Callejon to join Hamsik in China?

first_img Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports for just £11.99 per month including live LaLiga, Eredivisie, Scottish Cup Football and more. Visit: Napoli forward Jose Callejon could reunite with Marek Hamsik and Rafa Benitez at Chinese club Dalian Yifang in January, it is claimed. The Spaniard has been a virtual ever-present at the San Paolo since his move to Napoli from Real Madrid in the summer of 2013. However, his contract expires at the end of the season and President Aurelio De Laurentiis has already made it clear that he will not match the winger’s salary demands.  Now, Il Mattino reports the 32-year-old might follow in Hamsik’s footsteps and join Dalian this winter – providing they come up with a similar bid. If no deal is agreed in January, Callejon could still be on his way once the season concludes in May. Dalian are also managed by Benitez, who was in charge of Napoli between 2013 and 2015.last_img read more

Stephen Fleming biography revives Aushim Khetrapal’s match-fixing woes

first_imgEPISODE 2: Fleming has Khetrapal on the backfootAushim Khetrapal protests his innocence a little too loudly. “I am off sports. I am into films and production, which are more exciting. Stephen Fleming has made the charges only to gain publicity for his book.They are rubbish,” he rants. It was pure,EPISODE 2: Fleming has Khetrapal on the backfootAushim Khetrapal protests his innocence a little too loudly. “I am off sports. I am into films and production, which are more exciting. Stephen Fleming has made the charges only to gain publicity for his book.They are rubbish,” he rants. It was pure deja vu for 42-year-old Khetrapal, who in his new avatar as actor-cum producer still cannot shake off allegations of cricket match fixing which had made him more famous than a stuttering Bollywood career ever could.In 1999, former England all-rounder Chris Lewis and New Zealand captain Fleming separately alleged that sports promoter Khetrapal had offered them Pound 300,000 to act as conduits to fix an England-New Zealand Test match in Manchester. At the time, Khetrapal, who ran Radiant Sports Management, had called a press conference and vehemently denied the allegations to clear his name. Five years on, in 2004, it was virtually a repeat performance or as he would probably want it known, Khetrapal: The Sequel. In a story that made international headlines, Richard Boock’s biography of Fleming, Balance of Power, recounts the incident featuring the sports promoter and names names. At a hastily convened press meet in Delhi, Khetrapal stuck to the same tune. Khetrapal maintains he met Fleming in the bar of the Holiday Inn in Leicester and again the next morning and left behind his numbers and visiting card.Fleming’s account of the meeting states that Khetrapal claimed there were people he could call all over the world to give insider information on cricket. He offered to pay the cricketer Pound 200,000 upfront and another Pound 100,000 within a year if he joined the syndicate.”Enough is enough. It is time I brought out my side of the story and I intend to publish my book to counter all these charges,” Khetrapal exclaims.”Khetrapal said he would pay me Euro 200,000 straight up.”Stephen Fleming, in his biography Balance Of PowerWaving a dogeared, spiral bound manuscript titled I Dare, Khetrapal promises that a book is coming, written in record time. “It contains episodes of match-fixing, and the row over sponsorship and telecast rights.”Brushing aside threats of legal action, the publishers of Fleming’s book have said they were okay with what has been published. Publisher Kevin Chapman and managing director Hodder Moa Beckett said that Balance Of Power had undergone the regular legal checks. “We did not think it was particularly problematic from the legal point of view,”Chapman was quoted as saying. “Stephen has been incredibly consistent … He recorded it all at the time and took good advice.”The controversy has its origins in August 1999 when Khetrapal says he went to England to organise a benefit match for Punjab Cricket Association secretary M.P. Pandove and met Fleming as the Kiwis were due to tour India. advertisementDeja vu for Aushim KhetrapalKhetrapal also claims that before this, he had met a news agent called Kamlesh Patel who fixed the meeting with Lewis, whom Khetrapal invited to act as coordinator for a benefit match which would feature either an England XI or a Rest of the World team.Lewis’ story, later sold to tabloid News of the World for Pound 40,000, was, again, different. He alleged that Khetrapal had tried to persuade him to throw the Manchester Test and asked him to offer similar amounts to England cricketers Alec Stewart and Alan Mullaly for dropping catches and bowling wides respectively. When Lewis refused Khetrapal, said the paper, he contacted Fleming. Five years on, other facts have come to light. Travelling on the same flight to London with Khetrapal and staying in the same hotel in Leicester was Mumbai-based film financier Jagdish Sodha. Sodha’s name featured prominently in the recent corruption case involving Kenyan cricket captain Maurice Odumbe, who was then banned. Neither Sodha nor Khetrapal deny knowing each other.”Yes, I was there. But I was on business,” said Sodha from Mumbai. The ICC’s Anti-Corruption and Security Unit detectives, who revisited the case, charged Sodha with using Khetrapal as a “front” in his attempts to fix players.Says one, “The material evidence was weak. It was one person’s word against the other … therefore, we did not pursue it.” Scotland Yard had also tried to establish links between betting syndicates that had contacted Lewis and those that had dealt with former South African captain Hansie Cronje. They arrested and questioned three Indians based in London, Kamlesh Patel (the same news agent Khetrapal said he had met), Jayendra Patel and Peter Patel, for their alleged role in recruiting England players to fix matches.Khetrapal will wait for Fleming’s book before deciding on his line of action. Does he believe that match fixing exists in cricket? “Let’s not be hypocritical. You know as much as I do what happens,” he says. That is telling.advertisementlast_img read more

