Three Minute Public Comment Made By Attorney Charles Berger At EVSC Board Meeting

first_imgThree Minute Public Comment Made By Attorney Charles Berger At EVSC Board MeetingI introduced myself and explained I had sent a letter on October 1, 2019, to President Karen Ragland requesting a place on the Meeting Agenda to be able to address the Board so we could communicate since in the Public session there is no discussion or feedback from the Board, just the Board members sitting their silent.I then discussed the fact that the Executive Sessions for each meeting last approximately twice as long as the public meeting which is contrary to the intent of the Indiana Open Door statute and the EVSC’s own policy of creating an atmosphere open communication with the citizens they serve. I suggested they should be addressing changes to change this or it might be changed for them.I then focused on the fact that they have a “Good News Report” in each meeting. I suggested a “Not So Good News Report” should be added to update the public on the unacceptable level of performance of almost half of all elementary schools. There are twenty-two elementary schools and ten of them mostly from the underserved community of the EVSC have never achieved even a grade of “C” in the last four years. I had previously requested in an open record request the expenditure per school and was advised it did not exist as I had requested but I could search for it in the budget. I have not been told in communication from Superintendent Smith if it might be in the future.I ended by suggesting they explain why there is no anti-nepotism policy for the Administrative Positions. I also advised them that I would return.Sincerely,Charlie Berger FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

The bonus scheme bogus On what basis do you establish a bonus scheme, asks Tony Phillips, who argues that such incentives are not necessarily the best method of rewarding hard work

first_imgNever have I been able to understand or formulate a good bonus scheme.The more I have looked at the problem, the more convinced I become that they are simply not an efficient means of rewarding an employee or encouraging them to greater effort.supporting a hypothesisWhenever I talk to people operating a bonus scheme, it does not fill me with confidence that they are satisfied with their system. It’s as if they are trying to support a hypothesis, rather than find evidence against it.Bonus schemes, as used by big business and government agencies, are virtually always an out-and-out swindle – just a hidden way to give the recipients a sly pay increase, which they do not deserve.In our real world, let us at least be honest with each other; often we lose sales without any real errors on our part and due, perhaps, to reasons beyond our control – such as non-stop rain, the moving of a bus stop or useless double lines that stop our custo-mers parking and popping into our shops for a quick snack.Whenever this happens to us, we start looking for our own failings, as indeed we should, but often it is out of our control. So the potential recipient of the bonus loses out and becomes disgruntled.EPHEMERAL INCREASETwo years ago, I wrote that our retail stores were increasing between 10% and 30%, for no reason we were aware of. I said it would not last and it did not, as we ended up with about a 10-12% increase by the end of the year.Now, if we had had a bonus system in place, we would have paid out for nothing, and that’s my problem: how do we decide whether the extra profit is due to an individual’s performance or, as is more common, a team effort – plus at times for no reason or credit to ourselves. It just happens.Perhaps I could paraphrase John Kennedy and say to our staff: “Think not what your company can do for you, but what you can do for your company.”BASIS FOR THE BONUSIf you award bonuses based on increased turnover or profitability – say inflation is 10% and sales increase by 10% – who deserves the reward? And of course, it’s easy to inflate sales at the expense of profits.So the answer must be profit? No, go easy, the company may have negotiated a reduction on electricity, the telephone, gas or just plain property tax charges, without any intervention of the bonus recipient. Or the company might have lashed out a great deal of money on new fuel efficiency equipment. In my case, that would be my money and decision, not a manager’s decision.So after all this chat, we appear to be where we started, with no clear answer.Maybe the problem is insoluble – a bit like trying to convince my wife, Barbara, that, when I give her a new cheque book, it is not like a good book, which she cannot put down until she has finished it. nlast_img read more

Form: GMS1

first_imgComplete the GMS1 form to register with a GP.Print and fill in the form and return it to the practice you want to register with. The form can’t be completed online.You can also get a copy of this form from the practice.The user guide is to help GP practices explain the form to patients.last_img

