first_img‘It’s not my shame’: Why Filipino women are calling out sexual misconduct on social media View comments Duterte promises to look for funds to establish rail transport in Cebu ‘1917’ takes top honor at the Producers Guild Awards Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite LATEST STORIES Prince Harry: ‘No other option’ but to cut royal ties NBA: Westbrook’s 35th triple double powers Thunder win MOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextcenter_img Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town ‘Bad Boys for Life’ debuts so good with box office top spot Palace: Crisis over ABC-CBN franchise unlikely Toronto Raptors forward Serge Ibaka (9) lands a strike on Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez (8) during a scuffle during second half of an NBA basketball game in Toronto, Tuesday, March 21, 2017. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez and Toronto Raptors forward Serge Ibaka were each suspended one game without pay by the NBA on Wednesday for exchanging punches during an altercation.Ibaka, who was born in the Republic of the Congo but plays internationally for Spain, and US 7-footer Lopez were given technical fouls and ejected from the game after swinging blows with 3:58 remaining in the third quarter of Toronto’s 122-120 overtime victory over visiting Chicago on Tuesday.ADVERTISEMENT Ibaka will miss the Raptors’ game Thursday at Miami while Lopez will serve his ban Wednesday night when the Bulls play host to Detroit.Raptors assistant coach Jamaal Magloire was fined $15,000 for pushing Bulls forward Nikola Mirotic, who was born in Montenegro but also plays globally for Spain, and acting as other than a peacemaker during the same altercation.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnAt 42-29, the Raptors are on a three-game win streak and one-half game behind Washington for third place in the Eastern Conference.The Bulls, 33-38, are two games behind Miami for the eighth and final East playoff berth. Taal Volcano evacuees warned against going home Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Panelo: Duterte only wants to emulate strong political will of Marcoslast_img read more

first_img17 January 2014 The Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone, launched late last year, is already drawing strong international interest, with several lease agreements signed and a surge of global oil and gas companies negotiating joint ventures with South African firms, the Western Cape provincial government said on Thursday. “The Saldanha Bay IDZ Licencing Company has signed six lease agreements with international and South African oil and gas companies,” Western Cape Finance, Economic Development and Tourism Minister Alan Winde said in a statement. “These include firms specialising in oilfield services, oil rig operations, logistics operators, ship repair, engineering and market support.” Final negotiations for lease agreements are taking place between the Licencing Company and two international oilfield service companies and a South African rig repair firm, Winde said. “In some of the most exciting developments, the Licencing Company is in talks with an international consortium to develop a rig module building facility. We are also aware of a R200-million investment by a global oil servicing company which is set to create 300 jobs. Several leading international companies are increasing their staff numbers in their South African companies.” Winde said details on individual companies were bound by non-disclosure agreements and could not be released at this stage.African oil, gas service and supply hub A feasibility study conducted by the Department of Trade and Industry found that Saldanha Bay is strategically located to serve as a service, maintenance, fabrication and supply hub for the booming African oil and gas sector, due to the increasing number of oil rigs requiring maintenance, and their traffic flow passing from the west to the east coast of Africa. In October last year, German company Oiltanking GmbH entered a joint venture with a number of South African companies to build a commercial crude oil storage and blending terminal at the port of Saldanha. The company said that Saldanha was an excellent location for a crude oil hub, “as it is close to strategic tanker routes from key oil-producing regions to major oil-consuming markets”. Ideally situated for the blending of west African and South American crude oils, Saldanha “has the potential to establish itself as a global crude transhipment hub focused on certain established trade routes,” the company added. The Western Cape government has invested R25-million over five years in setting up the industrial development zone (IDZ). “This is the culmination of years of collaboration between all spheres of government and the Saldanha Bay community,” Winde said. “The IDZ has the potential to become one of the most important levers for jobs and economic growth for the Western Cape. Early indications are that it will indeed be a major catalyst for foreign direct investment and increased employment opportunities for our residents in the medium to long term.” SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