Nubia Z11 review: New flagship killer in town

first_imgHere’s a quick question. What is the most overrated term used in tech right now: a term, that when prefixed with the name of a gadget, invariably leads to a conclusion that the gadget will most likely be awesome? The answer, if you haven’t guessed already, is- a flagship.The year 2016 was the year of the proverbial flagship smartphone. It was also the year of the proverbial flagship-killer smartphone. While big-ticket flagships have been around for a long time now, the concept of a flagship-killer is relatively new to the world. It’s essentially applied to a phone that has all the ingredients that make a flagship, but comes at half the cost. While OnePlus has been more than vocal about the concept, others like Xiaomi and Meizu have been silently building flagship-killer phones for a while now. ZTE’s offshoot brand Nubia has now joined the bandwagon with the Z11.The Z11 is a gorgeous piece of technology. It’s every bit as powerful as well. The phone, for what it’s worth, costs just Rs 29,999. It is, with due respect, the new flagship-killer in town.The Z11 doesn’t look like an iPhone (or a Samsung Galaxy or an HTC One)And boy, am I glad that it doesn’t. Smartphone design has come to a point — of saturation — when every other smartphone you see either looks like an iPhone, or a Galaxy or a One. There is very little or no innovation happening at all. The Z11 comes as a rare breath of fresh air. It is, without a doubt, one of the most original smartphones that you will find in the Indian market right now. Boasting of an all-metal body, the Z11 looks and feels every bit as premium as the original flagship-killer, the OnePlus 3 (and OnePlus 3T) if not better. It feels nice and cold to the touch, just like the OnePlus 3, or for that matter, any other high-end all-metal body smartphone. It does, 9 out of 10 times, justify its flagship-killer credentials if you were to talk about looks and looks alone. But it’s certainly not perfect.advertisement The Nubia Z11, is without a doubt, one of the most original smartphones that you will find in the Indian market right now It may have a body similar to that of the OnePlus 3, but the Z11 is a different breed altogether. It’s heavier, thicker and a lot sharper in comparison. Depending on how you perceive your ideal smartphone, the aforementioned traits could be deal-breakers (or deal-makers) in the long run. You will most definitely feel the Z11 in your hands at all times, because well, its dimensional parameters (162 gram, 7.5mm) would be hard to ignore. Even though the sides wrap around the mid-frame very aesthetically, chamfers along the edges mean the phone feels a lot boxier in actual usage. It’s not as sharp as a Sony Xperia, but it is close. It is a little slippery as well, but thankfully, the chamfers on-board do a much better job at holding on to your hands than the OnePlus 3.There will be many who wouldn’t mind the Z11’s extra weight (and thickness) as well as sharpness though. The phone — unlike the OnePlus 3 or the Xiaomi Mi 5 — looks and feels a lot sturdier and firmly grounded, after all. I have come across people who find the Mi 5 supremely light and the OnePlus 3 alarmingly slippery. The Z11 will certainly appeal to that audience.The Z11 certainly made a lot of sense to me, only, ergonomically speaking however. Nubia, for some unknown reason, has decided to launch just the black gold version of the Z11 in India (for now). It comes in all-black with gold accents. Honestly, it’s not as flashy as the shimmering gold version of the ZenFone 3 that I recently reviewed, but it is still, a little too flashy for my liking. But, that’s just one opinion, and design is subjective. There are all kinds of buyers, those who like to flaunt and yet others who prefer the sobriety.With the Z11, rest assured, you will get a lot of attentionNot because of its gold accents. Not because of its fiery red circular motifs. But because the phone has almost no bezels. It comes with what Nubia calls an aRC 2.0 bezel-less display that allows the Z11 “to appear thinner and lighter due to significant reduction in thickness of the glass panel” according to the company. That’s a lot of fancy marketing talk, but what does it mean for the average buyer? Well, the Z11 has 2.5D curved Corning Glass 3 on the front. On the inside, the company has – using some clever optics — managed to stretch the length of the main display area ever so slightly so it actually extends beyond the frontal curve. The whole thing – when lit up – gives the illusion that the display is gradually wrapping around the glass and is virtually edge-to-edge. Clever optics or not, what it does for the average buyer is give them more real estate to work upon (an 81 per cent screen-to-body ratio to be precise) without having them to invest in a bigger phablet. Because it has almost no side bezels, the Z11 even though it is a 5.5-inch phone, also feels smaller and a lot more compact than the OnePlus 3.advertisementAlso read: OnePlus 3 review: Flagship killer that will make you want to settle On the inside however, it’s a pretty standard 1080p IPS LCD affair. It doesn’t sound all that convincing on paper. But it’s actually quite good unless of course you’re all gung-ho about virtual reality. The Z11 produces surprisingly accurate colours by default, and also gives you an option to manually tinker about with on-screen saturation for slightly better results. The screen gets pleasantly bright and ambient light sensing works as it should. Viewing angels are excellent, and all that extra real estate gives you plenty of room to breathe, even in outdoor sunny environment.The Z11 has lots of power and lots of gimmicksBecause well a flagship-killer ought to be powerful and there’s no harm in (some) showing off. The Z11 is powered by a 2.15GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor coupled with Adreno 530 GPU and whopping 6 gigs of RAM. You get 64GB of internal memory straight off the bat, and a hybrid expandable slot that supports microSD cards of up to 200GB. The phone supports 4G LTE (VoLTE-ready) and dualSIM via hybrid card slot.The Z11 is able to do justice with its top-notch hardware to a large extent. It breezes past every task– ranging from basic to hard-hitting — that you can throw at it without breaking a sweat. The Adreno 530 GPU inside makes sure all your graphical games run smooth and with minimal drops in frame rate. 6 gigs of RAM inside a smartphone was overkill before the OnePlus 3 happened. It is fast becoming the new normal. 4GB RAM may still be ample for the most of us but seriously, who’s complaining? More importantly, the Z11 doesn’t get hot, even when pushed to the edge. Now that’s a rare trait in this day and age.The mono speaker setup on-board the Z11 can get loud with some distortion at peak volume. It’s not the best sounding speaker in its price range, just a regular affair but at least it gets the job done. Phone calls made with the Z11 are of excellent quality and I did not encounter any odd call drop issues with my review unit. That said, the earpiece volume could have been a little louder.advertisementAlso read: OnePlus 3T review: Best phone in India right now With great power comes great responsibility. That’s where the Z11 falls short of a phone like the OnePlus 3 or even the Mi 5 for that matter. The Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow-based Nubia UI 4.0, even though it is very low on bloat or unwanted apps, seems to be in dire need of optimisation. Due to improper software optimisation, the Z11 feels wanting in the long run. The phone feels slower than the OnePlus 3 that runs an almost stock version of Android. However, most users with a more generalised usage wouldn’t notice the slight stutter or lag that creeps in while navigating between the home screens or opening and closing the apps overview window.Where it falls short in optimisation, it makes up with gimmicks. The Z11 is being marketed as a no-bezel phone, and just so Nubia can emphasise more on this aspect, the phone comes with plenty of ‘edge’ based features. You can quickly select your desktop by holding the edge and swiping inward, you can switch between apps by swiping up or down from the edge, you can swipe repeatedly from the edges to kill background apps and swipe from both edges to adjust brightness. Gimmicks are gimmicks for a reason. Chances are most of us wouldn’t use them ever but it’s still nice to know (and show off) what your phone can do, right?There is life beyond the edge gestures as well. Two features that really stand out in Nubia’s phone are: the split-screen view and super screenshot. While split-screen allows you to simultaneously run two instances of your desktop (and any third-party app) in one go very seamlessly, super screenshot allows you to take long screenshots as well as capture screen recordings by long pressing on the rear-mounted fingerprint scanner. Speaking of which, the fingerprint scanner on-board the Z11 works like a charm. It’s fast and super accurate.A surprisingly good camera and surprisingly good battery lifeThe Z11 sports a 16-megapixel — Sony IMX298 — rear camera with f/2.0 aperture, triple image stabilisation (consisting of HIS (Hand-held Image Stabilisation), Optical Image Stabilisation and Electronic Image Stabilisation), and PDAF. It is pretty quick to focus and shutter speed is also good. The phone does point-and-shoot very well, at least most of the time. Should you need more granular control, the Z11 is practically jam-packed with options. Nubia’s Neo Vision 6.0 camera app will take some time getting used to, but once you’re through you’ll really appreciate the level of functionality that it brings to the table. The Z11 is the one and only smartphone in and around its price category to feature a bezel-less display and mind you; it’s more than just a gimmick. It’s very functional too and oh so very good looking The phone is capable of shooting some excellent photos in well-lit and indoor lighting situations with good dynamic range and no metering issues. The phone is also capable of taking excellent bokeh shots or photos with shallow depth of field. Colours are mostly true to source, if a little oversaturated at times, but overall the Z11 has a crazy fine camera.Low-light photos are a hit or miss, but at its price point the Z11 is definitely among the top contenders for the best camera phones of the year in line with phones like the Nexus 5X. XPreviousNextThe phone also gives you an 8-megapixel camera on the front that captures good selfies, with good detail in good lighting. Low-light selfies have some noise.The phone is backed by a 3,000mAh battery and metes out good battery life, if not the best. Mixed usage, which included an hour of video playback, half an hour of GPU-intensive gaming, 45 minutes of basic games, phone calls (to the tune of one hour), some music streaming and YouTube playback along with some web browsing gave me close to 16 hours on the device. A more generalised usage should see most users sail through one to one and a half days effortlessly. The phone supports Quick Charge 3.0 but does not ship with a fast charger in the box.Should you buy it?Yes. The OnePlus 3 (and now the OnePlus 3T) has become the gold standard to beat at around the Rs 30,000 price mark. This is because the OnePlus 3 commands a ridiculously cool spec-sheet and a ridiculously sensible price tag. It is one of those rare case studies where it’s hard to find a catch, simply because there isn’t any. The Nubia Z11 comes very close. If it were not for its wonky software, the Z11 could easily have outsmarted the OnePlus 3 in almost every sense of the word.But then, the Z11 has an ace up its sleeve. It’s the one and only smartphone in and around its price category to feature a bezel-less display and mind you; it’s more than just a gimmick. It’s very functional too and oh so very good looking. It has all the ingredients that make a flagship, but comes at half the cost. It won’t necessarily kill the OnePlus 3. But, it could be a viable alternative.####ZTE Nubia Z11####8/10########Good stuffExcellent build qualityBezel-less displaySurprisingly good camerasGood battery life####Bad stuffWonky softwareRivals are fasterNo fast charger in the boxlast_img read more

