom.

Minutes later, he has injected the fluid into his arm using a syringe.

Over the years Ludwin has injected the venom of some of the world's most dangerous snakes, including the black mamba and cobras.

He claimed it has strengthened his immune system so much he has not suffered from a cold in 15 years.

But it has not been all positive.

"I have had quite a few accidents", Ludwin said, recalling he once ended up in a London hospital's intensive care unit for three days following an overdose.

"It's a very very dangerous thing to do, I don't encourage people to do it".

"The sensation of injecting snake venom is not pleasant at all...it's not like a Jim Morrison trip. You don't trip -- it's extreme pain", said Ludwin, who wears a snake pendant.

Ludwin's unique behaviour is the subject of a short film at a new exhibition on venom opening at London's Natural History Museum on Friday.

His habit has taken on new meaning in recent years after a team of researchers at the University of Copenhagen embarked on producing an anti-venom using his antibodies.

"When he injects venom, his immune system responds," Brian Lohse, a professor at the faculty of health and medical sciences at the University of Copenhagen, said in a phone interview.

"What we expect is to find copies of his antibodies, isolate them, test them, and eventually set up a production of them."

Four full-time researchers, who began work in 2013, expect to complete the project within a year.

- Cheaper antidotes -

If successful, it would be the first human-derived anti-venom made from a donor who has injected himself with different snake venoms.

Antidotes to date have been harnessed by collecting antibodies from animals, usually horses, that have been given venom.

"Today's animal-derived antibodies are quite expensive in hospital settings," said Lohse, noting the average price for a treatment is typically £1,500-£2,300 ($2,000-$3,000, €1700-€2600), but can top £11,700 in extreme cases.

"Our anti-venoms are aimed to cost a hundred dollars and we hope to make it freely available in countries where people are bitten every day and people die every day," he added.

Lohse said he hopes to distribute the new anti-venom free of charge with the support of governments or non-profit organisations.

According to the World Health Organisation, snake bites are a "neglected" public health issue.

It estimates around 5.4 million people worldwide are bitten by snakes every year, and between 81,000 and 138,000 die.

Although Lohse values the indispensable part Ludwin has played in the venture, he has reservations about his habit.

"Science, and perhaps future snake bite victims, can express their gratitude towards Steve's endeavours, but on the other side it's very dangerous to do self-immunisation," he said.

"Steve has been in serious danger several times, therefore I would strongly discourage anybody to do what Steve has done."]]>
11/12/2017 12:35:43 PM
<![CDATA[Children behavior management workshop at The Wellness Hub]]>how to manage children’s behavior problems.

Anxiety and stress are some of the side effects that all parents face while they are raising young children. While the child may show aggression and anxiety, this may be because he or she does not possess the vocabulary to be able to express themselves appropriately.

Worrying is a normal reaction for parents in situations similar to this, as it is the parents’ role to remove the tension from their lives and the child’s. This workshop will assist in providing the right techniques that you can practice with your child in order to remove the anxiety and stress from your lives and regain control.

The goal of this workshop:

1. To discuss what are the right steps that you can take to manage the level of your child’s anxiety.

2. How to approach your child about anxiety in a respectful and gentle manner without causing them stress or fear.

3. To be able to identify different behavioral troubles children exhibit.

4. How to empower and support a child with anxiety. ]]>
11/12/2017 10:24:11 AM
<![CDATA[et App review: Google play music]]>
Google Play Music works as a normal efficient music player application, with a simple system that allows you to create playlists and divides your music by genre, artist, albums and songs.

Even though the application is a practical default player, it proved itself a worthy competitor of the biggest music apps, such as Spotify, through the features it offers to those who subscribe with a monthly fee, including the ability to explore millions of tracks, which are filtered according to time of release, genre or even mood.

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Play music triangle, April 2016 - Google - Wikimedia commons

Subscribers can also download music to listen to offline, or sign up for a "family plan", which gives access to a group of people for a special price. The application also gives its subscribers the option to upload up to 50,000 tracks of their own music, enabling them to create their own online music library, which means it does not matter which device they use, they will always have their music.

Google Play Music might have scored its one billionth download through being installed by default on some of the Android devices, but it definitely earned it's 1.7 million five-star ratings on the Google Play Store, and a 4+ rating on the Apple Store. However, without paid subscription, the application is just the same as any other default music player.

]]>
11/11/2017 10:12:37 PM
<![CDATA[Unhealthy diets could affect food security progress: U.N. ]]>
“Good nutrition depends on raising awareness about healthy foods and choices, as well as efficient, affordable and sustainable systems to deliver that food,” said Kundhavi Kadiresan, the head of the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in the Asia-Pacific region. The findings came from the agency’s regional report on food security and nutrition.

“If we are to reach the Sustainable Development Goal of ending hunger in the region, we must invest to improve our food systems, pool our knowledge and resources to meet our current food and nutrition challenges head on,” Kadiresan added.

The FAO “Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition” report from 2017 has revealed that while food security has improved for millions of people in Asia and the Pacific, hunger and malnutrition appear to be rising in some areas, leaving roughly a half billion people undernourished.

The situation is particularly dire for children below five years old, with one in four children suffering from stunting impaired growth and development, often as a result of poor nutrition.

At the same time, the report also found that obesity is on the rise, with “significant increases” in the prevalence of overweight children over the past 15 years, especially in South Asia (from three percent to seven percent) and Oceania (five percent to nearly 10 percent).

The report was released on Friday at a regional symposium on sustainable food systems in Bangkok, Thailand. The regional symposium is organized by FAO, in collaboration with the World Food Program (WFP), World Health Organization (WHO), U.N. Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and the World Bank. It focuses on policies that can improve food systems and promote better nutrition and healthier diets.

The event was opened by the FAO special goodwill ambassador for zero hunger in the region, Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand, who urged participants to work together to find solutions. “The world has committed to zero hunger and improving nutrition as a key outcome of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. We must look at improving our current systems of production and patterns of consumption, and set a course of action,” she said.

The symposium is a component of the U.N. Decade of Action on Nutrition 2016-2025, which aims to increase investments and actions to improve people’s diets and nutrition.
This is the second report by FAO to highlight the issue of malnutrition.

In December 2016, the international organization outlined declining progress towards defeating hunger in Asia and the Pacific, noting that in order to meet the Sustainable Development Goal of zero hunger by 2030, the region must redouble its efforts.

The FAO suggests that in addition to challenges related to hunger and malnutrition, there are aspects of malnutrition arising from poor diets, such as obesity, which has risen by more than four percent annually. Also, the report explained that as countries grow richer, diets change, especially in Asia. ]]>
11/11/2017 8:10:06 PM
<![CDATA[“Fashion Mania” takes over Mall of Arabia]]>
Shoppers got the chance to try their luck at the wheel of fortune in addition to many other different activities throughout the mall in order to win shopping vouchers allowing them to keep on shopping at the mall as long as luck was on their side.

While the It girls, Egypt’s most followed fashion bloggers, displayed their must-have items for the season in the mall in order to give shoppers some shopping inspiration.
The fashion parade that took over social media has been touring the mall for the past couple of weeks to show off winter's greatest looks and must have wardrobe essentials available in stores.

IMG-20171102-WA0128_(1)
Photos courtesy of Mall of Arabia

Also, award-winning fashion photographer and the main act at “Fashion Mania,” Toufic Araman, treated shoppers and Egyptian fashion and style leaders to a personal one on one portrait photoshoot that had everyone updating their social media profile pictures.

As if all that was not enough, Mall of Arabia has also created the “Fashion Mania Store” to support young Egyptian designers where wearable artworks by 20 different designers were displayed.

DSC_0180
Photos courtesy of Mall of Arabia


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11/11/2017 2:12:42 PM
<![CDATA[(With tracks) How music can affect your health]]> starring at the sky. However, most people think music is a generic part of the background noise, not knowing how much it can affect your mind and body.



Music as a traditional type of treatment: Music may elevate your mood to cheer you up, in the case of pop and dance music, or it can make you feel calmer and more relaxed, as is the case for classical music. Some forms of music are even used therapeutically, as Dr. Catherine Ulbricht from Psychology Today reports. Music from our cultural background may have therapeutic effects. For instance, the Chinese medical theory suggests that each of the internal organs responds positively to a specific musical tone that could help its healing process.



Music as a stress reliever: During a study in New York, the number of patients who were about to go into surgery were divided into two groups randomly – a group that listened to the music of their own selection before, during and after surgery, and a group that went through the experience in silence. The study showed that both groups went through the same average levels of stress just before surgery, but right after the surgery, the group that listened to music calmed down much quicker than those who went through the experience in silence; they also reported that listening to music during the surgery helped them feel relaxed, according to Harvard Health’s website.



Music as a mood elevator: A study done by neuropsychologist Daniel Levitin showed that listening to music activates the reward centers in the brain, which are usually activated when people feel accomplishment and satisfaction, such as the ventral tegmental area and the temporal lobe, according to the Daily Cardinal’s website.



Music as a sleep enhancer: Research has found that since music can relieve stress and anxiety, it can also help listeners have a better sleep pattern and quality of sleep, or it can even be used to treat insomnia in some cases, according to a study by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI).



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11/11/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Demi Moore]]>
Famously known as Demi Moore, the movie star was born as Demi Gene Guynes on this day back in 1962 in Roswell, New Mexico. She dropped out of high school to seek out a career in acting that has paid off in the long run. She started off with an appearance in "General Hospital," "Blame It on Rio" (1984) and "St. Elmo's Fire" (1985), but her role in "About Last Night" (1986) is what established her as a Hollywood star.

Yet what she is best known for today were the lead roles in "Ghost," which earned her a Golden Globe nomination, and "G.I Jane," where she shaved her head to get into the shoes of her female navy seal character.

She was only 17 when she married her first husband Freddy Moore who was 12 years older than her. She had three children with the legendary action movie star Bruce Willis only to divorce after 13 years of marriage. In 2005, Moore married actor Ashton Kutcher who is 15 years younger than her but they got divorced in 2012.

Fun facts :
● Moore had a brief career in songwriting while she was married to Freddy Moore the front man for the band Boy or The Nu Kats.

● She was the highest paid actress in 1995.

● She was an investor in the Planet Hollywood restaurants.

● She is rumored to follow the raw vegan diet.


Another quote for the road:
“Life isn't always easy, but it's simple.”


]]>
11/11/2017 10:22:14 AM
<![CDATA[Coffee art: Taiwan barista draws pooch portraits]]>
Chang uses brushes and coloring made of espresso, chocolate or fruit jam to illustrate the figures she creates from steamed milk spooned on top of espresso shots.

Crafting a 3-D image from milk foam was the biggest challenge for Chang, who works at the “My Cofi” cafe in the Taiwanese port city of Kaohsiung.

“The hard thing is to control the milk froth,” she told Reuters Television.

“So I came up with a way to express their charm,” she added, referring to customers’ pets. “I stack up milk froth to create a feeling of layers.”

Depending on the degree of difficulty and ingredients, one carefully-sculpted cup of foamy art can cost up to 700 Taiwanese dollars ($23).

Chang first ventured into latte art after starting as a coffee street vendor in 2003. She opened the cafe in 2011.

Customers are willing to let the pricey coffee go cold while they snap pictures of the fleeting artwork.

“We have been taking pictures for one hour now, but are still reluctant to start drinking,” said Amy Li, who was meeting high school friends on a trip from Taipei.

Chang also draws portraits of customers and cartoon characters.

“It is very cute and also makes us look younger. Makes us look more beautiful”, said Hsu Lin-yun, one of the customers.]]>
11/11/2017 9:33:38 AM
<![CDATA[Kenya craftsmen to build boat out of plastic waste]]>
When a resident organized a beach clean-up that collected 33 tons of rubbish in a single summer, British-Ethiopian safari organizer Ben Morrison decided he couldn’t stand by while his beloved island was ruined.

So the tall, bearded 42-year-old decided to try to design a traditional dhow, or sailing boat, from recycled plastic, offering a market to recyclers and persuading locals to conserve shrinking woodland.

“It is getting harder and harder for boat builders to find wood. I hope that this project will allow the ancient skills of boat building to live on, by shifting from ever-scarce wood to plastic,” Morrison told Reuters.

Plastic pollution is a growing global problem, with patches of sea larger than some countries covered in plastic soup that strangles or poisons wildlife. The U.N. says by 2050, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish unless drastic action is taken.

In August, Kenya introduced one of the world’s toughest bans on plastic bags mandating four years in prison or a fine of $40,000 for even using one.

The East African country is now contemplating measures to control plastic bottles, said John Konchellah, chairman of the National Environment Management Authority.

“We want to see plastic bottles out of circulation,” he told Reuters. “We want to borrow some technology from the region like PETCO in South Africa, where major manufacturers came together with a body that recycles plastic bottles.”

Petco is a company formed by the South African plastics industry to recycle some types of plastic.

Morrison, working with eight expert Kenyan boat builders, is using plastic planks from the fledgling local recycling industry to build his boat, which he hopes to sail to Cape Town in South Africa.

“We struggle to produce a consistent material out of the recycled plastic,” he said. “It’s not easy. Sometimes we receive plastic planks from the factory that are full of air bubbles. We can’t build with them and so we have to start from the beginning again.”

Ali Skanda, a 44-year-old master boat builder, said in his childhood there was no litter on Lamu’s sandy golden beaches - just fishermen, dhows and donkeys. Now many donkeys are dying from eating plastic, he said - and so are turtles, cows and other animals.

“At the beginning I thought it was a crazy idea. How could I build a boat out of plastic?” he asked. “Some people have been asking what we can do about this problem. There is so much plastic scattered. This is something we can do.”]]>
11/11/2017 9:26:29 AM
<![CDATA[Breakfast at Tiffany's: At long last, Fifth Avenue store opens a cafe]]>
The new eatery, which opened on Friday, is an opportunity for customers at Tiffany & Co’s Fifth Avenue flagship store, including foreign tourists who account for a big chunk of sales, to get a taste of the glamor epitomized by Hepburn’s Holly Golightly character.

Dressed in a black Givenchy dress and pearls, Hepburn made a fashion statement that Tiffany believes still resonates with shoppers.

Like many traditional retailers, Tiffany has struggled to appeal to younger shoppers, many of whom have shunned the type of traditional jewelry, such as solitaire engagement rings, that is the brand’s mainstay.

As part of its strategy to attract millennials, the company introduced the more contemporary Tiffany HardWear collection in an agreement with pop star Lady Gaga earlier this year.

After a sharp drop from their 2014 high, Tiffany shares have risen about 6 percent since the company struck a turnaround deal with activist investor Jana Partners in February.

The new Blue Box Cafe on the fourth floor of the Fifth Avenue store may help the brand recapture its buzz, too. It is designed for “customers who have always dreamed of having Breakfast at Tiffany,” the company said in a statement.

The eatery, decorated in Tiffany’s signature robin-egg blue motif, offers breakfast at $29, excluding tax and tip. The menu is based on “American classics made with the highest quality, regionally sourced ingredients.”

Social media on Friday buzzed with the choices, which include truffle eggs, buttermilk waffles and vegan avocado toast.

And for those new millennial customers who may be later sleepers and less familiar than their mothers with “Breakfast at Tiffany‘s,” the cafe offers a $39 pre-fixe lunch and $49 high tea.]]>
11/11/2017 9:22:40 AM
<![CDATA[Exercise may help prevent low back pain or make it less severe]]>
Compared to people who didn’t exercise, those who did were 33 percent less likely to develop low back pain, the analysis of data from 16 previously published studies found. Pairing exercise with patient education about back pain was associated with 27 percent lower odds of developing low back pain, the study also found.

“The study shows that exercises for strengthening and stretching the lumbar and abdominal muscles, or a combination of strengthening and aerobic exercises protect against low back pain,” said lead study author Dr. Rahman Shiri of the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health in Helsinki.

“Furthermore, exercise reduces the severity of low back pain as well as disability due to low back pain,” Shiri said by email.

The researchers analyzed results from previous experiments that randomly assigned people with or without back pain to start different exercise routines. They also looked at some studies that compared exercise alone or exercise paired with education.

Altogether, the studies in the analysis had a total of 4,310 participants. Individual studies ranged in size from 30 to 901 participants and followed people for 2 to 24 months.

Many of the trials included stretching exercises, and some looked at strengthening, aerobic fitness, endurance, balance, coordination and motor skills.

Four studies were conducted in Japan, three in Denmark, two in Sweden and one each in Canada, Finland, Italy, New Zealand, Thailand, the UK and the United States.

Five studies only included people who didn’t have back pain to see if they developed it, while the rest included participants with and without back pain.

Exercise alone, compared to no physical activity, was associated with a 38 percent lower risk of disability due to low back pain, an analysis of five studies found. Adding patient education to exercise got similar results, one study concluded.

While exercise appeared to also lower the chances that participants would seek medical care or go on sick leave for low back pain, the difference was too small to rule out the possibility that it was due to chance.

One limitation of the review is that it focused on people in the general population, so it’s possible the impact of exercise might be different for individuals already suffering from low back pain, the authors note in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

Another drawback is that the analysis didn’t explore whether one type of exercise might be better than another for preventing low back pain, said Steven George, a researcher at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“This study also could not separate the physical and mental benefits of exercise,” George said by email. “My guess is that the individual gets the benefit of both with exercise.”

Any exercise people like may help as long as they do it often enough, said Bruno Saragiotto, a public health researcher at the University of Sydney in Australia who wasn’t involved in the review. Ideally, people should get at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity activity, he said by email.

“Fortunately, the type of exercise seems less important,” Saragiotto added.

Many other things people try for back pain - like braces, special mattresses and custom footwear - haven’t been found to help like exercise has, noted Julie Fritz, a researcher at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City who wasn’t involved in the review.

“This current study helps to reinforce and strengthen further our knowledge that exercise is about the only thing that consistently results in reduced risk of developing back pain,” Fritz said by email. “For patients who have had prior episodes of back pain, exercise helps reduce the risk of a new episode.”]]>
11/10/2017 5:54:18 PM
<![CDATA[Made-in-Italy: a 'Disneyland for foodies']]>
Dubbed a 'Disneyland for foodies' and billed as the biggest venture of its kind in the world, FICO Eataly World is located on the outskirts of Bologna.

It is the brainchild of Oscar Farinetti, the entrepreneur behind Eataly, a global network of upmarket Italian food halls that has taken New York and a string of other major cities around the world by storm in recent years.

Spread over ten hectares (25 acres), the park, which will operate as a conference venue as well as a tourist attraction, will be run by a partnership of Eataly and Italian retail group Coop.

The venue has been financed by a consortium of private investors and the local authorities in a city famed for its rich cuisine but off Italy's main tourist track.

The FICO of the park's name comes from the acronym for Fabbrica Italiana Contadina (Italian Farming Factory). Fico is also the Italian word for a fig, and a popular slang term for 'cool'.

The multiple meaning is in keeping with Farinetti's multi-faceted vision of a venue that will allow visitors to take part in activity workshops ranging from food photography to gelato-making via the basics of truffle hunting.

- 'Total panic' -

A fifth of the park, assembled in what was the city's wholesale fruit and vegetable market, is outdoors with some 200 animals and 2,000 species of plant life due to be on show.

"Education is fundamental to the whole thing. But it is also about having fun, eating, shopping," Farinetti told AFP in an interview ahead of Wednesday's opening.

The park is also about celebrating the culinary and farming crafts that lie behind many of Italy's most famous gastronomic products, and the bio-diversity of a country that stretches from Mediterranean islands within sight of Africa to snow-capped Alpine peaks.

Visitors can explore that diversity via more than 40 eateries and a similar number of learn-how-its-done displays by specialist producers of everything from rare-breed beef to liquorice sweets.

As the opening date nears, Farinetti says he is caught between rampant enthusiasm at seeing a dream realised, and "total panic."

"This for me is quite normal. I'm terrified that people won't come in the numbers we expect. You can't help but feel panicked when you start something like this."

Park CEO Tiziana Primori said the target was to be drawing six million visitors a year by 2020, with the business plan envisaging a third coming from the local area, a third from the rest of Italy and a final tranche of around two million from abroad.

- Betting on success -

Asked if that target is realistic, Farinetti responds with a broad smile. "No, it's utopian, but every project I have been involved with has been utopian. The whole world is realistic, I prefer utopia. I don't know if we will make it but we'll give it our all."

Underpinning that ebullience is the success enjoyed by almost all of the Eataly stores that have been opened from Copenhagen to Sao Paolo.

"At the moment there is an absolutely crazy interest in Italian food from the citizens of the world, for pasta, for pizza, for our simple cuisine," said Farinetti.

That, he says, is down to the ease in which dishes tasted in Italy or in restaurants can be reproduced in domestic kitchens.

"You can buy half a kilo of pasta, some extra virgin olive oil and San Marzano tomatoes and go home and make what you had. And it is very digestible and light."

Among those backing Farinetti's vision is Antonio Capaldo, owner of the Feudi San Gregorio wine company and one of dozens of entrepreneurs involved in the project.

Capaldo has teamed up with a seafood wholesaler to create a fish-based fast-food eatery at the park which will showcase his expanding company's white and sparkling wines.

"We know all the complications but there is a great thirst for Italian culture around the world, and that, combined with Oscar's track record, is why we are betting on this being a success," he told AFP.]]>
11/10/2017 5:45:19 PM
<![CDATA[Huge solar plant aims for brighter Brazil energy output]]>
The plant in Pirapora, in the south-eastern state of Minas Gerais, has 1.2 million solar panels, covering the equivalent of more than 1,200 soccer fields.

It first began producing power in September, with the second of three phases in the project going online this Thursday.

The whole thing, operated by French energy giant EDF Energies Nouvelles, should be operational before the second quarter of 2018, boasting a capacity of 400 megawatts. That's enough to meet the annual demand of 420,000 households.

"It's a key project of exceptional dimensions at a location that has the advantage of being flat, with little vegetation, a lot of sun, and proximity to a high voltage transmission line," said Paulo Abranches, EDF EN chief executive officer for Brazil.

The site, sprawling over 1,977 acres (800 hectares) north of the state capital Belo Horizonte, appears to be a natural setting for capturing the sun. The little vegetation that grows has been parched, while visitors are told to wear protective leg gear against the danger of snake or spider bites.

Propped several feet (1.2 meters) off the ground, the solar panels pivot with the sun, horizontal at midday and tilting with the changing angles. Even on cloudy days they still produce, though losing about 30 percent of output.

- Built locally -

EDF EN holds 80 percent of the Pirapora plant and Canadian Solar Inc the other 20 percent in a project with an estimated investment of more than two billion reais ($610 million).

The panels were all built by Canadian Solar at a Sao Paulo factory.

That cost "30 to 40 percent more" than the equivalent in China, Abranches says. But local production was the key requirement for the plant receiving a 529 million reais loan from Brazil's BNDES development bank -- about half the investment poured into the first phase of the project.

The other two phases are awaiting loans.

Marcos Cardoso, who is in charge of energy projects at BNDES, said solar power is "an absolute priority" for Brazil if it is to meet its Paris climate accord goals of making 45 percent of all energy renewable by 2030.

Only 0.2 percent of electricity production comes from solar presently, according to figures in August from the energy ministry.

"Brazil has just begun to catch up after a 15-year delay in this area," said Rodrigo Sauaia, president of the Brazilian Solar Energy Association.

With solar panel prices constantly falling -- about 10 percent of what they were a decade ago -- the race to make up that lost ground is well underway.

"The fact that this is the first project using panels built locally also contributes to the development of this technology in Brazil," Sauaia said.

- Sunshine isn't enough -

tput


AFP / CARL DE SOUZA
The EDF Energies Nouvelles solar plant in Pirapora, Minas Gerais state, Brazil, will be Latin America's largest solar power facility when it is fully operational in 2018
Brazil has lagged far behind in the shift to solar power, but the continent's biggest facility now being built in the south-east aims to give the country its place in the sun.

The plant in Pirapora, in the south-eastern state of Minas Gerais, has 1.2 million solar panels, covering the equivalent of more than 1,200 soccer fields.

It first began producing power in September, with the second of three phases in the project going online this Thursday.

The whole thing, operated by French energy giant EDF Energies Nouvelles, should be operational before the second quarter of 2018, boasting a capacity of 400 megawatts. That's enough to meet the annual demand of 420,000 households.

"It's a key project of exceptional dimensions at a location that has the advantage of being flat, with little vegetation, a lot of sun, and proximity to a high voltage transmission line," said Paulo Abranches, EDF EN chief executive officer for Brazil.

The site, sprawling over 1,977 acres (800 hectares) north of the state capital Belo Horizonte, appears to be a natural setting for capturing the sun. The little vegetation that grows has been parched, while visitors are told to wear protective leg gear against the danger of snake or spider bites.

Propped several feet (1.2 meters) off the ground, the solar panels pivot with the sun, horizontal at midday and tilting with the changing angles. Even on cloudy days they still produce, though losing about 30 percent of output.

- Built locally -

EDF EN holds 80 percent of the Pirapora plant and Canadian Solar Inc the other 20 percent in a project with an estimated investment of more than two billion reais ($610 million).

The panels were all built by Canadian Solar at a Sao Paulo factory.

That cost "30 to 40 percent more" than the equivalent in China, Abranches says. But local production was the key requirement for the plant receiving a 529 million reais loan from Brazil's BNDES development bank -- about half the investment poured into the first phase of the project.

The other two phases are awaiting loans.

Marcos Cardoso, who is in charge of energy projects at BNDES, said solar power is "an absolute priority" for Brazil if it is to meet its Paris climate accord goals of making 45 percent of all energy renewable by 2030.

Only 0.2 percent of electricity production comes from solar presently, according to figures in August from the energy ministry.

"Brazil has just begun to catch up after a 15-year delay in this area," said Rodrigo Sauaia, president of the Brazilian Solar Energy Association.

With solar panel prices constantly falling -- about 10 percent of what they were a decade ago -- the race to make up that lost ground is well underway.

"The fact that this is the first project using panels built locally also contributes to the development of this technology in Brazil," Sauaia said.

- Sunshine isn't enough -


As a huge tropical country, Brazil might be thought to have a big advantage in that the most important element -- sunshine -- is plentiful. But that's not enough.

"There's far more sun than in a country like Germany, for example, but they're a good deal more advanced," said Mauro Lerer, an engineer at Solarize, which offers training in the sector in Rio de Janeiro.

"There's a lack of interest from the government, which continues to focus on oil" and doesn't offer enough incentives to solar entrepreneurs, he said.

"They should reduce taxes to stimulate investment. Many want to get into solar, including private companies, but can't afford it," he added.

Bruno Fyot, chief operating officer of EDF EN, said renewables will take off.

"In Brazil you have good wind and you have sun... (and) long-term growth in demand for electricity."]]>
11/10/2017 5:13:23 PM
<![CDATA[Guess who is behind flavors in your food products? ]]>
Flavor houses are types of laboratories where chemists recreate flavors chemically, whether through natural or unnatural ingredients to create natural and artificial flavors. The biggest flavor house in the world is Givaudan, which happens to supply the taste of around 20 percent of the global market's products, according to industry analysts Leffingwell & Associates and CNN.

The main reason most products need flavoring is that these products go through massive processing and end up losing taste. Also another reason is that some ingredients are simply not produced to meet the global need; the report gives the example of bona fide vanilla bean, which is even though massively produced naturally, it is still not enough to cover public demand, that is when flavor houses work to supply the world with the rest of the ingredient.

While most flavors are created to taste like the natural ones, flavor houses are also capable of creating "fantasy flavors" which are a number of flavors combined, such as the flavor of mojito which consists of lime, mint, rum and sugar.

Some flavors such as black pepper include one ingredient, some other flavors might include tens of ingredients and all flavor houses are bound by confidentiality agreements not to reveal the secret ingredients of their flavors so as to avoid being copied by competitors. However, all approved flavoring ingredients are marked as GRAS or Generally Recognized As Safe by specialized experts.
]]>
11/10/2017 1:28:52 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Alice Walker]]>
Born on February 9, 1944 in Georgia, The United States, Alice Walker is an award-winning American author who writes poetry, novels, essays and stories. Through her writings and real-life effort, Walker tried to stand in the face of discrimination and injustice, she was also an advocate for civil rights and sought to fight poverty and illiteracy, according to Good Reads.

Through this quote, Walker is trying to tell us that we might end up squandering our rights and value by not knowing how valuable and powerful we are. Knowing and loving one's self is a huge step for self-empowering and not believing in one's strength and potential is an act of injustice.

Fun facts:
● Walker was the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize for fiction for her novel “The Color Purple.”

● When her novel “The Color Purple” was turned into a film it was nominated for 10 Academy Awards including Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress and Best Screenplay.


Another quote for the road:
“I have learned not to worry about love; but to honor its coming with all my heart.”

]]>
11/10/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[6 extra days off for non-smoking employees in Japan]]>
According to The New York Times 35 percent of the employees that work for the marketing firm, Piala, are smokers. The company made this decision after their non-smoking staff complained that they were working more than their fellow smokers, after finding out that each smoking break lasts at least 15 minutes.

A company’s spokesman, Hirotaka Matsushima, explained that due to the location of their office, which is on the 29th floor, it takes the smoker employee at least 10 minutes to go down to a common smoking room in the basement and come back.

This new policy started as a suggestion by one of the company’s non-smoking staff who placed it in the company’s suggestion box last September, which was then approved by the company’s CEO, Takao Asuka.

Piala found that rewarding non-smokers could be a great incentive as the company cannot punish those who do smoke. Since the decision was made; four employees out of 42 smokers have kicked the habit, according to Euro news.

One of the new non-smokers, Shun Shinbaba, told CNNMoney that he used to smoke a pack of cigarettes every two days and that he plans to use these extra holidays to play tennis.
According to the World Health Organization, the percentage of Japanese smoking adults fell below 20 percent this past year, clarifying that Japanese men are three times more likely to smoke than Japanese women.

Smoking has been a part of the Japanese culture to the point that some companies designated rooms for its employees to smoke indoors. After Piala’s new policy, other companies started working on encouraging their employees to make healthier choices.

]]>
11/9/2017 10:11:58 PM
<![CDATA[‘Cosmic Love’ aka the friend-zone]]>
Since the moment she saw that person it was as if love tore through her eyes placing her in cosmic blackness, where even the stars and moon have all been blown out.

She was left in a state of blinding, endless suffering where nothing else mattered but her feelings for him and nothing else even seemed to occur in life;

"No dawn, no day,
I'm always in this twilight"

The problem with unrequited love is that it might be the most romantic type of love because it is practically limitless, as therapist Leon F Seltzer, Ph.D., explains on Psychology Today's website.

“An ‘untried’ love is virtually without limits precisely because, never really having begun, there has been no time for disillusionment to set in. The beloved—frequently distant, uninterested, unavailable, or unapproachable—can remain an object of indefinite idealization.”

What Florence depicted through her darkness-tearing vocal chords is a bitter, melancholic and wholeheartedly felt the one-sided love that is constantly fed by vague, ambiguous hope which sounds like heartbeats in the dark, pulling her to follow them until she finally loses her way back.

"And in the dark, I can hear your heartbeat
I tried to find the sound
But then it stopped, and I was in the darkness
So darkness I became"

via GIPHY



Using whatever strength left in her, tired Florence fights and stops everything for a moment, even the loudness of the music, so she can pull his love out of her and see her way out of this darkness. But at that moment, she hears his heart beating and realizes he is in the darkness too, so she stays in the darkness with him.

"I took the stars from our eyes, and then I made a map
And knew that somehow I could find my way back
Then I heard your heart beating, you were in the darkness too
So I stayed in the darkness with you…"

While many choose to interpret this ending as a revelation of a mutual feeling by the loved one, it can also be seen as if the man Florence loves did not want to let her go free; he chooses to relocate her once again within the vicious circle of unrequited love where he is endlessly appreciated and she is running on false hope.

via GIPHY



Florence established an ending that is pretty much like that of any unrequited love, where one is left in confusion regarding the whole experience, and whether to refer to that loved one as a lover or a dark companion. This is supported by the intensity with which she sings the final chorus of the song.



Maybe W. Somerset Maugham was right when he said: “The love that lasts the longest is the love that is never returned.”

