GOODBYE PRESOV Dainis Kristopans moves to Qatari Al Rayyan until end of

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Al Rayyan handballDainis KristopansQatar ← Previous Story EHF CL TOP 16: SG Flensburg VS THW Kiel! Next Story → US Dunkerque sign Predrag Vejin from BM Ademar Leon! Before his move to Belarussian team Meshkov Brest next summer, one of the most interesting lefthanded players in handball world, Latvian giant Dainis Kristopans will play until end of the season for Qatari Al Rayyan! A 217 cm tall right back said “godbye” to his team-mates from Slovakian Tatran HC yesterday night, after five and a half years in which he became most valuable member of the squad.As Dainis is only 24, his best years are ahead of him, from next season in Belarus. read more

DHB Cup Kiel against Flensburg for F4 spot

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The biggest handball derby will be played on the road to DHB CUP REWE FINAL 4! THW Kiel and SG Flensburg will meet in the quarterfinal match on December 16. Rhein Neckar Lowen will face one of the most difficult challenges this season – MT Melsungen, while GWD Minden or Bergischer HC will pick unexpectedly, one of the places among TOP 4 in German Cup:DRAW:Rhein-Neckar Löwen vs. MT MelsungenBergischer HC vs. GWD MindenSC Magdeburg vs. Frisch Auf GöppingenTHW Kiel vs. SG Flensburg-Handewitt DHB Cup ← Previous Story THW Kiel win in Kiel – RNL 12 of 12 in Hamburg Next Story → Jim Gottfridsson three months out! read more

Janko Bozovic is back to TV Emsdetten

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handball transfersjanko bozovic Janko Bozovic is back to TV Emsdetten. The 33-years old Austrian national team right back decided to get back to Germany after four years which he spent around.Lefthander is coming from Portugal, where he played at Sporting CP in the last two seasons.Bozovic previously played at TV Emsdetten between 2011 and 2014 afterward he got some experience from Champions League squads like Meshkov Brest and RK Metalurg Skopje.TV Emsdetten playing at second DKB Bundesliga and Bozovic’s arrival is a big step forward in their ambitious plans. ← Previous Story The best young line-player of Europe Luis Frade to Sporting CP Next Story → Romanian Steaua to join SEHA Gazprom League? read more

Marin Sego saves Pick Szeged away win against PPD Zagreb

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← Previous Story Nenad Perunicic to become Serbian NT coach Next Story → SG Flensburg Handewitt win first French-German battle in Nantes The Croatian goalkeeper Marin Sego is the hero of MOL Pick Szeged. The Hungarian team won the first match of the season at VELUX EHF Champions League 2018/2019 against RK PPD Zagreb 24:23 (9:12) in Osijek with 13 saves of Croatian goalie, who saved the last and the most important shot only 15 seconds before the end, when domestic left wing Valentino Ravnic jumped from his position to score equalizer. handballMarin SegoPick SzegedRK PPD Zagreb read more