Great Gifts for Grads

first_imgHas an organization or university offered you an opportunity with a stipend? Whether it’s an internship or apprenticeship, a stipend is a set amount of money that helps offset living expenses. This fixed amount is financial support provided while you’re… Full Story,Truth is, there is a lot to be excited about when it comes to college: new friends, a new routine, (college parties!), and more independence. But along with all these perks, it’s also time to start thinking about your finances…. Full Story,A routing number is a unique number that identifies a specific banking institution. Each routing number is made up of nine digits. Routing numbers are sometimes referred to as an American Banker’s Association routing transit number or an ABA RTN…. Full Story,It’s stressful enough having a car loan over your head and staying on top of your monthly payments. But what if you have an upside-down car loan — in other words, the amount you owe on your set of wheels… Full Story,When you’re trying to get your financial house in order, it’s easy to get lost in the specifics. You might stress about how to adjust your budget, where to find some extra cash for the holidays or what funds to… Full Story,Shortly after graduating from New York University with a Master’s degree, Melanie Lockert turned to food stamps, as she worked her way out of $81,000 in student loans. “There were a lot of emotions around carrying that debt. It caused… Full Story,Traveling is one of the best things in life, and luckily, low funds don’t have to dash your dreams of enjoying an epic adventure. A wealth of destinations—both in the U.S. and abroad—are so affordable that even hardcore penny pinchers… Full Story,While we don’t yet have flying cars that collapse to the size of a suitcase, pneumatic tubes that transport us from room to room or machines that automatically bathe and clothe us in the morning, every day we’re getting closer… Full Story,Times have changed since Grams and Gramps were your age, looking to settle down and buy their first home. But today the house with the white picket fence—or that trendy loft in downtown—isn’t completely out of the question if you… Full Story,We recently hosted a Twitter chat as part of our #RealTalkSeries. And let’s just say, things definitely got real. Many of you joined us to discuss “taboo” and cringe-worthy money questions such as how to improve a bad credit score,… Full Storylast_img read more

You’re Invited to a Twitter Party with and Jean Chatzky!

first_imgSo you have debt. As you probably know, you’re suffering in good company. According to the Federal Reserve, total household debt is at a staggering $13.86 trillion — and has been steadily climbing. While you might be one of millions… Full Story,We’ve all heard the expression “less is more,” and the concept of minimalism embraces that fully. While it is not a new concept, the minimalism trend has gained popularity in recent years,  especially amongst Millennials in the United States. From… Full Story,Saving more money is one of those big goals that a lot of people have, but get stuck. I know this because we use to be right there too. The year would fly by and we were nowhere near our goal…. Full Story,Have you ever heard of “discretionary income” but felt unsure about exactly what it means? You’re not alone. Many people are aware of what they spend, but not the financial lingo behind it. Discretionary income refers to the remaining funds… Full Story,Mastering the personal finance basics feels pretty good. Getting a firm grasp on your expenses and budgeting like a pro is a reason to celebrate—you’re building the foundation for a solid financial future! This, of course, goes hand in hand… Full Story,While the traditional definition of financial freedom is that you have enough in investments, savings, and passive income that you don’t have to ever work for money again, it can also mean that you reach a point where you don’t… Full Story,Do you ever feel on edge because you’re not sure if you have enough in your bank account to cover your bills and put food on the table? If so, you’re far from alone. A recent study by the United… Full Story,Starting your journey toward financial fitness can be overwhelming. If you take a gander at the Center for Financial Services and Innovation (CFSI)’s eight key indicators of financial health, which include spending less than your income, having sufficient living expenses… Full Story,This Independence Day, as with each 4th of July, I’m reminded of the great leap of faith my parents took more than 37 years ago when they bought one-way tickets to the United States. Their move from their embattled Iran… Full Story,Earlier this month I had a major #fangirl moment. It was a full #fangirl evening, in fact, when I teamed up with New York Times bestselling author and Girlboss founder Sophia Amoroso to share in a very special money event…. Full Storylast_img read more

