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first_imgBut … In addition to being the most marketable star in baseball, Bryce Harper is also an excellent player, too.At age 26 and having recently posted one of the greatest offensive seasons in the history of the sport, there’s no doubt Harper would have helped the Giants win games in the coming years.But in 2029, 2030, and 2031? That’s a different story.Harper agreed to a deal with the Phillies on Thursday, ending the dream of him in orange and black, hitting moonshots into McCovey Cove.last_img read more

first_img18 February 2009Soweto, South Africa’s famous township, is well known to tourists who’ve visited Johannesburg and gone looking for a taste of the city’s African culture and history of resistance against apartheid.Now, adventure tourists can also board the bus to Soweto, as a project to develop a “vertical adventure centre” with a distinctive township feel starts coming to fruition.And, if you’re a local and you’ve already done the bungee swing between the two 100-metre-high Orlando Towers in Soweto, and need to push the boundaries further: no problem. For a new adrenaline rush, you can now do the swing inside one of the towers.Zoopy TV takes a flying leap from Soweto’s Orlando Towers. Click arrow to play video.Yes, from this weekend you can line up for the internal bungee swing, says Bob Woods, the project director and rope expert. The external swing involves falling 30 metres from the top of the tower, then swinging back and forth like a pendulum and eventually being lowered to the ground.On the internal swing, you swing high inside one of the towers and then are lowered to some 15 metres above the ground before taking a foefie slide (zip slide) back to earth.Soweto’s Orlando site is dominated by the huge, colourful twin towers, which used to supply electricity to the former white suburbs of Johannesburg, but which are now defunct. The disused power station building is a cavernous structure some five storeys high, overlooking a dam.Phase one almost completeThe internal swing and other features will complete phase one of the adventure tourism project taking place at the towers, made possible by a loan of R3.6-million from the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA).“Adventure tourism is a major growth market around the world, and the creation of an adventure tourism facility will undoubtedly contribute towards Soweto’s economic diversification and tourism attractiveness,” says Kate Rivett-Carnac, the DBSA’s tourism specialist.Woods says the vast walls of the towers will be developed into a “vertical adventure centre the scale and nature of which describes a truly unique and legendary facility.”He promises that by late March you can expect to be abseiling down the towers, and by early May you are likely to be bungee jumping between the two towers. He has brought in Canadian experts to help with the final rigging for the bungee jumping.Climbing the wallsAlso in the pipeline is climbing the internal walls of the towers, a climb of some 60 metres. Woods is concerned that climbing is an elitist sport – he’d like to bring it to young Sowetans.“I would like to promote climbing among the people of Soweto. It can often be a tool in helping to channel energies in a positive way,” he says. Other facilities below the towers he foresees are a restaurant, a music venue and bar, and a small skateboarding park.“We want to create the feeling of a park, where families can spend the day.”Since opening in June last year, Woods says he has had 15 to 20 jumpers take to the towers each day. Most visitors to the site are Gautengers, with 18 percent being foreign tourists. But it seems most people can’t quite bring themselves to jump off the towers, preferring instead to take the lift up, and stand admiring the view.Otherwise, from March you will be able to take a foefie slide ride from 10 metres up the side of one of the towers.You pay R360 for the swing, or R60 to take in the view from the top. The swing is open on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 9am to 5pm. You can book your place on the website.Source: City of Johannesburglast_img read more