US aircraft carrier steams in to Philippines as UN admits slow response

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first_imgTHE UNITED STATES has said relief channels are belatedly opening up to the typhoon-ravaged Philippines, as the UN admits it had not acted quickly enough to help survivors.While President Barack Obama urged Americans to dig deep and other countries upped their aid, the UN’s humanitarian chief Valerie Amos said the scale of the disaster and the logistical challenges meant that six days on from the storm, some places remained without help.“I very much hope that over the next 48 hours that that will change significantly,” she told reporters in Manila.“I do feel that we have let people down.”After criticism at home and abroad of China’s initial offer of a $100,000 (€74,000) cash donation, the Chinese embassy in the Philippines said Beijing will provide an additional 10 million yuan (€1.2 million) for relief efforts in the form of blankets, tents and other materials.Transport planes, helicopters, ships and medics are in operation or coming from an array of countries in the Asia-Pacific and Europe, with Australia now taking its total aid contribution to Aus $30 million (€20.1 million).Ireland has pledged €1 million to the international relief effort, while an airlift of tents, blankets and other emergency supplies, valued at €510,000 landed yesterday. Irish NGO GOAL has called for the Government here to increase funding. Taoiseach Enda Kenny said earlier this week that the country will respond “how it can” but that the country didn’t have “endless resources”. Survivors wait for humanitarian aid to arrive in Hernani [Wong Maye-E/AP/PA Images]On the ground in the shattered city of Tacloban and around the central Philippines, survivors are desperately pleading for the basics of life from food and water to clothes and medicines — and security to protect them from mobs pilfering what little aid is getting through.US officials said the aid operation was slowly getting into gear after daunting challenges posed by shattered ports, roads and communication infrastructure.The USS George Washington carrier plus two cruisers and a destroyer are due to arrive later today, and Washington has committed $20 million — roughly half for food and the rest to prevent diseases.The giant aircraft carrier, carrying 5,000 sailors who were diverted from shore leave in Hong Kong, will bring the capacity to desalinate large volumes of water.“The friendship between our two countries runs deep, and when our friends are in trouble, America helps,” Obama said in a statement.One US official said relief workers were now better able to distribute aid out of Tacloban airport, and that the opening of a land route had given a significant boost by connecting to a sea port.The initial effort was “a lot like trying to squeeze an orange through a straw”, the official told reporters on a conference call.This article includes reporting from AFP.Related: 100 tonnes of Irish aid due to arrive in PhilippinesAlso: Eight killed as mob storms Philippine rice storeRead: Filipino ambassador warned about typhoon devastation – last yearlast_img read more

Committee to hear about bullying on social media

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first_imgBULLYING ON SOCIAL media will be discussed at an Oireachtas committee meeting today.It is part of a series of meetings where the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Transport and Communications is holding on the challenges facing individuals, families and communities from the rise of social media, including cyber-bullying and online harassmentThe meeting will take place at 9.30am and will centre on the issue of challenges facing individuals, families and communities through the irresponsible use of social media channels.Giving their thoughts to the committee will be representatives from the National Anti-Bullying Coalition as well as Dr Jan Geiss, Secretary General, EUFORES.Chairman of the Committee Tom Hayes TD said they intend to raise with the representatives of the National Anti-Bullying Coalition the possible policies they envisage can be put in place to increase awareness of cyber-bullying and enhance accountability for the minority who abuse online channels.Committee members will wish to explore whether the representatives feel the existing laws are sufficient in this area and their opinion on the current take-down and blocking policies of the social media companies.Regarding EUFORES, Deputy Hayes said that national Parliaments have a key role, along with the Commission and member state governments, in forging a sustainable and clean supply of energy for Europe.EUFORES is an important cross-party network of European parliamentarians, whose core objective is the promotion of renewable energy and energy efficiency. We look forward to hearing more about its work and plans for its thirteenth interparliamentary meeting, which takes place in Dublin Castle later in June.Last week, representatives from Facebook and Twitter appeared before the committee, where they were asked about the mechanisms that currently exist for both users and non-users of their sites who feel wronged, to uphold their individual rights.The focus of the committee during the hearings is to explore possible policies to increase awareness of cyber-bullying and enhance accountability for those who abuse online channels.Committee proceedings can be followed live at this link.Members of the public can also have their say and make a submission on the issue.Read: Facebook and Twitter representatives to appear before Oireachtas committee>last_img read more

President Higgins congratulates Irelands womens rugby side

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first_imgPRESIDENT MICHAEL D HIGGINS has congratulated Ireland’s women’s rugby team for their brilliant Grand Slam victory in the Six Nations.The girls in green beat Italy 6-3 in Milan on Sunday and there was a jubilant message from Áras an Uachtarán shortly afterwards.“I want to congratulate our women’s rugby team on winning the grand slam in Milan today,” read President Higgins’ statement.“This is an outstanding achievement and one we can all enjoy with pride on our national day. “The team has performed brilliantly all season and their preparation, commitment and courage has been rewarded today.“This grand slam winning performance again highlights the ever increasing success of women in sport in this country, and without doubt will contribute to further participation by women in sport and will help gain the due recognition that women’s sports deserves.“Sabina and myself plan to invite the team and their officials to a reception in the Áras in the near future.”Is this the worst tackle in the Premier League this season? >last_img read more