Make Getting Dressed Easier (And Cheaper!) with a Capsule Wardrobe

first_imgAdd Pieces with PersonalityYou might be thinking that this all sounds very boring. Wrong! These are simply the basics for starting your outfit. Add in your own personality your favorite jewelry, bags and shoes to these pieces to create looks that will make a statement but are easy to put together. Rather than trying to match a crazy abstract printed shirt in the morning, it’s much simpler to add a bold, eye-catching necklace to your capsule look.From these basics, feel free to supplement your wardrobe with other pieces like shorts, skirts, blazers and the like. A traditional capsule collection contains 24 to 30 items of clothing, so there is definitely some wiggle room and space for creativity! Work within your budget and start with the pieces that best fit your lifestyle. We all wake up in the morning wishing we were walking into a closet the size of Carrie Bradshaw’s on “Sex and The City”—or really, any celebrity for that matter. But too often we look into our wardrobe only to find that there isn’t anything to wear. It’s not that we don’t have plenty of clothes. The problem is simply that we can’t put together the right outfit.The solution? Stock up on the basics and create a capsule wardrobe. This strategy ensures that you have the best essentials to make getting dressed something you look forward to in the morning.I have also found that these basic pieces cost significantly less to purchase—especially if you invest in high-quality pieces secondhand—and should give your bank account enough padding to spend your money elsewhere. And in the long run, you’ll spend a lot less on impulse purchases. After all, there’s no need to constantly add to your wardrobe once you’ve carefully built a closet of versatile pieces and go-to outfits.Edit Your Current WardrobeFirst things first—clean out your closet! Sift through your drawers, go through your hanging pieces and set aside anything that you do not fit into or wear anymore. Do the environment a favor by donating your unwanted clothes to be resold or repurposed as textiles. Don’t throw anything away! If you want to make money in the process, take them to your local consignment shop or send them into resale websites to earn a little cash for your troubles. You’ll be left only with the pieces you love and wear regularly, making it easier to grab an outfit and go in the morning.Build Up Your BasicsNext, you can begin filling in the gaps in your wardrobe. I’m sharing the pieces that I prefer to have in my closet, but feel free to tweak my tips to fit your preferences. If you tend to lean more toward building your outfits around skirts, then you can ignore the part about finding the perfect pairs of pants, and so on. For each of my ideas, make sure that you cater your choices to your body type and preferred silhouettes. You don’t have to change your basic style to get a capsule wardrobe—the goal is to build a curated closet of pieces that you can wear over and over again. Most importantly, stick to a general color scheme so that all of your clothing can be mixed and matched.Here are a few of my personal favorites:White button down. One of the best staples to have in your closet is a nice white button down. This can be worn as a casual blouse, buttoned up for a business meeting or as a simply classic top dressed up with a statement necklace or earrings. In the transitional months, wear it layered over a tank top or dress for a more laid-back look. (This is my favorite way to wear it!) Once you have found your perfect white shirt, feel free to add another with prints or other colors that will fit into your capsule closet with ease.The perfect dress. A combination of maxi dresses, slip dresses and tunics are essential. You can easily build outfits around these classic styles, layering them with your blouses, pairing your favorite pair of heels with them, or simply staying chic while running your daily errands. Each style will serve a different purpose for everyone but I have found these translate best with a capsule wardrobe.Well-fitting pants. Next up, narrow down your pants selection. Do you have old colorful jeans or printed pants still hanging around that you don’t fit your current style? Replace those with simple slacks and the perfect pairs of denim that will match all of your shirts and tops.Comfy t-shirts. My personal can’t-live-without-pieces are t-shirts. There is simply nothing better than finding the perfect white tee. I tend to lean towards loose-fitting v-necks that I can wear with jeans, skirts or layered under slip dresses, and build my outfit out around that. Honestly, I have four or five go-to tees in rotation, and I think you should too! Add on to your tee collection with whatever color, graphic print or style suits you. You’ll feel great in this classically simple piece, and when you feel great, you look great. Rebecca Piersol, a stylist and fashion blogger, shares easy, budget-friendly fashion tips for building stylist-approved outfits. Rebecca writes for her own site, The Crystal Press, and thredUP, an online and offline thrift store that has a selection of fabulous pre-loved women’s clothing.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Relatedcenter_img Post navigationlast_img read more

Why Does the Paris Climate Agreement Need a Rulebook? 7 Questions and Answers

first_imgThe adoption of the Paris Agreement in 2015 was a historic moment for the global response to climate change. The Paris Agreement solidified long-term, international goals to tackle the climate crisis: to hold global temperature rise well below 2 degrees C and aim to limit it to 1.5 degrees C, to increase adaptation and resilience to climate change, and to align financial flows with low-carbon and sustainable development. But details for how to implement the global pact were left unresolved.Countries spent three years negotiating guidelines for bringing the Paris Agreement fully to life, and in December 2018 in Katowice, Poland they agreed on the Paris Agreement Rulebook to put those guidelines in place. While a few elements of the Rulebook are still to be finalized, countries have now established processes and rules for how they will work together in a fair and effective manner to achieve their collective goals.Below we answer seven important questions about how the new Rulebook will help countries implement the Paris Agreement. For an in-depth explanation and reference document, download our Paris Agreement Rulebook booklet.1. What is the Paris Agreement Rulebook?The Rulebook contains rules and guidelines detailing how the Paris Agreement will operate in practice. The original Agreement adopted in 2015 outlines what countries should aim for. The Rulebook now tells countries how they should work together to achieve a low-carbon, climate-resilient future. The rules include guidance on how national governments should develop and communicate their climate action plans (known as Nationally Determined Contributions, or NDCs). The Rulebook also explains how countries should review their progress, individually and collectively, with a view to upgrading NDCs every five years until the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement are met.2. How Does the Rulebook Affect Countries’ Efforts to Curb Emissions?Efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions—including reducing deforestation, increasing energy efficiency or expanding renewable energy production—make up the bulk of countries’ NDCs. But countries’ first NDCs often do not provide enough information for others to fully understand their emissions reductions goals, such as which sectors and specific greenhouse gases are targeted, or expected timeframes for these climate efforts. The Rulebook outlines the types of information countries should include in their NDCs about emission reduction efforts, as well as how they can credibly measure their emissions and transparently convey this information.3. Does the Rulebook Say Anything About Climate Adaptation and Loss and Damage?The Paris Agreement asks countries to periodically provide information about their adaptation plans, priorities and support needs. The Rulebook provides detailed guidance about the specific types of information that countries should provide, such their specific risks and vulnerabilities to climate impacts, and how they are implementing their adaptation plans. The Paris Agreement has elevated the need to deal with loss and damage beyond what adaptation efforts can prevent—such as impacts to countries’ economies, cultural heritage and public health. For the first time, the Rulebook provides countries the opportunity to report on their efforts to cope with this loss and damage.4. Are There Rules for Countries Providing Climate Finance to Others?The Paris Agreement calls on developed countries to provide financial support for developing nations to cut their emissions and adapt to climate impacts. The Rulebook provides reporting guidance for countries that provide financial, technological and capacity-building support to other countries. Developed countries must share information in advance about support they will offer in the future. This enables developing countries to plan ahead for how they can use these resources most effectively to cut emissions or adapt to climate impacts. In addition, the Rulebook includes guidelines for transparently reporting on finance provided in the past, as well as guidelines for how developing countries should report on the support they need and receive.5. How Will We Know if Countries Do What They Said They’d Do?The Rulebook includes a number of guidelines focused on transparency and accountability. In particular, it outlines three important processes to help countries and observers understand whether countries live up to their word.The first is an enhanced transparency framework describing how countries will report updates on their greenhouse gas emissions and track progress toward achieving their NDCs. This framework also allows technical experts to review countries’ progress and for countries to review each other’s efforts.The second is a global “stocktake” process, which will enable countries to examine whether they are collectively living up to the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement. This process is designed to inform the ambition level of countries’ NDCs as governments improve them over time. The first global stocktake will be in 2023, and subsequent stocktakes will take place every five years thereafter.Third is an expert committee charged with promoting countries’ compliance with the Rulebook and facilitating countries’ implementation of their climate plans. The Rulebook includes guidance on what can trigger a process bringing countries before the committee, as well as response options for the committee.Over the next couple of years, negotiators will further review, refine and elaborate on these guidelines, based on additional technical advice, to ensure these processes are fully operational.6. Are Any Parts of the Rulebook Still Outstanding?There are two key issues that countries were unable to agree on in Katowice. First, countries failed to agree on rules detailing how countries can voluntarily work together across borders to reduce emissions through approaches like international market mechanisms. The Paris Agreement allows countries to transfer emissions reductions among themselves. The Rulebook now needs to specify the rules for how countries will do so—such as by selling credits for their emissions reductions to another country. It must also ensure these reductions are not counted twice.Second, the Paris Agreement asked countries to consider whether they should standardize the time periods covered by countries’ NDCs. Currently, some NDCs extend to 2025, while others extend to 2030. In Katowice, countries agreed that they should use a common time period for future NDCs, but they could not agree on specific years.7. Where Does National Climate Action Go From Here?Next week in Bonn, Germany, countries will continue negotiating the unfinished topics. Rules that were not finalized in Katowice should be reviewed and refined in Bonn and then adopted at the COP25 climate summit in Santiago, Chile, this December. At COP25, negotiators will also grapple with how to ensure developing countries have adequate financial, human and technological resources to deliver on their climate commitments and follow the Rulebook’s reporting guidelines.Separate from the formal negotiations, in September 2019, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is organizing a UN Climate Action Summit in New York to galvanize political support for countries to strengthen their national climate commitments by 2020. He will ask countries not only to commit to enhancing their NDCs then, but also to offer concrete plans for more quickly reducing their emissions across a variety of important sectors, including energy, transportation, industry and buildings.last_img read more