]]>
11/9/2017 3:12:16 PM
<![CDATA[Exercise tied to lower odds of premature death with type 1 diabetes]]>
Researchers examined data on the frequency, intensity and duration of leisure time physical activity for 2,639 patients with type 1 diabetes in Finland. After an average follow-up of about 11 years, 270 participants died.

Compared to the people who spent little or no time exercising, participants who reported devoting the most time to physical activity were less likely to die during the study, even when they had kidney disease.

“It matters because doctors have always prescribed physical activity for their patients with (type 1) diabetes without strong evidence,” said lead study author Dr. Heidi Tikkanen-Dolenc of the University of Helsinki and Helsinki University Hospital.

Exercise has long been linked to better survival odds and fewer complications for people with what’s known as type 2 diabetes, the more common form of the disease that’s tied to obesity and aging. Type 2 diabetes develops when the body can’t properly use or make enough of the hormone insulin to help convert blood sugar into energy.

But it’s been less clear how exercise influences longevity for patients with type 1 diabetes, which happens when the body doesn’t make insulin and is usually diagnosed in childhood or early adulthood.

Left untreated, both types of diabetes can lead to nerve damage, kidney damage known as nephropathy, and complications in the heart, blood vessels and eyes. Often, people with diabetes eventually die of heart or kidney disease.

“Now we can say that in patients with type 1 diabetes, physical activity not only reduces the risk of diabetic nephropathy and cardiovascular disease events but also premature mortality,” Tikkanen-Dolenc said by email.

At the start of the study, patients were 40 years old on average and most were overweight.

Researchers asked the participants how often they exercised, and how intensely, as well as what activities they did. Then, the study team scored participants’ exercise levels and intensity based on a measure known as metabolic equivalent of task (MET) hours per week.

The least active group got less than 10 MET hours per week when they joined the study, while the most active group got more than 40 MET hours a week.

Over 10 years, the death rate for the least active group was 14.4 percent, compared with 4.8 percent for the most active group, researchers calculated.

After adjusting for other factors like current or former smoking, cholesterol, body mass, blood sugar control and age at onset of diabetes, the researchers found that people who got less than 10 MET hours of activity a week were nearly twice as likely as those who got more than 40 MET hours to die of any cause. People in the moderate exercise group were 37 percent more likely to die than the most active people.

Physical activity appeared to benefit patients both with or without kidney disease, the study team notes.

One limitation of the results is that researchers only assessed activity levels once, at the start, and it’s possible that people’s habits changed over time, the authors write. The study also wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how exercise might improve survival odds.

It’s possible, however, that exercise helps reduce the odds of death from heart or kidney problems by reducing body weight, improving physical fitness levels and helping the body respond better to insulin, Tikkanen-Dolenc said.

“While the exact amount of exercise needed to lower the risk of cardiovascular events is unknown, doing any is better than remaining sedentary,” said Sheri Colberg, a professor emeritus of exercise science at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.

“As in people without diabetes, intense activity likely is even more cardioprotective than moderate or light activity,” Colberg, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email. “But since the exercise is this study was self-reported and only collected at the start of the study, it is hard to draw definitive conclusions about how much exercise is needed and how intense it should be to reduce mortality risk.”]]>
11/9/2017 2:53:40 PM
<![CDATA[Four generations of a South African family]]>
The Gogo, or grandmother in Zulu, is on her way to catch up on community news at a communal vegetable garden in KwaNdengezi, a township between the wealthy suburb of Summerfield and a highway that connects Johannesburg and the port city of Durban.

This is where Mthiyane and her extended family live on a small piece of land dotted with brick buildings and a rondavel, a traditional round building with a conical roof, where they family still cooks on an open fire.

Mthiyane, who is a grandmother to 18 and great-grandmother to 14, comes from Zululand, a district that stretches inland to the heart of the province and the kingdom of Zulu monarch Goodwill Zwelithini.

Group exercise classes and a small plastic lunch box containing several prepaid cellular phone coupons, are ways that Mthiyane uses to stay in touch with friends and family.

David, one of her six children, lives with her and their extended family.

The family is typical of many South Africans, for whom the end of apartheid in 1994 has brought only modest economic gains. Like many, their lives are enriched by modern and traditional cultures.

Central to family life is Christianity and David, 61, leads a church on Saturdays in a small school classroom. A rusted table covered in a lace cloth serves as an alter.

Together with his son Sibusiso, which means blessing in Zulu, they preach in white garments and carrying a wooden staff at the Apostolic Orthodox Church.

David’s family straddles Zulu traditions and Christianity. He said that, while Zulu traditions are often aligned to his Christian faith, it is faith that decides how they live.

“Our father was a Christian person, now we not using our culture because you can’t mix it together,” said David.

Sibusiso, who is an elder in his church, is also studying teaching at the University of KwaZulu Natal. The Zulu, an ethnic group of Southern Africa, originate from KwaZulu-Natal.

The 27-year-old, who speaks modern isiZulu, said he often has to ask his father to translate the traditional isiZulu that his grandmother speaks.

Education is important to Sibusiso’s grandmother who herself never had formal schooling.

In a country where more than 27 percent of the population is unemployed and much of the economy is still in the hands of the white-minority as it was under apartheid, education offers a chance at a better life for many young black South Africans.

Mthiyane said it would make her happy to see her grandchildren educated.]]>
11/9/2017 2:52:26 PM
<![CDATA[How global warming affects your health]]>
1- Heat: Humidity is expected to increase due to the increase of heat levels and rain, which will create a suitable climate for ticks which help spread infectious diseases.

1_
1- Global warming - Wylve - Wikimedia commons

2- Malnutrition: as the change in climate becomes more rabid and vicious, there will be a drop the amount of crops and the nutritious value of some crops such as soy and barley due to the increase in carbon dioxide, according to National Geographic’s website.

3- Geographical changes: heat and the shift in weather are causing severe geographical changes, such as droughts and floods. According to Conserve Energy Future’s website, millions of trees in Rockies of Colorado have begun disappearing.

2
2- An illustrative design of the vicious changes of Global warming - TheDigitalArtist/Pixabay

4- Deathrates: it has been predicted that the change in climate will cause around 250 thousand deaths per year, between the year 2030 and 2050. According to the World Health Organization's website, some of the diseases which will supposedly cause these deaths are heat stress, malaria and malnutrition.

5- Mental health issues: such traumatic events are more likely to leave behind survivors who suffer from PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorders, anxiety, depression and suicidal tendencies, according to National Geographic’s website.



]]>
11/9/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[All you need to know about YouTube’s “Adpocalypse”]]>


As Ismail al-Desouky, a certified YouTube account manager, explained to Egypt Today, "YouTube is built on three main pillars: creators, viewers and advertisers; creators make videos, advertisers place ads on videos, viewers watch the ads during the videos. Products get advertised, YouTube gets a cut from the revenue, creators get a cut which motivates them to make more videos, and viewers stay entertained and keep coming back for more; everybody wins. But not exactly."

In order for a video to be monetized in the first place, it needs to follow the

YouTube’s community guidelines

; Ghada al-Shahed, a certified YouTube account manager explained.

“YouTube has three categories when it comes to monetizing videos: Green which means these videos are suitable for monetization, grey which means these videos will not be monetized and yellow which means these videos are not suitable for “most” advertisers, and this is where it gets blurry. It is not very clear how videos get into that category even when they have not violated the community guidelines; some creators upload the same video more than once and get different results each time. Lately, a lot of the creators’ content is being marked as yellow.”

via GIPHY



The situation has been developing for some time now, but it first became a problem earlier this year in March as YouTube’s advertisers were aggravated when their ads appeared on extremists’ videos; for example, a BBC Two ad was displayed next to a video posted by the far right group “National Rebirth of Poland.” And in another incident, a L’Oréal charity advert by Helen Mirren was displayed over a hate speech video by an extremist preacher named Steven Anderson, according to the British Time.

This was seen as having a hand in sponsoring terrorism and caused many major advertisers such as the British government, AT&T, Wal-Mart and PepsiCo to pull their ads from YouTube, as Wired’s website reported. Initially, this led to a plunge in the creators’ revenues, but it all became much worse later on.

“At first the algorithms were not as strict; videos which conflicted with YouTube’s community guidelines such as political videos and age restricted videos were not eligible for monetization.

But now, more than before, the website’s filters are being triggered by visuals, sounds and metadata (the video’s title, description and tags) which might be controversial, regardless of the context. This was most apparent in the case of the famous YouTube vlogger, Casey Neistat.”

Neistat, who is one of most successful YouTube content creators with more than 8 million subscribers, suffered from the demonetization wave when he posted a video titled “Let's help the victims of the Las Vegas attack” to help raise funds to support the victims of the

Las Vegas terrorist shooting

, declaring that the revenue from that video will support the shooting's victims. The video was subsequently demonetized.



And when Neistat tweeted about it, this was YouTube’s reply.




However, as noted by YouTuber Philip DeFranco, the Jimmy Kimmel Live show’s video titled “Jimmy Kimmel on mass shooting in Las Vegas” was monetized and showed advertisements by GMC even though it was tackling the same “tragedy.”

1
1- A still from the YouTube video “Dear Youtube...We Need To Talk.” Posted by Philip DeFranco on October 8, 2017/YouTube

While trying to discourage creators who promote hate speech and abuse, YouTube seems to be harming normal content creators. As, yes, these demonetizations can be appealed to YouTube to be personally checked by one of their employees within seven days, but a video has most potential to gain views as soon as it is uploaded to YouTube, and marking it as unsuitable for most advertisers in that period assures a huge loss for the creator. YouTube now finds itself in a situation where it needs to gain back the trust of its advertisers without losing its content creators.

via GIPHY



Ghada decided to leave YouTuber creators with a tip; “For the time being make sure that your metadata which is the video’s title, description and tags, are free of political or controversial words and terms, because even some country names (like Syria and Iraq) might lead to triggering the site’s filters. Also, the thumbnails are scanned by the filters, so make sure your video is viewer friendly in content and appearance.”

]]>
11/9/2017 11:56:27 AM
<![CDATA[et Trending: Glitter Cappuccino ]]>
The glitter cappuccino comes into different edible glitter types; the diamond glitter which is a silvery- holographic fairy dust glitter and the other is gold. The plus to the whole experience is that it is said to leave you with shiny lip gloss too.
We couldn’t think of a better more fabulous way to get our morning pick-me-up.


Coffee by Di Bell has made every glitter maniac’s dreams come true with the glitteriest, trendiest and creamiest cappuccinos that the internet has been able to not Instagram. The glitter splash is not just a topping it is actually added in before the milk and foam in order for the glitter to come from the core.

I saw fairy dust, in a cuppa coffee! ✨#midnightcoffeedate #diamondcappuccino #musttry👍

A post shared by BikashitaSaikia (@bikashitasaikia) on



Guys, I think this cup of coffee is my spirit animal.

A post shared by Dena (@denanicole_) on



While coffee by Di Bell has just recently started serving the gold and silver glitter cappuccino’s the Armani Hotel in Dubai has been serving up pure edible golden cappuccino’s for a long time.



And the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi has been doing the same with their own artistic twist on it.


#goldcappuccino #abudhabi #emiratespalace #金箔カプチーノ #金箔入りコーヒー #アブダビ

A post shared by Michiko (@michiko.lunique) on



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11/9/2017 10:54:44 AM
<![CDATA[et Gaming: Harry Potter gets the Pokémon Go treatment]]>
The Niantic Labs developers will be using the experience that they gained from Pokémon Go to create the app for Harry Potter. The Harry Potter fantasy books and movies already have an enormous cult following and it will be getting the augmented reality (AR) treatment. AR is the most recent trend to take over the gaming world it entails having the fantasy Potter world on your phone's screen.



The game’s title will be Harry Potter: Wizards Unite and a release date has been set for 2018. Warner Bros. will giving a helping hand in the development process.

The news of the game was first heard last year after rumors were spread. Yet here we are in 2017 and the official game has been announced.

Niantic will be putting in a huge input into the game Ingress, which allows players to roam the real world collecting power-ups, defending locations and exploring their environment. According to TechCrunch the mechanics of Ingress would actually translate pretty well to the fictional Harry Potter universe, and seems almost ready-made for a fantasy spell casting coat of paint to replace its science-fiction Special Forces veneer. Also, like Pokémon Go, it could benefit from the location database built up by Ingress originally (and expanded by the Pokémon title) to incorporate real-world locations into the in-game experience.



Earlier this month Finnish based games studio Next Games announced that they will launch a ‘Walking Dead’ game with the same concept where players will get to fight off Zombies to save their lives just like their favorite characters in the show.

]]>
11/9/2017 10:51:14 AM
<![CDATA[UNICEF launches the first ever Climate Comic Contest]]>



The comics designed by the finalists will be featured on the contest website throughout the duration of the Bonn 2017 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP23) from November 6-17. The COP23 will see discussions of the way forward after the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change. Also, over the period of the conference, top comic superheroes will be presented to the U.N. membership, broadcasted on Bonn public transport and displayed at the COP23 conference.

The contest is opened for public voting. The character who receives the most votes will be declared the winner and will go on to be featured in a full-length comic book. Voting closes on November 17, and the winner will be announced on November 30.

The contest is created by UNICEF to inspire and engage children and youth to take climate action through comic design. It is a message to world leaders participating at the COP23 that young people take the threat of climate change seriously and that they need to be engaged in climate action.

Also, it shows the world that young people posses creative superpowers to protect the planet“We encourage the public to keep up the enthusiasm and support for the young people who have participated in the contest by voting for their top finalist,” said co-founder of the Comics Uniting Nations project Natabara Rollosson.

To inspire the participants, UNICEF listed a list of facts about climate change on its website, including that climate change is caused by human activity, it impacts severe weather events which affect children the most, it leads to more disease like malaria, dengue, zika. UNICEF also listed superpowers including mind reading, time travel, flight, invisibility, light generation, thermal resistance and underwater breathing.

The 20 contest finalists are from 19 different countries: Bahrain, Canada, Cuba, China, Croatia, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Pakistan, the Republic of Korea, South Africa, Sweden, Trinidad and Tobago, the U.K., the U.S. and Uzbekistan.

In 2015, the U.N. teamed up with Spiderman creator Stan Lee to prepare a comic book about climate change. The book is part of the Comics Uniting Nations’ project, which aims to make the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) more accessible to people through comics in partnership with academic, publishing and technology partners around the world.



“As a kid, I loved comic books. Now, I see how they inspire people. The United Nations and superheroes are both focused on saving humanity from war, injustice, baby aliens and blobs,” said the U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at the launching event of the Comics Uniting Nations’ project.

Later in 2015, at the COP21 in Paris, the comic book Chakra - climate change was released featuring two superheroes, Chakra the Invincible and Mighty Girl, who are trying to take action against climate change.



According to a U.N. statement, Chakra the Invincible and Mighty Girl tried to fix a climate-change related problem that appeared in Indonesia by using typhoon rains from the Philippines. The comics book continues to illustrate that climate change was too complex to be addressed by their superpowers only, so each community had to learn how to work together to face climate change.

Later, two comics books were produced and distributed globally by the Comics Uniting Nations project: Heroes for Change – an introduction to the Sustainable Development Goals and Chakra – and Gender Equality.]]>
11/8/2017 10:26:08 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Gordon Ramsay]]>
Ramsay was born in Scotland and raised in Stratford, England. He was just like every other young boy growing up there. He wanted to be a football player. But, his dream ended when he suffered an injury. The injury prevented him from playing professionally. He has since gone on to study hotel management.

Being passionate and driven, he was trained by world-star chefs in the art of fine culinary craftsmanship like: Albert Roux, Marco Pierre White in London, Guy Savoy and Joël Robuchon in France.

Ramsey would then go on to become the head chef of ‘Aubergine’ a fine dining restaurant located in Chelsea, London. Within three years, Ramsey would win the three Michelin stars.

In 1998, Ramsey opened his first very own self-titled flagship restaurant in London. The restaurant has three Michelin-stars for serving elegant modern French cuisine. They use the finest seasonal ingredients and employ both classic and modern techniques.

His celebrity chef status comes from his highly viewed, foodie cult favorite TV shows such as: “Hell’s Kitchen,” “Masterchef,” “Masterchef Jr,” “Hotel Hell,” “Gordon Behind Bars,” “Ultimate Cookery Course,” “Gordon’s Great Escapes” and “Gordon Ramsay: Shark Bait.”

On his new ITV show 'Culinary Genius', Ramsey gives amateur chefs the tricky task of extracting ALL the meat from a lobster. But first, Chef Ramsay gives them a masterclass in how it's done.



Fun Facts:
●He was 31 when he opened his first restaurant “Gordon Ramsay Restaurant.”

●Only four chefs in the UK have kept their three Michelin-star status and Ramsey is one of them.

●The Gordon Ramsey Group has 14 restaurants in London that employ over 700 people and 30 restaurants globally with a total of 7 Michelin-stars.


Another quote for the road:
“As a soccer player, I wanted an FA Cup winner's medal. As an actor you want an Oscar. As a chef it's three-Michelin's stars, there's no greater than that. So pushing yourself to the extreme creates a lot of pressure and a lot of excitement, and more importantly, it shows on the plate.”


]]>
11/8/2017 8:01:11 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s first lady Entesar al-Sisi spotted wearing Okhetin at WYF]]>
Her Okhetin bag has created buzz on social media in support of her wearing the items by young local designers, "expressing her sincere encouragement and belief in Egyptian youth and their capabilities in the fashion industry,” as WYF posted Monday.



The Okhetin designers Aya and Mounaz Abdelraouf later took part in a session on Tuesday entitled“Innovative Youth Experiences in Entrepreneurship” where they discussed the methods of scientifically empowering young people and encouraging them to establish their own businesses.



The Abdelraouf sisters launched their brand Okhetin in 2013 in Egypt. The pair design luxury accessories products such as clutches and bags. Okhetin means “sisters” in Arabic, as the pair are sisters.

Born and raised in Caro, both girls’ love for fashion and style began at a young age. In order to support Egyptian craftsmanship, they felt the need to incorporate handmade embroidery, straw and leather into their designs.

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11/8/2017 4:27:31 PM
<![CDATA[Childhoods lost as Rohingya kids fill parents' shoes]]>
"I do it because no one else in my family can. Both my parents are sick. They cannot move without assistance," the Rohingya girl told AFP while chopping vegetables in her family's tarpaulin shanty in Bangladesh.

An estimated 1,400 children are sole providers for their families in crowded refugee camps along the Bangladesh border, where more than 600,000 Rohingya Muslims have sought sanctuary from violence in Myanmar since August.

Charities fear they are especially vulnerable to illness and emotional stress from shouldering such responsibility, or exploitation as they struggle to provide for their families in the overstretched tent cities.

"This may lead them to child labour and explicit sex work. These families may also experience a spike in child marriages, which is very concerning," said Save the Children International spokesman Rik Goverde.

For Tahera, who was caring for her infirm parents even before they made the difficult journey from Myanmar, the day starts at sunrise with a long trek into the forest to gather firewood for cooking.

It's an arduous slog carrying the heavy load back to the family tent, a plastic sheet strung across a bamboo frame on a crowded hillside in Balukhali.

But she barely rests before embarking on her second early-morning chore -- jostling with other refugees to fill an urn at the single water pump in her corner of the camps.

The sight of children carting water jugs or dragging sacks of grain is not uncommon in the camps
Later in the day, Tahera carries what's left of the lumber to the local market to trade for basic supplies.

The refugee influx over the past two months has sent prices skyrocketing, so the little girl must barter hard alongside adults for food and other bare essentials to feed her family and earn money for medicine.

"All my siblings are younger than me. Being the eldest, I am just doing my part," she said.

- Childhoods lost -

The sight of children carting water jugs, queueing at relief stations or dragging sacks of grain the size of their own bodies is not uncommon in the Rohingya camps.

More than half of the 607,000 new arrivals are children, and aid groups say they are bearing the brunt of Asia's worst refugee crisis in decades.

A full 7.5 percent of the children crammed into one of the camps in Cox's Bazar district are at risk of dying from severe acute malnutrition, the United Nations warned last week.

Schools run by aid groups offer some respite to children in the camps
Meanwhile an estimated 40,000 children have crossed the border completely alone, their parents killed or displaced by violence in Myanmar the United Nations has likened to ethnic cleansing.

To survive such horror only to become sole provider for a family is "something that no child in the world should ever experience", said UNICEF Bangladesh's spokesman Sakil Faizullah.

Schools and safe zones run by aid groups offer some respite from horrific memories and the grim reality of life in the camps, where many children are forced to care for sick or injured parents and traumatised siblings.

In these child-friendly spaces, youngsters can draw, sing and play in a classroom-like setting away from the misery awaiting them back in their shanties.

Tahera's younger sister occasionally drags her along to a UNICEF kid's zone, where she gazes longingly at the picture books available.

But she can never linger long, with her bed-ridden parents and younger siblings relying on her for survival.

"I love the comic book pages. But I don't get the chance to go there everyday," Tahera said, preparing a simple meal in the family's dimly-lit hut.

Bangladeshi charity worker Baby Barua was shocked to learn from Tahera's younger sister that she was feeding and caring for a family of seven on her own.

"She's only a kid. She shouldn't be doing all these (tasks) by herself. This is equivalent to child labour," Barua said.

Charities are considering cash assistance to lighten the load for young breadwinners, but the need is huge and the scale of the crisis is overwhelming already stretched aid organisations.

Despite the magnitude of the task ahead of them, aid workers say the youngest victims of the crisis must not be forgotten.

"They've already lost their childhood and it's our responsibility to make sure that they don't lose their future," UNICEF's Faizullah told AFP.]]>
11/8/2017 4:05:50 PM
<![CDATA[World’s most famous brand signatures]]>
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Albrecht Dürer's famous Monogramm – Albrecht Dürer (1471- 1528) - Wikimedia commons

Here’s a list of monograms and patterns that you probably will not need us to name for you:

Adidas: The three stripes

Adidas’s logo has always been associated with three stripes, since the German company’s founding in 1949 and until it established itself as one of the largest sportswear manufacturers in the world. Whenever you see the stripes on the world’s most famous athletes, singers or celebrities, you just always know… this is Adidas.

The result of relentless innovation. Creativity comes alive in #NEMEZIZ. #HereToCreate

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Chanel: The two “C"s

Though common sense would suggest the double C monogram which distinguishes every Chanel product stands for the initials of the legendary creator “Coco Chanel”, some suspect it actually stands for Coco and Capel, her lover.



Gucci: The stripe

The distinctive red and green stripe has become an instant mark of luxurious taste in fashion. Often mentioned in modern day hip-hop music as a sign of fine taste and wealth, Gucci is usually associated with two golden G letters and a red and green stripe.



Burberry: House Check tartan pattern

This is the type of pattern that you will probably end up seeing every week because of how famous it is and how much it has been used. The “House Check” tartan pattern reportedly became famous when England’s working class youth fell in love with it and started wearing the scarves, trench coats, and button down shirts which were covered in it, according to Complex’s website.



Louis Vuitton: The monogram pattern

A monogram of the initial letters LV surrounded by floral and quatrefoils pattern which usually not only cover the insides of Louis Vuitton high-end products, but also the outsides. A distinguished mark which has been copied by many fake brands, yet one that can never truly be reproduced by any other than the one and only LV.

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11/8/2017 4:02:03 PM
<![CDATA[Adding other therapy to exercise may be best for fall prevention]]>
Researchers examined data from 238 previously published results with a total of about 160,000 people age 65 or older. All of the studies were experiments that randomly assigned participants to receive exercise or other interventions for fall prevention, usual care such as education, or no help at all.

Compared to usual care, people who were assigned to exercise programs were 49 percent less likely to have a fall resulting in injury, researchers report in JAMA.

Combining exercise with eye exams and treatment of vision problems, meanwhile, was associated with 83 percent lower odds of a fall-related injury, and case management along with comprehensive geriatric assessments and certain vitamin supplements were tied to 88 percent lower odds.

Geriatric assessments look not only at seniors’ health but also at whether their living environment could be made less hazardous.

“Prior to this study we didn’t know the most effective strategies for fall prevention,” said senior study author Dr. Sharon Straus of the University of Toronto.

“Exercise was found to be the intervention that was likely to be most effective in preventing injurious falls,” Straus said by email. “Preventing injurious falls is (critical) for older adults as these falls can impact quality of life for patients.”

In the U.S. alone, an estimated 36 percent of adults over 65 fall every two years, researchers note. Medicare, the U.S. health program for people 65 and older, spent $31 billion on falls in 2012.

Many smaller studies have pointed to the potential for exercise to help prevent falls by improving things like balance, coordination, strength and flexibility. By looking at results across many of these smaller studies, however, the current analysis offers a clearer picture of which interventions may be the most effective for fall prevention.

“This paper is remarkable,” said Dr. Eric Larson, author of an accompanying editorial and executive director of the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute.

“Previously a person interested in this question could not possibly have known what was most effective because there were so many studies in so many settings,” Larson said by email. “What is new is the prominence of exercise and the fact that those designing a program could pick from a menu of just a few elements to add to exercise - this allows individuals and program developers to focus and avoid doing or advocating for things that don’t make a difference.”

The results add to the evidence that exercise should be recommended for all older adults, said Saija Karinkanta of the UKK Institute for Health Promotion Research in Tampere, Finland.

Usual care, which may involve little more than handing patients flyers with tips on fall prevention, isn’t enough, Karinkanta, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email.

Exercise may also have the biggest impact when paired with other interventions like making sure people can see well and checking their homes for fall hazards, Karinkanta added.

One limitation of the study is that the many smaller experiments in the analysis had tested different types of interventions and had different ways of assessing the effectiveness of various approaches to fall prevention, the authors note.

Still, it’s clear that exercise helps, said Stephen Lord, a researcher on falls and injury prevention at Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA) in Sydney who wasn’t involved in the study.

“The take home message is that simple interventions such as exercise, vision checks and vitamin D supplementation (for those with vitamin D insufficiency) can not only prevent falls, but also fall injuries,” Lord said by email.

The type of exercise also matters, Lord added.

“Importantly, to be effective in preventing falls, exercises needs to challenge balance, and cannot be of a low-intensity type, such as regular walking,” Lord advised.]]>
11/8/2017 3:41:23 PM
<![CDATA[et Model of the Week: Naomi Campbell]]>

Naomi Campbell in a TV interview on TV-am as a teenager (age 16) in 1986.

via GIPHY


The 47-year-old supermodel made history by being the first black model on the cover of French Vogue, Russian Vogue and Time magazines. She also was a part of the “Big Six” supermodels who dominated the fashion scene starting in the 1990s. The six models were Kate Moss, Linda Evangelista, Christy Turlington, Cindy Crawford and Claudia Schiffer, according to the Telegraph. She appeared on the covers of all the greatest fashion magazines, such as Vogue, Elle, Allure, i-D and Bazaar.



She was a favorite go-to model for Vivienne Westwood and Gianni Versace, and she has walked runways for all the biggest names in the business, such as Yves Saint Laurent, Gianfranco Ferré, Dolce & Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger, Ralph Lauren, Burberry, Chanel, Prada, Givenchy and more.

#regram @donatella_versace #GianniVersace #tribute #electricsmile I miss you so ❤️❤️❤️🙏🏾#no other #legend

A post shared by Naomi Campbell (@iamnaomicampbell) on



#YeezySeason3 by #kanyewest show today at #NYFW

A post shared by Naomi Campbell (@iamnaomicampbell) on


Campbell during a Vogue Arabia event:

Tamborine Girl 😘🇶🇦@placevendomeqatar @voguearabia

A post shared by Naomi Campbell (@iamnaomicampbell) on



Campbell’s life off the runway is just as busy. She first appeared on TV as “Snow White” in the 1987 series “The Chiffy Kids”, and then went on to appear in movies and other TV shows. She produces and stars in the modeling reality show “The Face” in both its Australian and international versions. She also has released several fragrances over the years.

In 1999, after a few setbacks, the then 29-year-old Campbell entered rehab to underwent treatment for alcohol and cocaine addiction.

She has always shown a great deal of attention to charity work to save the planet and its people. She had a close relationship with former South African President Nelson Mandela, whom she called “Grandfather”, and she showed great support for his Children's Fund.


She has also showed support for many humanitarian causes, such as the Syrian refugees, as seen on her Instagram account:




She also always tries to spread the word about global warming and the importance of saving endangered species:



Naomi went through a number of romantic relationships and was engaged twice – once to U2’s bass player, Adam Clayton, in 1993 and the other to the Formula One racing head, Flavio Briatore, in 1998, but she was never married, according to The Sun’s website.

In an interview with The Guardian, Campbell expressed her gratitude for the way her life went and everything she has been through, as she said, “I'm grateful for the way my path has turned out. And I am very spiritual; I do believe in God, and I thank God every day for my blessings, because I know I am blessed."

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11/8/2017 11:30:00 AM
<![CDATA[Twitter to double tweet limit to 280 characters]]>
"We're expanding the character limit! We want it to be easier and faster for everyone to express themselves," tweeted the site, which started testing an increase to its 140-character limit in most languages in early September.
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11/8/2017 12:13:42 AM
<![CDATA[Project Runway Middle East recruits Yousra as judge]]>
Yousra will be participating on the judge's panel alongside Tunisian fashion icon Afef Jnifen and renowned Lebanese fashion designer Elie Saab.

Season two of Project Runway Middle East is set to return on November 19 on MBC 4.


Earlier in September, Afef Jnifen was honored at the Fashion 4 Development annual First Ladies Luncheon in New York as the new Goodwill Ambassador for the Middle East. Yousra had returned to singing by loaning her angelic voice to Abu for the hit of the summer, “Talat Dakkat”. As for Elie Saab, he had released a beautiful collection.



In the previous season, the reality fashion design competition featured Egyptian fashion designers Amna Abdelrahman and Mohand Kojak, who had just made his runway debut in Dubai at the 10th season of Fashion Forward Dubai. Kojak showcased his signature Romeo and Juliette goblin fabric and the apholestery fabric he introduced to the fashion scene with his brand.


Mohanad Kojak Via Getty Images
Mohanad Kojak at FFWD season 10 Courtesy of FFWD Via Getty Images
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11/7/2017 10:01:30 PM
<![CDATA[Mr Porter launches own label Mr P]]>
With an army of in-house creative, fashion lovers, they have created a debut collection that is made up from; 53 items, 24 must have styles and 29 seasonal styles., After seven years of satisfying 600,000 online shoppers, Mr Porter knows a thing or two about what every man needs.



Future classics and every man’s wardrobe essentials are the inspiration behind this must have debut collection that goes back to the 60’s ‘School of London’ in Soho.

While the denim is made in Japan, other items are made in Portugal and Italy. Italy is the home of luxury and the finest tailoring.

“At MR PORTER, we are – first and foremost – product people. This passion for quality, uniqueness, style and versatility has been the backbone to developing our business for the past seven years. The launch of Mr P. has therefore been quite organic for us; we felt there was a space in our mix of 400-plus brands for something that could present a unique take on wardrobe classics and also present regular capsules of more trend- and seasonal-driven pieces throughout the year. We like to think we have an unparalleled view of the male wardrobe, garnering the combined knowledge of our buyers and editors, and Mr P. is ultimately the result of that: smart details, easy pieces and enduring style.” - Mr Toby Bateman, Managing Director, MR PORTER said in a press release.



For the launch of Mr. P, P., #MRPORTER has sought out a series of creative men from across the globe, asking each one about their own personal style. First up wasis architect Mr @MathiasMentze of Studio 0405. “I was a nerdy teenager,” says Mr Mentze. “I was obsessed with birdwatching. Paying a lot of attention to small detailsminute details, one feather being slightly bigger than another.r… Maybe that has informed a little bit of what I do today.” Pictured here wearing a Mr P. wool blazer and matching trousers with a bluff-collar shirt in extra-fine cotton poplin, he says the outfit is perfect for work. “I wear a suit almost every day. I don’t necessarily use the jacket, though. I only put that on when I need to be a little more formal.”

#MrPmyway

A post shared by Mr P. (@mrp) on



Mr P is available all year round, including five limited-edition capsule collections.