11 companies who are really good at social media

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first_imgTwitter/SkittlesOur very own Irish Rail can send out a zinger if necessaryTwitter/IrishRailSmart Car USA do the mathTaco Bell own Twitter when it comes to getting involvedTwitter/TacobellIt’s even better when two companies are involvedLike Taco Bell and Old Spice:Twitter/TacobellOr Oreo and AMC Theatres (American cinema chain) IN THIS PART of the world, most companies stay formal when it comes to social media.  They’re factual and polite, and rarely delve into amusing banter.Elsewhere, that is not the case, in fact, some companies (we’re looking at you Taco Bell) specialise in it.Here are eleven companies who are really good at social media.O2 speaks their customers’ language and tingTwitter/O2Gamestop did the mothers of the world a solidFacebook/GamestopOld Spice is all man, all the timeTwitter/OldSpiceOreo use Facebook images to get down with the peopleFacebook/OreoFacebook/OreoSega says what everyone’s thinkingTwitter/SegaSkittles like to get involved in hashtag games Twitter/Oreo/AMCTheatresAnd perhaps most famously, Bodyform know how to respond to Facebook commentsFacebook/BodyformYouTube/BodyformChannel11 shocking cute reasons why you should buy a daffodil today>How cheated-on spouses get their public revenge>last_img read more

Heres who is in the running for the byelection after Patrick Nultys

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first_imgTHE RESIGNATION OF Independent TD Patrick Nulty means that a by-election will take place in the Dublin West constituency within the next six months.It is the second by-election to be held in this constituency during this Dáíl term after Brian Lenihan’s death in 2011 triggered the vote which saw Nulty elected on a Labour ticket in October of that year. He later quit the party over its policies in government.Though there are some suggestions the vote could take place within eight weeks, on the same day as the 23 May local and European elections, it is more likely the government will wait until it sees if other by-elections need to take place as a result of any TDs being elected to the European Parliament.Fianna Fáil is being widely tipped to take the seat but the strong left wing vote in the area, where the Socialist Party’s Joe Higgins is also a TD, is likely to have a big influence on how it pans out.David McGuinness, who came second to Nulty three years ago, is being tipped to run again but don’t rule out the party opting instead for Edward McManus, a native of Castleknock, and Lenihan’s election agent in previous years. Local area representative Jack Chambers is another name in the mix.The Socialist Party, which is more likely to run under the banner of Anti Austerity Alliance, will also be targeting the seat and local councillor Ruth Coppinger will put up a strong challenge.Fine Gael, who ran Eithne Loftus – ‘the only government candidate‘ – last time, may opt for a more high-profile candidate this time around.The party will be keeping an eye on boxer Kenneth Egan‘s performance in the locals. Egan’s fellow former Olympian Eamonn Coghlan is also being mentioned. Current Fingal mayor Kieran Dennison may also be in the runningLabour is likely to run local councillor John Walsh, a Trinity lecturer. Mary McCamley, who was co-opted onto Nulty’s vacant council seat, may also be in the mix with Michael O’Donovan another name being mentioned.Sinn Féin will also most certainly run Paul Donnelly again with the party unlikely to take the seat but looking to increase its nearly 9 per cent vote in 2011.The Green Party will run university lecturer and local activist Roderic O’Gorman. A number of independent candidates may also emerge.- additional reporting from Paul Hosford Read: ‘Too early to say’ whether by-election for Nulty seat will happen in MayRead: Independent TD Patrick Nulty resigns over drunken message to 17-year-oldlast_img read more