first_img8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Related Posts richard macmanus Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting While doing some research for a work project I’m doing currently, I came acrossthis illuminating PEW report from January 2005, called Internet Evolution: Adecade of adoption: How the internet has woven itself into American life. Thefollowing extract is from the introduction, entitled ‘Internet: The Mainstreaming ofOnline Life’. Here it is, with one comment in italic inserted by me:“The New NormalThe Web has become the “new normal” in the American way of life; those whodon’t go online constitute an ever-shrinking minority. And as the online populationhas grown rapidly, its composition has changed rapidly. At the infant stage, theinternet’s user population was dominated by young, white men who had high incomesand plenty of education [RM: not unlike the make-up of the Web 2.0 Conferenceattendees]. As it passed into its childhood years in 1999 and 2000, thepopulation went mainstream; women reached parity with men online, lots more minorityfamilies joined the party, and more people with modest levels of income and educationcame online.This transition altered the internet’s social environment. These early adoptersloved the liberation they got from being online. They liked the fact that they could getnews from nontraditional sources. Back in 1996, 56% of those who got political newsonline said they preferred the internet because they could get extra information that wasnot available from traditional news sources. At the same time, just 18% said theypreferred the internet because it was convenient. These early adopters wanted to toppleall manner of institutions and establish a new order in virtual space. They had a utopiansense of the transformative power of the new technology.The later adopters are not looking to this technology to overturn the existing order.They like the internet because it can make them more productive and more connected.Theirs is an unsentimental outlook. Like most later adopters of technology, they need tobe shown that there is a real, immediate and practical value in embracing the new.”What do I take from this?1) Web 2.0 is still in the 1996 era in terms of Internet take-up;2) perhaps some of us Web 2.0 pundits have been guilty of focusing too much on “utopian sense of the transformative power of the new technology”; aka the Bubblementality.3) the tipping point will be when Web 2.0 becomes convenient and practical for mainstream people touse – making them “more productive and more connected”. We’re still a year or two awayfrom that point, I think.It’s an excellent report to read and atimely reminder to us all of the context of Web 2.0, within the ongoing evolution of theInternet.center_img Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#web#Web Culture A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…last_img read more

first_img The interview process is about mutual discovery—learn as much about your potential team and organization as they are learning about you. (Large preview)Question #5“What are the three pieces of your product that are most valuable but also in the most need of an update?”Why ask this?This question is all about priority and, similar to the prior question, this could be digging more into the tech stack of the product. My reason for asking actually has more to do with the “core loop” of the product. The core-loop is the dopamine hit that attracts a user and keeps them coming back to enjoy the product repeatedly.It’s akin to the food pellet that makes a rat respond to stimuli. It can also be a prime pain-point that’s a massive trigger for catastrophic system failure, and thus ultimate fear within the team. “Don’t do anything to this or our entire system could shut down.” When considering some changes to that legacy system perhaps we simply leave it alone, but we might enhance it in another way leveraging something more modern as an overlay or in a new tab or window?What follow-ups might provide more insight?What is standing in the way of doing this work?What team members could we talk to about these features?Have they done any research to understand what’s causing the behavior to be erratic or difficult to maintain?What users can we speak with about the features to understand how they’re using it?Perhaps there’s a slight tweak that could be made enabling the same outcome, but putting less stress on the system?Are there small tweaks that could be made to relieve pressure on the back-end and reduce strain on the database?How is this question received?Similar to the prior question, this can quickly get technical but it doesn’t have to. I’ve posted the question to a hiring manager who also forwarded it to a member of the product and dev teams who all gave slightly different answers. As suspected, they all provided some overlap which clearly showed what the most important problem was to work on from the business’ perspective. Don’t hesitate to ask they forward the inquiry on to someone who might be better suited or could provide a more nuanced response. Gathering broad viewpoints is a hallmark of what we designers do well.Question #6“Do you have a customer I might contact to get their thoughts about your product or service?”Why ask this?This may be the boldest question on this list, but it provides so much amazing value as an incoming designer. If we are operating as practitioners of a human-centered approach, we should be comfortable talking to users and our employer should be comfortable ensuring we have access to them. Granted, you may not yet be a member of the team, and they’re not yet your customer. But putting a willing foot forward in this area speaks confidently that you would love to get first-hand access to customer feedback.What follow-ups might provide more insight?How familiar is your team talking to their users?How often does this activity take place?Assuming