Shining a light on quantum bits

first_img Researchers create quantum calculator Quantum computing, no cooling required In the world of quantum computing, interaction is everything.For computers to work at all, bits — the ones and zeros that make up digital information — must be able to interact and hand off data for processing. The same goes for the quantum bits, or qubits, that make up quantum computers.But that interaction creates a problem — in any system in which qubits interact with each other, they also tend to want to interact with their environment, resulting in qubits that quickly lose their quantum nature.To get around the problem, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Ph.D. student Ruffin Evans turned to particles mostly known for their lack of interactions — photons. This research was supported with funding from the NSF, the CUA, the DoD/ARO DURIP program, the AFOSR MURI, the ONR MURI, the ARL, the Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship program, the DoD NDSEG, and the NSF GRFP. Scientists coax photons to bind into molecules for first time New system could shed light on a host of complex processes center_img Working in the lab of Mikhail Lukin, the George Vasmer Leverett Professor of Physics and co-director of the Quantum Science and Engineering Initiative, Evans is lead author of a study, described in the journal Science, that demonstrates a method for engineering an interaction between two qubits using photons.“It’s not hard to engineer a system with very strong interactions, but strong interactions can also cause noise and interference through interaction with the environment,” Evans said. “So you have to make the environment extremely clean. This is a huge challenge. We are operating in a completely different regime. We use photons, which have weak interactions with everything.”Evans and colleagues began by creating two qubits using silicon-vacancy centers — atomic-scale impurities in diamonds — and putting them inside a nano-scale device known as a photonic crystal cavity, which behaves like two facing mirrors.“The chance that light interacts with an atom in a single pass might be very, very small, but once the light bounces around 10,000 times, it will almost certainly happen,” he said. “So one of the atoms can emit a photon, and it will bounce around between these mirrors, and at some point, the other atom will absorb the photon.”The transfer of that photon doesn’t go only one way, though.“The photon is actually exchanged several times between the two qubits,” Evans said. “It’s like they’re playing hot potato; the qubits pass it back and forth.”Piecing together the process: The microscope objective (the big metallic barrel coming down from the top of the image), the diamond sample (the small plate that looks like glass in the center of the image), and the optical fiber that couples to the sample (glowing green point just above the sample). Credit: Denis SukachevWhile the notion of creating interaction between qubits isn’t new — researchers have managed the feat in a number of other systems — there are two factors that make the new study unique, Evans said.“The key advance is that we are operating with photons at optical frequencies, which are usually very weakly interacting,” he said. “That’s exactly why we use fiber optics to transmit data — you can send light through a long fiber with basically no attenuation. So our platform is especially exciting for long-distance quantum computing or quantum networking.”And though the system operates only at ultra-low temperatures, Evans said it is less complex than approaches that require elaborate systems of laser cooling and optical traps to hold atoms in place. Because the system is built at the nano scale, he added, it opens the possibility that many devices could be housed on a single chip.“Even though this sort of interaction has been realized before, it hasn’t been realized in solid-state systems in the optical domain,” he said. “Our devices are built using semiconductor fabrication techniques. It’s easy to imagine using these tools to scale up to many more devices on a single chip.”Evans envisions two main directions for future research. The first involves developing ways to exert control over the qubits and building a full suite of quantum gates that would allow them to function as a workable quantum computer.“The other direction is to say we can already build these devices, and take information, read it out of the device and put it in an optical fiber, so let’s think about how we scale this up and actually build a real quantum network over human-scale distances,” he said. “We’re envisioning schemes to build links between devices across the lab or across campus using the ingredients we already have, or using next-generation devices to realize a small-scale quantum network.”Ultimately, Evans said, the work could have wide-reaching impacts on the future of computing.“Everything from a quantum internet to quantum data centers will require optical links between quantum systems, and that’s the piece of the puzzle that our work is very well-suited for,” he said.In addition to Evans and Lukin, the study represented a collaboration with Marko Loncar, the Tiantsai Lin Professor of Electrical Engineering, and Hongkun Park, the Mark Hyman, Jr. Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Physics.“We feel that these kinds of collaborations will create a backbone of the new Harvard Quantum Initiative for Science and Engineering,” Lukin said. Related Seeing light in a new way Harvard researchers create room-temperature quantum bits that store data for nearly two seconds last_img read more