New regulator will restore confidence in planning system

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first_imgTHE FIRST STEPS have been taken for the appointment of a new Planning Regulator.At its meeting today, the Cabinet approved proposals for the preparation of a new Planning and Development Bill, which will establish a new Planning Regulator.Mahon TribunalThe establishment of such a regulator was the most significant recommendation regarding planning made by the Mahon Tribunal when it issued its final report in March 2012.Minister for Housing & Planning Jan O’Sullivan TD described today’s decision as a “milestone” in responding to the Mahon report.In formulating this proposal I engaged with a wide variety of stakeholders and I believe the new Planning Regulator will improve the quality of planning in Ireland, increase transparency and accountability and, most importantly increase public trust in our planning system. She said that “evidence-based, proper forward planning is essential for our country’s future”.The Planning Regulator will provide an additional and important check on the quality of forward planning decisions. In addition the new Planning Regulator will have functions regarding planning research, education and investigation. I believe that this reforming measuring has the capacity to transform the forward planning process in Ireland and importantly ensure that citizens have greater influence and understanding of the process.According to the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan TD, the implementation of this recommendation is another tangible reform that “will achieve the Government’s goal of restoring and maintaining public confidence in our planning system”.The independent Planning Regulator will review and assess all forward planning functions by local authorities– such as the drafting of city and county development plans. It will have the power to advise the Minister to reject or overturn part or all of a plan where it is not up to scratch, and this advice will be published, said Hogan.The final decision to act will rest with the Minister of the day, and the Minister will be accountable to the Oireachtas for his or her decision.He added that the new regulator “will bring an additional layer of transparency to the planning system while maintaining democratic accountability which is essential for public trust”.The Irish Planning Institute (IPI) has welcomed the announcement.IPI Public Relations Officer Henk van der Kamp said that in order to be effective, the Office of the Planning Regulator must be properly staffed and resourced for the long term. “Ensuring the research and education work of the regulator is relevant, timely and accessible will be a key challenge.”Read: Plans to establish independent planning regulator under Mahon Tribunal terms>last_img read more

Fake pope held in Rome for looking like John Paul II

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first_imgIf he had been dressed like Tutankhamun nothing would have happened.The performer has been working the main avenue leading up to the Colosseum in his white skullcap for weeks — alongside Roman centurion imitators and other performers — but police said they acted following an anonymous complaint.A vendor selling miniature Colosseum souvenirs on a spot overlooking the Roman Forum said he saw the man being detained on Thursday.“He was right here, near me. He was taken away by two officers in civilian clothes who were pretending to be tourists,” he said.- © AFP, 2013Photos: Giant statue of Pope John Paul II unveiled in Poland > Read: Benedict to move back to the Vatican, two months after resignation > A SLOVAK STREET performer dressed in white papal vestments has been detained and fined by the police in Rome for bearing too close a resemblance to the late John Paul II, the police said today.“The problem was that he looked a lot like Karol Wojtyla. He was detained for usurpation of title which is a misdemeanour,” a police spokeswoman told AFP.“The cassock he was wearing has been confiscated,” she added.The man has been released and will have to pay between €154 and €929 euros, depending on a decision by a judge, the spokeswoman said.Another officer at the station where the 55-year-old man was taken quipped:last_img read more

Emigrant centre warned Prioritise Irish interests or lose your state funding

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first_imgTHE BOSTON-BASED immigration centre which reported an Irish student to the immigration authorities and had her visa withdrawn, after she admitted to taking a second job, has been warned it must prioritise the needs of Irish citizens.Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore says the Irish International Immigration Center (IIIC), which  withdrew its sponsorship of a Donegal woman’s J-1 visa after she took the second job in contravention of the terms and conditions, may lose its funding if similar incidents happen in future.The Donegal student was working in the United States on a 12-month visa, officially employed as an intern at the expatriate news website IrishCentral, where she wrote a column detailing how she had taken a second job working behind a bar to pay her way.The IIIC later disclosed to the website that a member of its staff had been watching media coverage to keep an eye on any infractions of a worker’s visa conditions, and that it had withdrawn its sponsorship of the visa as a result of the woman’s disclosure – leaving her with no option but to return to Ireland.Website editor Niall O’Dowd had said it was impossible for any student to afford life in the United States on an intern’s salary and said it was “a new low” for an Irish outreach organisation to have “one of its own” effectively deported from the US.Body received €1.1 million in taxpayer funding in seven yearsThe matter became particularly emotive given that the IIIC has received significant funding from the Irish taxpayer to represent the interests of Irish citizens in the United States.It has received over €1.1 million in State funding since 2006, through the Emigrant Support Programme, in addition to the fees it charges from Irish citizens to process their visa applications.In response to written Dail questions from FG’s Andrew Doyle and FF’s Brendan Smyth, Gilmore says Ireland’s Consul General in Boston, Michael Lonergan, had sought a meeting with the IIIC’s executive director Ronnie Millar to discuss the incident.Gilmore said Lonergan had stressed how the Emigrant Support Programme funding would be provided “to organisations who continued to prioritise the interests of Irish citizens and Irish communities” – suggesting those who prioritised other interests would lose their Irish funding.The Tánaiste added that the IIIC had “since issued a public apology for the manner in which the incident was handled.”Gilmore further noted that the centre had offered “considerable assistance” to thousands of Irish citizens who had travelled to Boston in the last quarter of a century.In a statement posted to its own website in the last week, the IIIC recognised that it would have been “more sensitive” to have contacted the student’s host organisation to warn her about her breach of the visa conditions, before immediately telling her that her visa was being withdrawn.“The IIIC will perform a full review of the management of the J-1 Irish Work and Travel program in order to determine what changes should be made to ensure that our mission of providing support to Irish students and graduates is properly carried out,” it said.It claimed that the fees it charged did not cover its costs for administering the programme, and that it “cared deeply” about the Irish trying to make their home in Boston and across the United States.Read: Calls for inquiry after Irish immigrant centre gets J-1 student sent homelast_img read more