this customer is a fan of the company, do we have access to users who aren’t so happy with the product?Do we ever seek feedback from someone who has canceled the service?How might the team use any insights you bring back to them?How is this question received?This question is bold and can be a bit tricky. Sometimes the team doesn’t have a good customer in mind, or even if they do, they don’t have ready access to them as customers are handled by a separate gatekeeper. At the same time, I would expect most companies to have a short-list of customers who think they’ve hung the moon. The marketing department tends to plaster their quotes all over the home page so feel free to look for that prior to the interview and ask for those contacts directly.When asking this question, I’ve also provided the questions I was intending to ask as well as the answers I got back. With free user research on the table and an opportunity for the marketing team to gain additional positive feedback asking this worked out in my favor, but that won’t always be the case. Be gracious and understand if someone’s not comfortable providing this access, but it’s a strong play in expectation setting for a human-centered design practice.Question #7“What is your dedicated budget for UX and design?”Why ask this?If the value of user experience is wrapped up solely in market research, then the company doesn’t understand a human-centered approach through their users. Market research can certainly be valuable by informing the company if a business idea might be financially viable. However, user research can guide the organization in delivering something truly valuable. This question can help a prospective designer understand that the company sees design as an investment and competitive advantage.What follow-ups might provide more insight?What percentage of your overall expenditures does this represent and why?What is the highest-titled member of the design team?What is the education budget in a given year for training or events?Has this grown, shrunk, or stayed flat compared to the prior year?What are the growth areas for the design team overall, i.e. where is the design investment focused?Research?Visual design?Copywriting?Architecture? How is this question received?This is honestly more of a leadership question, but it can be tailored to even an entry-level position. Any organization without a clear operating budget for design isn’t taking the practice seriously nor its practitioners. Product, engineering, and design are the components of a balanced team. Funding one at the behest of another is a dumpster fire and clearly communicates that the balance is out of alignment.The easiest answer I’ve been given is the salary and position I’m applying for, however, that shows a lack of foresight in terms of both growth for the team by way of headcount, as well as properly empowering designers to do their best work. HomeWeb DesignTough Interview(er) Questions For The Job-Seeking Designer Discussions during an interview. You have the floor so use it to your advantage. (Large preview)Just The BeginningThese are just a few of the types of things we could be talking about during experience or product design interviews. We certainly should care about excellent visual design and elegant UI. We should absolutely care about qualitative and quantitative analytic data and the insights they provide. We should definitely care about motion design, user flows, journey maps, design systems, microcopy, and culture fit. These are all part of the playbook of any strong, digital-design candidate. But the answers to the above topics can be incredibly impactful for the first 90 days and beyond when assuming a new design role.You may not be able to ask these questions in a face-to-face discussion, but they make a great follow-up email after an interview. Or perhaps they’re questions you keep in the back of your mind as they’ll inevitably come up in your first few months on the job. They could prove very useful to guide a longer-term, strategic vision that empowers you to improve the business by crafting glorious engagement with both your teams and your customers.Does Asking These Things Actually Help Get The Job?I’ve been asked if these questions were helpful in landing a better job and truthfully, I don’t know. I did find a very rewarding new position as a Principal Product Designer, and I used these questions throughout the interview process. After I was hired, I spoke to a couple of folks who were part of that process, and they mentioned the questions, so they were at least memorable.The entire line of questioning has also resulted in the opportunity to co-author a book around using design to address organizational change and reconsidering how the field of experience design is currently defined. I would posit both of these opportunities were impacted in some way by these thought-provoking questions, even if the projects have yet to be fully realized (we are just starting work on the book, but it’s a very exciting concept).I also used the questions in interviews with several different companies and ultimately, I was able to entertain multiple offers. Through each interview using these questions allowed me deeper insights about the organization than I would have had otherwise. Did the questions directly help me get the position? Of that I’m unsure, but they were absolutely beneficial for both my own awareness and for the team I eventually joined.Final ThoughtsApproaching the job interview process more like a researcher gave me a very different perspective on the