Magazine founder speaks at SMC

first_imgAs part of Love Your Body Week at Saint Mary’s, Emily Raleigh, founder of the online magazine “Smart Girls Group,” shared how the magazine began and why it is important for all girls to be smart girls. Raleigh, a freshman at Fordham University, brainstormed “Smart Girls Group” one year ago when she wrote her younger sister a guide to getting through high school. The guide discussed fashion, peer pressure, classes and social life. “When I was younger, I used to dress up and say, ‘Mommy, do I look like a smart girl?’” Raleigh said. “So, when I was thinking of my sister’s Christmas present my senior year of high school, I really wanted to give her something meaningful and I decided to pull from this idea of being a smart girl. My family then really pushed me to get it published and pursue it.” After Raleigh decided to develop the concept as a magazine, she contacted girls from her community and elsewhere, she said. The group expanded from there. Today, “Smart Girls Group” is published once a month. The organization started college chapters, runs daily blogs and now has more than 150 contributors from 10 countries. “‘Smart Girls Group’ is all about connecting and inspiring girls from all over to be smart girls,” Raleigh said. “We offer a supporting environment that cultivates empowerment within girls.” She said the magazine and overall organization use blogs, articles and personal stories of high school and college women to provide girls with a healthy support network. “What is unique about our group is that all the girls who are writing or contributing to the group are high school- or college-aged,” Raleigh said. “You will not find anyone our moms’ age writing for the magazine and I think that is very important. When girls go on our website and read our magazine, they are hearing from girls going through many of the same experiences as they are.” The magazine covers an array of topics from politics to fashion to relationships, Raleigh said. It also offers advice on how to be a smart girl. She said being a smart girl starts with finding your “I am’s” and using positive language as an essential tool for breaking down barriers. “I think that being a leader and being a smart girl starts with how we speak,” Raleigh said. “When we say things like ‘I can’t,’ we are unconsciously putting up barriers for ourselves. Saying ‘I am’ and using positive language is the first step in being a smart girl.” The next step is finding your smarts, Raleigh said. “‘The Smart Girls Group’ helps you grab your passions,” Raleigh said. “We help you find things that interest you. I always had an interest in girl power and technology, and founding this group has allowed me to bridge those two passions. That is what we would like to do for our smart girls.” Raleigh said once a girl finds her passion, she should determine her goals and make plans. “Ask yourself what can I start doing today? Make sure these goals are something you can control,” Raleigh said. “You do not want to leave your destiny up to somebody else.” Raleigh stressed the importance of independent leadership and surrounding yourself with positive people. “You want to surround yourself by people that lift you up higher,” she said. “This means your friends, boyfriends, whatever. Find people that lift you up.” Raleigh encouraged those in the audience to find their own inner smart girls and set the world on fire. “Take your smarts and your passions to help change a part of the world,” she said. “There are so many ways we can all impact others’ lives in some way. Find your smart girl and set the world on fire.”last_img read more

India ups renewable energy target to 500GW by 2030

first_imgIndia ups renewable energy target to 500GW by 2030 FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:India plans to add 500 gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy to its electricity grid by 2030 in a bid to clean up air in its cities and lessen the rapidly growing economy’s dependence on coal, the government said on Tuesday.“By 2030 India plans to establish 500 GW of Renewable Energy capacity,” Anand Kumar, senior official at India’s renewable energy ministry, said in a statement. “India would have installed 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022 without taking into account large hydro and 225 GW including large hydro,” Kumar added.India, the world’s third-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, has pledged to cut emissions and have clean energy account for at least 40 percent of its installed capacity by 2030, up from 21.4 percent now, while looking to manage its energy appetite as its population becomes more prosperous.Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government changed rules for the awarding of renewable energy projects in 2017, leading to higher competition, lower prices and greater acceptance of renewable energy.But research analysts have been skeptical about India meeting its ambitious targets.More: India plans to add 500 GW renewable energy by 2030: governmentlast_img read more

Los Caballeros Templarios Cartel Kills Mexican Navy Personnel

first_img The three detainees admitted they “belonged to a criminal organization known as ‘Los Caballeros Templarios’,” Mexican Prosecutor General Jesús Murillo Karam told the press in Mexico City. On July 29, the Prosecution accused the violent cartel of ambushing Vice Admiral Carlos Miguel Salazar Ramonet, one of the highest ranked military officers, killed in the fight against drug trafficking in Mexico, whose funeral included the presence of President Peña Nieto on that same afternoon. By Dialogo July 31, 2013 On July 28, armed men aboard two pick-up trucks ambushed and shot the Navy vehicle where Salazar Ramonet, who died immediately, was with his assistant, 2nd Petty Officer Ricardo Francisco Hernández Mercado. The driver and Salazar’s wife were also injured in the attack, both suffered serious injuries but are “out of danger,” the government reported. In recent days, confrontations between security forces and Los Caballeros Templarios have intensified in Michoacán, where President Enrique Peña Nieto started his first major security deployment in May. Three members of the violent Los Caballeros Templarios cartel were arrested by Mexican authorities for allegedly killing a Navy vice admiral and his assistant in the tumultuous state of Michoacán (west) on July 28, where a local chief of police was found dead a day later. Salazar Ramonet, commander of the 8th Naval Zone based in Puerto Vallarta (Jalisco, west), was returning to the facility after spending the weekend with his family, and he was not in uniform at the moment of the attack, Murillo Karam said. The attack occurred on a rural state road near Churintzio municipality, northeast of Michoacán, after Salazar’s vehicle was forced to change its initial route through a highway due to a blockade made by protesters. The assassination of the vice admiral adds to the killing of four federal police officers murdered last week in a bloody confrontation against Los Caballeros Templarios, of whom 20 hit men were killed, and to the killing of a police commander in the port municipality of Lázaro Cárdenas, whose corpse was found on July 29.last_img read more