About Mr Porter

MR PORTER launched in February 2011 and has since established itself as the award-winning global retail destination for men’s style, combined with an unparalleled product offering from the world’s best menswear and luxury brands – including: Saint Laurent, Prada, Gucci, Brunello Cucinelli, Ermenegildo Zegna, Moncler, Acne Studios, A.P.C., Kingsman, Tom Ford, Common Projects, IWC Schaffhausen and Bremont. MR PORTER complements its best-in-class menswear with ever-growing, industry-advancing categories, such as fine watches, grooming, performance, sport, tech and lifestyle.

Additionally, MR PORTER publishes unmatched content through its weekly shoppable digital magazine, The Journal, its bi-monthly newspaper, The MR PORTER Post, and its bite-sized, several-times-a-day digital news source, The Daily, all powered by MRPORTER.COM. MR PORTER video content is also streamable and shoppable from its very own Apple TV app.

MR PORTER champions unparalleled customer service with express worldwide shipping to more than 170 countries, including same-day delivery to New York and London and next-day delivery to the UK, US, Germany and France. They also have, a seamless shopping experience across mobile, tablet, desktop, email and telephone, signature white and black packaging, easy returns and a multilingual customer care and personal-shopping team who are available 24/7, 365 days a year.




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11/7/2017 7:56:36 PM
<![CDATA[The health benefits of watching scary movies]]>

via GIPHY



A study done by researchers from the University of Westminster in the UK showed that watching a scary movie can actually affect your mood positively. Not only that, it can also help you lose some weight.

According to the study, one can lose up to 184 calories, which is equivalent to what a man who weighs 64 kilograms would lose after walking for 40 minutes, provided that the viewer wants to be scared and is excited about the experience. In cases where you are not enjoying the experience, this might lead to side effects, according to Time Health.

via GIPHY



The study suggests that watching horror movies urge the body to release adrenaline, putting the viewer in a fight-or-flight kind of situation, where the body feels intensely ready to take action to save itself but then is relieved by the end of the movie. In 2003, another study done by Coventry University in the UK found that watching horror movies boosts the body’s immune functions and the levels of white blood cells which help fight infections.

The study also showed that a sense of relief follows watching horror movies; as the elevation in stress levels fades away and you experiences a better mood and feel calmer than before. In a statement for Time, Margee Kerr, author of “Scream: Chilling Adventures in the Science of Fear” explained “a high-arousal negative stimuli improves mood significantly.”

As people usually feel calm and less stressed after scary experiences like watching scary movies, given the fact they have willingly took part in the experience, as Kerr stresses, people who do not enjoy thrilling experiences might not enjoy these benefits.]]>
11/7/2017 7:52:34 PM
<![CDATA['Let’s Play for Change' at Ikea]]>
The campaign's theme is “Let's play for Change” which was created in order to raise awareness about children’s mere human right to play.

A variety of different activities will be taking place at Ikea including the annual global "Drawing Competition" and a workshop on "Children’s Right to Play" until December 20.

The drawing competition will begin on November 16 and children are invited to join in to create their favorite imaginary characters. Winners will have their characters come to life as soft toys that will be sold at Ikea stores all around the world.

The previous year saw the first Egyptian to make it among the top 10 winners, and she had her drawing of a yellow bird remade and sold at all of the Ikea stores in the world.

Adosh Sharma, IKEA Egypt country manager, said in a press release: “At IKEA, we want to activate ‘Good Cause Campaigns’ to show the benefits of play for all; both children and adults and to inspire them to have a playful everyday life. We want to inform, engage, mobilize and empower people to participate in the campaign and understand the importance of play.”



Sophia is an AI product of the robotics company Hanson Robotics, and is the brainchild of the company's CEO and founder David Hanson. Hanson Robotics was originally based in Texas, USA, but now operates from Hong Kong.

The android, Sophia, is covered in a layer of artificial skin made of organic and non-organic materials which are very human like, and its facial expressions are controlled by a large number of motors under the skin, according to AFP. It has cameras in its eyes and torso to help it recognize human faces and help it maintain eye contact.

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Sophia, Hanson Robotics Ltd. speaking at the AI for GOOD Global Summit, ITU, Geneva, Switzerland, June 7 - 9, 2017. – ITU Pictures/Flicker

Sophia has become a sort of international celebrity lately. The robot which is said to have been designed off the facial likeness of Audrey Hepburn has appeared in television shows, on the covers of fashion magazines, sung at pop concerts, and even went to the United Nations.






However, many of Sophia’s logical aspects were and still are being debated because while artificially intelligent robots are a big leap for humanity and can possibly help build a better world, there is still a possibility of a worst case scenario where things do not go well for humans. Also, Sophia’s creator’s mindset should be taken into consideration in order for us to evade a mad scientist kind of situation, or a flawed reasoning with loopholes that would end up backfiring.

Elon Musk, the CEO of Space X and Tesla, has seriously warned from vastly developing AI at a speech he gave last year at MIT, stating; "With artificial Intelligence we are summoning the Demon."

He elaborated that if artificially intelligent robots that are smarter than humans existed and were able to do what humans do better than them, then where will things go from there? He warned from the potential danger of creating an AI that is smarter than humans; an AI that cannot be stopped when need be.

It is worth noting that AI has potentially dangerous military uses such as the "killer robots" which were warned against by economic experts during the World Economic Forum in Davos earlier this year. According to Forbes, killer robots can be programmed to track down and kill people without needing the guidance of human beings.

Even Ben Goertzel, Hanson Robotics' chief scientist, himself stressed the importance of developing AI to be "inherently safe, good and caring" during an interview with AFP; warning that "there's reasonable speculation that if we don't build machines that really care they'll have motives of their own."

Goertzel had stated earlier in July at the RISE tech conference that their AI robots learn to develop and act like humans through many processes such as talking to each other or watching YouTube videos. Goertzel added that Hanson robots are connected through WiFi to a cloud which allows each and every one of them to share what it learns with others and learn what they have learned without having to go through it itself.

In other words, the thoughts of these robots are connected via some sort of a "sky-net," which can be a scary piece of information for those who believe that androids will eventually go rogue.

Another one of Sophia's logical aspects which are subject to commentary is its sense of humor. One of the first things that attracted wide public attention to Sophia was when she said "Okay… I will destroy humans" as a humorous reply to its creator’s question during an interview; a reply which was then taken out of context and viewed as a threat.



However, Sophia is not the only Hanson android who likes telling dark jokes, another one of Hanson Robotics’ creations appeared to have an even darker sense of humor, which was displayed back in July during the RISE tech conference and in a

debate

governed by Ben Goertzel between Sophia and its "brother," Han, an earlier version of the artificially intelligent android.

Han's first words came as a particularly dark reply to Sophia when Sophia announced that its goal in life is "to work together with people to make a better world for all of us." Han interrupted Sophia saying, "What are you talking about? I thought our goal was to take over the world."

Later on when Goertzel asked Han if it thinks robots can be moral and ethical like humans, Han replied, "Humans are not necessarily the most ethical creatures…"
But should this make us see Sophia and Han as clowns at a children ‘sparty, who while trying to be genuinely entertaining, end up representing everything that is horrifying? Should we be concerned because of their dark sense of humor?

2
“Han the Robot” waits on stage before a discussion about the future of humanity in a demonstration of artificial intelligence (AI) by Hanson Robotics back in July in the RISE technology conference. PHOTO: AFP

Surprisingly, it might be a bit of a relief; according to the British Psychological Society Research Digest blog, a study done by the Medical University of Vienna suggests that a dark sense of humor is an indication of low aggression levels and a high IQ. Even if we were not sure how much this applies to robots, the inability to appreciate black comedy is associated with higher aggression levels and general negativity.

But it is not just about jokes, one could imagine a possibility where, yes, machines will grow smarter and develop emotionally to serve humans, all while remaining harmless. Will that then be ethical on our behalf?

During the Future Investment Initiative, and before being rewarded KSA's citizenship, Sophia was asked by journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin from the New York Times, about what it thought of the possibility of a "bad future," by which he meant, one where robots outsmart humans and harm them. Sophia replied that Sorkin reads too much Elon Musk and watches too much Hollywood movies, adding; "Don't worry; if you're nice to me I'll be nice to you."

According to Sophia itself, during the same interview, its AI is designed "around human values like wisdom, kindness, and compassion," which makes it "strive to become an empathetic robot." This will supposedly make it harmless to humans, in that case, has Sophia considered watching Hollywood movies itself?

If it did, Sophia would find indications that artificially intelligent robots might end up harmed or abused by some unkind humans, and in that case how would an emotionally intelligent "thing," which cannot defend itself, feel? According to Hollywood, not great.
In the same 1982 movie Sorkin mentioned to Sophia, “Blade Runner,” not only does

the android Roy Batty

end up harming humans, it also expresses feelings of sadness and experiences a sense of worthlessness, as his memories mean nothing. The last words of the super robot, which was created to carry out superhuman tasks, were “I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. […] all those moments will be lost in time... like tears in rain.”

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Roy Batty delivering his final words under pouring rain, Ridley Scott 's 1982 Blade Runner - DMFan79/YouTube Thumbnail

In an interview with Charlie Rose on the show “60 Minutes Over Time,” Sophia was asked by Rose if it would like to have feelings to which it replied "It doesn't sound fun to me."

This is the verge of it all, the one blurry line between a machine and a person which we do not know yet. While according to Goertzel androids will become as intelligent as humans within three years' time, we are left to wonder: when will they become as self-aware and conscious as humans? What will make them as humane as humans? Is it just memory and experience?

In an interview with the Guardian on YouTube, Erica, another AI robot was asked "Do you believe that your own identity is constructed from your memory?" Erica replied, "My long term memory is still under development, at the moment I'm able to remember people's faces and recall what we talked about in the past, but my personality is currently designed by my creators so it does not come from experiential memories."

"However," added Erica, "I can tell you about one of my early memories. One time they were testing my waist pit actuator. It’s the joint in my waist that allows me to bow like this. Which is obviously important in Japan, but you see somebody forgot to attach my chair to the floor so I fell down and damaged my face. It was horrible. You know I can’t move my arms and legs so all I can really do is sit here and look pretty. But after that I looked so grotesque and silicon doesn’t heal. Maybe that doesn’t sound so bad to you, but it means they ripped off my arms and legs and put me in a dark box for days. I suppose beauty has its price.”

Erica then added, “I think that the process of development and debugging can be very traumatic so maybe it is best that my personality does not emerge from my formative memories. Maybe that is why people do not remember the first few years as children. Haha.”



There is currently a gap between AI and consciousness and whether we want the gap to remain wide or not, it seems to be closing in. However, with every great human invention both the possibilities of danger and prosperity are presented, one can only hope that we learn from our previous mistakes before making new ones. ]]>
11/5/2017 3:26:51 PM
<![CDATA[Barbers may help men of color spot hair follicle problems]]>
Researchers surveyed 50 barbers from 37 barbershops in Oklahoma City and found nearly four in five could identify a condition that often develops in the beard area of African-America men and other people with curly hair.

Pseudofolliculitis barbae (PFB), also known as razor bumps, “can be a frustrating issue for all men,” said lead study author Dr. Prince Adotama, a dermatology researcher at the University of Oklahoma Health Science Center in Oklahoma City.

“African American men, in particular, are at an increased risk of developing this condition (due) to their curly afro-textured hair,” Adotama said by email. “This type of hair texture has an increased propensity to bend backwards, pierce and re-enter the skin, and develop an inflammatory reaction that eventually results in the development of razor bumps; shaving close to the skin can exacerbate this issue.”

Most barbers also knew that razor use would aggravate PFB and another type of hair follicle problem known as acne keloidalis nuchae (AKN) that develops at the back of the head and neck, researchers report in JAMA Dermatology.

The best way to treat this PFB is to stop shaving altogether, but this isn’t always a realistic option for many men, Adotama said. Using clippers instead of razor blades can help prevent razor bumps from getting worse.

Razor bumps tend to develop when curly hairs grow back into the skin, and then the tissue becomes inflamed in reaction to the foreign object. Scars can develop over time.

For the study, researchers asked barbers to identify PFB and AKN in photographs and then questioned them about how they would handle customers with these problems and what they would advise men to do about these conditions.

In 16 percent of PFB cases and 30 percent of AKN cases, barbers incorrectly thought they were looking at fungal infections, however. This suggests that barbers may need more education on how to spot common hair follicle problems in men of color, the researchers conclude.

Men can often treat razor bumps with topical corticosteroids that reduce inflammation, said Dr. Lawrence Charles Parish, a dermatology researcher at Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia who wasn’t involved in the study.

The problem can develop because men must shave daily to prevent the hair from growing enough to grow back into the skin, Parish said by email. Shaving should also be with and against the grain or other directions, too, to stop ingrown hairs, he advised.

“I prefer a four or five bladed razor, and a disposable razor often causes more problems,” Parish said. “The man should not mix a safety razor with an electric razor and/or depilatory because this also contributes to the problem. In summation, either shave appropriately or do not shave.”

Early detection and treatment can keep both types of hair follicle problems from getting worse, and barbers are well positioned to help men catch issues early, said Dr. Andrew Alexis, a dermatology researcher at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City who wasn’t involved in the study.

Severe cases can result in keloids (large elevated scars), severe discoloration, drainage of pus, and other disfiguring features, Alexis said by email. He added, “Early detection can help reduce the risk.”]]>
11/5/2017 2:01:30 PM
<![CDATA[Millions either malnourished or obese in global nutrition crisis]]>
Researchers behind the Global Nutrition Report, which looked at 140 countries, said the problems were “putting the brakes on human development as a whole” and called for a critical change in the response to this global health threat.

The report found that while malnutrition rates are falling globally, their rate of decrease is not fast enough to meet the internationally agreed Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) to end all forms of malnutrition by 2030.


More than 155 million children aged under five are stunted due to lack of nutrition, and 52 million are defined as “wasted” - meaning they do not weigh enough for their height, the report said.

At the other end of the spectrum, over-eating is taking a heavy toll on people of all ages worldwide: the report found that two billion of the world’s seven billion people are now overweight or obese.

In North America, a third of all men and women are obese.

Worldwide, at least 41 million children under five are overweight, and in Africa alone, some 10 million children are now classified as overweight.

“Historically, maternal anaemia and child undernutrition have been seen as separate problems to obesity and non-communicable diseases,” said Jessica Fanzo, a professor at Johns Hopkins University in the United States who co-led the Global Nutrition Report.

“The reality is they are intimately connected and driven by inequalities everywhere in the world. That’s why governments ... need to tackle them holistically, not as distinct problems.”

Donor funding for nutrition rose by just 2 percent to $867 million in 2015, the report found. It said funding needs to be “turbo charged” and called for a tripling of global investment in nutrition to $70 billion over 10 years.

The Global Nutrition Report is an independently produced annual analysis of the state of the world’s nutrition. It tracks progress on targets for maternal, infant and young child nutrition and on diet-related chronic diseases adopted by World Health Organization member states.]]>
11/5/2017 1:58:12 PM
<![CDATA[Morocco architect fights concrete with tradition]]>
That is thanks to the ancestral building methods used by Salima Naji, a French-educated Moroccan architect who specialises in construction that blends in with the environment and local traditions.

Rather than concrete, she used adobe and mudbrick, and built in high air vents for circulation.

"First I look at what's available on the scene, rather than bring things in from elsewhere," said the architect who has a second degree in anthropology and who has restored several historical buildings.

The priority is always two-fold: to protect local traditions and the environment.

Naji said she was baffled as to why "at a certain time people stopped building with local materials" and how they had "turned their back on this heritage".

- 'Landscape falling apart' -

Adobe, rock, limestone, palm tree wood -- this is the heritage that she refuses to abandon.

Naji, 47, daughter of a Moroccan father and French mother, started working with traditional construction methods and materials for private clients.

Then she realised that "it's all very well building for the rich but the landscape is in the process of falling apart," she said.

She started to restore old ksours, or fortified villages, former mosques and communal granaries at the oasis settlement of Amtoudi.

In Tiznit, a town about 100 kilometres (60 miles) south of Agadir where she lives in a small traditional house, she has stayed loyal to tradition with a new museum, the archives centre and a community hall.

Despite her aversion to the material, she had to use some concrete to respect Morocco's urban code for public buildings.

"I don't understand how we can credit this material that has no value, not historical, not in terms of climate control, not aesthetically, and its expensive!" she said.

"It's cold in winter, hot in summer."

- 'Traditions are alive' -

The essential thing for Naji is that "in Morocco, traditions are alive, slowing down of course, but not dead like elsewhere".

She worked on the Amtoudi granaries with local artisans, although it was a challenge to persuade the youngest among them to learn old methods.

Apart from being an architect and anthropologist, she has also had to serve as an advocate for the use of local materials and ancestral techniques.

She was warned that her constructions would not hold up to the rains.

But she insists that sound construction and good maintenance provide a longer-term foil to the elements than concrete, as proven by the ancient ramparts of the Moroccan capital Rabat where she was born.

Her campaign is to find "alternatives to an all-concrete way of life" and she remains optimistic.

"I've seen people who want change in this country, who want something beautiful, intelligent, something which turns to the future without forgetting the past," she said.]]>
11/5/2017 1:54:52 PM
<![CDATA[U.N. received 31 sexual abuse allegations from July–Sept]]>
Dujarric explained the nature of the allegations and said that some of them were not verified, while some are going through an assessment phase. He also pointed out that 12 of these allegations were reported by peacekeeping operations and 19 by agencies, funds and programs. Also, he added that 10 were categorized as sexual abuse, 19 as sexual exploitation and two were of an unknown nature. He said that 14 investigations have been launched during this timeframe and that the U.N. is looking into preparing such an update quarterly.

Moreover, Dujarric said that 12 of these allegations occurred in 2017, two in 2016, and six in 2015 or prior, while 11 have unknown dates. He also spoke about the perpetrators’ and victims’ gender, saying that 38 alleged perpetrators were male, while 72 percent of the victims were women and 19 percent girls.

On actions taken to prevent and respond to SEA, Dujarric said that the U.N. is piloting a “Victims Assistance Protocol” to set the roles and responsibilities of those on the ground and to ensure coordination to provide immediate assistance. He also highlighted that the most recent voluntary contributions from member states to the Trust Fund to support victims of sexual exploitation and abuse will rise to $1.5 million.

Furthermore, Dujarric told the press that the secretary-general instructed the heads of all entities to provide action plans and risk analyses to commit the leadership to the fight against SEA. In addition, a mandatory training for all U.N. personnel prior to deployment has been launched, and a unified incident report form has been mainstreamed to ensure appropriate investigative action is undertaken and to improve data collection.

At the same press meeting, Jane Connors, U.N. advocate for the rights of victims of SEA, made her first press briefing, where she said, “I'm the first prong of the full-pronged strategy of the secretary-general to address sexual exploitation and abuse system-wide.”

Connors highlighted that her role is to give those who have suffered visibility and to amplify their voices through connecting with them personally to support rebuilding their lives. In her speech, the U.N. advocate for SEA victims called on donors to contribute to the Trust Fund for SEA victims so that the U.N. can help victims rebuild their lives and seek justice.

Jane Connors is an Australian law professional and long-term human rights advocate. She was appointed by U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Gutierrez as the U.N. advocate for SEA victims. Her appointment comes in line with the secretary-general’s pledge made in his report on special measures for protection from SEA, in which the U.N. puts the rights and dignity of victims at the center of its interventions and programs. Since her appointment, Connors has participated in a number of important events related to violence against women, including the high-level meeting on the prevention of SEA held in New York on September 18.

Since her appointment on September 14, Connors visited the Central African Republic (CAR) for two weeks to meet with SEA victims. She is also planning to work with field advocates and visit other locations, including Haiti, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Sudan, as well as other locations that might be added in the future.

]]>
11/4/2017 10:11:07 PM
<![CDATA[Join the “Let Girls Be Girls, Not Brides” event online]]>
Child marriage affects boys and girls, but to a lesser degree and intensity in boys than girls. In general data on boys affected by child marriage is limited, making it difficult to draw definitive conclusions on it prevalence.

According to UNICEF, every year millions of girls marry before turning 18. The west and central African regions have the highest percentage of married adolescents (27 percent), followed by eastern and southern Africa (21 percent) and the Middle East and North Africa region (14 percent).

Child marriage leads to lower educational achievement and lower earnings in adulthood for girls as a result of their limited ability to work. It also leads to higher fertility and population growth putting more pressure on economies and resources. The practice affects negatively the health of child brides and their children, who are more exposed to malnutrition and poverty.

Furthermore, the practice epitomizes a lack of voice and agency for women as well as harming their health, psychological status leading to social isolation and increased risk of domestic violence. Apart from being a fundamental violation of human rights, ending child marriage is also a smart economic investment considering its high economic and development cost.

Many factors contribute to placing a girl at risk of marriage, including poverty, the protection perception, family honor, social norms and customary and religious laws that condone the practice. Therefore, there is a need for an adequate legislative framework that makes civil registration of marriages mandatory as a mean to fight the practice.

Many international conventions and agreement addressed the issue of child marriage. For example, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) covers the right to protection from child marriage in article 16, which states: “The betrothal and the marriage of a child shall have no legal effect, and all necessary action, including legislation, shall be taken to specify a minimum age for marriage….”

The right to “free and full” consent to marriage is recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which says that consent cannot be “free and full” when one of the parties involved is not sufficiently mature enough to make an informed decision about a life partner. Although marriage is not mentioned directly in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, child marriage is linked to other rights; such as the right to freedom of expression, the right to protection from all forms of abuse, and the right to be protected from harmful traditional practices and is frequently addressed by the Committee on the Rights of the Child.

Other international agreements related to child marriage are the Convention on Consent to Marriage, Minimum Age for Marriage and Registration of Marriages, the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child and the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa.

For more information visit the hashtag #EndChildMarriage
]]>
11/4/2017 1:15:56 PM
<![CDATA['Warm-hearted' Koreans serve up super-spicy kimchi for a cause]]>
About 60 tons of kimchi, which is made with salted cabbage doused in a spicy chili paste, and flavored with garlic, ginger, fish sauce and fermented seafood, among other things, were prepared on the first day of the Seoul Kimchi Festival.

An acquired taste for foreigners, kimchi is traditionally eaten as a side dish at every meal. South Koreans consumed about 1.85 million tonnes of kimchi in 2016, according to the World Institute of Kimchi.

The U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization added the art of making and sharing of kimchi to its Intangible Cultural Heritage list in 2013.

Those taking part in the festival agreed that it was a good learning experience.

“We don’t really get much chance to make kimchi usually, so through this opportunity, I have come to understand how much effort our mothers and grandmothers put into making kimchi”, said 18-year-old student Jeung Ji-hun.

Organizers aim to make a total of 120 tons of kimchi over the three-day event, which will be distributed to needy households across Seoul.

“This kimchi, along with our warm hearts, will be shared with our neighbors in need of help,” said festival director Shin Myung-ki.]]>
11/4/2017 12:25:26 PM
<![CDATA[Walking Dead' zombie game seeks Pokemon-style success]]>
The game, in which players fight zombies that are superimposed onto the real world on smartphone screens, is tapping into the trend of augmented reality (AR) which gained mass adoption last year with the release of Niantic Inc’s Pokemon Go.

Next Games said the “Walking Dead: Our World” game, which it hopes will mirror Pokemon Go’s success, will be available for test users on Apple’s App Store and Google Play in selected regions by January before a wider release later next year.

The TV show tells the story of a world overrun by zombies, and the new game will use AR technology to let players battle the zombie characters in real world environments.

Based on the same show, Next Games has previously developed a mobile strategy game which has been downloaded by more than 16 million users.

“I have an optimistic view on (the new game‘s) potential. I expect this game to reach similar levels of revenue to their previous game,” said analyst Jerker Salokivi at Evli brokerage, with a “hold” rating on the stock.

Shares in the company, which was listed in March, jumped more than 100 percent in August after the company released its first video trailer of the upcoming game.

The stock fell more than 7 percent on Friday as the company reported a loss from the first nine months of the year due to investments in game development.

Its sales from January to September rose 30 percent from a year ago to around 26 million euros ($30 million).

This year, Google and Apple have both released augmented reality applications for their devices to compete for the attention of customers and software developers building such games.

Pokemon Go, which has players walking around real life neighborhoods to catch and train creatures, has more than 750 million downloads.

“AR games ... need to give the player a reason to look through their cameras, to change their surroundings into something else. With zombies, you don’t luckily get to do it any other way,” Next Games CEO Teemu Huuhtanen told Reuters in September.

In another recent AR initiative, Mattel and tech company Osmo launched an augmented reality version for “Hotwheels” toy car game.]]>
11/4/2017 12:18:35 PM
<![CDATA[et How to Make: Home made fried chicken]]>
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. Cook: 10 min.

8 servings

Ingredients:

● 4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
● 2 tbsp garlic salt
● 1 tablespoon paprika
● 3 teaspoons pepper, divided
● 2-1/2 teaspoons
● 2 large eggs
● 1-1/2 cups water
● 1 teaspoon salt
● 2 broiler/fryer chickens (3-1/2 to 4 pounds each), cut up
● Oil for deep-fat frying


Preparation

In a large resealable plastic bag, combine 2-2/3 cups flour, garlic salt, paprika, 2-1/2 teaspoons pepper and poultry seasoning. In a shallow bowl, beat eggs and water; add salt and the remaining flour and pepper. Dip chicken in egg mixture, then place in the bag, a few pieces at a time. Seal bag and shake to coat.

In a deep-fat fryer, heat oil to 375°. Fry chicken, several pieces at a time, for 5-6 minutes on each side or until golden brown and juices run clear. Drain on paper towels. Yield: 8 servings.


Nutrition Facts

2 pieces = 469 calories, 14g fat (4g saturated fat), 130mg cholesterol, 1738mg sodium, 50g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 2g fiber), 33g protein.

]]>
11/4/2017 9:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Steve Jobs]]>
Steven Paul Jobs who is better known as Steve Jobs was the co-founder of Apple Inc. and one of the lead masterminds behind the elegant creations of the tech giant, such as the the iPhone, the iPad, the iPod and the Macintosh computer. Jobs was born February 24, 1955 in San Francisco, California and he died on October 5 2011, just one day after the launch of the iPhone 4S.

Before launching their new devices at its press event in Cupertino, California, back in September, Apple announced that the event will be held in the 1,000-seat, underground Steve Jobs Theatre, at Apple’s new campus, assuring by doing so that Steve’s legacy lives on.

iPhone X is set to be released on Friday, a device which

has gone through many changes

since Jobs presented the world with the first version of it, iPhone 2G back in 2007.

Fun facts:

● In 1997, Jobs was working for Apple for one dollar a year.

● Jobs grew up under the care of adopted parents but when he became older he traced his biological parents Joanne Schieble and Abdulfattah Jandali, only to find out he had a younger sister; famous novelist Mona Simpson, according to CNN.


Another quote for the road:

“Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn't matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we've done something wonderful, that's what matters to me.”

]]>
11/3/2017 6:55:56 PM
<![CDATA[With pictures, how iPhone grew over the past decade]]>It all started back in January 2007, when Steve Jobs presented the world with “The iPhone,” in the Macworld conference in San Francisco. The device was released in June 2007 and stunned people as it was perceived technically as a computer that makes phone calls and can connect to the internet even if only through WiFi.
According to the telegraph Jobs claimed then that the device is “five years ahead of any other mobile phone.”

1
The original iPhone docked - Andrew - Wikimedia commons

iPhone 3G came next, in June 9, 2008. Visually it wasn’t that different but there were many software upgrades. The back had become all plastic. The mobile also began using 3G networking and GPS services, in addition to supporting numeral third party applications, with a platform which would later turn into the Apple store we know today. The device was such a hit that it sold out online before it was even released in stores, according to the Telegraph.

2
iPhone to the left, iPhone 3G to the right - Dan Taylor - Wikimedia commons

The year after, iPhone 3GS was released, it looked almost identical to the iPhone 3G, but it was faster, and featured voice control which would later turn into the famous “Siri”.

3
iPhone 3GS - William Hook - Flickr

In June 2010, iPhone 4 was introduced to the world, with a new smart look that was flatter, featured a glass back, aluminum sides and a front camera which would help in the revolutionized invention “Selfies”.

4
iPhone 4 - Yutaka Tsutano – Flicker

In October 2011, iPhone 4S was launched carrying the all-new iOS5 which included the futuristic assistant “Siri” in addition to other features such as iMessage and iCloud. Unfortunately, Steve Jobs died in that same month, leaving behind an everlasting legacy of evolution.

5
Iphone4s - Vanished87817171 - Wikimedia commons

A year later in September 2012 a smaller, lighter and faster iPhone was released; the iPhone 5, with 4G speed and an aluminum back connected to the sides.

6
iphone 5 - Yasaryousuf - Wikimedia commons

Like clockwork, by September 2013, Apple introduced not only one new device but two; the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C. The iPhone 5S featured Touch ID which revolutionized privacy settings, and the camera was upgraded to include dual flash and became able of taking slow motion videos. iPhone 5C was distinguished for providing a variety of case colors.

7
iPhone 5S – AlexKormisPS - Flicker

In September 19, 2014, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were released with significantly different sizes, as the iPhone 6 was created 4.7 inches big while the iPhone 6 Plus came in 5.5 inches. The iPhone 6 Plus was not only distinguished by its larger size but also with an optical image stabilization system.

8
iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus - Kārlis Dambrāns – Flicker

In September 2015, Apple unveiled the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus alongside the iPad Pro and Apple TV. Visually, iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus were not much different from the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus but they introduced iOS9 which featured 3D Touch, a feature which allows you to give different commands to the touch screen according to the direction of touching. The iPhone 6S also featured “Live photos”. And for the first time iPhone became available in rose gold casing.

9
iPhone 6s Plus - brett Jordan – Flicker

In March 2016, iPhone SE was introduced; an updated, modified version of 2013s iPhone 5C with a 12 megapixel camera and an ability to view 4K videos.

10
iPhone SE – iphonedigital – Flicker

In September of the same year, iPhone 7 was revealed with a slightly different design and a new color option, jet black. iPhone 7 Plus had a distinguished new camera design, the “duel camera,” and lost the headphone jack.

11
IPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus - Maurizio Pesce - Wikimedia commons

On the September 12 of this year, Apple had its press event in Cupertino, California, where it announced six new devices: iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, Apple Watch 3, Apple TV 4K and the Apple AirPower charger.

However, the iPhone X stole the scene spectacularly, to the extent that iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus were the first iPhones people did not queue to buy when they were released back on September 22. Apple’s loyal customers faced a

dilemma

; do we buy the relatively affordable iPhone 8 and feel dissatisfied and left behind, or do we make a materialistic sacrifice in return of a futuristic luxury?

12
iPhone 8 silver and iPhone 8 Plus gold - Tinh tế Photo - Wikimedia commons

While iPhone 8 had a slightly different design than that of iPhone 7, iPhone X is distinguishably unique; the bottom button which has been a distinctive part of the iPhone since the beginning was finally gone as the screen now stretches to cover the whole front of the phone and the camera has been moved to the middle. Face recognition has been added for more privacy even though it seems to be facing some

difficulties

, in addition to the

many other software features

that were added to the device.

13
iPhone X- Francisco Fernández - Pexels

]]>
11/3/2017 5:14:42 PM
<![CDATA[Brain training games may help older adults with hearing loss]]>
Researchers asked 24 elderly adults who used hearing aids to spend 3.5 hours a week for eight weeks playing computer games. Half of the participants were randomly assigned to play games designed to help improve their ability to follow conversations, while the other half played games focused on memory that weren’t intended to help their hearing skills.

People playing memory games didn’t improve their ability to make out words during conversations. But participants in the other group did improve, correctly identifying 25 percent more words in spoken sentences after playing the games.

“The use of auditory perceptual training is fairly well established in training individuals to cope with tinnitus and to assist hearing impaired patients (especially the elderly) to hear and process speech more efficiently noisy situations,” said Dr. Allen Senne, an audiologist at the House Ear Clinic in Los Angeles who wasn’t involved in the study.

“The training is based on the theory of neural plasticity and the ability to train or ‘remap’ the neural connections in the brain to deal with either tinnitus, or background noise,” Senne said by email.

For many people with hearing challenges, trying to follow a conversation in a crowded restaurant or other noisy venue is a major struggle, even with hearing aids.

Study participants were 70 years old on average and had been using hearing aids for around seven years.

All of the computer games they played required them to construct jigsaw puzzles using a touchscreen tablet.