process. Interviewing can be a stressful event, but it can also be a mutual glimpse into a shared future. Any prospective employer is inviting a designer to embark on a life journey with them — or at least a year or two — and the interview is where the two parties really start to get to know one another. The answers to these questions can help paint a more transparent picture of the shared road ahead for both the designer and the teams they might partner with.Let me know your thoughts in the comments, and whether you have other tough questions you’ve asked during interviews. I would love to know how they’ve been received and continue adding to my own list!Further Reading“How You Can Find A Design Job You Will Truly Love,” Susie Pollasky“Facebook Changes Its ‘Move Fast and Break Things’ Motto,” Samantha Murphy, Mashable“Sprints & Milestones” podcast by Brett Harned and Greg Storey“Playbook” offers career advice for designers via crowdsourced Q&A“Dear Design Student” is a collab from some amazing industry veterans providing wisdom to up-and-coming design talent. #invaluable Interviewing is a great opportunity to get to know the company, take notes! (Large preview)Interviewing Like A ResearcherThe following is a list of questions that can assist in your evaluation of a prospective employer and provide invaluable insight into their organizational maturity in the digital product space. All of these questions can help to paint a more holistic and honest picture of the design process as well as the value that a talented designer might bring to an organization. Below I’ll share questions I’ve asked, as well as their intent, along with some responses I’ve received from prospective employers. Let’s dive in.Question #1“What are the three biggest challenges facing your business over the next six months? What about the six months after that?”Why ask this?This is on the ground information for any designer. Upcoming challenges should be readily apparent for anyone on the existing team, and they’re already considering how the person being interviewed might help solve them. Framing the question in this way can provide valuable insight into how far ahead the team is thinking and how proficient they are at planning. It also can help a designer quickly bring value and insights to the organization.What follow-ups might provide more insight?Does work exist in the pipeline that a designer can help immediately bring to the product through evaluative research?Is there a product that has been delayed based on initial feedback?What insights were learned and how can that be used to tighten cycles and quickly iterate to production?Is a project hemorrhaging funds from a past launch that didn’t grow as quickly as anticipated?Are there ideas of how to save this investment and help it become successful?How is this question received?This is honestly the easiest of any question on this list. It’s a bit of a softball as I would expect any executive, manager, or team member to have this information top-of-mind. That said, when I’ve asked the question it shows that I’m already considering the above and how I might be a positive influence quickly. I’ve consistently gotten great answers to this question, and it also allows for an open conversation on how a candidates’ particular skill set could be leveraged immediately once hired.Question #2“Should you be moving fast and breaking things or moving slow and fixing things?”Why ask this?Facebook popularized the mantra of “Move fast and break things,” in an effort to fail quickly while continuing to grow from what was learned. While fostering a culture of continual learning is enormously valuable, not all problems can be solved by creating completely new products.Continuing to cover up technical debt through a constant barrage of new features can be catastrophic. That said, many organizations are held hostage by successful products that continuously add features so much that innovation is completely stifled. It’s very helpful to understand both sides of this question and the value they can bring to a product’s design.What follow-ups might provide more insight?How comfortable is the team with the idea of shipping a rough Minimum Viable Product (MVP), to gain insights quickly?How risk-averse is the company or group or even the design team?Is the business dealing with a very fragile codebase?How frequently is tech debt refactored?How is UX debt identified and managed?How is this question received?This is a very thought-provoking question for lean/agile organizations and the most common response I’ve received has been, “That’s a really great question,” and the ever-popular “It depends.” I’ve gotten fantastic responses by asking this as it affords an honest reflection on the current state of the business. The design team likely has an opinion on whether they are moving too fast or too slow and if they should behave a bit differently.The answer doesn’t need to be a scary thing, but it should be honest and should afford some honest reflection. The best designers I’ve known appreciate hearty challenges they can dig into, and this question can provide additional clarity as to what you’re stepping into.Question #3“If you’re moving fast, why?Why ask this?Moving fast can be very exhilarating, but it may not result in productivity. To some stakeholders I’ve spoken with, the word “Agile” is synonymous with “I get my things faster.” In reality, being agile or ‘lean’ is about learning and delivering the right product or solution in the smallest way to customers. Moving fast can be very advantageous so long as it’s