Opinion Giving pharmacists greater powers to help patients should be a nobrainer

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first_imgLAST WEEK, a first-time mother walked into my pharmacy with her sniffly and feverish baby. I was able to reassure her that it was most likely to be a simple cold virus that would pass in a couple of days and there was no need to go to her local GP or Emergency Department unless the baby’s condition deteriorated.The day after, a woman from the local area popped into the store for some advice about a mole on her shoulder. I could see that it had none of the warning signs to be worried about and that she didn’t need to see a specialist. Instead, I advised her on some simple precautions to take, and to have her GP take a look at it at her next regular check-up.The same day a girl was in with a rash on the back of her neck, I suspected it was shingles, and said that she should see a doctor immediately. She saw a GP that day who confirmed my suspicion, and she started anti-viral tablets. The prompt treatment gave her a much better chance of recovery with no complications.Another customer of mine – an elderly gentleman – has been a regular for years. In addition to dispensing his medication each month, I chat to him about his general wellbeing and fitness, and he regularly asks me for dietary and lifestyle advice.The stories of these customers demonstrate the breadth of services and supports offered by pharmacists in communities throughout Ireland every day. Pharmacists don’t just read prescriptions and dispense drugs; we also advise customers who come to us with healthcare queries; explain to them how their medication works; and provide general tips on leading a healthy lifestyle. That’s not to mention the many pharmacies that run “extra” activities, such as smoking cessation programmes, asthma clinics and weight loss initiatives.Unfortunately, the work of pharmacists – and the important role they play in the wider healthcare system – has never been sufficiently understood, acknowledged or supported by successive Governments.Cutbacks have directly impacted on patient careA survey of Irish pharmacists was carried out over the past fortnight by the healthcare software solutions company Helix Health, which sponsors the annual Pharmacist Awards. Its results show Irish pharmacists are struggling to cope in the face of recent cutbacks, and feel poorly supported by Government.Some 86% of pharmacists surveyed said Government cutbacks have directly impacted on their ability to look after patients. When asked about the challenges pharmacists currently face, 64% saw government cutbacks as their biggest challenge, with 28% believing it to be the increase in the number of customers in financial difficulty.In addition to asking pharmacists about the challenges they currently face, the Helix Health survey also looked at potentially enhanced roles for pharmacists. When questioned on what enhanced roles they would like to see for pharmacists, 46% of survey respondents said they would like to see pharmacists empowered to undertake medication usage reviews, while 45% of respondents want an enhanced role for pharmacists in chronic illness management for conditions such as diabetes.Giving pharmacists greater powers in relation to medication usage reviews and chronic illness management should be a no-brainer. Currently, our healthcare system is over-stretched, under-resourced and not delivering the type of tailored supports that patients need. If pharmacists were empowered and resourced to undertake medication usage reviews – as happens in the UK and other countries – it would alleviate pressure on GPs and ensure better outcomes for patients.Patients’ first port of callLikewise, if pharmacists’ role as a first port of call for those with minor illnesses was better promoted and supported by government, there would be positive knock-on implications for the wider healthcare system, as fewer sick people would go directly to their GP or an Emergency Department as a result. The Government has thus far failed to recognise the potential that exists for pharmacists to ease some of the burdens on the healthcare system. It is high time their range of responsibilities was enhanced, and the important role they play was acknowledged publicly.At present, the sterling work done by pharmacists throughout Ireland is acknowledged by initiatives like the Helix Health Pharmacist Awards. These awards – which take place each year – raise much-needed funds for the Pharmacy Benevolent Fund charity, and also present an opportunity to shine a spotlight on pharmacists doing great work across a range of categories.In addition to Helix Health, sponsors of the 2014 Awards include TEVA, Pinewood Healthcare, KrKa Pharmaceuticals, Lundbeck and JPA Brenson Lawlor.Fintan Moore is a pharmacist and the Chairman of the Organising Committee for the Helix Health Pharmacist Awards 2014.The closing date for receipt of nominations to the 2014 Helix Health Pharmacist Awards is 30 July. Further details about the Helix Health Pharmacist Awards are available at www.pharmacistawards.com and @PharmacistAwardRead: Bad heartburn? You might have Barrett’s OesophagusRead: ‘I’m very sorry’: Enda Kenny apologies over medical card ‘stress’last_img read more