Small Business Website: Are You Spending Too Much On Yours?

first_img Spending like a “big” company:  This often occurs when small business owners How much you should spend on your website is important, but it’s also important to decide Are you content with a static, brochure-ware site are you looking to do more? you should spend it (i.e. on what attributes). for?   As you might guess, I’m not a fan of either extreme. potential clients will be more likely to select you?  What features can you add to your website that will increase the service you can give your existing clients – and hence increase your retention?  Do you need a blog?  How about an email newsletter subscription service?  Chances are, any combination of these things is best where more likely to help you improve and grow your business than a website designed as if you were in the fashion industry (nothing against the fashion industry, they just value different things). Are you looking to impress existing clients, potential new clients or friends and family? When talking to many of my friends and colleagues that are running small businesses, the issue of website design investment often comes up (this is particularly true for new businesses that are just getting started). Originally published Sep 25, 2006 2:23:00 AM, updated March 21 2013 used to spend it is equally important.  Will it make you money? ?  I think the answer is:  it depends on your clients and your business.  The wrong answer is to spend most of this money on a flashy design that’s going to win the web designer local recognition and “street cred” (i.e. they build their portfolio).  Chances are, your clients and prospective clients are not going to be impressed with the snazziness of the website.  That cool Flash intro video that took up half the design budget will likely not help your business a whole lot.  Instead, you will likely be better off investing in the message (vs. the medium).  What can you convey on your website that will make it more likely that the Here are questions I’d ask yourself when trying to make a decision: how do you allocate this money  Are you doing commerce on the web or otherwise making direct sales?  (If so, it will dramatically impact what you should spend and where). Deciding how much you should spend on your website is important.  Deciding to work for a big company and have big company contacts.  Another contributing factor to this is that small businesses that are trying to “look” big by investing big dollars in website design. Do you care if the local design firm is not going to put your website in their portfolio? how Who is the website much not In my experience, too many small business owners either spend too little on their website (and hence miss an important opportunity to leverage the Internet) or they spend too much in the wrong places.  In a future article, I’ll look more deeply at some of the tactical aspects of what to do (and not to do) when creating a small business website. Who is the website for?   Here are the two ends of the spectrum: What functionality is appropriate?  Spending almost nothing:  This is where you get a friend or family member that is an “expert” on website creation (here, expert is often described as someone that knows more than you do). Here’s an example:  Lets say you are the partner in a small professional services firm (consulting, legal, etc.).  Lets also say that you decide to allocate $2,000 on getting a “professional” website up.  You want to convey the right image and be on equal footing with the “big firms”.  In fact, you may have even worked for one of these big firms earlier in your career and decided to go independent.  Now, I’m not going to argue that $2,000 is too much to spend (we’ll assume that this is the “right” amount for discussion purposes).  The important thing is Important point:  Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Facebook Updates Insights with Real-Time Analytics

first_img Many marketers will be excited to know that the Facebook Insights update will also include more content-related metrics. For example, businesses will be able to look at impressions, referral clicks and the most popular stories on the site. Insights application will get distribution and engagement metrics related to their content’s performance on Facebook in real-time. This new data will enable businesses to optimize content and adjust its placement based on performance. website connected to Facebook Insights Facebook Insights for websites Businesses that use any of the Facebook Social Pugins (Example: Recommendation Plugin located in the right sidebar of this blog) will be able to see performance metrics such as “Like” button impressions, rate of comments and a breakdown of interaction by demographic information. Additionally, the demographic details available to businesses will include age group, gender, language or location. For the first time, Facebook will provide data on the behavior the “Like” button triggers, including views, clicks and visits. Businesses will be able to use this data to test the impact of placement on “Like” button click-through rate. . But today, the social network giant turned its reporting dashboard into a real-time analytics tool.  , click the big green box in the upper right corner. Topics: Marketing Takeawaycenter_img What do you think about these updates to Facebook Insights? For businesses that rely on Facebook as a source of referral traffic to their websites, the new changes to Facebook Insights are exciting. These updates demonstrate how the Facebook platform is maturing. The first steps in leveraging these changes is to make sure that you have your Once you have your website attached to Insights and have started to receive data about the “Like” button and/or social plugin performance on your website, it is time to optimize. As you publish new content, look at the data in Facebook Insights to determine how it performs compared to past blog posts, for example. This information will help you tweak the topics you write about, the placement of your “Like” button and plugins as well as other content elements. As part of this update, businesses that are using Originally published Mar 9, 2011 9:35:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 “Like” Button Analytics The lack of data about the actions of Facebook fans (and potential fans) is a point of frustration for many marketers. Previously, Facebook offered some basic analytics through its Facebook Marketing Data Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Quiz: Are You a Modern Marketing Superstar? [Infographic]

first_img Start by going to Last weekend, when the Bruins’ Patrice Bergeron sustained a hit during an NHL playoff game and failed to return to the ice, my husband — who does NOT use Twitter — asked me to see what the Twittersphere had to say about his status… There’s no doubt that the times are a’ changing Check out this awesome series of live webinars The Modern Marketer When I started my career in marketing, all of our communication with prospects and customers happened across three basic channels: print, broadcast, or in-person. All communication was one-way and “on message.”  If the quiz confirms you’re a Modern Marketing Superstar, by golly, shout it from the highest rooftops! Post your score in the comments below and we’ll do our best to show you some online love. In 2011, the number of channels through which companies can communicate is virtually infinite — as are the number of ways that consumers can tune out or avoid any communication they perceive to be irrelevant, uninteresting, or “one size fits all.” Adapting to this shift isn’t optional; it’s critical. But there’s more to it than just boning up on the latest social media tools or launching a blog. It’s not about the technology; check this out Download a copy of The Modern Marketer in poster-size [PDF]! > a quick-and-easy online quiz Change is hard. But irrelevance [and failure] is ever harder. Which is why we’ve created Happy Modernizing! because he knew we’d get the scoop on Twitter first. There’s no shortage of data and infographics to illustrate how dramatically the Internet and mobile devices have impacted consumer behavior. No longer do we rely on advertising or the Yellow Pages to inform our shopping decisions; rather, we “Google it,” ask our friends on Facebook, browse through product ratings and reviews or turn to sites like Yelp to get the scoop on what people think of a local business. to take the 10-question quiz. Once you have your score, do one of the following: . The question is, are you and your marketing team changing as well? Are You a Modern Marketing Superstar? …Or not? Also, dinosaurs roamed the Earth. B) Get Help! it’s about the mindset.  Topics: Content Marketing to help you gauge where you are on the “Modern-Marketing-Superstar-to-Luddite” spectrum.  spend a few minutes digging into this .  designed specifically to get you quickly up to speed on all of the latest modern marketing must-knows! You’ll also definitely want to  Inbound Marketing A) A Victory Dance.  and maybe  Originally published May 11, 2011 5:15:00 PM, updated July 08 2013 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Before & After: 5 Famous Websites Get Fictional Makeovers