coupled with a willingness from design to show work that may not be perfect but is functional to the point of being usable. This is where moving fast is great; learning can be realized quickly and new product directions can be identified early. This can inform an interviewing designer on how data and research are being collected and distributed to other teams or the larger organization. Alternatively, if this isn’t happening, it could indicate a large opportunity for change or an unmitigated disaster so be on the lookout and follow-up accordingly.What follow-ups might provide more insight?Are you trying to break things and learn from failure, or just moving fast because of #things?Are you looking to gain mindshare in a new market?How is the growth being managed?How is the doubling or tripling of staff affecting team dynamics, agile health, or even the company culture?What plan is in place for documenting and disseminating learning that has been gathered?How important is this task for the organization and the work I do as a designer?How is this question received?This question and the next tend to be contingent on individual teams or parts of the company. I’ve also had it backfire a bit as it’s easy for someone to become defensive of their organizational behavior. One exuberant response I’ve heard is “We’re failing fast and failing often on our teams!” but when pressed with, “What have you learned from those failures? How has that learning been incorporated into the project and received by leadership?” responses were a bit uncomfortable. This is a massive red flag for me — honesty is tremendously important to me. Just be aware this can start to get into uncomfortable territory, but it can also speak volumes about a team or leader in how they manage their response.Question #4“If you’re moving slow, why?”Why ask this?Sites and applications are like rose bushes: if they aren’t pruned periodically they can get unruly and — eventually — downright ugly. Likewise, the continuous addition of new features to any code base without sufficient refactoring and paying down tech debt can create a very fragile product. The company may have started moving quickly to capture market share or breaking things in order to build quickly and try out changes to the tech stack.From a design perspective, the biggest experience gains aren’t necessarily from a design system or improved onboarding. The company may need to modernize the tech stack to focus on improved performance or application up-time. The team may need to make changes to their delivery mechanism providing some form of Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CICD), a system where a designer can more easily implement A/B testing and better understand where the most impactful changes might be made.Most designers would likely not give a second thought to the state of the tech stack because that’s an ‘engineering problem’, amirite? However, getting an up-front look at the state of the product from a technical perspective is immeasurably valuable, even to design.Understanding where the company is in upgrading their systems, what frameworks are being used, and how willing they are to invest in the infrastructure of a legacy product provides a glimpse into the company or team priorities.What follow-ups might provide more insight?Which parts of the site/application/product are least-effective?Should they be retired or reinvested in?How might these upgrades impact day-to-day work?Are new features being prioritized into the new product development so we can phase out aging systems?How will these changes impact customers?Can they still get their jobs done in the new system or are they going to be retired?How is that being communicated to users?Has there been any communication around sunsetting these retiring systems to lessen the burden?Has any analysis been done to understand how much revenue is provided by those users whose features are about to come to an end?How is this question received?This line of questioning has typically been handled offline as managers I’ve spoken to didn’t have the answers handy. They were typically fielded by an IT or Dev manager, who was more than happy to see that level of interest from a designer. As a designer, I don’t need to understand the details of my team’s API end-points, but I should understand something about the health of my digital product. Tough Interview(er) Questions For The Job-Seeking DesignerYou are here:center_img Posted on 26th September 2018Web Design FacebookshareTwittertweetGoogle+share (mb, ra, yk, il)From our sponsors: Tough Interview(er) Questions For The Job-Seeking Designer Tough Interview(er) Questions For The Job-Seeking Designer Tough Interview(er) Questions For The Job-Seeking Designer Joshua Bullock 2018-09-26T13:30:31+02:00 2018-09-26T12:29:21+00:00Whether you’re a multi-year veteran to the UX industry or fresh out of a higher education or boot camp style program, setting out into the job market can be a daunting task for any designer. From freelancing or working for a more boutique studio, doing agency work, or joining the enterprise, a myriad of positions, requirements, and organizations are available for a design practitioner who is looking to take the next steps in their career.In this article, I’ll present a list of questions from my personal experience to consider leading up to and even during the interview process. I’ll also include the goal when asking the questions, basically what you’re trying to learn, along with responses I’ve received when asking them of prospective employers.As with