GAA to wait for referees report on Dublin bite allegation

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first_imgTHE LEINSTER COUNCIL is expected to wait for the referee’s report before taking any decision on a ‘biting’ allegation in yesterday’s Leinster senior football final.Furious Meath manager Mick O’Dowd alleged that defender Mickey Burke was bitten by an unnamed Dublin player during the second half in Croke Park.O’Dowd’s claims are believed to centre on a scuffle in the closing stages of Dublin’s 3-20 to 1-10 win, sparked when Meath captain Kevin Reilly and Dubs forward Eoghan O’Gara tussled for possession.Referee Padraig Hughes from Armagh booked Burke, O’Gara and Meath keeper Paddy O’Rourke following the melee.Dublin last night remained tight-lipped about the allegations, made by an “extremely disappointed” O’Dowd following his post-match media briefing.“I just went back to the dressing room after speaking to you and saw the doctor dealing with his finger,” he said.“He’s gone to the Dublin dressing room to speak to the Dublin doctor because there’s a protocol to deal with.”Dublin manager Jim Gavin said he knew nothing about the claims when asked about it immediately after the game.Discussing the incident on the Sunday Game last night, Kerry legend Tomás Ó Sé said: “I think it should just be forgotten about.”“We couldn’t see [in the footage] but if there’s a hand around your mouth or whatever it is, what are you going to do?” former Kildare midfielder Dermot Earley added.Tyrone’s Owen Mulligan said: “If somebody puts their finger in your mouth, what are you going to do – blow it out?”5 talking points from the weekend’s GAA actionlast_img read more