first_imgThe one time in my life I got a professional makeover, I was surprised at how much the little details mattered. Going into the makeover, I expected to walk out of it with crazy eye shadow colors, fake eyelashes, and bright red lipstick. I’m from New Jersey, so this was entirely possible. ;)But when they first spun my chair around, I felt like I looked exactly like myself, only way better. My hair was the same cut and color, but had some nice volume to it. My makeup was subtle, yet accented all of my features in the right ways.Free Workbook: How to Plan a Successful Website RedesignIf you took a picture of me at that moment, you wouldn’t have realized that the makeup artists had a very careful strategy in place to make me look like I normally would … just more refined. That’s really what the best makeovers are about: Making you look like you, only better. The same concept goes for website redesigns. People expect them to be these overt, crazy changes that make you go WOW. Change that yellow to blue, use parallax scrolling, add in some fancy product shots, and boom: Redesign’s done. But some of the best redesigns are more subtle and strategic, focusing on features with relatively low “wow factor” that also make a big improvement in visitors’ experiences with a website.But those website makeovers are hard to find in the wild — often the changes feel so natural and subtle that you overlook them. To give you an idea of how website makeovers can really work, I picked five famous brands, teamed up with one of our incredibly talented in-house designers, Matt Plays, and reworked them to be an even better version of themselves. Check ’em out below and see if you can spot the differences! If you’re feeling stuck, we’ll explain what we’ve changed, too.(And HubSpot customers, if you want to try to implement any of these strategies on your own website, you’re good to go — these are all COS-friendly.)AppleBeforeAfterApple’s one of those brands that can rarely do wrong when it comes to design. Their current site looks great, but there are a few improvements they could help better cultivate that Apple-fandom they’re so well known for.The “after” aims to do just that. This is the page people will see right after they’ve purchased a MacBook. Instead of featuring hand-picked, non-interactive case studies, this screen uses smart content to serve up only the content customers care about, and allows them to become promoters by actively participating in the campaign on social media.Notice the call-to-action to tweet about their MacBook using the hashtag #MyVerse and the accompanying social proof at the bottom from other promoters. These subtle cues give customers who are probably in their most excited state (waiting to get something they’ve been pumped to purchase) more motivation to promote Apple. And of course, in this fictional makeover, Apple would have a more robust social media presence and the tools to respond to customers who are using #MyVerse.VolkswagenBeforeAfterLike Apple, Volkswagen has a gorgeous-looking website — right now, I’d give it an A. But there are a few things that could take this website up to an A+.When anyone goes to, they see the same thing: a Golf GTI. Seems like a cool car — but what if you were a mom of a large (5+ people) family? The Golf GTI isn’t really a great fit for you. Wouldn’t it be nice for VW to show you a car that better fits your needs? That’s exactly what the reimagined site does. Using smart content, it gives you (the theoretical parent) a much more personalized experience. Also, VW’s mobile site offers a pretty different experience than its desktop version because it’s not responsive. (Learn more about responsive design here.) So, we decided to make the experience much more similar — regardless of the device. For the mobile site, we also include a specific “Find a Dealer” call-to-action to pull up dealers nearby while you’re on-the-go. So, overall, the redesign may not look much different than VW’s current site, but it’s a much better experience for visitors. CitrixBeforeAfterNow on to a brand that many of us use for virtually interacting with our peers: Citrix. Like Apple and VW, Citrix has a pretty slick website, but we thought we could use smart content to offer an even more impressive experience to current customers. When customers come to the homepage, chances are, they’re looking for two things: 1) a way to easily log in to the software, and 2) resources to better use Citrix tools. So that’s what we gave ’em — a front-and-center way to log in and some tailored resources to help the customer have an awesome webinar experience. With the makeover, customers have all the information they need without having to hunt around on Citrix’s website. Deloitte  BeforeAfterDeloitte’s website has some traditional elements that could use an update to align with a modern audience. It’s fairly text-heavy, and uses a slideshow to feature different parts of the website. It’s not bad, but it could definitely use a little glitz, glam, and a dose of strategy to make it feel more modern and accessible. In the “after” version, we pretended that a visitor interested in consulting services arrived on the page. With smart content, we could get rid of that slider in favor of one big header image and call-to-action focused on consulting. Then, below that main call-to-action, there’s a feed of consulting-related blog posts in case the visitor isn’t ready to learn about Deloitte products just yet. Your homepage is a destination for both strangers and repeat visitors — modern homepages are equipped to respond to both audiences with relevant content.IBMBeforeAfterLike many of these other companies, IBM has a bajillion products. With the current homepage, it’s hard to figure out where to go without navigating through a maze of dropdowns. Wouldn’t it be better for IBM to surface content they know you’d like? That’s what the “after” version addressed — assuming that you’ve shown interest in big data, the homepage morphs using (you guessed it) smart content. Like Deloitte’s reimagined homepage, there’s a central image and call-to-action instead of a slider. Also, because big data can be a difficult concept to grasp, we featured a much more accessible big data example from IBM’s website: Watson’s time on Jeopardy.Volia! IBM has a more tailored homepage without changing too many of the design components.None of these reimagined websites underwent drastic aesthetic changes — because to make your website perform better, that’s not always required. To optimize your homepage, consider whether you really need that expensive redesign. You might just need to make some adjustments that improve personalization, device compatibility, and user experience. There’s no need to break the bank to get more value from your website. Topics: Originally published Jun 23, 2014 7:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Website Redesign Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

The Hazards of Working a Desk Job & How to Overcome Them [Infographic]

first_img Originally published Apr 28, 2016 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Sore neck. Blurred vision. Difficulty focusing. The feeling that your eyes are being burned into oblivion by your computer screen. If you’ve been experiencing any (or all) of these symptoms, there’s a good chance that you’re suffering from a terrible affliction known as “working a desk job.”Even if you love what you’re doing, sitting and staring at a screen all day can take a toll on your well-being. And while there are ways to sneak in some exercise during the workday to offset a few of these negative effects, it’s hard not to wonder: What kind of impact is this routine really having on my health?The team at FramesDirect answered that question in infographic form. What’s more, they uncovered some tips for overcoming the hazards that often accompany desk jobs — specifically the ones that impact our vision. For more, check out the infographic below.33Save33SaveKnow of any other tips for being more productive while working a desk job? Leave a comment below. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Three-star Georgia Running Back Lyn-J Dixon Names OSU in Top 12

first_imgWhile you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. Three-star Georgia running back Lyn-J Dixon narrowed his list of schools from 22 to 12 on Wednesday evening, and Oklahoma State made the cut.Dixon announced his cut as he has “decided to focus” more closely on the 12 with signing day roughly seven months away. Tennessee, Alabama, Virginia Tech, Ole Miss, Florida, Michigan State, Louisville, Texas, Notre Dame, Clemson and Auburn also made his list.Oklahoma State has not landed a commitment at running back for the 2018 class, but running backs coach John Wozniak has made multiple visits to see the Taylor County product in Georgia.As a junior last season, Dixon compiled 1,914 yards rushing and 312 receiving yards for a total of 38 touchdowns while garnering major national interest.last_img read more