anything, your mileage might vary, but considering these topics before an interview may help you better solidify the perspective on what you are looking for from your next position. It is written primarily from the position of an interviewee, however hiring managers may also find them valuable by looking at their company through that lens and considering them for prospective designers.Recommended reading: The Missing Advice I Needed When Starting My CareerUnderstanding Design MaturityJared Spool and other UX leaders have written a few things about the design maturity of organizations and the ideal distribution of design resources. When considering taking a design position within an organization, how might we look at the company through this lens and better understand where they are on their experience journey? With numerous titles being thrown around (Experience Designer, Product Designer, UI Designer, Interaction Designer, UX Designer, and so on), what might provide additional clarity for the working relationship you’re about to enter into and the role you are about to assume?Having a few years in various design roles, I’ve spent time on both sides of the interview table — both as a hiring manager and as a prospective employee. In every interview I’ve been a part of, be it part of the hiring team or as an interviewee, an opportunity was presented to inquire about the team or organization. “Do you have any questions for us?” is the most common phrase I’ve heard and this presents a golden opportunity to dig deep and gain valuable insights into the dynamics of the team and organization you’re speaking with.Meet SmashingConf New York 2018 (Oct 23–24), focused on real challenges and real front-end solutions in the real world. From progressive web apps, Webpack and HTTP/2 to serverless, Vue.js and Nuxt — all the way to inclusive design, branding and machine learning. With Sarah Drasner, Sara Soueidan and many other speakers. Check all topics and speakers ↬When I am applying, I’m on the verge of entering into a new relationship, and to the best of ability, I want to understand where we are both headed. Just as the organization is investing in me as an individual, I am being asked for a commitment of time, energy, passion, creativity, and least of all artifacts. I would like to understand as much about my partners as possible. Given that no prenuptials exist in the working world, we may eventually part ways, and our engagement should be as profitable as possible for both sides.I’ve asked the aforementioned question many times of prospective candidates, and in some cases, the response has regrettably been completely passed over. The seemingly benign, “Do you have any questions for us?” opening affords any designer a wealth of opportunity to learn more about the company and design engagement. If design solves problems by gathering information, I propose we attend the hiring process as we would any other research effort. Related postsInclusive Components: Book Reviews And Accessibility Resources13th December 2019Should Your Portfolio Site Be A PWA?12th December 2019Building A CSS Layout: Live Stream With Rachel Andrew10th December 2019Struggling To Get A Handle On Traffic Surges10th December 2019How To Design Profitable Sales Funnels On Mobile6th December 2019How To Build A Real-Time Multiplayer Virtual Reality Game (Part 2)5th December 2019last_img read more

first_imgIt’s still illegal to grow marijuana in Missouri…especially if you don’t own the land where you plant the pot.Audrain County authorities this week charged three men with drug manufacturing and trespassing.Investigators found the grow operations in rural areas north of Centralia and southeast of Laddonia.The suspects are 57-year-old Lindall Keeter and 67-year-old Maurice Nolan of Auxvasse, and 69-year-old Robert Haynes of Mexico.last_img

first_imgA pair of old fishing buddies is now steering the ship at the Scripps Research Institute, one of the world’s largest private basic biomedical research institutes. Today, Steve Kay, formerly the dean of the college of arts and sciences at the University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles was announced as Scripps’s president, whereas Peter Schultz, currently a Scripps chemist and director of the California Institute for Biomedical Research (Calibr) in San Diego, was named CEO. Kay will be in charge of day-to-day operations, whereas Schultz will lay out Scripps’s long-term strategic plan.The announcement likely brings to a close a contentious chapter at Scripps, which has campuses in San Diego, California, and Jupiter, Florida. Just over a year ago, Scripps faculty led a revolt against the institute’s former leadership amid financial troubles and merger discussions with USC. The appointments also portend a new push aimed at marrying the institute’s historical strength in basic biomedical research with translational medicine designed to turn research leads into novel treatments.“It’s a very exciting move,” says Peter Kim, formerly the head of the Merck Research Laboratories and now a biochemist at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. In addition to running Calibr, Schultz previously led the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation (GNF), and has been a founder of eight startups involved in using robotics and other high throughput technologies to advance biomedicine and materials science. Before joining USC, Kay also worked with Schultz at Scripps and GNF. 