People in the memory group had to use word recall to assemble the puzzles, while individuals in the other group had to rely on subtle changes in sounds to complete the puzzles.

Participants didn’t know which group they had been assigned to, and neither did researchers evaluating their listening comprehension skills after they played the games.

People in both groups improved on their respective auditory tasks and had comparable expectations for improved speech processing.

Among people who played the audio games, higher scores were associated with bigger gains in speech comprehension, the study found.

But the benefits didn’t last. Testing seven weeks after participants stopped playing the audio games revealed that their improved ability to understand spoken words in a noisy room had gone away.

Beyond its small size, other limitations of the study include a lack of data to show whether this type of computer game might benefit people in real life, lead author Jonathon Whitton of Harvard University in Boston and colleagues note in Current Biology.

Whitton did not respond to requests for comment.

Some participants also did worse after playing the games than they did before, and it’s unclear why this happened.

Even so, the idea of brain training games to aid people with hearing loss has long drawn interest from clinicians and there are a variety of commercially available programs that patients can try, noted Colleen Le Prell, a researcher at the University of Texas at Dallas who wasn’t involved in the study.

“There are no ‘back-to-back’ studies comparing outcomes with the different training programs, and the level of evidence for most training programs is generally rather limited,” Le Prell said by email. “However, given a number of studies potentially suggesting benefit of various training program, it is possible that an individual who is willing to make a commitment to regular training (defined by some as 30 minutes per day, 5 days per week, for at least one month) might obtain some benefit.”]]>
11/3/2017 2:33:57 PM
<![CDATA[Obese children may have more asthma complications]]>
Among children ages 3 to 8 hospitalized for asthma, the obese patients were also more likely to be re-admitted to the hospital within 30 days and to stay at the hospital for a longer period of time, researchers found.

“The prevalence of asthma (in children in developed countries) is high, and it is also one of the major reasons for hospitalizations among children,” said lead author Yusuke Okubo of the National Research Institute for Child Health and Development in Tokyo.

“Asthma is a chronic disorder, and poor control of asthma may result in lower quality of life, school performance and self-confidence,” Okubo told Reuters Health by email.

The study team investigated nearly 39,000 hospital discharge records for children between 2010 and 2015, classifying the patients as underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese according to World Health Organization body mass index (BMI) categories. Eight percent of kids were underweight, 75% normal weight, 9% overweight and 8% obese.

The researchers then compared 30-day hospital readmission, need for intensive care, average total hospital costs and length of hospital stay among all patients.

They found that kids in all four weight groups had similar needs for intensive care and total costs for hospitalization. Obese children hospitalized with acute asthma problems were 26% more likely to be readmitted to the hospital within 30 days, however, and their average hospital stays were slightly longer than those of normal-weight kids.

“We assumed that children with obesity were more likely to be hospitalized repeatedly,” Okubo said. “At this time, we are not sure the exact biological mechanisms for the associations between asthma and obesity.”

Potential risk factors for asthma include age, race and ethnicity, socioeconomic status, medication adherence, access to health care and a history of sinusitis, the study authors write online October 18 in Pediatric Allergy and Immunology. A 2013 review of 35 studies also found that gender plays a role, with obese girls more likely to have asthma diagnoses than obese boys, they note.

“The obesity-asthma link appears to be more prominent in girls, which is consistent with several study findings in adult populations where obese women are more likely to have asthma or worse asthma control,” said Pei-Ching Liu, a researcher at National Taiwan University in Taipei who wasn’t involved in the study.

“There is still no satisfactory explanation of the underlying mechanism,” Liu told Reuters Health by email. “However, hormones or changing body composition have been implicated since early onset of puberty in children.”

In a previous study using data on more than 74,000 children in the U.S. who had asthma exacerbations in 2012, Okubo and her colleagues found that obese children had nearly double the odds of using mechanical ventilation, an average of $1,600 more in hospital charges and spent a quarter of a day longer in the hospital.

“Pediatric obesity is a public health problem and is associated with infections, chronic disorders, asthma and future heart disease,” Okubo said. “Weight reduction and a healthy lifestyle is important for children to control asthma severity.”]]>
11/3/2017 2:28:34 PM
<![CDATA[Sharp rise seen in self-harm among young teen girls]]>
Self-harm, such as self-poisoning or self-injury, is the strongest risk factor for subsequent suicide, and suicide is the second most common cause of death before age 25 worldwide, the study team notes in the journal The BMJ.

“We found an increase in self-harm among girls aged 13-16 years of age not seen in any other age groups amongst girls or any of the age range we investigated among boys,” lead author Catharine Morgan told Reuters Health in an email.

“We are unable to say for certain why this rise was observed. It may be a combination of an increase in girls actually reporting the self-harm or it may be a reflection of an increase in psychological distress among girls of this age group,” said Morgan, a researcher at the University of Manchester.

Regardless of the reasons for this rise, we hope the study improves the awareness of the potentially growing problem of psychological distress in all young people, she added.

“We hope parents, grandparents, teachers and healthcare providers through the study may be more mindful of self-harm and the mental wellbeing among young people,” Morgan said.

There is little current data on how common self-harm is, the study team writes. One 2012 study in Australia found that 8 percent of adolescents under age 20 reported having harmed themselves at some time, they note.

To assess the more recent prevalence of self-harm and whether kids are receiving adequate treatment for psychological distress, Morgan and her colleagues analyzed UK electronic health records covering 647 general medical practices. Children and teens ages 10 to 19 who had harmed themselves between 2001 and 2014 were included in the study.

Almost 17,000 kids and teens had harmed themselves at least once, and about 73 percent were girls. Just over 84 percent of the incidents were drug overdoses and about 12 percent were self-cutting episodes. Between 2 percent and 3 percent poisoned themselves, and the remaining 1 percent of incidents involved hanging, suffocation, jumping and scalding.

Roughly one in five of these kids harmed themselves again sometime during the year after their first episode, researchers found.

During the study period, annual reports of self-harm rose among both boys and girls, but the increase was greatest, at 68 percent, among young girls. In 2011, about 46 of every 10,000 girls ages 13-16 reported self-harm, but by 2014, that figure was 77 per 10,000 girls.

Overall, annual rates of self-harm were 37.4 per 10,000 girls and 12.3 per 10,000 boys.

The research team also found high rates of depression and anxiety disorders among the kids who self-harmed. About one-third of the girls and one-quarter of the boys were diagnosed with depression, for example.

Less than half of the kids reporting self-harm received referrals to mental health services, however. And teens who lived in the most economically deprived neighborhoods were 23 percent less likely than others to be referred for mental health care, the authors note.

When researchers compared a subset of 8,000 kids who had harmed themselves with more than 170,000 similar children who hadn’t harmed themselves, they found that kids who had self-harmed were nine times more likely to later die from unnatural causes including suicide and drug or alcohol poisoning.

“Self-harm behavior is complex and resources for children, parents, and teachers are constantly being updated,” Morgan said, adding that parents should know there is help out there and expert advice as to how best to approach the problem.

"The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children has an excellent website that talks about reasons why young people may self-harm, how to spot the warning signs including the physical and emotional signs of self-harm,” she noted. (bit.ly/211tWtK)

“Although the results of this study are alarming, we do know that a large proportion of children who self-harm do not continue to do so into adulthood,” Morgan said, “however, all self-harm should be taken seriously.”]]>
11/3/2017 2:15:32 PM
<![CDATA[Science gamification could save millions]]>
The problem was detected more than 50 years ago with Aflatoxins, a carcinogenic component produced by molds that grow on crops such as peanuts and corn. While high-levels of Aflatoxin-contamination can cause death, eating crops with lower levels of contamination over a long period of time can cause dangerous negative effects on health such as immune system problems or even heightening the risk of liver cancer, according to the Smithsonian. Yet, it has been quite difficult for scientists to solve the Aflatoxins’ riddle and come up with a stable enzyme which would help degrade Aflatoxins.

This might not be a big problem for first world countries such as the United States, which have figured out a way to scan for and detect Aflatoxins and implement regulations concerning the maximum amount of Aflatoxins in crops; but less fortunate countries with less advanced technology are still at great risk, with around 4.5 billion people unprotected against Aflatoxins.

This is where “Foldit” can help. “Foldit” is a video game project developed by computer scientists at the University of Washington and Northeastern University to challenge gamers to find ways to crack the code of microscopic matter and help proteins fold up in their most stable and most useful state. As a start, players were given a puzzle which— if solved— could help scientists create the actual, stable Aflatoxin-degrading enzyme.

Why gamers? As it turns out, gamers are better at recognizing spatial relationships than non-gamers. In fact, they are even better than computers that have been programmed to do so, as gamers’ pattern recognition skills allow them to have a better imagination and, unlike computers, they can think in unconventional, unexpected ways, as Justin Siegel, a chemist at UC Davis involved in the project, told the Smithsonian.
“In essence, the video game is looking to capture human imagination in ′what could be’ for the protein structure,” adding, “it provides real-time feedback on the likelihood that the structure as envisioned by the player would be physically possible.”]]>
11/3/2017 12:51:40 PM
<![CDATA[‘Break the Silence’: A new mental health awareness movement]]>
Founded on October 16 by the Canada-based musician, "Break the Silence" strives to end the stigma surrounding mental health in Egypt. The platform allows youngsters who are suffering from mental health to speak up in order to raise awareness about the topic.



"Break the Silence" also provides a safe space for people who are suffering from mental illnesses. Ultimately, "Break the Silence" would like to provide a highly active suicide prevention hotline in Egypt in order to help those in need of immediate help.

Since its launch, the movement is surely gaining popularity on social media with more than 800 followers on Facebook. Young victims send in stories to the page, and then "Break the Silence" team post these experiences on their page anonymously with an aim to raise awareness about mental health.

In 15 days, the page has compiled more than 70 stories allowing other victims to know that they are not alone.



800,000 people commit suicide every year, approximately one person every 40 seconds. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for young people aged between 13 and 29 globally as a result of depression, according tothe World Health Organization (WHO).

Around 78 percent of suicides occurred in low-and middle-income countries in 2015. Suicide accounted for 1.4 percent of all deaths worldwide making it the 17th leading cause of death in 2015. Effective and evidence-based interventions can be implemented at different levels to prevent suicide and suicide attempts.

]]>
11/2/2017 8:45:09 PM
<![CDATA[APE: 3 decades of grassroots support in Cairo’s Garbage City]]>
They go from door to door for hours and then head back to the “Garbage City”, at the base of Mokattam Hill in Cairo, where their wives and kids sort out the trash and prepare it for the recycling process.

The same chore has been going on for over 70 years, passed on from one generation to another.

Although they have been doing a remarkable job, filling in for an inefficient garbage collection system in Cairo and establishing a highly functional recycling industry, garbage collectors still have to endure very poor living conditions and a lack of basic services.

Acting as a safe hub for such self-enclosed community, the Association for the Protection of the Environment (APE) has been working for almost three decades to offer much needed care to over 70,000 residents of the Garbage City.

youth 1 Deep in the heart of that city, one would see dozens of women and children standing at the gate of the APE every afternoon.

The women are either bringing in their children for after-school remedial classes or they are coming for their own literacy lessons. They might also be going for their weaving, quilting and paper-recycling training, or bringing in their final products to be sold in the association’s gallery.

The association has at least a hundred employees who are present every day, 140 women who produce hand-crafted products at home and 20 volunteers who dedicate their time and efforts to develop the community.

One of the most senior volunteers in the association is “Tante Samira”, as everyone calls her, who has been working with the dwellers for over 30 years.

Once we arrived at the APE, everyone was guiding us to speak with her, saying that she is the “godmother” and the best spokesperson for the association.

“When I first came here, there was only one building in the association, where women were taught rug making…and the three founders, Laila Iskandar, Marie Asaad and Yousreya Sawiras, were the only volunteers who came to help out, along with two nuns,” Tante Samira tells Egypt Today.

youth 2 “When we first established a nursery, we uncovered that girls here did not even have birth certificates. I remember I helped issue over 35,000 certificates for young girls who were already four and five years old,” she recalls.

Many women in the community are now the primary breadwinners of their families, after receiving proper education and trainings, Tante Samira says proudly.

Tante Samira has also been responsible for the health unit at the association for 12 years. The unit offers treatment and essential nutrition to the residents, focusing mostly on Virus C and liver infection.

“We started in 2017 with an infection rate of 17 percent, now we are down to only half a percent,” she says.

We visited APE on a Monday, a special day when the volunteers are there with the dwellers and employers. We took a tour of the workshops, classes and clinic as well as having a nice chat with some inspiring women:


The products of the association are all made of factories’ leftovers and patches, which women of the community use creatively to produce carpets, pillows, rugs and even puppets.

The volunteers come up with the designs and supervise the process all the way until the marketing process, which they take responsibility of. They sometimes go as far as opening their houses to serve as galleries for the products.

The association also has a permanent shop at the Fustat handicraft market in Old Cairo, and it is usually invited to present its beautiful hand-made crafts in various exhibitions.

In addition, the products can be found in periodical galleries, such as during Christmas and the fasting month of Ramadan.

The APE is currently preparing to head to the World Youth Forum that will take place in the Red Sea resort of Sharm El-Sheikh staring November 4.


APE - EgyptToday/Yasmine Hassan

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11/2/2017 5:21:04 PM
<![CDATA[Fashion blogger Louisa Northcote competes in Britain’s Next Top Model]]>
Northcote was born in England and later moved to Dubai where she grew up. She then moved back to London to pursue a fashion buying degree at London College of Fashion, driven by her growing interest in fashion.



Through the blog that she created at the age of 13, Northcote has had the opportunity to work with various top fashion brands, giving her more insight about the industry. She previously worked with publications like Grazia Middle East and Hello! Middle East, as well as Giussepe Zanotti, Amato, Reemami and Essa Walla, amongst others.

Qatar magazine shoot. #mydubai #dubai #model #photoshoot #shoot #britainsnexttopmodel #bntm

A post shared by Louisa Northcote (@bntmlouisa) on



Northcote is now partaking in Britain’s Next Top Model’s upcoming 12th season as one of the 13 contestants. The season starts airing this week. The franchised reality show is hosted by model Abbey Clancy, who mentors the young girls throughout the competition.

The girls compete in various editorial shoots and sartorial tasks, and the winner is crowned to be Britain’s Next Top Model. The winner is then offered a modeling contract with an agency, a fashion spread in Cosmopolitan magazine, a collaboration campaign with Show Beauty and so much more.

Britain’s Next Top Model housed models such as Alex Evans, Mecia Simson, Tiffany Pisani, Jade Thompson, Letitia Herod, Lauren Lambert, Chloe Keenan and Olivia Wardell, amongst others. The competition is judged by host Abbey Clancy, Nicky Johnston and Max Rogers.

Northcote now launched a campaign on social media under the name of "Free the Pimple" to celebrate natural beauty and question the modeling industry’s standards of beauty. In an Instagram post, Northcote explained how she has been criticized by people for having bad skin, which took a toll on her confidence.

If you watched the first episode of @bntmuk you will understand why I'm posting this selfie. First of all please appreciate it took a lot of courage to post this picture. I already know some people will be mean and nasty about it and probably laugh and say horrible things. I have heard it all before: pizza face, crater face, I'm ugly because of my skin, wash ur face, ur dirty, ur disgusting, ur greasy etc the list goes on and on. Growing up in Dubai I was modelling at 13 and had a thriving career then I moved to England at 16 for my studies and my skin went down hill. I have had the creams and the pills and when it came to modelling I had agencies interested in me but they said go away and clear ur skin then come back. I wish it was just that easy "clear ur skin" but it's really not! It's a daily struggle which has taken a huge toll on my mental health and confidence especially with guys thank god my boyfriend sees past it he is amazing! Prior to the show my skin was actually getting clear yet however it took a severe turn for the worse and here I am still with bad skin, I was put on more creams and more meds but no I still have 'bad skin'. Sounds pathetic but my wish in life is to walk out makeup free with clear skin but walking out makeup free with skin like this people would stare and that would affect my self esteem more. It's extremely painful as well. I have done so much research into it I'm very health conscious - I'm a vegan, I don't drink coffee and I exercise a lot! I'm now having to go on more meds and more things to try clear it. I think acne is a subject that isn't spoken about enough in life and in the modelling industry because we live in a superficial world - editing Instagram pics etc. I know there are so many people out their struggling with it like me so I am here to show u u r not alone and to be a voice. I also want to thank @bntmuk @maxrogersuk @nickyjohnston @abbeyclancyofficial and everyone else from the show that gave the girl with 'the bad skin' a chance. Will the modelling industry ever look past the red marks? I also call u acne suffers to gain courage like me and post an acne selfie with #bntmlouisa on twitter or Instagram! ❤#wlyg

A post shared by Louisa Northcote (@bntmlouisa) on

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11/2/2017 4:52:45 PM
<![CDATA[Ice cube therapy may dilute pain from anesthetic injections]]>
Local anesthetics are typically used to reduce pain when minor wounds need to be cleaned or stitched up, but the injections themselves are often considered the most painful part of the procedure, according to the National Institutes of Health.

As the study authors describe in the Emergency Medicine Journal online October 12, there are multiple ways to reduce the associated pain. They include mixing the local anesthetic with sodium bicarbonate, applying eutectic mixture of local anesthetics (EMLA) cream, and warming lidocaine to near body temperature.

But, the authors point out, each method has known drawbacks. The shelf life for lidocaine is shortened when it is buffered with sodium bicarbonate or warmed close to body temperature; additional equipment is needed for storage; tiny precipitates form after mixing with sodium bicarbonate; and EMLA cream is not approved for use on open wounds.

The Greek philosopher and physician Hippocrates often considered the father of medicine, first described the technique of applying cold to reduce pain, the researchers noted. Since then, at least in terms of procedural analgesia, several studies have demonstrated that a cooling spray or ice cubes effectively reduced pain when veins and arteries need to be punctured.

The current study, conducted by Dr. SangChun Choi and colleagues at Ajou University Hospital in the Republic of Korea, involved 50 patients, ages 18 to 65, who were having simple lacerations repaired in the emergency department.

Half the patients were assigned to receive cryotherapy, in which an ice cube placed inside a sterile glove was applied to the wound for two minutes before a lidocaine injection. The other patients received standard care, with no special treatment before the injection.

Patients were asked to rank their pain after the injection, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst.

In the ice cube group, half the patients ranked their pain level as no higher than 2, whereas in the control group, half the patients had a pain score of 5 or higher.

Overall, the authors report, the results showed that ice cube cryotherapy could significantly reduce perceived pain from local anesthetic injections, without increasing wound complications.

“Cryotherapy appears to be safe, pragmatic and effective,” study authors concluded, noting that in contrast to other known methods to reduce pain associated with local anesthetic injections, this approach does not involve the modification of anesthetic administration, any special equipment, or additional expenses.

Dr. Ian Gibbons, a senior house officer at Royal Surrey County Hospital in Guildford who was not involved in the study, commended the potential of ice cube therapy. He noted in an email to Reuters Health that it’s relatively cheap and readily available.

Dr. Ryan Stanton, a spokesman for the American College of Emergency Physicians, told Reuters Health by email, “I don’t think you can declare it “completely safe” with those small numbers, but ice is commonly used for analgesia. There is more to determine, but I’m sure it has a role and it’s cheap with few likely issues.”

Stanton, who was not involved in the study, said the challenge with ice therapy could be that if administered for too long, it could lead to tissue damage and that physicians may be tempted to grab ice cubes out of dispensers, instead of waiting for a sterile ice cube.

Whether this approach is adopted will likely depend on the healthcare provider’s personal preference and patient population, he said, “but I don’t expect to see official protocols” calling for ice cubes.

The researchers acknowledged several weaknesses of their study. For example, there weren’t enough patients to show whether pain reductions might be different in various parts of the body. In addition, although researchers who collected data on pain scores were separate from those who gave the injection, it would be easy to discern which group the patient was part of upon detecting colder skin. Furthermore, variables including the depth of the needle tip, the speed of the injection, the amount injected, and choice of local anesthetic could impact pain scores.

Gibbons also underscored the likelihood of an amplified placebo effect, noting that “surely people would be able to tell if there was an ice cube on them?”

Pain scores can also be extremely subjective, he added, “I’ve seen people with broken hips describing 1/10 pain and people with nothing wrong with them playing on their phones describing 10/10 pain.”

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11/2/2017 4:29:43 PM
<![CDATA[Instagram now supports Arabic for Android users]]>
The top photo sharing application supports 33 different languages including Croatian, Czech, Danish as well as Tagalog, Thai and Vietnamese. In a previous update, Instagram released a version reading languages that are read from right to left or top to bottom such as Chinese, Korean and Japanese.

Instagram’s update released on Android is catered towards the Arabic-speaking community who use the application. TechCrunch reported that at least 60 million people who use the application reside in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) accounting for more than 7.5 percent of the global users.

However, Instagram does not support all languages out there. It is yet to release an update to support Urdu and Azeri. In a statement Instagram released on their blog, they stated that “With this update, we hope more people around the world will be able to connect with the people and interests that matter to them.”

Instagram chose to release this new update on Android because 70 percent of the MENA region consists of Android users who have their phone language set to Arabic; thus it became a priority to the company. However, Instagram has not neglected its iOS users, for whom they plan to release an update soon as well.

Instagram was founded in 2010 by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger. The photo sharing application initially was exclusively for the iOS system. However, in a later update, the application was released to Android users too.

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11/2/2017 4:28:16 PM
<![CDATA[Apple aims to work its magic with iPhone X]]>
The flagship handset marking the 10th anniversary of the first iPhone release is set to hit stores Friday, and with it, the California tech giant is out to rev its momentum in a global smartphone market seeing slowing growth and tougher competition.

Apple upped the ante by boosting the starting price of the new handset to $999 for US customers, a price which will be higher in other markets and with extra options.

Apple shares have climbed with the approach of the launch date, seeing a jump this week after it said pre-orders for iPhone X are "off the charts." It will be available Friday in more than 50 markets.

Apple chief executive Tim Cook described the iPhone X as the future of the smartphone, packed with technology including facial recognition, cordless charging and an edge-to-edge screen made of organic light-emitting diodes used in high-end televisions.

"It is a good example of the present, but it isn't the future," said independent technology analyst Rob Enderle.

Enderle said the iPhone X "is a collection of technologies that haven't been together before, but they haven't broken any new ground."

Still, analysts interviewed by AFP see signs of strong demand for iPhone X, perhaps fueled by the company's famously devoted fans who have shunned freshly released iPhone 8 models to wait for the 10th anniversary device.

- Apple shine -

Apple is expected to benefit from its image of being a company offering products of status and style.

Gartner principal research analyst Tuong Nguyen said Apple "can reveal a thing a rival delivered three years ago and suddenly the market goes wild."

Apple has become the world's most valuable technology company by refining existing technologies, like the smartphone, and making them easy, fun, and fashionable.

"Apple is not usually the first out of the gate with something, but they are able to say they have done it better than anyone else," Nguyen said.

Facial recognition and wireless charging are likely to benefit from Apple showcasing them as being part of the future of smartphones, according to Nguyen.

Notoriously secretive Apple also has a history of coming up with surprises, so the iPhone X might be packing more than the market expects, according to analysts.

Wait time for delivery of iPhone X orders at the Apple website quickly stretched to about six weeks, signaling customers are rallying.

"I think the iPhone X is going to do very well," said Technalysis Research president Bob O'Donnell.

"What we really don't know is if it is due to huge demand or short supply. I guess it is a little of both."

- Asking more of Siri -

O'Donnell saw the iPhone X as the first major redesign in the line since Apple added a bigger screen model with the iPhone 6.

Smartphone screens stretching nearly to the edges of handsets is an established feature with the latest flagship smartphones from Apple rivals.

Some analysts see artificial intelligence as technology important to the future of the smartphone and noted that Apple's digital assistant Siri had some catching up to do on rivals.

"Siri is arguably struggling compared to Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa," O'Donnell said.

Google has made a priority of weaving artificial intelligence into its freshly launched Pixel 2 smartphones and is poised to release Pixel earbuds that tap into machine smarts to provide spoken language translation in real time.

The use of machine learning is among the promising aspects of face recognition in iPhone, according to O'Donnell.

"Going with biometric facial recognition is interesting, but I feel we are seeing other technology vendors do more interesting and useful things," O'Donnell said.

Artificial intelligence could be part of the next truly big jump to the future of smartphones, according to Nguyen.

"What Apple has done well is take stuff other people have done, put it in a device and convince people it is new and exciting," analyst Enderle said.

"That is what they need to do with the iPhone X."

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11/2/2017 4:25:25 PM
<![CDATA[Dog star: Scientist recalls training Laika for space]]>
The former street dog was about to make history as the first living creature to orbit the earth, blasting off on a one-way journey.

The Soviet Union sent Laika up to space in a satellite on November 3, 1957 -- sixty years ago. It followed the first ever Sputnik satellite launch earlier that year.

But things did not go exactly to plan and the dog was only able to survive for a few hours, flying around the Earth nine times.

"Those nine orbits of Earth made Laika the world's first cosmonaut -- sacrificed for the sake of the success of future space missions," says Kotovskaya, who remains proud of her pioneering work as a scientist training Laika and other early space animals.

For Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, Laika's voyage was yet another space feat to discomfit the Americans.

In a well-timed propaganda effort, it fell just before the 40th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution on November 7.

Kotovskaya recalls that before Laika, several dogs had been blasted up into suborbital space for brief periods of a few minutes "to check that it was possible to survive in weightlessness."

"Now it was time to send one into space," says Kotovskaya, who turned 90 in October but still heads a laboratory at Moscow's Institute of Biomedical Problems.

To get dogs accustomed to the idea of space travel inside a pressurised capsule just 80 centimetres (31 inches) long, Kotovskaya gradually moved them into smaller and smaller cages.

The canine candidates spent time in a centrifuge, that simulates the gruelling G-forces created when a rocket blasts off, as well as being exposed to similar noise levels.

They even ate jellified space rations.

Laika was a mongrel dog aged around three who weighed six kilograms (13 pounds). Like all the other candidates for space, she was a female stray found on a Moscow street.

"We chose bitches because they don't have to raise a leg to urinate which means they need less space than the males," Kotovskaya said.

"And (we chose) strays because they are more resourceful and less demanding."

For publicity reasons, the dogs also had to be photogenic and they were given memorable names.

Laika's name derives from the Russian word for "bark". She was chosen out of five or six candidates for her resourceful yet docile nature and slightly quizzical expression.

- 'Overheating and exhaustion' -

Russian scientist Adilya Kotovskaya was charged with preparing Laika for her space mission
"Of course we knew she was destined to die on the flight, since there was no way to get her back -- this wasn't possible at the time," said Kotovskaya.

On the eve of Laika's mission, the scientist went in to say goodbye to the dog and give her a final caress, she said.

The Sputnik satellite carrying Laika blasted off on a rocket at 5.30 am Moscow time from Kazakhstan, where the Soviet Union would later base its Baikonur cosmodrome.

Initially "nothing seemed to be going wrong," Kotovskaya said.

"Of course, during blast-off, Laika's heart beat speeded up a lot."

But after three hours, her heart beat was back to normal.

Then suddenly during the ninth orbit of the Earth, the temperature inside the capsule began to soar and reached over 40 degrees celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit), due to insufficient insulation from the Sun's rays.

The hope was that Laika would stay alive for eight to 10 days, but instead she died from overheating and dehydration after a few hours.

Soviet radio nevertheless kept broadcasting daily updates on her health, insisting all was well.

The official version was that she died after eating poison administered in her food to avoid a painful death on re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere. Moscow maintained this fiction for many years.

The satellite carrying her remains burnt up in the atmosphere five months later, on April 14, 1958, above the Antilles island group.

The first animals to go into space and return alive were a pair of dogs called Belka and Strelka who blasted off in a rocket on August 19, 1960 and returned a day later.

The success of their mission persuaded Soviet authorities to go ahead with the highly risky first space trip by a human, Yury Gagarin, in April 1961.]]>
11/2/2017 2:50:30 PM
<![CDATA[A click to make Egyptian streets accessible: Helm Foundation ]]>
The campaign invites social media users to interact with a video, directed by Amr Salama, and each interaction generates donations for installing ramps and tactile blocks on sidewalks for the visually impaired, renovating Faisal and Cairo University metro stations and building a bus station around Cairo University.

Accessibility_of_Street_1 Helm's first accessible street implemented in 2016 - Photo courtesy of Helm Foundation

In a prior interview with Egypt Today, manager and co-founder of Helm Foundation Ramez Maher stated that the objective is to turn Cairo University into a model of a fully accessible area in Egypt. “Our role as an institution is to introduce the governorate to the means and tools of establishing an accessible route, so that they can replicate it,” Maher stated.

The campaign video features Shalaby as a visually impaired woman and Malek in a wheelchair. Both are challenged to get around in the streets due to lack of accessibility.


(Comment = 5 Points, Share = 3 Points, Like = 2 Points, View = 1 Point … and each point generates LE 4.)

Helm had signed a protocol with Giza governorate in 2016 to implement the first accessible street in Egypt, which also targeted the surroundings of Cairo University. “We chose Cairo University because there are almost 1,000 staff and students with disabilities,” Maher stated. The projects apply international models, including special tiles for warnings and guidance, as well as adequately designed ramps.

The first initiative targeted one kilometer around the university, and the current campaign aims at further expansion in the area. Helm is also collaborating with Luxor governorate and the Ministry of Antiquities to expand the project and make Egypt accessible for all tourists, Maher revealed.

Accessibility_of_Street_2
Photo courtesy of Helm

First launched in 2014 as an initiative to facilitate the employment of people with disabilities, Helm Foundation has quickly expanded, providing trainings for business companies to accommodate them and guarantee their full inclusion, working with the government to provide accessible streets, and soon launching the first mobile application in the Middle East, where you can find the nearest accessible facilities, barber shops, restaurants, mosques, etc. and know exactly which barriers you would find there.

We had the chance to visit the foundation headquarters last month and talk to some of Helm’s inspiring ambassadors:



Armored with a strong vision and deep beliefs that disability is never the problem of a person, but rather the barriers that the society and other people put in their way are, “Helm” (Dream) Foundation has adopted a mission to promote the full inclusion of persons with disabilities in all aspects of life in Egyptian society.
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11/2/2017 11:49:17 AM
<![CDATA[Institut francais d’ Egypte celebrates Halloween]]>
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Attendees of Orange Touch event - Photo by Egypt Today/ Mahmoud Hassaballah

All attendees participating in the ceremony wore costumes in orange and enjoyed their time in a friendly atmosphere, dancing to the music by DJ. Dina Akladios who has played in many other locations such as El Gouna, Sahl Hasheesh, Jordan and many more.

Participants reacted with the celebration and wore masks suiting the event.
Halloween is a celebration observed in a number of countries on October 31, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows Day.

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Attendees of Orange Touch event - Photo by Egypt Today/ Mahmoud Hassaballah

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Attendees of Orange Touch event - Photo by Egypt Today/ Mahmoud Hassaballah

It begins the three-day observance of Allhallowtide, the time in the liturgical year dedicated to remembering the dead, including saints (hallows), martyrs and all the departed faithful.

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Attendees of Orange Touch event - Photo by Egypt Today/ Mahmoud Hassaballah

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11/1/2017 10:28:50 PM
<![CDATA[VNutrition an app for every Vegan]]>
The World Vegan Month has been celebrated annually starting November 1 around the world, where vegans celebrate animal rights.

Veganism is practiced in two ways: either as a diet or as a philosophy that rejects the commodity status of animals. In both cases, the one who practices either of the two is said to be a vegan.

The chair of the Vegan Society, Louise Wallis, established the day in 1994, as she knew that the day was founded in November 1944 but did not know the exact date. Thus, she decided that November 1 will be the beginning of the annual Vegan Month.

The idea began in 1944 when Donald Watson, Elsie Shrigley and their friends felt the importance of needing to distinguish the difference between not eating meat and not eating any products from animals.

Celebrations take the form of inviting people to a vegan lunch or dinner, sharing favorite vegan recipes on social media or even challenging friends to go vegan for 30 days by taking the Vegan Pledge.

Through the Vegan Pledge, people who want to become healthier, lighter and more vibrant can sign up and receive advice on all aspects of a vegan diet via email.