first_imgShanghai’s Juneyao Airlines has become the first airline to operate under a new “Connecting Partner” model that allows smaller regional carriers to sign up with Star Alliance without paying full membership fees.The deal offers Star Alliance Gold Status passengers benefits such as lounge access, fast track security, additional baggage and priority check-in but not necessarily frequent flyer reciprocity.But the additional connectivity made available by the deal is only part of the story. It is also the first plank in a new strategy by the 28-member Star Alliance to expand its options by allowing regional, low-cost or hybrid airlines to link into its network without having to become a full member.Juneyao began operating in 2006 and now flies more than 10 million passengers annually on 62 Airbus A320 family aircraft.  It operates from Shanghai’s Pudong and Hongqiao airports and flies more than 80 domestic routes as well as international services to Hong Kong, Macao, Taipei, Kaohsiung, Thailand, Japan and Korea.It will connect in Shanghai with Star Alliance members Air Canada, Air China, Air India, Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways, Asiana, Austrian, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, Lufthansa, SAS, Shenzhen Airlines, Singapore Airlines, SWISS, THAI, Turkish Airlines and United  Airlines.Between them, the Star members operate more than 1,600 weekly services — 811 of them international —from the Chinese city to 64 destinations.“With Juneyao Airlines as a Connecting Partner we have achieved two important goals,’’ Star chief executive Jeffrey Goh said.  “First, as an alliance we can offer regional airlines an attractive way to connect to our global alliance network, without requiring full membership.“Going forward, this will enable us to strategically enhance our network.“Second, with Juneyao Airlines we strengthen our market position in Shanghai, a city which is already served by 17 of our member airlines and which will now offer even better connectivity to our customers.’’Stars says the connecting partners will be carefully selected and be required to high operating standards.The model also allows the partners to enter bilateral commercial agreements with individual Star members that can include frequent flyer benefits.In the case of Juneyao Airlines, frequent flyer members of Air Canada, Air China, EVA Air, Singapore Airlines and United will be able to earn and burn miles when travelling on the Chinese airline.Star is celebrating its 20th birthday with a network that offers more than 18,400 daily flights to 1300 airports in 191 countries.Its main competitors are the oneworld and SkyTeam alliances.last_img read more

first_img10 December 2009Online applications for accommodation during the 2010 Fifa World Cup™ are now open to international and local soccer fans on the Fifa.com website.This follows the recent launch of the online accommodation service by the World football controlling body, Fifa.Accommodation and ticketing provider Match has secured 1 725 190 room nights for next year’s World Cup, and 43% of the entire inventory (741 832 room nights) in the 1 007 properties will be reserved for the general public.Instant accommodation searchThe accommodation service will enable fans to instantly search the available inventory and make bookings.The process is simple: one just visits the Fifa World Cup section on Fifa.com and clicks on “Destination” and then on “Accommodation”. Enter the desired dates and location to view the available options, and you can immediately book the accommodation of your choice.Chartered domestic flightsMatch has also signed a service agreement with South African Airways to lease 20 aircrafts for the duration of the World Cup. These will provide 100 000 seats on scheduled domestic flights on match days during the month-long tournament.The domestic flights will fly to destinations such as Nelspruit, Bloemfontein, Polokwane and Port Elizabeth.This will help supporters find flight connections to smaller city destinations from their accommodation base.SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