Soaring profits for Ryanair but its not getting carried away with excitement

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first_imgIT HAS BEEN a bumper year for Ryanair so far, with the Irish airline reporting a rise in net profits of 152%.The latest figures for the first quarter of this year show that Ryanair had a net income of €197m, which is 152% ahead of last year.Traffic grew to 24.3m, the average fare rose by 9%, while total revenues were up 11% to €1.496bn.Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary said: Q1 profits were boosted by a strong Easter (but are somewhat distorted by the absence of Easter on the prior year Q1). The earlier launch of our summer schedule and actively raising our forward bookings has delivered a 4% increase in load factor to 86% and enabled us to better manage close-in yields. Ancillary Revenues rose 4% in line with traffic growth, as airport and baggage fee reductions were offset by the rising uptake of allocated seating.Customer serviceWhat about Ryanair’s recent focus on customer service?It said its “Always Getting Better” programme has “delivered significant improvement to the customer experience”.As well as allocated seating, free second carry-on bags, and an easier to use website, it also launched its family product in June. In July it released a new mobile app (including mobile boarding passes), which has reached 1m downloads in the 10 days since its release.In September Ryanair will launch Ryanair’s business service which will include same day flight changes, bigger bag allowances, premium seat allocation, and fast-track through security at many Ryanair airports.We will continue this winter to rapidly develop both our website and mobile platform to deliver more innovative features and services in addition to the lowest fares to our customers.Easter was a particularly good time for the airline, while the earlier launch of its summer schedule also gave it a boost.More passengersOverall, in the first quarter of 2014 it saw higher traffic volumes and load factors, and slightly lower costs, not including fuel costs.The low-cost airline says that it is on traffic for a strong performance halfway through the year, with traffic growing by 3% and fares rising by 6%, subject to late booking fares in August in September.But it cautioned against “irrational exuberance”:Based on these Q1 results and our strong forward bookings it is clear that we are on track to deliver a strong H1, during which traffic will grow by 3%, and fares will rise by 6% subject to late booking fares in August and September. However we would strongly caution both analysts and investors against any irrational exuberance in what continues to be a difficult economic environment, with some company-specific challenges in H2.Ryanair expects the second half of the year to be characterised by a much softer pricing environment “as many competitors are lowering fares, partly in response to Ryanair’s strong forward bookings”.Added to this Ryanair will aggressively raise capacity this winter by 8% to take advantage of growth discounts and build out business-friendly frequencies from Dublin and Stansted in particular.These initiatives will inevitably put downward pressure on fares and (mindful of last winter’s weak pricing environment) we continue to expect H2 yields to fall by between 6% to 8% which will result in full year yields rising by only 2%.Unit costs (not including fuel) for 2015 will rise by approximately 4%, due to higher traffic volumes.Ryanair now expects full year traffic to grow by 5% to 86m.“This increased traffic and higher load factors, combined with a slightly improved performance on unit costs allows us to cautiously raise our full year profit after tax guidance (from the previous range €580m to €620m) to a range of €620m to €650m,” it said.Read: New Ryanair app lets you use your phone as a boarding pass>last_img read more

Monitor Your Blood Pressure With Your iPhone

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first_imgLast night at ces Unveiled (a kickoff show of sorts), a company called Withings was showcasing all manner of health gadgets, including a Wi-Fi scale, and an iPhone-based baby monitor. The centerpiece of the company’s booth, however, had to be the company’s Smart Blood Pressure Monitor.Wrap the band around your arm like a traditional blood pressure monitor, connect it to your iPhone or iPod touch (actually, the company just says “iOS device,” so I suppose the thing will work with the iPad, as well), and then, with the click of a button, it will send the relevant information to your mobile device.The company uploads the information and gives you your results and where your your results should be. It will also, over time, chart trends in your blood pressure, including time of day trends.AdChoices广告The health gadget is launching this month, for $129.last_img read more

Barnes and Noble urges DOJ to probe Microsofts Android patent licensing tactics

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first_imgMicrosoft might have thought Barnes and Noble to be an easy target for more patent licensing revenue, but they were mistaken. B&N has now taken the fight right to the big guns at the Department of Justice, and is imploring U.S. regulators to take a closer look at Redmond’s strong-arm tactics.In their complaint, B&N alleges that Microsoft is using “trivial and outmoded” patents to wage battle against Android manufacturers. Further, the claim states that Microsoft is merely trying to drive up the cost of its rivals products in order to squash competition. What Microsoft is doing isn’t really any different from what’s going on in the mobile tech world in general, and saying that a company doesn’t have the right to protect its intellectual property (and profit from it) certainly doesn’t make any sense. Motivation is the key factor here, and B&N clearly hopes that the DOJ takes its side in the fight against Microsoft.Barnes and Noble isn’t quite in the same boat as the many companies who have already signed licensing agreements with Microsoft. HTC, Samsung, and several other licensees also build Windows or Windows Phone devices. The desire to maintain a good working relationship with Microsoft might have made it a bit easier to justify signing off on an Android agreement. B&N doesn’t, however, so it’s got nothing to lose by throwing down the gauntlet (apart from a briefcase full of cash in legal expenses).They’ve also got a bit more motivation. Microsoft filed with the ITC to block the import of the Nook eReaders, a step we haven’t heard about them taking with other manufacturers. Such a block would be disastrous for Barnes and Noble, with Amazon’s updated Kindle range heading to retail outlets next week. B&N didn’t have to worry too much about competition from Amazon in brick and mortar stores previously, but with more than 16,000 locations now set to carry the Kindle Fire and Kindle readers, B&N really needs to put this issue to bed before it causes any further complications.More at Bloomberglast_img read more