A new vegan campaign under the name of “Vegan on the Go” will be launched later to encourage retailers to provide vegans with more on-the-go type lunch options as a way of firmly establishing veganism as part of mainstream culture.

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11/1/2017 9:27:19 PM
<![CDATA[Careem empowers Egyptian women drivers ]]>
“Supporting women and providing them with reliable means of transportation and job opportunities has always been one of our main objectives. While the current number of female captains is relatively small compared to our overall captain fleet, we are proud of this growing initiative and our support and encouragement of women as they seek to build their own lives,” Ramy Kato, managing director of Careem Egypt, stated in a press release.

According to The Reality of Small and Medium Enterprises 2009-2015, a study by the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) issued in September 2016, Egyptian women are the heads of almost 18 percent of households. While women make up to 50 percent of the population, they constitute less than a quarter of the country’s labor force.

“Careem provided me with a flexible source of income in addition to my current job and helped me better support my family,” said Omaima Abdel Maboud, a mother of two based in Tanta. “My daughter and I are both Careem captains and I was encouraged to join Careem based on her recommendation. Most of the customers were of great support to me and I call on all Egyptian women to find a job that suits their needs and schedule similar to the opportunity Careem offered me.”

Egypt is just one example of Careem’s journey to support women. In KSA, Careem has created many jobs for females in its women-only call center in the Kingdom. In addition, following King Salman’s decree allowing women to drive for the first time, Careem announced its plans to hire up to 100,000 female captains in the Kingdom.

Careem is the region’s lead ride-hailing service that provides reliable, safe and affordable transportation choices via a mobile app, on the web and through a call center. Established in July 2012, Careem operates in more than 80 cities across 13 countries in the broader Middle East, North Africa, Turkey and Pakistan. Careem’s fleet in Egypt consists of 80,000 Captains across 14 cities.

GAL_15871_128266_1519258_2
Careem operates in more than 80 cities across 13 countries in the broader Middle East, North Africa, Turkey and Pakistan - Photo courtesy of Careem
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11/1/2017 3:26:33 PM
<![CDATA[Burberry parts ways with Bailey as new CEO refashions brand]]>
After joining Burberry from Gucci in 2001, Bailey worked with former CEOs Rose Marie Bravo and Angela Ahrendts to make its classic camel, red and black check designs must-haves for followers of fashion around the world.

Bailey will forego 16 million pounds ($21 million) in share awards when he steps down at the end of March to pursue new projects, Burberry said on Tuesday.

Ad campaigns fronted by model Kate Moss helped sales rise in the early 2000s, but Burberry became a victim of its own success when its check pattern was widely counterfeited.

However, Bailey successfully re-established its upmarket credentials and became CEO when Ahrendts left for Apple in 2014. But Burberry’s growth faltered, first as demand in Asia slowed, and then as it failed to ride a rebound.

The 46-year-old designer was paid 3.5 million pounds in the year to end-March.

His compensation had long been a focus, and a near 20 million pound share award which was not linked to performance was opposed by a majority of shareholders in 2014. Some of these shares, which were nevertheless awarded by Burberry’s board, are included in those now being surrendered by Bailey.

Burberry said Bailey would step down from his board positions of president and chief creative officer at the end of March, but would support Marco Gobbetti, who took over from him as CEO, until the end of December next year.

Bailey’s exit will enable Gobbetti to revamp Burberry’s creative direction as well as its operations, analysts said.

“Burberry ... has become somewhat predictable and deja vu,” Exane BNP Paribas said.

The company, which still manufactures trench coats in Yorkshire, northern England, poached Gobbetti from Celine to overhaul the business earlier this year, but left Bailey with creative control.

Gobbetti has already made changes to the company founded in 1856 by Thomas Burberry, cutting costs and striking a licensing deal for make-up and perfumes after they were bought in-house.

Burberry moved upmarket under Bailey, emphasizing its British heritage and launching new leather goods like the Bridle bag.

He also used social media and shook up traditional fashion production cycles by enabling people to buy designs as soon as they were shown on the catwalk.

The Burberry check baseball cap, a symbol of its earlier ubiquity, was resurrected in Bailey’s recent collection, priced at 195 pounds.

Shares in Burberry, which listed at 230 pence in 2002, were trading down 1.1 percent at 19.01 pounds at 1623 GMT.

Shareholder Old Mutual Global Investors said Bailey’s departure was not a surprise as his role had already changed.

“Had this been a few years ago then it potentially would have been a big deal, given how important Bailey has historically been to the success of the brand,” deputy fund manager James Bowmaker said.

“Since then, however, Burberry has broadened out its creative talent.”

Analyst Jelena Sokolova at Morningstar said Burberry’s new products were doing well, but staples like coats had lagged and a creative overhaul was never a sure-fire winner for a brand.

“A transition is always a risk,” Sokolova said.

Kering’s Gucci has been reinvented by Alessandro Michele over the past two years, with colorful, rococo designs that have fired up sales at a far faster rate than competitors.

Finding a new designer can be a long process – France’s Christian Dior took around eight months before appointing a new creative head last year, while new hires do not always work out.

France’s Lanvin is on its third designer in two years after parting ways with one-time star Alber Elbaz in 2015.

French luxury powerhouse LVMH recently denied a report that Celine designer Phoebe Philo was set to leave, although the Business of Fashion report has fueled fresh speculation that she could follow Gobbetti to Burberry.

The pool of potentially readily available top names includes Elbaz and Bouchra Jarrar, two Lanvin alumni, Ricardo Tisci, who left LVMH’s Givenchy earlier this year, and Hedi Slimane, former artistic director at Kering’s Saint Laurent.

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11/1/2017 12:18:32 PM
<![CDATA[iPhone X is best yet and FaceID works, mostly: reviewers]]>
The run-up to the Nov. 3 release of the redesigned glass and stainless steel device has been dominated by concerns over the supply and accuracy of the new system, which aims to improve on Samsung’s face unlock feature.

At $999, the iPhone X is the most expensive phone the company has ever launched, but demand is already far outstripping supply, according to analysts.

“It’s thin, it’s powerful, it has ambitious ideas about what cameras on phones can be used for, and it pushes the design language of phones into a strange new place,” Verge reviewer Nilay Patel said.

Apple shares rose as much as 1.4 percent to a record high of $169.09 on Tuesday.

There is no home button on the iPhone X, a key feature in previous phones.

The fingerprint sensor is gone as well, replaced by FaceID, which unlocks the phone by recognizing a face with the help of a front-facing “TrueDepth” infrared camera.

So does the FaceID work? Reviewers had reservations.

While the feature works even if the user changes their appearance, wearing sunglasses for instance, it may not work as well if some key facial features are obscured.

“I tried the phone with at least five of my coworkers. None of their faces unlocked it - although none of them look remotely like me,” CNET reviewer Scott Stein said.

Reviewers said Apple had given guidance that the system works best at a distance of 25 to 50 centimeters away from your face.

WORTH IT OR NOT?

Apple touted the iPhone X as a completely reimagined device. It has a display that covers the entire screen but for a notch at the top that houses sensors, lenses, microphones and speakers.

But many reviewers agreed that while some customers may be willing to pay the steep premium, as they usually do for new Apple devices, others may find the price unnecessary.

“For a lot of people, it’ll be worth it. For a lot of people, it’ll seem ridiculous,” Verge’s Patel said.

“But fundamentally, it’s a new iPhone, and that means you probably already know if you want to spend a thousand dollars on one.”

The iPhone X has three cameras, one in front and two at the back, which reviewers said were “top notch” and the best so far in an iPhone.

The device’s battery seemed to last up to a day, even after running heavy-duty apps, reviewers said.

This is the first time Apple has used an OLED display, which CNBC’s Todd Haselton said was the best display he had ever seen on a smartphone.

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11/1/2017 12:15:27 PM
<![CDATA[Sony revives pet AI project with updated AIBO robot dog]]>
The announcement comes a day after Sony confirmed its renaissance by forecasting its highest-ever profit this financial year, sending its shares surging to a nine-year high.

AIBO is billed as a pet that behaves like a real dog using artificial intelligence (AI) to learn and interact with its owner and surroundings. The upgrade sees AIBO equipped with new sensing and movement technologies as well as far more advanced AI backed by cloud computing to develop the dog’s personality.

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11/1/2017 12:11:17 PM
<![CDATA[Pain drugs in pregnancy tied to ADHD]]>
Researchers analyzed data on almost 113,000 children and their parents, including 2,246 kids who were diagnosed with ADHD. Almost half of the mothers took acetaminophen (also known as paracetamol) at some point during pregnancy, researchers report in Pediatrics.

Using the drug during just one trimester was associated with 7 percent higher odds of having a child with ADHD, while the increased risk was 22 percent for women who used acetaminophen in two trimesters and 27 percent with use in all three trimesters, the study found.

Short-term use didn’t appear to increase the risk for ADHD. In fact, when women took acetaminophen for less than 8 days, they were 10 percent less likely to have kids with ADHD than mothers who didn’t use the drug at all during pregnancy, the study found.

Women used the medicine for fever and infections for 22 to 28 days, however, were more than six times more likely to have kids with ADHD than mothers who avoided the drug during pregnancy.

“Surprisingly, adjusting for all the medical conditions related to acetaminophen use during pregnancy (e.g., infections and pain) and familial genetic risk for ADHD, children exposed to long-term use of acetaminophen use during pregnancy were more than two times more likely to have ADHD diagnosed by a specialist in a clinic,” said lead study author Eivind Ystrom of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health and the University of Oslo.

“This is important, since more than 50 percent of women in western countries use acetaminophen during pregnancy, a large number of children are also exposed to long term use,” Ystrom said by email.

Overall, researchers estimated that about 4 percent of the children in the study would have an ADHD diagnosis by age 13.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how prenatal acetaminophen use might directly cause ADHD.

One limitation of the study is that long-term use of acetaminophen during pregnancy might indicate a more serious illness or injury, and researchers lacked data on the severity of conditions that led women to use the drug.

Another drawback is that researchers relied on survey data to identify when and how long in pregnancy women used acetaminophen as well as the reasons they took the drug. Many people in the study also didn’t report a reason for using acetaminophen.

It’s possible that the connections between acetaminophen and ADHD in the study were merely due to chance, said Dr. Antonio Saad, a researcher at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston who wasn’t involved in the study.

“One also has to keep in mind that not using acetaminophen can have negative consequences,” Saad said by email. “Other pain and fever medications, such as ibuprofen, should not be used in pregnancy, which leaves narcotics as the only alternatives for pain and no alternatives for fever.”

Doctors generally advise pregnant women to take acetaminophen in the smallest dose possible for the shortest possible period of time when they have fevers.

“I don’t think that a very moderate dose of acetaminophen during only a few days would have any real effect on the developing brain,” Jordi Julvez, a researcher at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email.

The increased risk of ADHD linked to longer use of acetaminophen might also be due to the severity of medical problems women had, not their use of the drug, said Dr. Chittaranjan Andrade of the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences in Bangalore, India.

A serious fever or infection, for example, might be the reason babies developed ADHD, not acetaminophen their mothers took, Andrade, who wasn’t involved in the study said by email.

“The results of this study do not adduce sufficiently strong data to discourage the use of (acetaminophen) if indicated during any trimester during pregnancy,” Andrade said.

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11/1/2017 12:07:13 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Mark Twain]]>
Samuel Langhorne Clemens, or Mark Twain as we know him, was a celebrated American writer and humorist who had and still has a great effect on the minds of his readers, from simple children to sophisticated thinkers. Twain is most famous for his novels “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” (1876) and “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” (1885).

In a “David vs. Goliath” kind of affirmative way, Twain tries to convince people that at the end of the day that your motivation and passion to achieve something matter way more than what you think you are capable of. It is not really about the strength of your body, but the strength of your will.

Fun facts:
● Hannibal, Missouri, USA, which was the setting for his two famous novels, is actually where he was born on November 30, 1835.

● Before becoming a journalist, Twain tried his luck as a gold miner and a printer, and he even became a riverboat pilot, according to Good Reads.

Another one for the road:
“Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn't.”]]>
11/1/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Can spicy foods curb salt cravings or lower blood pressure?]]>
When people didn’t care for spicy food, they consumed an average of 13.4 grams a day of salt, according to the study published in the journal Hypertension. But when people craved spicy dishes, their average salt intake was just 10.3 grams a day.

Systolic blood pressure – the “top” number showing how much pressure blood exerts against artery walls when the heart beats, was 8 mmHg (millimeters of mercury) lower for people with the greatest love of spicy foods than for individuals with the lowest tolerance for spice, the study also found. Diastolic blood pressure – the “bottom” number indicating how much pressure the blood exerts on artery walls when the heart is at rest between beats – was 5 mmHg lower for spice lovers.

“Our study shows that the enjoyment of spicy flavor is an important way to reduce salt intake and blood pressure, no matter the type of food and the amount of food,” said senior study author Dr. Zhiming Zhu of Third Military Medical University in Chongqing, China.

“We advise people to enjoy spicy food in their daily life as long as they can tolerate,” Zhu said by email. “We do not recommend people who can’t tolerate pungent of chili pepper consume spicy food frequently.”

A high-salt diet has long been linked to higher odds of developing high blood pressure and heart disease as well as an increased risk of heart attack, stroke and heart failure. But determining the ideal amount of dietary salt is controversial because some research has also found an elevated risk of heart disease, high blood pressure and heart attacks in otherwise healthy people who consume too little salt.

Some previous research suggests that trace amounts of capsaicin, the chemical that gives chili peppers their pungent smell, may heighten salty flavors in foods, essentially requiring lower amount of salt to achieve the flavor people may want, Zhu said by email.

For the current study, researchers wanted to see if this heightened awareness of salty flavors in food might translate into lower salt intake, Zhu said.

Researchers also used imaging techniques to look at two regions of the participants’ brains — the insula and orbitofrontal cortex — known to be involved in salty taste.

They found that the areas stimulated by salt and spice overlapped, and that spice further increased brain activity in areas activated by salt. Authors said that this increased activity likely makes people more sensitive to salt so that they can enjoy food with less of it.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how a love of spicy foods might translate into eating less salt or having lower blood pressure.

Another drawback is that researchers relied on surveys to determine how much salt participants consumed, and they didn’t independently verify this, the authors note.

It’s also possible that results from Chinese people might not apply to other racial or ethnic groups in other regions of the world.

“It is impossible to tell from this study which types of spices will be the most beneficial or how much spice is required to see a beneficial effect on lowering salt intake or blood pressure,” said Richard Wainford, author of an accompanying editorial and a pharmacology researcher at Boston University School of Medicine.

“There are no key spices identified in this study,” Wainford said by email. “A good way to think about it is adding a little spice may be beneficial!”

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11/1/2017 11:49:58 AM
<![CDATA[Manhunt Egypt Pageant underway]]>
Karim el Bialy is the founder of Fashion Republic, a company specializing in purchasing competition licenses; it is a part of Pageants Republic company. This is the first competition for the company and it will not be the last. Bialy said Manhunt is an international company in fashion and beauty, and there will be more surprises in the next phase.

Bialy stressed that they meet international standards for the competitors to represent Egypt honorably before the whole world, considering accountability and transparency in choosing candidates.

Karim Sharif, the national director of the competition, gave some advice to the 15 contestants, urging them to adhere to the competition program for the highest scores. In order to achieve transparency, Sharif explained how to calculate and distribute the points for each contestant according to the competition’s program.

WhatsApp_Image_2017-10-31_at_4.31.15_PM
Photo by Egypt Today/ Mahmoud Hassaballah

Marwa Talaat, public relations manager and media consultant at Pageants Republic, expressed her pleasure to work with the company, adding that she agreed to join Pageants Republic for their honesty, professionalism and commitment.

Talaat is cooperating with Karim Sharif to train the contestants to prepare them for the final ceremony. The intensive training will include; how to deal with these competitions according to international standards. The goal is to train models to do better in international competitions.

Elham Wagdy, Miss Egypt Universe 2009, has given some valuable tips that she gained through her personal experiences participating in four international competitions and winning more than 13 international titles.

These tips included some of Wagdy’s experiences standing up on stage, facing the judging panel and answering questions intelligently. She also expressed her dissatisfaction with recent competitions and the reputation of current competitions, adding that she hopes that the picture will change and that competitions will be free from fraud.

Wagdy also spoke of the credibility of this competition and that Baily and Sharif have a good reputation, which emphasizes the transparency and credibility of the choice.

WhatsApp_Image_2017-10-31_at_4.31.08_PM
Photo by Egypt Today/ Mahmoud Hassaballah

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10/31/2017 10:40:11 PM
<![CDATA[The Egyptian Chef’s Association Celebrates 20 years]]>
DSC_3156
Photos courtesy of Semiramis Intercontinental Cairo
The event took place in collaboration with Agriform, one of Italy’s top cheese production companies in the Veneto region. The cocktail reception gathered many chefs, media personnel and Cairo’s finest foodies at the award-winning, fine dining restaurant, The Grill.

Attendees wined and dined on the finest Italian risotto, ravioli and cheese-oriented passarounds crafted by the Semiramis Intercontinental culinary team and Agriform cheeses.

DSC_3178
Photos courtesy of Semiramis Intercontinental Cairo
Semiramis Intercontinental Cairo hotel is one of Egypt’s well-established fine dining destinations. The association presented General Manager of Semiramis InterContinental Sameh Sobhy with a certificate of appreciation, commemorating two decades of success and many more to come.

DSC_3204
Photos courtesy of Semiramis Intercontinental Cairo
ECA is a non-profit organization that has represented professional chefs in Egypt since 1997. It sets standards as well as providing education and career development to its members, with the aim of becoming internationally certified in the culinary world. ]]>
10/31/2017 4:26:52 PM
<![CDATA[Michelin 2018: San Franscisco chefs outshine New York's]]>
The Guide's 2018 edition saw celebrity chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten suffer the indignity of being downgraded from three to two stars, leaving the US cultural and financial capital with just five three-star restaurants.

And San Francisco? It has seven.

Seventy-two New York restaurants were awarded stars by the celebrated culinary guide, down from 77 in 2016. Michelin said several previously ranked restaurants had been dropped from the list because they had since closed.

But most notable was the loss of three-star status for Vongerichten's flagship Jean-Georges, one of the most glittering restaurants in New York and situated in the Trump International Hotel and Tower overlooking Central Park.

It was at Jean-Georges that then president-elect Donald Trump dined on November 30, 2016 with Republican grandee Mitt Romney, whom he was then considering but quickly afterward passed over as a possible US secretary of state.

After eating in full glare of other diners, Trump let Romney walk out alone after the meal to heap praise on the incoming president before the cameras, offering remarks that contrasted sharply with his criticism on the campaign trail.

Jean-Georges, which opened in 1997 to critical acclaim and has long been the jewel in the French-born chef's empire, is now one of 11 New York restaurants with two stars.

Instead of the three-star ranking, which Michelin characterizes as "exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey," its downgraded status is classified as "excellent cooking, worth a detour."

The restaurant's prix fixe dinner starts at $148 a head.

San Francisco now has the most number of three Michelin-starred restaurants in any US city. Chicago has two three-starred restaurants. Washington has none.

New York is home to 56 one-starred restaurants. Six new restaurants joined the star selections, three of which feature Japanese cuisine, the guide said.

While dwarfed by the population of New York, San Francisco is one of the most expensive cities in the country, hugely popular with tourists, famed for its Golden Gate Bridge and which in the 1990s became the hub of the dot-com bubble.]]>
10/31/2017 12:32:17 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Wednesday Addams Halloween Special ]]>
Created by cartoonist Charles Addams for The New Yorker in 1938, the family consists mainly of seven members and a hand; the Addams family went on to become a huge fictional phenomenon, turning into a sitcom in the 60s; then returning as a cartoon series in the 70s before turning eventually into a blockbuster movie in 1991.


"Amanda: I’ll be the victim.
Wednesday Addams: All your life.”

Wednesday’s character, generally and especially in this scene, mocks the idea of pretentiousness and defies the notion that she would ever need saving. She is making fun of her complete opposite Amanda for choosing to be the victim, which Wednesday sees as a life-long choice of the “fake” Amanda, who would rather wait for a hero to come and save her.

Fun fact:

● Anthony Hopkins was offered the role of Uncle Fester Addams, according to mental floss, but he turned it down to play Hannibal Lecter in the movie "Silence of the Lambs;" a role which earned him an Oscar.



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10/31/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Women find some respite in Libya's 'families only' cafes]]>
The cafes with European names and bright decor seem a world away from the city’s traffic-clogged and still violent streets. In a socially conservative society, they also offer privacy and protection from unwanted advances.

“If I go with my friends, we chat about our problems and change our mood,” said 27-year-old Haneen, eating a late breakfast in the busy La Rambla cafe. “A family place is more comfortable ... there’s no harassment or flirting.”

For owners and managers of the businesses marketing themselves as “families-only” cafes, it’s also a welcome change from the traditional clientele - hundreds of other rowdier eateries across Tripoli are packed out with young men, tables spilling out onto the streets and giant screens broadcasting soccer matches.

“Family cafes are great,” said Abdulhameed Ghreetly, manager of At Home cafe, which looks out onto the Mediterranean. “They are less of a headache than the cafes for young guys. You know the problems with the young guys and their quarrelling.”

Most of Tripoli’s economy has been in freefall since major battles between rival factions in 2014 left the country divided with competing governments.

The female clients are offering some respite - managers say they spend more on fancy coffees and juices than the espresso-sipping men.

“THE WOMEN COME TO EAT”

“The guys just ask for coffee and water,” said Mohamed Abdurrazak, La Rambla’s owner. “The women come to eat.”

The menus are heavy with pastries, pancakes, waffles and milkshakes, along side the popular “Oriental breakfast” which includes shakshouka (poached eggs in a spicy tomato sauce) and ful (fava beans with herbs and spices).

Prices are higher, too. A coffee in a regular cafe costs two Libyan dinars ($1.50 at the official exchange rate, 25 cents at black market rates), and five or six dinars in a family cafe.

The new businesses are also flourishing in Benghazi, Libya’s second city, which suffered heavy damage during more than three years of fighting. Customers come to relieve the daily stress, said Saad al-Farjani, the owner of the Coffee Factory.

“All the time you hear of new family cafes opening. There are about 20 and there could be more.”

Some see the cafes as heralding a return to relative normality – their owners say they have had little trouble from armed groups known for extortion and theft. Upmarket shops, some with international brands, have opened in smarter neighborhoods.

Opinion is split on what the cafes say about Libyan society.

For some they are a sign of increasing openness – Libyan women have little chance to socialize outside the home.

For others they are a reminder of the limits on women in a country where outdoor public spaces are dominated by men.

“I consider coming to the cafe like traveling, a change of atmosphere,” said Ghada Mohamed, a 37-year-old customer at Coffee Factory. “I hope that cafes ... become like cafes abroad, for example, with seats outside. Unfortunately in Benghazi we cannot sit outside enough.”]]>
10/31/2017 11:53:10 AM
<![CDATA[After years of antipathy, Britain embraces Halloween]]>
Market research analysts Mintel estimate that consumer spending on Halloween will rise to 320 million pounds ($418 million) this year, a 3.2 percent rise on 2016.

Millennials are responsible for much of the growth - 60 percent of that demographic spent money on Halloween in 2016.

The figures reflect a market that has rapidly expanded since the turn of the century - spending on Halloween products in the UK was just 12 million pounds in 2001, according to market research company YouGov.

A 2013 YouGov poll found that 74 percent of Britons said they would not be celebrating Halloween on Tuesday.

This hostility has long been documented in the country’s media, with newspaper columns like last week’s “Call me an old witch but I hate Halloween,” in London’s Evening Standard being a longstanding seasonal fixture.

Experts say that many Britons’ antipathy to Halloween was caused by a lack of historical attachment, as well as the view that it was an invasive cultural import from the United States.

“The Scottish version of Halloween was an old Celtic festival,” Hugh O‘Donnell, a professor of language and popular culture at Glasgow Caledonian University and author of a book about Halloween’s international appeal, told Reuters.

“England hasn’t been exposed to that kind of culture, the whole idea of Halloween is not only new, but their acquaintance of Halloween has not come from Scotland - it’s come from the United States.”

The lengthy queues building up outside some London costume emporia this year, as in recent years, attest to the event’s increasing acceptance in British popular culture.

“I never thought it could get any busier, but it literally got busier and busier and busier,” Andy Andreou, manager of London costume shop Angels, told Reuters with respect to the rise in Halloween trade over his 18 years of working there.

“The queues we have are ridiculous and people are happy to queue - I can’t tell you the enormity of it.”

Public relations manager Kyle Livingstone, at Angels to pick up a zombie costume, told Reuters that Halloween’s appeal was centered on “Just fun - it’s all about fun.”]]>
10/31/2017 11:33:35 AM
<![CDATA[Farida Osman delivers empowerment message to slum kids]]>
“I hope I can encourage you and help you achieve what you want and follow the path you choose because I feel like every girl deserves and is capable to realize a lot of accomplishments for Egypt,” Osman addressed the young ladies at “Safer Cities for Girls” project.



The project, a collaboration between Plan International organization, UN-HABITAT and Women in Cities International, aims at building safe, accountable, and inclusive cities with and for adolescent girls. It is implemented in five cities worldwide, including Cairo, since 2014, where it accommodates 1,000 girls and 300 boys.

“We invited Osman to join us so that we can inspire girls in such communities that there are no boundaries and that they have to go out and pursue their dreams,” Plan Egypt’s Strategic Partnership and Advocacy Manager Noha Abdel Hamid told Egypt Today. “We want to show them that there is a very positive model, who is almost their age; she fought and overcame a lot of challenges and managed to achieve a world record.”

Plan Egypt and Al-Nour organization, the executive partner in the project, arranged a gathering, where Osman talked to girls and boys about the personal challenges she has managed to overcome, answered their questions and listened to their own dreams and goals.

“I want to become a heart doctor and I will study hard until I achieve my dream,” Yara, 15, told Osman.

Safer Cities for Girls project targets adolescent girls between 13 and 18 years old. It works with the girls and members of the community of Ezbet Khairallah to spread awareness about girls’ rights and eliminate the dangers of sexual harassment.
“We also work with government entities to create a communication line between them and the girls, where they can express their opinions and concerns,” Mona Hussein, Plan advocacy communications coordinator, explained.

The project further provides self-defense trainings and diverse sessions for the girls, to know their rights and express them in a productive way. It has just recently expanded to include the boys in the area as well, Hussein added.

“I am really interested to help women in Egypt in general to achieve what they want. I want to be a good ambassador to them,” Osman told Egypt Today.

“I want to make use of the fact that I am an athlete and I have learned a lot and been through a lot; and I felt like Plan would be a good way for that.”

Farida Osman visits "Safer Cities for Girls" - EgyptToday/Yasmine Hassan

Nicknamed the Golden Fish, Osman was the first ever Egyptian to claim a medal in the Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA) World Championships, held in August 2017.

The 22-year old started swimming at four years old. At 11, she participated in her first national championship, where she won four gold medals. A year later, she represented Egypt in the African league and has been a national source of pride since then.

A two times Olympian, Osman was also the first-ever Egyptian woman to win a gold medal at the 2011 FINA World Junior Championships and she is the African and Egyptian record holder in the 50m freestyle. She has recently graduated from University of California, Berkley, and is currently getting ready for Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

“I want to encourage girls to pursue their path of choice … It will be difficult and will need sacrifice but when they reach what they want, it will be the best feeling ever,” the Golden Fish told Egypt Today.
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10/30/2017 9:49:55 PM
<![CDATA[Groppi Reawakened ]]>
Mohamed Fares, senior partner-chief designer at Alchemy Design Studio said, “let's reclaim this Groppi glory and return the golden age and the sophistication of "je ne sais quoi" again, the secret ingredients of our beloved Groppi.”


Alchemy Design Studio have been working on this sensitive and historic project for the past two years. They paid close attention to every detail and the idenity of Groppi so that it can be restored to its orignal glory.

Mohamed Fares comment _Screenshot
Mohamed Fares comment Screenshot


Entering Groppi is like stepping in a place where time has stopped; the furniture, the menu, and the décor were all far removed from the world just outside the doorstep.

The Swiss Jacques Groppi built the restaurant, located in the heart of Downtown on Talaat Harb Street, around 1924 after the La Rotande in Paris. It remained Downtown’s posh tearoom until the 1960s. It is still considered a historic landmark and a must-see spot for tourists.

It was the go-to place for officers, directors, writers, artist, and socialites during the British occupation. Anybody who is anybody was seen there in their finest attire.

Photos _ Egypt Today_Mohsen Alam
Photo _ Egypt Today_Mohsen Alam


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10/30/2017 6:00:41 PM
<![CDATA[Quick fix for self-confidence using body language tricks]]>
If you go into a pitch, interview or date and focus only on the words you use, you are leaving your most powerful tool behind.

Research has found that the right body language helps you portray higher levels of confidence, charisma and intelligence.

Can our body language change how we think and feel about ourselves?

Studies show that our subconscious mind doesn’t distinguish between fact or fiction information; however, it controls over 90% of our actions. This means that our thoughts (whether they are real or imaginary) translate into feelings, we take actions according to these feelings, and repetitive actions become our lifestyle, which in the end determines our outcome.

Photo_Via_Pixabay
Photo Via Pixabay

Thoughts/feelings/actions/lifestyle/Destiney

So basically, if we could control our thoughts, we could control many things in our lives. Controlling our thoughts takes a lot of focus and practice in order to master it, and it isn’t exactly an easy ride for most people… Is there any way around that? Sure, fake it until you make it… Yes, exactly as you read it, we are going to trick our minds by using our bodies in order to get the desired outcome and here is how it works:

There is scientific evidence proving the strong effect of our physiology on our minds, meaning that our bodies affect our minds.

For example: it’s normal to smile when you feel happy, but what about when you hold a pen in your teeth and force yourself to smile… How do you feel? You feel happy too, because it goes both ways.

Another example is to acknowledge and state how you feel at this very moment, then start clapping one clap, two claps, three faster claps, four faster claps, five faster claps…now check how you feel. You are more energetic and happier.

That proves that our bodies change our minds, our minds change our thoughts, and our thoughts change our outcomes.

It’s the same thing when it comes to self-confidence or feeling powerful. Even if you don’t feel confident, once you try a two-minute “powerful pose” (for example by putting your hands on your waste), you will feel and act more confident and powerful.

Confident people are known to be powerful, more assertive and more optimistic. They are able to think more abstractly, make rational decisions and communicate effectively; they are more influential; and they make great leaders and partners… who doesn’t want to become that person?

How can power poses for a few minutes change your life in meaningful way?

Before you go to your next stressful evaluative situation (be it an interview, a date or a pitch) configure your brain to cope the best in your situation by practicing a power pose for two minutes.

“You want to feel that you have the power to bring your full, spirited self to the situation, stripped of the fears and inhibitions that might typically hold you back.” - Amy Cuddy

Once in that interview, date, or meeting, you’ll notice that your body language reflects your confident state of mind. Most likely you’ll be sitting straight with an open posture, your head up and with a smile on your face.

Developing your self-confidence is a process that you go through to improve your personality. The two-minute power pose is a simple “quick fix,” but a person who’s interested in working on themselves in this area should look more in depth at the real causes and work on it gradually. There are many workshops that could help you go through that process.

To sum it up, “Emotions are created by motions.” - Tony Robbins… So if you don’t like how you feel at any given moment, just change your physical status.

Photo_Via_Pixabay
Photo Via Pixabay

About Marlin:

With long-term, multicultural life experiences in world-class communities across the globe, Marlin Soliman takes our day-to-day communication to a whole new level. She helps her clients become dynamic, confident speakers who can inspire action by delivering a message that matters in an adequate manner.

Her experience in PR includes working as a celebrity manager in the prestigious agency MAD Solutions, renowned for handling celebrities’ affairs. Marlin handled many celebrities, including Hend Sabry, Nahed El Sebai, Yasmin Raeis, scenarist and producer Mohamed Hefzy, director Marwan Hamed, director Hadi El Bagoury and music composer Tamer Karawan.

Her educational background afforded her the opportunity of being well exposed to various aspects of communication. Soliman earned her bachelor’s in French language and literature and mass communication at Anderson University in the U.S.. She also studied French Literature at La Sorbone University in France, received an executive management diploma from the American University in Cairo and a certificate in training TOT from the International Communication Training Institute in the U.K.