first_img19 June 2015South Africa’s first digital currency incubator and hub is up and running in the form of BitHub, headquartered at the Bandwidth Barn in Woodstock, Cape Town.A cross section of traders, consumers, tech geeks and bitcoin enthusiasts were at the launch. Together they created an atmosphere of optimism and excitement at the potential of digital currency across all levels of commerce and tech.Speaking at the event, Joshin Raghubar, the chairman of the Bandwidth Barn, said: “We are entering into a new age in banking and finance and are in need of a platform and community for innovation within this space. BitHub aims to amplify the community of development in digital currency, and this launch event, focusing on the payment space of digital currency, forms a great segway to greater innovation within digital currency.”Financial technologyIan Merrington, the chief executive of the Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative (Citi), added: “We’ve been looking at the fintech space for a while, and the recent Bitcoin Conference lit a spark that we are excited to take further. Here is a platform that has potential for disruptive innovation that can solve Africa-specific needs, serve the unbanked, and also play a transformative role.”The formal banking sector was showing a keen interest in the digital currency and innovation space.“That’s why BitHub’s launch is timeous and vital,” he said. “Now there is a place to gather, to learn, to innovate; a community where digital currency entrepreneurs and developers can meet, swap ideas and solve problems. Citi is geared to help unblock constraints, backed by a business-friendly local government.Learn how bitcoin works:Legislation“We recognise that there are several challenges to overcome. Legislation around fintech needs to change, educating consumers and merchants on the philosophy and principles of digital currency, and an immature infrastructure, to name a few.“But there are also amazing opportunities; big banking is starting to invest in fintech development, we can unleash the Western Cape as a frontrunner in the development of fintech, and create awareness and positive discussion around the social impact offered by this technology through its open protocol.”Roslyn Lavers, the business development manager at PayFast, the payments processing service for South African websites, spoke about trends merchants such as Takealot, which accepted bitcoin, were experiencing.“In July 2014, PayFast’s decision to allow buyers to accept payment with bitcoin was largely exploratory, but we have been surprised by how much it is actually being used. The first week we saw payments totalling R50 000, and since then a steady trade value has been maintained.“Now we have in excess of 30 000 merchants that have bitcoin enabled, with the current trend being tech merchants embracing the bitcoin payments, and coffee and beer merchants following close behind.”Early adoptersHowever, it was still early days for bitcoin use in South Africa. “Early adopters are using this, and are using it consistently, which is a good sign, and has exceeded our expectations.”Francois Paul, a developer from BitX, a global bitcoin wallet, exchange and merchant service, explained why bitcoin was better than traditional payment methods.“Bitcoin allows for free flow of value, without a trust element in the equation,” he said. “It is a digital asset that cannot be copied, that has no counterparty risk and no charge back – it is not reversible. So the potential for fraud and scams is eliminated. It is borderless, fast, cheap and easy, and once people realise how easy it is to use, and the saving on transactional fees, consumer demand will spark a merchant response.”In South Africa, Landmark Computers was the first seller to accept bitcoin. Its chief executive, Andrew van der Nest said there was no risk and the network was incredibly safe.“We have had no issues with bitcoin as a merchant; the money is guaranteed in our account and cannot be reversed. Plus we love how ownership, control and responsibility are now absolutely in the hands of the end user, where traditionally it is the bank or merchant’s responsibility. Times are changing and we are changing with it.”Regarding education and legislation, Enrico Calandro from Research ICT Africa called on governments to become involved. “Digital currencies benefit the people, especially the poor, due to the low fees synonymous with virtual currency, and the ease of access thanks to smart phones.”Developers soughtIn closing, Merrington called on developers and entrepreneurs to participate in the growth of the technology. “We want to create a stronger community by collaborating with established players and incubating and supporting new ideas in this space.”BitHub will host regular workshops and events on digital currency and fintech innovation.Citi was established in 1998 to develop Cape Town and the region as a global technology cluster and hub for innovation that is a significant contributor to economic growth. It has become a blueprint for industry and public sector collaboration models for sector development.The Bandwidth Barn, a Citi operated initiative, has been recognised as Africa’s leading and most established incubator and accelerator. It also offers shared office space for entrepreneurs.Source: BitHublast_img read more

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) announced updated factors for prevented planting coverage that will strengthen the integrity of the federal crop insurance program. The updates were made to address the recommendations of a 2013 USDA Office of Inspector General (OIG) report, and are supported by the data from a subsequent third-party study commissioned at the urging of the OIG. These improvements will ensure that the program continues to be a well-run program that provides a strong safety net for producers.Prevented planting coverage provides producers protection if they are unable to plant an insured crop by the final planting date.  When adverse weather prevents planting, a prevented planting payment is made to compensate for the producer’s pre-planting costs generally incurred in preparation for planting the crop. These costs can include purchase of machinery, land rent, fertilizer, actions taken to ready the field, pesticide, labor, and repairs. The prevented planting factor is a percentage of the individual insurance guarantee and varies by crop, based on an estimate of pre-planting costs.These updates were required to address the recommendations in OIG’s 2013 report: RMA Controls Over Prevented Planting. The OIG recommended that the agency review the prevented planting factors and make changes if necessary. RMA commissioned a third-party evaluation of prevented planting coverage, which provided recommendations for determining prevented planting factors.  The evaluation was available for public comment from Jan. 30, 2015, to April 15, 2015.  RMA evaluated the public comments and determined that adjustments to the evaluation’s recommendations were necessary.RMA reviewed prevented planting factors for barley, corn, cotton, grain sorghum, rice, soybeans and wheat for 2017 as part of an effort to ensure that prevented planting factors most accurately reflect the pre-planting input costs of producers. Today’s rulemaking will improve RMA’s ability to manage the prevented planting factors moving forward. While the prevented planting factors will be reviewed and updated for all crops with prevented planting coverage, these first seven crops are being updated for the Spring 2017 planting season. Over time, the prevented planting factors may go up or down depending upon changes in input costs. RMA will evaluate the effectiveness of the recent changes and modify them as needed in coming years. Below is a table that lists updated prevented planting factors.The changes build upon recent improvements that protect the integrity of the federal crop insurance program. Due to an improved sampling methodology and other efforts, the crop insurance improper payment rate for 2015 was half that of the government-wide improper payment rate average. The program’s longstanding loss history demonstrates that rates are actuarially accurate. RMA continues to utilize technology and data mining to ensure that the crop insurance program is well-managed and free of fraud, waste, and abuse.Prevented Planting Coverage FactorsCropCurrentRecommendation from EvaluationFinalCorn60%50%55%Soybeans60%60%60%Wheat60%60%60%Cotton50%35%50%Grain Sorghum60%60%60%Barley60%60%60%Rice45%45%55%last_img read more