Who Oklahoma State Should Target at Cowboy Back for 2018

first_imgLast week we took a look at where Oklahoma State’s 2018 recruiting class stands and which positions the staff should focus its efforts on with their remaining scholarships. Now we’re breaking down each of those positions to look at where OSU is likely to or should focus their efforts.As a recap, OSU still has a maximum ofseven scholarships remaining for the 2018 class with 18 commitments, but I think they’ll only use four or five. Here are the positions they need to fill:Defensive End | Cowboy Back | Defensive Tackle | LinebackerWe’ve already looked at linebacker and defensive tackle. Today, we’re going to look at Cowboy Back targets.AdChoices广告Cowboy BackWe’ll start with a player I think is the most likely prospect to end up in Stillwater, three-star tight end Jesse Palmer. The 6-foot-3, 215-pound TE from Oklahoma City was generating a lot of interest last year before suffering a season-ending Achilles rupture. That’s a serious injury that have left most teams, the Cowboys included, in a holding pattern.As of now, Palmer’s only other offers are Arkansas State, Colorado State, Louisiana-Monroe, Memphis, and Ohio. However, if Palmer picks up where he left off before the injury, expect more offers from bigger programs to start rolling in.If Palmer doesn’t work out, the next most likely candidate to me, is two-star recruit Barclay Ford out of Forney, Texas.While Ford doesn’t get the needle moving like some of the other guys on this list, he fits the size requirements at 6-foot-2, 225-pounds. Last season for North Forney, Barclay had 820 yards and three touchdowns on 51 receptions, and averaged 16 yards a catch. That was a big jump from his sophomore year when he had 173 yards and zero touchdowns on 14 receptions, and averaged 12 yards a catch. If he can make another leap this year, his stock will rise.As of now, all of Barclay’s offers are from division two schools, though he has generated interest from multiple D-1 programs including OSU, Baylor, Texas, Oregon State, and Tulsa.There’s no hurry here for OSU, but they should certainly keep an eye on him. If the Cowboys head into signing day without a tight end commit, Barclay could be a diamond in the rough find.A guy OSU would love to land is three-star “Big Easy” prospect Glenn Beal. The 6-foot-5, 250-pounde tight end is big and athletic, and plays for powerhouse John Curtis High School. Last season Beal had eight receptions for 153-yards and a touchdown on offense, and three tackles, one tackle for loss, and one sack on defense.OSU made an offer to Beal earlier this month, despite the fact that everyone believes he will end up staying in state at LSU. Beal has offers from 19 schools in all including Alabama, Ole Miss, Arkansas, Arizona State, and TCU among others.Despite everything saying Beal will pick LSU, it’s interesting OSU made an offer to him. Yes, Coach Gundy and Co. can offer anyone they want, but you have to think there was at least some interest by Beal. OSU has developed a history of nabbing talented players out of Louisiana. If they could do so again here, it would be a huge get for the class.My outside-of-the-box pick would be three-star tight end prospect Jacob Kanier. The 6-foot-4, 220-pound prospect from Cypress, Texas may be listed as a tight end, but he spent his junior season playing quarterback for Cy Woods High School. We was a dual-threat with 1,606 yards, 14 touchdowns and nine interceptions on 205 passing attempts, and 506 yards and 10 touchdowns on 140 carries.At 6-foot-4 and 220-pounds , he fits what OSU seems to be aiming for at Cowboy Back now. While the upperclassmen range in height from 5-foot-10 to 6-foot-4, the three freshmen are 6-foot-4, 6-foot-4, and 6-foot-5.Right now, Kanier only has offers from two Division-1 programs: Louisville and Air Force. He’s also made a visit to Purdue but hasn’t picked up an offer.An offer and a solid push may just push Oklahoma State to the front of the line on an intriguing, but raw prospect. I’m not generally one for going after prospects who have already committed to other schools. However, in this case there’s a chance OSU could swing the favor of Christian Trahan. OSU has a good track record of landing players from Louisiana, and Trahan has long been on OSU’s radar dating back to 2016.Trahan committed to Houston after Oklahoma State had offered, but at the time Nic McTear was committed to the Cowboys. Now that he’s gone, there’s no reason to think OSU couldn’t make a strong push to flip him. OSU is Trahan’s only Power-5 offer. Based on reputation, Houston was the second best program that offered Trahan, behind the Cowboys. If it get late into the recruitment period and OSU still hasn’t landed a tight end prospect, I think it would be wise to put the full-court press on Trahan. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img read more

After ‘A Lot Of Growing Pains,’ Flowers Having Fun Before Senior Season

first_imgWhile you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. Tre Flowers has always been one for comfort. On the field, he glides around seemingly without any effort at all. Even when he makes diving plays to break up passes and slides head-first on the turf, his game is tidy and straightforward. At media availabilities during the season, most players show up in nice attire. Collared shirts. Kept hair. Proper bottoms. Flowers shows up almost every time in sweats or gym shorts before grabbing a collared shirt at the last minute. And Jordans are a necessity. If he isn’t wearing a hat, his bed head is splaying out.It all appears to be so simple and enjoyable for the senior safety, but it hasn’t always been like that.AdChoices广告In November 2015, Flowers’ dad, Rodney, was in a motorcycle accident that almost killed him, first reported by Jenni Carlson of The Oklahoman. Rodney obliterated his pelvis, broke his right leg and right ankle, dislocated his shoulder and had internal injuries to his rectal bladder and abdomen, according to the report. It was bad. In an interview with Oklahoma State athletics, Tre had to compose himself a couple of times when talking about it.The Cowboys were 10-0 and hours away from playing then 8-1 Baylor at Boone Pickens Stadium. Flowers told OSU he thought that team was going to the national championship. Next thing he knew, he was on a private jet back to San Antonio to see his dad. The Cowboys lost that game to Baylor 45-35 after Flowers returned, but then they lost in Bedlam and then again in the Sugar Bowl to Ol’ Miss.Then came this past season, when he played with a seasoned group of guys in the secondary, including one of his greatest teachers, mentors and influences, Jordan Sterns. Together, Flowers and Sterns accounted for 162 tackles and 12 pass break-ups. They paired with cornerbacks Ashton Lampkin and Ramon Richards, who started every game together in 2016. In a lot of ways, that was the closest group of guys on the field.It’s not the same anymore. Sterns and Lampkin are gone. Richards has moved back to play safety with Flowers. And a bunch of little-known corners are expected to receive serious playing time. All of that is arbitrary for Flowers though. This is his senior season. His last shot at pushing the Cowboys from good to great.“It’s a little emotional. It’s gonna be different,” Flowers said. “It’s gonna be a show. It’s gonna be fun.”With Richards, it’s almost impossible to not have fun. He is the guy who comes to practice freestyle rapping, starts trashketball games and tweets about things like this:So if i am walking behind someone and we are about to walk through 7 doors, must i say “thank you” all 7 times ??— Ramon Richards (@chief_vii) January 30, 2017Richards and Flowers were forced to start as freshmen (Flowers as a redshirt and Richards as a true freshman), so it’s only fitting that they play alongside each other at safety as seniors. Richards said it’s never easy to lose guys like Sterns, but playing with Flowers is still a constant reminder of the situation they’re in.“At the end of the day, it’s just a game,” Richards said. “There’s nothing to stress about. There’s nothing to sit here and hurt about. It’s all a game at the end of the day, and it’s never bigger than us.”Flowers said that laid back mindset he shares with Richards share comes from his parents. When he was growing up in Converse, Texas, Flowers’ mom and dad were always the cool parents. They let him make his own mistakes and learn from them. That was nice when things were going well, but when they weren’t, he said there were “a lot of growing pains.”Flowers signed with the Cowboys Feb. 6, 2013, as a three-star safety holding offers from Arizona State, Kansas State and nine other schools. When he got to Stillwater, those growing pains amplified. Starting as a redshirt freshman and sophomore was particularly what stuck out as a point of real pain in his career.“I just felt like my confidence was at an all-time low,” Flowers said.Then-redshirt senior Larry Stephens was injured, so Flowers started six games and played in 12 as a redshirt freshman in 2014. He was 18 years old.“Playing against big names, I let the names get to me,” he said. “I didn’t believe in myself a lot.”That season, Flowers made 56 tackles, which was sixth-best on the team. He had seven games of at least five tackles. And he also added three pass break-ups. He didn’t play too poorly, especially for a freshman. Redshirt or not, those are good numbers. But that wasn’t what Flowers saw. He saw the negatives.That next season was still tough. There were times when he doubted his abilities, but he started every game. He had 83 tackles, which was fourth-best on the team. A pair of interceptions. Seven pass break-ups, which led the team. Three and a half tackles for loss.Something just wasn’t right.“Felt like I didn’t belong,” Flowers said.The people around him got him out of that, he said. His parents, Sterns, Richards and others in his recruiting class helped him see the positives. Richards said Flowers is the one of the most underrated players he has known since he started playing football. His defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer said Flowers has turned into one of the best leaders on the team.“He’s a stud. He really is,” Spencer said with a laugh. “He makes some unbelievable plays for us. He’s long. He’s physical. If he keeps doing what he’s doing now, if he stays locked in with the maturity and the experience, I expect him to have a tremendous year.”It used to not be that way. Flowers was a good, solid piece to an already established secondary when he was a freshman. He has always been long with lanky arms on a 6-foot-3 body, but “physical” was definitely not one way to describe Flowers when he got to Stillwater for the first time. Spencer laughed again and said he remembers his first impression of him.“When he came in here, he had to run around the shower to get wet, he was so skinny,” Spencer said. “I knew he needed to get in the weight room and eat.”He saw the buck-80 safety as a bit of a project. The length was always there, he said, but he wanted to know what he’d look like in three years.Three years later, Flowers is the one hosting recruits, showing them the ropes and letting them know what OSU is all about. Former Clemson cornerback Adrian Baker, a recent graduate transfer commit, was led by Flowers on his visit.“He showed me around and told me what it was like,” Baker said in an interview with Triple Play Sports. “Everybody like family.”Now a senior, Flowers said everything he is going through is, “extremely fun.” There are more leaders on the team than ever before, he said. Before, he felt like it was just a bunch of young guys trying to lead while doing everything they could to not make mistakes, he said. They wanted to be themselves though, he said, so it was a balancing act.“Now we’ve figured out how to do that,” Flowers said.last_img read more