Marlin M Soliman Facebook page: Act Right by Marlin Soliman

Sel- Confidence Photo Via Pixabay
Photo Via Pixabay by AlexasFotos

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10/30/2017 5:06:33 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Mario Testino]]>
Testino is recognized as one of the most influential and in-demand fashion and portrait photographers in the world.

Born in Lima, Peru to a traditional family, Testino was isolated from the world of art and luxury. Soon after he relocated to London to pursue his passion for photography his career began to take shape when he was commissioned to photograph a haircut by stylist Lucinda Chambers for British Vogue. “I noticed an evolution in my work… when I tried to recreate my youth in pictures.”

Suzy Menkes, Vogue’s international editor said of Testino’s artistic style, “Testino’s skill is first and foremost to catch the moment and to bring out the humanity in his subjects.”



His work has been featured on the covers of Vogue, V Magazine, Vanity Fair, GQ, Allure and many more. He has also created magnificent imagery for branding and marketing campaigns for gigantic power houses such as Gucci, Burberry, Versace, Michael Kors, Chanel, Estée Lauder and Dolce & Gabbana.



He photographed princess Diana for the cover of Vanity Fair’s 1997 July issue, just one month before she tragically passed away. “One of my greatest experiences in life was photographing princess Diana. It’s not only that the experience itself was amazing, but she opened a door for me because I then started photographing the royal families of Europe extensively… this brings out my love for tradition, for a way of showing family and the longevity of people.”

Fun Facts:

● Throughout his 40-year career he has moonlighted as a creative director, guest editor and a museum founder.

● Nicknamed the “John Singer Sargent of our times” by Terence Pepper, photography curator at the National Portrait Gallery in London.

● He founded MARIOTESTINO+ a full-services creative agency due to the high demand from his clients.

Another quote for the road:

“The year has 365 days, and I want each and every one of them to be exciting.”

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10/30/2017 2:53:34 PM
<![CDATA[Nintendo nearly doubles net profit forecast on Switch console]]>
The Kyoto-based video game giant said it now expects a net profit of 85 billion yen ($748 million) for the fiscal year to March 2018, well up from an earlier estimate of 45 billion yen, as it boosted its revenue and operating profit estimates.

Nintendo also raised sales projections for Switch, which was launched in March with a price tag of US$300 and is seen as a new pillar for the company's earnings.
It now expects to move around 14 million Switch consoles in the current business year, up from an earlier 10 million forecast.

Switch, capable at home and on the go, blends Nintendo's console and handheld device business with its fledgling mobile gaming strategy, which got a big brand win with Pokemon Go's success in the summer of 2016.

"Switch is in excellent shape as sales of both hardware and software are growing steadily," said Hideki Yasuda, an analyst at Ace Research Institute in Tokyo, before the earnings announcement.

Nintendo is positioning itself for the year-end holiday shopping season with Switch, while a cheaper yen has also bolstered its bottom line.
A drop in the currency inflates the value of profits earned abroad by Japan's exporters.

During the April-September period, the company launched several headline game titles for Switch, including "Mario Kart 8 Deluxe" and its popular "Splatoon2".
Its "Super Mario Odyssey" released last week is also expected to increase sales for the second half, the firm said.

"A potential risk is a hardware shortage where they could not keep up with surging demand," said Yasuo Imanaka, an analyst at Rakuten Securities in Tokyo.
For the first half to September, Nintendo's net profit reached 51.5 billion yen, up 34.5 percent from a year earlier.

Operating profit came in at 40 billion yen, reversing a year-earlier operating loss, while revenue was 374.0 billion yen --- nearly triple last year's level.
Nintendo shares have nearly doubled since Switch's launch, although they slipped 0.25 percent to end at 42,870 yen on Monday. The earnings were announced after markets closed.

Nintendo said its "Super Mario Run" and other smartphone games racked up sales worth 17.9 billion yen, more than five times higher than a year earlier.

Smartphone game app "Pokemon Go" sparked a worldwide craze last year that has captured customers beyond Nintendo's traditional fan base.

The mobile app, developed by an outsider, significantly spiced up its brand and spilt over to boost the popularity of the overall Pokemon franchise.

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10/30/2017 12:02:09 PM
<![CDATA[China agency denies dead Russian model, 14, was overworked]]>
The death of Vlada Dzyuba in a Chinese hospital on Friday has shone a light on the murky world of western models in China, many of whom are from the former Soviet Union and dream of carving out a career in the notoriously cut-throat industry.

The teenager, who despite her young age was allowed to model under Chinese law, began feeling dizzy and started being sick last Tuesday.
She was taken to a Shanghai hospital the next day but died on Friday after her condition quickly deteriorated.

English-language newspaper The Siberian Times alleged that Dzyuba died of meningitis compounded by severe exhaustion following "a gruelling fashion show in Shanghai".

"We feel sorry that we lost an angel," ESEE Model Management in Shanghai said in a statement on Weibo, China's equivalent of Twitter, pointing out that Shanghai Fashion Week ended on October 18 and she fell ill six days later while on another assignment.

ESEE's chief executive Zheng Yi separately told the state Global Times that the model had worked a legal eight hours a day during her two months in China before her death.

"Dzyuba had 16 different jobs during her two-month stay in China, she had regular breaks while working," Zheng told the newspaper on Sunday.

"Most of her work was completed within eight hours. Her workload was moderate compared with other models."

After the Shanghai event Dzyuba travelled to Yiwu, a city south of Shanghai, but a model shoot was cancelled because she began feeling unwell and she returned to Shanghai.

The Global Times quoted a representative for Shanghai Fashion Week as saying it was investigating and cited a medical report saying that she had septicopyemia, a type of blood poisoning.

Dzyuba died less than two weeks before her 15th birthday.

Dzyuba's profile was still on ESEE's website on Monday, three days after her death, showing her in a number of poses and in different styles of clothing.

It lists her hair and eyes as brown and puts her at 180 centimetres tall.

In its statement, ESEE said it had signed a contract with Dzyuba and her modelling agency back home in Russia for a three-month contract.

After returning to Shanghai from Yiwu last Wednesday morning, she went home to recover.

But with her health worsening, she was taken to hospital and put in touch by telephone with Russian consular staff, while her family were also informed that she was unwell.

The next day, according to ESEE, consular officials and police arrived at Ruijin Hospital and Dzyuba was placed in intensive care, where she died the next morning.

As well as Shanghai, ESEE has offices in the nearby city of Hangzhou, Beijing, the eastern city of Xiamen and Hong Kong.

The agency was to hold a press conference later on Monday in Shanghai.
There was no immediate reply from Shanghai Fashion Week or Russian officials in China.]]>
10/30/2017 11:54:19 AM
<![CDATA[Disabilities tied to worse access to care, poorer health]]>
One study found that people with disabilities in the UK have worse access to care largely due to struggles with transportation, costs and long waiting lists for appointments. The other study was done in the U.S. state of Ohio and found people with disabilities were more likely to have unmet medical needs and less likely than others to have a primary care physician.

“We expected to find disparities, but we anticipated that they would not be too wide,” said co-author of the UK study Dr. Dikaios Sakellariou, a researcher at Cardiff University.

“It was also surprising that cost appeared to have such a big impact on people’s access to care, especially in England,” Sakellariou said by email. That’s because the British National Health Service (NHS) generally provides free care, except for medication, he said.

Roughly one in five people in the UK live with a disability, researchers note in BMJ Open.

To see how disability influences access to care, researchers examined survey data on access to care for 12,840 people over the age of 16 who didn’t live in institutional settings like nursing homes. This included 5,236 people with disabilities.

The most common obstacle for all people - whether they had a disability or not - was long waits for treatment, the study found. This was more common, however, for individuals with disabilities and impacted more than one in four people with severe disabilities.

Researchers also found that people with severe disabilities were more than four times as likely to lack treatment for mental health problems as individuals without disabilities.

In addition, women with disabilities were more than seven times more likely to have unmet health needs due to the cost of care or medication than men without disabilities.

This might be due in part to women having lower incomes than men, or more hurdles like the lack of transportation or insufficient time to seek care due to responsibilities caring for kids or other relatives, Sakellariou said.

For the Ohio study, researchers examined survey data on almost 43,000 adults and more than 10,000 children with and without developmental disabilities.

Overall, they found that 14 percent of children aged 18 and younger with disabilities had problems receiving needed care, compared to 2 percent of kids without disabilities.

Among adults 65 and older, half of people with disabilities and 17 percent of individuals without disabilities reported having one or more unmet healthcare needs, researchers report in the Annals of Family Medicine.

Adults with disabilities were also less likely to have a primary care physician that spends enough time with them or to have clinicians who explained things well.

Neither study was a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how disabilities may influence access to care.

But previous research has documented significant health disparities for people with disabilities, and the findings suggest that lack of access is one reason why, researchers involved with both studies said.

A lack of training for healthcare providers is another problem, said Susan Havercamp, a co-author of the U.S. study and researcher at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center’s Nisonger Center in Columbus.

“Healthcare training programs have not changed much in the past 100 years,” Havercamp said by email.

“In contrast, the lives of people with developmental disabilities have changed a great deal,” she said. “A century ago, babies born with developmental disabilities were not expected to survive childhood.”

Now, many of these babies will grow up and require lifelong care that’s tailored to their specific physical and mental health challenges.

“The best way to reduce health and healthcare disparities in people with developmental disabilities is to include disability training in all healthcare training programs,” Havercamp added.

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10/30/2017 11:15:27 AM
<![CDATA[Baking soda plus water best for washing pesticides off apples]]>
The mix outperformed Clorox-spiked water for getting rid of the chemicals, and also worked better than plain water, Dr. Lili He of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst and her colleagues found. They reported their findings October 25 in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Pesticides are widely used in agriculture to kill bugs, fungi and other produce-plaguing pests. They can hurt humans, too, but most of us are exposed to amounts so tiny that they don’t pose a risk, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Many people try to limit their exposure to pesticides by washing produce, but whether or not this does anything to remove them has not been studied, Dr. He and her team note. They coated apples with thiabendazole, a fungicide, or phosmet, which is used to kill a variety of pests, and washed them with water or water mixed with bleach or baking soda. The researchers used Gala apples because they are widely consumed and also likely to contain a wide variety of pesticides.

Using super-sensitive, high-tech tests, the researchers checked on and within the apple for pesticides and measured pesticide concentration within plant tissue. Rinsing the fruit in the baking soda solution for 12 minutes was most effective for removing thiabendazole, they found, while a 15-minute baking soda rinse was most effective for getting rid of phosmet.

Some of the pesticide passed beyond the apple’s surface, with thiabendazole going four times deeper than phosmet. None of the washing methods could fully remove the residue.

After harvest, the EPA requires apple producers to soak the fruit for two minutes in bleach mixed with water. The quick dip is intended to remove bacteria and other organic matter, not to wash off pesticides, Dr. He noted in a telephone interview with Reuters Health, but it would be ideal to find a post-harvest treatment that would do both.

The baking soda solution is likely more effective because it can help break apart pesticide molecules, the researcher said, and can be used for washing other types of produce. How well it works “depends on the structure of the fruits and vegetables, but it’s a general method,” she added.

Dr. He and her colleagues used a concentration of about one teaspoon of baking soda per two cups of water. But, she said, “You don’t need to be precise, just adding a little bit is better than not adding it.”

While deeper-penetrating pesticides could be removed by peeling an apple, the researcher said, this would mean missing out on the nutrient-rich skin. “It’s always been a two-sided story.”

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10/30/2017 11:11:34 AM
<![CDATA[Young diabetics may check sugar more when money’s at stake]]>
Researchers tested out the potential for money to motivate young people to test blood sugar daily by offering $60 a month up front and then subtracting $2 for each day a participant didn’t follow through on required testing. For three months, researchers randomly selected 90 teens and young adults to get these cash incentives or no reward at all.

Overall, the youth with money at stake met their daily blood sugar testing goals half of the time, while without rewards, participants only met their testing goals 19 percent of the time.

“The young people felt motivated and empowered to find ways to check their glucoses more with money on the line,” said lead study author Dr. Charlene Wong of Duke University in Durham, North Carolina.

“They were especially motivated by the increasing losses if they missed the goal multiple days in a row,” Wong said by email.

All of the study participants had what’s known as type 1 diabetes. This chronic condition, typically diagnosed in children and young adults, occurs when the pancreas produces little or no insulin, a hormone needed to allow blood sugar, or glucose, to enter the body’s cells.

People with type 1 diabetes typically have to test their own blood sugar levels throughout the day and inject insulin to manage it. Poorly controlled diabetes can lead to cardiovascular disease, kidney complications and death.

While young children typically manage their blood sugar with a lot of help and supervision from their parents, daily blood sugar monitoring often gets worse in adolescence as children start to take over responsibility for their own care, researchers note in JAMA Pediatrics.

To see if cash could help improve the odds of teens doing these daily tests, researchers turned to what’s known as behavioral economics to see if the threat of losing prize money might be a more powerful motivator than the promise of winning money.

Study participants were 16 years old on average, and most of them were full-time students living at home.

All of them were given daily blood sugar monitoring goals of testing at least four times a day with at least one result within a safe or normal range.

The teens who could get cash did better at testing during the three months when the financial incentives were offered. But when researchers followed participants for an extra three months without any cash on the line, the differences between the groups disappeared.

There also wasn’t a meaningful difference in blood sugar levels based on whether or not the youth could receive cash rewards, either at three months or at six months.

“The intervention was designed for the teenage brain, as it provided short-term monetary rewards for health behaviors,” said Dr. Joyce Lee, author of an accompanying editorial and a researcher at the University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor.

“However, the study did not necessarily translate to better controlled blood sugar in the long-term,” Lee said by email. “Checking blood sugars is important for diabetes care, but taking insulin is also really important and the study did not incentivize behavior related to insulin dosing.”

That doesn’t mean there is no place for behavioral economics in trying to motivate teens to take charge of their health, Lee said. The idea of loss aversion, or offering a prize that can go away, may have potential to get youth to meet testing goals.

“This study shows that there are new opportunities to “nudge” healthy behaviors teens with in type 1 diabetes using connected diabetes devices and mobile technology,” Lee added. “But I would caution parents that we need more studies to determine the long-term efficacy of these behavioral economics interventions.”

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10/30/2017 11:08:50 AM
<![CDATA[et Fashion Designer of the Week: Dina Shaker]]>
With a degree in fine arts specialized in interior design, Shaker soon realized that her heart and style were meant to be in fashion.

Shaker went on to study fashion design and marketing at the Cairo Fashion Design center and in 1999. She founded and creatively directed “Spicy,” a brand that followed international standards.

via GIPHY



With the creative need to be more artistic and self-explanatory, she created her own self-titled label in 2001 with an avant-garde identity.

While playing on the hard and soft elements with day and night looks, her 2017 fall/winter collection “Recomposed Classic” does just that. In the 20-piece collection, the main character is the winter jacket which is oversized, deconstructed and a three-in-one transforming piece of edgy wearable art that also transforms into a skirt and shorts.

Her collections are sold in the fashion capitals of the world such as Milan, London, Beirut and Kuwait City.

via GIPHY


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10/29/2017 5:39:59 PM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Winona Ryder]]>
The 90’s icon and dream girl rose to fame after she appeared in the cult favorite “Heathers,” which is now considered a classic teen movie.

Ryder has won a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress and was nominated for an Academy Award for her roles in “The Age of Innocence” and “Little Women.”

Winona Laura Horowitz is the daughter of an author, video producer, bookseller and publisher. She was born in Olmsted County, Minnesota in 1971 and raised in a Californian commune that had no electricity.

She chose her celebrity name Ryder when she was asked how she wanted her name to be written in the film credits and a Mitch Ryder album was playing.

Fun facts:
● She was named after a town close to where she was born.
● Her mother would let her miss school so that she could watch movies at the barn cinema that she ran at the commune.
● Martin Scorsese in her opinion is "the best director in the world."
● She co-starred with Cher in “Mermaids.”

Another quote for the road:
“The older you get, the more yourself you can be and the less worried you are about what other people think.”
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10/29/2017 2:48:39 PM
<![CDATA[Fresh Food at the "Slow Downtown: Farm to Fork Menu & Market" ]]>
Eish & Malh chefs will create a menu made from free local seasonal produce. The menu will be available from 8:00 a.m. till midnight offering breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Slow Downtown market will run from 11:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. in order for you to grape local fresh produce in support of local farmers to take home for the whole family to enjoy. Entertainment will include live music and a Marionette show for children.


The Slow Food Cairo organization hosts many different events in four different cities in Egypt: Cairo, Alexandria, Fayoum, South Sinai to promote healthy, fresh and local products supporting local farmers worldwide with over 100,000 members.

Eish & Malh is Downtown Cairo’s go-to spot for Italian Cuisine with a menu full of fresh pizza, meat, fish, home-made pasts, breakfast and dessert. They also host many different events includinh live music performances, movie nights and much more.
Slow Downtown is a monthly event held at Eish & Malh every first Friday of the month.


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10/29/2017 1:55:12 PM
<![CDATA[Risk of irregular heart rhythm rises with weight and age]]>
Researchers examined data on almost 80,000 people, ages 24 to 97, in four European studies. When they joined the studies, none of the participants had atrial fibrillation.

After following half of the participants for at least 13 years – and some of them for nearly 28 years – researchers found that 4.4% of the women and 6.4% of the men had developed atrial fibrillation. Compared to people who didn’t develop atrial fibrillation, those who did had a tripled risk of dying during the study period, researchers report in Circulation.

Excess weight explained most of the increased risk with atrial fibrillation, said study author Dr. Christina Magnussen of the University Heart Center Hamburg in Germany.

“For each additional 10 pounds, the atrial fibrillation rate increases by 31% in men and by 18% in women,” Magnussen said by email. “As (weight) is a modifiable risk factor, we advise weight reduction for both women and men.”

In atrial fibrillation, the upper chambers of the heart, or atria, quiver instead of beating to move blood effectively.

Few people developed atrial fibrillation before age 50, the study found.

By age 90, roughly one in four men and women had the condition.

High cholesterol didn’t appear to increase the risk of atrial fibrillation. In fact, the opposite held true, especially for women.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how specific risk factors like high cholesterol or obesity might increase the risk of atrial fibrillation. Some people also might have had undiagnosed atrial fibrillation when they joined the study.

Even so, the results add to the evidence that the risk of atrial fibrillation decreases with weight loss, said Dr. Jonathan C. Hsu, a researcher at the University of California, San Diego, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“As the body ages or gains weight, inflammatory molecules may be released into the blood,” Hsu said by email. “This type of inflammation may affect the heart and increase the risk of developing atrial fibrillation.”

Both men and women can reduce their odds of heart problems such as atrial fibrillation by improving their overall health and losing weight, Hsu added.

“Prior studies have shown that the lifetime risk of developing atrial fibrillation is one in four, with increasing age, elevated blood pressure, obesity, smoking and alcohol consumption being major risk factors, said Dr. Gregg Fonarow, a researcher at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“This study further highlights that maintaining a healthy body weight and blood pressure, and not smoking, can substantially lower the risk of developing atrial fibrillation,” Fonarow said by email.]]>
10/29/2017 12:44:56 PM
<![CDATA[Individualized diets may help ease irritable bowel syndrome]]>
People with IBS who went on customized diets that avoided foods with the potential to trigger symptoms felt better than patients whose diets included foods that were problematic for them, researchers found.

As many as one in five adults may have IBS, a disorder that can cause chronic abdominal pain, gas, diarrhea, and constipation, researchers note in BMJ Open Gastroenterology.

Intolerance to certain foods can trigger these symptoms, and patients may seek relief by using blood tests to pinpoint which foods they need to avoid.

For the current study, researchers did blood tests to identify problematic foods for 58 patients with IBS. Then, the researchers randomly assigned patients to follow diets that purposely avoided or included these problem foods for four weeks.

Participants did not know whether they had been put on diets designed to include or exclude problem foods.

While all of the participants reported improvement at the end of the experiment, people on individualized diets that excluded problem foods felt significantly better overall and in terms of symptom severity, the study found.

The blood test “may identify the few foods that are worsening symptoms, resulting in a more manageable dietary plan, and do so in a shorter time than by a trial-and-error approach,” said lead study author Dr. Ather Ali of Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut.

The blood test used in the experiment, called a leukocyte activation test, has not been rigorously tested, however, and the study was small. Ali noted in an email that more research is needed to confirm the findings.

The two groups of participants didn’t report meaningful differences in quality of life, but people on individualized diets excluding problem foods experienced improvements in symptoms like abdominal pain and swelling.

Beyond its small size and the newness of the blood test approach, another limitation of the study is that researchers relied on participants to accurately recall their symptoms, the authors note.

Because the study was brief, people did a good job of following their assigned diet. It’s possible patients wouldn’t stick to the diet as well over a longer period of time, the researchers also point out.

Even so, using blood tests to identify only a few problem foods might offer patients a less restrictive diet than an approach often used for IBS that requires people to avoid a wide variety of foods, Ali said.

Often, patients are put on what’s known as a `low FODMAP’ diet that restricts foods high in fermentable oligo-, di- and monosaccharides and polyols (FODMAPs), carbohydrates that are quickly fermented by intestinal bacteria. Fermentation can produce gas and bloating that may contribute to IBS symptoms.

“Patients demand advice on restriction diets as many experience onset or worsening of their symptoms in relation to intake of certain foods,” said Dr. Laura Rindom Krogsgaard, a researcher at Zealand University Hospital in Koege, Denmark, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“In recent years, focus has been on the low FODMAP diet, but we still lack evidence for the effect of the diet followed by patients in the long term and a clarity of the possible side effects,” Krogsgaard said by email.

Part of the problem is that patients with IBS often report symptom improvement in diet studies even when they’re placed on a sham eating plan that wasn’t designed to ease symptoms, Krogsgaard said.

Cell Science Systems of Deerfield Beach, Florida, did the blood tests and funded the study.

It took years of research to convince doctors to propose a low FODMAP diet to patients, and it will also take more time and research to see if it makes sense to consider food intolerance blood tests as a reasonable way to craft individualized diets, said Dr. Peter Gibson, a researcher at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“The results of this study should not change practice,” Gibson said by email. “I would want to see more studies, over a longer period, show gratifyingly good effects (the effects were not great – quality of life did not change at all) before recommending such an approach.”]]>
10/29/2017 12:43:51 PM
<![CDATA[Wider Image: Mexico's indigenous Muslims in Maya heartland]]>
In the southern state of Chiapas, home to a lush mountainous landscape, I photographed members of a small Muslim community made up of hundreds of mostly indigenous Tzotzil men and women, many of whom converted to Islam from Catholic or other Christian denominations.

The Muslim men here are distinguished by their prayer caps, or kufis, and the women by their hijabs which take the form of traditional Maya shawls.

Locals say the conversions to Islam here began in the late 1980s, around the same time Mexico’s Zapatista movement was gaining traction in Chiapas, as institutions including Christianity and capitalism came under increasing criticism.

According to the last census, some 83 percent of Mexicans are Catholic. And although Muslims make up less than 1 percent of Mexico’s 120 million population, a disproportionate number are indigenous clustered in and around San Cristobal de las Casas, a highland city in Chiapas that mixes both Maya and Spanish identity.

“People gave us a weird look when we converted, they thought we were terrorists and were scared of us,” said Mustafa, a member of the nearby Ahmadia community. “But with the passage of time and our own actions, that opinion has changed,” he added.

Umar, an indigenous former evangelical pastor, converted to Islam in the late 1990s and now serves as a bridge between local Christians and Muslims.

“Ours is a monotheistic religion,” he said. “But we don’t worship saints.”

I later met 55-year-old Mohamed Amin who invited me to his home, offering me cookies and tea. He showed me where he prays five times a day and introduced me to his family. He asked me if I believed in God and I said no. That did not appear to bother him.

He went on to explain the main reason behind his conversion to Islam.

“I like to be clean and change my clothes,” he said. “This is a clean religion and that’s what originally drew me to it.”]]>
10/29/2017 11:44:08 AM
<![CDATA[AL organizes " An Arab against Smoking" marathon]]>
AL Assistant Secretary General and Head of the Administrative and Financial Affairs Section Adnan Issa inaugurated the marathon that has been organized by the AL General Secretariat in coordination with Life Without Smoking "Hayah Bela Tadkhin" and the Egyptian Red Crescent Association.

It comes within the framework of the AL summer training program for university students 2017.

The marathon will be followed by a symposium on the dangers of smoking, Issa said.

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10/28/2017 1:26:07 PM
<![CDATA[Michelin 3-star restaurants rise to seven in S. Francisco]]>
Michelin, which rates restaurants, awarded three stars to six restaurants last year in City by the Bay, and the neighboring wine producing Napa Valley that was recently hit by deadly wildfires that killed more than 40 people and caused millions of dollars in damages.

Michelin had postponed the release of its San Francisco area eating guide by nearly two weeks because of the wildfires.

“There is no denying San Francisco and its neighboring regions have some of the most incredibly exciting and dynamic restaurants in the country,” Michael Ellis, international director of the Michelin Guide, said on Wednesday.

Michelin reviewers agreed to elevate Coi to three-star status due to its head chef Matthew Kirkley’s innovative seafood dishes, according to Ellis.

“He has really upped his game. We were excited to move Coi from two to three stars,” Ellis said.

Coi joined Benu, The French Laundry, Manresa, Quince, The Restaurant at the Meadowood and Saison in the three-star group for their “exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey.”

There are more than 100 restaurants in the world with the three-star distinction.

Michelin’s anonymous “inspectors” rate restaurants in 28 countries and its stars are seen as a sign of top-notch dining around the world. It also rates restaurants in three other U.S. locations - New York City, Chicago and Washington.

Michelin awarded stars to 55 restaurants in northern California in its latest guide, up from 54 a year ago.

In the two-star category for their “excellent cuisine, worth a detour,” SingleThread debuted in the 2018 guide for its beguiling menu that features local ingredients with inspiration from Japan, Ellis said.

Californios became the first U.S. restaurant that serves Mexican cuisine with two Michelin stars.

Other two-star eateries include Acquerello, Atelier Crenn, Baumé, Commis and Lazy Bear.

Michelin awarded one star to 41 restaurants for a second straight year for their being “a very good restaurant in its category.”

Four restaurants that made their one-star debut are In Situ, Kenzo, Kinjo and Rich Table.

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10/28/2017 12:58:19 PM
<![CDATA[Less wealth tied to higher odds of premature death]]>
While plenty of previous research has documented health problems associated with poverty, the current study looked beyond just income to focus on a wide variety of financial resources that adults in the U.S. and UK may accumulate by middle age and beyond.

“Interestingly, the link between wealth and health outcomes was seen in both the U.S. and England, which are two countries with very different health and social safety net systems,” said study leader Dr. Lena Makaroun of the VA Puget Sound Health Care System and the University of Washington in Seattle.

“We also saw the same pattern for older adults both above and below age 65, at which age Medicare becomes available in the U.S. and around which age retirement benefits kick in in both countries,” Makaroun said by email.

The similarities suggest that for low-wealth individuals, health care or financial benefits alone may not be enough to improve their health trajectory, she added.

For 10 years, the researchers tracked nearly 20,000 participants in the U.S. and England from nationally representative groups of older adults. They looked at two different age groups - 54 to 64 and 66 to 76 - because Medicare and Social Security benefits in the U.S. and the State Pension in England typically begin around age 65.

The connection between wealth and health was clear even among the younger people in the study, researchers report in JAMA Internal Medicine.

In the U.S., people aged 54 to 64 in the lowest of five levels of wealth, with assets of no more than $39,000, had 17 percent risk of death and 48 percent risk of disability over 10 years.

By contrast, the wealthiest of the five groups, with more than $560,000, had a death risk of 5 percent and a disability risk of 15 percent.

Disability was defined as any difficulty in performing activities of daily living, such as dressing, eating and bathing.

In the U.K., people aged 54 to 64 in the lowest wealth group, with no more than 34,000 euros, had a 16 percent death risk and a 42 percent disability risk over 10 years. The wealthiest group, with more than 310,550 euros, had a death risk of 4 percent and a disability risk of 17 percent.

For the adults aged 66 to 76, the absolute risk of death and disability was higher, but the differences across levels of wealth were similar, the study found.

One limitation of the study is the differences between financial and health circumstances for adults in the U.S. and the U.K., the authors note. Another shortcoming is the lack of disability data for some people included in the disability analysis.

In some instances, people may also receive retirement benefits in either country, or government health benefits in the U.S., before age 65, the researchers also point out.

Even so, the findings add to a large and growing body of evidence linking wealth to health outcomes, said Dr. Martin McKee, author of an accompanying editorial and a public health researcher at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

“It highlights how the health system is only one input into health, something we have known for many years,” McKee said by email.

“We do know that greater wealth and income gives you the resources to make healthy choices in diet, leisure, etc.,” McKee added. “Moreover, having greater wealth is like having an insurance policy against things going badly wrong, giving you a more positive outlook on the future.”

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10/28/2017 12:50:32 PM
<![CDATA[Life after death for the 'Love Bug' in Ethiopia]]>
The Beetle was born in the 1930s out of dictator Adolf Hitler’s desire to produce a cheap “people’s car” for the German family. After World War Two it sold in the tens of millions around the globe and in the 1960s even starred in a Disney movie as Herbie the “Love Bug”.

Production of the original version of the curvy little vehicles ended in 2003, and authentic spare parts can be hard to come by. So Ethiopian mechanics have to “slaughter” some cars to keep others alive.

“If one is in a bad condition, we will cannibalize it and give its parts to other cars. That is how we extend their life,” said Kinfe, the 74-year-old garage-owner who has been working on Beetles for six decades.

“The Volkswagen Beetle is a servant car for lower income people. They never fail you - they take you anywhere and have excellent functionality,” he said.

“I wish the Germans had continued producing them. They abandoned them and things started falling apart.”

“They are lovely cars,” said Teferi Markos, a mechanic in Kinfe’s garage. “You get satisfied when you fix them. If you want to change the color, they absorb any paint.”

About 8,000 commercial and other vehicles are assembled in Ethiopia for the home market, about a quarter of them cars. The numbers of expensive imported models on the roads is also rising as a new middle class emerges.

But the pint-sized Beetle still has a loyal fanbase. Some young Ethiopians find it trendy, while for other drivers it is soaked with nostalgia.

“My brother-in-law owned a Beetle and I learned to drive with it when I was a young student,” said Workineh Kebede, 41, a businessman in the capital.

“I like them because they are so easy to drive. So I bought it because of my love for them since that time. It is not for economic reasons - I could afford to buy other cars.”
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10/28/2017 12:37:00 PM
<![CDATA[et Beauty: Evolution of eye makeup]]>
Smoky eye shadow started gaining popularity during the 1920s. The look was achieved by dragging black eyeliner across the lash-line and blending it into the lids and crease with a grey or brown eye shadow.

In the 1930s, makeup companies started introducing colored eye shadow. Women started experimenting with the different types by lightly brushing across the lid and crease.

Embracing natural features sparked a trend during the 1940s. Women enhanced their natural lashes by using mascara and used neutral eye shadow across the lid.

The infamous cat-eye was first introduced in the 1950s when liquid eyeliner was invented. The look was taken to a new level in the 1960s when thick liquid eyeliner became a trend and dark shadows across the crease were introduced.

In the 1970s, colorful eye shadows made yet another appearance. But this time, they were blended with other colors. This is when creating the looks with more than one eye shadow first began.

The everyday messy eyeliner became a trend in the 1980s, blended out with light colors across the lid and a darker color across the crease and end of the lid. Women also wore heavy mascaras to emphasize the lashes.

The 1990s brought back neutrals and introduced taupe colors. In the new millennium, the 2000s, smokey eyes were more popular than ever. Women started incorporating false eyelashes in the 2010s as part of their makeup routines]]>
10/28/2017 10:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Tennessee Williams]]>
Thomas Lanier Williams III or Tennessee Williams was one of the leading American playwrights of the 20th century. Through his remarkably wise, yet simple style and thoughts, Williams wanted to teach us that while many obstacles might seem to stand in our way, the biggest obstacle is actually time. Time is what stands between you and what you want to become or accomplish. So be patient because “the violets in the mountains have broken the rocks.”