first_imgA bank can give you a credit card with little trouble. The goal of the bank is really to get you to borrow money, as that is how it profits from the transaction.You can give the razor away without making any money. You need the recipient to buy the razor blades, the real reason you gave them the razor without capturing any value in that transaction.You can ask people sign up for your service and get a high number of people to register. That small commitment is easily gained, but the more difficult commitment is getting them to buy what you sell.The loyalty card provides benefits to those who possess it, but it does very little to improve loyalty.Your prospective client can allow you to sign up as a vendor without ever placing an order with your company. By allowing you to register, they may benefit by getting rid of you, telling you they’ll call you when they need you.It’s easy to mistake small commitments as something more than they are. When you sell to businesses, the small commitments often mask that you have not obtained the larger commitment you really need. You can go all the way through some process with your prospective client only to find out they have no real commitment to change.The Big CommitmentIn The Lost Art of Closing, I put “the commitment to change” as the third commitment in a series of ten commitments, even though the framework is mostly non-linear. The reason the commitment to change follows only “the commitment for time” and “the commitment to explore” is because you can get all the way to the end of the process to find out there was no real will to change. These deals are lost to the decision to do nothing—or to postpone the decision to some future date.Without the commitment to change, your prospective client agree to all kinds of things that feel like progress but are no real indication that you are moving closer to a deal—or them to the better results you are trying to help them achieve. Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 31 Mar 2015 – One hundred and sixty nine people had to overnight in Providenciales unexpectedly, according to reports reaching Magnetic Media after another American Airlines emergency landing on island. Roads were blocked and first responders summoned to the scene last night at the Provo International Airport which took in the 767 which was en route to Miami, Florida from Port Au Prince, Haiti. In a world where tragic plane crashes are drawing heart wrenching headlines and reactions, it is no surprise pilots in spotting problems are seeking safe haven at the first sign of danger. We were informed by Disaster Management and Emergencies that no one was hurt. UK Governors of the Caribbean meet in Miami Haitian gov’t official under investigation commits suicide Related Items:american airlines, emergency landing, miami, provo international airport US Airways no more, last flight to TCI ‘emotional’ Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp This is a crime and in several of the cases, because the pets were tied in their owners’ yards, it may also be a crime of trespassing.  Some believe it is a plot to wipe out barking dogs so that home burglaries are easier; others believe it is frustrated neighbours who say there are too many loose dogs in the neighborhood while yet others believe it is just a wicked person killing off canine members of people’s families.   Needless to say the loss of these pets have been heart breaking, especially to children; in one case as many as three dogs from one family were killed and believed poisoned .   Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, TCI, October 21, 2016 – There is a pet killer on the loose in Millennium Heights and residents are up in arms about the trend of dogs seemingly being poisoned; they are calling for an investigation and for the culprit or culprits to stop it.  At least seven families have been devastated by the news now that their family dog was poisoned by someone either living or coasting in the area… just moments ago a resident found his dog dead in the back yard.   Nine dogs have been killed and in nearly all cases the Police have been called in, but there has been no investigative team sent in to determine what is going on.   Related Items:#animalmurderer, #dogskilledinmilleniumheightslast_img read more

first_imgPoway student wins countywide Spelling Bee Categories: Good Morning San Diego, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter March 15, 2019 KUSI Newsroom, 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The 50th Annual Countywide Spelling Bee winner is 14-year-old Elliott Husseman from Poway.Elliott Husseman, an 8th-grader at Inspire Charter Schools, correctly spelled “voiturette” to win Thursday. “Voiturette” means a small usually two-seater car.The 14-year-old will now go on to represent San Diego County at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in National Harbor, Md., in May.“This wouldn’t be possible for me without the great support of my family,” said Elliott, who credited his mother, father, and uncle in his success. Posted: March 15, 2019 KUSI Newsroom last_img read more