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Phil Baran, a Scripps chemist and member of the search committee that selected Kay and Schultz, agrees. “I think everyone here will be relieved that we have icons charting the course of the ship, which will let us go back to doing science,” he says.The ship’s previous course got a bit turbulent. Last July, Scripps’s board of trustees called off merger talks with USC after the Scripps faculty revolted. The potential marriage was offered as a way out of the red for Scripps, which had seen a sharp drop in research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). USC at the time was flush, in the midst of a $6 billion capital campaign. The university also has a medical school, which meant potentially easier access to clinical research for Scripps’s stable of basic biomedical researchers. But Scripps faculty feared loss of autonomy and objected loudly to news of the merger talks. Ultimately, Scripps’s then-President and CEO Michael Marletta resigned, cell biologist Jim Paulson was named as an interim president and CEO, and a search committee was formed to find a new direction.An emphasis on translationThe centerpiece of this new direction, say Kay and Schultz, will be a long-term push into translational research. Like most academic institutions, today Scripps sticks mainly to basic research, discovering the molecular underpinnings of health and disease. Pharmaceutical companies, by contrast, focus most of their efforts at the other end of the drug development pipeline, moving potential drug compounds through human clinical trials into the market. The space between basic science and drug approval—the translational piece—has come to be known as the “valley of death,” because many promising findings never make it to market. Translational researchers must take promising early-stage compounds and go through a host of refinements to improve measures such as how long compounds last in the body and how well they move through the bloodstream, find their targets, and minimize their toxicity.Kay and Schultz say they plan to form alliances with Calibr and other institutes to ease the path for Scripps faculty to do much of this translational research in house. By doing so, they say, this will ensure that more compounds make it into human trials, bring extra licensing royalties into the institute, and, ultimately, improve the lives of patients. “If we are successful, not only are we making new medicines that can help people, we are potentially creating additional financial resources [for Scripps],” Schultz says.Scripps already has a strong track record for getting medicines into the clinic. According to the institute, eight compounds originally discovered at Scripps are now on the market, while another 30 are in various stages of clinical development. Those were developed, in part, as a byproduct of previous alliances in which pharmaceutical companies payed for rights to develop would-be drugs discovered at Scripps, as well as through the more traditional approach of licensing early-stage compounds to startup companies that then raise money to develop them further.That model, particularly finding institutional backing from pharma companies, “probably no longer works,” Schultz says. Today, large pharma companies are more averse to risking money on unproven therapies, and thus more apt to sit on the sidelines until compounds advance at least until early-stage human clinical trials. That forces biotech companies that license compounds to do much of the translational research themselves, something they aren’t always best suited to do.To make matters worse, when research institutes license their promising compounds very early in development, the terms of such deals often aren’t great for the basic researchers. The institute doesn’t get much money, and researchers lose control over what happens to their compounds, says Patrick Griffin, who runs a translational research center at Scripps in Florida. Many compounds then go on to fail—not because they aren’t effective, Griffin adds, but because companies decide to move in a different business direction. “If you can move a [would-be drug] along in a nonprofit, you can nurture it so it has a better opportunity to advance,” Griffin says. “Fewer will fail, and you will have more shots on goal,” of making it to market, he says.Those extra shots are critical, Griffin and others say, because 95% of all would-be drugs fail during development. When costs of the failures are added in, the price of bringing a new drug to market is well over $1 billion. That has not only caused large pharma companies to back away from early-stage drug discovery, but it has forced them to pursue primarily large-market blockbuster drugs for common conditions such as heart disease and cancer, while avoiding medicines for rare diseases.As a nonprofit focused on translational research, Calibr has already begun to change this arrangement in a small way. Today, the institute, which opened in 2012, has a staff of only about 110 people and an annual budget of some $25 million. But thanks to early progress on would-be drugs for neglected diseases, Calibr has already attracted funding from nonprofit foundations such as the Wellcome Trust, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Schultz says the institute expects to put four to six drugs into the clinic over the next year or two.Cutting costsSchultz and Kay plan to take more immediate actions to shore up Scripps’s finances. According to a July report by Fitch, a bond rating agency, Scripps’ finances are “stable.” But the institute has operated in the red for years, and has been forced to cover its deficit by drawing down its endowment, which shrunk from $430 million in fiscal year 2012 to $397 million in fiscal year 2014.One move that could save $12 million annually would be to replace nearly 37,000 square meters of leased lab space with two newly constructed buildings owned by Scripps. Schultz and Kay say they continue to explore an existing plan to raise more than $100 million to pay for the buildings. “That would have a big impact pretty quick,” Griffin says. But ultimately, he says, Scripps’s stability will be decided on how effective Schultz and Kay are in hooking together formerly disparate parts of the drug development pipeline, and how many would-be drugs the fishing buddies manage to snare in their net.