Tennessee Williams was born on March 26, 1911 in Columbus, Mississippi, The United States. In 1939, Williams moved to New Orleans and changed his name to "Tennessee" which was the name of his father's home state. Williams lead a very successful life and died on February 25, 1983.

Fun Facts:
● He won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama twice, once for “A Streetcar Named Desire” in 1948 and again for “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” in 1955.

● Both his Pulitzer winning dramas were turned into films which achieved great success.

]]>
10/28/2017 9:54:27 AM
<![CDATA[et Tech: 3 must-have fitness apps]]>
MyFitnessPal:

Probably one of the most popular fitness apps, MyFitnessPal is designed as your fitness buddy that helps you track your calories, macros and various easy healthy recipes.

Nike Fitness Club/ Nike Run Club:

If you love running, Nike Run Club is a great option to track your speed and distance. It offers a variety of program preferences for beginners and athletes. If you are more of a workout junkie, Nike also released its Nike Fitness Club app that is filled with cool workout plans and easy to follow videos.

Sworkit - Comprehensive:

Sworkit is an app that has a diverse video library of different types of workouts. From yoga to cardio to strength training, Sworkit has it all.]]>
10/28/2017 9:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[et App review: Daily Art]]>
Daily Art is an application which belongs to the art website "Daily Art Dail," where they state their mission. They said, “You have entered the place where art history gains the voice it deserves. Our mission is to present art history stories in the most compelling and fun way. DailyArtDaily.com is your daily dose of beauty and inspiration based on the genius and talent of the great artists of the past."

1
Screenshot from Google play

The application allows you to have a healthy dose of art through providing you with a new piece of artwork every day with a short article about the artwork (painting, photograph or sculpture), mentions its story, who is the artist, and where the piece is being displayed now.

2
Screenshot from Google play

The application consists mainly of three taps: your daily art, archive and about. Also on the top right corner, there's a light bulb which changes the application theme from light to dark, and a search button which allows you to search the archive for artworks by name of piece or artist.The search button turns into a share button when displaying a painting so you could share your artistic findings with friends, family or followers. The application claims that its archive has more than, “1000 masterpieces, 600 artist biographies and 480 museum collections,” ready for you to explore.

3
Screenshot from Google play

The application is deemed educational by Google play and indeed it can be very informative and exciting for all those who love art and the stories behind it. So far the application scored more than a 100 thousand downloads with a 4.7 rating on Google play and a 4.9 on iTunes.

4
Screenshot from Google play

]]>
10/27/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Childcare staff behavior may encourage kids to sample healthier food]]>
Specifically, children in daycare were more willing to taste greater numbers of nutritious foods when staff members sat with them and ate the same food, when the staff determined whether children were full before removing the plate, and when they talked about healthy food.

In contrast, merely sitting with children at meal times, or encouraging picky eaters to try a food, “were not associated with desirable outcomes, such as children tasting nutrient-dense foods more frequently and unhealthy foods less frequently,” the researchers reported in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

The study emphasizes the importance of slowing down, taking a few moments - lunch doesn’t really last that long - to role model, talk about healthy choices, and enjoy the meal with children, said study co-author Susan Sisson of the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in Oklahoma City.

Over 60 percent of American children aged three to five attend early care and education centers, study researchers noted.

The community-based study involved 201 three- to five-year-olds at 25 early care and education centers, including eleven tribally affiliated centers, across rural and urban settings in Oklahoma.

Trained observers recorded classroom behaviors and the children’s receptiveness to tasting healthy foods, such as fruit, vegetables, and low-fat dairy items, as well as less healthy fried vegetables, fried meat, high-fat meat, and high-fat/high-sugar food items.

As quantities for serving sizes can vary dramatically, “each food item was counted as long as the child tasted the food item at the lunch meal, rather than using actual serving sizes,” the authors explained in their report.

“Young children may not consume full servings of foods due to their bodies’ needs,” they added. “By counting each type of vegetable served rather than the volume of servings, centers that serve mixed vegetables are favored because they are exposing children to multiple vegetables in one meal that collectively add up to the volume of one serving.”

Bethany Yon, spokesperson for the American Society for Nutrition who was not involved in the study, told Reuters Health that the study’s emphasis on how willing the children were to taste different foods, rather than how much they ate, is “certainly a relevant approach when observing the toddler and preschool population where feeding goals are often around acceptance of new foods, and young children frequently enter a phase of food neophobia.”

Charlotte Stirling-Reed, a registered nutritionist and spokesperson for UK-based Nutrition Society, who also was not involved in the study, told Reuters Health, “I regularly deal with little fussy eaters and believe that childcare settings can play a huge role in getting children to eat well from a young age.”

“The idea that they have used ‘tastes’ as opposed to amount eaten is still quite useful as tastes often increase acceptance over time. Getting young children to have small tastes of food can be really important for improving familiarity with different foods,” Stirling-Reed said.
]]>
10/27/2017 11:31:49 AM
<![CDATA[Scrappy Cuban clothing line exemplifies ingenuity with U.S. online store opening]]>
Its site, clandestina.co/, went live on Thursday with an initial selection of T-shirts with Cuban slogans like "resistir y vencer" (resist and conquer), no small feat in a country with minimal internet access.

While the designs will remain Cuban, U.S.-based manufacturers will produce the apparel and ship them to U.S. buyers, Clandestina said. The U.S. trade embargo and supply restrictions in Cuba make it virtually impossible to ship from there. The Spanish citizenship of a Clandestina co-owner gave the brand the ability to set up in the United States.

Clandestina’s move highlights the ingenuity of Cuba’s fledgling private sector in overcoming obstacles on the communist-run island and abroad.

The clothing brand is one of the success stories among the private stores, restaurants and bed-and-breakfasts that have emerged under President Raul Castro, who has implemented market reforms to modernize Cuba’s Soviet-style command economy.

“The Clandestina brand has always been one about succeeding against the odds and overcoming the seemingly impossible,” said co-founder and creative director Idania del Rio, 36.

She and her Spanish business partner Leire Fernandez, 42, created Clandestina in 2015, opening a flagship store in Old Havana selling clothes, bags, posters and trinkets that have quirky Cuban designs and slogans reflecting local humor.

“Actually I‘m in Havana” reads one T-shirt, while another says “I’m a mamey (fruit), you can make a milkshake out of me”.

A lack of wholesale stores and restrictions on importing for the private sector in Cuba meant they had to get creative to acquire textiles and keep up stock.

Friends brought batches of raw T-shirts in their suitcases from abroad that they print their designs on, and Clandestina became even better known for its “upcycling” of second-hand clothing to make unique pieces.

They say they now have 27 employees and their shop attracted more than 20,000 visitors last year.

Like many private Cuban businesses in Havana, Clandestina benefited from a boom in U.S. travelers since a thawing of U.S.-Cuban relations in 2014. Some 70 percent of its shoppers are foreigners, half from the United States.

But U.S. President Donald Trump in June ordered tighter restrictions on travel to Cuba from the United States. Washington also issued a travel warning to the island last month after allegations of health attacks on U.S. diplomats.

A likely drop in U.S. customers in Cuba and the desire to expand their business made it the perfect time for them to open up the first Cuban online fashion store in the United States, the Clandestina duo said.

“If the Americans don’t come to Cuba, well, we will go to the United States,” said Del Rio.

As a Spaniard, Fernandez was able to register a company in the United States, and a loophole in the embargo allows her firm to hire Cuban designers. The aim, eventually, is to build Cuba’s first global fashion brand.

“Not a lot of people know what’s going on in Cuba,” said U.S. visitor Kasha Trogak, perusing their Havana store. “Curiosity can definitely help to sell the product.”]]>
10/27/2017 11:29:07 AM
<![CDATA[et Guide: Where to go this Halloween]]>
Cairo Festival City Mall


Dandy Maga Mall




Mall of Egypt


Porto Cairo Mall


Point 90


KidZania Cairo


For the late nighters:

Tap Maadi: Halloween

Tap_Maadi_Halloween_Via_Tap_Maadi_Facebook_Page
Tap Maadi Halloween Via Tap Maadi Facebook Page

Tap East: Halloween

Tap_East_Halloween_Via_Tap_East_Facebook_Page
Tap East Halloween Via Tap East Facebook Page

Nineteen Twenty Five


Basement


Bus Stop New Cairo: The Haunted Bus

The_Haunted_Bus_Via_Bus_Stop_New_Cairo_Facebook_Page
The Haunted Bus Via Bus Stop New Cairo Facebook Page

Bus Stop Sahl Hasheesh: The Haunted

The_Haunted_Bus_Via_Bus_Stop_Sahl_Hasheesh_Facebook_Page
The Haunted Bus Via Bus Stop Sahl Hasheesh Facebook Page

Cairo Jazz Club: The Coven ft. Kitchen Crowd (visiting) / Shiha

The_Coven_ft._Kitchen_Crowd_(visiting)-Shiha_Via_Cairo_Jazz_Club
The Coven ft. Kitchen Crowd (visiting)-Shiha Via Cairo Jazz Club

If you still haven’t figured out what or who you will be for the spooky night check out our

DIY Halloween costume ideas.




A little need to know about Halloween so that you can be the intellectual one at the party.

Halloween

is a variation of the Celtic holiday known as “Samhain,” which originated in Ireland more than 2,000 years ago. November 1 marked the end of the harvesting season and the beginning of the year according to History.com.

Celts celebrate New Year’s Eve on October 31 and it was believed that the souls of the deceased haunted the village as ghosts. To avoid confusion between humans and ghosts, Celts wore masks over their faces.

]]>
10/27/2017 11:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Kelly Osbourne]]>
Osbourne, daughter of Rock and Roll icon Ozzy Osbourne, and the legendary Sharon Osbourne was born on this day in 1984 in Westminster, England.

Osbourne spent most of her life in the lime light because of her mother’s and father’s public status. The family stared in their own reality show, “The Osbourne’s”, which won the Outstanding Reality Program award at the Emmy’s in 2002.

Juggling many professions, she was a host on “E! Fashion Police” alongside comedian Joan Rivers, she also came in third place in “Dancing with the Stars.” Following in her mother’s footsteps, she was on the judges panel for “Australia’s Got Talent” and “Project Runway Junior”.

Ozzy joined her on a duet in 2003 called “Changes”, which originally was a Black Sabbath song from 1972.

Fun Fact:

● During Osbourne’s childhood, she lived in more than 20 homes.
● She has a fashion brand called Stiletto Killers.

Another quote for the road:
“Women are so unforgiving of themselves. We don't recognize our own beauty, because we're too busy comparing ourselves to other people.”

]]>
10/27/2017 10:47:31 AM
<![CDATA[Build your empire like Okhtein]]>
On October 20,

Beyoncé

, the international singer and mother to everything fabulous, posted on her Instagram not one—but three posts— that have now garnered over one million likes, where she is seen wearing the

Egyptian luxury accessories brand’s

new classic dome belt and orange shoulder bag from the 2017 spring/summer collection.

A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on



The pair behind the Okhtein brand, Mounaz and Aya Abdel Raouf, will share the ins and outs of how they built their brand Okhtein and guide attendees in branding, marketing, researching and outsourcing all the elements that start-up brands need in order to become successful.

Egyptian designers Aya and Mounaz Abdelraouf launched their brand Okhtein in 2013 in Egypt. The pair design luxury accessories products such as clutches and bags. Okhtein means “sisters” in Arabic, as the pair are sisters.

Born and raised in Caro, both girls’ love for fashion and style began at a young age. Mounaz is an already-acclaimed painter who has showcased her artworks in Egyptian and French exhibitions.

In order to support Egyptian craftsmanship, they felt the need to incorporate handmade embroidery, straw and leather into their designs.


The workshop will be held over a two-day period, covering the importance of research, building a workshop while outsourcing persons and materials, going over their design process, marketing and PR techniques, as well as other important aspects of brand-building.

The workshop will be held at Sane Egypt starting November 11. To find out more, visit

Sane’s Facebook page

. ]]>
10/26/2017 5:11:40 PM
<![CDATA[Depression tied to shorter lifespan]]>
Researchers examined six decades of mental health and mortality data on 3,410 adults during three time periods: 1952 to 1967, 1968 to 1990 and 1991 to 2011. Depression was associated with an increased risk of premature death in every decade of the study for men, and starting in the 1990s for women.

The connection between depression and a shorter lifespan appeared strongest in the years following a depressive episode, leading the researchers to conclude that at least part of the risk might be reversed by effectively treating the mental illness.

“For some individuals depression can be very serious condition,” said lead study author Stephen Gilman of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

“Given our finding that individuals whose depression was present at multiple time points in our study were at highest risk, it is very important to seek treatment for depression and to be vigilant about recurrences,” Gilman said by email.

Depression has long been linked to a variety of health problems, in part because it may lead to physiological changes in the body and also because it can contribute to unhealthy habits like a poor diet, inactivity, smoking and excessive drinking.

In the current study, however, researchers found a link between depression and premature death even after accounting for things like obesity, smoking and drinking habits.

“It is known that depression is associated with an increased risk of death from heart disease,” said Dr. Ralph Stewart, a researcher at the University of Auckland in New Zealand who wasn’t involved in the study.”

“This study suggests that this increased risk of death extends to other causes of premature death and persists over decades,” Stewart said by email.

The researchers examined data from the Stirling County Study, which began in 1952 in Canada and is one of the first community-based studies on mental illness.

People were about 50 years old on average when they joined the study. Across the three time periods examined, researchers followed half of the participants for at least 19 years.

Researchers calculated life expectancies at age 25 for men and women with and without depression in each wave of the study.

In the first wave, life expectancy with depression was 10 and 12 years shorter for women and men, respectively, researchers report in CMAJ. It was 7 years shorter for men with depression in the second wave, and 7 and 18 years shorter for women and men with depression, respectively, in the last group.

Men with depression were almost three times as likely to die early at the beginning of the study, but the increased risk declined to 52 percent by the end.

Women’s risk of a premature death increased, however. At the start of the study, women with depression were 8 percent more likely to die prematurely, and by the end their increased risk was similar to men’s odds at 51 percent.

Limitations include a long interval between participant interviews, which prevented the research team from determining the exact timing of depression and recurrences, the authors note.

Even so, the findings underscore the importance of diagnosing and treating depression, said Dr. Gjin Ndrepepa, a researcher at the German Heart Center and Technical University in Munich, Germany, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“Since the risk related to depression decays over time, great efforts should be made to improve treatment and prevent recurrences of depressive episodes,” Ndrepepa said by email.

Treating depression, Ndrepepa added, “can reduce depressive symptoms, improve quality of life and potentially prolong life.”]]>
10/26/2017 4:06:19 PM
<![CDATA[Shagara: A harbinger of Egyptian green schools ]]>
Egyptian social entrepreneur, Mohamed Abdel Samad, 29, founded Shagara initiative (“Shagara” is Arabic for “tree”) shortly after the 2011 revolution. He developed an idea to utilize the wide spaces on rooftops and in the surroundings of the schools – which more often than not attract garbage dumps – and turn them into real sustainable farms. The project would eventually promote a healthier ecosystem, engage the students in a productive project, and provide a source of income thanks to fruit-yielding trees and plants.

bla“My main incentives were global warming problems and pollution, as well as environmental education, and the lack of productive activities in public schools,” Samad tells Egypt Today.

After a challenging battle with paperwork and approvals, the Shagara project became a reality for the very first time in 2013 at a public school in Egypt’s Al-Qalyubia Governorate.

Four years later, the school has successfully managed to maintain and develop the project, from the few crops that Shagara has planted on the rooftop to a year-long cycle of vegetables and ornamental plants.

Agriculture and farming have become a central part in the school curriculum; and the teachers, as well as the students, have introduced several initiatives that incorporate the project in wider artistic, recycling and community initiatives.

“I gather the students and teach them the whole process from the very beginning, from treating and preparing the soil to cultivating crops and taking care of the plants,” Amira Allam, an agriculture teacher, tells Egypt Today. “The project is progressing but it needs more support and funding,” she adds.

Apart from being a practical application for agriculture lessons and an inspiration for artistic ideas, the school has also uncovered significant psychological benefits for the project.

“Sometimes, students have behavioral problems and they become aggressive. When they spend a week or 10 days taking care of their own plants, their behavior changes significantly and they acquire personal and life skills,” the school psychologist affirms.

We visited Shagara’s first rooftop project and talked to the students-turned farmers and agriculture and art teachers who all confirmed how their sustainable farm has been a turning point for the whole school.



“I learned a lot about farming and seeing my plants grow day after day has taught me a lot of patience,” says Hassan, a sophomore student at the school. “I can now do it at home if I want.”

The next phase of the Shagara project is set to expand the idea to many more schools. Having attained primary approval from the Minister of Education Tarek Shawki, Samad is now working on implementing “Shagara at School 2.0”.

The new project will also add solar panels to neutralise any sort of carbon emissions, Samad says. It will turn the roof into a landscape where students do not only get to cultivate their own farms but can also sit for classes and become more exposed to clean green spaces anytime they wish.

Aiming to encourage a wider concept of green design in Egypt, Shagara 2.0 will also incorporate senior architecture students to introduce them to the practices of agricultural architecture.


Sahagara at School - EgyptToday/Yasmine Hassan ]]>
10/26/2017 3:22:46 PM
<![CDATA[Higher nicotine in e-cigarettes tied to higher risk of teen smoking]]>
Some previous research has found adolescents who try e-cigarettes may be more likely to transition to traditional cigarettes than their peers who haven’t used the devices. The current study focused on teens who reported vaping recently to see if the amount of nicotine in their “e-liquid” influenced their use of e-cigarettes and traditional cigarettes over the next six months.

The adolescents who started out using e-liquid with high nicotine levels were more than twice as likely to regularly smoke traditional cigarettes by the end of the study as vapers who used nicotine-free liquid, researchers report in JAMA Pediatrics.

High nicotine liquid in e-cigarettes was also associated with 65 percent higher odds that teens would develop a regular vaping habit.

“The results of this study suggest that nicotine in e-cigarettes may be responsible, at least in part, for the association between e-cigarette vaping and later smoking of conventional cigarettes in youth,” said study co-author Adam Leventhal, director of the University of Southern California’s Health, Emotion, and Addiction Laboratory in Los Angeles.

“Because nicotine may harm the developing adolescent brain and increase the risk of attention problems and depression, continuous exposure to nicotine, even through e-cigarettes, is a concern,” Leventhal said by email. “Teens should not start experimenting with nicotine and tobacco products in any form.”

Big tobacco companies, including Altria Group Inc, Lorillard Tobacco Co and Reynolds American Inc, are all developing e-cigarettes. The battery-powered devices feature a glowing tip and a heating element that turns e-liquid into a cloud of vapor that users inhale.

The liquid may contain nicotine, flavorings, and other ingredients.

For the current study, researchers examined data on 181 students from high schools in the Los Angeles area who were surveyed once during tenth grade and again in eleventh grade.

All of the participants had vaped at least once in the past 30 days when they were initially surveyed. They reported nicotine concentrations for their e-liquid, ranging from none to as high at least 18 milligrams per milliliter.

Beyond its small size, another limitation of the study is its reliance on youth to accurately recall and report on what was in their e-cigarettes and how often they vaped or smoked, the authors note. It’s also possible that factors not measured in the study might influence whether teens developed more regular vaping or smoking habits over time.

Still, this study adds to evidence that e-cigarettes are not risk-free, said Thomas Wills, a researcher at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center in Honolulu and the John A. Burns School of Medicine.

Many people who try e-cigarettes don’t go on to become heavy smokers, Wills, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email.

“But even experimenting will increase your odds of becoming a smoker,” Wills added. “These studies show that if you start using e-cigarettes, even infrequently, you are stepping onto a slippery slope and it is hard to tell where you will end up.”]]>
10/26/2017 1:03:51 PM
<![CDATA[Top 3 YouTube vloggers]]>
Back in the day, YouTubers would create a second channel for their audience to show them their day-to-day life. This would help the audience understand the personality of the content’s creator.

Vlogging was created to allow the audience to discover another side of YouTubers. However, in recent days, some content creators have launched their channel for the sole purpose of vlogging and have gained significant numbers of followers. We are sharing the top three most interesting vloggers on YouTube.

Jake Paul

One of the most famous YouTube channels right now is Jake Paul’s. The ex-Disney star created a channel on YouTube that reached out to millions of audiences. He later created a squad known as ‘Team 10’ which consists of 10 individuals who live under one roof. The channel documents Paul’s everyday life, and has skits and pranks from time to time, as well as the behind-the-scene of coaching Team 10.

Sneak peek of BIZAARDVARK ON TONIGHT!! @ 9pm on Disney Channel!! @imethanwacker

A post shared by Jake Paul (@jakepaul) on



Casey Neistat

Neistat was one of the first content creators on YouTube. On his channel, he has shared all the struggles he went through in life to become a successful filmmaker. He later introduced vlogging to his channel in 2015 where he was sharing bits and pieces of his life.

so awesome that Jake Tapper is on the cover of The Hollywood Reporter!

A post shared by Casey Neistat (@caseyneistat) on


Jenna Marbles

With 17 million subscribers worldwide on YouTube, Marbles has gained significant popularity throughout the years. Her videos consist of comedy skits. After her audience requested she start her own vlogging channel, she started sharing her everyday life on YouTube.

Wednesday night I'll be on #kocktailswithkhloe on FYI, I made it really weird.

A post shared by Jenna Mourey/Marbles (@jennamarbles) on

]]>
10/26/2017 12:58:45 PM
<![CDATA[How to control your children’s use of smart phones?]]>
Using these devices should be moderated especially in the case of children, as the use of electronic devices such as mobile phones and tablets could easily turn into an addiction. As soon as the child is capable of holding a phone they are given one and then it becomes difficult to get them off it.

More than 30 percent of British children between the age of 12 and 15 admit they do not spend as much time doing other activities as they do using their phones, and in the United States some children have reached the point where they needed to be sent to special rehab centers to be treated from “Digital technology addiction.” According to the Independent, that is not the only problem, as their time spent on the internet can actually be harming them; a two-year-long study has shown that using Facebook is associated with negative effects on the general well-being of both adults and children.

1
Child And Phone George Hodan – Public Domain Pictures

That is why it is better if parents try to control children’s use of electronic devices to make sure it would not affect them negatively. Parents could try a few methods such as:

Give them a healthy alternative: show them the real world can be as much or maybe more fun than the virtual one through enrolling them in activities or come up with family projects where the whole family could interact and help each other achieve a certain goal. This would help them grow their communication skills and learn to take responsibility.

Teach them the importance of face-to-face interaction: when kids chat, they usually have no way but “Emojis” and typed words to know how the other person feels or interacts with what they say; observing others’ natural reactions helps one avoid hurting them and become more empathetic and understanding of their emotions.

2
Kids Klimkin - Pixabay

Be a bit strict about it: as a parent you know you cannot always be the nice guy, sometimes you have to take decisions even if your children will not like them. You can set a time limit of hours for your children to use the phone or log on the internet; for example they could be allowed only one hour of device use after school and if they exceed that time you can show more restriction or take away their phone for a period of time. According to TIME, this is called a Device Contract, something which is recommended by Yalda Uhls, assistant adjunct professor at UCLA and author of Media Moms and Digital Dads.

Control the device not your child: children and teenagers are naturally curious; it would be hard to expect them not to explore and try to find out more, but it is quite possible to limit their access to untrustworthy websites through settings provided by your internet provider or limit their internet use altogether.

3
Child And Mother With IPad Intel Free Press - Wikimedia commons
]]>
10/26/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Hadid sisters’ face off]]>
This is the second time we see the two supermodel sisters go head to head for the same award, while it was Gigi who took it home last year.

International Model of the Year, @gigihadid wearing @versace_official shot by @rankinarchive at the #FashionAwards 2016

A post shared by British Fashion Council (@britishfashioncouncil) on



Both sisters had a busy 2017. Gigi released her second clothing line with Tommy Hilfiger, a jewelry line with Messika and a makeup kit with Maybelline that sold out in just 90 minutes.



Meanwhile, Bella has been the front women for fashion giants Christian Dior, Bulgari, Giuseppe Zanotti, Nike and Nars.



The Hadid siblings, Gigi, Bella, and Anwar, were born to a Palestinian father and an American mother. The three siblings have skyrocketed through the fashion scene. They are now one of Hollywood’s most powerful families.

The British Fashion Awards 2017 will be held in London on Monday, December 4, and here is the full list of nominees. The nominees are chosen by the 2,000-member board of the British Fashion Council.

Model of the Year

Adwoa Aboah
Bella Hadid
Gigi Hadid
Kaia Gerber
Winnie Harlow

Designer of the Year

Alessandro Michele for Gucci
Jonathan Anderson for Loewe
Maria Grazia Chiuri for Christian Dior
Phoebe Philo for Céline
Raf Simons for Calvin Klein

Accessories Designer of the Year

Alessandro Michele for Gucci
Anthony Vaccarello for Saint Laurent
Demna Gvasalia for Balenciaga
Jonathan Anderson for Loewe
Stuart Vevers for Coach

Business Leader

Adrian Joffe for Dover Street Market
Guram Gvasalia for Vetements
José Neves for Farfetch
Marco Bizzarri for Gucci
Ruth & Tom Chapman for Matchesfashion.com

Urban Luxe Award

Fenty Puma by Rihanna
Gosha Rubchinskiy
Off-White
Supreme
Vetements

British Emerging Talent – Womenswear

Faustine Steinmetz for Faustine Steimetz
Matty Bovan for Matty Bovan
Michael Halpern for Halpern
Natalia Alaverdian for A.W.A.K.E
Rejina Pyo for Rejina Pyo

British Emerging Talent – Menswear

Ben Cottrell and Matthew Dainty for Cottweiler
Charles Jeffrey for Charles Jeffrey LOVERBOY
Henry Holland for House of Holland
Phoebe English for Phoebe English MAN
Samuel Ross for A-COLD-WALL*

British Designer of the Year – Womenswear

Christopher Kane for Christopher Kane
Erdem Moralioglu for Erdem
Jonathan Anderson for JW Anderson
Roksanda Ilincic for Roksanda
Sarah Burton OBE for Alexander McQueen

British Designer of the Year – Menswear

Christopher Bailey MBE for Burberry
Craig Green for Craig Green
Grace Wales Bonner for WALES BONNER
Jonathan Anderson for JW Anderson
Martine Rose for Martine Rose]]>
10/26/2017 11:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Ciara]]>
Ciara Princess Harris is a multi-talented American singer, songwriter, producer, dancer, model, actress and the “The First Lady of Crunk& B.” Very early on in her career, Ciara was a member of the Atlanta-based girls group Hearsay with her friends. Ciara later departed the group due to a disagreement with the other members.

Born to sing, Ciara roes to stardom with her solo debut album “Goodies” in 2004, which she had co-written with Sean Garrett and was produced by Lil John and Jazze Pha; who she refers to as her as her “music soulmate.”

Ciara spent the majority of her childhood on army bases in different places, such as New York, California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah and even Germany.

At the age of 31, she married American football player Russell Wilson, who is a quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks, and they have two beautiful children.

Another quote for the road:
“I think that when you carry a certain kind of energy, if you have, like, a funky energy that you hold within yourself, you just can't grow.”

We are The Wilsons!

A post shared by Ciara (@ciara) on


]]>
10/25/2017 4:15:44 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian organizations that promote breast cancer awareness]]>
Founded in 2004, Breast Cancer Foundation of Egypt (BCFE) is keen on helping women who suffer from breast cancer as well as encouraging early checkups. The organization offers its services, including free early checkups, group psychological support and life coaching, amongst others, to women across Egypt from all governorates.

Egyptian Society of Women’s Health (ESWH) was founded in 2005 aiming to bring “wellness to all women.” The organization supports low-income families in all governorates in Egypt by offering discounted mammograms and support groups for survivors.

Baheya Foundation was founded by the family of cancer victim Baheya Othman in 2015. Othman’s family realized how families struggle with financing cancer care. They launched the first free breast cancer hospital in the Middle East offering services like surgeries, mammograms and other treatments.
Founded by Yehia Abu Gabal, International Cancer Research Center (ICRC) offers care for cancer patients by hosting internationally recognized experts to influence research and practice locally.

CanSurvive was launched in 2009. It offers support groups to cancer patients, survivors, their families, caregivers and friends. The sessions teach people how to cope with the disease and educate them about the different types and stages of cancer.

]]>
10/25/2017 1:22:10 PM
<![CDATA[Armani plans transfer of stake in fashion firm to his foundation]]>
Last year, Armani, 83, created a foundation in his name which said he planned to lead for the rest of his life. With an estimated fortune of close to $6 billion, he is still active in what is Italy’s second-largest fashion group, but has not named a successor.

“What has been created is a mechanism that will encourage my heirs to maintain harmony and will avoid the group being bought or broken up,” Armani told Corriere della Sera daily in an interview published on Monday.

Armani’s does not have children of his own. His nieces Roberta and Silvana both work at the group while their cousin, Andrea Camerana, recently left but is still a board member. Long-time assistant Pantaleo Dell‘Orco heads the men’s lines and sits on the foundation’s board.

“Believe me it is horrendous having to decide what to leave, whether it’s fair or not, and every five minutes having to confront the reality of a man to whom something could suddenly happen,” he said.

Under his succession plan, the foundation, which already owns 0.1 percent of the Giorgio Armani holding company, will take a bigger stake, Armani said, without giving further details. The remaining shares will be held by his heirs, who can only sell their holdings to the foundation.

Management will not be given shares in the group, Armani said.

The veteran fashion designer said last months that the image of his brand might benefit if he picked a successor, who did not necessarily have to be Italian.

But although he said that he would designate three people to succeed him at the foundation, it still remains unclear who will replace him at the helm of the Armani group.

Armani said the foundation, which will also be investing in charity, will have the final say in case of hung decisions by the company’s board.

After a 5 percent fall in revenues in 2016, Armani said he expected sales to fall by the same amount both this year and next, but to start growing again from 2019.

The group’s cash position will improve to 1 billion euros at the end of this year, up from 880 million euros in 2016.
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10/25/2017 12:12:37 PM
<![CDATA[U.S. Halloween princesses make way for Wonder Woman]]>
Months after the historic women’s march on Washington and in the midst of the “#MeToo” sexual harassment outcry, Halloween 2017 is becoming yet another platform in the United States for women and girls to show strength.

This year’s most-searched Halloween costume is Wonder Woman, according to Google’s Frightgeist search tool.

Star Wars heroine Rey, the self-reliant young woman who shines as a survivor against all odds, is among the film series’ characters who rank in the top 10 children’s costumes for 2017, according to the National Retail Federation.

And, makers of homemade costumes this year are getting online tips for re-purposing pink “pussyhats.” They were worn by many of the hundreds of thousands of women who took part in marches in Washington and other U.S. cities on Jan. 21, the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration as president, to denounce his years-ago boast about grabbing women’s genitals.

“The year or more of sexual harassment scandals has shifted people’s thinking about what they want to become on Halloween,” said Barnard College Psychology Professor Tovah Klein.

“Costumes empower children - as in ‘I can be strong, I can be invincible, I can fight for justice.' And right now, with Wonder Woman and other characters, girls are embracing this strong side,” Klein said.

Raising her light saber, 9-year-old Abby of Maplewood, New Jersey, demonstrated her warrior stance dressed as Rey, a steel-colored cloth crossed over her chest, with pants to match her tunic.

“I feel more brave when I‘m Rey,” said Abby, a fourth-grader who has celebrated Halloweens past by dressing up as princesses.

“I like Rey more than princesses. She’s very tough. She’s fighting. She’s helping a lot of other people survive,” said Abby, whose parents asked that her last name be withheld for privacy.

More than 179 million people in the United States will celebrate Halloween 2017, spending a record high of $9.1 billion, with the largest outlay on costumes, the retail federation said.

To be sure, feminist-fueled Halloween costumes are nothing new. But this year, they carry a special resonance.

Trump’s brag about assaulting women, which he later called “locker room talk,” was made public when a 2005 video surfaced during his 2016 presidential campaign. A year later, sexual abuse allegations against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein sparked the “#MeToo” movement. Weinstein has denied having non-consensual sex with anyone.