Bad Lip Reading At Its Football Finest

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Ok, so there’s this thing. It’s called “Bad Lip Reading.” I don’t know if you’ve seen it before, but if you have, you probably think it’s great.Just like if you’ve seen me before, amirite ladies?Anyway, the good folks at Bad Lip Reading usually turn their talents toward politicos, but this time, since there are no dimwitted politicos left running for anything, there’s not much fodder from that domain.So they have turned to America’s other favorite thing where people revel in crushing their opponents, football.Waterboy’s mom once said, in her infinite wisdom, “Foosball is the devil!” But I can tell you that today, foosball is not the devil. Foosball is the happy start to your day. Like a happy ending. But much, much different.So, to those who see an article with a video in it, and don’t just immediately skip down and play said video, who actually read the words, appreciate the prose and wait to be told to click play to watch the video, you may now click play to watch the video.last_img read more

Urgent Care Facility Opens at Closed Long Beach Medical Center

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Twenty months after Sandy, South Nassau Urgent Care Center at Long Beach opened July 1, marking the first step in replacing the barrier island’s only hospital that closed down after the storm.It’s a starting point for an island with more than 50,000 residents that only has one other local urgent care facility to treat patients suffering from non-life-threatening ailments and injuries, forcing more serious cases to be taken to mainland Long Island hospitals. South Nassau Communities Hospital (SNCH) of Oceanside opened the new clinic next to the defunct Long Beach Medical Center (LBMC), most of which SNHC acquired after LBMC went bankrupt this year. SNCH also plans to open a freestanding, 24-hour 911-emergency receiving facility, pending New York State approval—but residents are concerned it’s not happening fast enough.“Looking back a year and a half ago, I can’t tell you how difficult it’s been trying to develop the plan and a process going forward to bring a facility like this online,” Richard Murphy, president and CEO at SNCH, said during the ribbon cutting last week.The state Department of Health (DOH) helped negotiate the deal in which SNCH purchased LBMC in federal bankruptcy court. SNCH acquired LBMC’s land, buildings and equipment—but the LMBC’s nursing home, Komanoff Center for Geriatric and Rehabilitative Medicine, was acquired by another bidder.Once having a staff of more than 1,200, LMBC had financial trouble even before Sandy. LBMC officials had repeatedly said that they would reopen after the storm—they even received $20 million in federal funds for repairs—but they still couldn’t afford to fix the damage. It is the last hospital in New York and New Jersey damaged in the 2012 storm to still be fully closed.SNCH’s new $3.36 million urgent care clinic, which was shipped from Raleigh, North Carolina, was funded by a $6.6 million grant. The rest of the money will cover the reparations for staff, clinical services, equipment, supplies and other start-up costs.The 4,700-square-foot facility on Easy Bay Drive is equipped to handle head injuries, abdominal pain, orthopedic injuries (fractures), respiratory distress, heart attacks, strokes and lacerations. It houses 10 private examination rooms, two procedure rooms, radiology imaging and laboratory suites, with two ambulances bays.“If there’s a life-threatening emergency, then we will handle it, but that’s not our primary mission today,” said Dr. Joshua Kugler, chairman of South Nassau’s department of emergency medicine.Long Beach Island residents are concerned that the facility is just a small bandage on a major wound. Even though many agree the center is a step in the right direction, community watchdogs said that it’s not enough for an island that swells with more than 100,000 visitors in the summer.“We have to have a facility that meets the needs of the community,” said Pyllis Libutti of the Beach to Bay Central Council of Civic Associations (BBCCA), which has been calling for the return of a full-service hospital. “If there’s traffic, our emergency responders can’t get to us in time and we can’t get to a hospital.”Many complain that hours of the facility don’t work on an island that is also known for its nightlife crowd. The facility’s hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Friday and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.“I’m happy that this is here, it’s better than nothing, but it’s no way near what’s needed on the island,” said Barbara Bernardino, another member of the BBCC, which is still trying to push the process along. The group’s motto is: “Every day that is lost, a life is at risk.”Officials urged the civic leaders to have patience.“For those people who are very unhappy, we’re working to make it a 24-hour facility,” said Assemb. Harvey Weisenberg (D-Long Beach). “It’s going to happen, but you know we have to go through the process.”The planned 24-hour 911 emergency center will cost an estimated $220 million, which SNCH anticipates will receive $139 million in storm recovery grants for the new building.SNCH plans to host a forum with community leaders, the DOH, City of Long Beach and Nassau County officials for the development of a long-term plan. Among the problems facing the old LMBC are continued saltwater intrusion from Reynolds Channel, a need for safety equipment upgrades and environmental hazards such as asbestos and mold.Murphy, SNCH’s CEO, predicted that planning could take up to a year before repairs begin.“The engineering on this facility that needs to be done to determine its future will be a six-to-12-month undertaking,” he said.last_img read more