Jon Favreau already working on The Mandalorian season 2

first_imgLos Angeles: Jon Favreau has revealed he has already started writing the second season of “The Mandalorian”, which is set to premiere on Disney+. Led by Pedro Pascal, the upcoming live-action “Star Wars” series is heading to the streaming platform by Disney studio. Favreau, who serves as writer and executive producer on the project, said the team has finished work on the debut installment. “We’re done with the first season. I’m actually writing part of the second season now. So I’m having a blast,” he told Jimmy Kimmel on the host’s late-night show on Thursday. The cast also includes Gina Carano, Carl Weathers, Giancarlo Esposito, Werner Herzog, Nick Nolte, Emily Swallow, and Omid Abtahi. Disney and Lucasfilm are yet officially announce a sophomore season of the series. EW has reached out to the studio for comment. “The Mandalorian” premieres November 12 on Disney+.last_img read more

Timeline in the case of Toronto serial killer Bruce McArthur

first_imgA timeline of key events in the case of Toronto serial killer Bruce McArthur based on information released by police:September 2010 — Skandaraj Navaratnam, 40, disappears from Toronto’s gay village.Dec. 29, 2010 — Abdulbasir Faizi, 42, is reported missing to Peel Regional Police, west of Toronto. He was last seen in Toronto’s gay village.October 2012 — Majeed Kayhan, 58, of Toronto, is reported missing.November 2012 — Police launch Project Houston to investigate the disappearances of Faizi, Navaratnam and Kayhan.April 2014 — Police close Project Houston, saying none of their findings would classify anyone as a suspect of a criminal offence.August 2015 — Soroush Mahmudi, 50, of Toronto, is reported missing.May 2016 – July 2017 — Police believe Dean Lisowick, 43 or 44, of no fixed address, was killed by McArthur during this time span.April 14, 2017 — Selim Esen, 44, is reported missing.June 26, 2017 — Andrew Kinsman, 49, is reported missing.August 2017 — Police launch Project Prism to investigate the disappearances of Esen and Kinsman.September 2017 — Project Prism officers identify McArthur “as someone to be included or excluded as being involved in the disappearance of Andrew Kinsman.”Dec. 8, 2017 — Police Chief Mark Saunders says the force will review its practices in missing persons investigations. He says there’s no evidence to suggest a serial killer is walking the streets of Toronto.Jan. 17, 2018 — Police uncover evidence suggesting McArthur was responsible for both Kinsman and Esen’s deaths, along with the deaths of other unidentified people.Jan. 18, 2018 — McArthur is arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of Esen and Kinsman. Police say McArthur is believed to be responsible for other deaths.Jan. 19, 2018 — McArthur has his first court appearance.Jan. 29, 2018 — McArthur is charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of Mahmudi, Kayhan and Lisowick. Police say more victims may be identified.Feb. 8, 2018 — Police say they’ve recovered the remains of six people from planters at a house where McArthur worked as a landscaper, and say they expect more charges.Feb. 13, 2018 — Police say excavation at the home’s backyard turned up no human remains, but suggest they may “revisit the scene” when the weather warms up.Feb. 23, 2018 — Police lay a sixth charge of first-degree murder against McArthur, identify Navaratnam as one of the alleged victims whose remains were found in the planters.March 5, 2018 — Police say they’ve recovered the remains of a seventh person linked to McArthur.April 11, 2018 — Police lay a seventh murder charge against McArthur in Faizi’s death.April 16, 2018 — Police lay an eighth murder charge against McArthur in the death of Kirushna Kumar Kanagaratnam, who came to Canada from Sri Lanka.Jan. 29, 2019 — McArthur pleads guilty to all eight charges of first-degree murder.Feb. 8, 2019 — Sixty-seven-year-old McArthur is sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

InFocus The inquiry into the death of Phoenix Sinclair

first_imgInFocus on APTN National NewsLast week the final report on Phoenix Sinclair’s death was released in Winnipeg.This time we again put the child welfare services InFocus.Phoenix had a short and tragic life.She was just five years old when she died.Her mother and step father were convicted in her murder.SCO Grand Chief Terrance Nelson comments on the inquiry and its findings.  In the second half, we hear from Phoenix’s former caregiver, Kim Edwards.last_img

Toronto gallery honours Indigenous artist and her years of work

first_imgAPTN National NewsShe is a leader in the Aboriginal art community.Daphne Odjig had tirelessly advocated for the recognition of Aboriginal art in the mainstream.Odjig recently celebrated her 95th birthday.One Toronto art gallery in Toronto honoured her with an exhibit dedicated to five decades of her work.APTN’s Delaney Windigo has that story.last_img