*Correction, 18 September, 3:07 p.m.: This story incorrectly identified Scripps as the world’s largest basic biomedical research institute. It is among the world’s largest private biomedical research institutes.last_img read more

first_imgTamim Iqbal scored 95 to steer Bangladesh’s largest successful run chase in one-day international cricket as they beat Scotland by six wickets to keep alive their quarterfinal chances at the World Cup.Scotland set Bangladesh 319 to win Thursday after posting 318 for 8, an innings built around a record-breaking 156 of opener Kyle Coetzer. Iqbal’s innings of 95 from 100 balls, which was the highest by a Bangladesh batsman in a World Cup match, and his partnership of 139 with Mohammad Mahmudullah (62) established the strong pace that was necessary for Bangladesh to achieve the target with 11 balls to spare.Iqbal was out in the 32nd over when Bangladesh were 201 for 3, leaving a lot of work still to do, but he had cleared the way: Bangladesh were 191 for 2 after 30 overs where Scotland had been 152 for 3. Mushfiqur Rahim then spurred the Bangladesh chase, which was the second-highest successful run chase in World Cup history, scoring 60 from 42 balls.Bangladesh were a batsman down after regular opener Anamul Haque dislocated a shoulder while fielding and that made a solid and fast-paced start essential if it was to run down Scotland’s demanding total. When Rahim was out, with 72 runs still required, Shakib Al Hasan made an unbeaten 52 and Sabbir Rahman added 42 in an unbroken stand for the fifth wicket to guide Bangladesh to their second win at the tournament.Bangladesh have now beaten Afghanistan and Scotland and shared points with Australia in a washed-out match to take five points and stake a strong claim for a place in the tournament quarterfinals. But it has tough matches remaining against England and New Zealand and may have to win one of those games to ensure their progress.advertisement”Our bowlers haven’t bowled well but the good thing is the batters got runs, especially with a big match (against England) coming up,” Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza said. “We still have two chances. We will try our level best against England, if not against New Zealand.”The Scottish squad was disheartened to have lost in a match in which it set so many team milestones.Coetzer compiled the first century for Scotland in a World Cup match and his 156 – his second ODI hundred – was the second-highest individual total for Scotland in all ODIs, and the highest score by a batsman from an associate – or second-tier – team in World Cup matches.He reached his century from 103 balls, eclipsing the previous-highest score for Scotland in a World Cup match which stood at 76. Scotland had confidence of defending their total to achieve their first-ever World Cup win but the Bangladesh run chase was too skilfully managed.”It’s very tough to take,” Scotland captain Preson Mommsen said. “We did a lot of things right today but unfortunately we couldn’t put the full package together.”Unfortunately, we just couldn’t create enough chances to get 10 wickets.”Coetzer swelled the Scotland total in partnerships of 78 for the third wicket with Matt Machan (35) and 139 for the fourth wicket with Mommsen (39). Scotland’s total was their third highest in ODIs, their highest against a top-tier nation, and marked only the third occasion they have surprassed 300.last_img read more

first_imgzoom South Korean shipping company Korea Line Corp., part of SM Group, has decided to withdraw from the race for Hanjin Shipping’s stake in US Port of Long Beach container terminal, the firm revealed in its stock exchange filing.The company withdrew its bid after local media reported it may propose a joint acquisition of the stake in Hanjin’s terminal to Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM).Hanjin’s 54% stake in terminal operator Total Terminals International (TTI), which operates two facilities in Long Beach and Seattle, is estimated to be worth around KRW 400 billion (USD 342.5 million).The remaining 46% stake is held by Swiss-based shipping company Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC).Last month, Korea Line inked a KRW 37 billion (USD 31.4 million) agreement to purchase the Asia-US route network from Hanjin. Scheduled to be finalized on January 5, 2017, the deal includes Hanjin’s business network and client information related to the route and subsidiaries and logistics management systems in seven countries.California’s container terminal also attracted the attention of further two shipping giants as MSC and HMM jointly placed a bid for Hanjin’s stake in the terminal in early December.Following Hanjin’s court receivership filing in late August 2016, the company started selling assets to decrease its debt.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more