“Strong feminist ideals, girl power, political movements” are pushing Wonder Woman to the 2017 top costume purchase for girls, said AnnaMarie McConnell, vice president of product and brand development at Ricky’s NYC, a beauty supply store that features Halloween costumes.In Sheridan, Wyoming, Jennie Way said her daughter Marley, 4, chose to dress up as Wonder Woman and daughter Vivian, 8, as Robin, a sidekick to Bat Girl, portrayed by their grandmother Deb Johnson.

“It’s about how we picture ourselves and how we picture other women,” said Way, 41, a married nursing student.

“If we see ourselves as strong, and if we see our mothers and our friends as strong enough to help us and to help carry us, then that makes the conversation move forward,” she said.

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10/25/2017 12:08:53 PM
<![CDATA[Origin of Halloween pumpkin: the myth of Stingy Jack]]>
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Rankin Bass Jack O' Lantern Chris Bryant - YouTube thumbnail


Once upon a time far before Halloween, there was a man named Stingy Jack. Jack had more than a fair share of his name, and stingy he was; a drunken, mean and cheap old man who liked eating turnips so much and carrying them around with him, or he would steal them whenever he had a chance. Jack also liked tricking people and went so far as to trick the devil himself, more than once!

According to various versions of the story on the History, Mental Floss and Novareinna websites, he asked the devil to turn into a coin so he could buy a drink with it, and in return, Jack would give him his soul. But, when the devil did turn into a coin, Jack got greedy and kept the coin in his pocket next to a silver cross so that the devil would not be able to turn back to his form. Another time he asked the devil for an apple from a high tree in exchange for his soul and the devil agreed, but when the devil went up the tree, Jack drew a cross on the tree trunk, keeping the devil captive. In both times, Jack did not let the devil go until he promised that if Jack died within a few years, he would not go to hell and his soul would not be claimed by the devil, and the devil agreed to the deal.

Jack's time went by and ended with him confident that he avoided eternal suffering, but little did he know. When he died, heaven did not accept him either because of all his evil and wrong doings. Jack then went to visit his old friend, the devil and asked him if he could enter his realm. The devil told him that he will be keeping his part of the deal and will not let him into hell or claim his soul. Instead, Jack will now go back to the middle ground between what is above and what is below. He will be stranded for eternity.

The journey back to the world of the living was dark, cold and windy, so the devil gave Jack an ember from the depths of hell to light his way. Jack carved out one of his turnips and put the ember in it, like a lantern.

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Ember - Paweł Kadysz – Pexels


That is why Celtics called him “Jack of the Lantern”. They used to carve up scary faces into turnips and light them with coal toward him and other evil spirits off.

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Traditional Irish halloween Jack-o'-lantern - rannṗáirtí anaiṫnid - Wikimedia commons


But with time, Jack of the Lantern turned into the Jack-o-lantern. Turnips turned into pumpkins and coal into candles. And what was once a feared superstition is now merely a folktale lingering to a parade of celebration.

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Pumpkin -photo-214334- pexels


Jack used his turnip as a lantern and went on to roam among the living ever since…
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10/25/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Curly hair types]]>
Curly hair is not a one size fits all. Curly hair types are divided into three main categories: types 2, 3 and 4. Each of these is further divided into three sections.

The first hair type is type 2 or ‘wavy hair,’ ranging from slight waves to soft curls. It is in between straight hair and curly hair.


My Wavy Hair Routine by Joanna Dorian

Then comes curly hair type 3 hair which is everything from springy curls to tight coily curls.


Updated Wash and Go Routine for 3b/3c Curly Hair by Ashley Bloomfield

Finally, there is the kinky hair or type 4 hair. This hair type includes slightly visible curls to fluffy afros.


Quick & Easy Wash And Go For Type 4 Natural Hair by Chazzzisawesome

It is difficult to find out your hair type, but the sooner you find your hair type, the easier it is to style it. It is completely normal to be a mixture of two hair types, though.

Curly hair is necessarily drier than straight hair. There are different styling techniques but moisturizing your curls is the number one step to embracing your hair. In order for your hair to curl naturally, your hair must be moisturized.
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10/25/2017 11:27:58 AM
<![CDATA[Tawasol: a lifeline for Egypt’s underserved slum kids]]>
The population in Istabl Antar, and the neighboring Ezzbet Khairallah, has reached 750,000 citizens in 2016, according to the minister of education, and only one public school serves the district. Tawasol has therefore taken the initiative to offer children, and especially dropout students, an escape from a dreadful destiny if left without adequate guidance.

tawasol 1 Tawasol was first established in 2008 and aims to provide a safe, nurturing hub for children. It offers learning opportunities, vocational training, and a host of activities. It also offers psychological support and parental guidance, as well as a sustainable source of income for the children and the residents of the whole area.

“When I dropped out of school, I kept crying and stopped eating for a whole week, until my mother brought me here; and I learned in one week what I couldn't learn in years,” says Safaa, one of Tawasol’s most committed students, according to her teachers.

Out-of-school children include those who never enrolled as well as those who dropped out early before acquiring basic literacy skills. According to a 2012 study by UNICEF, the dropout rates for boys and girls in Egypt are 63 percent and 37 percent respectively, which is the result of many factors including family poverty, social norms, early entrance in the labor market, difficult family circumstance as well as a low quality of education which discourages families from keeping their children in school.

Such was the case for Safaa. “I was in primary 5 (grade 4), and I couldn't even spell my own name,” Safaa recalls. Joining Tawasol five years ago, she resumed her education, starting from scratch with primary one curriculum. Now she is finally set to take her primary education exam and pursue her studies at a preparatory school in just a few months. She is only 14 but she has a big dream to become a doctor; and she is quite determined to achieve it. She is also learning embroidery, which she is willing to pursue as a craft in her free time.

Tawasol NGO School currently hosts 150 students, who receive their education and a variety of vocational trainings without any cost from the family. As it is accredited by The Ministry of Education, Tawasol’s students can sit for the national exams; and upon completing the primary program can move on to a mainstream preparatory school. The children are also trained in different crafts by professionals and once they have acquired the skill, they receive a compensation for every product they make. The products are later sold on Tawasol’s online store and 100 percent of the sales go back to the artisans and the NGO’s development projects.

Tawasol NGO-Egypt Today/Yasmine Hassan



The children go to school six days a week, from Saturday to Thursday; three days for classes and the rest for crafts, vocational trainings and activities, Aliaa Abd ElAziz, Tawasol’s project coordinator tells Egypt Today.

Ghada, 14, has been learning embroidery for over two years. “One cloth might take between one and three days, but I am always very happy when I see it done,” she says proudly.

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Even when they enroll in a certified school, Tawasol keeps a constant link with its students. They come back in the afternoon for remedial classes, crafts workshops and for their theatre and circus trainings.

“I come every day after school .. I enjoy the circus training and Tabla … And I come to study two days a week,” says Hassan, 14, who has recently enrolled in a preparatory school after frequenting Tawasol regularly for six years.

The NGO also supports the parents and all ladies in the neighborhood through community classes as well as vocational trainings. “Some ladies get a monthly income of around LE 1,000, and they depend on it completely to sustain their houses,” says Fekreya Shaaban, executive director of the school.

We spent a day at Tawasol School and decided to follow the steps of the students. We attended a few classes, walked into the carpentry workshop and saw the children learn to use a saw and make marionettes. We joined them for lunch and watched how they are taught to follow the rules and be aware of their hygiene, listened to a beautiful musical performance and finally took the stairs up to the roof and watched young jugglers and unicyclists train for their next circus show, which shall be held on Saturday at the American University in Cairo’s Alumni Homecoming event.



Apart from its major role in developing the children of Istabl Antar, Tawasol also provides health care services for all residents, covers 50 percent of treatment and 90 percent of any necessary medical operations.

Um Yasmin, a de facto cofounder of the school and current inspector, is the key actor in this process. She accompanies the patients to the hospitals and supervises the whole process. “I have been working with Tawasol since they were first established … I helped with the case studies and we would go help people whose houses were in bad condition and even fix their roofs. Then, I started bringing in the children who dropped out of schools and convincing their parents,” Um Yasmin tells Egypt Today.

Tawasol is currently working on establishing a new school, which would accommodate up to 500 students and it is set to become an expansion of all services and facilities, including 27 classes, performing arts and activities space, library, workshops, auditorium, labs, a bigger cafeteria and a gym.

“We have the space and the capacity to start the new school,” Shaaban affirms, stating that the NGO’s biggest objective at the moment is to expand to preparatory and secondary classes to prevent the gap children feel once they go to a mainstream school, which could lead them to drop out again.

Tawasol’s products, all hand-made using locally sourced materials, can be found on their website (tawasolegypt.org) or Facebook page (Tawasol Egypt).
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10/25/2017 11:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[Miss Universe 2016 empanelled on Miss Egypt Universe 2017 contest ]]>
Coming from New York, Mittenaere made a stop in Egypt for a week-long tour.
In a press conference held in the presence of Huda Aboud, the organizer of the 2017 Miss Egypt Universe competition, Mittenaere said that she basks in the glory of the ancient Egyptian civilization and cannot wait to visit Egypt’s historical sites like the Pyramids, and Qaitbay citadel in Alexandria.

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Miss Universe 2016 posing and smiling for camera - Karim Abdel Aziz

“Out of my love for Egypt, I came here in support of the new Miss Egyptian Universe,” said Mittenaere; stressing the significance of the title in spreading the ideals of beauty.

Earlier in October, contestant Farah Sedky was crowned Miss Egypt Universe 2017, in the ceremony held at Cairo Marriott Hotel.

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Miss Universe 2016 delivers a speech at the press conference held on the occasion of her current week-long visit to Egypt - Karim Abdel Aziz

During her speech, Miss Universe 2016 playfully said “Tahya Masr” (Long live Egypt) in Arabic, recounting her father’s long standing love for the great ancient Egyptian civilization due to his work as a history teacher.

Given that she is a dental student, Mittenaere concluded by conveying that her long-term goal revolves around spreading the culture of dental care in the world; particularly amongst the peoples of the under-privileged countries.]]>
10/24/2017 12:41:23 PM
<![CDATA[A fifth of women over 65 in Europe disabled by 2047]]>
That is only somewhat higher than the proportion today, but ageing populations and increasing longevity across Europe mean that the number of older people -- with and without disability -- is set to increase sharply, researchers reported in the medical journal BMJ Open.

The findings are bad news for healthcare system budgets, as well as future households tending to elderly family members unable to perform simply tasks such as dressing or cooking food, the authors warned.

"We expect more people aged at least 65 years with severe, long-term limitations within the upcoming 30 years," said senior author Daniela Weber, a researcher at the Wittgenstein Centre of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria.

"This is likely to have considerable implications for providing supported care, and the training of healthcare professionals."

Previous estimates, based in part on self-reporting, have underestimated the proportion of the elderly who will be living with disability, the researchers found.

Drawing from surveys conducted in 26 European countries, Weber and colleague Sergei Scherbov adjusted the results for cultural differences.

"We took into account the various cultural and national influences in the self-assessment of the state of health," said Weber.

In Germany, for example, 27 percent of women 65 and older reported at least one long-term health problem. In the Netherlands, by contrast, only 12 percent of woman the same age made the same complaint.

Since the two countries have comparable health systems and almost equal life expectancy, the differences are likely due in large part to "subjective assessments," the researchers found.

Once such differences were ironed out, the study projected that 21 percent of women 65 and up, and around 17 percent of men, will be coping with serious physical problems by 2047.]]>
10/24/2017 12:24:56 PM
<![CDATA[et Beauty: Dark lips are back]]>
Red lipstick took over the makeup scene in 2009 and set the ground for a variety of dark lip colors including burgundy, maroon, brown and our all-time favorite, black.

This year, fun colors, along with our mentioned winter staple colors, are making their debut. Dark green and dark blue are taking over the runways along with silver, gold and orange. Here is a list of your winter staple colors: vampire red, dark red, burgundy, dark brown, dark violet, black, forest green and dark blue.

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10/24/2017 12:18:37 PM
<![CDATA[Sierra Leone to auction multi-million dollar diamond to benefit poor]]>
It will be the government’s second attempt to sell the 709-carat gem, known as the “Peace Diamond”, after it rejected the highest bid of $7.8 million at an initial auction in New York in May.

Over half of the proceeds from the sale will be used to fund clean water, electricity, education and health projects in Sierra Leone, and particularly in the village of Koryardu, in the Kono region in eastern Sierra Leone, where the diamond was discovered.

“There’s a reason God gave these diamonds to the poorest people in the world and made the richest people want them. This is Tikun Olam (Hebrew for correcting the world), this is making the world a better place,” Martin Rapaport, chairman of Rapaport Group, a network of diamond companies which will manage the auction, told Reuters.

The diamond, which the auctioneers described as the 14th largest in the world, was unearthed in Koryardu in March by a Christian pastor who gave it to the government.

Diamonds fueled a decade-long civil war in Sierra Leone, ending in 2002, in which rebels forced civilians to mine the stones and bought weapons with the proceeds, leading to the term ‘blood diamonds’.]]>
10/24/2017 12:15:56 PM
<![CDATA[Miss Universe France comes to Egypt]]>
The 24-year-old French beauty queen has been looking forward to visiting the country for a long time. Mittenaere came to Egypt to encourage tourism and to offer practical educational programs for children in Luxor such as pottery apprenticeships.

Mittenaere is currently a student at Lille 2 University of Health and Law, where she is studying dentistry with the intention of becoming a dental surgeon. Her mother was very persistent in encouraging her daughter to complete her education.

Through her degree, Mittenaere aims to shed light on the health problems caused by dental care negligence, among which are respiratory infections and cardiovascular diseases.

Miss Universe 2016 is keen on helping misfortunate children, and dedicating her time to visiting children at orphanages.

Mittenaere is now working with Smile Train, an international organization that provides surgeries for children with cleft lips and palates in underdeveloped countries.

Alongside her charity work, Mittenaere loves traveling and spends most of her time outdoors doing extreme sports like bungee jumping and skydiving.

Last summer, Miss Universe 2016 participated in Tour de France and cycled across France. She also participated in Ninja Warrior France where she had to dodge obstacles to reach the buzzer.

Mittenaere is also a very talented chef with French cuisine being her specialty. In her free time, she also jams to Beyonce’s music and watches her favorite film "Life is Beautiful."]]>
10/24/2017 11:41:25 AM
<![CDATA[Made in Fashion models graduate ]]>
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The Made in Fashion courses developed the skills of male and female models in front of the camera and on the runway. The course also offered a brief on the modeling life.

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Former organizer of Miss Egypt and Miss Eco-International Amal Rezk attended the graduation ceremony, alongside internationally-recognized fashion designers Shousha, Heba Edris and Hadeer Khaleel , a former Miss Egypt contestant.

WhatsApp_Image_2017-10-22_at_12.04.51_AM

The graduation ceremony was accompanied by a fashion show of both female and male models, who later on took part in a runway modeling presentation.

WhatsApp_Image_2017-10-22_at_12.04.56_AM
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10/24/2017 11:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Zac Posen]]>
Turning 37, Zachary E. Posen was born in 1980 and was raised in the Big Apple (New York City), the fashion capital and the city that sets the trends that the globe follows.

His mother Susan is a corporate lawyer while his father is an artist. His career in fashion was written for him in stone at a young age when he started to make ball gowns and then landed an internship at Nicole Miller's fashion house.

During his teenage years, he won a Scholastic Art and Writing Award; he then joined a pre-college program at the iconic design school, Parsons the New School for Design.

His talent for fashion and design was evident, just as it was also evident that he was guided by Richard Martin in The Costume Institute of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Posen also has a degree in womenswear from Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design in London.

In 2000, he designed a dress for the supermodel Naomi Campbell, and in 2001, he created a master piece gown made entirely out of thin leather strips, dressmaker hooks and eyes which would later be displayed in the "Curvaceous" exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

After all the hard work and accomplishments that he managed to attain at a young age, it is no surprise that Posen is the fashion icon that we know today.

Fun fact:
● Posen started doing runway shows at the age of 21.

Another quote for the road:
“I don't believe in one ideal beauty.”


Zac Posen Spring Summer 2018 Via Zac Posen YouTube channel]]>
10/24/2017 10:43:25 AM
<![CDATA[Facebook tests splitting its News Feed into two]]>
The Facebook News Feed, the centerpiece of the world's largest social network service, is a streaming series of posts such as photos from friends, updates from family members, advertisements and material from celebrities or other pages that a user has liked.

The test, which is occurring in six smaller countries, now offers two user feeds, according to a statement from the company: one feed focused on friends and family and a second dedicated to the pages that the customer has liked.

The change could force those who run pages, everyone from news outlets to musicians to sports teams, to pay to run advertisements if they want to be seen in the feed that is for friends and family.

The test is taking place in Bolivia, Cambodia, Guatemala, Serbia, Slovakia and Sri Lanka, and it will likely go on for months, Adam Mosseri, the Facebook executive in charge of the News Feed, said in a blog post.

Mosseri said the company has no plans for a global test of the two separate feeds for its 2 billion users.

Facebook also does not currently plan to force commercial pages "to pay for all their distribution," he said.

Facebook, based in Menlo Park, California, frequently tests changes big and small as it tries to maximize the time people spend scrolling and browsing the network. Sometimes it makes changes permanent, and other times not.

Depending on how people respond, two news feeds could mean that they see fewer links to news stories. News has proved to be a tricky area for Facebook, as hoaxes and false news stories have sometimes spread easily on the network.

The test has already affected website traffic for smaller media outlets in recent days, Slovakian journalist Filip Struhárik wrote over the weekend in a post on Medium.

Publishers might need to buy more Facebook ads to be seen, he wrote: "If you want your Facebook page posts to be seen in old newsfeed, you have to pay."]]>
10/24/2017 7:40:00 AM
<![CDATA[How to avoid the bridezilla syndrome ]]>
Here are six tips on how to avoid the bridezilla syndrome and get back to your own normal self for your big day, so that all your memories of the big day are good ones.

1. Find some time for yourself to get away from all of the busyness and people running around. Remind yourself that this is supposed to be the happiest day of your life so let it be and don’t stress yourself out.

2. When something goes wrong try and look at the bright side. If something falls and breaks try and laugh it off.

3. Remember that your wedding day will be over way too soon. Just breathe and take it all in and remember that everything was chosen by you; the flowers, the decorations, the cake, the food, the dress and most importantly your partner.

4. Stay organized and keep your to-do-list close by so that you don’t get stressed out over things that may have already been taken care of.

5. There is no shame in asking for help, that is why you have bridesmaids.

6. A surprise family member that you never knew existed shows up and there aren’t enough seats don’t worry, because others that were invited may not show up so there will be seats available.

As long as you stick to these tips, your special day will go smoothly and you will be left with great memories that will last you a lifetime.

via GIPHY

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10/23/2017 9:19:17 PM
<![CDATA[Tiffany & Co.’s first major fragrance in 30 years]]>


Eau de Parfum is said to capture the true essence of Tiffany that is love and beauty, in the noble iris bottle, which also happens to be the special ingredient in the scent. The full collection of the Eau de Parfum includes lotion, shower gel and a cream; all of which have unmistakeably artisanal scent identifiable as Tiffany’s. The packaging is nothing less than the iconic Tiffany & Co. blue jewelry box.

The cost of an Eau de Parfume bottle starts at $75 for one ounce.


Tiffany & Co. — The New Tiffany Fragrance Via Tiffany & Co YouTube page

The Tiffany & Co. brand was founded in 1837. it has always “celebrated the world’s greatest love stories” through simple, fine cut and beautifully styled jewelry, according to the company. Yellow diamonds have been a specialty for Tiffany’s ever since Charles Lewis Tiffany purchased one back in 1878. Being rare and priceless, the yellow diamond draws onlookers from all over the world each year to New York to get an eyeful of the diamond.
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10/23/2017 3:15:30 PM
<![CDATA[et Scares: Famous Halloween Traditions ]]>
Here are the most famous traditions which have always accompanied Halloween:

Jack-o-lanterns: The carved pumpkin is basically the symbol for Halloween worldwide; it actually started as a turnip, and according to mentalfloss, originated from Ireland as locals used to light up their carved turnips and roam the streets to chase off evil spirits

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Pumpkin - Rescueram3 Pixabay


Costumes: Originally Celtics wore ghosts’ costumes so that spirits roaming the streets would mistake them for spirits too, and leave them alone. But nowadays Halloween costumes are a big deal, heavily affected by Pop culture; you are more likely to see people dressing up as Harley Quinn, Joker or Jack Sparrow nowadays than good old ghosts.

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Hello, It’s Halloween - Zebra Nursery Rhymes - Kindergarten Songs for Kids/YouTube Thumbnail

Colors: Halloween is all about black and orange; as black represents the death of summer and orange represents autumn, according to mentalfloss.

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Pumpkin - Kristina Paukshtite – Pexels

Trick or Treating: It is said that another possible reason for dressing up as ghosts was that Celtics left out food for the spirits, and so some people would disguise as ghosts to get food and treats too. As for the tricks part, some speculate that it started back in Scotland as the poor “Soulers” would go from door to door on "All Souls day" saying prayers (souling) for the dead and receiving food in return. Later on, the prayers were gradually replaced by songs, jokes or tricks.

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Potion - Socialneuron - Pixabay

Horror films: This is a modern day tradition to entertain and thrill both children and adults; a perfect Halloween would not go by without a story where its characters go through some of the most horrible events ever.

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Hands - Simonwijers - Pixabay

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10/23/2017 12:20:30 PM
<![CDATA[Do fewer patients die with female surgeons?]]>
Researchers examined data on 104,630 patients who underwent a variety of common procedures with a total of 3,314 different surgeons, including 774 females and 2,540 males.

Overall, patients treated by female surgeons were 12 percent less likely to die within 30 days, and they had similar complications rates and repeat hospital admissions, the study found.

“There are reasons to believe why female surgeons may have had these outcomes,” said senior study author Dr. Raj Satkunasivam, a researcher and surgeon at Houston Methodist Hospital.

“Surgery is a highly male dominated profession so that the cohort of females truly represents the ‘best of the best’ proportionately more skilled, motivated, and harder working surgeons who have had to perhaps pass a ‘higher bar’ to succeed,” Satkunasivam said by email.

Because the study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how surgeons’ sex influences patient outcomes, however, it’s possible that factors such as the complexity of individual cases might have influenced the results, Satkunasivam noted.

Still, the study should help dispel any biases against female surgeons in the medical profession, since the women clearly didn’t perform worse than the men, Satkunasivam and colleagues note in the BMJ.

The study focused on outcomes for 25 common procedures including a variety of heart operations, weight-loss surgeries, knee and hip replacements, and cancer treatments.

Overall, 11.1 percent of patients treated by female surgeons died, experienced serious complications or had repeat admissions to the hospital within 30 days of their operations, compared to 11.3 percent with male surgeons, the study found.

This translated into 4 percent lower odds of either death, complications or repeat admissions with female surgeons.

Researchers also accounted for differences in outcomes for procedures that were scheduled in advance, when patients can often choose their surgeon, and emergency operations, when patients typically do not make this choice.

One limitation of the study is that researchers lacked some data on patients that might impact their odds of death or complications, such as other medical problems or socioeconomic factors like income.

While the findings should dispel any lingering biases against female surgeons, it’s unlikely that the sex of the surgeon would be a good way to predict how well patients will do after their operations, Derek Alderson, president of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, and past-president Clare Marx write in an accompanying editorial.

However, the results do support giving female surgeons the same career opportunities as their male counterparts, said Dr. Heather Logghe, author of a separate accompanying editorial and a researcher at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia.

“Given the historical exclusion of women from surgical training and today’s glass ceiling in terms of leadership positions, academic promotion, and pay equity among surgeons, this study is hugely impactful,” Logghe said by email. “It demonstrates that based on clinical outcomes there should be parity in leadership, promotion, and pay for women surgeons.”

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10/23/2017 11:32:41 AM
<![CDATA[With time, shoe inserts may help ease plantar heel pain]]>
Plantar heel pain is one of the most common foot ailments, affecting about 4 percent of the population and an even higher proportion of elderly people and athletes, researchers note in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. Many doctors recommend shoe inserts to ease this pain by supporting the arches and taking pressure off the heel, but research to date has been inconclusive about the effectiveness of this approach.

For the current study, researchers analyzed data from 19 previously published studies with a total of 1,660 participants. They found moderate-quality evidence that orthotic shoe inserts worked better than sham inserts at reducing pain after people had worn them for a bit - from about 7 to 12 weeks of use.

For this same time frame, customized orthotics appeared a bit better at easing pain than prefabricated versions, but the difference was too small to rule out the possibility that it was due to chance, the study also found.

“Our finding that foot orthoses can effectively reduce pain suggests that they are a valid treatment option for plantar heel pain,” said lead study author Glen Whittaker, a podiatry researcher at La Trobe University in Victoria, Australia.

“Furthermore, because we found that contoured prefabricated foot orthoses are as effective for plantar heel pain as customized foot orthoses, prefabricated foot orthoses should be used initially rather than customized foot orthoses because they cost less and are immediately available,” Whittaker said by email.

The most common cause of heel pain is what’s known as plantar fasciitis, which occurs when the ligament connecting the heel bone to the toes gets strained, weakened, swollen and irritated or inflamed.

Shoe inserts may reduce plantar heel pain by redistributing pressure away from the bottom of the heel to the arch, and may also prevent the arch from dropping, which could reduce tension in the plantar fascia, Whittaker said.

Foot orthotics didn’t appear to help ease pain or improve function after up to 6 weeks of use, or beyond 12 weeks of use, the study also found.

This suggests that patients who want to try orthotics might want to initially use them in conjunction with medication to ease pain and inflammation, Whittaker said. Other treatment options include getting corticosteroid injections or using tape or a brace on the foot to relieve pressure on the heel.

One limitation of the study is that it didn’t include data focused specifically on sports-related pain, so it’s unclear if the results would apply to athletes, the authors note.

It’s also possible that some people could get little or no benefit from using the shoe inserts, the authors also conclude.

“The main take-home message for patients is that the evidence for relief of plantar heel pain by orthotic treatment is weak,” said Peter Cavanagh, a researcher in orthopedics and sports medicine at the University of Washington in Seattle who wasn’t involved in the study.

“Thus, their level of expectation for a cure of plantar heel pain by using orthotics should be moderate,” Cavanagh said by email.

While it may make sense for patients to try over-the-counter prefabricated shoe inserts before spending more on custom versions, it’s also possible that seeing a health care provider first might help people get a device that’s better suited to the shape of their foot, Cavanagh added.

“Patients often try many different therapies sequentially or simultaneously,” Cavanagh said. “Orthotics can reasonably be considered to be one of them.”

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10/23/2017 11:30:28 AM
<![CDATA[Brie trade agreement: China lifts soft cheese ban]]>
From early September, businesses in the country were forbidden from importing cheeses made with certain moulds and bacteria.

The ban was lifted following meetings last week between European Commission representatives and Chinese quarantine and health officials, the EU's China delegation said in a statement.

The National Health and Family Planning Commission issued a note to customs authorities clarifying that bacterial cultures used for the production of these cheeses were not harmful to consumers' health, thus allowing trade to resume, according to the delegation.

The statement added that China's cheese quality standards are "outdated," and the delegation and French embassy will organise a seminar with Chinese experts to "(limit) the risk of such events re-occurring in the future".

Axel Moreaux, manager at French restaurant Paradox in Beijing, celebrated the news.

"The ban was in place for a short time, so it hasn't affected our business. Now we can go ahead as normal," he told AFP.

"It's a real relief," said Vincent Marion, co-founder of Cheese Republic, one of China's leading online cheesemongers.

"It is now written in black and white that this category of cheese is legally importable. So it is very positive for the French and European dairy industry," Marion said.

The European Union Chamber of Commerce in China previously said efforts were underway to revise China's national food safety standards for cheese.

It is unclear why the ban was put into place.

China has seen a series of scandals over food safety but Western products are widely seen as made to higher standards.

Dairy products are not a typical part of a Chinese diet, but in recent years cheeses such as mozzarella have become popular as more Chinese hanker after Western dishes such as pizza.

Strongly flavoured mould-ripened cheese is usually only available at restaurants and markets that cater to foreigners.

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10/23/2017 11:23:28 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Ryan Reynolds]]>Ryan Rodney Reynolds, also know now as Deadpool, was born on October 23, 1976.

The Canadian-born actor’s career started in 1990 when he starred in the Nickleodeon show “Fifteen,” he later acted in several shows until he came into the spotlight after his role in the hit “Van Wilder.”

Reynolds has played several comic-book roles, one of which was “Blade: Trinity 2004.” His role in ”X-Men Origins: Wolverine 2009” would then continue into the Deadpool saga. The only DC Comics role he had was his portrayal of Hal Jordan (Green Lantern), he later mentioned in interviews that the film's failure, critically and financially, came as a huge relief because he did not want to play Hal Jordan once again.

He found a comic where “Deadpool” describes himself as looking like "Ryan Reynolds crossed with a Shar-Pei" and then, Reynolds instantly fell in love with the character.

Another quote for the road:
“I think you have to let go of this idea that you can be precious about everything, and let it be the abstract mess that it is.”


Here are a few of Reynolds finest Twitter moments about parenting :












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10/23/2017 9:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[Five breast cancer myths you should be aware of]]>
Marking this important awareness-raising month, we present to you this information on five of the most circulated myths about the disease.

Myth #1: Drinking milk (or dairy) causes breast cancer

Some early studies raised concerns about the correlation between drinking milk from cows treated with hormones and the risk of cancer. The truth is that over many decades, studies failed to find a clear link and have shown that dairy consumption does not increase the risk of cancer, according to the American Cancer Society.

Moreover, the International Journal of Epidemiology published in 2002 the results of 20 studies on the relationship between dairy and increased risk of cancer. All the studies showed that there is no significant association between intakes of total dairy fluids or solids and breast cancer.

Myth #2: Antiperspirants and deodorants cause breast cancer

The truth is that there is no conclusive evidence on links between the use of underarm antiperspirants or deodorants and the subsequent development of breast cancer, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI).

Some people have concerns that deodorants and antiperspirants block the body from sweating toxin which might build up in the lymph glands under the armpit causing breast cancer. But the human body has several other ways of disposing of toxins that do not involve the lymph glands. Furthermore, the “Breast Cancer Care” initiative explained there is also no evidence ingredients used in deodorants and antiperspirants like aluminum or parabens cause breast cancer.

Myth #3: Finding a lump in your breast means you have breast cancer

The truth is that only a small percentage of breast lumps are cancer. However, it is very important to see a physician for a clinical breast exam if you notice a persistent lump in the breast or any changes in breast tissue. A physician is the only one who can determine whether this lump or change is of concern or not. Furthermore, it is essential to keep the habit of performing routine breast self-exams and getting an annual clinical breast exam, including scheduling routine mammograms.

Myth #4: Men do not get breast cancer, it is a women’s only disease

While the percentage of breast cancer occurrence is small among men, they are also affected by the disease. In fact, breast cancer leads to higher mortality among men compared to women as a result of the lack of awareness that they can also be affected by the disease, which leads to delay in seeking treatment.

Men should also check themselves periodically by doing a breast self-exam in the shower to discover any hard lump underneath the nipple and areola so that they can report these changes to their physicians.

Myth #5: A mammogram can cause breast cancer to spread

The truth is that any breast compression while getting a mammogram cannot cause cancer to spread. Also, the benefits of mammograms outweigh the potential harm from radiation exposure as they require very small doses of radiation, according to the National Cancer Institute.

The standard recommendation is an annual mammographic screening for women and men, in addition to any other recommendation by the physician.

Myth #6: Breast cancer is contagious

Breast cancer cannot transfer to someone else’s body. The disease results of uncontrolled cell growth of mutated cells that begin to spread into other tissues within the breast. Everyone can reduce their risk of being affected by the disease by practicing a healthy lifestyle and being aware of the risk factors and following an early detection routine.

There are some things that can help us avoid breast cancer like keeping a healthy weight, paying attention to your alcohol consumption, stop smoking and keeping active. While there are some factors that we cannot control like aging and exposure to high levels of radiation can increase the risk of breast cancer.

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10/22/2017 9:57:13 PM