Verifone card readers hacked with a credit card

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first_imgKeeping your credit cards and bank account secure means ensuring your PC is viruse free for online banking, not using an ATM that looks modified, and keeping your cards safe while carrying them around in your wallet. But there’s a new way of gaining access to your card details and we as individuals can do nothing to stop it.It has been discovered that the credit card readers used by retail stores to accept payments can be hacked into and used to collect card details. Worse still, they can be hacked at the counter without anyone realizing the machine has been compromised.Security consultants MWR Inforsecurity discovered that Verifone credit card readers can have their software hacked simply by inserting a modified chip and PIN credit card into the device. This could be carried out in any store with a Verifone reader installed while attempting to pay. The payment wouldn’t work, but that’s not the goal and the hacker could use an alternative payment method once the compromise had been performed.With the software modified, the hacker can leave the machine collecting card details and PIN numbers for a number of hours or days before returning. Inserting another card then downloads those details, again without store staff realizing that anything is happening other than another declined card transaction.Verifone has confirmed this exploit exists for some of its older machines, but that it has closed the hole and is issuing new software to its affected card readers. However, this does show that card readers do pose a security threat, and one that criminals are more than willing to take advantage of.Read more at Channel 4 Newslast_img read more

Higgs Boson data set to music is oddly beautiful

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first_imgScientists have been searching for the Higgs Boson in the subatomic mishmash for years. Now that it’s probably been found, what’s the best way to celebrate? With some tunes, of course. To really get down at CERN, you want something unique. That’s why Domenico Vicinanza, a professional composer and particle physicist has used the preliminary Higgs data as the basis for a new piece of music, which you can hear above.To do this, Vicinanza took the data points from the CERN data that seems to confirm the existence of the Higgs and assigns notes to each of the numbers. The first draft of the melody is a little scattered, but not bad when you consider it was never intended to be music. The next step was to consolidate that simple melody to be something a little more listenable. Finally, Vicinanza took that refined melody and made it into a short piece of music.The Higgs Boson is an elementary particle, the existence of which was predicted by the standard model of particle physics. It was first posited by Peter Higgs in 1964 as the most plausible explanation of why objects acquire mass. The Large Hadron Collider at CERN is believed to have detected the Higgs in a high energy particle collision several months ago, but additional testing will be needed to confirm.Vicinanza’s final piece of music is a little more removed from the original numbers, but the piano melody at the beginning, as well as the marimba part in the second section, are directly from the CERN Higgs data. The intersection of science and art can be a pretty cool thing.The World via Open Culturelast_img read more

Chinese man builds his own bionic arms helps hundreds by selling more

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first_imgSun Jifa, a farmer in China, had his life changed forever when an explosive he planned on using for fishing went off prematurely. He lost his arms and when he couldn’t afford high-end, hospital-made prosthetics he opted for a cheaper set. Finding those to be less than acceptable, Sun started building his own pair of arms, which he currently wears. It’s an incredible story of ingenuity and personal strength.After creating his own pair of arms Sun started building others. Selling functional prosthetic arms for under $500, he saves people from buying the poor quality ones he was forced to use and helps those who are unable to afford professionally-made ones which can cost up to ten times the price. To date Sun has sold around 1000 arms, which means he’s been able to help hundreds of people rebuild their lives after a catastrophe.While the arms look rudimentary compared to what you may expect (especially once the term “bionic” gets thrown around) the video shows that they are fully functional and don’t hinder their owner from doing manual labor or precise mechanical work (such as making more arms). Sun noted that “[The left arm] transfers power from the natural movement of my elbow into the finger, allowing it to grab and hold… rotating the two bones that I have left in this arm allows my right hand to open and close,” giving us some idea of how they operate.The mechanisms inside the arms appear to be simple, functional, and versatile, so while the arms lack the life-like nature of the prosthetics produced by a major firm they are still an incredible achievement.For his effort Sun Jifa has created a thriving business, become local celebrity, and earned international media attention.last_img read more